From colorful birthday cakes to raucous pizza parties, if you have a kid with a gluten allergy, sometimes it seems like childhood fun is fueled by wheat! Well, no need for little ones miss out—thankfully, there is a sweet supply of bakeries in the Bay Area that specialize in gluten-free goodies, from cakes, to cookies to pizza crusts and pastas. Let them eat cake!
Cups and Cakes Bakery
“If cupcakes are wrong, we don’t wanna be right.” Cups and Cakes Bakery is located in SOMA. You can tailor your cupcakes to be sugar, dairy, nut, egg, and gluten free (Not celiac friendly but gluten-free). They also cater weddings, take custom flavor orders, and offer hand-decorated or custom-printed cupcakes—and their way with the most popular kiddie characters is beyond impressive. The most popular flavors are Rich Red Velvet, Deep Dark Chocolate, Pretty Pretty Princess (strawberry), and Killer Carrot. Hungry yet?
451 9th St.
San Francisco, CA 94103
Kara Lind lovingly bakes small batches of cupcakes by hand each day using the finest ingredients sourced from local, sustainable and organic producers. Her perfectly moist gluten-free flavors with just the right amount of sweetness are Chocolate Coconut, Vanilla Coconut, Sweet Vanilla, and Chocolate Velvet. Utterly addictive. These locations even host yummy and fun onsite cupcake decorating birthday parties for creative kiddos. Locations in Burlingame, Napa, Palo Alto, San Jose, and Walnut Creek.
3249 Scott St.
San Francisco, Ca
900 North Point
San Francisco, Ca
Though it doesn’t have a storefront, Motek has a lot going for them: delicious gluten-free baked goods delivered to your door. Uri and Jen started Motek in 2013 and it’s no secret they’ve got the goods. Buying is a little unconventional: contact the bakery here with what you want to order, your address, and credit card information and you’ll get a swift response from the owners. If you’re up for ordering online, you can have gluten free treats at your door in no time.
Photo: Mariposa Baking
By far the best known gluten-free bakery in East Bay, Mariposa is a go-to spot for people with celiac’s or gluten sensitivities (Plus they have an location in the SF Ferry Building as well). They have everything from pizza crust to cakes to lemon squares to croissants, and their large frozen grab-n-go is a great alternative to the same-old frozen Whole Foods GF section.
Insider’s Tip: It’s a little hidden but the bakery is on the North side of the Art Deco building. Look for the red butterfly. There’s ample parking, too!
Mariposa Baking Oakland
5427 Telegraph Ave.
Emeryville is home to a new bakery, and it can and should be ranked among the best. Exquisite baked goods—both sweet and savory—served up every day but Sunday (when they are closed). Gluten-free food is baked in a dedicated gluten-free kitchen, guaranteeing no cross-contamination. They also offer many tempting options that are dairy free, grain free/flourless, sugar free, vegan, and or Paleo-friendly. You can also look for their tasty treats at local farmer’s markets.
Insider Tip: Try the Rosemary coconut cake, which they also use as the base to make the frosted cupcakes. The apple and berry turnovers, savory empanadas, and zucchini bread are also delicious.
1298 65th St.
Photo credit: James and the Giant Cupcake
James and the Giant Cupcake
Eurydice Manning opened this sweet little bake shop on San Pablo Avenue because of her love for her hometown, Oakland, and her love of watching others enjoy the magic of cupcakes. Based upon her grandmother’s advice, every bite is moist and delicious. East Bay Express even dubbed their cupcakes the best in the Bay area.
6326 San Pablo Ave.
Fresh, sweet, and made with love, owner Katie Alin is revolutionizing gluten-free goodies one fluffy, cake-y donut at a time. How about gluten-free apple fritters like Grandma made? She’s got ‘em. Fresh baked gluten-free breads and pies are super delicious here, and inventive cupcake and cake flavors include favorites like Chocoholic Chocolate, Very Very Vanilla, and Luscious Lemon. They now serve breakfast goodies like French Toast alongside their egg, soy, and dairy free donuts.
Insider Tip: The easiest way to know what’s happening at Miglet’s is to follow them on Facebook, where they update cupcake flavors and anything else that’s new & exciting in the kitchen daily.
480 San Ramon Valley Blvd.
Photo: Flour Craft Bakery
Flour Craft Bakery
This popular bakery opened in 2013, after years of loyal customers scooping up their gluten free granola and baked goods at local North Bay farmers markets. Hailed as Marin County’s first and largest gluten free bakery, this charming spot invites you to stay awhile with their cozy cafe space and full selection of artisan pastries, fresh breads, custom cakes, desserts and granolas—all baked fresh daily in a certified gluten free environment.
702 San Anselmo Ave.
San Anselmo, Ca
This committed bakery has everything from tortes to breads to cookies to cakes, and the owners promise that, if they didn’t mention it, their customers wouldn’t know their items were gluten free at all. The sweet-smelling Novato Bakery is where you can pick up savory sandwiches, coffee drinks and of course, cookies, cakes and more (The bakery is closed Sundays and Mondays). But their baked goods are also available at more than a dozen local farmers markets and cafes, so you can get your Flour Chylde fix near you. If you want to place a special order, they reccommend calling 3 days in advance.
850 Grant Ave.
This gluten-free bakery in the Peninsula run by husband and wife team Patrick and Charissa features daily specials based on the freshest local ingredients, but regular standby favorites are the smooth cheesecakes, earth foccacia rolls, delightful birthday cakes aplenty, sweet maple donuts with an almost angel-food cake consistency, and hearty lemon poppyseed loaves round out the sophisticated treats here. Zest will satisfy and surpass your family’s search for quality, organic gluten-free goodies for birthday parties and beyond.
1224 Arroyo Avenue
San Carlos, CA
Photo: Gluten Free Gourmet
Gluten Free Gourmet
You can get your full gluten free grub on here, plus stock your fridge for dinner for the week. The cafe tempts with baked goods, sandwiches, salads, soups and even gluten-free beer options, while the take-out cooler is filled with flavored pastas and ravioli, pizza and pizza crust, dairy free ice cream, onion rings, corn dogs, chicken and fish nuggets. Need a birthday cake or cupcakes? Of course this place has you covered.
14510 Big Basin Way, #8
Although they’re not specifically gluten-free bakeries, these bakeries and restaurants also offer delicious gluten free options: Cheeseboard Collective, Rockridge Market Hall, Arizmendi and Alexis Baking Company in Napa. Do you have any other favorites? We’d love to hear in the comments!
–Mireille Schwartz and Koseli Cummings