JP's Pastry creates tasty baked goods for people with gluten allergies
Posted October 25
Benson, N.C. — I talked with "JP," also known as Joe Parker, the chief baking officer for JP's Pastry.
For those of you who don't know, JP's Pastry is a gluten-free certified bakery based out of Benson.
In fact, JP’s Pastry is the only gluten-free bakery certified by the GIG (Gluten Intolerance Group of America) in the Carolinas. In the 5,000 square feet building, the JP's Pastry team designs and makes baked goods from scratch.
"We bake each product over and over and over until we know our customers will love it," JP told me. "Our goal is to give everyone something special to savor. I want everyone to feel included by being able to have a slice of wedding cake, birthday cake, a celebration cake or even a daily pastry, even if they have a gluten allergy."
I asked JP why he decided to open a gluten-free bakery. "I have a wheat allergy," he said. "I have memories of birthdays without cakes or not being able to eat pizza at parties. Then, I started baking for friends and loved ones, and it developed into a business through demand."
JP's Pastry sells any baked good you could imagine, from breakfast pastries like vegan carrot raisin pecan muffins to chocolate and pumpkin pound cake loaves, bars of all kinds, icing-filled cookies, bagels and wedding cakes for couples with wheat allergies.
JP told me that it is hard for him to pick his favorite JP's Pastry creation. "Our team loves making celebration cakes," he said. "But what we really love is providing the everyday items that have been prohibitive to people with Celiacs or those with gluten intolerances."
"Recently, my favorite product is our bagels," he added. "Before those, I hadn't had a good gluten-free bagel in so long. It really is something special to savor!"
JP doesn't stop at gluten-free products, either. Vegan options, which address other allergies, like dairy, are made from scratch at the bakery, too. "We want everyone to know that they can have gluten-free cakes for special occasions such as weddings, anniversaries and baby showers," said JP. "We cater and provide a variety of platters for meetings and other special events."
Customers can order products online through the JP's Pastry website or find them at various coffee shops, markets and restaurants like ORO, Joe Van Gogh, Happy + Hale and more.
JP's Pastry ships baked goods to customers nationwide, but local customers can pick-up their orders from several designated locations in and around Raleigh. All of the products made at JP's Pastry are packaged and sealed in-house to eliminate any cross contamination.
You can find a list of all businesses that stock and supply JP's goods online.
You can even visit the production center in Benson to pick up the pastries you ordered, have a coffee and dessert or request a wedding cake testing.
"We welcome everyone to come and visit us at the bakery," said JP. "I grew up with allergies, and I know what it feels like to be excluded when you cannot enjoy what others are eating."