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The Results of My 10-Day Yoga Challenge

Fitness, Healthy Living, New York City, Travel

The Results of My 10-Day Yoga Challenge

6 Comments 11 August 2016

Clearly, I overestimated my newly found mindfulness, because on Saturday morning, hours after finishing Day 5 of my 10-Day Yoga Challenge, I looked down at my feet and didn’t recognize the flip flops I was wearing. They did look very similar to the ones I wore to yoga earlier that morning, same color, same style, and they fit rather comfortably. But there was a little pizazz to the stitching that I didn’t remember noticing before. At first I thought, “Wow, look at me honing my focus to such little details. Yoga is really increasing my awareness.” But upon further investigation, I realized that in my post-class reverie, I had slipped on someone else’s shoes. I feel terrible for the person who walked home or hopefully just hobbled to their car barefooted, which they must have done, because when I went back to the closed studio, there were my flip flops waiting for me outside the door.

If you missed my last post, I’m attempting 10 consecutive day of yoga at Power Yoga Buffalo while away from New York for the summer. Why? You’ll have to read that post which covers Days 1-5.

The first 5 days felt eternal. I was constantly sore, every class seemed never-ending, and I couldn’t help but come out of poses early in order to prevent total muscle failure that would have resulted in me collapsing to the floor. After every class I felt relief that it was over and thought that maybe that would be my last class, but as the day went on I started looking forward to the next one.

Days 6-10 were definitely hard, but each day I felt victorious instead of relieved at the end of class. I didn’t just endure and let it happen. I actually did the practice. The soreness started to melt away, and I became less intimidated by certain poses. Sitting in chair pose no longer felt like torture. I started to flow through transitions, albeit while wobbling, from one pose to another instead of seeing each pose as a separate challenge.

On Day 6 I found my people. My people show up on Sunday mornings at 7:00 when the 20-somethings with the cute yoga butts are at home sleeping off their Saturday nights. But Sunday mornings my people show up. They’re the ones who snuck out of the house before the kids woke up. They’re the ones who are squeezing in 75 minutes for themselves before they haul everyone to church and then cook brunch for the family. They don’t have tatoos or the most stylish yoga gear. But these people work hard. On Day 6, we smoked it.

Day 7 needed to happen at the non-summery hour of 6am in order for me not to break my streak. I had a few things scheduled throughout the day, and believe me, if I could’ve chosen another time, I would have. But I’m actually glad I went that early. I liked these people, too. I am these people. They rolled out of bed, just like I did, but now they will head to work feeling like the hardest part of their day is over. That’s exactly how I felt when I taught 6am spin class. After conquering that mountain, I could do anything. Bring it, Day.

What are the chances I can find a 6am yoga class in New York?

Day 8. The reason I had to take the 6am class on Day 7 was that my sister-in-law invited me to a BodyPump class at her YMCA. I adore BodyPump almost as much as I adore my sister-in-law, so there was no way I was going to turn this offer down. I used to be a certified BodyPump instructor and loved teaching it in that terrified love sort of way, but I hadn’t taken a BodyPump class in about a year because it’s not easy to find in the City. If I had kept up with it even as a participant I would not be the weak-armed, 40-something woman that I am today.


If you have a gym nearby that offers BodyPump. GO to it. You will find that strong self that you forgot was there.

I assumed I would feel the way I always feel when I lift weights for the first time after weeks/months of weightliftinglessness. Like Wile E. Coyote flattened at the bottom of a canyon by that huge boulder that inevitably caught up with him. But something incredible happened in that class on Day 8. Power yoga completely erased any potential soreness from Body Pump. I kept waiting for that delayed onset muscle soreness, which happens to my body like clockwork 36 hours after asking it to do something new. It never came.


On Day 9 I started to feel a little panicky. I only had two days left. And after that I’ll purchase another week, and then it will be over! I will be leaving Buffalo and this adorable little studio. I was already starting to miss it. Now that I know about this, how am I going to get on without it?

Day 10 was a powerful class. There wasn’t anything drastically different from what we normally do, but it was a powerful class because I felt powerful. There’s a lot of repetition in power yoga. The flow is repeated, poses are held multiple times, and it’s easy to get lost in the “one more time” mentality. In fact, on Day 9 the only way to keep my mind present was to count the vinyasas. We did 32.

My instructor uses a phrase that I’ve come to love. “You’ve never been in this warrior before…you’ve never been in this chair pose before….” Even though we’ve done it 10 times already today? Even though. This one is brand new. What does this do for me? It gets me out of my head, out of my preconceived notions about what I’ve done before and what I am capable of today. Yesterday’s successes and failures do not define me now. And this reminder pushes me to do my best. Be my best. Open myself up to new possibilities. This is something that I can take with me.

  • I’ve never taught this lesson before.
  • I’ve never run these 3 miles before.
  • I’ve never had this day ahead of me before.
  • I’ve never had this conversation before.
  • I’ve never had this opportunity to love this person before.
  • I’ve never experience this moment before.

If this had been the only thing I’d learned from this yoga challenge it would’ve been enough. But after 10 days of power yoga, here are my other takeaways:

  • Showing up is half the battle.
  • Breath is power.
  • I’m stronger than I think.
  • Being present on my mat spills over to being present in my life.
  • There is no such thing as a yoga body.
  • I need to make yoga a priority in NYC.

And in just 10 short days I’ve noticed these surprising little benefits too:

  • Defined arm and leg muscles
  • Tighter abdominals
  • Better posture
  • Deeper sleep
  • Improved flexibility
  • More positive attitude
  • Increased patience (confirmed by the Husband)
  • Disappearance of “age” aches and pains
  • Brighter complexion
  • A sense of gratefulness

Buffalo friends, give Power Yoga a try! I’ll join you there every time I’m in town!

Readers, dish!

  • NYC friends, do you have a studio to recommend?
  • In what area of your life can you remind yourself that you’ve never done this one before?
  • What positive effects do you experience from exercise?
Summer Goals and a 10-Day Yoga Challenge

Fitness, Healthy Living, New York City, Travel

Summer Goals and a 10-Day Yoga Challenge

7 Comments 06 August 2016

Summer flies when you’re a teacher  Most people think we have 3 months off, but we really only have two. I know. Cry me a river, right? But you really do want us to have two months away from your children. Those 2 months are why we can welcome your kids back to school in the fall with genuine excitement and pour every last ounce of energy and creativity that we rebuilt over the summer into teaching them for another 10 months. By June, we are exhausted and running on the fumes of a distant memory when we passionately decided to change the world one student at a time.

Summer is also time for taking care of things that we let slide during the school year. Things like healthy eating, visiting family, decluttering cupboards, reading books above a fifth grade reading level, lunching with friends, and annual mammograms.

Summer is a great time for setting personal goals. Teachers are required to set goals. We have professional goals that we discuss with our principals, class goals that set tone and expectations, learning goals for each unit, individual student goals that can be educational, behavioral, or social. We are so driven by goals that when I have a few weeks without a goal I feel a little rudderless. I’m really not sure if I could function for two entire months without a goal of some sort.

One of my summer goals is to get back to my yoga practice. I have never been a yogi. When I taught fitness classes, I made sure to attend a yoga class or whip out a Baron Baptiste Yoga in a Box once a week. With all of my spinning, running, BodyPump, and sculpting classes I needed yoga to keep any kind of flexibility. But when I moved to New York, yoga was the first things to drop off my fitness plate. Then lifting weights soon followed. Now I’m lucky if I run or spin 3-4 days each week.

Yoga back in the day

Yoga in my favorite place

So enter this character in the Summer of 2016. Not the character pictured above. Enter a weak-armed, 40-something woman with the memory of yoga being a nice challenge that was pretty great for you. I needed to find a yoga studio.

Each summer we spend about a month out of the city. It’s refreshing to temporarily re-enter suburban life and remind ourselves that there is normalcy in rest of the country. Driving to the grocery store instead of walking seems a luxury. Buying a full cart of groceries, not limiting my purchases to whatever will fit in my backpack and two grocery bags, one for each hand. Wheeling that cart to the car, or better yet, having a clerk wheel it out for me. Then driving the groceries to the house where I unload directly into the kitchen which is 10 steps from the front door. Suburban normalcy.

I expected to have to drive to a yoga studio in the burbs, but to my surprise, there is a Power Yoga Studio literally at the end of the street where we’re staying. So in quintessential NYC form, I strapped on my yoga bag and walked a block to this studio.

They have a new student special consisting of 10 consecutive days for $20. It doesn’t take a Common Core math teacher to figure out that this is an incredible deal. Obviously the deal is sweeter if I go all 10 days. Two dollars per class? You can’t find that in NYC.

Motivated by a good deal, my goal began to clarify. Could I go to power yoga for 10 days in a row? Power yoga translates to hard and fast, and I’m coming from a base of zero. And it’s a 75 minute class in a 90 degree studio. That doesn’t sound too terribly bad, especially when it’s about 95 degrees outside. That’s what I told myself anyway. But I sweat while sitting on my mat waiting for class to start.

Don’t forget that the character in this story is a weak-armed, 40-something woman with the memory of yoga being a nice challenge that was pretty great for you. 

Her memory…


Yoga with a beach view

Well, I started the deal and tentatively set my 10-day goal.

Day 1 was a wake up call. I know that for some reason, whenever I get back into yoga after a period of yogalessness, I have to be careful how much time I spend upside down. A simple downward-facing dog will cause my head to pound so hard that blood vessels burst in my face. I learned this the hard way, by pushing through the discomfort. Pushing through and not listening to your body is very non-yogalike. So I warned the instructor that I’d need to come out of most inversions early. I flowed. I bent. I twisted. I held. I tried not to think about the 20-somethings with cute little butts who made it look so easy. I flowed some more. I wobbled. I warriored. I warriored so many times I wondered if she forgot the rest of the sequence. My face felt like it was going to explode each time I went down, I took breaks, and I made it through. I was so glad that I thought to bring my yoga towel left over from that Groupon package that one month I tried Bikrim. Beads of sweat dotted every inch of my flesh from the start. I left drenched but with my complexion in tact, and I knew that I probably wouldn’t be able to move the next morning.

Day 2 hurt to get out of bed, as expected. But I went. And it was so hard! I had no idea one’s arms could shake like that.

Yoga Text


And this text pretty much sums up my intention not to continue with my goal.

Yoga Text 2

Specifically the “Bahahahahaha!”

But I went back on Day 3 for Power Yoga Hour. This meant that the class was literally an hour, a 60 minute class instead of the 75 that I had been doing. Choosing this class was the only way I could convince myself that I might be able to make it through the third day in a row. It would be shorter.

There are no clocks in a yoga studio. Why aren’t there clocks in a yoga studio??? For teachers whose days are run by the clock with every minute accounted for, time is a huge part of the day. We are constantly looking and checking the clock. Are we on schedule, behind schedule, miraculously ahead of schedule? Do I need to modify the lesson to get to Gym on time? Are they glazing over because they’ve been in their seats too long? How long have Suzie and Sally been in the bathroom? Even outside of school I’m addicted to the clock. I just need to know what time it is. I do have an uncanny ability to guess within minutes the time at any given moment. But then again it could just be that I checked 5 minutes ago.

There are no clocks in this yoga studio, but because of my ability to feel the minutes tick by I knew that this class was soon coming to an end. It just had to be almost over. I was drenched. I was spent. But it kept going. And I kept going. I reached the point where I wondered if the next chaturanga dandasana would be interrupted by a face plant on my mat, because I had no strength left to prevent it. Each vinyasa became a prayer, please don’t let me hit my face, please don’t let me hit my face. The first thing I did after class ended, after I dragged my limp body out of the studio to gather my belongings, was to check the clock. 75 minutes! That hour was not an hour at all! I felt tricked.

Something started to happen the afternoon of Day 3. I had an itch on my upper arm and felt something. Not a bug or a loose hair. It was a bump, the beginning of a muscle where my atrophied tricep used to be. I could actually feel my tricep again! Now mind you it was sore to the touch, but it was there! And walking up stairs I had this feeling like a cute yoga butt was in the making.

Day 4. I dreaded this class more than Day 2 and 3 put together, because I felt soreness with every step as I walked to class. Climbing the stairs I felt fatigued and out of breath. But I was also excited. I was getting stronger, and those extra suggestions like “and now you can try firefly” or “pop up into a headstand” or “flip your dog” didn’t cause my eyes to roll. They just hung in the air as a maybe. Not today, but maybe at some point.

Yoga is supposed to quiet the mind. But I find that my mind is still as active as ever. Here are a few things that were on my mind on Day 4:

(In plank) I can watch sweat drip off my forehead and onto my mat directly in line with my hands. I wonder if that means my alignment is on. Or off.

It must really hurt to get a foot tatoo.

There’s an ant crawling on that girl’s mat! (Girl effortlessly jumps from rag doll back to plank.) No! Little ant!! Did she smush him? Oh, there he is under the edge of her mat. Close one, buddy.

“Leg parallel to the floor.” I must be close. (I check myself.) Nope, nowhere near.

Please don’t let me hit my face.


How many of these are we going to do?

Please don’t let me hit my face.

No way! I did it!! (Wobble. Fall.)

How can my heart be pounding like this when I’m just standing still?

Do I feel so good after class because I spend an hour sweating out toxins or because this torture is finally over?

Leaving it on the mat

Interestingly, I haven’t once thought about what I needed to do that day, school, or things I should be doing but have been putting off. So at least my thoughts were truly in the moment even if I hadn’t reached that quiet space yet.

Then today, Day 5, happened. I had to get up summer early to fit in a class before Saturday’s activities. I woke up without feeling debilitatingly sore. I walked the quiet streets of the suburbs, recognizing that my city neighborhood would already be buzzing with dogs on leashes heading to the park, bead-headed dads stumbling into bodegas for coffee, and women in spandex heading to various fitness studios. Here, I was the only person on the street passed by an occasional car.

Laying on my mat before class, already feeling the sweat beads forming, there was no indication that this class would be any different than the 4 previous days. I scoped out a few people with watches and wondered if I’d be able to sneak peeks to gauge the progress of the class.

And then it started. I moved, I embraced the struggle of holding poses, I flipped my freakin’ dog! I noticed things about my movements that weren’t clear before. My balance was more steady. I realized that if I engaged my legs during chaturanga there was no fear of a face plant. Don’t hear me say that it was easy. It was easy like running 10 miles is easy when you’re training for a marathon. But it no longer felt like running 10 miles when I hadn’t run in a year. And at one point I realized that I wasn’t thinking about anything. I even tried to think of something that might distract me, and I couldn’t. Nothing else really mattered in that moment but the practice. Could yoga be the answer to taming the rat on the exercise wheel in my head?

We shall see!

Readers, dish!

  • Do you practice yoga?
  • What kind of yoga do you like?
  • How do you bring your mind back to your practice?
  • What are your summer goals?


Gluten-Free Retreat: Things That…

Gluten-Free, Travel, Vegan

Gluten-Free Retreat: Things That…

6 Comments 01 August 2016

I’m thoroughly enjoying a break from real life, submersing myself in things that I love, learning from others, and sleeping 9 hours each night. I’m appreciating moments rather than moving on to the next one. I’m savoring the flavors rather than inhaling for sustenance. I’m digging into the now and remembering how densely delicious it is. And I haven’t once missed my book of lists with tabbed sections and sublists of lists.

I’m enjoying the essence of things.

Things that are spreadable.



Things that are sticky.



Things that are off balance.



Things that are old.



Things from long ago.



Things that are better with toppings.




Things I had forgotten about.


Things that are savory.



Things that are sweet.




Things that are green.



Things that make this heart happy.

Readers, dish!

  • Which picture do you want to know more about?
  • Where do you go just to “be”?
Gluten-Free Retreat: A Full Day

Gluten-Free, Travel, Vegan, Vegetarian

Gluten-Free Retreat: A Full Day

5 Comments 30 July 2016

Most summers I enjoy a long weekend with gluten-free blogger friends in the country. The days are filled with relaxing, walking, art journaling, chatting, yoga, writing, shopping, cooking, blogging, and eating. Lots of eating. Here’s a snippet of my day:

Walking with a sweet friend while being watched.


Making sure this little guy made it safely across the road.


Breakfasting. A throwback to pre-gluten-free days as this tasted exactly like my memories of Entenmann’s.


Fortified with a green smoothie, of course.


And a new product that I’m crazy about.


Swapples! Covered in vegan cream cheese compliments of Valerie of City|Life|Eats. I think this flavor was my favorite.


They were also incredible last night with That Chili with the Mushrooms by Shirley of Gluten Free Easily.


Snacking at Kickshaws Downtown Market, a local whole foods market that caters to the gluten-free vegan crowd.


Jackfruit and sauerkraut on vegan and gluten-free sourdough bread. (If you need your own vegan pulled-pork experience, try Johnna’s recipe. Even carnivores like it.)


And a strawberry shortcake cupcake for dessert. Do snacks qualify as dessert-ending meal?

Just in case I need more to look forward to, these vegan, gluten-free cinnamon rolls are on the counter waiting for breakfast.


Or a maybe a midnight snack.

And just for fun, these caught my eye today.


Ew, right?

Full and content, I’m off to bed.

Readers, dish!

  • What do you do to let down?
  • How do you fill up when you’re feeling depleted?
Fong’s Pizza – Gluten-Free Crazy Pizza

GF Friendly Restaurants, Gluten-Free, Travel, Vegetarian

Fong’s Pizza – Gluten-Free Crazy Pizza

4 Comments 29 July 2016

I had a chance to visit Fong’s Pizza in DesMoines, Iowa last summer when visiting my mom. She picked me up from the airport and asked, “Are you hungry?”


Mom researched and found a pizza place that had great reviews. That’s all I needed to hear. Mom and I are adventurous when it comes to gluten-free food. But when we pulled up to the restaurant we had second thoughts.


This in no way looked like a pizza place. It looked like a Chinese restaurant. I suppose we shouldn’t have been as surprised with a name like “Fong’s”. We laughed, decided we weren’t feeling it, and went to a Mexican restaurant.


A few months ago while having dinner in New York with Johnna of In Johnna’s Kitchen, we were discussing gluten-free options in DesMoines, lamenting the closing of the all-vegan New World Cafe, and somehow Fong’s Pizza came up. I must have looked at Johnna like she had two Chinese dragon heads when she said that Fong’s was great and “so much fun”.

Were we talking about the same place?

But if you are going to trust anyone’s restaurant recommendations, trust Johnna’s. She travels all over the country (world) sharing her restaurant experiences in a series called “I Ate Here”.

So a few weeks ago, after sharing Johnna’s rave report, Mom and I mustered the courage to eat at Fong’s. Just one glance at the menu told me that this was going to be an adventurous meal.

Egg roll pizza?

Mac and cheese pizza?

Surrounded by waving kitties and tiki glasses, I had to remind myself that this was a pizza place. But what kind of decor should a “crazy pizza” pizza place have anyway?

I can’t remember the description of the special pizza of the day that the waiter rattled off, mostly because it sounded nonsensical. It just didn’t compute as something remotely close to the paradigm for a pizza. But I swear that it included the words topped with french fries and deep fried.

Crazy pizza!

Mom and I didn’t opt for the crazy; instead we split a very conservative and tasty Thai pizza (with chicken on her half) on gluten-free dough. Adventurous enough for us. Fong’s does have vegetarian options, but the majority of the menu has meat toppings or fillings. It is Iowa after all. They even have a barbecue-type pizza called the Iowan. I was eying the Vegan Supreme made with Daiya, but when I’m in Iowa, eating vegan is hard and less of a priority. Eating vegetarian and gluten-free is my main concern.

I highly recommend that you check out Fong’s Pizza if you’re in DesMoines. Also check out Johnna’s experience as she can give you even more details on the atmosphere and the delicious looking drinks. (We had the 5:00pm, G-rated version appropriate for minors and seniors.)

Readers, dish!

  • What’s the craziest pizza you’ve ever had?
  • Have you been to Fong’s Pizza? How was your experience?
Gluten-Free Food Fun with Mom

GF Product Reviews, GF Recipes, Gluten-Free, Travel, Vegetarian

Gluten-Free Food Fun with Mom

7 Comments 18 July 2016

Time with Mom is always refreshing. In our family, visiting Mom means time in the country. And this girl needed a serious reprieve from the craziness of the City. I finished the school year, took a day to pack, and was off to the Midwest for some much needed RnR.

We did the small town 4th of July fireworks shows, yes plural, walked picturesque farms, and even picked fresh fruit.



Mom is a gluten-free expert. She has been gluten free for about a month longer than I have. I still remember that phone call 12 years ago when Mom told me that she had tested positive, it was a hereditary condition, and that I should be tested too. Of course I balked that I didn’t have any of the classic stomach symptoms, but at the time I had no idea the full range of other ailments that would disappear within a few short months of going gluten free. So, yay Mom!

Breakfast at Mom’s usually starts with a smoothie, because I know that the rest of my meals will be outside of my normal eating patterns. But at least one morning Mom will make her waffles using Pamela’s Gluten-Free Baking and Pancake Mix. YUM!


The first dinner we made came from Mom’s stack of recipes that she saves to try with me. We LOVED these Zucchini Lasagna Roll-Ups. They’re vegetarian and gluten-free, but definitely not vegan as we used regular cheese. I loved my Mom’s simple little Oxo handheld mandoline slicer. It’s so small and compact that you’d better believe I’m going to find a little nook in my itty bitty city kitchen to keep one.

The thinly sliced zucchini noodles softened so perfectly that we didn’t even miss the lasagna noodles. And did I mention that these tasted amazing? I look forward to making them at home using Daiya and a vegan ricotta. Does anyone have a good dairy-free brand that they like?


My favorite dessert was definitely this strawberry shortcake, and what a festive choice for the 4th of July. Although the cake wasn’t vegan, the coconut whipped cream was. You can find my recipe here.


Mom found the Angel Food Cake Mix at Aldi’s. She’s lucky to have an Aldi’s just around the corner.


It doesn’t make the most beautiful cake.


But slathered in strawberries and coconut cream, who cares?!


I’m heading back to the City feeling rested and happily full. Thanks, Mom!

Readers dish!

  • Vegans, what brand of vegan ricotta cheese do you recommend?
  • Where do you go for RnR?
  • What traditions do you have when visiting family?
Banana Chai Chocolate Chip Cookies (Vegan, GF)

GF Recipes, Gluten-Free, Vegan, Vegetarian

Banana Chai Chocolate Chip Cookies (Vegan, GF)

5 Comments 06 July 2016

When I visit my mom we like to experiment in the kitchen. And of course I love the luxury of working in a real kitchen that can fit more than one person! She has counter space galore, every pan and kitchen gadget you could ever wish for, and a pantry filled with gluten-free baking ingredients. In a nutshell, I have kitchen envy.

My mom does the typical preparations for my arrival. She prepares my room, stocks the fridge with fruits and veggies, and prints out a stack of recipes that she’s been waiting to try. Mom lives with a hardcore carnivore, so my visits provide the perfect opportunities to experiment with vegan and vegetarian recipes.

Yesterday, we played with a cookie recipe that really only has two ingredients – bananas and rolled oats. It’s so simple that I could even make this in my itty bitty city kitchen! Mom found the original recipe from Camila’s site Power Hungry, and all we had to do was decide on our add ins. We loved the results so I thought I’d share.

We opted for a chai flavor, so first we made a chai mix.

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By the Way Bakery

GF Friendly Restaurants, Gluten-Free, New York City, Vegetarian

By the Way Bakery

8 Comments 25 June 2016

There’s a neighborhood gem called By the Way Bakery that I’ve mentioned before, and it’s about time I show it off. Unfortunately, or fortunately, it’s not on my daily path to and from work, or I’d stop there every day. I have to make a conscious effort to walk a few blocks in the opposite direction to enjoy these tasty treats. And out of sight out of mind is probably a good thing or I just might be a daily customer.

By the Way Bakery is a gluten-free, dairy-free bakery on the Upper West Side where every delicious item is made by hand. Everything I’ve sampled is so light, fluffy, and scrumptious that you’d never know it was gluten free, which was the original intent of the founder, to make delicious baked goods that “by the way” just happen to be gluten free. Owner and founder, Helene Godin, left a successful law career of 20 years to open this bakery which has expanded to three locations including Westchester, the Upper East Side, and the Upper West Side. To hear her inspiring story click here.

I usually pop in on a Saturday to grab a small treat like a cookie or a muffin.


But if I’m having a chocolate craving, these brownies are the cure. They are the most delicious brownies on the planet. I swear.


They also have a case filled with beautiful scones, tea cakes, and mini cakes for those wanting a few bites of fancy sophistication, but I’m a simple girl satisfied with a good old-fashioned cookie.


By the Way creates specialty cakes like this Pear Ginger Cake.


And this Sour Cherry Coffee Cake as well as layer cakes and challah.


But my favorite Saturday treats are definitely their muffins. I love the Blueberry Corn Muffins.


My current favorite muffin is the Cinnamon Chocolate Chip. Oh my heavens, it is to die for with a crumbly coffee cake-type topping and gooey chocolate chips inside.


Just last month we had a staff breakfast at school, and I brought a few dozen By the Way muffins for the gluten-free teachers. Of course, they were a huge hit with the gluten-eaters as well!

The next time you’re in the City, I recommend grabbing a box or two of By the Way goodies to take home. Or better yet, let me know and I’ll meet you there!


Readers, dish!

  • Have you tried By the Way Bakery’s goodies?
  • What’s your favorite all gluten free bakery?
  • What’s your favorite kind of muffin?
Treat House: Gluten and Dairy Free

GF Friendly Restaurants, GF Recipes, New York City, Vegan, Vegetarian

Treat House: Gluten and Dairy Free

11 Comments 18 June 2016

I’ve walked by this storefront in my neighborhood at least 100 times. Even though they have a sign in the window that says they sell gluten-free treats, I really wasn’t tempted to check them out until a friend wanted to stop in. Why did I wait so long? Treat House is a rice crispy treat shop, and if I’m going to enjoy a gluten-free treat it has to involve chocolate. Well, it actually has to be filled with chocolate, drenched in chocolate, and then dusted with chocolate.

What I didn’t realize was that the rice crispy square itself is just the beginning. There’s plenty of room for spreading, dipping, topping, and sprinkling with chocolate or any other of your favorite flavors.


The creators at Treat House seem to be limited only by their imaginations.


Which doesn’t seem to be a problem for them. They have 12 original flavors and seasonal flavors that rotate throughout the year.


It definitely wasn’t an issue to find that much needed bit of chocolate.


All of their treats are gluten-free, dairy-free, and nut-free unless specified otherwise. It’s pretty obvious that the gluten-containing flavors are s’mores, chocolate pretzel, and cookies and cream. But as always, don’t assume anything is gluten free just because there’s a sign in the window. Ask. Always.


They even had a little something for Cinco de Mayo.


Take them home in packs of 1, 2, 4, 12, or 24.


And this chocolate chip treat is vegan!


Here’s a flashback to my Cocoa Crispy Brown Rice Treats that I “healthed up” a bit. Vegan, gluten-free, and sweetened with agave instead of marshmallows, these were delicious.

2 Crispy Rice Muffins by Gluten-Free Cat

Readers, dish!

  • Are you a rice crispy treat fan?
  • What are your “must haves” when you splurge on a treat?

A Curious Girl in the Gluten-Free World

I'm a curious girl, wife, teacher, fitness fanatic, gluten-free foodie, high-raw vegan, and Mama Cat living in NYC. I've made the transition from baking and cooking gluten-free to creating raw vegan recipes that are naturally gluten free. My gluten intolerance opened up my diet to a whole new world of nutritious plant-based foods. While I'm not 100% vegan, it's my favorite way to eat, and making and sharing raw foods makes me giddy. Living in the City has its joys and challenges, and I enjoy sharing my experiences with you.

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