I had first read about the Crave Bakery on Kelly’s Celiac Chick site on and also on Shauna’s Gluten-free Girl Blog. That pumpkin pie looked scrumptious, so I was super excited when Crave Bakery , a wheat-free, gluten-free, dairy-free bakery in San Francisco, contacted me asking to send me samples.
I saw on their website that they make nut brownies in their facility, so I asked for some clarification about their nut-policies. Their email reply: "We are dedicated to catering to allergies and the people at our baking facility are trained to not cross contaminate our products. We always bake the least allergenic to most allergenic products in each production run. And practice ingredient and production isolation policies.” Excellent news, Crave Bakery ! On their easy to navigate
website, they fully disclose ingredients as well as nutritional information. Also excellent news!
“OK,” I said, “please send away”. The Crave goodies aren’t egg or sugar free so not for you egg allergic or sugar-free folks. However, this is a bakery that cares about the quality of all of their ingredients. From the Crave Bakery website:“Crave’s philosophy is based on choosing simple, high-quality and organic ingredients. You also won’t find any trans fat or preservatives in our goodies. We have taken the time to carefully research all of our ingredient sources and feel confident about their practices. Supporting small, local producers and family-owned operations as well as choosing ingredients that are animal conscious, are priorities for us.” Yay!
Crave Bakery sent two of their brownies and a lemon tart, all gluten-free and organic to boot.
The brownies are made with ground flax meal and I haven’t tested myself on flax before. So I gave those brownies to two tasters who gobbled them down.
--Taster One, who isn’t gluten-free, said: “Totally edible, not like, ‘oh no it’s gluten-free’.” Taster One thought the brownie was delicious, had the right balance of sugar and chocolate, was light but also fudge-y/cakey.
--Taster Two, who is on a gluten-free diet, said the brownie “... tasted totally 'normal' [as in NOT GF] and was gooey and rich”.
Here's the lemon tart, picture courtesy of Alexander Warnow:
The lemon tart didn’t disappoint. The filling was divine, it reminded me in texture to the Chinese egg custard tarts I ate as a child: yellow, eggy, sweet with great smooth mouthfeel. The crust was undercooked and raw tasting, but Taster Two and I like raw tasting dough. When I asked if I was supposed to bake the tart further upon receipt, here was Crave's reply: “The Lemon Tart should be eaten as is. I heard the same comment about the crust from one other person. I believe this particular batch was slightly less baked than we like it to be. Unfortunately, it sounds like you received one of these. Normally, the crust is a bit more golden.” No matter we loved it.
The upshot: the lemon tart was sinfully delicious and happily gluten-free. I would eat it, serve it, love to have it around for a treat and probably gain a pound or two if I lived in SF and went to Crave Bakery regularly. The brownies, although not tasted by me, were said to be delicious by two reliable tasters. The company has excellent transparent business practices, lists the ingredients and nutritional information both on the website and on the product and the staff is easy to get in touch with if you have further questions/concerns.
Thank you Crave Bakery!
San Francisco, CA