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Our Story

How It All Started


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GLUTEN-FREE Cookbooks, checklists, recipes and more!

The idea for Vookies was born on December 2017 when the founders Mariana Lessmann from Venezuela and Matt Ackerson from NY noticed there were few good gluten-free food options.

For Matt who is gluten intolerant (i.e. he cannot eat wheat, rye, or barley) eating was a torture.

At the supermarkets there were few brands he liked, but not brands he loved. 

Some brands were safe, some others weren’t (even though they had a gluten-free label on).

Eating bland and cross-contaminated food was the common thing. 

Mariana used to cook an upgraded version of a Latin American dessert recipe "Alfajores" for family and friends back home.

On Thanksgiving 2017 she made them for Matt and he couldn’t believe he was eating something gluten-free, tasty and delightful but at the same time safe.

No pain or brain fog after eating (these are common symptoms of a gluten intolerant person). 

The dessert was a complete success for a Celiac!

Mariana and Matt decided to turn these soft "cookie sandwiches" filled with caramel or chocolate cream into a new food alternative for Celiacs.

They came up with the name “Vookies, The Venezuelan Cookies” since Mariana is from that country.

They started selling them in coffee shops in Huntington, NY and within minutes, people started buying them.

Evolution Of The Idea

The founders Mariana and Matt wanted to make an impact on Celiacs lives.

After selling the first Vookies  they started to feel more inspired.

They thought about how complicated life for Celiacs can be and how could they make an impact in their lives.

The brand has been evolving and now it's turning into something bigger.

It's not just a gluten-free dessert anymore.

A Better Life For Celiacs

Mariana and Matt have been traveling for the past year within Latin America (Dominican Republic, Costa Rica and Colombia).

While traveling they have learned about those countries gastronomy and started brainstorming on how to help Celiacs to have a safer and tastier eating lifestyle. 

Mariana and Matt noticed there are few good gluten-free food options outside the U.S. 

Even though they are not nutritionists they started researching for safe gluten-free food brands and tested recipes 100% wheat, rye and barley free that could be made with 10 ingredients or less in 30 minutes or less for people like Matt who are looking to stay healthy by eating safe and tasty. 

They started writing a blog with traveling and cooking tips, places to visit, and food and restaurants reviews.

While Mariana and Matt were in Medellin, Colombia they created "The Easy Gluten-Free Recipe Cookbook" with 39 easy and delicious recipes that will make you feel no stomach ache or brain fog after eating and will make you spend less time in the kitchen.

This Cookbook will help you save money and time, and will make you enjoy delicious meals.

"The Easy Gluten Free Recipe Book" is for everyone!

Not only Celiacs can enjoy it. People who are looking to cook easy recipes and not spend so much time in the kitchen are more than welcome to try, specially people who after eating gluten get swollen belly, feel gassy and/or have stomach aches.

Social Input

As part of this project, Matt and Mariana found inspiration in lots of entrepreneurs that have made social businesses and agreed to destine part of the profits to the people in Venezuela who are going through a humanitarian, political and economic crisis.

We believe that there is a better way to satisfy Celiacs.

We are convinced that the world would be a better place if there were more safe and delicious food for Celiacs.

Our Mission

Everyday we commit to make your gluten-free diet a better, tastier and safer eating style. 

Our mission is to bring easy and tasty recipes ideas to your table so you can eat delicious without feeling sick.

  • Since day one we have been focused on offering Celiacs a different eating lifestyle with a variety of delicious meals that are safe to eat.
  • We are committed to create and produce interesting content that can cause a good impact on Celiacs’ lives. Creativity is key on searching and bringing you ideas for your daily menu.
  • We look to build strong relationships within Celiacs who want to interact in our forums.
  • We are committed to offer new, safe and tasty food options into the Celiac Market.
  • We will continue working on self improvement, making this project not a work but something helpful and fun for the people who are willing to join us in the journey.