Vegan Blueberry Lemon Poppy Seed Bread

It’s 3:15 am… a time of… well not really day OR night… it’s a time no person should ever experience let alone when they’re SO worn out and sleepy all they want to do is go back to sleep. I’ve you’ve been following A Byte of Life, you’ll have read the post on Spain (also found here) which was a MOST incredible trip! We were seriously debating how long we could just fall off the grid and NOT come home! But alas, common sense or something to that nature won and we got on the multiple planes home. Oh hey jet lag, how are you? Are YOU the reason I’m up at 3:15am!?

Turning to my tried and true comfort, I started googling for recipes. If I can’t sleep I may as well bake right!? My love for lemon poppy-seed is almost as strong as my love for a good bottle of red wine, and thankfully, the mister LOVES a good lemon poppy-seed ANYTHING! The request was made and I had a mission ahead of me: your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to create a delicious lemon poppy-seed baked good that’s not super sweet and melts in your mouth Well, now that’s a fun challenge!

Lemon Blueberry Poppyseed Bread
Lemon Blueberry Poppyseed Bread

Vegan Blueberry Lemon Poppy Seed Bread
1/4C canola oil
1/4 C  honey
1/4C applesauce
1/4 C soy milk
zest & juice of 1 lemon
2 C Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbs poppy seeds
1 C fresh blueberries (put in freezer for about 30 minutes before using)
Pre-heat oven to 375
Combine the oil, applesauce, soy milk, honey , lemon juice and zest in a bowl
Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt. Add the poppy seeds and mix to combine.
Add to the wet ingredients and incorporate
Fold in frozen blueberries. Note that the batter will be thick
Place into a greased loaf pan, sprinkle raw sugar on top
Bake at 375 for 35 minutes(turning once half way through cooking)

Tasting notes:
It’s not your typical fluffy, white flour, white sugar lemon loaf you’d get at Starbucks. This is a more rustic bread and it was quite good! The gluten-free flour lends to a bit more of a mealy texture. Next time I’d add a bit more lemon juice. It’s not a sweet bread at all, so you’d need a lemoncello glaze, or blueberry jam/lemon curd/clotted cream to make it more pastry-ish.

All in all, it’s a good solid rustic breakfast bread…and…I better go taste another slice before posting this review 🙂

Golden Vanilla Cupcakes (Gluten-Free, Vegan)

Gluten & Dairy Free Vanilla Cupcakes
Gluten & Dairy Free Vanilla Cupcakes

Birthdays are wonderful and they are especially for someone who LOVES to bake! Bakers invent holidays just for the opportunity to whip up some delicious treat! Growing up I was given the nickname “Martha Stewart” because I was the chick who showed up for every holiday with the corresponding cookie/treat. Gingerbread for Christmas, heart-shaped shortbread with pink and red frosting at for Valentines Day, Shamrock cookies and green frosting for St. Patty’s, Easter treats, May Day cookies, July 4th something-or-rather,  Halloween trick or treat bags… Thanksgiving…Birthday’s Cupcakes…Picnic Pies and never white frosting after Labor Day!

Well, that was “back in the day” (am I even old enough to say that!?) before food allergies became so prevalent. Now, a baker must be VERY aware of those that might not be able to join in the sugary delicious consumption of a well-baked treat. Well, those bakers that want friends do!

It was a co-workers birthday a few weeks back and I immediately went into “Martha Mode”… “IF cupcakes just happened to show up on your desk what flavor would they be?” I inquired. “Not made by me” was the response…every bakers dream or dread! That is either the field of dreams to explore or a stress sentence of deciding what kind of baked good says what about you. Quickly I got over my female phobias (it’s true… women DO think of things like this!) and decided that I’d just make cupcakes that I’d be happy to take home if no one ate them.

 Gluten & Dairy Free Vanilla Cupcakes Texture
Gluten & Dairy Free Vanilla Cupcakes Texture

Being mindful of both a gluten AND a dairy intolerance I quickly realized that I didn’t have a go-to cupcake recipe to suffice. So I did what any good, sound, logical baking blogger did and headed to Google! This recipe is from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World  and they were a HIT!!!! Not just… hey this doesn’t taste like a rotten breaded sardine but actually got compliments of “These are AMAZING!” Even the birthday boy was skeptical when I told him they were gluten-free (omitted the dairy free part…have to ease them into the idea you know) said they were, and I do directly quote, “DELICIOUS! I was worried when you said gluten-free but those are REALLY GOOOOOOOD!

I LIVE BY Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Flour for my gluten-free recipes so with that, ladies and gentlemen, I give you the ultimate go-to birthday baked good! It’s chewy and moist with the correct density and texture of a “real” cupcake while incorporating various intolerance’s. It’s pretty much amazing! I also love the other book from these authors and have it on the cookbook shelf, Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar.

Culinate, who also posted this recipe suggested  Vegan Fluffy Buttercream Frosting or Not-Too-Sweet Blueberry Mousse for a topping but since I was short on time I just picked up a ready-made can from the grocery store and let people frost themselves. Okay…short on time AND lazy.

Golden Vanilla Cupcakes

Yield: 12 cupcakes
1 c. Soy Milk
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
1 1/4 c. Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Flour
2 tbsp. cornstarch
3/4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c. canola oil
3/4 c. sugar
2 1/4 tsp vanilla extract


  1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin pan with cupcake liners.
  2. Whisk the soy milk and vinegar in a measuring cup and set aside for a 4-5 minutes to get good and curdled.
  3. Beat together the soy milk mixture, oil, sugar, vanilla, and vanilla in a large bowl.
  4. Sift in the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, and mix until no large lumps remain.
  5. Fill cupcake liners two-thirds of the way and bake for 20 to 22 minutes.
  6. Transfer to a cooling rack, and let cool completely before frosting.


Cooking Cupcakes

Gluten Free Gingerbread Cookies

Disclaimer: This is a recipe for GLUTEN-FREE gingerbread. If you’re looking for regular gluten-FILLED gingerbread, you can find the recipe HERE.

Starting before Thanksgiving, there is a certain craving that I start to notice. It’s not just for the warmth of a cup of tea, or the delicious flavors of roasted turkey and holiday meals. No, it’s much MUCH more than that… I get the urge to bake EVERYTHING in my recipe books!  Channeling the reverse of Santa who consumes the baked goods, I try to make enough cookies, cakes and treats to feed everyone who might get within 10 feet of my door! Unless you adore baked goods being forced upon you at every turn, it’s best to avoid me for the holiday season!

While I do a lot of baking for others, which includes cooking with those luxuries I can’t enjoy like whole milk and butter, there are a few treats that I make in abundance purely to keep around the house. Gingerbread  cookies are my ALL TIME favorite! How can one go wrong with the delicious rich spices, the crunch of the crispy edges and the soft wonderful center… the complimentary royal icing that adorns the top of that lovely treat and even more, the sprinkles or toppings that are hand-picked to decorate the surface of such a treat. Okay okay, I’m getting a little too into the description of the cookie but does that explain how much I adore them!

I love gingerbread and use ANY excuse to throw a party (yes, it’s actually true!) so it goes without saying that I host a gingerbread decorating party each year. This year, there were actually quite a few gluten-free guests in attendance and I decided that it would be a good exercise to be a bit more mindful with minimizing gluten in my own diet. So, off on the adventure I was to make a gluten-free gingerbread cookie! COOKIES FOR ALL!!! For the cookie part, I complied the recipe from a few different ones that I found and  kinda pulled a “wing-it” with this one. They turned out GREAT! I love Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free flour, even the non-glutards (don’t get offended… I’m a lactard) couldn’t tell the difference and enjoyed them!!

Gluten-Free Gingerbread Cookies


5 Cups Bob’s Redmill Gluten-Free flour
2 T. baking powder
2 t. baking soda
2 t. cinnamon
1 t. ground ginger
1 t. salt
1/2 t. ground nutmeg
1/2 t. ground cloves
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup applesauce
1/3 cup oil
1/3 cup molasses T. vanilla

In a small bowl, stir together gluten-free flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, salt, nutmeg, and cloves, and set aside.
In a medium bowl, place the remaining ingredients, and stir to combine.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir well to combine.
Cover the bowl, place it in the refrigerator, and chill the dough for 1 hour or more.
Using a little safflower oil, lightly oil (or mist with oil) two non-stick cookie sheets and set aside.
Sprinkle a little gluten-free flour over a work surface.
Divide the chilled dough into quarters, work with only one-quarter of the dough at a time, and keep the remaining dough covered and chilled until needed.
Working in batches, roll out the quarter of dough to 1/4-inch thickness, and cut into desired shapes with cookie cutters.
Carefully transfer the cut cookies to the prepared cookie sheet.
Bake them at 350 degrees for 6 minutes (the cookies will feel slightly soft to the touch).
Allow them to cool on the cookie sheets for 3 minutes before transferring them to a rack to cool completely.
Repeat the rolling and cutting-out procedure for the remaining cookie dough.
Store the cookies in an airtight container.

Good House Keeping Royal Frosting
2 cup(s) confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoon(s) meringue powder
3 tablespoon(s) water, plus additional as needed
Assorted food colorings (optional)
In bowl, with mixer at low-speed, beat confectioners’ sugar, meringue powder, and water until blended. Scrape side of bowl with rubber spatula. Increase speed to medium; beat until soft peaks form, about 10 minutes. Icing should be stiff enough to hold its shape when piped. Thin with more water, if needed.
Tint icing with food colorings as desired; keep surface covered with plastic wrap to prevent drying out.