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Party Box offers mini cakes for health nuts

Cupcakes are growing in popularity, and Kathi Mitchell and Polly Sumner’s business, Party Box, is known for its cupcakes with a healthy twist.

The two hobbyist bakers offer “health nut” cupcakes to those looking for a sweet fix while watching calories, and especially to kids at Knox County schools.

Mitchell, a teacher for six years, is familiar with Knox County’s guidelines for food brought in by students and teachers. The guidelines seriously limit sweets brought in for birthday or end-of-year parties.

“The kids could not bring in anything homemade or anything store-bought for birthday parties,” Mitchell said.

“Knowing that, I said we needed to come up with something we could get into the schools with so these kids could have cupcakes on their birthdays … so we took all the guidelines from Knox County schools, from their nutrition policy,” Mitchell said.

“That’s what inspired it, and I like to eat healthy too,” she added.

The regular health nut cupcakes have about 100 calories and 4 grams of fat apiece. Mini health nut cupcakes have a quarter of those numbers. The cakes have chocolate, strawberry or vanilla bottoms and chocolate, vanilla, strawberry or lemon-whipped frosting.

Health nut cupcakes actually contain no nuts; the name is reflective of a “health nut” mentality.

“This is for the health nut in you … If you’re a health nut, there is a cupcake for you,” Mitchell said.

Party Box also offers traditional cupcakes in mini, regular and mammoth sizes, as well as 6-inch round cakes.

“We’ve done birthday parties, Bunko parties, church events, bachelorette parties … anything that you can imagine that would want cupcakes,” Mitchell said.

Mitchell and Sumner started the business earlier this year while looking for something to do from home.

“We both were wanting to do something from home and we both like to bake, so we thought, ‘Let’s try cupcakes; that sounds fun,’” Mitchell said.

Each of the partners bakes, although Mitchell classified herself as more involved on the business and marketing side of Party Box.

“We kind of found our niches that we like and then ran with it.

“We got started in February … We were just home-based, you know, doing things low key. Then Sprout Studios asked us if we would be interested in doing the cupcakes for their birthday parties,” Mitchell said.

“That was kind of our jump-start,” she added.

Party Box also sells their cupcakes at Kyra’s Nailtique in Bearden and caters.

Orders can be placed by phone or via e-mail and can be delivered (with a fee) to locations within Knox County or picked up from Kyra’s or Sprout Studios.

“Not having any location, we’re kind of flexible with that [delivery range],” Mitchell said.

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