Zambawango Desserts & Coffee is an innovative cafe that offers delicious desserts, bagels, pizzas, bread, and coffee drinks at its location in Sandy Springs. They also ship nationwide from their commercial bakery in Alpharetta and can cater to commercial entities. Unlike your typical dessert shop, this bakery has a mission beyond just satisfying your sweet tooth- everything on the menu is keto-friendly and many of the items are gluten-free and prepared in a gluten-free friendly facility. Not only that but unlike many packaged diet and keto-friendly foods, these baked goods aren’t filled with highly processed ingredients- just whole natural foods like almond and coconut flours, eggs, cream, high cacao content chocolate, natural cheeses, and the like allow for delicious products that don’t compromise on taste.
Zambawango was established from the start to be a different type of bakery. With that in mind, they hired an executive pastry chef who was passionate about developing keto and gluten-free recipes, helping to make the vision of owner and founder George Coundouriotis a reality. Mr. Coundouriotis himself had struggled to keep the weight off over the years and concluded his sweet tooth had been sabotaging him, so decided to give the ketogenic lifestyle a try. He dropped 60 pounds and achieved a healthy weight, which he’s been able to maintain partly thanks to the availability of his own products. Humans have a deeply embedded evolutionary desire for sweetness- our ancestors developed a genetic predisposition to like the taste. It was an indication of quick and valuable energy in whatever was being eaten. Our problem today is exactly the opposite of our ancestors. We’ve got too much sugar available, but we still have the genetic craving to consume it whenever we see it. Mr. Coundouriotis, like many people, still had those cravings, and giving in to them would sabotage his diet. Even when (maybe especially when!) adopting a ketogenic diet, those cravings continue. Cheating on a ketogenic diet is particularly problematic because it pulls you out of ketosis, you stop making ketones and lose their benefits, and you possibly gain rebound weight. Not to mention that you now have to get back into ketosis. This sort of yo-yo effect can be particularly hard on the body- and your willpower. Mr. Coundouriotis points out that the types of products that you’ll find at Zambawango are much more likely to sate the cravings you have for sugar without that sugar hangover and without interrupting a ketogenic diet. What’s more, you are more likely to feel full and satisfied when getting your calories from whole foods like cream, eggs, cheeses, and nut flours, which all contain protein than you are from the empty calories of sugar.
So how do they do it? Can scrumptious desserts and savory baked goods really be ketogenic? Indeed they can. Using almond flour and coconut flour along with other proteins can keep the carbs low in savory goods, and the sweeteners aren’t necessary. For sweets, the same flours are used along with whole foods, and it’s all sweetened with a combination of low glycemic sweeteners like Swerve, allulose, and stevia. In fact, almost everything comes in at 5 grams of carbs or less per serving, meaning that bread, bagels, pizzas, pies, cakes, cookies, and more can still be indulged in on a ketogenic diet. If you’re really craving the sweet stuff, or carbs, having something from this bakery could help you maintain ketosis and give you some necessary protein to boot. Packaged ketogenic foods can be supremely unsatisfying, leaving many of us to try to create our own. For those of you that have tried this yourself in the kitchen, you’ll know it isn’t easy to create something sweet, keto-friendly, and crave-able. Let a professional pastry chef that has worked to hone these recipes do this for you.
Not only are these baked goods ketogenic and delicious, most of these items (except for the bread and some pizza) are gluten-free. Patients with gluten sensitivities will be happy to hear that Zambawango has a dedicated environment for making all gluten-free products. It’s just as hard to find tasty and satisfying gluten-free products as it is to find those that are keto-friendly. I for one, being gluten sensitive, am excited to try their fantastic looking gluten-free focaccia style pizzas as well as their range of gluten-free bagels. If you have other allergies or are concerned about exactly which ingredients are used in each product, you’ll be happy to know that Zambawango is exacting about listing allergens and all ingredients for each baked good.
We thought that our patients at Progressive Medical Center would want to know about this fantastic find. Whether you are on a ketogenic diet, just trying to lower your carb or sugar intake, are gluten sensitive, are diabetic or in cancer recovery/treatment and looking for healthier options to celebrate a milestone, or just want a (not so) indulgent treat, give Zambawango a try. We recommend them. If you are local, you can visit the cafe and enjoy one of their low-glycemic coffee beverages alongside your treat. If you live elsewhere, most of their products are shippable. Check them out!