259 E. Rand Rd, Mount Prospect, IL
Free of: Peanut and tree nut
Stars of the Show: Red Velvet and Carrot Cake Cupcakes
Why We Love It: The owners know firsthand the unexpected challenge of finding safe treats, their son is peanut- and tree-nut allergic. Along with about a dozen daily cupcake flavors and classic cookies, they fulfill orders for layer cakes and cake pops.
248 Broome St, New York City, NY
and 236 North Larchmont Blvd, Los Angeles, CA
Free of: Dairy, egg, gluten and soy
Stars of the Show: Salted Caramel and Cinnamon Sugar Baked Donuts
Why We Love It: The store’s famed founder, Erin McKenna, isn’t shy on sharing secrets of her popular all-natural baking. She provides recipes and technique tips in her two cookbooks and new app.
323 S Cross St, Little Rock, AR
Free of: Gluten, peanut, soy and tree nut
Stars of the Show: Everyone’s Bread and Hot Milk Cake
Why We Love It: Just steps from the state capital in a smartly renovated old car dealership, their selection is unsurpassed: sandwich bread, pizza, cinnamon rolls, cookies, custom cakes, cupcakes, pies tarts and take-home pie crusts. No surprise they’ve been voted runner-up twice for the best bakery in town.
1224 Arroyo Ave., San Carlos, CA
Free of: Peanut, wheat and gluten
Star of the Show: Triple Berry Muffins & Double Chocolate Brownies
Why We Love It: This family-run bakery was built from scratch to ensure that the facility was completely free of any gluten-containing products. With freshly baked sweet and savory treats and sandwich breads, this bakery has the passion and zest for all gluten-free baked goods.
Sticky Fingers Bakery
1370 Park Rd NW, Washington, DC
Free of: Dairy and egg
Stars of the Show: Chocolate Love & Cookies ‘n’ Cake Cupcakes
Why We Love It: Established in 1999, this quirky eatery was a vegan dining pioneer and has proven their worth by continuously baking cupcakes, cakes, donuts, cookies, brownies and sticky buns that tempt customers from miles away.
2019 Colley Avenue, Norfolk, VA & 1200 N Battlefield, Chesapeake, VA
Free of: Peanut, tree nuts, wheat and gluten (Dairy-, egg- and soy-free options available)
Stars of the Show: HoHo Heaven and French Toast Cupcakes
Why We Love It: Working closely with their wheat- and nut-free bakery next door (The Food Allergy Bakery), they have created one of their most popular treats: the Crazy 8 cupcakes and donuts, which are free from all top 8 food allergens.
Annie Mays Sweet Café
3110 Frankfort Ave., Louisville, KY
Free of: Peanut, tree nuts, soy and gluten
Star of the Show: Vegan and Allergy-Friendly Oatmeal Cream Pies
Why We Love It: These ladies know how to keep things fresh and free of all top 8 allergens. By milling their own flour blend from whole grains they ensure that the goodies you pick up are made to the highest dietary standards.
Alisa Fleming is a contributing editor to Allergic Living magazine and the author of Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance and Casein Free Living, and founder of Godairyfree.org.