Photo courtesy of Joan's GF Greatbakes

Photo courtesy of Joan's GF Greatbakes

Bagels are not just a breakfast staple for New Yorkers. The rest of us love a good bagel as well, though many transplanted New Yorkers say that one can not find a decent bagel in Atlanta, GA. I beg to differ as Panera Bread makes a pretty good (gluten) bagel – though it’s not as good those from H&H in the “Big Apple”.

Over a year after my celiac diagnosis, I came across a review of Joan’s GF Greatbakes bagels online. By then I’d tried every frozen gluten-free bagel I could buy locally but I never finished one bagel before throwing them out.  I’ve probably never read a more glowing review of anything gluten-free than the review of Joan’s bagels. When I found another such review – and yet another – I immediately placed my order and hoped for the best.

One of the differences (besides the taste and texture) between Joan’s gluten-free bagels and others on the market is that you have to bake them yourself. As they rise in the oven and the smell of baking bread wafts through the kitchen, the anticipation builds about how they’ll actually taste.

Everyone who knows anything about gluten-free baking understands that smells and looks can be very deceiving. In the case of Joan’s bagels however, the taste and texture exceeded my wildest expectations. I started worrying that maybe somehow the company made gluten products and sent me the wrong item. I checked the plastic container (they did not come in a bag back then) but the label indicated the bagels were gluten-free. They also happened to be the best bagels I’d ever had, regardless of ingredients!

Joan’s GF Greatbakes also offers incredible Sandwich Rolls, English Muffins and Pizza Crusts. The folks at Joan’s were kind enough to send me their brand new - and quite excellent - Italian Bread to try recently. It’s so exciting to see the bread rising on the counter and then in the oven. The smell alone will make you think you’re walking by an Italian Trattoria in NYC!

It drives me nuts to pay to ship food in but Joan’s products are worth the splurge. I treat them like gold and eat them sparingly. I also order with friends to save on the freight charge. But I must have my Joan’s Everything Bagels when a bagel craving hits – absolutely nothing else will do!

The way Joan’s company came to be is very interesting. She found out she could not eat gluten many years ago. To say there were not many gluten-free “replacement” foods back then is quite the understatement. Joan acclimated to her gluten-free diet and got used to doing without her bagels and her favorite Brooklyn style pizza. But when Joan’s grandchildren had to go gluten-free, Joan decided that unlike her, they would not do without anything.

Joan got busy and created some of the best gluten-free products on the market anywhere.  These days we are lucky to be able to enjoy the wonderful gluten-free products that she painstakingly created with love for her grandchildren! If you have not tried Joan’s products yet, you can take advantage of their online sale through 9-25-09.

Special thanks to Kathleen at BeFreeForMe for letting us know about this fabulous 15% off discount offer. Sale prices are reflected on the website now. Click here to find out more about Joan’s GF Greatbakes products and where they are sold. They’re so good that  that you’ll be proud to serve them to the gluten eaters in your life. If you’re like me however, you might not feel like sharing!

If you can buy Joan’s GF Greatbakes products near you, please let us know where you found them.