I never thought I’d say this, but I actually found a gluten-free bakery that I really enjoy.
Not to hurt anyone’s feelings, but I generally stay away from baked goods made with gluten-free flour. They never taste quite right to me and I’ve tried quite a lot since I have several friends who eat gluten-free diets. I don’t mind making sweets that are naturally gluten-free, like flourless cakes or ones uses glutinous rice flour (aka mochi), but I have never really enjoyed cookies, cakes, etc that are made with gluten-free flour.
So I was really happy to discover 2Good2B. I found goods here perfect for my gluten-free friends and even for myself even though I don’t generally buy/eat gluten-free desserts.
2Good2B, which I’m guessing is a play on the phrase “too good to be true,” is a gluten-free bakery and cafe that offers a variety of muffins, cupcakes, and other baked goods as well as savory items like pizzas, pastas, etc. Everything is gluten-free and all the breads and bakery items are baked fresh in-house.
We were invited to come check it out, and since we already had lunch plans, we stopped in mainly for the sweets.
First, we tried a sample of their mini cupcakes: lemon, carrot, orange, coconut, red velvet, chocolate.
The first few cupcakes I sampled had a white cake base. I thought they had a pretty good flavor to it (i.e., chunks of coconut in the batter for the coconut one), though the texture of the cupcakes were a little dry. They were, in my opinion, pretty good for gluten-free, but I could tell they were gluten-free.
Then we tried the red velvet. And to my surprise, I really enjoyed it and I couldn’t taste that it was gluten-free. I’ve tried the gluten-free red velvet at Sprinkles and did not enjoy it at all, so I was happy with the rendition at 2Good2B. DH doesn’t even like red velvet cupcakes normally, but he really enjoyed this version.
However, the big winner for me was the chocolate. The chocolate went beyond “good for a gluten-free dessert,” and was instead one of the best chocolate cupcakes I’ve ever eaten– gluten-free or not. The manager had told me that they use chocolate ganache in the batter. As a result, the cake ends up being tender, fluffy and packs a powerful chocolate punch. I’ve baked a lot of chocolate cupcakes over the years, and one of the biggest frustrations is that most tender and fluffy chocolate cupcakes have a very light chocolate flavor. I’ve only come across two chocolate cupcake recipes that were light, fluffy, and had a strong chocolate flavor without the needed help of frosting or a filling. These chocolate cupcakes were even better than my go-to chocolate cupcake recipes. I was definitely in love and so was DH.
Next we moved onto the brownies.
The brownies were very rich and chocolatey. They tasted great, but I wasn’t as impressed since it’s not as hard to make a gluten-free brownie since brownies don’t use that much flour.
We also were provided a sample of their oversized muffins: apple streusel, chocolate chip, and cranberry orange.
The chocolate chip was my least favorite. It tasted slightly drier than the rest. The apple one was the most moist and tasted almost like eating an apple pie. This was my favorite one. The cranberry orange was quite tasty too and we were told that they don’t use any milk in it, only orange juice for the moisture.
We were also given a pack of chocolate chip cookies. These are the first gluten-free cookies I’ve ever enjoyed. They had a slight aftertaste of gluten-free flour, but they were still really good.
I was really excited to try this place out and have already been spreading the word to my gluten-free friends. 2Good2B also makes wedding cakes as well. I plan on stopping by here whenever I’m in the area, both for myself and for when I need to bring treats to a gluten-free food gathering.
We didn’t try any of the savory cafe items, so I can’t comment on those, but Mary checked out some of them and you can read her post here.
Please note, as indicated above, we were invited here to try out the baked goods and our food samples were complimentary. However, I was not paid for this review and my opinions are my own.
2Good2B Bakery Cafe
204 N El Camino Real
Encinitas, CA 92024