Carmel Valley’s SoCal Bakeshop sharing joy one cookie at a time

Brian and Kathleen Daugherty of SoCal Bakeshop.

SoCal Bakeshop cookies have quickly become a Solana Beach Farmer’s Market favorite. Launched this summer by Carmel Valley residents Brian and Kathleen Daugherty, their white chocolate drizzled and chocolate chip-loaded confections have been selling out every Sunday.

Loyal customers, or “Kookie Monsters”, are fans of SoCal Bakeshop’s big and chunky cookies, coming in at about 4 and a half ounces, crispy on the bottom and soft on the inside. They use only “spectacular” ingredients and, most importantly, the cookies are always fresh-made that day.

Among recent farmers’ market customer reviews: “The best cookie I’ve had in my life”, “perfect combination of I don’t know what” and “10 out of 10, would always get it again.”

It takes some by surprise that Brian is the baker in the family.

“I like cakes, I like cookies and all things sweet,” Brian said. “This is a hobby that has grown into something more than a hobby.”

SoCal Bakeshop cookies.
(SoCal Bakeshop)

During the pandemic, that hobby went on steroids. More time at home meant more time in the kitchen and he baked tons of bread, cakes and experimented with cookie recipes. The family ate lots of cookies but they mostly shared treats with friends—those satisfied friends always encouraged the Daughertys to try and sell their goodies and this summer they decided to go for it.

Their first day at the market was June 27 and they sold out in an hour.

By trade, Brian is the senior vice president and chief philanthropy and communications officer at the San Diego Humane Society and Kathleen is the deputy director of philanthropy at the New Children’s Museum. Their philanthropic efforts now extend to sharing joy, happiness and a little SoCal sunshine through their tasty confections: “We’re trying to make the world a better place through cookies,” Brian said.

While he is in charge of the baking, SoCal is 100% a family affair: “Without Kathleen, this business wouldn’t be what it is,” he said. Their three teenage children have also embraced coming out to help sell cookies on Sundays.

A lot of time and effort and love goes into making a great cookie, Brian said. Each recipe has been through many iterations and tweaked to get it just right. All of the cookies are named to reflect the SoCal/ San Diego lifestyle and the market menu changes every week.

The PB Block Party is one of SoCal Baskehop's favorites.

The Marine Layer is their best-selling and signature cookie with cream cheese, crushed Oreos and a drizzle of white chocolate on top.

The PB Block Party cookie’s name evokes both Pacific Beach and peanut butter, with peanut butter cups and chocolate chips. The Beach House is their spin on a snickerdoodle, the Wipeout is all of the chocolate and The Local Legend is their chocolate chip.

Surf and Turf is a cookie you might not find anywhere else: Nutella-stuffed with butterscotch and chocolate chips.

SoCal Bakeshop also does a vegan chocolate chip cookie called the Rip Tide and a gluten-free cookie, The Goofy Foot.

“Our goal is to make them all a festival of flavor and fantastic consistency so when you eat it, it makes you want to come back every week,” Brian said.

Brian jokes that their mission is to “continue to build our global cookie empire one farmers’ market at a time” but so far they are loving the local flavor of the Solana Beach market: the neighborhood, the great food and vendors and the amazing connections formed with customers.

“The Solana Beach Farmer’s Market is our home, we’ve loved it,” Brian said.

Find SoCal Bakeshop cookies at the Solana Beach Farmer’s Market on Cedros Avenue (on the corner of Rosa Street and Cedros) from 12-4 p.m. on Sundays. Follow on Instagram @socalbakeshop. For online orders, visit