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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

{gluten-free favorites}

My little girl was diagnosed with Celiac disease last fall, which means that she needs to eat a gluten-free diet. It is an auto-immune disease, and the more we know about it, the more people are being diagnosed with it. It might even affect one of your own family members or friends, one of your children's friends or child in their classroom, or even a co-worker.

So, I thought I would share my favorite, tried and true gluten free products with you--the ones we love and use most often. Some of them are so good, you can hardly tell a difference! Others are not so good, and hopefully this will help you skip right to the best ones!

1. Pamela's Baking and Pancake Mix


I honestly cannot say enough good things about this mix. I don't know how they did it, but they created the perfect mix--for baking and for pancakes. When Emma was first diagnosed, I made two batches of pancakes--one for her, and one for everyone else. Well, after the kids tasted hers, I had a rebellion on my hands, and they wanted them too! Now I just make one batch, and everyone is happy. I also substitute it equally for flour when I'm baking. It does contain leavening, so I just reduce the amount of baking powder or baking soda in the recipe. Everything we've made has been delicious, and it's a definite staple at our house. Pamela's also has a bread mix that's really good--great for pizza crusts.

It can be expensive at the grocery store--around $5-$6 for a small bag. We buy it through Amazon, where you can get it in a 4 lb. bag. It's significantly less expensive, and when you have it auto-delivered (we do), there's another 15% discount + free shipping.

Try THIS recipe...it's fabulous!

2. Schar Pasta



Gluten-free pastas can be really good, or really, really bad. This one is our favorite--the taste is excellent, and it's not gummy, like some can be (as long as you don't cook it too long!) We eat a lot of pasta at our house, so I'm making this a lot.

3. Glutino Pretzel Twists


Snacks are important when you're a kid, and 99% of those in the snack aisle are not gluten-free. These pretzels are, and they are so good, you can barely tell a difference. They're perfect for snacking, and for dipping in chocolate during holidays and special occasions.

4. Betty Crocker Brownie Mix


Can we just say YUMMY and leave it at that? Seriously, these are SO good, and I am willing to bet that unless you told someone they were gluten-free, they wouldn't be able to tell. They are best right out of the oven, and we rarely have any leftovers. Our whole family loves these!

5. Kinni-Toos
These are basically gluten-free Oreos. With Emma starting kindergarten in the fall, I want to have some fun treats on hand to substitute for those that might be in the classroom she can't have. I love making Oreo Truffles, and now we can still make them!

6. Annie's Mac and Cheese


We don't make macaroni and cheese very often, but it's nice to know that there is a really great option when we want to have it for lunch every so often.

7. Mini Rice Cakes



These are ALWAYS in our pantry. I buy the store brand--they're the best--in the caramel flavor. Emma loves these for lunch, dipped in peanut butter, or stacked with deli meat and cheese.

.....

Whether this disease directly impacts you or someone you love right now or not, it's possible you or someone you know will cross paths with it at some point. When it does, hopefully this will help.

If you have any tried and true favorites you'd like to share, please leave a comment. I'd love to hear them. We are relatively new to this, and I know there are other great products out there just waiting to be tried!


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23 Comments:

Blogger Amy said...

We are newly gluten-free in our house as well. It seemed so overwhelming and disappointing at first, and we've really taken heart at all the options out there. We love Van's gluten-free frozen waffles, and Coconut Bliss ice cream.

April 5, 2011 at 8:31 AM  
Blogger laxsupermom said...

Great post! So many of your favorites are our favorites, too! Glutino also makes chocolate covered pretzels, too. I only find them in the health food store, but so worth it. WD loves it when I add some of those to trail mix.

I generally bake from scratch, but I like Bob's Red Mill Chocolate Cake mix when I'm in a hurry, and you've already mentioned it, but Pamela's makes the best pancakes.

And of course, there's the Holy Grail of gf foods - Udi's Bread. If you've suffered through nasty, crumbly, just plain bad bread. Go find yourself some Udi's. It's a game changer. You'll weep from joy, and drive completely out of your way to score some. Trust me on this. Go find some right now.

April 5, 2011 at 9:37 AM  
Blogger Deanna said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!! My husband has Celiac, as does his mom and sister, and a lot of his family. I'm a bread-n-milk kinda gal, so this 'no gluten' thing has been SOOOOOOOO hard for me!!! Thank you so much for these food reviews!!!

April 5, 2011 at 10:19 AM  
Blogger Kyra said...

My toddler has dairy, wheat, egg and peanut allergies so buying gluten free foods is an easy way to avoid wheat for us. Have you tried the new GF Bisquick mix? I've made several things including mountains of pancakes and I can't even tell its GF it's so good! (i buy it on amazon to save $)
Van's frozen waffles are safe too and they come in plain, blueberry and apple cinnamon. They are a staple here.
Our other staple are chips specifically Plaintain chips and Veggie straws.

April 5, 2011 at 10:25 AM  
Blogger The crazy chaos I call life... said...

My daughter was diagnosed with Celiac Disease at just under 2 years old.... she's not a VERY healthy 5 year old! Did you know Kellogs is FINALLY Stepping up!? They are making a GF Rice Krispie (made with brown rice) and should be available this June.

My daughter's fav are her home made bread and Bisquick pancakes/waffles. YUMM!

April 5, 2011 at 10:30 AM  
Blogger The crazy chaos I call life... said...

now.. not "not" Oops

April 5, 2011 at 10:32 AM  
Blogger Jess said...

My son is off of gluten, dairy, and sugar and it's always good to hear we're not going it alone! We bake mostly from scratch with ideas from places like elanaspantry.com and thespunkycoconut.com but the products everyone's mentioned are pretty much the ones we love too! It's so worth it when you realize you made it through a whole winter without visiting the pediatrician, woohoo!

April 5, 2011 at 10:44 AM  
Blogger Katie Bishop said...

I am gluten-diary free (Celiacs for 2 years!) and have found Elizabeth Hasslebacks' book the G-Free diet to very helpful. I love that she has a list of places where we can eat when we are out (like Chick-Fila) and breaks out even shampoos that have gluten in them. (Which is very helpful). We even found a gluten-free bakery in our small town where they make bread, brownies, and all kinds of goodies. But the best place I have ever been was Disney World. They had all kinds of food I could eat and the chefs came out and went through the buffet line to help me know what I can eat or not. Thanks for sharing your tips!

April 5, 2011 at 11:17 AM  
Blogger Jeni said...

Udis is the best thing to ever happen to people with celiac! My daughter and I have it, and possibly more of my kids do also. We love Udi's bagels as well. Love Schar and Mrs. Leeper's pasta. Though I was forced to buy another brand a couple weeks ago. They didn't have my favorites. It's called Tinkyada. I was surprised at how light and yummy it was for being a brown rice pasta. We also love Chebe. Their cheese balls are to die for and so easy to make. My 10 yo makes them all the time. I order the mixes by the cases from their website. Kinnickinnick has some yummy products as well. Their bread is good, but I'd rather have Udi's. Good luck! It's tough with the kids when everyone around them is eating things they can't. My daughter handels it pretty well. Though I do on occasion get a frantic phone call from her at school saying someone brought cupcakes in and can I PLEASE bring something for her.

April 5, 2011 at 11:52 AM  
Blogger Michelle said...

I just got an email today from Real Simple with 15 gluten-free foods. Here's a link:

http://www.realsimple.com/magazine-more/inside-website/daily-finds/gluten-free-goodies-00000000033105/index.html?xid=df-04-05-2011

April 5, 2011 at 12:59 PM  
Blogger Christy said...

Try the Cake Mix Doctor Bakes Gluten Free. She gives you simple ways to take the average yellow GF cake mix (in most cases) and make them extraordinary. My daughter loved the Chocolate Chip Cake! She's only wheat-free, but GF products are an easy bet to be wheat-free, so we buy a lot.

April 5, 2011 at 3:00 PM  
Blogger Heather Mullin said...

Thank you so much for this post. I am 32 years old and newly married. I have fibromylgia and RA but have still been really sick. We finally learned a little about Celiac disease. I am getting tested for it this week. We are pretty sure I have it but regardless, I am going on the G-free diet. So, this is all so new to me. Thank you again for posting this.

Heather

April 5, 2011 at 3:40 PM  
Blogger Seven Sisters said...

you have to try udi's bagels! Udi's makes the BEST gluten free bread! I am gluten intolerant myself for over a year now and it's not as bad as people think. I've posted about some of my gluten free adventures, just click on the "gluten free" label on our blog! ~*S*~

April 5, 2011 at 5:07 PM  
Blogger kelly said...

love this post. i have celiac and eat most of those things. haven't tried that brand of pasta, i usually eat tinkyada. i order a lot from kinnikinnick when toasted it is really good. udi bagels are the best though!! i love whole foods, so many choices. i love pirates booty, luna bars, glutino pretzels (now synders has a gf brand) and targets brand multigrain tortilla chips.
here are a few great blogs/sites: adventuresofaglutenfreemom.com, glutenfreeeasily.com,crockpot365.blogspot.com,allergyfree.wordpress.com, momnivores-dilemma.com

April 5, 2011 at 7:59 PM  
Blogger Emily Love said...

I'm not gluten free, but I'm always on the lookout for GF foods because I work with children with Autism who are almost all GFCF (gluten and casein (dairy) free). I just bought these today and they are DELICIOUS!!

http://www.popchips.com/

April 5, 2011 at 9:05 PM  
Blogger Craig and Lauren Dalling said...

My husband is a pharmacist and was strongly encouraged to learn about a website created by Alessio Fasano, M.D. The link is www.glutenfreedrugs.com It has a list of over the counter medications without gluten in them and certain manufacturers that create gluten-free prescriptions. Maybe it will be helpful to someone!

April 6, 2011 at 12:05 AM  
Blogger Rebekah said...

Celiac runs in my husband's family. And while he is fortunate enough to be able to have gluten in his diet, many of his family members aren't. His grandfather even had a twin sister who died at age four of it. So it goes way back. My husband's cousin has her own Eating Gluten Free business. And I believe she even has some of her products in stores in Utah. If you are interested, and from what I gather is that most people with celiac will do almost anything to find good recipes and products, her website is www.eatingglutenfree.com. Anyway, just thought I'd give you another resource.

April 6, 2011 at 2:38 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Great list of Gluten Free products!

My Top 5 Gluten Free Products:
1. Gluten Free Bisquick! Love it for pancakes and chicken.
2. Tinkyada brown rice pasta. It tastes like pasta!
3. Gorilla Munch cereal by EnviroKidz Organic. LOVE IT!
4. Larabars. I always have one with me just in case!
5. Pecan Nut-Thins crackers. Great on their own or with a dip

www.imaceliac.com

April 11, 2011 at 9:05 PM  
Blogger Leah said...

My son has had Celiac since the age of 10 he is almost 18. One of his favorites is kinninnick foods. He loves their pizza crust and white bread check out there website. www.kinnikinnick.com

April 17, 2011 at 12:16 AM  
Blogger Tarynne said...

At Trader Joes, they carry Peanut Butter that is called Better 'n Peanut Butter. I read this when you posted it and I was just putting my PB back in the fridge when I saw it said Gluten Free!

This PB is DELICIOUS! We haven't bought reguar peanut butter in years. Hope she enjoys it!

April 21, 2011 at 2:27 AM  
Blogger Jessica B said...

My 4 year old son and I have celiac disease also. We love the Mi-Del brand Animal Cookies, Chebe pizza crusts (dry mix is cheaper), Udi's bread is top notch, and Tinkyada pasta is our go too. I think Trader Joe's rice pasta is Tinkyada and much cheaper. You can make a pasta salad and it doesn't even crumble over night while it sits in the fridge! Woodman's Market is our local grocery store that has the best GF sections we've seen. They are a midwest chain and if there is one nearby you need to check it out!

April 30, 2011 at 12:32 PM  
Blogger Moll Doll said...

I just wanted to tell you that, first, I LOVE your blog! I'm not sure how I even stumbled upon it but I'm so glad I did. Also, THIS post made me look more into Celiac Disease and, turns out, I have it! This post is saved in my Google Favorites list. Thank you!

May 17, 2011 at 3:41 AM  
Blogger The Three Vree's said...

Check out this website for GREAT gluten free ideas! glutenfreegood.blogspot.com

July 7, 2011 at 8:26 AM  

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