Larissa has loved baking since she was six years old, so when she was diagnosed with celiac disease as an adult, her world came crashing down. The diagnosis meant she could no longer bake her grandmother’s recipes or enjoy pastries; there were no local gluten-free bakery options. Larissa refused to give up and began experimenting with various ingredients, creating her own flours to work around her allergies as well as the nut and gluten allergies of her daughter Hannah. With encouragement from her friends and inspiration from her daughters, Larissa decided to open Hannah’s Gluten Free Bakery to bring gluten-free sweets to her community.
“My whole family helps, even the youngest, who’s eight,” Larissa said. “For us, baking is the language of love.” When it was time to grow into a new, bigger location, she realized she needed more capital to support her business growth. Her bank referred her to LiftFund, where she received a loan to buy new bakery equipment. Hannah’s Gluten Free Bakery has since received local and national attention from publications such as USA Today, D Magazine, and was recently filmed by the Food Network.
“This is just the first small step,” Larissa said. “My dream is to eventually take this worldwide.”