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Treat Yourself...Treat the Earth with Allison’s Cookies

By Audrey E. Nickel

A wise man once said “Better beer and franks with cheer and thanks than beans and brown bread with fear and dread.” While we may take issue with the beer and prefer that the franks be made from organic tofu, the point is well taken: A healthy diet is important (vital even), but an occasional indulgence is good for the soul.

Enter Allison Rivers, founder of Allison’s Cookies: The mail-order goodies business, based on Vashon Island, WA, that has taken the vegan community by storm. Allison specializes in indulgences: gourmet cookies; rich, fudgy brownies; decadent bakery bars – all made with organic ingredients and all 100% free of animal products.

If you’ve ever suffered your way through a dry, tasteless “health food” cookie, you may be skeptical: How can a cookie or brownie possibly taste good without butter and eggs and fluffy white processed flour? The answer: high-quality ingredients and years of hard work by a person with a passion for good baking. The result: gourmet treats that would turn Mrs. Fields green with envy and send Betty Crocker running to her glossary searching for “organic high-oleic sunfl ower oil.” These are not “health bars” (as Allison says, “A cookie is NOT a carrot-beet salad!”). They are, rather, the treats you serve to honored guests, or send to loved ones, or simply savor yourself late at night when the kids are in bed (perhaps with a scoop of organic vanilla “Soy Delicious™” or “Rice Dream™” to gild the lily a bit) to remind yourself that there IS such a thing as indulgence without compromise.

Allison began baking for herself, having fun converting conventional recipes to vegan treats. For someone whose first job was working a bakery counter, compromise in quality was no more acceptable than compromise in ethics.

When friends and co-workers tasted the results of her efforts and said, “You really ought to sell these,” she agreed, and started a delivery business in the Seattle area, supplying cakes, muffi ns and other goodies to individuals and to restaurants. Later, seeing a need in the greater vegan community, she decided to branch into mail order, focusing on cookies, brownies and bars as the items most suitable for mailing.

Allison says her brownies are her “favorite child,” as it took four years to get the recipe just right. As any seasoned vegan cook knows, cookies and cakes can be done with a bit of substitution, but brownies are often disappointing (not surprising considering that a “traditional” brownie recipe calls for four eggs and a stick of butter!). Allison’s brownies are guaranteed not to disappoint. A rich, moist, explosion of chocolate-fudge ecstasy, they are sure to please the most finicky of chocoholics or to make the most homesick college student turn handsprings. Still, with such a selection, it’s hard to choose: heavenly fudge brownies, mint chocolate chip cookies, cinnamon snickerdoodles, lemon coconut bars…it’s a happy dilemma! Which will you choose for your special indulgence?

“Where can I find these gems?” you ask? Don’t look for them to be sitting stale on your local health food store’s shelves…Allison’s Cookies are available only by mail order! Visit her website at or give her a call at 800-361-8292 to have a box of freshly made cookies, bars or brownies delivered right to your door (or to the door of your favorite someone). Indulge yourself without compromise… you deserve it.