Refined sugar-free   Gluten-free   Wheat free   Soy-free   Dairy-free   Egg-free   Vegan   Kosher
BabyCakes NYC

Cookbook Probies? We're Here to Help!

| 65 Comments

Publishers Weekly just posted an article addressing how cookbook authors are responding to reader complaints. I was thrilled when Lynn Andriani, the reporter who wrote the article, contacted me for a quote because some BabyCakes cookbook readers have had a hard time with my recipes while others are having amazing results with everything they try. I even put out this video to help people out with common mistakes they were making--I really, really want to help!

BabyCakes NYC: Some Baking Tips! from BabyCakes NYC on Vimeo.

I was sad to see that the article posted a list of negative reviews about my cookbook from a couple readers without balancing it out with positive reviews. The reality is, we get far more emails about successes than failures. If someone emails us citing failures we take the time to email each one back personally to get to the root of the problem. After a while, I realized that so many people were making the same mistakes so I decided to make the video above so that everyone would be able to enjoy better success. So far, it's helped so much. I get so excited when people stop by the bakery and tell me how the video helped guide them through recipes they weren't making right and that they now mastered the recipe. It's even inspired me to make more baking instructional videos for other recipes in the cookbook (more to come on that).

So why do people only post the negative? I don't know. Maybe people reach out on the internet when they are having problems more than they would if recipes are coming out right. In the end (and I can't say it enough) I'm here to help. These recipes aren't as easy as normal cookbooks, admittedly! I didn't master them in one try and I made tons of mistakes along the way too. But if you stick to it, you'll have a kitchen full of delicious desserts and even a few go-to recipes that will never leave your memory.

Until next time...

65 Comments

I've only made the cornbread so far and it turned out great! My dad (who is neither vegan nor gluten-free) said it was the best cornbread he's ever had. My husband (who is gluten-free) and I (who am vegan) really enjoyed it too! Thanks so much for the cookbook. Now, I can make baked goods both my husband and I can enjoy. I only wish I had time to make more, but with a 9 week old, I find that I'm spending more time salivating over the pictures than actually having time to bake. Oh well, hopefully soon.
Thanks!
Laurie Beijen (San Francisco, CA)

Good for you Erin!!! There are so many haters out there and it would be so easy for you to just ignore them. Instead, you made this awesome video to help out. I love it. I found it so helpful. Thanks for all that you do to make life easier for millions!

Hi - - I am baking these for a gluten intolerant friend as a Thanksgiving surprise.

I got your cookbook some weeks ago and this is my first experience baking gluten free - I made the chocolate cupcakes (used hot coffee) and the chocolate frosting today. I am amazed at the look, the texture, aroma, moistness and feel of the cakes and texture and appearance of the frosting.

I tasted the cake batter - it did not taste "wow" if you know what I mean - tasted them after baking - better but not moorish. Same with the frosting - - - so without the benefit of tasting your cupcakes on site I have no reference point.

I presume they should taste sweeter - - I used Whole Foods light agave nectar - Scharfifnberger unsweetened cocoa - everything else as listed.

Any suggestions would be appreciated to make them taste as good as yours in the bakery must - - - many thanks as I only have a week plus left before the holiday.

All the Best,

Richard

San Francisco

I would just like to add that as a baker I think what you have done for not only the many who cannot tolerate some of the conventional baking ingredients but for the population on the whole, especially children, your ingredients are much healthier and still satisfying to our sweet tooth. I applaud you for your perseverance in all the testing (and expense) you had to endure to get the perfect result! That being said I think maybe the expense of wasting ingredients and in some cases having to reorder them online when the recipe doesn't turn out the way it should could be frustrating for those of us who do this for friends and non-profit functions.

Hi Erin,

I live far, far away from you guys, in Barcelona. I purchased your book through amazon because I love what you do, and have since tried to bake a few things. I have to say here that whenever I have had trouble knowing how to make something or needing tips I have sent you guys and email and I always got a response immediately with enthusiastic and informative help. So MANY, MANY THANKS!

Hi from Memphis!
I'm also a baker and my boyfriend's mother has recently discovered that she has some problems with gluten, so of course I went to your cookbook to make her a special treat. So far everything has turned out beautifully.
To the complainers out there, I say this: read the instructions. Read the introduction and ingredient details that Erin has provided at the beginning of the book. Seriously, all the info you need is right there in the cookbook!
Thanks for the lovely recipes and keep rocking!
Kat

I used the cookbook for the first time last Friday. I tried the vanilla cupcakes and the recipe worked perfectly!!!!!!!! THE CUPCAKES WERE A TOTAL SUCCESS! I did watch the vimeo video beforehand; it was helpful to know the coconut oil had to be melted! I don't know if that is explained in the book but I think if I hadn't seen the video, I might had had problems with it. Anyhow, , the video is FUN and USEFUL! AND THE BOOK IS FANTASTIC! Total fan of babycakes.

I bought the book just out of curiosity, AND so I could make cupcakes for my celiac and vegan buddies. All of my cake turned out BEAUTIFUL, and I have you to thank. Obviously, as a college student, I can understand the "expense" part. However, I bet people just aren't being resourceful. For example, the raspberry scone recipe is just a few ingredients, many of which can be substituted.

A few tips for the cookbook:

*Store your Xanthan Gum in a way that makes it easy to access, and so that you don't lose any of it. It may seem expensive, but a little goes a long way: so don't waste it!

*Don't waste your coconut oil, and substitute the canola oil that Erin recommends if you have to.

If you can't do the agave, I've also tried brown sugar with good results. Just BE CAREFUL. If someone with Celiac, or gluten sensitivities (sp), also has a sugar sensitivity...don't mess it up.

*Sometimes you can just use one type of flour (brown rice or garbanzo/fava bean) instead of two. So if you see one kind on sale at Whole Foods, but the other is a bit more, try using just one! See what happens!

amazon.com does AWESOME deals for buying in bulk

Basically, follow the recipe EXACTLY. If you feel like you can swing a few of the substitutions, there are ways of doing it that saves money, but does NOT sacrifice the wonderful taste :)

I bought the book just out of curiosity, AND so I could make cupcakes for my celiac and vegan buddies. All of my cake turned out BEAUTIFUL, and I have you to thank. Obviously, as a college student, I can understand the "expense" part. However, I bet people just aren't being resourceful. For example, the raspberry scone recipe is just a few ingredients, many of which can be substituted.

A few tips for the cookbook:

*Store your Xanthan Gum in a way that makes it easy to access, and so that you don't lose any of it. It may seem expensive, but a little goes a long way: so don't waste it!

*Don't waste your coconut oil, and substitute the canola oil that Erin recommends if you have to.

If you can't do the agave, I've also tried brown sugar with good results. Just BE CAREFUL. If someone with Celiac, or gluten sensitivities (sp), also has a sugar sensitivity...don't mess it up.

*Sometimes you can just use one type of flour (brown rice or garbanzo/fava bean) instead of two. So if you see one kind on sale at Whole Foods, but the other is a bit more, try using just one! See what happens!

amazon.com does AWESOME deals for buying in bulk

Basically, follow the recipe EXACTLY. If you feel like you can swing a few of the substitutions, there are ways of doing it that saves money, but does NOT sacrifice the wonderful taste :)

Erin,

I received your cookbook as a birthday gift. Since I am gluten free, I am so very excited. Yesterday I made the pumpkin muffins and the ginger bread. I baked both of them a lot longer than you suggested and they were still not done. I live in Santa Fe, NM at 7000 feet. I know the altitude affects baking. I did not melt the coconut oil first. Could that have been the problem? I filled the bread pan nearly to the top. I suppose that could have been the problem for the ginger bread. I would love to have your opinion about the altitude. I am not going to give up. I so appreciate this cookbook.

I have not been able to find evaporated cane juice. Can I buy it on line?

After a few mishaps, I thought I'd share my latest success story here. I burned a ton of cookies and ruined two apple toasties in preparation for Thanksgiving... so I came to this site and watched the video.

I found out that I also did not melt the coconut oil and I filled my pan too high for the apple toasties. Two days after Thanksgiving, I decided to try again.

I still had plenty of roasted apples left so I had a go at the apple cinnamon muffins. I was out of the coconut oil so I substituted grapeseed oil. Previously I had good luck using avocado oil in the carrot cupcakes (but still can't get the icing quite right).

My oven is a bit off even if I use a thermometer, it still has its problems. So this time I remained in the kitchen and watched the muffins very closely... so close that I could tell they were done before the timer went off (and I baked them for about three minutes less). They came out perfectly! I was so excited I had to eat one before they cooled, steaming apples and all, but so worth it. Now to try the cookies again!

WOW!!! You guys have made my day! SO nice to see so many of you enjoying the recipes and becoming quite the gluten-free, vegan bakers! I love it.

Thanks to Sandra and Kat for adding some useful tips for other readers, it totally helps!

Sherry--if you watch the video you can get some great tips as far as pan filling and melting coconut oil goes. I sadly don't know how altitude would change baking times and temperature though--I'm sorry!

Keep baking Pam! You've got the hang of it now!

Thank you again everyone!

I can't say enough about the cookbook. I have given some away as presents to my GF Friends.
I made the cornbread for Thanksgiving this year and it was a super hit with all my friends.
I have to say a huge thanks for sharing your recipes with all of us. My first time to BabyCakes I cried! And now I can have the greatest sweets ever anytime!
Thank you sooo Much!!
Yvonne

Just bought the book and got it in the mail yesterday. Made the vanilla cupcakes and all three of my children LOVED them. 5 stars on that. None of them were crazy about the icing. I followed directions to the t and the coconut oil definitely dominated the flavor of the icing. Do you offer another recipe for frosting that tastes more like vanilla?

I am really looking forward to making everything in this book. It all looks so amazing.

We are not vegans (yet), but I will be serving these cupcakes up at my daughter's birthday party this weekend just in case any of her classmates have food sensitivities, even the ones who don't know it yet.

Thanks so much for this!

I came here to complain about the poor instructions in the 2 Babycakes recipes I've tried. After watching the video, I'm even more pissed off. Where in the recipe instructions for banana bread does it say not to put all of the batter in one pan? Does it say somewhere to only fill half full and make muffins out of the remainder? I don't think so. I made the recipe exactly as stated and ended up with half of the banana bread on the bottom of my oven. Another example, I know to melt the coconut oil before measuring. How hard would it have been to say 1 cup melted coconut oil? Shame on you for being so cavalier in your instructions. If you can't pay enough attention to these kinds of details, then hire an editor who can. Oh, and have regular home cooks TEST the recipes!

wow. People here are taking it way too seriously. I don't think there's ever been a perfect cookbook or recipe out there, and we all know that many things can go wrong with any recipe even if we follow instructions all the way through. Isn't that the fun of baking though? The trial and error and the delicious rewards when everything goes right? I for one did not know about the oil but the muffins came out fine anyway. As for the muffins or cookies that didn't, well, I still loved the experience of baking and I still love (love!) the babycakes book.

@Jess...With all due respect, when you pay for a cookbook with recipes and are told more than once in that book to follow the directions to the t, they should include every little detail. I, for one, don't enjoy the trial and error of baking, which is why I buy books with recipes.

If I had written a cookbook which left unanswered questions, I'd be looking for this type of feedback for my revised version.

I left my icing sit in the fridge, covered all night and I am still not enjoying the flavor. Anxiously awaiting a response.

Hey Christy!

Why don't you call us @212.677.5047 and we'll try to get to the bottom of your problem! Email is also good: info@babycakesnyc.com

Thanks!

Hi, Manuela!

Here is Sangria from Slovakia, Europe. I would like to ask you what kind of flour did you use in your baking instead of Bob´s Red Mill? I am looking for ingredients right now and wondered if there is someone from Europe to share some tips :).

Thank you for letting me know in advance!

Kind regards, Sangria

I just made the chocolate chip cookies but they turned out really flat. Is there any way to prevent this? Thanks!

Hi Rebecca,

Try adding 1/3 more flour. Did you melt your coconut oil first?

Let us know...


i have had great results with the scones and the biscuits. Tonight I made the banana bread and things did not go well. I followed the recipe to the letter, making sure to melt my coconut oil, but since i did not know that i was supposed to only use part of the batter and use the rest for muffins i have ended up with half of my bread on the bottom of the oven. It is still not finished baking and my house smells like burning! I have been 2/3 overall and LOVE the biscuits and the scones. Overall a great cookbook, but the banana bread recipe needs some tweaking for the second edition.

Hi Babycakes! I was beyond excited when I found your cookbook. I have yet to try any of the recipes due to the fact that I'm gathering all the tools you listed as must haves in your book. I'm having trouble finding the 9x3 round cake pan and the 7x4x3 loaf pan. So far I've found a 9x2 3/4 round cake pan and a 7x4x2.5 loaf pan. Will it affect the outcome if I use those sizes? I'm sacred to even try it without your okay, since the ingredients are so expensive. Please get back to me as soon as you can. Thank you!

Lara--sometimes ending up with too much batter happens to the best of us! Usually it has to do with over-measuring but we are no strangers to it at the bakery. Some of my most seasoned bakers end up in the same situation. Here's the thing: just fill your pan halfway high, no matter what pan it might be. If there is left overs, just make them into muffins or cupcakes or anything else you may have the pan for.

Tiana, go ahead and use the pan you have just fill it halfway high and you'll be ok. Keep your eye on baking time because it will be different since the pan will hold a different amount of batter but watch the video above to get some tips on how you can tell it's done.

Best of Luck!!!

I cannot find a 7x4x3-inch loaf pan anywhere, even online. I just spent $80 on ingredients for the mint icebox cake and am a little frustrated.

It is real nice how you attribute baking failures to the stupidity of the home baker. I use agave nectar (not guava), I do melt my coconut oil, I did buy Bob's Red Mill AP GF flour. However, you cannot possibly expect people to know is to fill their loaf pans halfway when the instructions do not tell them to. Some bakers, myself included, would give pause to filling a loaf pan to the very brim, but that is a detail you cannot omit from your cookbook. How on earth is my teenage daughter going to know that? How about the newly diagnosed Celiac who is unaccustomed to the behavior of GF batters and doughs ? They are trusting your directions.

I know that even the best cookbooks have some errors, and that frequently, the author is not to blame. However, the good ones have an easy to find list of corrections and they spare us the condescending videos. How about a easy to find list of errata (ie. Banana Bread recipe goes from 6 bananas to 1.5c bananas) and clarifications (ie. melting coconut oil, fill pans halfway)? Perhaps that information would be easiest to find under the 'cookbook' tab that is located at the top of your website. Please, consolidate is and put it somewhere. It's is really frustrating do have to dig through your blog posts and comments to find this information. It would probably cut down on the negativity swirling around the cookbook that is on blogs, message boards, and book reviews.

Has anyone tried Palm Fruit Oil instead of Cocunut oil? Results? It is lower in saturated fat.
Love the cookbook!
xg69p5

Hi Nicole! Great advise! We'll look into finding an easier way for people to find corrections and tips all in one place. Thanks for that!

Kathleen--I haven't tried palm fruit oil but I can imagine that it wouldn't work out. However, the frosting gets thick when the coconut oil hardens in the fridge so I would be hesitant to sub it out for that recipe. Let me know how you do!

Kathleen--I meant to write that I can't imagine why it WOULDN'T work out. Sorry! Go for it!

I think a number of people have failed to read the ingredients list where it clearly states the coconut oil must be melted (p. s 21) and the banana bread recipe where it also clearly states 'fill the prepared pan halfway with batter. See 'Batter Spectacular'' on page 63 for ideas for using leftover batter.' While complaints should be taken seriously, complainers should first make sure they have their information correct. This recipe book is fantastic and baking is a learned skill so have fun with it! If anyone is baking in the UK and have any tips on substitutions or where to find some of the ingredients it would be much appreciated.

Got the book about a month ago, read it cover to cover. Enjoyed it immensely! Started baking right away even though I didn't have all my ingredients lol
After a lil trial and error I think I'm on the right path.
So far I've made the Apple-Cinnamon muffins, vanilla cupcakes ( I had 4 myself), brownies , banana bread and the icing after receiving my rice milk powder in the mail! My daughter loved everything :)
The icing was interesting, smooth and lite and not too sweet but I could definitely taste the coconut..
Keep up the good work Erin my daughter's tummy thanks u! :)

** As a side note I am by no means a novice baker but learning to bake gluten free can be challenging, my advice is to take a deep breath, do a lil research, hang in there and keep on trying! I know the ingredients are expensive but it will be worth your while, good luck all! **

Your cookbook has become my baking bible!! It's one of only 2 cookbooks (the other is America's Best Recipes) that remains on my kitchen counter all the time-never put away!
My son has milk, egg & nut allergies and before your cookbook I was left using powdered egg substitute in regular recipes which resulted in average tasting cakes that would fall apart as soon as they were touched. ARGH! I'm now thrilled to say that I volunteer to bake all the cakes, cookies, etc for his class and no one knows the better. They only know how delicious the treats are!
I can't wait for your next one! Keep up the good work!

Sorry, but I read the cookbook and Babycakes/ Erin explains incredibly clear to melt the coconut oil and explains other directions very well. Lashing out at someone with hostility, especially when you haven't checked your facts, is silly and rude. This cookbook was meant to be read. In the beginning, she explains everything and what type of ingredients, how to cook, etc. If it wasn't re-written word for word exactly at your recipe' you were using- it's not their fault- you should learn use the cookbook properly. It's like the people screaming that not every recipe' is gluten free- it clearly states it on the cover. Be thankful someone took the time to care and breathe.

You guys are so sweet(blush blush)! Thank you...

I have had the cookbook since the first day it was available and I am STILL excited every time I see it! I have tried baking many things from the book (cupcakes, frosting, gingerbread, biscuits, muffins, cookies) and so far all that turned out were the chocolate chip cookies. : (
However, I am NOT giving up! I still have hope!
My unresolved problems include things coming out not fully baked (even though I've baked them for longer than needed). I am going to try putting less batter in the pan/muffin tin.
I have yet to get the frosting to set up, and it does not taste like the frosting from Babycakes. It's not very sweet at all and tastes mostly like coconut oil.
But what I'm having the biggest issue with is that everything is tasting like coconut oil. Could I be using too much? Maybe not using enough of the spices/ flavorings? I am following the recipes very closely! Anyone else having this problem?
Thank you so much, I am very excited to get the recipes right!

A couple of thoughts ...
Definitely use the coconut oil Erin recommends - the results are worth the price. The first time I made the chocolate chip cookies (the day after I received my cookbook!) I refused to wait for the mail order, rushed out to Whole Foods, and ended up with some very coco-nutty cookies! Since then, I use Omega Nutrition with fantastic results.
Be sure to tell your eaters about the coconut - many folks with nut allergies also have sensitivities to coconut, although it is not one of the "top 8" allergens.
Also, speaking of coconut oil - on the controversial topic of melting - I thought one of the advantages to this oil is that it is a solid, making it a very good butter substitute. Wouldn't melting it ruin that effect? I haven't ever melted it, and have still had good results, although chipping it out of the can is not very fun! P.S. Although I may be impatient when it comes to coconut oil, I am a diligent cookbook reader. Despite this, I cannot find the reference to melting coconut oil anywhere!
Finally, can you recommend some gluten-free and vegan sprinkles and/or decorations? My cupcakes have taste and style, now they need pizazz! (I'm thinking edible flowers ...)

The book is Great! Each recipe works very well here in Roma, even if we couldn't get the "right" ingredients in Italy. Sometimes we did some substitution, i.e. in Italy we don't have bob's red mill...etc. We went to BabyCakes NYC last spring many times and we can get the same delicious cakes at home. Thank a lot Erin!

Hey,
I came back now that I've made a number of recipe's and have to say- I love your cookbook! Thank you so much. It really helps being Vegan and Celiac (among other things), to have someone who took the arduous amounts of time to perfect recipe's that people like me can eat and enjoy (very yummy!) and my carnivorous family devoured and loved, too!

I did run out of Vanilla before I go to the Blueberry Crumb Cake, so I used Almond Extract- it was still really good.

Mary, the melting of the coconut oil is in the first part of the cookbook where the ingredients to buy are all listed. It says to make sue to melt it where it lists the coconut oil.

Thanks Erin and Co. at Babycakes!

I really love your bakery...I first visited in 2007 and LOVED it! They were the first fresh gluten free baked goods and bakery I had seen. Since then I have started baking up a gluten free storm.

I finally got brave and tried the frosting recipe last night. I had read posts about the frosting not setting up and I was worried...and sure enough, my frosting didn't set up overnight. I agree that having all the FAQ's about the recipes in one place would be so helpful rather than sifting through all the comments to find out why my frosting didn't set up after carefully measuring everything and buying the brands you mentioned.

Thanks!

I am allergic to coconut. Is there an alternative for coconut oil for the frosting recipes? Can I use canola oil? Can I substitute canola oil in the bread and cake recipes for the coconut oil?

I tried to make the cupcakes using the coconut oil (despite my allergy - I was stubborn on making these work), but they turned out very gooey even though I had melted the oil. Any suggestions?

Hello again. I added more coconut oil to the frosting as suggested on another posting in your blog. It turned out okay, tasty, but not as firm as I hoped.

On another note...I made the pumpkin bread. I am a very good baker and I know my way around dry/liquid measure etc. I watched the video you made. I bought the brands you suggested. I measured carefully. I know my way around agave and gluten free baking. I only filled my pan halfway. I have an oven thermometer. I baked the bread 15 minutes longer than you suggested. The bread never cooked all the way through.

Suggestions help and advice from anyone who baked this bread at home and was successful? I really want to cry...the ingredients are so expensive and it broke my heart to throw the loaves (neither one cooked through) in the compost last night. :( The flavor was good though!

At first, I was very excited to try the recipes in your cookbook. I bought all the ingredients from Wholefoods for the banana bread recipe. I followed the very inadequate which I realized later) directions for that recipe. As I predicted, the bread did not turn out good...it was soggy! I wondered why...so I looked up other vegan banana bread recipes in the internet and what stood out as the difference is the amount of bananas. Your cookbook recipe asks for 6 medium bananas and other recipes asks for 2 cups the most! This video in your website confirmed this. As I watched that video, I was SHOCKED to see the TRUE??? ingredients. They are not exactly the same ingredients that you have in the cookbook!!! The video says 1.5 cups bananas! How can 6 bananas (from cookbook) equals 1.5 cups???? Another thing, the cookbook says 1/2 cup coconut oil and the video shows 1 cup. And for the vanilla, cookbook says 1 teaspoon but the video says 1 tablespoon. I would definitely not bother trying out any of your cookbook recipes as they are expected to FAIL! The good thing is I just borrowed the cookbook! It such a waste of time!

SO what are you really trying to achieve with your cookbook? To deceive the people who like to get a taste of your famous products by trying to do them on their own, huh?! I can't believe a person like you who have built a successful business can go out of your way to earn more money by putting together a deceptive cookbook! Are you not satisfied with the success of your stores that you were compelled to make more money by writing this deceptive cookbook? I'm glad I never became a fan of your products!!!

I can't stand people who LIE!!!!

I gave a copy of your book to a friend whose son has multiple food allergies. She made the banana bread, which she said was awesome....but needed to bake an hour (which was almost twice what the book said). Is it possible the times are off in the book? It would be great to start a forum where your fans who are using the book can swap tips and tricks! Thanks!

I am an avid baker. At one point I did it for a living, so I know how to measure correctly and everything. But I cannot figure out what is going wrong when I try to make the gingerbread.

I am currently having the same problems as Toni. I had no problems with the icing; that turned out great. But I have baked the gingerbread twice and I still can't get the inside to bake. I read the cookbook, read the directions over and over, and I even watched the video above. I actually baked it for 2 hours and still inside sticky-gooey. I am using all of the correct ingredients. I still have no idea what is going on.

If someone could give me some advice, that would be awesome. Thanks

First let me say, I love the cookbook. I've made other items from the book to great success and have given the book to other GF friends as presents. But after my banana bread kitchen disaster (DISASTER!) last night I thought I'd check here to see what I could have possibly done wrong. Apparently, it was the omission of the detail in the recipe to use a second loaf pan or muffin tins. I too ended up with an overflowing pan, a huge mess on the oven floor and a kitchen filled with smoke (not to mention the hallway and nervous neighbors!) And 6 bananas? I thought that was an awful lot of banana! Are there any other errors in the book that you know of? If so, perhaps you might make a errata tab in the cookbook section on this website (like they do for published knitting patterns) where readers can check before trying a new recipe.
Now, I am going to see if I can salvage any of that bread!

Hi there! I was diagnosed with crohns disease about 2 years ago. I eventually went to see a naturopath and found out I have many food sensitivites....dairy/wheat/eggs/sugar etc. I used to LOVE baked goods and baked all the time and was literally devastated that I couldn't eat any of this anymore. I was SO SO excited when I heard about your cookbook, I just bought it and am excited to try out all the recipes, but a little worried after eading some of the reviews!....hopefully everything turns out! So my question is, what is the trick to the frosting? I want to know before I try it because every review about it has been negative and i don't want to have to waste anything! I live in Vancouver, Canada and am going to travel to NYC or L.A. JUST to go to your bakery....so exicted!! Thank you :)

Hi Babycakes folk! Just looking for a little help. My first try with the cupcakes was not quite the success I was hoping for. The flavor is great and they look good BUT they are incredibly dense and I dare say a bit earthy. I loved them but I wanted to feed them to my non vgean friends also. Any suggestions. Do you think mixing them longer would help? I read many of the above comments and watched the video but am still stumped! Thanks for any help.

BAIT and SWITCH!
I made your frosting - and you have executed a bait and switch on us. The frosting is passable but the ingredients are COMPLETELY different from the ones in the frosting you gush about in your book. You have an entire page in your book patting yourself on the back about your "fabled frosting shots" and encouraging your readers to do the same thing - but you forget to include that we will NOT get the same results because YOUR RECIPE IS NOT THE BABYCAKE BAKERY RECIPE YOU USE. I am mad that I spent over 60 dollars to make your recipes and I ended up with dried out red velvet cupcakes and lousy oily tasting frosting.
Come on, be honest - you are trying to pull a fast one and not really give out your bakery recipes.

BTW your condescending attitude about not following directions is not appreciated - alot of us have been baking longer than you have been alive. It is not us, it is you.

Where in the world do you find a 7"x4"x3" loaf pan?? I can't find one anywhere. What size is the pan in the video?

just checking to see if this works:)

YUMMY! I had success with my chocy cupcakes yesterday which I made with my dad who is diabetic.
Wow they are lovely and fudgy with vanilla frosting which complemented the chocolate really well.
I visited NYC last september and went to your store and mine tasted just as good.
As I am from the UK it has taken a long time to gather the ingredients, and really glad they were a success.
I also don't think it matters how many years you have been baking for in your life, every recipe is different, every oven is different, you just have to have patience sometimes.
There is a famous bakery in London, and they have a cookbook and I have made 2 of their recipes and 1 failed, you just have to get in touch and find out the problem.
Just to let anyone know who doesn't live in USA I found a website called iherb.com who stock Bob's Red Mill flours and deliver worldwide at a great price.
Those choc chip sandwich cookies are calling me now :)
Thank you Erin for letting my dad eat cake again!!!

Hi Erin & Babycakes,

I live in NYC & have sampled your GF, agave-sweeetened products at the bakery. I am also a baker and was excited to get your cookbook. I tried making the agave-sweetened brownie gems from the cookbook since I have sampled them at the bakery and could compare my results. I had to bake mine 5 minutes longer than your recommended baking time & they still turned out really unpleasantly gummy (not fudgy) in texture and they had a salty aftertaste. Subsequently, I have viewed your video & combed through the book for clues to my lack of comparable success. I now see that I should have used my metal measuring cups for the coconut oil rather than a glass cup for "liquid" measurements. Do you melt a batch of coconut oil and then pour the needed amount into the metal measuring cup to get your measurement? Or do you fill the metal cup with the "solid" coconut oil and then melt it? I could not find this detailed in your book and the video did not explicitly address it either.

Additionally, I have read in your brochure and on your website that the bakery is soy-free, which is important to me because I am sensitive to soy. So I was really concerned to read that the frosting/sauce recipes in your cookbook use soy milk & soy milk powder. Do the frostings & sauces at the bakery include these soy products? What would you substitute for the soy milk powder in the cookbook recipe to make it soy-free.

I would really like to continue exploring your cookbook recipes but feel like I need answers to these questions before I can continue with any hope for success.

Hi Erin & Babycakes,

I live in NYC & have sampled your GF, agave-sweeetened products at the bakery. I am also a baker and was excited to get your cookbook. I tried making the agave-sweetened brownie gems from the cookbook since I have sampled them at the bakery and could compare my results. I had to bake mine 5 minutes longer than your recommended baking time & they still turned out really unpleasantly gummy (not fudgy) in texture and they had a salty aftertaste. Subsequently, I have viewed your video & combed through the book for clues to my lack of comparable success. I now see that I should have used my metal measuring cups for the coconut oil rather than a glass cup for "liquid" measurements. Do you melt a batch of coconut oil and then pour the needed amount into the metal measuring cup to get your measurement? Or do you fill the metal cup with the "solid" coconut oil and then melt it? I could not find this detailed in your book and the video did not explicitly address it either.

Additionally, I have read in your brochure and on your website that the bakery is soy-free, which is important to me because I am sensitive to soy. So I was really concerned to read that the frosting/sauce recipes in your cookbook use soy milk & soy milk powder. Do the frostings & sauces at the bakery include these soy products? What would you substitute for the soy milk powder in the cookbook recipe to make it soy-free.

I would really like to continue exploring your cookbook recipes but feel like I need answers to these questions before I can continue with any hope for success.

I'm honestly a huge fan of Erin - I have been in the bakery since the start and have to say she's a great gal, very funny and full of life. As a professional baker and cookbook author I feel for her right now (we’ve all been there at one time or another). This is her first cookbook and the recipes don't work well (boo hoo hoo, I cried too!!). There is a lot of detail that needed to be included and it simply wasn't ... that being said, why don't we all get together and tar and feather her! Let's really flex and show how terrible we think she is and completely shame her ... I mean this is after all, a capitol offence. Nonsense! Breathe people. She most likely did not give out her 'bakery' recipes and perhaps should have disclosed this information. She probably thinks this could affect her bottom line and sales would drop because people would no longer need her bakery and perhaps just bake her goodies on their own ... this is nonsense too. Erin, people will still come. This is the 21st century and people just don't want to invest the time energy and money into baking - we are a nation of sheer convenience. Any bakery or food establishment that has given out a recipe has never complained of a sudden drop in business - they will come my dear. And trust me, if someone wants to take all your recipes and start their own bakery … just let em try, they have NO idea the work involved or the capitol investment or the hours. Just look at Magnolia Bakery … cookbook works perfectly and we still see the line out the door. You are a real winner and a wildly creative baker and you will always be and who can take that from you?! And, I for one will always wish my frosting would taste just like Babycakes, I will always wish it would set up nicely, just like yours… sadly it won’t...big sigh. I don’t think you necessarily did anything intentionally; it’s your first cookbook – grace my dear, you need grace you got it here. I'm a fan who will always enjoy your scrumptious goodies. Go Erin!

XO

I loved the video! totally cracked me up! I tried the banana bread and loved it! The only problem was, I used a much larger pan & all the batter -knowing full well it went against recipe instructions...and then didn't bake it long enough! MY FAULT :) But it was delicious and I can't wait to bake it again the right way so it's all cooked! thank you thank you for this cookbook, my life is saved from sweet-less nightmares!

Erin, you're A W E S O M E.

I'm working on my first book (not a cookbook), and I'm not sure how I'd react to so much venomous criticism of my work. Actually, I think I'd vomit, yank the cord out from the modem, turn my phone off, and then hide in my apartment for a few weeks.

I've been coming in to the bakery since you opened: I'd just been diagnosed as allergic to gluten, and your bakery felt like a gift from the gods. I used to be a semi-pro baker, but I stopped baking on being diagnosed, in part because learning how to bake differently seemed too overwhelming, and in part because I had BabyCakes.

Now I'm baking--a lot--but I'm a late comer to your book. (I started with Elana Amsterdam's almond-flour cookbook, from which I get stellar results. Then I moved on to the Flying Apron book, which also works well for me.) A close friend, who often bakes for me, just lent me the first edition of the BabyCakes book.

I was initially dismayed by all the spelt, even though I feel strongly that it's your bakery, your book, and it should be whatever you, Erin, want it to be. For the love of god, you've kept me in delicious treats for how many years now?

So far I've baked the brownie bites and the double-choco cookies, both with excellent results (and I froze about a dozen of the cookies--six minutes in a 300 degree oven, and I have an awesome dessert without baking a whole batch!). Today or tomorrow I'm going for the banana bread.

But the main reason I'm writing here is just to say how much I respect and admire your response to criticism of the book. The friendliness, the desire to help, that rad banana-bread video, the FAQ, and the second edition with the "mostly" in front of "gluten free" on the cover. Hell yes. Your professionalism is as fabulous as your chocolate-chip cookies, and that's saying an awful lot.

THANK YOU for everything. I'm a BabyCakes fan for life. xoxox

p.s. I am of course buying my own copy of the book.

The book is a fun read and it reminds me that GF baking is a constant work in progress. First cupcake attempt was a bust; the second was successful as I believe they taste as they're supposed to. I just realized that I like my other recipe better. I look forward to trying the other recipes and I appreciate the thought that Babycakes has put into the book. If my tastes end up not agreeing with their recipes, it just shows that we celiacs are getting enough options that we, too, can finally have the experiences of gluten eaters, CHOICE! Happy Baking.

Erin, I need urgent help. My daughter's birthday is on saturday and I am trying to make the fat pants cake, but my frosting is not hardening. I made it last night, following the instructions to a T, but this morning after 12 hours in the fridge my frosting still looks like sauce. I tried adding more coconut oil (melted) but still the frosting wouldn't harden. I don't know what else to do, please help! By the way the banana bread is absolutely amazing!!!!! never eating another banana bread ever!

Erin, I need urgent help. My daughter's birthday is on saturday and I am trying to make the fat pants cake, but my frosting is not hardening. I made it last night, following the instructions to a T, but this morning after 12 hours in the fridge my frosting still looks like sauce. I tried adding more coconut oil (melted) but still the frosting wouldn't harden. I don't know what else to do, please help! By the way the banana bread is absolutely amazing!!!!! never eating another banana bread ever!

Erin, I need urgent help. My daughter's birthday is on saturday and I am trying to make the fat pants cake, but my frosting is not hardening. I made it last night, following the instructions to a T, but this morning after 12 hours in the fridge my frosting still looks like sauce. I tried adding more coconut oil (melted) but still the frosting wouldn't harden. I don't know what else to do, please help! By the way the banana bread is absolutely amazing!!!!! never eating another banana bread ever!

Hello Babycakes! - I love your bakery and your cookbook! Can you post a summary of errors in the first edition. My frosting recipes state to use 1 1/2 cups unsweetened soy milk, and the banana bread states to use 1/2 cup coconut oil and 1 tsp. vanilla. Should these be 3/4 cup soy milk, 1 cup cocounut oil, and 1 T. vanilla? Are there any other changes. Thank you so much.

Hello Babycakes! - I love your bakery and your cookbook! Can you post a summary of errors in the first edition. My frosting recipes state to use 1 1/2 cups unsweetened soy milk, and the banana bread states to use 1/2 cup coconut oil and 1 tsp. vanilla. Should these be 3/4 cup soy milk, 1 cup cocounut oil, and 1 T. vanilla? Are there any other changes. Thank you so much.

Hello Babycakes! - I love your bakery and your cookbook! Can you post a summary of changes to the first edition? My frosting recipes state to use 1 1/2 cups unsweetened soy milk, and the banana bread states to use 1/2 cup coconut oil and 1 tsp. vanilla. Should these be 3/4 cup soy milk, 1 cup cocounut oil, and 1 T. vanilla? Are there any other changes. Thank you so much.

Love your book and that video clip on the banana bread was the cutest. Anyway I made your pumpkin muffins and they were the most moist thing I have ever baked - however, they werent sweet enough and I felt like there was some missing "pumpkin" flavor - today I made chocolate chip cookies - the batter was more cake like and I had to add an xtra cup of flour - however - I substituted can juice for agave nectar - forgetting only to use 3/4 of a cup - I did 1 cup--theni made banana bread - perfect recipe but i feel that the bread isnt sweet enough - again i altered agave instead of evaporated cane juice and ddnt have rice milk but used almond - can any of these substitutions take away sweetness?? also my banana bread was more overcooked on the outside/top where i ddnt have this problem with the pumpkin bread --lastly the pumpkin bread i used glass and metal mesauring cups but still got great results thx babycakes--no stomach bloating for me

A question regarding the popcorn ball recipe from your "Covers the Classics" cookbook.... It instructs to allow the final syrup to cool for ONE MINUTE. Is this right? I did as instructed, and the still very warm syrup, when poured over my popcorn, diminished the popcorn to a third of it's size... turned it into a soupy mush which never held together even after refrigeration... a sorry waste of time and resources.

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