Coping Cookies advocates for mental health – through baked goods

Last July, Ashley Hernandez and her partner Samantha Padilla went to their small eat-in kitchen to bake. The menu consisted of oversized, sticky biscuits that barely fit in the palm of your hand – some weighed almost a quarter of a pound.

Hernandez shared this with her coworkers in the mental health department at Seattle Children’s Hospital to donate to a local charity. The cake sale was so successful that today Hernandez and Padilla bake over 450 cookies every month for their Coping Cookies company.

The name came naturally. Hernandez and her staff were not only concerned with the struggles of their own lives during the pandemic, but also with the well-being of their patients. Hernandez decided that sharing a few cookies would be a delicious way to tackle.

Coping Cookies now offers a menu with over 35 varieties. The Hernandez cookies included in the cake sale are now part of the OG Box, which sells coping cookies in pop-ups in the Seattle area. Once a month, Coping Cookies opens online orders for a new box of four cookies that are sent across the country.

Since only the two-woman team works in the commissioner’s kitchen, the monthly boxes were sold out within minutes. Lines for the popups often wrap around the block.

“We’re still amazed at the cookies we make,” said Padilla.

Her favorite cookie was part of the original cake sale in July and now comes in the OG box, This Sh! T is bananas.

“We say this all the time: It’s like banana bread and a chocolate chip cookie have a baby,” said Padilla. “It’s so good every time.”

Hernandez’s favorite is the On A Roll, a spin on a cinnamon roll. The maple biscuit has cinnamon chips, caramelized bourbon pecans, and a cinnamon bun filling and weighs seven ounces.

“We are really committed to giving people a really good cookie that they will remember,” said Hernandez. “To this day, when we try the cookies, we say, ‘Oh my god, did we do that?'”

But coping cookies still sweeten the deal. Not only do they serve incredibly unique cookies, but they also support nonprofits that partner with marginalized populations or mental health wellbeing.

“We continued to think about donating to specific organizations and we are very selective about our organizations,” said Hernandez. Coping Cookies checks the tax information and board of directors of each organization before donating money. Hernandez said they are carefully considering where the donated money goes and how much engagement they have in the community.

“We put a lot of love and time into the cookies and worked on them, and we believe in the message,” said Padilla.

Coping Cookies sells boxes of four cookies on their website and supports a new non-profit organization every month. Check Instagram for updates on the availability of orders and popups in the Seattle area. The next Coping Cookies popup is April 24th at Seeking Kombucha in South Lake Union.