Vegan, Gluten-free, and (mostly) Sugar-free Recipes From New York's Most Talked-about Bakery

Book - 2009
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Random House, Inc.
Forget everything
you’ve heard about
health-conscious baking.

Simply, BabyCakes is your key to an enlightened, indulgent, sweets-filled future. This is important news not only for parents whose children have allergies, for vegans, and for others who struggle with food sensitivities, but also for all you sugar-loving traditionalists. The recipes in these pages prove that there is a healthy alternative to recklessly made desserts, one that doesn't sacrifice taste or texture.

Having experimented endlessly with alternative, health-conscious sweeteners, flours, and thickeners, Erin McKenna, the proprietress of beloved bakery BabyCakes NYC, developed these recipes–most are gluten-free, all are without refined sugar–in hopes of combating her own wheat, dairy, and sugar sensitivities. In BabyCakes, she shares detailed information about the ingredients she uses (coconut flour, xanthan gum, and agave nectar, for example) and how to substitute them properly for common ones–all the while guiding you safely through techniques she’s spent years perfecting.

When BabyCakes NYC opened on Manhattan’s Lower East Side in 2005, it helped propel the gluten-free and vegan baking movement into a new stratosphere. Suddenly there was a destination for those with wheat allergies and other dietary restrictions–and, soon enough, celebrities and dessert lovers of every kind–to indulge freely in delectable muffins and teacakes, brownies and cookies, pies and cobblers.

Enclosed within these pages are all the “secrets” you’ll need to bring the greatness of BabyCakes NYC into your own home as well as raves and recommendations from devotees such as Natalie Portman, Jason Schwartzman, Mary-Louise Parker, Zooey Deschanel, and Pamela Anderson.

For confectionists of all kinds, delicious alternatives lie within: Red Velvet Cupcakes, Chocolate Shortbread Scones with Caramelized Bananas, Strawberry Shortcake, and BabyCakes NYC’s celebrated frosting (so delicious it has fans tipping back frosting shots!), to name just a few. Finally, Erin’s blissful desserts are yours for the baking!

Baker & Taylor
Collects stories and recipes from Babycakes, the vegan and gluten-free bakery in New York, including chocolate shortbread scones with carmelized bananas, sugarplum cookies, and triple chocolate fat pants cake.

& Taylor

The proprietress of beloved bakery BabyCakes NYC provides recipes for a variety of healthy, but tasty, treats, including Red Velvet Cupcakes, Chocolate Shortbread Scones With Caramelized Bananas, Strawberry Shortcake and more, in a book sprinkled with ringing celebrity endorsements.

Publisher: New York : Clarkson Potter, c2009
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780307408839
Branch Call Number: 641.5638 M199b
Characteristics: 144 p. : col. ill. ; 24 cm
Alternative Title: Baby Cakes


From the critics

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Sep 20, 2015

Not impress. The vanilla cupcakes are ok...the icing ok, the chocolate cupcakes were awful! The icing too! Not worth buying all the expensive ingredients. There are other books way better then this one.

Jul 02, 2015

excellent book for everyone!

oO_Oo Sep 05, 2013

Be forewarned that not every recipe in this book is gluten-free. Be additionally forewarned that many of the recipes are dreadful. Simply dreadful. I am an experienced cook and baker and have made gluten-free vegan baked goods in the past. But the results from this cookbook ranged from unspectacular to downright nearly inedible. Turns out I wasn't the only one with this experience. Much of the criticism about McKenna's recipes centers around the fact that these recipes are nothing like the goods in the bakery. By the way, the cupcakes I made cost more than $50. I used a recipe off the internet that turned out better and cost less and used readily available items. The internet is your friend. Babycakes is not.

Jan 14, 2013

Last night for the first time I made the chocolate chip cookies, recipe on page 68, after owning this book for a couple of years. After 2 years of gluten-free, dairy-free baking, including from other reputable recipe books, I can tell you that Erin's recipes are painstakingly formulated, and dee-licious! For example, the c.c. cookies call for 6 tablespoons of unsweetened applesauce (this is part of the vegan egg substitute). I did substitute carob chips for the chocolate (yet another food issue I have), and the cookies ARE AWESOME!! These are the mostly crunchy version of c.c. cookies. I haven't had c.c. cookies in I-don't-know-how-many-years--15, maybe?
An aside to glutenfreevegangirl below: you didn't read the title of the book very closely: she says, "(mostly) gluten-free" right on the cover of the book.
To the other objections to the ingredients: yes, some of them are expensive and not available at your neighborhood grocery store. Welcome to the world of gluten-free, dairy-free baking. Most (or all?) of them are available at health food stores, and certainly online. HOWEVER: the few recipes I've made from the Babycakes book are sooo delicious!

green_thumb Jul 18, 2011

Expensive ingredients and some recipes contain gluten so be careful. Some of the recipes sound amazing though! I haven't tried any yet but just look at the cupcakes on the cover!

Jun 06, 2011

I really liked this book. It is true that ingredients are a little unusual but once you get them, you can make a lot of recipes in the book. (I found most of the ingredients at bulkbarn).

There is also a section at the front that explains what the ingredients are and their purpose which i appreciated.

Though, unlike what glutenfreevegangirl said, the recipes i made didnt require spelt flour. I sometimes substituted the agave nectar for maple syrup and it tasted delicious :):) I mostly made the chocolate cupcakes and brownie recipes and they turned out well.

I would recommend this book!

glutenfreevegangirl Jan 15, 2011

The *worst* gluten-free cookbook! Despite the title, the main ingredient in the book is spelt flour, which the author admits contains gluten. There are no substitutes offered - so you're as well to try modifying any other regular recipe out there. Also, the 'Double Chocolate Crumb Cake' looks good, but when you read the recipe, it relies on 'Chocolate Crumb Base', another recipe. This in turn relies on the recipe for 'Chocolate Cupcakes' as *it's* base! Oh well, whay else would you expect from someone who, in the Acknowledgements, thanks 'Bill for the spirit-lifting diamonds when I was about to give up' and 'Krista Marino, for knowing when to slip on Paris Hilton's latest CD to ease me out of a brewing Saturday morning meltdown'? Pretty pictures. Terrible cookbook.

Jul 15, 2010

Gluten-free baking that actually has great results! Some of the ingredients, like agave nectar, are expensive; however, they taste great and are better for you.

Jul 14, 2010

The recipes in this book look very yummy. Problem was that there were many ingredients that I have either never heard of or simply didn't know where to buy them. If you are already vegan or on a gluten-free diet you probably would enjoy this book quite a lot!

Facchintr Jun 23, 2010

Once you fill your pantry with some of the basic ingredients in these recipes, you will find that you can easily bake the yummiest, healthiest treats. Trust me...noone will know that the sweet goodies that you're serving are made with an incredible variety of healthy alternative flours and ingredients.


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