Product Review: So Delicious Dairy Free Gluten-Free Cookie Dough Coconut Milk Frozen Dessert

So Delicious Dairy Free Gluten-Free Cookie Dough Coconut Milk Frozen Dessert
So Delicious Dairy Free Gluten-Free Cookie Dough Coconut Milk Frozen Dessert

Product: So Delicious Dairy Free Gluten-Free Cookie Dough Coconut Milk Frozen Dessert – $6.99+



Stare at the product listed above.

Did you figure out why I had to have this in my life?  Did you?

I’ll give you a hint.  Two words.

Not “dairy free” (although my stomach is thankful that it is)…not “gluten-free” (although…if I’m eating it, obviously it is).

Keep looking.  Ah…you saw it too?

COOKIE DOUGH!!!!!!!!!!!!

Are you aware that, growing up, cookie dough ice cream was my absolute favorite thing in life.  I mean, it blended two of my all-time favorite things in life…ice cream and cookies.  Not just cookies…but that soft, rich cookie dough that everyone (save me) just ate out of the bowl.  I love the ice cream…we were just never a cookie dough out of the bowl kind of family.  But…COOKIE DOUGH ICE CREAM THAT IS VEGAN AND GLUTEN-FREE!!!

Yes…that is in my freezer.  In fact…two pints of it are in my freezer.  HA!

The ice cream itself is actually labeled to be a “frozen dessert,” as technically it doesn’t contain any cream…but…we all know it’s ice cream.  Made by the coconut milk people, So Delicious (a brand and name I trust!), makers of much epic goodness!  Seriously, I’ve yet to find a product of theirs that hasn’t just been amazing!  They are called So Delicious for a reason.  That’s quite the reputation to live up to…but they do it with style!

This product is just what it sounds like…a vanilla coconut milk based ice cream that is packed with gluten-free cookie dough chunks and crispy chocolate flakes.  Happy memories flooded my mind as i pulled this out of the freezer and let it sit on the counter for about 10 minutes.  When you have dairy-free ice cream, you need to let the it sit out to thaw a little so it’s easy to scoop.  Just…trust me on this.  I am a pro.  I haven’t indulged in cookie dough ice cream in ages.  And I really haven’t since I had to go gluten-free three years ago.  SO…EXCITED!

As it is mega hot and stupid humid outside…ice cream just sounded amazing.  Ice cream always sounds amazing though.  I grew up in New York and ate ice cream year round…even when it was negative something degrees outside.  Ice cream is just one of my comfort foods.  And, trust me, not all dairy-free varieties are up to par.

But this one is.  I never doubted it since it was made by So Delicious.  In fact, I found it to be really good.  You can’t even taste the coconut in the base.  It just tastes like a light vanilla ice cream.  The gluten-free cookie dough balls give this great body and texture.  I loved getting to one of the hunks of cookie dough and letting it melt for a moment on my tongue.  Mmmm…

…must not raid freezer for other pint…

And the flakes of chocolate give it a great crunch as well.  That’s the key to cookie dough ice cream…creamy, gooey, crunchy, sweet, and a bit of salt (from the dough).  It’s the most magical ice cream, because it literally can trip every switch on your taste buds.  Mmmm…

…put the spoon down…

As you can guess…I LOVED IT!

Let’s take a look at what So Delicious pours into their So Delicious Dairy Free Gluten-Free Cookie Dough Coconut Milk Frozen Dessert (which is a tasty mouthful…literally!), shall we?  The ingredients are listed as containing: organic coconut milk, organic dried cane syrup, cookie dough (made from rice flour), chicory root extract, chocolate flake, carob bean gum, guar gum, natural vanilla flavor.

How’s that for ingredients, eh?  And remember, this ice cream is vegan, gluten-free, non-GMO, and kosher.

As for nutrition…well…it’s ice cream.  A fantastic dairy-free ice cream…but still ice cream.  A serving of the So Delicious Dairy Free Gluten-Free Cookie Dough Coconut Milk Frozen Dessert is 1/2 cup.  This serving will dish up 170 calories and 9 grams of fat.  Do not freak out over the fat.  Yes…some of it is from the “dough” part of this ice cream…but some of it is the healthy kind that you find in the coconut milk.  This ice cream is cholesterol free, contains only 35 mg sodium and 16 grams of sugar.  Yeah…that is a lot of sugar.  But…it’s a treat.  A serving will also provide you with 7 grams of fiber and 1 gram of protein.

As I tuck the pint back into the freezer and lick my bowl clean…I just want to reiterate how happy this frozen dessert made me.  I can’t thank So Delicious enough for putting a dairy-free and gluten-free cookie dough ice cream out on the market.  I’ve been craving cookie dough ice cream for years now…and finally…I have the liberty to indulge.

As you can tell…that’s never a problem with me!  If you haven’t tried the So Delicious Dairy Free Gluten-Free Cookie Dough Coconut Milk Frozen Dessert…then you’re missing out.  So get to your grocery store and snag yourself a pint.  It’s a taste of cookie heaven in a creamy, dreamy ice cream base.  It’s…all that is good in life!  It is, simply put, amazing.

And yes…so delicious!  (See what I did there? So clever!)

A serving of So Delicious Dairy Free Gluten-Free Cookie Dough Coconut Milk Frozen Dessert
A serving of So Delicious Dairy Free Gluten-Free Cookie Dough Coconut Milk Frozen Dessert

Product Review: Annie May’s Sweet Café Vegan Gluten-Free Pizza Crust

Annie May's Sweet Café
Annie May’s Sweet Café

Product: Annie May’s Sweet Café Vegan Gluten-Free Pizza Crust – $7.50

Forget hitting up the grocery stores on Saturday.  I think all I need to do now is hit up that new freezer at Annie May’s Sweet Café on Frankfort Avenue in Louisville, Kentucky.  Honestly.  Because, for me, it’s a one-stop shopping extravaganza of everything I have ever loved to eat at her bakery…or taken home with me.

And that was the entire point of the newest feature in Annie May’s Sweet Café.  Simple, safe, gluten-free take-n-bake items that are prepared and frozen…and all you have to do is follow the simple instructions on the label to cook up all the deliciousness in the comfort of your own home.  Let me tell you, I was thrilled to hear that this was being added to the bakery…and now that I have bought a few items from the freezer…let me tell you…I hope this catches on and they have to expand.  Because…with the garlic bread, the mac and cheese, and the pizza crust…I was set for three meals this week.  Simplicity…yet with the high quality and amazing flavor you get in all of Annie May’s products.

Annie May's Sweet Café Vegan Gluten-Free Pizza Crust
Annie May’s Sweet Café Vegan Gluten-Free Pizza Crust

Having already feasted on the Vegan Garlic Bread and the Macaroni and Cheese earlier this week…that left one of the take-n-bake purchases in my freezer.  And tonight…it was dinner.  I’m talking about the best pizza crust in the world.  No exaggeration there either.  And not just a gluten-free pizza crust…but THE BEST in the world.  Seriously.  I’ve eaten a lot of regular…and now a ton of gluten-free crusts and nothing has topped this one.  Nothing.  Nowhere.  No way!  I don’t think it will ever happen.

Want to know why?  Because…it is not a cracker crust or some thin little sheet of dough that ends up soggy.  This is a substantial, it can hold any and all toppings, sort of crust.  It is the crust to end all crusts.  It is the Godzilla of gluten-free pizza crusts.  It is…REALLY amazing.  And I don’t know how she does it, but I’m glad she does.  Because whenever I eat a pizza at Annie May’s…my day just gets better.  My life just gets better.  This crust is legendary.  Honestly.  You’d never even know it was gluten-free.  And now…now…I can make it in the comfort of my own home!

And that’s what I did tonight!

Annie May's Sweet Café Vegan Gluten-Free Pizza Crust (frozen)
Annie May’s Sweet Café Vegan Gluten-Free Pizza Crust (frozen)

I had a request from Cathy…for a pizza I haven’t made in forever.  She wanted…the Meditenuttian Pizza.  I know what you’re thinking…”What the what is a Meditenuttian Pizza?”  Well, let me explain.  It’s a pizza crust, that is given a brushing of olive oil, then a sprinkling of black pepper, then a drizzle of honey.  Then, I top mine with vegan mozzarella shreds, caramelized onions, walnuts, and then…I wilt something green over the top in the last minute or so of cooking.  Tonight…it was kale.  If you can handle dairy…feta or goat cheese is good crumbled over the top as well.

So…here it is.  I preheated the oven to 450°F and prepped the pizza crust per instructions, placing it and the parchment paper that is included on a baking sheet.  I topped it off with everything (except the kale) and popped it in the oven for about 15 minutes.  I pulled it out to put the kale on top and popped it back in the oven for about another minute.  Then…just like that…dinner was served.

My Meditenuttian Pizza baked on Annie May's Sweet Café Vegan Gluten-Free Pizza Crust
My Meditenuttian Pizza baked on Annie May’s Sweet Café Vegan Gluten-Free Pizza Crust

And, let me tell you…the frozen crust you take home to bake is just as delicious as the pizza crust served when I order in the café on either Friday or Saturday.  It has this doughy, thick texture to it, much like the “real” crusts everyone else can get in restaurants.  I’ve never had gluten-free crust like this.  When it is so reminiscent of the pizza I used to be able to eat…that is saying something.  No cracker crust.  Nothing that crumbles.  This is honest-to-goodness damn good pizza crust.  Not only can you buy a plain crust, but you can also purchase frozen already done up vegan and gluten-free pizzas that you can pop into your oven.  No need to add your own toppings…she has done it for you.  I might try that next time.  But…for me…it’s all about that crust.  That amazing Annie May’s pizza crust.

For the record, Annie May’s pizza crust is completely allergen free.  According to the label, it contains millet flour, sorghum flour, tapioca starch, quinoa flour, water, egg replacer, agave nectar, xanthan gum, salt, and cream of tartar.

This is a 9 ounce pizza crust.  My roomie and I split the pizza (as we do at the bakery whenever we order a pizza) and it is filling.  Filling…but heavenly.  A slice of gluten-free pizza heaven.  I guarantee you won’t find a better crust out there.  And I’m glad I can now take it home with me!  And I just might…weekly!

Half of my Meditenuttian Pizza baked on Annie May's Sweet Café Vegan Gluten-Free Pizza Crust
Half of my Meditenuttian Pizza baked on Annie May’s Sweet Café Vegan Gluten-Free Pizza Crust

Restaurant Review: Rockstone Wood Fired Pizza and Pub, Fishers, Indiana

Rockstone Wood Fired Pizza & Pub, Fishers, Indiana
Rockstone Wood Fired Pizza & Pub, Fishers, Indiana

Restaurant: Rockstone Wood Fired Pizza & Pub, Fishers, Indiana

Twas the night before a half marathon…

…so…in other words…gluten-free pizza night!

About a week before setting out to Fishers, Indiana, to run the Geist Half Marathon (for training), I started a full-on search for good gluten-free pizza in that area.  I’m spoiled rotten by my local allergen-free bakery, Annie May’s Sweet Café, because her pizza crust is actually a thick crust…not this thin cracker crust you get everywhere else.  I always crave her pizza and went on a search to, perhaps, find a place that was comparable to the one she makes.

No luck.

Cracker crust everywhere I turn.


So…I tossed it out on my Facebook page for some suggestions.  I wanted to try somewhere new…somewhere I couldn’t easily go here in Louisville.  So no Puccini’s and no Mellow Mushroom (although…yum to Mellow Mushroom!).  I didn’t want to go somewhere I already had gone up there to try…so no Monical’s or Jockamo’s.  Some of my friends in my running group were, unknown to me at the time, also running Geist…and Laura said they were going to hit up Rockstone Wood Fired Pizza & Pub in Fishers on Friday night for their dinner.  And she saw they had a gluten-free menu as well.

I went to check it out, along with two other places that I researched via Find Me Gluten Free.

In the end, due to being conveniently close to the hotel…Rockstone Wood Fired Pizza & Pub was where Cathy and I decided the night-before-the-race pizza would happen.  And…as an added bonus, my good friend, Julia, was going to meet us there for dinner.  YAY!

I’ve had a lot of misses on the gluten-free pizza as of late while on the road.  So, I was desperately hoping that this pizza was good.  And…after getting caught in some storms on the drive up to Fishers, then getting stuck in traffic, hitting up the race expo for packet pickup, and then getting caught in more traffic, we finally made it to the restaurant, where Julia got us a table in the bar and was patiently waiting…and had been for about 30 minutes (damn traffic).  Lots of hugs and a quick browse of the menu…and we were set.

The inside of Rockstone Wood Fired Pizza & Pub is dark…but beautiful.  It’s very rustic chic.  And I thought the ambiance was perfect for a pizza/pub.  It just felt right and comfortable.  Our waitress came over…and I gave her fair warning of my food allergies.  She put any of my fears to rest and assured me that they would cook me up a good pizza.  So, with our minds made up…the order was placed.

Cathy and I were going to split the 10″ Gluten-Free Vava Veggie Pizza ($12.00 – which includes the $1.50 up-charge for gluten-free crust).  Julia was on the same wavelength and got the regular wood fired version of the Vava Veggie Pizza ($10.50).  With the orders in, we were able to sit and talk while we waited for out food.  A short time later, our pans of pizza were being settled in front of us.

The Rockstone Wood Fired Pizza & Pub’s Gluten-Free Vava Veggie Pizza is done on a custom gluten-free cracker crust.  Very thin crust…crunchy…you know the drill.  The pizza itself is topped off with roma tomatoes, fresh basil pesto, crimini mushrooms, red and green bell peppers, broccoli, house tomato sauce, and mozzarella cheese.  It was very colorful and smelled absolutely delicious.

Our pizza, however, was a little lopsided.  One half was coated with veggies, the other half had a lot of plain cheese.  As I don’t handle dairy too well, I took a supplement and then took the slices with more veggies than cheese showing.  That was fine by Cathy.  I think sometimes she only tolerates the veggies that I get on my vegetarian pizzas.  But…she dug in first.

First of all…the crust was cooked all the way through.  That…was a huge plus.  YAY!  It had a nice crispness to the crust.  The vegetable were fresh and added both savory and sweet aspects to the slices itself.  I loved the mushrooms, finding them cooked perfectly through.  Cathy fell in love with the pesto that was on the pizza.  And each slice was packed with fresh veggie goodness, which I appreciated.  But…I did notice how wet the pizza got soon after we dove into our first slices.  I think it was the blend of tomatoes with the tomato sauce and basil…but it got a bit soggy after a short time.  Which…made me sad. I love that crispness to the crust that pizza should have.  Ah well…I polished off my half of the pizza regardless, giving each of my slices a liberal sprinkle with the crushed red pepper flakes.  Mmmm.

All-in-all, not bad.  Really.  Not bad.  In fact, I’d be more than happy to eat here again and try something else.  I hear the gluten-free bread they make their sandwiches on is fantastic (thanks for the insight, Tammy!).  If anything, I was most disappointed by the appearance (veggies were SO off-kilter!) and the way it just sort of got soggy after a moment of sitting while we ate.  But…it was cooked through.  The cheese was melted.  The veggies were cooked to perfection and tasted fresh.  I was content.  I felt good.

And…it must have worked because this gluten-free pizza fueled me all the way to a new half marathon personal record!

Julia seemed really happy with her wood-fired pizza…and the crust looked absolutely fantastic on her slices.  I admit…I had crust envy.

If you find yourself in the Fishers area, I highly recommend Rockstone Wood Fired Pizza & Pub for your lunch or dinner plans. They have everything from salads to pizzas to sandwiches…and even dessert.  I toyed with the idea of getting gelato…but I opted against it in the end.  But…trust me…this is a great place and they were very careful with the preparation of my food.  And for that, I am eternally grateful.

I will definitely be back.  Next time…I think I’ll try a sandwich!

Rockstone Wood Fired Pizza & Pub's Gluten-Free Vava Veggie Pizza
Rockstone Wood Fired Pizza & Pub’s Gluten-Free Vava Veggie Pizza

Restaurant Review: zpizza, Denver, Colorado

zpizza, Denver, Colorado
zpizza, Denver, Colorado

Restaurant: zpizza, Denver, Colorado

I want to tell you a story about two different pizza places.

While at the convention in Denver, Colorado, I wanted to order a pizza for dinner one night.  While I did have a rental car, parking was a bitch on Saturday night and if my roomie or I left the hotel, we’d have to pay for parking elsewhere (as our spot would be gone!) and as guests of the hotel, that just didn’t seem right.  So, I pulled out my iPhone and pulled up my Find Me Gluten Free app to search for nearby places that would deliver pizza.  The first place that caught my attention was the place recommended to us by the guy at The Gluten Escape Bakery on Friday.  NICE!  The place…Pizza Doodle.  Not only did they offer gluten-free pizza…but gluten-free garlic bread too.  I was one happy girl.  I never get to have garlic bread while eating pizza.  I mean…I was on top of the world.  My app said they were about 7 miles away…so, I called in an order for the Gluten-Free Garlic Bread and a 9-inch Gluten-Free Tree Hugger Pizza (that would be pesto sauce, onion, garlic, artichoke hearts, and roasted red peppers on what their menu advertised as THE BEST GF CRUST!).  I made sure to order this with vegan cheese.  The lady took the order and my phone number and said it would be forty-five minutes.  Cathy and I decided to go wait outside for the pizza, and ended up waiting for well over an hour.  I finally called back and was told that they don’t deliver to the DTC.


I was starving and angry.  And really pissed off that they didn’t call (even though they claimed they did…I was holding my phone the entire time and it never rang once and I had no missed calls or messages).  All day I had been looking forward to gluten-free garlic bread…and now I wasn’t going to get it.  Cathy took my phone to find somewhere else to have pizza and I stormed off in tears (hunger + emotional wreck because I never get gluten-free garlic bread).

Cathy apparently found a place that could accomodate my diet…though without the garlic bread.  The place…zpizza!

Actually, she told the guy on the other end of the line the storry about what Pizza Doodle pulled and inquired as to if they did gluten-free garlic bread.  He said they did not, but he upgraded our pizza to a large for no extra cost.  They did the vegan cheese, so that was sufficient.  Although…it wasn’t what I wanted.

About thirty minutes later, my phone rang as I was in my friend, Marc Gunn’s, concert.  Cathy and I hurried out to meet the pizza delivery guy from zpizza, give him a nice tip, and thank him for the food.  We dashed up to the hotel room to finally eat.  I was so ready to dive in…but I remembered to get a picture for the blog.

Cathy ordered the Gluten-Free Napoli Pizza ($15.40 – with the cheese substitution and gluten-free crust) from zpizza.  This pizza is their gluten-free crust topped with tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, Mozzarella cheese (we got vegan though), basil, and a roasted garlic sauce.

She did good.

I was really disappointed to flip open the box and see the thin-crust that I always get with a gluten-free pizza (my local gluten-free bakery, Annie May’s Sweet Café, has spoiled me with their thick pizza crust!).  I might have pitched an unhappy fit over that, but I was still in garlic bread mode…and nothing was making me happy at that point.  With the photo for the blog out of the way…we dug in.

While the Gluten-Free Napoli Pizza from zpizza was not what I wanted…it was really, really good.  Okay, the crust was a bit of a disappointment, but I’m used to that cracker crust by now.  And, honestly, it wasn’t bad.  The tomatoes were fresh.  The basil was a nice seasoning touch.  And the vegan cheese was melted to perfection!  That’s not always easy to do…trust me.  The best part, however, was definitely the roasted garlic sauce.  That sauce made this pizza.  It was delicious.  I love a white pizza, and anything with garlic involved is going to immediately be my friend.  When Cathy said they upgraded us to a large, I told her the two of us wouldn’t be able to eat a large pizza.  But the two of us devoured that pizza.  Really…really quickly.   We were extremely hungry and I was an emotional mess and was now stuffing my face with each gluten-free slice I could get my hands on.  Epic pizza toppings for sure.  I’d be more than happy to order from zpizza again.  And, despite not being a gluten-free environment, they, like most pizza places that offer gluten-free crust, did a fine job of not cross-contaminating anything.  I didn’t get sick.  And the pizza was a dream come true.  I wanted to hate it since there was no gluten-free garlic bread…but there was nothing to dislike about this pizza.  Fantastic!

Where Pizza Doodle, although highly recommended, failed…zpizza triumphed.  I thank them from the bottom of my gluten-free heart for the delivery to the hotel.  I was beyond upset with Pizza Doodle and it was nice to have a place step in and make things awesome again.  The pizza was stellar.  The toppings were fresh.  And I was pleasantly full as I polished off the last slice of my half of the pizza.  Although they didn’t have to, they felt bad for what happened to us with the other pizza place and gave us an upgrade free of charge.  That’s great business right there.

I’ll order from them again in a heartbeat!

zpizza's Gluten-Free Napoli Pizza with Vegan Cheese
zpizza’s Gluten-Free Napoli Pizza with Vegan Cheese

Product Review: Conte’s Gluten-Free Potato and Onion Pierogi

Conte's Gluten-Free Potato and Onion Pierogi
Conte’s Gluten-Free Potato and Onion Pierogi

Product: Conte’s Gluten-Free Potato and Onion Pierogi – $6.99+

Dear Gluten-Free Gods of Food and Consumables:


Seriously…from the bottom of my gluten-free, vegetarian, foodie heart…THANK YOU!!

Thank you for bringing a company like Conte’s to the gluten-free world.  Because, my dear Gods of Awesomesauce…Conte’s hasn’t failed me yet on foods that I used to be able to eat and thought were off limits…until they turned up in a freezer section somewhere.  The world just seems right again.  And I couldn’t imagine my gluten-free life without Conte’s in it.  For real.

So…again…THANK YOU!!


Honestly…my love letter about Conte’s could go on and on and on and on and on and on and on…

But I’ll stop there because there is a reason I am falling all over myself to praise this company and their foods.  Because they made me able to eat pierogies again.  Yes…pierogies.  Those little pockets of potato…delicious.  I ate the hell out of them growing up.  They were one of my favorite side dishes to eat with my dinner.  And when I went gluten-free…I attempted to make them once.  It wasn’t an epic fail…but it wasn’t a complete success either.

Conte’s did the hard part for me.  I just didn’t know these even existed until I was taken to this great little natural food store in Columbus, Ohio…called The Raisin Rack…by my friend Jenn.  Oh…the trouble and budget-busting I got into there.  I might have broken my roommate’s wallet.  But she did, in all fairness, hand me a basket and tell me to fill it up.  Jenn said we could “Tetris the shit out of that” and so we did.  And with it…frozen foods.  This meant getting a cooler too…but that was no biggie.

In the frozen section I spotted this teal bag…and it was Conte’s (who makes the awesome cheese ravioli I use all the time).  But these weren’t ravioli.  No, no, my dear readers.  This was so much better than ravioli.  This was GLUTEN-FREE PIEROGIES!!!  You better believe that bag went into the basket.  Along with other things.  And I might have carried a few items too…and cheated a little.  But…I got away with it in the end.  HA!

Well…fast forward to returning home from a weekend away.  No CSA bin this week because we were out of town.  BOOO!  Also, making up hours at work meant long work days and staying late.  So, the other night, the roomie and I got home and I went to find something easy to make from either the pantry, fridge, or freezer.  My roommate originally said she wanted pasta…but she came back out to the kitchen and said…

“I want the pierogies.”

I was hoping she would say that.  Secretly.

So…out came a big pan, which I filled with water and seasoned with salt.  I brought it up to a boil and soon added the Conte’s Gluten-Free Potato and Onion Pierogies.  I gave them a stir and let them cook away, stirring occasionally, for about 8 minutes.  As they boiled away, I got out my sautée pan and melted a tablespoon of butter.  I drained the pierogies and then carefully placed them into the pan to let them get a bit of a crunch on them.  I always remember my mom cooking ours in a skillet as well.  I love that rich, buttery crust that adds a bit of flavor to the little pillows of potato.  Mmmm…

They smelled amazing as they cooked away.  I flipped them over after a couple of minutes, not wanting to burn them, and cooked the other side.  Then…I dished them up and dinner was served.

My roommate actually beat me to the first bite.  And she was a huge fan.  This definitely bode well in my eyes.  I settled into my plate and took a bite too.

Fantastic.  Great texture.  Amazing flavor.  I loved how the dough was soft, but had that nice crust on it from the pan fry that I gave it.  The potato and onion filling was seasoned perfectly.  It was everything I remember pierogies being…which was so good.  So very good.  I devoured these…in record time, I do believe.  And I kept reminiscing about my mom preparing pierogies for us…and how much I loved them.  And now, thanks to Conte’s…I can once again.  And I am beyond impressed with how these turned out.  They are a bit delicate…so be prepared for them to start to fall apart.  But…that’s not unusual for gluten-free products such as this.  The main thing was…they were awesome.  And I am one happy girl…hoping to be able to find these…somewhere…locally.

Let’s talk ingredients, shall we?  Conte’s Gluten-Free Potato and Onion Pierogies are made from a gluten-free flour mix (rice flour, corn starch, tapioca dextrin, xanthan gum), eggs, water, salt, vegetable oil, potatoes, onions, water, salt, and black pepper.  That’s it.  Seriously.  Clean eating in a package!  These are gluten-free, wheat free and casein free.  They are also made in a dedicated gluten-free facility.

As for the nutrition facts…a serving size is 4 ounces, or 4 pierogies.  This serving will give you 180 calories and 1.5 grams of fat.  These gluten-free pierogies also serve up 45 mg cholesterol, 110 mg sodium, and 1 gram of sugar.  Seriously…not bad.  You also are provided with 3 grams of fiber and 3 grams of protein.  Trust me…you will feel full.  My roommate and I split the bag and it made for a perfect size dinner.  Perfectly delicious!!

I hope that I can find these in a local store, because I’m already craving them again.  If not…I know where to get them in Columbus…but I don’t get up there often enough to satisfy my want of gluten-free pierogies.  Believe me…now that I’ve had them…it’s all I want.

Conte’s wins  me over once again with their amazing product.  If you can find Conte’s Gluten-Free Potato and Onion Pierogies…buy them.  Make them.  Devour them.  But do enjoy them.  Because…trust me…you will!!

Conte's Gluten-Free Potato and Onion Pierogies
Conte’s Gluten-Free Potato and Onion Pierogies

Recipe: Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free Chocolate Chip Yogurt Quick Bread

My refrigerator has something incredible in it.  Really.

I have these cartons of So Delicious Dairy Free Unsweetened Cultured Coconut Milk.

Let me tell you…these were the most fantastic yogurts to ever enter into my life.  And I was feeling the need to bake last night.  Using a guide recipe from Gluten-Free on a Shoestring, I baked up what is turning out to be one of my favorite breads I have ever made.  Made with Enjoy Life Mini Chocolate Morsels, Better Batter Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour, and So Delicious Dairy Free Unsweetened Cultured Coconut Milk, this is a recipe that will wow your friends and family.  You might even surprise yourself with how moist and delicious this bread is when it is baked and cooled and finally…sliced.  All of this was from scratch and, as luck would have it, I had everything necessary already in my apartment.  Check out the recipe below.

Recipe: Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free Chocolate Chip Yogurt Quick Bread

Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free Chocolate Chip Yogurt Quick Bread
Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free Chocolate Chip Yogurt Quick Bread

Servings: 12-16
Time: Prep 20 minutes; Bake 50 minutes


  • 1-3/4 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour (I used Better Batter)
  • 6 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if your blend already contains it)
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature (I used Earth Balance)
  • 1 cup plain yogurt, at room temperature (I used So Delicious Dairy Free Unsweetened Cultured Coconut Milk)
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature, beaten
  • 3 ounces miniature chocolate chips, tossed with 1 teaspoon cornstarch (I used Enjoy Life Semi-Sweet Mini Chocolate Chips)


Preheat oven to 350°F.  Grease well a standard 9-inch by 5-inch loaf pan and set it aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large bowl with a hand mixer), place the flour blend, cornstarch, xanthan gum, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar, and whisk to combine well with a separate, handheld whisk.  Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients, and add the butter, yogurt and eggs.  Mix on medium speed to combine with the paddle attachment (or your handheld mixer) after each addition.  The batter will be thick.  Add the chocolate chips tossed with cornstarch, and mix with a spatula or spoon until the chips are evenly distributed throughout the batter.  Scrape into the prepared baking pan and, with wet hands, smooth the top.  To create a dome shape, run a wet spatula along the edges of the pan and pull the batter toward the center.  For a uniform split down the center as the bread rises in the oven (instead of a more haphazard split), slash down the center of the loaf with a sharp knife, about 1/4-inch deep.

Place the pan in the center of the preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes.  Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F, and continue to bake for another 20 minutes, or until the top of the loaf springs back when pressed lightly and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with, at most, a few moist crumbs attached.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the loaf pan for 15 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.  Slice once cool and serve.


You will love this bread.  Light, moist, and packed with flavor.  And using the Unsweetened Cultured Coconut Milk meant adding flavor without the added sugar.  It was fantastic.  And the bread…definitely one of my new favorites.  This is amazing.  I can’t wait to make more breads using the Cultured Coconut Milk.  Fantastic.

Chocolate chip bread-y love!

Product Review: Immaculate Baking Company Gluten Free Chocolate Chunk Cookies

The Immaculate Baking Company Gluten Free Chocolate Chunk Cookies
The Immaculate Baking Company Gluten Free Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Product: Immaculate Baking Company Gluten Free Chocolate Chunk Cookies – $5.49+

My friend Jenn knows the way to my heart.  She knows what can lift my spirits.  She knows how to get me to smile.

Three words.

Gluten Free Cookies.

Yep.  That does it every time.  And this past weekend, when I went up to visit and escape my real life where I live for awhile, she totally lifted my spirits and helped me find that smile that has been absent during this winter year.  And that was before the cookies were even mentioned.

Saturday was a busy day…and one that included many culinary adventures.  But, as the night was winding down and before we all settled in to watch Despicable Me 2, we (being Jenn, Cathy and I) quickly made our way to the kitchen because we were celebrating Jenn’s birthday and cookies had to be had.  For real.  Out of the freezer she pulled a package of Immaculate Baking Company Gluten Free Chocolate Chunk Cookies.  I think I might have salivated immediately.

Cookie monster, remember?

Anyway…we knew these wouldn’t take too long to cook, so we got right to work, preheating the oven to 325°F and prepping a baking sheet with parchment paper.  I tore into the cookie dough package and removed the tray of 12 balls of dough.  From there, Jenn and I began to remove the cookie dough and place the little balls of chocolate chip gluten-free joy onto a baking pan, about 2 inches apart.  When the oven was up to the proper heat, we popped the pan inside and let it cook for 16 minutes.

Immaculate Baking Company Gluten Free Chocolate Chunk Cookie Dough
Immaculate Baking Company Gluten Free Chocolate Chunk Cookie Dough

Longest 16 minutes ever.  The three of us had a little snack of Jenn’s homemade pink salad…while we were waiting…because it seemed logical.  And, for the last five minutes, we all just sort of stared at the timer…eagerly awaiting our chocolate chip treats.  Except we were cooking from frozen, we gave them a little longer, but not much.  When we removed them, they were golden balls of cookie dough, because we didn’t pay attention to the part of the baking instructions that said to flatten the cookie before shoving it in the oven.  Whoops.  No worries.  We now had to let the cookies sit for another 5 minutes.  That was sheer torture, because now the kitchen smelled like chocolate chip cookies.  As those five minutes finished, Jenn scooped a cookie off the sheet to plate it.  Then she said the most glorious words ever (and honestly is one of so many reasons she and I get along so well) when she exclaimed, “Screw this one cookie thing! We’re each getting two!”

There were no arguments.  At least not from Jenn or I.  Cathy might have looked a little bit startled but she happily complied to the 2 cookie vote.

I won’t lie.  I was the first person to take a bite.  It was still very soft in the middle…not raw…but close.  We probably should have let them cook a wee bit longer since we were cooking them from their frozen state.  But…they were really good.  The cookie dough was fantastic.  I loved the buttery flavor of the cookie itself and, even more, the sweetness from the chocolate chunks that were throughout the cookies.  They didn’t skimp on the chocolate, and I appreciate that so much!  I love that no bite was without a bit of chocolate.  The flavor actually reminded me of these large cookies that my school district offered from K-12 grades that were soft and chewy and just above that half-baked level.  They tasted so much like that and it brought back some really happy memories.  I enjoyed these so much.  I might have licked the crumbs off the plate.

The next day, Jenn sent Cathy and I on our way with two more for each of us.  I found that I liked them even more on the second day.  I might have gotten a little hungry halfway home so we had a bit of a snack.  One part of this snack was one of the cookies.  Soft in the middle.  Chewy.  No hard bites that break your teeth.  Still amazing and delicious.  YUMMY!  I might be addicted to these.  The other two were consumed as dessert after dinner that night.  And I once again reminisced about how good they were…how amazing they tasted…but now…they were gone.

Immaculate Baking Company Gluten Free Chocolate Chunk Cookies are made from semisweet chocolate, palm fruit and canola oils, brown sugar, potato starch, tapioca starch, sugar, rice flour, whole eggs, invert sugar, water, natural flavor, xanthan gum, baking soda, and guar gum.  No crazy ingredients that make me question what they might be doing in food…or foody treats like cookies.  These cookies are also completely dairy-free as well.

Now let’s talk nutrition.  I know…cookies.  Cookies are treats and really not nutritionally sound…but…COOKIES!  This from a true cookie monster.  Let’s remember…everything in moderation.  And if you stick to the serving size, these really aren’t too bad on the nutrition scale.  A serving is 1 cookie.  This cookie will give you 150 calories and 8 grams of fat.  This serving will also provide you with 10 mg sodium, 85 mg sodium and 11 grams of sugar.  Yes…that is a lot of sugar.  About 3 teaspoons per serving, actually.  But, remember…cookies.  These are cookies.  Finally, one cookie provides you with less than 1 gram of fiber and 1 gram of protein.  So, these aren’t made to be filling.  And with all that sugar, they won’t be.  But…yeah…they are beyond tasty.

I love that Immaculate Baking Company has a few gluten-free options in their product lineup.  Honestly.  Even more…I am beyond impressed with the way the Immaculate Baking Company Gluten Free Chocolate Chunk Cookies baked up and came out.  Yes…even with the misstep on our part for baking time.  They are really delicious with great flavor and at least a chunk of chocolate in each bite.  I want to fill my freezer with these and cook them all the time.

Consider this cookie monster hooked!

Immaculate Baking Company Gluten Free Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Immaculate Baking Company Gluten Free Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Restaurant Review: Village Tavern, Birmingham, Alabama

Village Tavern, Birmingham, Alabama
Village Tavern, Birmingham, Alabama

Restaurant: Village Tavern, Birmingham, Alabama

I’m so disappointed.

I know…any blog that starts with those three words can’t be good, right?  Right.

And, sadly enough, that’s the way of it when it comes to Village Tavern in Birmingham, Alabama.

First of all, finding a restaurant in the South for gluten-free food is not always easy.  There are some, but when you are craving gluten-free pizza…when you require it…well…things can get a bit tricky.

But, after a little research, Cathy and I found Village Tavern in Birmingham, Alabama for the recent journey down there.  I was going to have a great dinner out with my sister, her youngest son, and a great friend of mine…Michelle!

The company at dinner was great.  I hadn’t seen Michelle since I left Alabama eight years ago.  She hasn’t changed a bit.  She’s still bubbly with the best laugh ever.  And my sister…well…she really made it a fantastic night tonight.  I always enjoy my time with my sister.  There isn’t enough of it in my life.  But…tonight…I got her and her youngest son and that was awesome.

So, the five of us total were seated and given our drinks.  We all had water.  Hydration, friends.  Always water.  Then…after a little back and forth, we were ready to order.  My sister opted for the Chicken Quesadilla ($7.95), which came with a salsa and a dipping sauce as well.  She got my four year old nephew the kids Cheese Pizza ($4.95)…which is HUGE for a child, honestly.  He loved it.  Even said it was the best pizza he ever had.  Adorable.

Michelle got the Spring Rolls ($8.95), which she seemed to like.  They weren’t what I was expecting honestly.  But they sure did look good.  With that she got a side Mixed Greens Salad ($4.95).

Cathy and I chose to split a Gluten-Free Margherita Pizza ($8.75), which is a 10-inch pizza.  Usually that’s the standard for a restaurant.  And she got the Tavern Salad ($8.50) to go with it as she hadn’t had any vegetables all day.  I opted for a side of the Broccoli ($4.00).  And that was that…orders in.  We had the chance to sit, talk, catch up and all of that while we awaited the arrival of the food.  And when it came…it smelled fantastic.


The waiter knew Cathy and I were splitting the gluten-free pizza…and yet…no extra plate was brought out.  Secondly…the waiter forgot about Cathy’s salad.  In fact, he didn’t even put it on the ticket.  So…yeah…that had to be corrected.

But the greatest problem…the biggest offense…

My gluten-free pizza dough was RAW!  Like…gooey…uncooked rawness.  I was beyond disappointed.

While I was waiting on a plate, Cathy went ahead and started on her half of the pizza.  When my plate finally was brought to the table, well…it took two tries.  First one was a small plate…which was fine.  But soon after that was left for me…a larger, must better suited plate arrived at the table.  Fantastic.  Thank you.  Cathy dished up my half of the pizza and I picked up my fork and knife to slice through what I was expecting to be a crispy crust.  This was that infamous gluten-free cracker crust that all gluten-free pizzas have.  But there was no crunch.  No crispness.  Mushy…soggy…still stretchy doughiness.  Yes, doughiness is a word…because I used it in a sentence.  The disappointment on my face must have been evident because my sister and Michelle both were like…”Is it not good?”  I held up a piece of the dough and said…”It’s not cooked!”

The best part of the pizza was the crust on the edge…because that actually WAS crispy and cooked through.  I know with cracker crusts there is a fine line between crispy and burnt…but this was on a fine line of being fresh from the package and undercooked.  The toppings weren’t even that impressive.  The pizza was just REALLY disappointing overall.  I was not impressed.  Not happy.  And just MEH about the whole thing.

At least I had good company and good conversation.

I had it in my head to return to Village Tavern with my parents the following night, but I was so unhappy with that pizza, that I’m judging the rest of their gluten-free options based on that…and will find somewhere else to eat.  I don’t think I’ll ever be back.

Village Anchor's Gluten-Free Margherita Pizza (doughy disaster)
Village Anchor’s Gluten-Free Margherita Pizza (doughy disaster)

Product Review: Tastefully Simple Gluten-Free Beer Bread Mix

Tastefully Simple Gluten-Free Beer Bread Mix
Tastefully Simple Gluten-Free Beer Bread Mix

Product Review: Tastefully Simple Gluten-Free Beer Bread – $8.99

Let me give a big shout-out to Tastefully Simple consultant and a friend of mine from high school, Rebecca Fifield!  It is because of her that I have these products in the first place.  You see…back when I was in high school, I wasn’t gluten-free.  In fact…I don’t think anyone in my hometown even knew what a Celiac was.

It turns out that there is magic in the Interwebs…and thanks to the magic of social media…you reconnect with people.  That’s how Rebecca and I got back into touch.  And she, knowing I am Celiac and having to eat gluten-free now, sent me packets of Tastefully Simple’s new gluten-free line-up of mixes.

Well…it’s the New Year.  January 1st.  And my roommate and I have set a few goals for this coming year.  And we are wasting no time getting settled into the new routine.  That being said, tonight I was simply cooking up some black eyed peas with some kale for dinner.  I know that doesn’t sound gourmet, but some believe that eating black eyed peas on New Years Day will bring prosperity.  I’m all for that.  The recipe mentioned something about serving the meal with cornbread.  I don’t have cornbread and I didn’t have enough cornmeal in my pantry to rock out a batch of it from scratch.

That being said…I remembered I had these mixes ready for me to try.  So, I climbed up to the top shelf of my pantry and began to pull each one up until I found the one I was seeking.

Gluten-Free Beer Bread.

Yes.  Gluten-Free Beer Bread.  And…I just so happen to have gluten-free beer on hand.  I’m not a beer drinker, mind you, but I make a killer queso with it…so I tend to have it in the house in case.  So glad I did…because I was more than excited to get this bread cooking.

And guess what?  Tastfully Simple really is simple!!  This mix is super easy to put together.  I got down one 9 x 5 bread pan and buttered the inside.  Then, all I had to do was add to a large bowl…the mix, the gluten-free beer (or you can use soda), and 1 egg.  There is an option to add 3 tablespoons of melted butter…which I decided to do.

That’s it.  Whisk it together.  Pour it in the pan.  Drizzle the melted butter over the top (if you’re using it…but I highly recommend it).  Set it in a 350°F oven for about 50 minutes…and you have yourself a beautiful loaf of gluten-free beer bread.

YES!  It really is that easy!

Tastefully Simple Gluten-Free Beer Bread
Tastefully Simple Gluten-Free Beer Bread

What’s more…I was drooling as this was baking in my oven.  My apartment smelled (and still does) so amazing.  Fresh-baked bread is one of my favorite smells…but this aroma was beyond fantastic.  I resisted the urge to open the oven and sneak a peak the instant I started to smell it.  That being said…I allowed it to cook for a full 50 minutes, preparing the rest of dinner as it was finishing up.  And when my timer went off, I pulled a gorgeous, golden-crusted loaf of gluten-free bread out of my oven.  I turned it out of the pan…and it was perfect.

I let it cool slightly as I finished up the last of the black eyed peas and kale we were having for dinner.  I knew the bread needed to cool a bit more…but I was ready to dive in.  So, I sliced off two slices…one for me and on for my roommate.  It sliced beautifully, still steaming in the middle.  Fresh.  Hot.  Gluten-Free.  Bread.

Well, we settled in for our New Years Day feast and I immediately had to sink my teeth into the beer bread.

OH MY BREAD GODS!  No…this is, by far, one of the best gluten-free breads I have ever made in my kitchen.  The mix forms into this light, not dense, loaf of bread.  I think the carbonation from the beer helps with this.  The flavor is buttery, and light, and totally amazing.  The texture is perfect.  Not dense.  Not heavy.  And it’s soft…and the right amount of chewy.  It is gluten-free bread perfection.  I am going to have to order more of this from Rebecca…and stat!

Let’s talk ingredients now, shall we?  The Tastefully Simple Gluten-Free Beer Bread is a mix of rice flour, whey, sugar, potato starch, tapioca flour, baking powder, whey protein concentrate, cassava flour, brown sugar, salt, yeast extract, natural flavors, maltodextrin, and xanthan gum.  Not a bad mix of ingredients there.

As for nutrition…the way I prepared the bread…the stats would look like this:

This mix contains enough for 13 servings.  One serving of this bread would provide you with 138 calories and 3 grams of fat.  You would also have get only 6 grams of sugar, no fiber, and 3 grams of protein.  Amazing stats for bread, yes?  YES!

And…trust me when I say that this bread is really, really, really good.  Tastefully simple.  Tastefully gluten-free.  Tastefully devoured.

So, if you want to give it a try, hop on over to Rebecca’s Tastefully Simple Page ( and place an order now.  You won’t regret it.  I am so happy to have this in my life.  Thank you, Rebecca!  And thank you, Tastefully Simple!

Tastefully Simple Gluten-Free Beer Bread
Tastefully Simple Gluten-Free Beer Bread

Product Review: Katz Gluten Free All Purpose Dough

Katz Gluten Free All Purpose Dough
Katz Gluten Free All Purpose Dough

Product: Katz Gluten Free All Purpose Dough – $4.99

Dear Katz Gluten Free:

I love you.  I love you more and more with each product that I try.  From your breads to your pies to your amazing donuts, you continue to keep me coming back, order after order, no matter the cost.  You are that good.  And I love you that much.

But…you really outdid yourself with the ready-to-use Gluten-Free All Purpose Dough.

Because of you…I could have a calzone for dinner again.

Because of you…I can make my own delicious pies…without the hassle of making my own crust.

Because of you…the gluten-free community continues to get quality food products.  Ones that I will continue to purchase…not just for myself but others.

Add the All Purpose Dough to my list.

Yes…I love you.

All my gluten-free love,

Ease!  That’s the best part of this product.  It not only is peace of mind, but it’s so simple.  Thaw out dough.  Use.  No hassles.  No wondering if your own gluten-free concoction will cook up right.  This worked.  And it worked beautifully.

I’ve been wanting calzones for a long while now.  For real.  And with a plethora of vegetables that needed to be used up before the next CSA bin arrived, well, I figured I’d see how the dough would hold up to a little of my craving and baking magic.  I had this thought in my head that involved this dough, some squash, some crimini mushrooms, and some shallots.  I sauteed them up in a pan and added some marinara sauce as well.  All I needed now was the casing for the calzone.

Enter Katz Gluten Free All Purpose Dough.  I removed it from my freezer two days before.  The evening I was making the calzones, I cut out two very small pieces of dough, as it says it serves 8 and a serving size is only 2 ounces.  So…this was going to be a challenge.  But, I was up for it.  Using a rolling pin, I attempted to shape the dough into a large circle that wouldn’t break open when I added the filling and moved it to the baking sheet.  The first couple times, the dough was rolled too thin, so I knew these would be relatively small calzones.  I didn’t care.  I rolled out two very asymmetrical circles and piled in the filling on one half.  I carefully folded over the other half and did my best to crimp the small serving shut.  Sure, I could have used more dough, but I am so careful about serving sizes.  I stick to them.  I think next time I’ll throw caution in the wind and just add a little more.  But…I wanted to do it my way this time.  Into the oven the dough went…and when about 20 minutes passed, I opened up the oven and it was this gorgeous golden brown and the filling was sizzling (and peaking out of some holes in my dough).  Everything was ready.  Dinner was served.  And gluten-free calzones were on the menu.

Oh. Hell. Yes.

One bite…and I was hooked.  At first, it sort of reminded me of the crust of a potpie.  Golden and flaky and it sort of had that same texture and flavor.  But when you got a piece with the filling in it…magic.  Simple food magic.  The crust didn’t get soggy and held up to the marinara/vegetable mixture that I stuffed (and I mean literally stuffed) inside.  It was gluten-free and vegetarian food magic.  And it was made possible and easy because I took a chance with a new Katz product.  So easy.  So delicious.  I can’t wait to use it in other ways.

Katz Gluten Free Web site says the crust is perfect for pies, turnovers, knishes, or any other pasty imaginable.  It’s the go-to solution.  It’s what I (and other gluten-free foodies) need in their lives!  FOR REAL!

Katz Gluten Free All Purpose Dough is made from their own blend of gluten-free flour (which includes tapioca flour, white rice flour, sorghum flour, and corn flour), palm oil, water, eggs, sugar, salt, and xanthan gum.  Not a bad list of ingredients at all.  And that flour blend is pure magic.  Pure gluten-free food magic.

As for nutrition…there is a reason I stuck to the serving size.  A serving size is 2 ounces.  This serving (which is a small rectangle of the dough), will provide you with 260 calories and 18 grams of fat.  See why I wanted to stick to the serving size?  This serving also will give you 55 mg sodium and 2 grams of sugar.  Sadly, this dough does serve up about 9 grams of saturated fat and 35 mg cholesterol in each serving.  Another good reason to stick to the meager 2 ounce recommendation.  This dough also will give you 1 gram of fiber and 1 gram of protein.  So do not expect this dough to fill you up and leave you feeling full.  It won’t work that way.  But…that being said…it toasted up beautifully in calzone form on my pizza stone and made one delicious meal for me and my roommate.  We have 3 more servings each of this dough to use and I intend to see how many various ways I can use it.  I might attempt perogies next.

Yes, my dearest Katz Gluten Free…I do love you and your products.  You just make my life happy, full, and delicious again.  This All Purpose Dough will be something I’ll definitely consider using more of in the future. Simple.  And delicious.

Who could ask for anything more?

A gluten-free and vegetarian calzone made with Katz Gluten Free All Purpose Dough
A gluten-free and vegetarian calzone made with Katz Gluten Free All Purpose Dough