Turkey, like all meat, is naturally gluten free. Be aware of things that might have been added in processing. This article lists six companies that have affirmed that their products are totally OK for people who live gluten free.
Thanksgiving and Christmas meal plans are essentially the same, although most articles mention only one of the two holidays. You may have already read five-part article called “Your Gluten Free Holiday Dinner” which featured videos covering each the five major cooking tasks involved. You may wish to review those articles for last-minute Thanksgiving planning, and/or early Christmas ideas:
The cost of gluten free food can be real strain on the family budget.These three websites may be useful in keeping expenses under control:
~~~> Budget101.com. This not a gluten free web site so some of the recommendations might not apply to us, but everything is presented so clearly that this not be a problem. I especially like their section on home made food gifts.
People who living gluten free are often concerning about spending several days in a wheat-using home. Their hosts are equally uncomfortable. Here are three suggestions that may simplify things:
~~~> These four articles that address this question. Since the host-family almost certainly does not read this website regularly, it is will probably be best for you to forward the links to them:
If this is your first gluten free holiday season, I wish you well. You will face challenges! Hopefully these ideas will help you meet them successfully.
Remember that many of the people at your holiday meal will be hearing about celiac disease and the gluten free diet for the first time.
Ready-to-eat cranberry sauce is available. Ocean Spray states that its cranberry sauce is gluten free but also admits that it accepts the providers statement without doing any further testing. Cranberries are naturally gluten free, of course, and it is easy to do-it-yourself. Your holiday cranberry sauce will be safer and tastier than any sauce from a can.
Turkey is most common holiday main course, but your meal might feature ham, duck, or goose. Have a look at these videos before you make your final decision about your main course. After you’ve made your decision,
The terms ‘gluten free dressing’ and ‘gluten free stuffing’ are often used interchangeably, but to me there is a great difference. ‘Stuffing’ is what we cook inside the bird and ‘dressing’ is prepared separately. Sounds obvious to me!
Turkey is the traditional holiday feast, so that will be the first article in my series about preparing a holiday feast. Turkey is naturally gluten free as long as you check to be sure that nothing has been added to make the turkey self-basting (or for any other reason).
I’ll have plenty of occasions to ask questions about gluten free food during the upcoming holiday seasons. I can’t avoid asking the questions, of course, but I would like to ask them without making people feel like I am giving them the third degree. I recently discovered a “script” that will help me do this — a set of very specific tactfully-worded questions that will elicit specific answers but are written tactfully.
Despite many requests, I do not attempt to provide information about gluten free living in Canada. The two nations are strikingly similar in so many ways, but just different enough that a one-man operation like mine can’t keep up with both countries.
Trunk-or-treat is a Halloween event that helps children (gluten free and otherwise) to avoid the hassles and possible dangers involved in traditional trick-or-treat. The idea is that caring adults get together in a parking lot (often at a church or school) and invite costumed children to visit that parking lot to receive treats. Parents know what they need to know to keep their children safe. Wheat-eating children and their parents may be very impressed when they collect a basket full of delicious gluten free treats.
Cottage cheese is probably gluten free. The he Daisy Brands website declares that its cottage cheese is ‘safe’. Organic Valley asserts basically the same thing, but does point out one possible problem. This more general article asserts that cottage cheese is “for the most part safe”. One point in favor of cottage cheese is that cheese slicers — a possible source of cross contamination — are not involved in manufacturing or consuming cottage cheese.
Many factors effect our choice of restaurants.
Restaurants with gluten free menus are relatively easy to find these days. The ‘trick’ is to find not only menus that inspire our confidence, but management and food service personnel that make us feel safe and comfortable and convinced that we will enjoy great food in a gluten free environment.
Dealing with our gluten free lifestyle takes time and careful thought. For some of us, the current government shutdown is providing time for reflection. Others need to work very hard to find that time. Here are some books that have helped me focus my mind on my gluten free situation. I’ve reviewed these books before. I’ll make a few comments and then link you to the articles that I have already written about them.
Pizza Fusion serves people living gluten free in Colorado, Florida, Ohio, North Carolina, and New Jersey. I never saw the term ‘celiac disease’ when checking out this website. They did talk about gluten intolerance, stating that a gluten free crust was available, mentioned the one pizza topping that was off-limits for us.
Chili’s Grill and Bar serves gluten free meals in all parts of the country. Click here for locations. The gluten free menu is updated monthly as are all the special menus. Note that the gluten free menu is at the bottom of a very long page. Much scrolling-down will be required.
Spaghetti is not normally gluten free, but The Old Spaghetti Factory does a great job serving the gluten free community. (I can personally vouch for this.) To find a convenient location, click here and insert your ZIP code. If you’re just curious about how the system works, try it using my ZIP code: 2774.
Sugar is naturally gluten free, and The Sugar Association assures us that “all sugar products in the marketplace differ only in crystal size or molasses content. Molasses adds both color and flavor …”
Gluten free Girl Scout Cookies will be available in some parts of the country during this year’s annual sales event. ABC bakers, one of the companies providing the cookies announces that these chocolate chip cookies will test out at less than five parts-per-million gluten.
The major producers of mustard and ketchup, French’s and Heinz, state in the FAQ sections of their website that these products are gluten free. It is possible to find mustard and ketchup contaminated by soy sauce or vinegar, but everything should be OK if you stick with these two brands.
A gluten free Halloween can be a real challenge, especially when it involves people who live gluten free. But the challenge can be met. The gluten free zombies can be defeated. There are four challenges here:
identifying gluten free candy and other goodies.
Tahini, a paste made from crushed sesame seeds (think peanut butter) is naturally gluten free. Arrowhead Mills produces a version certified to contain fewer than 5 parts-per-million gluten.
Tahini can be used in many different ways. Try these recipe for ‘cauliflower with tahini sauce‘ (this recipe is also dairy free), ‘tahini and sesame cookies‘ (recipe provided by Whole Foods), or ‘quinoa salad with tahini dressing‘.
Safeway supports its customers who live gluten free by using shelf tags (which Safeway calls ‘attribute tags‘) to identify appropriate foods. Gluten free foods have a red label. Safeway followers the manufacturers’ recommendation when tagging food gluten free.
Safeway asks you to insert a ZIP code to find an convenient location. If you are experimenting, you may wish to use my ZIP code (97224) to see how the system works.
Martin’s Supermarkets serve people who live gluten free in Indiana and Michigan.
Omission Beer is brewed from barley and then processed to test out well-below the 20 parts-per-million. Does that mean that it ‘safe’ and therefore deserves the label ‘gluten free’? For now, at least, the FDA’s answer is ‘No’. Apparently, the government trusts the testing process to detect the presence of gluten. However, the FDA does not trust the testing process to tell us whether gluten has been removed or rendered harmless.
Celiac disease and gluten intolerance do not have a lighter side. We all know that, but we also know that our only options are to laugh or cry. I choose to laugh and to share some laugh-inducing items I have found on the internet.
These people poked loving fun at people who live gluten free and also at the people who make our lives unbearable if we allow them to do so. These cleverly-captioned photos and cartoons appeared on Pinterest.
Fred Meyer provides many options for the gluten free shopper. You’ll need to enter a ZIP code to locate a specific store. If you are ‘just browsing’ use my ZIP code, 97224, to activate the system. If you are looking for bargains, click here to read their weekly ads or click here to look at the their coupons.
The Abuelos restaurant chain presents itself as “the taste of Mexico” , and has a ‘gluten sensitive menu. (Is that the same as a ‘gluten free menu’?) They serve the gluten free communities in Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Wisconsin.
Whole Foods offers a wide variety of gluten free products, gluten free food lists customized for use in specific stores or groups of stores, and a resource called ‘The Gluten Free Bakehouse‘ which provides ‘safe’ products for all the stores in this nationwide chain.
Oktoberfest is the ultimate celebration of German food and beer. I lived in Germany for 22 years and I am reasonably sure that Oktoberfest’ s food and drink was at least partial responsible for aggravating my then-undiagnosed celiac disease. This year as every year, I will be attempting to reproduce the menu (but not the stomach distress) of the real-thing.
“Are grits gluten free?“ is the most popular question received by this web site. Grits are gluten free, but there are made from corn, thus making them off-limits to many of us. The good news is that grits can also be made with amaranth, buckwheat, millet, soy, teff, or quinoa. Here are some links that may be of value to you.