Coffee Cake at Tu-Lu's
In a bakery full of cupcakes and cookies, it's surprising that the coffee cake would be the best-selling item. But after trying Tu-Lu's coffee cake, it makes total sense. The crisp cinnamon-sugar topping adds a sweet crunch and the cake's center is perfectly crumbly. It's excellent alongside a cup of coffee, or even warmed and served a la mode with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Cookies at Ovenly
The gluten-free cookies at Ovenly are all so good that I just couldn't pick a favorite. This might be because the ladies at Ovenly don't go out of their way to make their recipes gluten-free. The cookies simply follow the bakery’s formula of using ingredients that are natural and sustainable, without any artificial flavorings or preservatives.
The peanut butter, pistachio agave, and hazelnut maple cookies are made with just a handful of ingredients including nut butter or nut flour, which Ovenly grinds in-house. The lusciously moist chocolate truffle cookie is made with rich Callebaut dark chocolate and brown rice flour, which does not contain gluten.
Toffee Bar at Pip's Place
Pip's Place is owned by Denise Cumming, who began baking gluten-free when her daughter, Olivia (nicknamed “Pip”), was diagnosed with celiac disease. Cumming uses three unique flour mixtures for her baked goods, each containing as many as five different gluten-free flours.
The UES bakery has endless options for the gluten-intolerant, but their selection of bars stood out among the offerings. The Heath Bar and Magic Cookie Squares were both exceptional, but my favorite was the Toffee Square. The multi-textured treat is made with a shortbread crust and a gooey, salty toffee middle. The topping of chocolate rice krispies may seem excessive, but they add just the right amount of crunch and cocoa to the dessert.
Tiramisu at Risotteria
At first glance, Risotteria looks like just another Italian restaurant in the West Village. But peruse the menu, and you’ll find that the Bleecker Street spot serves a number of gluten-free options including pizzas, paninis, pastas, and of course, sweets.
Risotteria sells pre-packaged cookies, brownies, and even gluten-free twinkies, but your best bet is to sit down for a piece of their Chocolate Tiramisu. The layers of lush chocolate cake and airy whipped cream keep the dessert light and flavorful.
Cake Pops from The Little Cakes
The Little Cakes specializes in creating gluten-free cake pops in a multitude of flavors from red velvet and vanilla to more exotic flavors like Chai and coconut. The bite-sized pops are cake-batter moist and each cake ball is covered in an outer shell of frosting and crunchy sprinkles. I don’t know how they do it, but these cake pops are addictive, even if you’re not gluten intolerant.
The Little Cakes don't yet have a storefront, so in the meantime you'll have place an order through their website or stop by G-Free NYC on the UWS, an all gluten-free shop that sells a variety of hand-picked sweets and breads.
Peanut Butter Chocolate Cookie from This Chick Bakes
This Chick Bakes sells their gourmet cookies, made without artificial flavors or preservatives, to coffee shops and markets around the city, offering both gluten-free and vegan options in addition to their regular cookies.
The Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookie is a solid gluten-free treat. The cookie has a real peanutty taste and is chewy, not dry or bland. The chocolate kiss center adds a decadent touch and let's be honest, when are peanut butter and chocolate not a winning combination?