No Grains Homemade Bakery
Little Rock’s Newest Way to Do Dessert
By Jalynn McColey
Photos by Dustin Nevill
When it comes to cookies and cake, it is a well-known fact that little can be said about the nutritional value that accompanies the delectable treats. Add some brownies and you’re left spending hours attempting to negate the processed grains and refined sugars consumed in each square. While it is possible to avoid all types of sweets in efforts to uphold a clean diet, it’s not easy- nor enjoyable- for the majority of us. That’s why when we heard about the concept of baked goods that were grain-free, refined sugar-free and delicious, we jumped at the opportunity to check it out.
Lucky for us, No Grains Homemade Bakery owners Marci Buhajla and Rebecca Tackett are also avid club Crossfitters, making it easy to track down the masterminds behind Little Rock’s sweetest new small business. (We call them masterminds only after sampling an array of muffins, cookies and brownies and finding – to our pleasure- taste was not compromised.)
It was after an intense-looking Crossfit workout that Marci and Rebecca shared with us a little about the business of the bakery.
What type of bakery is No Grains Homemade Bakery?
No Grains Homemade Bakery is a home-based, grain-free and refined sugar-free bakery. Almost all of our baked goods are compliant with the popular Paleo diet that many follow in the Crossfit community. We offer made to order custom cakes, muffins, cookies, brownies and several seasonal goods such as pecan pies and pumpkin bars. We have recently perfected the paleo compliant bread and tortilla! We pride ourselves on our commitment to customizing what people need based on their individual health and lifestyle choices. If you need something specifically gluten-free or dairy-free, just ask. We also use the least amount of ingredients as possible, with no processing involved.
Where did the concept of No Grains Homemade Bakery begin?
After meeting and becoming close friends through Razorback Crossfit at the LRAC (thanks, partner WODS), we began to bake together in our free time. Baking has always been something we both enjoyed as a pastime. In our time in the kitchen, we discovered our mutual pleasure of baking for other people, so we began to bring our special treats to the gym. It turns out, our fellow gym-goers really liked our goodies, specifically because they taste great but don’t cause the typical sweet crash.
How did that evolve into a business?
Everyone at the gym would tell us that we shouldn’t give away our baked goods for free. That’s when we started to realize we had an opportunity in front of us. Trust us- we did a lot of baking together before deciding we were ready to start a business.
It seems your involvement with Razorback CrossFit had a large impact on the development of No Grains Homemade Bakery?
Definitely. We both began participating in CrossFit at the club after our husbands became involved. The improvement we saw in their overall health was remarkable and we wanted to get in on it. Both of us began to see immediate improvement in our overall health but we both feel as if we didn’t reach our full potential until the CrossFit Nutrition Challenge in January of 2015. After such a noticeable difference in the way we looked and felt, we realized what a factor nutrition played in our fitness journey.
It must get complicated running a co-owned business. How do you distribute the responsibilities?
It’s actually quite easy. Rebecca is the shopper and she handles the business side of things. I (Marci) handle the social media, photography, and product marketing. Of course, we bake together!
Both of you are currently working elsewhere as well. Does this interfere with your current employment?
We knew if we wanted to do this and be the best, we would have to commit. We both work part-time and have cut back our hours as the business has picked up. We are grateful that we have flexible jobs that accommodate our busy baking schedules.
Now back to the food – what are some examples of items we can find on the menu?
All varieties of our cookies, muffins, dessert bars, cakes are mainstays on our menu; we may feature new menu items when we create something new or when the season changes. Right now, we are gearing up for Thanksgiving, so our pumpkin pie bars, pecan pie, carrot cake cupcakes with maple cream cheese drizzle are crowd pleasers. We also just introduced our new Cinnamon Coconut Cake Donut.
So we must know, how do you bake sweets without sugar?
Our baked goods are naturally sweetened with fruit, honey or maple syrup. There are no refined sugars!
It sounds like you’ve got it figured out! What are your goals for the future as far as expansion?
Right now we’re working toward commercial kitchen access. We’re also working toward building partnerships with local businesses to provide catering, lunch and desserts. We offer dessert and fruit trays and are moving toward lunch catering with our grain-free sandwich bread. Our biggest goal right now is to expand our lunch catering so that we can serve more people. And, of course, continue to expand on our current offerings such as cookies and cakes.
Now the question we’ve all been waiting for, how can we view the menu and place an order?
You can view our current menu and place an order on our website, located at https://squareup.com/market/nograins.
You can also contact us through Facebook or by phone.
That sounds fantastic! Anything else you’d like to let us know?
Be on the lookout for our special holiday menu!