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Dec 13 2014

Gluten-Free Holiday Tips

Christmas is twelve days from today. Are you ready? I’m nowhere close. My Christmas cards are sitting in the Shutterfly box ready to be addressed, but that is as far as I have gotten on that front. I still have gifts left to buy and most importantly, the Christmas tree hasn’t been put up and decorating hasn’t been done yet.

Food is another thing that I haven’t even begun to think about. Maybe that is because I have been doing the same thing for several years that it is almost like I am on autopilot. Here are some of my tried and true Holiday shortcuts.

  • Peanut Butter Fudge – Takes less than 15 minutes from start to finish and never fails to wow the crowd.
  • Buffalo Chicken Dip – Toss everything together in a sauce pan as directed & then transfer to a crockpot to cook/keep warm.  Serve with celery & tortilla chips.
  • Old Fashioned Gingerbread – Not too complicated to make & it tastes like it was a lot of work!
  • Cocktail Wienies – Lit’l Smokies are gluten-free.  Toss in a crock pot with some Sweet Baby Ray’s or your favorite BBQ sauce.
  • Veggie tray with dill dip – Marzetti’s dip is gluten-free.
  • Chocolate Truffles – Ali of The Healthy Hostess shared these – 2 ingredients (both naturally gluten-free).  Simple!
  • Honeybaked Ham – Pick up a ham or turkey – they are gluten-free!
  • Salad – Grab a box of salad, tomatoes, cucumber, feta cheese & some gluten-free salad dressing.Mixed nuts – dump into a festive, decorative dish.
  • Cheese tray – cut blocks of cheese into cubes and display on a tray
  • Chips & salsa
  • Fruit salad – Buy pre-cut fruit if you are really pressed for time.

Enjoy friends and family and give yourself permission to accept what you can do and don’t focus on things you planned to do, but were unable to get to.  ’Tis the season to celebrate, spend time with the ones you love and have fun!


Dec 12 2014

Trader Joe’s New Gluten-Free Items

Trader Joe’s has two locations in the Columbus area, but neither are close to where we live. If I know I am going to be in the area close to either location, I try to make time to run in and take a quick peek around and pick up some of our favorites. When I ran in earlier this week after getting my oil changed at our Toyota dealer, I grabbed a few fun new products. 

First I picked up a few of the new gluten-free Luna bars. After discovering last week that Luna bar had changed their ingredients so that all of the varieties would be gluten-free from here forward, I have been checking the shelves of the stores I frequent that carry the bars. I have successfully picked up gluten-free versions of nine  of the twelve varieties now! Even better? They are $.99 at Trader Joe’s. 

Next I found a new gluten-free mix in the baking aisle:

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Fun, right? I can’t wait to make these brownies this weekend!

Next up? New gluten-free pasta blend.

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Gluten-Free Brown Rice & Quinoa Pasta

This is great news for those out there who avoid corn (corn pasta). I have always been a big fan of pastas that use a blend of flours, especially when that blend includes quinoa. 

I was disappointed that the Sawmill Rd. Trader Joe’s location was out of the Gluten-Free Joe Joe’s (peppermint version) and would’t be getting any more in. Bummer!

Have you spotted any of these items at your Trader Joe’s? What about anything else new that I should know about? 


Dec 11 2014

Earth’s Best Gluten-Free Options

Let’s face it, kids can be picky eaters. I know there are a select few out there that will eat anything, but that gene must have skipped my kids. As if getting healthy foods into a child isn’t hard enough, eliminate an ingredient, like gluten, and things get even tougher.

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Earth’s Best are products specifically designed for infants, toddlers and kids from wholesome, organic ingredients. Not all of the Earth’s Best products are gluten-free, but these five are:

  • Gluten-Free Baked Chicken Nuggets
  • Gluten-Free Broccoli & Cheese Baked Nuggets
  • Gluten-Free Sweet Potato Baked Nuggets
  • Gluten-Free French Toast Sticks
  • Wholesome Morning – Gluten-Free Quinoa & Brown Rice Sweet Potato Cinnamon

Of course some of the infant baby food products are also gluten-free, but watch the ingredients on the Stage 2 and Stage 3 where grains may be added in for texture.

All of Earth’s Best ingredients are organic and non-GMO. More about Earth’s Best:

Earth’s Best Organic provides “better for baby” products with the freshest, purest ingredients, so parents can nurture their baby’s health with the utmost confidence.

Earth’s Best products can be found in stores across the US. I don’t know about you, but I spotted some of the Earth’s Best nuggets in the freezer at Whole Foods the other day and I thought about buying them for myself. You don’t have to be a kid to enjoy them, right?


Dec 10 2014

Amy’s New Products

The holidays are here! Stores are in full holiday mode with Christmas music and sales bombarding us at every turn. As we all rush around preparing for our celebrations, get togethers and THE big day, we still need to eat. Food prep often takes a back seat during this hectic season, so consider checking out some of Amy’s gluten-free products to help fill in the gaps.

Amy’s has a wide range of gluten-free products, many of which are also free of dairy, vegan, etc. As I was browsing through this list, I found several new products that I wanted to call out to our readers. 

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Gluten-Free Biscotti offered in both Chocolate and Orange and perfect for an afternoon treat with a cup of hot cocoa, tea or coffee.

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Gluten-Free Vegetable Pot Pie makes a wonderful, quick meal. The dish is packed full of veggies and tofu and nestled in a light, gluten-free pastry crust. 

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Gluten-Free Brownies made with organic chocolate are perfect to keep on hand for those last minute visitors that stop by. 

The “Family Size” gluten-free products also caught my eye. What better way to feed your family fast after a busy day or evening packed full of holiday activities? There are four different varieties of the “Family Size” gluten-free meals:

  • Thai Red Curry
  • Cheese Enchiladas
  • Broccoli Cheddar Bake
  • Mexican Casserole

Look for Amy’s gluten-free products in mainstream and health food stores across the US. Do you have a favorite Amy’s gluten-free product? Which one?  


Dec 9 2014

Gratify Gluten-Free Adds Holiday Pretzels

Gratify Foods began making gluten-free pretzels in 2012 and has since focused on expanding their line-up. In addition to many varieties of pretzels, cookies and crackers, there are four new varieties of pretzels for the holidays. The new pretzels even have a red holiday bow across the top right corner!

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The new holiday pretzels include:

White Chocolate & Peppermint Coated Twists – White Chocolate (Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Whole Milk Pwder, Soy Lecithin (an Emulsifier), Salt, Natural Vanilla, Flavor), Pretzel (Corn Starch, Palm Oil, Potato Starch, Sea Salt, Sugar, Dry Yeast, Cellulose Gum, Soy Lecithin, Leavening (Sodium Bicarbonate, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate)), Sugar, Corn Syrup, Vegetable Juice Color, Caramel Color, Natural Peppermint Oil.

Dark Chocolate Coated Twists - Dark Chocolate (Sugar, Chocolate Liquor Processed with Alkali, Cocoa Butter, Soy Lecithin (an Emulsifier), Vanilla), Pretzel (Corn Starch, Palm Oil, Potato Starch, Sea Salt, Sugar, Dry Yeast, Cellulose Gum, Soy Lecithin, Leavening (Sodium Bicarbonate, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate)).

Dark Chocolate & Peppermint Coated Twists – Dark Chocolate (Sugar, Chocolate Liquor Processed with Alkali, Cocoa Butter, Soy Lecithin (an Emulsifier), Vanilla), Pretzel (Corn Starch, Palm Oil, Potato Starch, Sea Salt, Sugar, Dry Yeast, Cellulose Gum, Soy Lecithin, Leavening (Sodium Bicarbonate, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate)), Sugar, Corn Syrup, Vegetable Juice Color, Caramel Color, Natural Peppermint Oil.

Peanut Butter & Milk Chocolate Coated Twists – Milk Chocolate (Sugar, Milk, Chocolate Liquor, Cocoa Butter, Soy Lecithin (an Emulsifier), Vanilla), Pretzel (Corn Starch, Palm Oil, Potato Starch, Sea Salt, Sugar, Dry Yeast, Cellulose Gum, Soy Lecithin, Leavening (Sodium Bicarbonate, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate)), Peanut Butter Melt Base (Peanuts, Sugar, Palm Kernel Oil, Lactose, Salt, Soy Lecithin ( an Emulsifier)), Dark Chocolate (Sugar, Chocolate Liquor Processed with Alkali, Cocoa Butter, Soy Lecithin (an Emulsifier), Vanilla), White Confectioners Coating (Sugar, Palm Kernel Oil, Non Fat Milk Powder, Whey Powder, Palm Oil, Soy Lecithin (an Emulsifier), Vanilla)

The holiday pretzels can be found in grocery stores across the US or at Amazon.com and make a great stocking stuffer or hostess gift idea. More about Gratify:

Created in 2012 by Osem, Gratify Foods’ vision is to help make following a gluten-free diet as simple and as delicious as possible. Their first products to market include six varieties of pretzels, distributed across the United States. Osem has a long history of creating unique and innovative gluten-free foods distributed worldwide. For additional information including ingredient and nutritional information, visit www.gratifyfoods.com or find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/gratifyfoods or follow on Twitter: @gratifyfoods

Have you spotted or tried the new pretzels from Gratify? If so, what did you think?