Tony smiled from ear-to-ear after sampling his first bite of chocolate cake in what seemed like years. While perusing Expo West, he had stumbled across the relatively new line of Among Friends gluten-free baking mixes.
Among Friends makes wholesome, wheat-based mixes (also dairy-free, but we’ve yet to trial), but they’ve been aggressively pushing into the gluten-free sector. They converted their crisp topping and one cookie recipe to be gluten-free, and added some new cookies and the aforementioned chocolate cake mix.
Some things to love about Among Friends Gluten-Free Baking Mixes:
- Though they do make whole wheat products, the company has gone to the trouble of getting gluten-free certifications and even non-GMO verification.
- They use only whole grains! This primarily means certified gluten-free oats.
- Each mix is inspired by and named for a family member or friend of the founders.
- They are made without xanthan gum, guar gum or any other funny binders.(I love this one!)
As for the finished products, we sampled each Among Friends gluten-free mix…
Among Friends Gluten-Free Phil ’em Up Cookie Mix
These hearty, sweet delights were devoured in less than two days! No adjustments were needed to make these perfectly tender cookies – we followed the direction (uses 1 egg), but substituted dairy-free, non-hydrogenated margarine for the butter (as recommended on the package). We loved the base of certified gluten-free oats and oat flour, spiked with generous amounts of full-size chocolate chips, cranberries, and coconut.
Among Friends Gluten-Free CJs Double Chocolate Cookie Mix
The cocoa-coffee base of this Among Friends gluten-free cookie mix was nicely complimented with handfuls of dairy-free chocolate chips. The flavor was a like, but not a love for me, but I’m not a coffee drinker. Tony likes his java and enjoyed the depth in these chocoholic delights. The consistency was a touch drier than the other Among Friends gluten-free cookies mixes, but still quite tender.
Among Friends Gluten-Free Liv it Up Cake Mix
Alas, though we followed the directions to the letter, using eggs, the cake (we made as cupcakes) collapsed, creating dense, deep, and rather unappealing craters. We only live at an elevation 4000 feet, so not all recipes need adjusting, but this mix definitely needs some high altitude directions. We know it’s good, from the show, but unfortunately can’t easily enjoy this chocolate cake in our home.
Among Friends Gluten-Free Trish the Dish Crisp Mix
This is a good, standard crisp topping with a little added interest from the cinnamon, nutmeg, and orange zest. I really liked that they use a hearty base of oats, flaxseed and almond meal, but since crisp topping is so easy to make, I probably wouldn’t splurge on this mix in the future.
Among Friends Gluten-Free Shane’s Sweet-n-Spicy Cookie Mix
Again, no problems with the preparation (though I did have to bake them a couple minutes longer than directed to avoid raw cookies) and the results were the perfect combination of soft and chewy. I typically adore the combination of molasses and ginger, and tend to use a heavy hand when baking with warm spices. That said, I think there may have been a spice mishap in this batch. The sweet backdrop was completely overwhelmed by a very sharp, savory, almost soapy taste – perhaps from the star anise and anise seed or an overly generous dash of cloves? They weren’t on the edible spectrum, which was too bad as they did have the most amazing texture!
Certifications: Among Friends Gluten-Free Baking Mixes are Certified Gluten-Free and Non-GMO Verified.
Dietary Notes: By ingredients, Among Friends Gluten-Free Baking Mixes are dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, peanut-free, vegan / plant-based, and vegetarian, though the directions do call for eggs (they have vegan recipes for the mixes on their website). Nonetheless, verify on the label and check with the company on their manufacturing processes for all varieties if potential allergen cross-contamination is an issue for you. Processes, ingredients, and labeling are subject to change at any time for any company / product.
For More Product Information: Visit the Among Friends website at www.amongfriendsbakingmixes.com.