GOOD TO KNOW: http://cupcakesonline.com/
Specialties: cupcakes and specialty cakes
Gluten-free: gluten-smart available
Locations: see website for other locations
Other: gluten-smart carrot cake available on Saturday and Sunday
This post contains affiliate links. That means if you use them to make a purchase, I'll earn a bit of money from the sale to save for my next gluten-free adventure.
The allure of cupcakes - gluten-free and otherwise
What is it about a cupcake that makes it more enticing than a slice of cake? Is it the individual serving size and utensil-free portability or the diversity of flavors with a mountain of frosting on top? It could be because the frosted treats trigger fond memories of childhood parties and cherry Kool-Aid. Whatever the reason, I dissolve into a fit of happy clapping every time I come across a cupcake shop.
Gluten-smart treats are a real treat at Cupcakes by Lori and Heather
Quick question: What's better than spotting a sidewalk sign for cupcakes?
Answer: Discovering the sign points to a cupcake shop that sells gluten-smart cupcakes. Gluten-smart is a term I saw a couple times while in Canada. It's a labeling term used for foods that are made with gluten-free ingredients but the manufacturer cannot guarantee the product is allergen free due to cross contamination. If you are severely allergic or have celiac disease, I recommend avoiding these items.
Cupcakes by Heather and Lori, located on Denman Street, is an appropriately named franchise that sells a variety of cakes including wedding cakes, cake pops and, of course, cupcakes baked fresh daily. On the day of our visit they were offering chocolate or carrot cake in the gluten-smart variety. Shawn and I chose to share a carrot cake cupcake since it's Shawn's favorite and, let's be honest, no one person needs that much butter cream frosting all to themselves. The gluten-smart cupcakes at Cupcakes could easily pass as gluten-containing imposters. The texture was a perfect combination of moist and springy, not dense or grainy like so many gluten-free baked goods. I appreciate that the cake wasn't over sweetened and instead the super-sweet frosting provides the sugar rush. I really enjoyed the first bite and then on the second I bit into something chewy. Bleh…raisins! Don't get me wrong, I like raisins - in oatmeal and trail mix. Definitely not in cake. Shawn says that all carrot cake has raisins. I say, next time we're sharing chocolate.
When it comes to dessert time, I enjoy sheet cake, layer cake, shortcake and even upside down cake but I LOVE cupcakes, the deliciously portable treat and the cakery in Vancouver.
If you are spending time in Gastown, check out my post on Purebread, and a bakery of another sort.
A note to readers:
I am gluten sensitive/intolerant so I am not overly concerned with possible cross contamination. If you have severe reactions, I recommend taking additional precautions.