Carvel- Custom Ice Cream Cakes

My family has a tradition for celebrating big occasions. All birthdays, holidays, and other life achievements come with a Carvel ice cream cake (The featured image is from our recent Mother’s Day celebration). I grew up with a mother who is a phenomenal baker, and as an adult, my brother has found his passion for baking, and is a Culinary Institute of America trained pastry chef. However, none of this matters. When there is something to celebrate, the only way to do so is with a Carvel ice cream cake.

The standard ice cream cake comes with chocolate crunchies in the middle. While delicious, these are a big no-no for a gluten free individual. Upon becoming gluten free, the thought of losing one of my favorite, and most delicious, family traditions was unbearable. Luckily, I didn’t have to sacrifice anything, except those gluten-filled crunchies. With a few days notice, Carvel will make a custom ice cream cake. I recently learned that they can put substitute items in the middle of the cake, taking the place of the aforementioned crunchies. On Carvel’s website, they have an extensive list of their gluten free options, which I have included below. Carvel has always been able to easily accommodate me, and I love that with just a slight modification, I can still participate in a delicious family tradition.

Carvel’s Website:

Direct Link to Carvel’s Gluten Free Offerings:
(Scroll Down and click on “gluten”)

My Dad’s Cookies- Black & White

It had been a while since I had a really good black and white cookie. I used to love getting them as a treat, and would almost always pick one up when I’d see them on the counter of a deli, coffee shop, or elsewhere. However, once I became gluten free, I just could not find a good substitute for my once beloved treat.

Now notice I said “it had been”. This weekend, I found My Dad’s Cookies Gluten Free Black & White Cookies at my local Whole Foods. Not willing to give up my search quite yet, I decided to give them a try, and they are great!

The cookie was soft and cake-like. The texture was perfect, being a little bit dry but still soft, and the cookie held together well. The sponge cake cookie perfectly complimented the vanilla and chocolate coating. While the traditional gluten full cookies I remember have more of a topping, these cookies seemed to be dipped on either side, with chocolate and vanilla coating spilling over the edges. I really enjoyed this aspect of the cookie, and it made for a nice balance between the cake part of the cookie and the icing.

For more information, check out My Dad’s Cookies website:

Made Good Granola Minis

I have always been a snacker.  One of the first things I do when I come home is raid the cabinets and the fridge looking for something to eat.  After becoming gluten free, my snack choices took on a whole new level of importance.  Not only was I making new snack choices, I was looking for portable snacks to keep on me at all time.  Being gluten free means you always run the risk of being left without something to eat.  I have adapted a lifestyle where if I go out for an evening, I always have a backup plan.  That’s right, this gluten free gal will not be caught at a wedding without a gluten free and filling snack in my clutch.

Made Good’s Granola Minis are the prefect snack, and they’re packed in a way that makes them portable!  According to the company’s website, they are available in 5 flavors: Strawberry, Apple Cinnamon, Chocolate Banana, Chocolate Chip, and Mixed Berry.  I purchased the Granola Minis at Costco, where they came in a large package containing 20 individual portions.  The package was a mixed variety pack containing 10 Chocolate Chip packages and 10 Mixed Berry packages.  Not only are Made Good Granola Minis certified gluten free, they are also free from peanut, dairy, tree nuts, egg, soy, sesame, wheat, and fish and shellfish, making them extremely allergy friendly.  They are also certified vegan, kosher parve, organic, and non-GMO.

I love these Granola Minis!  When I bought them, I expected them to be very crunchy.  Instead, they are soft little bites of goodness!  The chocolate has a rich flavor, and the mixed berry has delicious fruit chunks.  They are great as a stand alone snack, or an addition to a breakfast or lunch.  I really enjoy eating them alongside a yogurt.  The portion size is perfect to satisfy my snack craving, and they are great for keeping in my bag, just in case.  I can’t wait to try the rest of Made Goods flavors.

More information about Made Good Granola Minis can be found on the company website:


Joan’s GF Great Bakes Gluten-Free English Muffins

Going gluten free changed me.  Not only did it change what I was eating, but it changed my interests, and what I found myself getting excited about.  Prior to being gluten free, bread was bread.  I loved it, it was a staple in my diet, but it was bread.  Now, “regular” bread is the enemy, but a good gluten free bread is something worth getting excited about.  That’s right, I get excited about finding a good gluten free bread, and searching for these products has become a bit of a hobby of mine.

One of the products I recently became very excited about is Joan’s GF Great Bakes Gluten-Free English Muffins.  You know a product is good when it is discovered by someone who is not gluten free, and they buy them to eat for themselves too.  Whole Foods was sampling the product when my mom discovered them.  They were so good, she immediately bought some for herself and me.  I have since repurchased these delicious muffins at my local Whole Foods many times.

These frozen English muffins are perfect!  The flavor is spot on, and they maintain the texture you would want from a traditional English muffin.  Once toasted, the muffin has the perfect crunch on the outside, and I love eating these alongside scrambled eggs for a filling breakfast.  I’ve also used them to make breakfast sandwiches, or just toasted them to have as a snack.  After toasting the muffin, I have topped with many things like butter, cream cheese, jelly, (not all together!) and the muffin has held its firmness without getting soggy, like many gluten free breads do.  This is a great product that I highly recommend to all, gluten free or not.

Check out Joan’s Gluten Free Great Bakes on Facebook at JoansGF


Brazi Bites

Lately I have become completely obsessed with Brazi Bites.  These Brazilian Cheese Bread bites are absolutely incredible, and make the perfect snack or side.  They are little bites of cheesy goodness, and have become a staple in my diet.

So far, I have only tried the Cheddar and Parmesan variety, but they are also available in Garlic Asiago, Zesty Pepper Jack, and 3 Cheese Pizza.  I originally discovered these at Whole Foods, but have been seeing them at many of my local grocery stores.

Brazi Bites come frozen, and are quickly ready to eat after 20 minutes in a 400 degree oven.  They are light, fluffy, cheese bread bites of deliciousness, and enjoyed by all (those who are gluten free and those who are not) every time I serve them.

For more information, check out their website:

Marzetti Simply Dressed

Salad dressing is one of those items that suddenly becomes very difficult when you’re gluten free.  When I started thoroughly reading labels, I was surprised by many of the ingredients found in some popular brands.  There are also a lot of tricky things to look out for like the type of vinegar used to make the dressing.  As someone who enjoys bringing a salad for lunch most days, I was on the hunt for a few really good dressings that would perfectly compliment the ingredients in my salad, while providing a safe and pain free eating experience.

I first found Marzetti’s when it was purchased for me by someone who knew I was looking for gluten free salad dressing.  I initially tried the Avocado Ranch and Balsamic Vinaigrette, and loved both!  The flavor and texture are great, and they have been a delicious addition to my sometimes boring lunch.  I just purchased the Ranch, and plan to continue trying the different varieties, which are readily available at my local grocery store.  While Marzetti’s does have some dressings that are not gluten free, the ones that are safe for those avoiding gluten are clearly labeled on the side of the bottle, making this salad dressing brand an easy and delicious choice!

For more information, check out Marzetti’s website: