Lauren’s Favorites

Season’s Greetings on Christmas Eve!

New Fantastic Food:

I found a fabulous new line of nut cheezes that are made from cashews and coconut oil! I was so delighted to find vegan cheeses that have healthy, familiar ingredients! I have tried the shredded Mozzarella, Cheddar and Pepper Jack and they have worked very well in my recipes including: Quiche, French Onion Soup, Enchiladas, Lasagna, Pizza, Grilled Cheeze on SRSLY Sourdough and much more. They have hard and soft cheeses in a variety of  fabulous flavors.

Parmela Cashew Cheeze-Our nut milk cheeses are made using traditional cheese making techniques.  Rich nut milks made from blending cashews and almonds with filtered water form the base.  These are much thicker than the nut milks you would drink, and amazingly have more flavor potential than dairy milks.

It took over 2 years and 2,000 iterations to get the cultures to grow properly in the thick cashew milks and unlock true cheese flavors for the Creamy Treenut Cheese.  In crafting our new aged cheeses we up over 4000 iterations of cultures grown.

The nutmilk cheeses can be found in Whole Foods, New Leaf Markets and other natural food stores or ordered directly 


SRSL Bread-Gluten-free, Dairy-free San Francisco Sourdough Bread and Rolls! 


OMG, I thought I’d never be able to eat Sourdough again…until now! I did the happy dance when I found this amazing bread. I am a traditionalist so I like the classic best, but the seeded is very good and my husband loves the Kale(me too). The sandwich rolls are made out of just Sorghum flour so its great for people who have multiple grain sensitivities. She also makes a huge Pullman Loaf that you can special order!


Bread SRSLY is committed to making nourishing bread. Each loaf is leavened with wild yeast, cultivated from the air and grain. Unlike commercial yeast, wild yeast helps to break down the grains, making them easier to digest, and adding a pleasant tang that we call sourdough.


We created our bread only after months of research, applying traditional sourdough techniques to our gluten-free recipes. We learned that good bread takes its time to rise. Each Bread SRSLY loaf rises for more than 12 hours, making it SERIOUSLY good for you. In addition to being gluten-free, all Bread SRSLY products are free of dairy, egg, soy, nut, potato, tapioca, and garbanzo.

Available at Health Food Stores including New Leaf Market, Staff of Life, Bi-Rite Markets or Order at:


Want to bake your own Bread?

Manini’s Bread Mix & Fresh Pasta

These pastas and breads are so nutritious and have great texture! I’ve enjoyed Manini’s Spaghetti, Lemon-Thyme Linguine and Lasagna Noodles(not the ravioli b/c they contain diary) and bread mixes which are easy and nutritious. Even my Italian friends are now loving this pasta!

At the heart of our commitment to quality is our dedication to making all of our fresh pastas, breads & bakery products and flours from naturally Gluten Free Ancient Grains. Our Ancient Grains include Amaranth, Teff, Sorghum, and Millet, plants that are essentially unchanged from hundreds of years ago. The result is a nutritious, fiber-rich, great-textured food that is delicious and superior in taste, texture and nutrition to the vast majority of typical rice and corn based Gluten Free foods.

Want less carbs and more protein in your pasta go for: Tolerant Red Lentil or Black Bean Pasta which have great texture and tons of protein and nutrition! Available at Health food Stores and online.

Tolerant Pasta

Sonoma Pasta SauceSonoma Mushroom Pasta Sauce. I had to stop eating tomatoes due to arthritis and was so happy to find this tomato-free sauce! They have many flavors, but not all are dairy-free. I do still make my own with wild mushrooms and sherry, but nice to have a jar in the pantry in a pinch. Available at Health food Stores and online.



Cake Therapy  Paleo Cake Mix: offers gluten free and paleo baking mixes, made from quality natural ingredients, without preservatives or additives. Cake Therapy’s products are always free of gluten, dairy, soy and corn, with grain free options.

Paleo Chocolate Cake Mix Ingredients: Organic coconut flour, arrowroot, almond meal, organic coconut sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla powder, salt, baking soda, baking powder.

I’ve tried all three flavors: chocolate, vanilla and spice, and love them all! They make a moist and tasty cake or cupcakes. I used my Chocolate Ganache Frosting  with Lily’s Stevia Sweetened Chocolate Chips and Cashew Cream Frosting with them. They have recipes and adaptations on their website too! I used the Spice Cake Mix to make a Carrot Cake and it was so delicious.

Teas to go with your dessert or just enjoy anytime:

Art of Tea: Chocolate Mint Tea which is so rich and tasty it does not need anything else. Great way to avoid sweets, drink this tea instead! 

Numi Turmeric Teas are anti-inflammatory and very tasty especially when I add some local raw honey, ginger and homemade cashew milk! Available at health food stores or

Steven Smith Lord Bergamot Earl Grey Tea

A few other goodies I’ve fallen in love with this year:

Lily’s Fair Trade Stevia Sweetened Chocolate Chips

We love premium dark chocolate. We don’t like sugar. The addition of stevia to premium dark chocolate is a perfect fit. It makes our favorite food even better. Click to learn more about why we love stevia.




Vixen Kitchen Premium Vegan Gelato!  So creamy and delicious you will think you are in Italy!  The first time I tasted this luscious Gelato I was in San Francisco on a cold windy day, but had to have it as my teeth chattered! OMG, I was in Heaven and forgot about the cold the first lick! I love that they sweeten with real maple syrup and use cashews as the base! Again, nutritious and delicious and guilt-free! It is expensive b/c they use the highest quality ingredients and it is worth it! Available at health food stores, including Staff of Life. Flavors: Chocolate, Vanilla, Chai, Coffee, Mint,Blueberry.

Xyloburst Chewing Gum, stays soft, sweetened with xylitol which is great for teeth and tastes good! Available at health food stores, and

My new favorite website to buy all the aforementioned goodies and many more at a 25%-75% discount/usually 25% is at


Kitchen Tools:

  • Kitchen Aid 7 Quart Mixer is the largest capacity home mixer and I love my new one in Candy Apple Red! I also bought the:
  • Spiralizer Attachment that also slices and peels fruit and vegetables!

Body Care Products: Many skincare products contain gluten and dairy which go into your bloodstream within 30 seconds! Yes, it will cause you just as much trouble as eating it!

  • Nubian Heritage Soaps and Lotions
  • Evoli Body Butter & Lip Balm, made from all organic healthy oils
  • Zoya Nail Polish, free of formaldehyde and other bad chemicals available at Whole Foods
  • DoTerra essential oils: I do not travel without the OnGuard and put it on my feet every night!
  • For the Bathroom: Poo Pourri toilet spray. This is so Brilliant! You spray your favorite essential oil based Poo Pourri into the toilet before you go and it acts as a barrier to help keep your bathroom smelling good! It really works, honest! I keep one in my purse and in our bathroom.

Healthcare/Natural Medicine:

  • Alpha CF Homeopathic liquid is lactose free and is what I use at the first sign of a cold or flu and it usually gets rid of it right away or at least shortens the duration to a few days instead of a few weeks. Available at health food stores, you may have to special order the liquid form.
  • Occiliccocinum homeopathic cold and flu, Walgreens, CVS and healthfood store. Pellets contain lactose so either dilute a dose in water and only take a teaspoon or find the Alpha CF liquid.
  • Deep Lung is great for respiratory infections.
  • Chestal Homeopathic Cough Medicine with honey, health food stores and CVS and Walgreens.
  • Yin Chao Chinese Medicine for colds that start with a sore throat is great.
  • High Dose Vitamin C Meyers Cocktail Infusion through an IV drip or push by a naturopathic doctor. or in CA. This saves me every Christmas/Winter, including this week!


  • Can’t go to Italy this year read, Dolce di Love By Lynch
  • for Humor and belly laughs read Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris
  • go to for many inspirational and spiritual books, audio books and DVD’s for adults and children
  • Listen to shows on:


  • Kids and Adults: Simon, an electronic game that lights up and tests your memory. Can be played with 2-4 people
  • Adults: Rummikub, a game with tiles and numbers. Good mental challenge and fun.



  • Nomads Organic Clothing, this Canadian company uses all organic fabrics made from hemp, soy, bamboo and cotton. It feels so good on and will not disrupt your hormones or endocrine system and it’s great for the environment. A win-win-win! Just wish they did not make them in China. Sometimes you have to compromise. These clothes feel really soft and warm; and look stylish.                                   Available at
  • Synergy Organic Clothing, mostly cotton, made in Nepal. Stores in Santa Cruz and San Francisco and available online
  • Smart Wool Socks, wool that doesn’t itch and keeps your toes and feet warm in the coldest weather! They also make runners socks-breathable and cushiony! Available at The Sock Shop and online

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a Healthy, Happy New Year filled with wonderful food, friends, family and goodies that improve your health and life! Love and Blessings to all! Please Comment and share with us your favorite  Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Vegan, Organic food, things & products.

Be Well and Thrive into your Dreams! 


Updates for all previous posts

Happy New Year Everyone! I have lots of updated and new information I am excited to share with you. Hope you all had a great holiday season and a have begun a very healthy 2011.

May you have a Valentine’s filled with love and chocolate. No Wheat No Dairy No Problem has an abundance of chocolate recipes for you just in time for Valentine’s Day, but who needs to wait for that? I’ll be making Chocolate Truffles this week and hot chocolate for this rainy Sunday. Those of you who don’t cook or bake can even handle the Hot Chocolate recipe! For those who love to bake; the Molten Chocolate Cake and Chocolate Decadence Cake are a little peice of Heaven, especially with Raspberry Sauce.

Substitutions in No Wheat No Dairy No Problem Cookbook: Yes, you can use low glycemic index Coconut Palm Sugar in my cookbook in all the recipes that call for sucanat, date sugar, maple sugar-just use the same measurement 1 to 1. It is now available at the Beehive and Asian supermarkets and health food stores. Agave has not been proven unsafe, but be sure you use raw blue agave for the least amount of processing. And, make sure to read ingredients and that high fructose/corn syrup has not been added in. The Maple Agave at Trader Joe’s has corn syrup-so, do not use this-buy the blue agave there instead.

Stores: Staff of Life in Santa Cruz is moving across the street on Soquel and is much bigger! I love this store for all the unique and familiar healthy food and the best prices around. It is worth a trip even if you live “over the hill”!

Jones and Bones in Capitola has brought in a line of gluten-free flours-such as sweet potato and mesquite. They have a german line of the healthiest non-stick cookware pots/pans-it has ground diamonds. They are so amazing and don’t scratch. They’re worth the price-not inexpensive but an investment. Jennifer always has one of a kind gifts and gourmet goodies that are fantastic gifts. You can order at and she will pack and ship it for you. She still has rare olive oils and vinegars too.

Product News: Bob’s Red Mill now has a Gluten Free line-including GF Oats. Well, I have been waiting and now it is here-GF Bisquick! Some Costco locations are now carrying Bison(Buffalo) ground and steaks and roasts for the best price! I found a delicious GF/DF  Chocolate or Carrot Cake, with a fine crumb texture, at Sprouts in Arizona by O’Doughs a Canadian company- It will be carried at Sprouts and the Beehive in San Jose, CA.

Warning: Green and Black’s Chocolate has added Milk Powder to their dark chocolate bars! They have reformulated, too bad. ;(

Bread: You can finally have a baguette that will transport you to France, but it is made in Italy of course!;) It has a crispy crust and soft inside. Makes a great hot dog roll, baguette slices, bruscetta and sandwich roll. It is called Schar and they also have dinner rolls and sliced bread. Yes, it has brown rice flour and psyllium. I don’t suggest you eat it all the time, but it will definately satisfy your yearning without a need to cheat! You just heat it up in a toaster oven or regular oven at 400 degress for 5 minutes.  It is available at the Beehive in San Jose, one of the best gluten free independant health food stores.

Dariy Alternative: Mimicreme has release their Dairy-free/Vegan Whipping “Cream” made with nuts! Yeah, we can have fluffy whipped “cream” again. Try it on top of any of my desserts and my Hot Chocolate recipe-mmm. You can also make the Meringue in my cookbook for a great alternative.

Sad things: Clementine’s Kitchen store in Monterey closed. We wish David and Drew all the best and thank them for providing us with one of the most beautiful cooking stores ever. Lots of Love and best wishes.

New Gluten Testing Lab: Cyrex Labs finally opened! They specialize in the most comprehensive and up to date saliva and blood testing for gluten sensitivity/celiac’s disease  etc…No more endoscopies-that is no longer the gold standard-thank you Cyrex! See the page on this site for Naturopathic Doctors(Dr. Bradley West) who use Cyrex.

Personal News/Blessings & Coming Soon: I will be posting a few of my television apperances on ABC Live in Sacramento and Chicago for you to watch.

Coming Soon: This year I will be filming DVD’s of cooking classes for you to enjoy at your convenience and you can watch them more than once, pause, rewind and fast forward all you like! They will be sold on this site and at my classes/events.

New Page Coming Soon: Dr. Bradley West, a Naturopathic Doctor will be writing a page on this blog for all of you on various subjects-stay tuned for that within the next month.

On a personal note: I’m engaged to be married to a man worth waiting  43 years to share this life together! 🙂

Be Well and share this site with all you know that can benefit from it. “May you live the life you’ve always imagined” by Henry David Thoreau

Delicious Bread Alternatives without Wheat or Gluten or dairy

I am constantly on the search for the perfect taste and texture in alternative breads. I have finally found the perfect French Baguette, and some of my favorite alternatives that I will share with you. All of the alternatives below are dairy-free too!

Gluten-free, Dairy-free Bread and Buns

Manini’s has my vote for best alternative bread/buns hand’s down! I also like Canyon Bakehouse and Mariposa.

Canyon Bakehouse in Loveland, Colorado makes the best alternative sliced bread I’ve had the pleasure of eating. Canyon Bakehouse is a gluten-free dedicated bakery! They make sliced bread(white, multi-grain, caraway(tastes like Rye), cinnamon raisin) that is the perfect texture and closest to wheat or white bread so far. Their hamburger buns are so delicious, perfect in texture and just the right amount of sesame seeds. You will think you are eating wheat or white buns…really.

Some other alternative breads are either too wet and dense or too dry and need to be toasted. Canyon Bakehouse bread is perfect the way it is and doesn’t need to be toasted. It does contain a bit of corn and yeast.

Udi’s bread is also good and comes in Multi-grain and white sliced, hot dog buns and hamburger buns. It has a nice texture and not much flavor, yet better than most. It is drier than others, so it is great for making toast, breadcrumbs, croutons and stuffing! It is now at most Trader Joe’s! They are now making frozen baguettes that need to be baked for 5-10 minutes. I use them in a pinch, but have had a lot of problems with them having a giant hole in the center! They do make a good crouton, but the ingredients are high glycemic.

NEW IN 2015: SAN FRANCISCO SOURDOUGH by SRSLY is amazingly similar to regular glutenous sourdough. It is par baked so you need to toast it. After toasting the texture is crisp on the outside and soft on the inside like just baked bread in a restaurant or bakery! YUM! They also make excellent sandwich rolls now that are made from sorghum and are rice free and vegan/egg-free! The bread is vegan and egg-free, Non-GMO, and contains rice, millet and sorghum. SRSLY has no added Yeast! 

Gluten-free & Dairy-free Baguette

HURRAY, I’ve found the closest thing to the French Baguette! Naturally, it’s made in Italy(Fatto in Italia)! The company Schar makes various types of gluten-free bread in different European countries and in 2013 opened a factory in New Jersey. Their Baguette is made in Italy and has to be baked for 5 minutes which results in a fresh out of the oven crispy crust and soft/fluffy inside! You will not believe it’s Gluten-free. It does have yeast and cornstarch and soy protein. So it is a treat and great for a submarine sandwich, garlic bread, crostini, bread crumbs, french bread pizza, or top for French Onion soup and more. All the foods we thought we would never enjoy again after going Gluten-free! Bon Appetite!

Mariposa Bakery in San Francisco makes the best GF Bagel which has a similar texture to a NY Bagel! It’s a little chewy!

Wheat -free and Gluten-free Alternatives

Food for Life-Rice Bread and Millet Bread. They are both very dense, but lighten up when toasted. I only eat them toasted. Millet is a very healthy grain. Remember, variety is important-so, you don’t develop an allergy/sensitivity due to overexposure.

Squirlly Sorghum Bread is egg-free and has very limited ingredients. It is a dense sliced bread and I feel needs to be toasted to lighten up the texture. This bread is really great for people with multiple allegeries and sensitivities!

Wheat-free Alternatives

French Meadow Bakery Rye Bread or Sourdough Rye which are also Yeast-free. Very thinly sliced and light enough to eat untoasted. It will get too hard if you over toast it, so set the toaster for the light-medium setting.

Staff of Life in Santa Cruz makes a Pumpernickel Rye that is very dense and sweet from the molasses. Great toasted or just plain-especially with Earth Balance (soy-free version).

Spelt Bread/Products

Spelt is a non-hybridized wheat. It is one of the five ancient grains. Many people that have a wheat sensitivity can tolerate Spelt, but it is not gluten-free.

Rudi’s Spelt Bread, Spelt Hamburger Buns, Spelt Hot Dog Buns and Spelt English Muffins-you won’t be able to tell that these are alternative since they have a soft, spongy texture like the traditional versions.

SPROUTED BREAD IS A NO NO, IT IS STILL GLUTEN AND WHEAT! Breads made from Kamut, Spelt, Rye or Barley are both wheat and gluten.

Pizza Crust

Still Riding Pizza is  the best Gluten-free and wheat-free and dairy-free pizza crust. they will ship it to your home and you put your own toppings on it and bake it yourself. It comes all rolled out in a pizza box! Read the article on this site about Amici’s Pizza(a California chain), which also uses Still Riding pizza crust. This crust is thin, airy and puffy with a lite crispiness when baked long enough. If you under bake it, it will be too soft. I like to use a perforated pizza pan for this crust or a pizza stone.

Bob’s Red MIll Pizza Mix is very good. I actually made a Foccacia with it!

Udi’s Pizza Crust-they come frozen, you add your own toppings and bake. Two personal sized crusts come in a package, which fit into the toaster oven! These are made with rice flour with xanthan gum, but I do indulge once in a while when I have nothing else in the house!

Yes, there are other bread alternatives out there. However, most of them have lots of starch and rice flour-which will pack on the pounds and don’t have much nutritional value. Many of the gluten-free alternatives contain xanthan gum or guar gum which are bacteria, and too much is not a good thing. So, we can find alternatives, but are they healthy?

Bread in general is not so easy on the digestive tract; so I save it for times when I must succumb to my cravings for it. When I eat bread I notice that I get bloated and constipated, even when it is gluten-free. Next time you eat bread or cut it out of your diet for a while…notice how you feel. Is it worth it? I really love the Irish Soda Bread and Cornbread in my cookbook, and hope you will too. Many people with a gluten sensitivity, which is most people, can have a gluteo-morphic effect which is an opioid(heroine, morphine and codeine are all opioids) affect! Bread is like a drug for some people! If you crave it so badly you feel you must have it and then feel a lot of pleasure after eating it, you may be experiencing a glutei-morphic affect! These are the people who really need to avoid bread. boo hop, I’m sorry, but it’s worth your health and well-being. See a Naturopathic doctor to treat your gut to help heal this.

I have two recipes in my cookbook, No Wheat No Dairy No Problem for great alternatives, Irish Soda Bread(pg.16) The Spelt Bread(pg.18) is a wheat/gluten which was included before I knew I needed to avoid it! Great for people who just refuse to give up wheat b/c it is a non-hybridized wheat and an ancient grain.

The Irish Soda Bread does not have to proof, so it is very fast and delicious, and has a scone like texture. I love the Irish Soda bread made with dried fruit for breakfast with a side of my Lemon Curd(pg.225). There is a cornbread recipe too( pg.14) use blue corn b/c it is NON- GMO.

I hope you enjoy these alternatives as much as I do. Let us all know how you like them. If you know of an alternative bread that does not contain rice flour, xanthan gum and lots of starch, please comment on this post and share it with all of us. Go bake some delicious bread and or go on your own search for a healthy alternative at your local health food store.  All of the brands above are found in health food stores-please support your local independent stores/owners so we can keep getting good, healthy food and supplements while supporting local families.


Be Well, Chef Lauren