In the heart of downtown Homewood, a quaint, cozy and bright little cookie shop is baking some big-time cookies — worthy of being crowned among the best in the country, according to the Food Network. And Cookie Fix’s more than 60 rotating cookie flavors keep its loyal customers coming back again and again. The tiny storefront (there are only 200 square feet worth of walking room) has been booming with business ever since it opened less than a year ago. Throngs of customers snake throughout the shop daily, all looking to get a bite of the heavenly cookies.
Longtime cookie connoisseur Amy Jason is the mastermind behind Cookie Fix. She developed her recipes years ago while she was a stay-at-home mother. Today, she’s sharing her talent with the entire Homewood community — and anyone else who happens to hear about her famed sweets.
“I started baking when I was little, probably by about age 10,” Amy says while sitting on a bench just a few steps away from her tiny shop, located in the heart of Homewood’s shopping district on 18th Street.
The story behind Cookie Fix, Amy says, begins years ago when she began baking as a stress reliever. In between raising three children, attending PTA meetings and doing the long list of other duties that being a mother entails, Amy would bake. Cookies, she says, were her go-to.
“I found that being a stay-at-home mom, after having a career, there’s not a lot of immediate gratification,” Amy says. “It’s all long-term stuff, which is great, but it takes a lot of work.”
In a few minutes, Amy could whip up a batch of warm cookies and have a happy household that was blanketed with the comforting aroma of something sweet. She latched on to the tradition and began sharing her cookies with friends, her Sunday school class, her kids’ teachers — anyone who might need an extra reason to smile.
“People really came to know me for my cookies,” Amy says.
Back then, however, the budding baker wasn’t 100 percent sold on her talent. She knew she had a knack for making an exceptional cookie, but turning that gift into a business was still a distant thought.
Obsessed with the idea of making the perfect cookie, Amy would grab any book or magazine that made the lofty claim of touting the best cookie recipe. She wanted to see how her cookies sized up next to the self-proclaimed heavy hitters.
“I would see a cookbook or a magazine at Barnes & Noble and it would say ‘The Best Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe Ever,’ and I had to buy every copy that made that bold claim,” she says. “I would make it and go, ‘Well, that’s nothing special. That’s not as good as my recipe.’”
Even with her supportive husband David and kids Kathryn, Greg and John backing up her firm conviction that her cookies were hands-down the best, Amy still needed some nudging from a few local friends to start a full-fledged business. Andy McMakin, husband to Ashley McMakin (co-owners of Birmingham’s Ashley Mac’s), was one of those friends who encouraged Amy to step out and start building a business.
“He said, ‘You don’t have to know it all at one time. You know enough,’” says Amy, recalling an hours-long conversation with Andy.
That conversation, paired with a vote of confidence from friend David Maluff of Full Moon BBQ, was just what Amy needed to take a leap of faith and launch Cookie Fix. Soon after opening, Amy realized she had tapped into something special.
“I truly love cookies,” Amy says with audible joy. “I’m always coming up with new ideas, new creations, new names, new over-the-top techniques using our cookies.”
When it comes to baking an exceptional cookie, Amy says the secret is in the dough. While most cookies just have a top and bottom, Amy’s cookies have a full-bodied sweetness that often boasts double the chocolate chips, peanut butter, toffee, caramel, espresso chunks — or whatever other ingredient she chooses to toss into the mix.
“We’re all about crispy on the outside, gooey on the inside,” Amy explains. “And I like a lot going on. The more chunks and chips, the better.”
All it takes is one look — and one bite that’ll surely lead to several more — of Amy’s cookies to come to the conclusion that they’re not the norm. They sit high and are filled with complex and luscious flavor. Nothing about a Cookie Fix cookie is flat or boring — and that’s the way Amy likes it.
Along with a revolving cast of cookies — and new flavors almost every week — Cookie Fix offers “dough to-go” for those looking to bring the bake shop to their own kitchen oven.
“Because when it’s 9 o’clock at night, whether you have kids or if you’re just at the end of a long day, to have cookies come out of the oven — warm and gooey — it just doesn’t get any better than that,” Amy says.
Cookie Fix is located in downtown Homewood at 2854 18th St. South, Homewood, AL 35209. Hours are Monday through Friday, 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. For more information, call (205) 582-2623 or visit cookiefix.com.
This article is sponsored by Cookie Fix.