After a very successful 27ish hours in St. Augustine I headed to Jacksonville for the night before a work meeting the next day. Usually before a trip I do a lot of research, but this was going to be a quick trip to Jacksonville (another 24 hours). I do however always at least check out Yelp to see what restaurants are nearby (especially gluten-free options). Zoomed in on my hotel in downtown nothing really stuck out to me on the gluten-free end (or really even restaurant wise in general). I did zoom out just a little bit though and found the #1 listing for gluten-free was a place called Sweet Theory Baking Company. It was listed as vegan, which if I am being honest kind of made me go meh… But I clicked on it anyways.
The info on Yelp mentioned allergen free options and “Gluten-Free options available daily.” The reviews were all raving and made it sound like the gluten-free options were much more prevalent. I think initially I thought it was cool, but it closed at 5 PM and I wanted to get as much time in St. Augustine as possible before checking in late to my hotel in Jacksonville. I instead made plans to stop at a place with gluten-free crepes along the way back from St. Augustine (I plan my meals in advance and very seriously when I find gluten-free options).
I can’t remember exactly what changed after that. I think I either came across a blog post about Sweet Theory’s gluten-free options or I checked out some of the pics on their Facebook group, but somewhere I saw a pic of something gluten-free and I was like “woah okay I need to check this out!” I decided to come back a little bit earlier from St. Augustine and hit up Sweet Theory Baking Company before it closed at 5 PM. Man am I really glad I did.
Sweet Theory Baking Company is in a neighborhood just outside of downtown and not far off the freeway. The neighborhood is quite quaint and I drove by some older homes and found it in a more small town, “Main Street” kind of place. It kind of reminded me a lot of city neighborhoods in the Northeast or Midwest. It just reminded me of how “young” Miami is relative to other cities and how different Northern Florida is from South Florida.
I want to say I got to Sweet Theory around 3 PM. I always worry about checking out a place with gluten-free options later in the day, because sometimes they run out of the good stuff. Luckily that was not the case. They had plenty! If my memory serves me correctly actually everything was gluten-free except their doughnuts. That was kind of unfortunate because they looked delicious, but there was still tons to chose from. There also was a sign that stated they make all their gluten-free stuff in a separate prep area with separate utensils.
There were a lot of cupcake options and I went for two- a Blondie cupcake and a So Fudging Good cupcake. A whoopie pie also caught my attention and then I saw something that looked like a muffin, but it didn’t look crumbly like a muffin. It kind of looked like a doughnut. It was a Doughmuff! After reading the name that seemed like a must. There were also some slices of pies, but I was trying to employ moderation after my day of sweets and booze in St. Augustine. I also read reviews about cookie ice cream sandwiches, but once I had picked out my four things I tried to be very strict about not stumbling across anything else I “needed to have.” A return visit is likely just to be able to try more options!
I was tempted to just eat some of it (all of it…) in my car as soon I got in. I acted like an adult though and drove to my hotel and checked in before trying anything. I started with the Doughmuff (obviously). This in itself makes a trip to Sweet Theory worth it! I really hope they have it on future visits (and for any of you that visit). It’s crispy on the outside like a dougnhut (with the taste and texture of cinnamon), but then once you get inside it starts to get crumbly like a muffin. They nailed this texture! They also got the taste really well, because it has a touch of sweetness like a doughnut, but it’s more breakfast-sweet like a muffin on the inside and overall. I loved the not-to-sweet-ness and it’s definitely something I’ve found myself craving since then. I was all about the texture (not gluten-free like at all!) and taste. I think this gives the Cronut a run for its money!
I also tried the So Fudging Good cupcake this first round. The cupcake itself was moist with good texture and I liked that the frosting wasn’t overly sugary (something I’ve tended to find with vegan frosting when they can’t use dairy). It made me realize that while I enjoy chocolate, I don’t love just straight chocolate-chocolate-chocolate. This doesn’t reflect at all on Sweet Theory, but when I tend to find gluten-free stuff I always go for chocolate stuff and it’s never actually my favorite. I did like there was some vanilla frosting on the So Fudging Good cupcake for contrast. But it made me think that in the future I am going to branch out and try other flavors.
Later on in the evening I had the Blonde cupcake and this is what I was talking about! I loved this cupcake. Same good texture as the So Fudging Good, but you had the vanilla cupcake with chocolate chips inside and then frosting on the top and caramel sauce with little chunks of the blondie cupcake (or maybe cookie) on top. The frosting was either vanilla or caramel (I don’t confuse the two, I just can’t remember as I’m writing this). I know there were two kind of Blondies I could choose from- caramel and something else. Of course I went with caramel, but I can’t remember if that was the frosting or just the sauce drizzled on top. Regardless these are the types of cupcakes I love (and generally I love things like cookies, but only like/appreciate cupcakes). The flavors were very complimentary, but still contrasting and more sophisticated. The Doughmuff was a very special treat, but the Blondie was satisfying and a great second favorite.
I later on also had the Whoopie Pie. Overall texture/feel it made me think of a Whoopie Pie. I think the fact that it was vegan made me feel it didn’t meet my expectations, but that’s probably because I didn’t have the right expectations. I think when the flavor of something depends on something dairy (in its original form) that’s when you notice the vegan difference. Cheesecake is a great example. You can experiment with different flavors when it’s just dairy missing from the inside of a cupcake or cookie (and even the frosting sometimes). But when it’s something that’s very dairy-y in taste like cheesecake or the inside of the Whoopie Pie it’s hard to get the expectation out of your head of the dairy flavor. That’s just me and my love of dairy, but the Whoopie Pie is still something Sweet Theory Baking Company should be proud of.
Sweet Theory Baking Company is an awesome place for Jacksonville to have (I’m quite jealous). Their gluten-free options are extensive and they have some very delicious ones. They also seem to get very creative with their baked goods and flavors (Doughmuff for example). I will never forget the Doughmuff that’s for sure. Vegans and dairy-frees will also love this place and all the options. And as some of the reviews on Yelp attest to, I think that regular gluten/dairy eaters can really enjoy their stuff. Make sure to stop and enjoy a Doughmuff (and more) at Sweet Theory Baking Company!
Sweet Theory Baking Company- 1243 King St, Jacksonville, FL 32204
https://www.facebook.com/SweetRevolutionBakingCo (Facebook page)