Gluten-Free in Encinitas: 2Good2B

 

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Mom gave these to me when we picked her up from work to take her out to dinner. I with the Raspberry Coconut ones were available for delivery.

 

One of the places I had my eye on before we even left on the road trip was 2Good2B in Encinitas. My friend and fellow blogger/author T.H. Hernandez told me about them. If you’ve been following me from the beginning (or near it), Theresa and I first met as gluten-free bloggers when she was doing her Gluten-Free Comfort Food blog. We fell out of touch when she stepped away from her blog and when I least expected it, she found me on Twitter as I was working on Family Ties and she was working on The Union. So when she recommended them I knew I had to get there come hell or high water.

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On my birthday, we spent the morning at Moonlight Beach before heading over to 2Good2Be to meet a high school classmate for lunch. She was running late so we ate dessert first. When in doubt – or if it’s your birthday – always eat dessert first.

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If we lived in Encinitas I would be at 2Good2B daily for the Raspberry Coconut cupcakes. They remind me of Raspberry Zingers and I loved those things. The desserts here are really out of this world, some of the best I’ve had from 100% gluten-free bakeries/restaurants.

Once my friend arrived, we ordered lunch. Somehow when the orders went back to the kitchen, my sandwich got left off and it took a while longer for them to prepare it.

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While I loved that they use Terra Chips (one of the few ways for me to enjoy taro chips on the Mainland) and the chicken salad was delicious, the bread left me wanting. It was too dense for a baguette. They should be light and airy inside with a crisp crust. The full bread loaves they had out for sale were all heavy and based on that, my guess was they were all as dense as the baguette.

Don’t let my opinion on the bread deter you, though. There are many healthy lunch options and everything they had behind the glass looked yummy. I would go again to try something different.

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What I did pick up for later were some muffins. Since the cupcakes were light and fluffy, I suspected the muffins would be too and I was right. The Lemon Poppyseed and Blueberry were just as delicious as the cupcakes.

If I could I would order all the muffins and cupcakes to be shipped to me daily. Okay, maybe not daily. Just weekly.

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Gluten-Free in Encinitas: Healthy Creations

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Hotel room keys can make jokes.

We headed south again after leaving Los Angeles. Destination: Encinitas. When we got in, we had enough time to check-in to the hotel before picking up Mom (my best friend’s mom) from work and take her for dinner.

We went to Healthy Creations, a 100% gluten-free bakery and restaurant that serves breakfast and lunch. They close at 6 pm, so we had an early dinner. It wasn’t packed while we were there, so it made conversation easy.

Since the place is 100% gluten-free, it meant everything was safe and everything on the menu looked good so it was hard to choose. Eventually, I settled on a California Wrap (it was a teff wrap).healthy-creations-4

Mom ordered a BLAT on ciabatta and wanted her sandwich to be part of my food porn. I was more than happy to oblige.

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Don’t they look good? They use fresh ingredients and who in the world doesn’t love a good California avocado? The only thing better is a Hawai`i avocado. After having both types, Chaz says I’ve ruined him for avocados. He didn’t know he was missing out before.

I also got a chocolate “malted” with almond milk. There is no malt in the “malted” and even though I haven’t had many in my life, it did taste just like I remember them to be.

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Chaz went back for some of the baked goods and a few drinks (soda for him and local cold brew coffee for me)  before we left. The pastries we tried later were pretty good, but the cupcakes weren’t my thing. Chaz really liked them so that should tell you something since he’s the gluten eater. As you can see in the next picture, they do have gf specialty products for sale as well.

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We took Mom home and kept her up past her bedtime, chatting. (I’m such a bad influence)

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The sun was setting over the Pacific on the way to Mom’s. Too stunning to not share.

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Drank the cold brew coffee another day. It was good stuff and the restaurant had repurposed some of the old bottles, which is what brought my attention to it. Cold brewing coffee is a great way to keep the acidic content down if it bothers you. It’s also the best way to make coffee if you’re going to use it for iced coffee drinks.

Gluten-Free In Seattle: Hugo’s

While in Seattle, I had to make sure I took Chaz to some of the touristy places. The second day we hit Pike Place Market…

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Pike Place Fish Co., famous for their fish tossing while filling orders. All the tourists taking pictures were on the other side. Everyone where I was standing was ordering fish.

We wandered around the entire market, checking everything out. I found a place not far from Pike Place Fish Co. with boba tea and ordered one to drink while we walked. We each bought a new shirt from a vendor and I admired the pretty flowers on display. There were also Big Ass Grapes – I shared that picture on Instagram and Facebook. It was too funny not to.

After lunch, we went to the Seattle Space Needle..

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Anyone from the PNW and remember the old Rainier Beer commercials? Even while taking this picture, I was thinking: Raaaaaaaaaiiiiineeeeeeiiiirrrrrrr Beeeeeeerrrrrr

Then on to Chihuly Glass & Garden…

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One room was just a glass ceiling with all of these pretty glassworks encased in it.

Amazing artistry. Some simple and some elaborate. It was difficult picking just one picture to share with you.

Last, the EMP Museum…

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Connor MacLeod’s katana from Highlander in the Fantasy exhibit.

There was so much to see in the museum and we managed to get to all the exhibits but three. The exhibit for Nirvana was a must for us music nerds. Dave Grohl’s drum set? HELLOOOO! Then the Gibson guitars, including Eddie Van Halen’s. Okay, there were a lot of celebrity guitars there, but his was the only one I took a picture of and remember. At this point I needed a break and sat down while Chaz walked around. We moved on to the Star Wars costume exhibit: AMAZEBALLS! I didn’t think it could get better than that until we went into the Fantasy exhibit. Costumes AND props from so many fantasy movies: Harry Potter, The Princess Bride, The Wizard of Oz, Lord of the Rings… They even had the katana from the first movie I fell in love with as an adult, Highlander.

There was so much more to see there, but they close at five and we cut it close. Part of me was sad that we weren’t going to be in town when the Star Wars costume changed to Hello Kitty. I lived.

I could not pass up the opportunity to finally meet two long time internet friends, who happen to be married to each other. The agreement I made with Twin was that she and Mr. Music would treat us to dinner at a gluten-free restaurant she loves, Hugo’s. After our day of sight-seeing, we headed over to my friends’ home to talk story a bit before heading to the restaurant.

We were greeted with homemade seeded crackers already waiting for us. While perusing for the menu, I may have squealed when I saw New Grist and Greens beers listed in their beer selection. Okay, I danced in my seat too. It was exciting to finally see a good gluten-free beer listed; not one made by a big beer company that is as watery as its gluten-full counterpart, or one masquerading with the label “crafted to remove gluten.”

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Greens isn’t easy to find where I live and it’s rare when I see it on a menu.

I ordered a Greens Dubbel Dark (my favorite), and it stood to reason I should have a burger go with it. They mix grass-fed ground lamb with grass-fed ground beef for a juicy burger with richer flavor. Plus, they make their own gluten-free breads in-house. I was not disappointed.

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Hugo’s Burger, sweet potato fries, and Greens Dubbel Dark.

For dessert, Twin and I each had the Raw Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake. A great way to end the meal and form a food memory with friends I’ve known for years online and finally met in person. Thanks again for dinner, Twin & Mr. Music!

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Raw goodness!

Hugo’s is out of the way, but well worth the drive for a menu full of nothing but gluten-free options.