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  • Kallie Theisen

Brownies and Cookies and Bars, Oh My!

The Brookings Farmers Market is home to many tasty products, but only one vendor creates baked goods that are completely flourless. 



Bizzy Lizzy owner Sheila Rae Olauson started making flourless bakery items in 2007. She began baking cookies for her children, but eventually attracted other customers. 


“All of my friends and their friends were saying that the cookies were great, so I started making them for more people,” Olauson says. With some open weekends on the schedule, “we decided that selling at a farmers market could be a fun family activity.” 


After marketing the treats in Chelsea, Michigan, for many years, Olauson and her family outgrew their space and decided to bring Bizzy Lizzy Flourless Bakery to South Dakota.  


Bizzy Lizzy products are sold in selected Hy-Vee stores in South Dakota, Michigan, Minnesota, Iowa, and Nebraska. Olauson bakes goods ranging from cookies to bread to cakes. All of the Bizzy Lizzy recipes are created by Olauson, but they don’t always turn out perfectly on the first try. 


“I usually fail once and then I can figure out where I went wrong and come back with a better version,” she says. “Then it’s about taking it from that small version up to a big version.”


One recipe Olauson thought she would never perfect is the brownie. She says she believed she would never be able to get the texture right, but after a lot of hard work, she created a delicious, flourless brownie. 


Olauson started off baking in her family kitchen, but now has a fully operational bakery in White, South Dakota. The Bizzy Lizzy bakery sits next to her family’s farmhouse, with a walkway making the journey between the two buildings more enjoyable. In addition, the business has four commercial ovens, three large mixers, and a packaging machine. 


Although Bizzy Lizzy continues to grow, family remains at the core of the bakery. When asked about her favorite part of owning a bakery, Olauson said she enjoys working with her family. 


“I get to work with my parents, who are 84 years old,” Olauson says. “They come to the bakery every day to help me.”


She also gets to bake with her daughter Lizzy, the bakery’s namesake. 


The family atmosphere extends beyond relatives, Olauson says. “When we get new clients and new stores, they become family, too. Most of the people we started with in Michigan we stay in very good contact with and they are just like family. They were part of our lives then and are still part of our lives now.”


Bizzy Lizzy will be back at the Brookings Farmers Market in 2024.



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