Some of the sweetest successes are born out of struggle…in parenthood, in business…and in life! Laurel Gallucci knows this all too well. After all, her very first baby—beloved Los Angeles bakery Sweet Laurel—was born out of her experience with an aggressive autoimmune disease. 

When Laurel’s doctor recommended eliminating grains, dairy, and refined sugars to help ease inflammation, Laurel soon realized she would need to whip up all her own food—including the treats she loved—using unprocessed ingredients like almond flour and coconut oil. And when her now-co-founder Claire Thomas got a taste of one of these wholesome creations, it was clear that Laurel’s baked goods needed to be enjoyed widely.

Since Sweet Laurel first began cooking up healthful, delicious baked goods in 2015, the westside mainstay has opened a beautiful cake shop in LA’s Pacific Palisades, rolled out a nationwide line of baking mixes, and published two cookbooks. Oh, and Laurel herself welcomed sons Nico and Cal! (Whew!) 

Now there’s another exciting addition to the Sweet Laurel and Happiest Baby blended fam: our Blooberry Bar for 4th Trimester Support. In celebration of our new partnership, Happiest Baby chatted with Laurel about Sweet Laurel’s birth, balancing a bakery and two boys, the 4th trimester support she relied on, and more! 

Can you tell our readers a little bit about Sweet Laurel’s birth story?

Claire Thomas and I founded Sweet Laurel back in 2015. At the time I with battling Hashimoto’s Disease, and as a final straw, had begun addressing my autoimmune issues via diet. My doctor put me on a grain-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free diet, and I found my inflammation began to subside. Quickly, I discovered I would need to make all my own food – and desserts! I started to create recipes that were centered around five core ingredients: almond flour, coconut oil, Himalayan pink salt, 100% maple syrup, and organic eggs. The baked goods I was making for friends and family were receiving rave reviews, and one day I brought a Chocolate Caramel Cake to my dear friend Claire Thomas’ house. After taking one bite, Claire turned to me and said, “What are we doing with this!?” That is when Sweet Laurel was born. And our Chocolate Caramel Cake is our bestseller to this day!

Sweet Laurel has become such a beloved institution in Los Angeles—what is it about your approach that you think speaks to people so deeply?

I think our nourishing approach to decadent food is what people are drawn to. Whether gluten-free or not, all can enjoy Sweet Laurel, without compromise on flavor. And everything always looks gorgeous from the packaging to the product. 

I know Sweet Laurel is just one of your babies—how has motherhood informed your approach to work and life?

Motherhood has been a gift and has given me a very good glimpse into balance and how to approach that in my life. Before my babies were born, I would work around the clock all day, every day. As the motherhood chapter began, I quickly learned that would not work. I try to approach my days with structure, whether a weekday or weekend, and it makes all the difference! Balance can be both believable and achievable that way.

Laurel Gallucci's sons holding Sweet Laurel baking mixes

Food and baking are a core part of your life—has it become part of your sons’ lives too?

Nico and Cal bake or cook with me every day, whether it’s pancakes in the morning or prepping dinner, they are there with me. I can’t really be in our kitchen without them pulling out bowls and cup measures and asking to bake together.

Do they have favorite Sweet Laurel treats?

Nico and Cal love our Pancake Mix! We make it together all the time. It’s high in protein and a good source of fiber so a great way to start the day. They also love our Chocolate Chip Cookies!

What excited you about collaborating with Happiest Baby on a product?

Happiest Baby is my absolute favorite! My boys adored their SNOOs as babies, and then their SNOObears and now their SNOObie! It was so sweet to see the look on their faces when the SNOO sound came on their SNOObie. We love what Dr. Karp and the team are doing at Happiest Baby and love supporting them however we can! This collab is a dream come true!

What was most important to you when developing the recipe for our new Blooberry Bar collaboration?

I’m a big fan of good fats, especially while breastfeeding and recovering from birth. The key nutrients in the ingredients we use in this cake are what make it special. Plant power shines here with pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, and sunflower seeds. The cool thing with these cookies is that even though they are designed for nursing mamas, anyone can enjoy them and benefit from the nutrients here. You’ll find me munching on these bars year-round, breastfeeding or not!

When you were in the throes of new motherhood what did you turn to nourish, support, and sustain you?

I’m a big fan of eating grain-free, refined-sugar-free, and dairy-free, and have been since starting Sweet Laurel. Eating complete meals—with adequate clean protein and healthy fats, and carbs from sources like sweet potatoes and winter squash—are key. I actually took a bunch of baked sweet potatoes with me to the hospital when I had my babies! I knew after labor I’d be starving and need something quick and healthy! 

What advice would you give to new parents who are just starting out in their journey?

Make decisions based on what is good for you and your family – not what other perceive to be best for you. We are all unique, and so are our families.

Have questions about a Happiest Baby product? Our consultants would be happy to help! Submit your questions here.

Disclaimer: The information on our site is NOT medical advice for any specific person or condition. It is only meant as general information. If you have any medical questions and concerns about your child or yourself, please contact your health provider.