Carb Zero Bread by Julian Bakery – Great concept, failed execution


As I sit here eating my last slice of Carb 0 Bread by Julian’s Bakery, I am slightly relieved. I ordered two loafs, one cinnamon and one plain, thinking even if this bread is ok, it is going to be great. My standards are set low considering I haven’t had gluten in 9 years and Julian’s has put out some pretty yummy products over the years. I still remember when all gluten free bread was pretty gross. I am relieved because I managed to eat it being that it cost me $12.50 a loaf and I wasn’t going to throw both loaves in the trash. I will start from the beginning.

I was so excited to receive my order. I opened the box up and unpacked the bread. I ever took a picture of it. My roommates think I am nuts. I love cinnamon and I can eat it with a spoon so I tried the cinnamon bread first. It smelled amazing and looked less amazing but I toasted up a piece and put some vegan spread on it. I got 1 bite into it before I spit it out. First problem was there was so much cinnamon in the bread it had taken on a pepper-like quality and was offensive and overwhelming. This made the bread 100% inedible. Second, when you toast it, it becomes so dry as to leech all the moisture from your mouth rendering it inedible as well.

I cautiously opened the second plain loaf and I was witness to a smell I can only explain as the fishy smell you get from Shiraki noodles before you rinse them. Ok, not quite that bad but along those lines. The kind that makes you reconsider eating something no matter how good its supposed to be for you. The plain bread turned out only marginally better. This is the results:

1. Toasted with butter: FAIL, couldnt get rid of the smell/taste and turned into a sponge and sucked all the moisture out of my mouth. Also tried vegan spread, same result.

2. Microwaved with butter: FAIL, smell was still there and could not be covered by butter. Also tried vegan spread, same result.

3. Sandwich with roast beef: ruined the tastes of the roast beef with the overwhelming odd smell and taste. I even tried open faced to cut down on the bread flavor and it still came through.

4. French Toast: wouldn’t stay together. Smell and taste couldn’t be hidden.

5. Peanut butter: the only thing that made this bread acceptable. I have to put so much peanut butter to cover it up, its not worth it.

So after everything, I eat my final slice and I am happy its gone. If I want something that may pass for a delivery system for sandwich ingredients and substitute for bread, I will go with the rice cake. Its actually better. Plus, at $12 a loaf with shipping the cost is ridiculous.

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34 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Lana
    May 04, 2012 @ 23:47:37

    Thank you!! Everyone is saying how great this bread is (probably all Julian Bakery shills)…I thought it smelled like urine and tasted even worse…what a waste of hard earned money…

    Reply

    • Kat
      May 22, 2012 @ 03:35:37

      This is a copy of email I sent to Julian Bakery this morning: “Six Loaves of Julian Bakery’s Carb Zero bread arrived Friday. I was very excited and looked forward to enjoying your newest addition. And, I have tried everything I could think of to get either your plain or the cinnamon Carb Zero bread to taste palatable, but nothing ended up tasting reasonably acceptable. This morning, I tried three different recipes to attempt to make French toast, but none were any good. So, I am working up the courage to remove the five remaining loaves that I immediately stored in my freezer after receiving and tossing into the garbage the rest of $62 worth of wasted hard-earned money.

      Your Smart Carb bread was indeed excellent, so I trusted that your new addition would be great too, but it is not. It is the worst ever and I do not understand any good reviews…”

      After sending this I received an email from Julian Bakery promoting their Zero Carb bread yet again, which was being sent periodically. This was my reply back:

      “DO NOT SEND ME ANY MORE HYPE ABOUT THIS BREAD. IT STINKS AND IS NOT PALATABLE. I ALREADY LOST OVER $62 INTO THE GARBAGE WHERE THIS CARB ZERO BREAD BELONGS. ALSO, I FINALLY GOT TO CHECK MY BLOOD GLUCOSE RELATING TO YOUR SMART CARB BREAD AND IT SPIKED! AND THAT IS WHY I GAINED EIGHT POUNDS…”

      Reply

      • Kayla
        May 22, 2012 @ 11:54:39

        amen! I gained a few when I tried the Carb Zero too. It was quite odd.

      • Kat
        May 22, 2012 @ 17:05:42

        After spending $62, I am this morning cooking up bacon and eggs and do not have a single piece of toast to enjoy with it. I am angry at the deception of it all…

  2. Kayla
    May 22, 2012 @ 23:29:01

    I love Rudi’s and Udi’s but if you are watching carbs, they aren’t an option. Rice cakes are an ok substitute. At least they taste better!

    Reply

    • Kat
      May 23, 2012 @ 00:08:03

      You are right, Julian Bakery is indeed just selling a concept:

      “Gluten Intolerant?— Have Celiacs disease, a gluten intolerance, or just trying to cut down on your gluten intake? CarbZero is the ideal bread for you! Not only does CarbZero have a delicious and moist texture that is difficult to find in most conventionally produced gluten-free breads, but it also holds together perfectly, freezes, and refrigerates well—making it an ideal gluten-free product. Additionally, CarbZero is currently the only bread available on the market that has both zero grams of net carbs and is gluten-free, making it truly a unique addition to your diet.” (taken from their own website)

      The fact that whatever they claim is disingenous does not stop them from making money; they have set it up online so that no matter what, they get to hold onto the money anyway. They, in fact, have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Real customers online are the ones who have everything to lose. I have been asking myself questions such as: “I wonder how many of their favorable reviews were unsolicited from actual customers who actually paid out of their own pockets for the Zero Carb bread?”; “How many complaints like ours have they actually received from real customers?”; “Why do they have blog/s with great reviews that are actually relating to their good-tasting Smart Carb breads, but can seem to be people being favorable about their Carb Zero breads?” No one would ever notice this fact except someone like myself who is upset enough with their product to cause one to look more closely at their online claims. I need to understand for myself how I could have been so stupid/trusting? And, what they offered after I complained is just a hook to get additional money from me. Needless to say, I remain angry. Another question: “By what means did Julian Bakery use to reach their conclusion to deem their Carb Zero bread to be “delicious”?

      After doing blood glucose testing on myself, I now realize that I am most probably not gluten intolerant or even gluten insensitive, but this was the reason supplied by Julian Bakery after my stating that I gained eight pounds from eating their Smart Carb bread. I was convinced they knew what they were talking about… I trusted them!

      Reply

  3. Kat
    Jun 03, 2012 @ 01:07:09

    Just found recipe for homemade “Focaccia -Style Flax Bread”
    on about.com. There are probably over 250 five-star reviews, with people excited about it, adding their own preferences, substitutions, etc. and still enjoying this low-carb, gluten-free bread. There is also a video to watch it being made. It appears, and others confirm, that it is extremely easy to make this bread substitute. I shall as soon as I obtain ingredients. I already use flax seed so it is perfect for me…

    Reply

  4. Kat
    Jun 03, 2012 @ 18:46:12

    Hi, Kayla and Lana,

    The organic golden flaxseed bread with coconut oil I just baked is delicious! Now, I have absolutely no reason to ever waste money on store-bought or online bread ever again. The cooks are blogging terrific suggestions online for additional taste- enhancing changes to the original recipe: pancakes, breakfast sweets, brownies, etc. And, the best part is that I am in control of only having healthy ingredients that compliments my LCHF lifestyle. Win/Win/Win. Save time, energy, money: easy.

    Reply

  5. Sharon
    Jun 15, 2012 @ 17:59:24

    I was so happy to read what you said, especially after reading only glowing reports on the Julian website. I have also tried everything to try to gag this bread down and the only thing that works for me is also peanut butter because it covers the taste and smell of the bread. It is so strange because it never really browns when I try to toast it – just sort of turns black on the edges. The texture is strange and the smell disgusting. I loved the Smart Carb 1 and 2 breads so I had high hopes for these. What aq waste of money!

    Reply

    • Kat
      Jun 15, 2012 @ 21:32:09

      Kalya, the credit for the “Focaccia -Style Flax Bread” recipe truly goes to Laura Dolson at About.com. My specific blog in which I used coconut oil/toaster oven is under “MuchTooTrusting” as one of the over 200 responses (almost all over 4 star-reviews) relating to experience of other bakers. As I pointed out,it does freeze well; it does toast nicely; I, personally, will limit my portions as I want to be able to enjoy a slice of bread without dependence . (Someday, I want to develope a sweeter version too.) One can obtain hundreds of all types of low-carb recipes on Laura’s website.
      Sharon, hope you did not lose as much money as I wasted: $62.94. It is great to be in control, albeit it was a costly process in getting here. I feel like Julian Bakery pulled a bait-and-switch on all of us. We trusted that since their “Smart Carb” bread was so tasty, they would know what is palatable and what is not palatable. Perhaps you too can change the homemade bread to suit your preferences or find other healthy bread, etc. alternatives on About.com low-carb recipes.Good luck!

      Reply

      • Sharon
        Jun 15, 2012 @ 22:05:49

        I wasted about the same amount of money which is why I am really trying to find some way to eat it. I will have to try the focaccia-style bread. I printed it from Laura’s site some time ago and just have not tried it. Your endorsement of the recipe means alot since your reaction to the zerocarb bread was just about identical to mine! I was reluctant to try it since it uses quite a bit of flax meal and eggs and I did not want to waste the ingredients on something that did not taste good. But even if I do not like the focaccia bread, the cost won’t be anywhere near what that zerocarb cost.

      • Kat
        Jun 16, 2012 @ 00:32:08

        Sharon, may I suggest you read through some of the other bakers’ blogs to learn how you can tweak it for your own taste preference. I can understand why some say it is “oily.” However, I think flax seed is a very healthy fat in limited amounts and I am on a LCHF (low-carb, high fat) diet. You could cut the recipe in half, if you are concerned about not liking it and/or wasting ingredients. I remember at least one blogger did that and was pleased. I used organic golden flaxseed meal and I would not need to oil the nonstick foil the next time. (The manufacturer says not to use its parchment paper inside a toaster oven.) I am confident that I, myself, can tweak the basic recipe and end up with my favorite ingredients incorporated into a perfect bread substitute that I will totally enjoy whenever I want. I just never realized that it would be so quick and easy. May I suggest watching the video of the bread being made. The website also describes the benefits of flaxseed along with its limitations. It is a great website for healthy food information, thanks to Laura and other low-carb diet contributors.

  6. Kat
    Jun 17, 2012 @ 17:28:35

    Update re Focaccia -Style Flax Bread: This morning, I had defrosted slice of bread and after toasting; it did not taste so good. I suspect that somehow it relates to the flax seed oil. So, even though I recommended this so highly, I am not going to make again after this experience. Instead, I am going to, someday, choose one of the many “paleo chocolate nut bread” recipes online and consider it an ocassional breakfast treat (without flax seed). The truth is that I must be addicted to bread somehow to have made this so important; perhaps that addiction is the issue I should work on. Sorry about that!

    Reply

  7. Kayla
    Jun 17, 2012 @ 18:11:00

    Not as strange as you would think to be addicted to bread. I have read that there is a real addition to carbohydrates and that chemically, there is something in your body that craves them.

    Reply

    • Kat
      Jun 17, 2012 @ 19:20:08

      My decision is to not eat any breads whatsoever (homemade or otherwise) for the next 30 days while testing my level of addictiveness. Having this forum for sharing should be supportive in my goal. Thank you so much for your understanding…

      Reply

      • Sharon
        Jun 17, 2012 @ 21:48:03

        Once I start eating them, I can’t seem to stop, so I just need to avoid them. I am not diabetic, but I certainly feel better when I do not eat them. The only bread I can eat and not want more is that blasted zerocarb bread!

      • Kat
        Jun 18, 2012 @ 02:20:52

        Tee hee, dear Sharon, isn’t that the truth. But, think of how insane it would be if we all craved the stinkin Zero Carb bread. What a nightmare! Have you guys seen the youtube video: “Enjoy your saturated fats, they are good for you” Donald Miller, M.D., (cardiac surgeon). If you have time to watch–one hour long–but well worth the time spent, I believe, please let me know what you think? This is what recently turned me into a LCHF dietary student…

      • Sharon
        Jun 18, 2012 @ 13:08:40

        Very interesting. I am going to watch it again when I can take down the names of some of the references that Dr Miller gives to the other books. It amazes me that if a person has Celiacs, there is no problem telling that person that wheat products just have to be eliminated and no one says that is just impossible and can not possibly be done but if a person is diagnosed with diabetes, the attitude is totally different. It is considered radical and extreme to suggest that since a person has a metabolic problem with glucose that carbohydrates should be drastically reduced or eliminated from the diet. Instead, the approach is to take ever-increasing amounts of medications, up to and including insulin, to control the blood glucose. And the obligatory statins to lower the cholesterol, etc., etc. But I will get off of my soapbox now and go eat some saturated fats!

      • Kat
        Jun 18, 2012 @ 16:14:53

        We need more people on soapboxes.

      • Kayla
        Jun 18, 2012 @ 16:22:26

        Oddly, with all this talk of no carb, I started a juice cleanse today to reset my brain and body. I hear its a serious journey.

  8. Kayla
    Jun 17, 2012 @ 19:54:05

    It totally works. I was low – no carb for years. I find the more I allow them into my diet, the more I crave them.

    Reply

  9. Kayla
    Jun 18, 2012 @ 15:08:55

    they cant make money off of a healthy diet and they dont have a pill for Celiac. Simple as that.

    Reply

  10. Marilyn
    Jun 18, 2012 @ 19:08:11

    I have tried this bread too. I did not like it at all!!! I thru it out.

    Reply

    • Sharon
      Jun 20, 2012 @ 14:35:08

      I think the answer to the approaches to Celeiacs and diabetes treatment really could be that simple. Follow the money.

      Reply

      • Kat
        Jun 20, 2012 @ 16:10:59

        Gary Taubes’ “Why We Get Fat” is a wonderful book or you may view his thoughts on youtube for free along with many others: type “LCHF diet.”

  11. Kat
    Jul 16, 2012 @ 19:12:16

    Laura at about.com reported today: Low-Carb Bread Consumer Fights Back. This woman had Julian Bakery “Smart Carb Bread” lab tested and proved that Julian Bakery is not truthful. She also welcomes others to personally telephone her re her crusade against deceptiveness of the low-carb sellers. Good for her! Julian Bakery has not responded appropriately; probably too busy counting their cash…

    Reply

  12. Judi Miller
    Jan 08, 2013 @ 18:01:42

    I enjoyed their Smart Carb Breads for years until they changed the recipe. It is disgusting now. I won’t be reordering and hope I can save someone from wasting their money.

    Reply

  13. Mo
    Jan 12, 2013 @ 16:08:33

    Interesting… I just ate two slices of the carb zero bread and while the taste is quite neutral it is not horrid as you claim. Unless you are quite picky. Other than that.. The flavor is neutral.

    Reply

    • Kayla
      Jan 12, 2013 @ 17:58:30

      Its possible that since I tried it, they have changed their recipe. There are also rumors out there that it is not as Carb “zero” as it once was and whispers say they might be fudging the label.

      Reply

      • sharon
        Jan 14, 2013 @ 00:41:38

        I will be very wary of buying it again as it is very expensive and I do not want to poor more money down the drain. I also tried the paleo bread and it was bad. I loved their old smart carb bread.

  14. LowCarbGurl
    Mar 05, 2013 @ 20:26:03

    I had a health food store in NYC order the Paleo Coconut and Almond Bread…I totally wasted almost $30. Even after I tried hiding the flavor of the bread by using half a stick of butter to make a grilled cheese, GROSS! The bread doesn’t brown, just turns soggy, and the cheese slid rid off! I tried hiding the bread with Almond Butter, again, I wasted the Almond Butter, I’d rather use my finger then subject myself to the morphed item they are labeling as “bread”. I really tried and really wanted to like it but it’s utterly disgusting. I would rather go bread-less or as a poster said…rice cakes! The people that “toot” about it haven’t tried it yet…let them try it, then they will feel so bad about how much they spent they will force themselves to eat it until they become like me and say “eff this” and throw it out. I give them credit for effort but come one…its the worst bread I have ever tasted. Oh…this will give you a chuckle, I threw some at seagulls and they wouldn’t eat it!

    Reply

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