Archive for December, 2011


Gluten-Free Holiday Recipes Galore

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Update: I hope everyone is enjoying the holiday season! I took some time to update the Holiday Recipe Events below with all the links to recipes and roundups, so browse through them for some great gluten-free recipes. You may find just the recipe you want for  some last-minute ideas for Christmas, or maybe you’re thinking ahead to New Year celebrations.??

I also want to mention another gluten-free event that I completely neglected (unintentionally) – Jules’s Gluten-Free Cookie Swap. I’m not very good about following Facebook, but I finally got a chance to look at it. Wow! It has more than 100 gluten-free cookie recipes posted. You don’t want to leave this off your list of recipes to peruse. And maybe you’ll share your own favorite cookie recipe!

However you are spending the start of the winter season, I send you warm wishes to you and yours. I hope you have a happy, healthy, gluten-free holiday!


Three online events are going on this season to help you enjoy your holidays gluten free. I’ve already shared with you the December Sanity Challenge. Here are two events that are more specific to gluten-free recipes. The events have already started, but don’t let that stop you from checking them out. New gluten-free recipes are being posted everyday by bloggers wanting to share their healthy ideas with you. And, there are still prizes to win, too!

A Gluten-Free Holiday

This weekly themed link-up event is taking place on Thursdays (November through December) and includes a cookbook give-away every week.

Share your own favorite gluten-free holiday dishes and browse through new gluten-free recipes to add to your menu.

Nov. 3rd – Healthier Through the Holidays at Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free
Nov. 10th – Thanksgiving Favorites at Cook It Allergy Free
Nov. 17th – Edible Gifts at Taste at Tasty Eats at Home
Dec. 1st – Holiday Entrees & Sides Dishes at Daily Bites
Dec. 8th – Holiday Breakfast & Brunch at Diet, Dessert, and Dogs
Dec. 15th – Holiday Desserts at She Let Them Eat Cake


Home for the Holidays

This daily event is taking place through December 23, and features holiday recipes from 25 different bloggers. Shirley at gluten free easily gathered almost 100 items to give away throughout the event.

The prizes include gluten-free cookbooks, e-books, magazine subscriptions, applications, and a testing kit. The final top three prizes will be a VitaMix blender, $150 shopping spree at Free From Gluten, and a giveaway package from Caveman Cookies.

Check out all the details in the event announcement from Shirley.

Nov. 28– Nutmeg Shortbread Flats (Gluten-Free) at gfe–gluten free easily
Nov. 29– Toffee (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free) at The WHOLE Gang
Nov. 30– Fritters/Förtchens/Futtjens/Ferdons (Gluten-Free) at Adventures of a Gluten-Free Mom
Dec. 1– Cut-out Gingerbread Cookies (Gluten-Free) at The Whole Life Nutrition Kitchen
Dec. 2– Chocolate Pecan “Toll House” Pie (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free) at And Love it, Too!
Dec. 3– Paleo Monkey Bread (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free) at Paleo Parents
Dec. 4– Candy Cane Ice Cream (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free) at She Let Them Eat Cake
Dec. 5– Red Chile Enchilada Casserole (Gluten-Free) at Gluten Free For Good
Dec. 6– Cinnamon Bun Cake (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free) at Cook IT Allergy Free
Dec. 7– Chocolate Pomegranate Clusters (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Soy-Free, Vegan, Corn-Free)at Lexie’s Kitchen
Dec. 8– Chocolate & Cinnamon Babka Bread (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free) at Real Sustenance
Dec. 9– Gingerbread Apple Crisp (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free) at Elana’s Pantry
Dec. 10– Peanut Butter Pie with a Double Chocolate Crust (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free) at The Spunky Coconut
Dec. 11– Chocolate Peppermint Truffles (Anti-Candida, Sugar-Free, Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Vegan) at Diet, Dessert and Dogs
Dec. 12–  Cream Cheese Cookies (Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, Vegan) at The Daily Dietribe
Dec. 13– Pumpkin Chocolate Cookies (Gluten-Free, Vegan) at Gluten Free by Nature
Dec. 14– Cinnamon Sticky Rolls (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Vegan, Oven or Crock Pot Method) at Jules Speaks Gluten Free
Dec. 15– Pine Nut Cookies (Gluten-Free) at Silvana’s Kitchen (and Easy Eats)
Dec. 16– Christmas Breakfast Casserole (Gluten-Free) at Gluten-Free Cat
Dec. 17– Baked Eggs Florentine (Gluten-Free) at Simply…Gluten Free
Dec. 18– Holiday Pumpkin Bread (Gluten-Free, Vegan) at Alisa Cooks
Dec. 19– Cinnamon Rolls (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free) at The Gluten-Free Homemaker
Dec. 20– Magical Seven-Layer Bars (Vegan, Soy-Free, Nut-Free, Casein-Free) at Gluten Free Gigi
Dec. 21– Cranberry White Chocolate Chunk Cookies (Gluten-Free) at Z’s Cup of Tea
Dec. 22– Chocolate Silk Pie with Honey Whipped Cream (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Soy-Free, Grain-Free) at Lillian’s Test Kitchen
Dec. 23— Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free) at gfe—gluten free easily

Categories : Events, Newsworthy
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This week only, through Sunday, December 25, Gluten-Free Saver has partnered with Van’s Natural Foods to raise money to send gluten-free kids to a summer camp next year.

The money collected will be used for scholarships for kids to attend a gluten-free summer camp hosted by the Celiac Disease Foundation next summer in San Bernardino, California. The summer camp will be held from July 30 to August 3, 2012. It’s open to all kids between the ages of 7 and 15 who are gluten-intolerant or gluten-sensitive. The kids do not need to have an official diagnosis of celiac disease, only the need to be gluten free.

Van’s is matching all donations this week up to $1,000! Please join me this week in donating to the cause. Even a small donation of $2 will add $4 dollars to the scholarships. If you are feeling generous this holiday season, feel free to contribute as much as you’d like.

You can find more details on this one-week fundraiser at Gluten-Free Saver.


Categories : Events, Newsworthy
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Time is almost up! Are you enjoying the holidays? This week’s theme for the Gluten-Free Menu Swap is Holiday Favorites. Will you be making all your favorite holiday dishes this year? To be honest, I’m not sure what we’re doing yet. We don’t usually have a formal dinner with the family. Instead, we choose to fix finger foods and appetizers for Christmas Day. It works out great to just graze and nibble on our favorites in between opening presents and playing with our new toys.

Here are a few of our favorites that I’m considering:

Don’t forget to check out the Gluten-Free Menu Swap roundup below. I’m sure there will be more favorite holiday recipes linked up to inspire your own menu this week.

Celiac Family’s Menu This Week:

When I sat down to figure out what to eat for dinner this week, I had a lot of trouble deciding what to fix. I wanted it to satisfy everyone’s taste buds, but I also wanted to keep it quick and easy. I still have plenty of Christmas activities to enjoy this week: school holiday parties, last-minute shopping, wrapping presents, more baking, etc. Since I cook pretty quick and easy most nights, I wasn’t sure how I was going to make this even easier but I think I got it figured out for at least  a few days. 🙂

 Monday – Chicken Tacos. This slow-cooked chicken makes it easy to pull together a meal quickly, and is always a family favorite.

TuesdayBell & Evans gluten-free chicken tenders, served with corn and broccoli

Wednesday – Hamburgers, sweet potato fries, and peas

Thursday – Eating out

FridayChicken Enchilada Soup – I’ve got the soup base in the freezer, just need to thaw it and add leftover chicken from Monday.

Saturday – Prime Rib, Mashed Potatoes, Broccoli Casserole, Chocolate Soufflé

Sunday – Merry Christmas!  I hope you, too, will be enjoying some of your favorite holiday dishes gluten free!

Gluten Free Menu Swap Roundup

Emily at Our Frugal Happy Life is doing lots of baking this week. Just look at all the yummy goodness: Cream Wafers, Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies, Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins, dinner rolls, and more. She also has Italian Shepherd’s Pie, Fiesta Chicken with Rice, and Ham on her menu plan. Add in a couple Advent dinners at church, and you can see she has a busy week ahead of her.

Lisa at Extraordinary Life has been making gingerbread men cookies and butter cookies that have been a big hit at school. She has lots of great meals on her menu this week including Meatloaf, Mac ‘n Cheese, Ham with Pineapple Gravy, Turkey, Mashed Potatoes and Green Bean Casserole. Looks like a happy holiday at her house. Now, she just needs to figure out some craft ideas to keep the kids busy while they’re out of school.

Renee at Beyond Rice and Tofu is creating new holiday traditions with her husband since they are away from family this year. So, they are making Green Chile and Cheese Tamales for Christmas Eve and Spring Rolls for Christmas Day. Also on her menu this week is Indian-Spiced Roasted Squash Soup, Red Beans and Rice, and Chickpea and Spinach Curry. I love the variety and the local flavor of New Mexico that she’s incorporated into their menu.

Angela of Angela’s Kitchen posted her menu at Once A Month Mom this week. Her family’s holiday favorites revolve around Swedish traditions that include lingonberries, gluten-free Lefse, potato pudding, rice pudding, and her grandmother’s Swedish rye bread. Angela has lots of baking and cooking for the rest of the week, too! Cookies, pizza muffins, and pizza baked into holiday shapes. Other meals this week include Chicken with Cauliflower and Apples, Fish Tacos, Pumpkin and Pork Chili, and Slow Cooker Black Bean Salsa Chicken.

Wendy at Celiacs in the House is making their family’s favorite Brussels sprouts with a garlic cream sauce for the holidays. Her week’s menu starts out heavy on the vegetarian meals (Black Bean Soup, Szechuan Meatballs with LoMein, Blackstrap Beans on Potatoes) in order to prepare for the feasting on Christmas Eve (Sirloin with Balsamic Roasted Vegetables) and Christmas Day (Ham, mashed potatoes, and candied yams).

Thanks to everyone for joining the GF Menu Swap this week. Hope you all have Happy Holidays!  Next week’s menu swap will be at Angela’s Kitchen with the theme of “New Things.”

Want to join Gluten-Free Menu Swap?

  • For this week’s roundup, email your menu link to celiacfamily[AT]gmail[DOT]com. Or, simply put your menu link in the comments below.
  • Next week’s roundup will be Angela’s Kitchen with the theme of “New Things.” We’d love to hear about your efforts to try something new in the kitchen or maybe taking an old favorite and doing something new with it.
  • I’ve updated the Gluten-Free Menu Swap Page with the current schedule of themes and hosts. If you’d like to host a future week, please send me an email (celiacfamily[AT]gmail[DOT]com) with your preferred date and theme.

Need more menu ideas?

  • Laura at hosts Menu Plan Monday every week. You’ll find links to hundreds of meal plans (not necessarily gluten-free) there.
  • Or, check out some of my past menu plans.


Categories : Menu Plan
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Menu Plan December 12 – Citrus

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This week’s Gluten-Free Menu Swap is being hosted by Cheryl at Gluten Free Goodness, and the theme is Citrus.

Great! I’m using it as inspiration to accomplish three things:

  • Use up some limes and lemons that have been sitting around and need to be eaten.
  • Boost up our immune systems with some extra vitamin C. I’m going to pick up some clementines at the store this week to get a little more into our meals.
  • Drink more water. With the weather getting colder and drier, I’ll encourage some extra hydration and add slices of lemon to our water.


Cilantro Lime Shrimp

Marinated Flank Steak

Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork

Celiac Family’s Menu This Week:

Monday – Quick and Easy Cilantro Lime Shrimp over Rice Noodles and Broccoli

Tuesday – Flank Steak served with Spinach Salad with Clementines

Wednesday – Socca Pizza served with leftover spinach salad

ThursdayLemon Chicken Thighs served with rice and green beans

FridayPulled Pork Sandwiches with Kale Chips and Pineapple

Saturday – Chili with Cornbread

Sunday – Leftover Buffet

Gluten Free Menu Swap Roundup

  • Thanks to Cheryl for hosting this week’s GF Menu Swap at Gluten Free Goodness with Citrus as the theme.
  • Next week’s roundup is being hosted here, at Celiac Family, with Holiday Favorites as the theme.
  • I’ve updated the Gluten-Free Menu Swap Page with the current schedule of themes and hosts. If you’d like to host a future week, please send me an email (celiacfamily[AT]gmail[DOT]com) with your preferred date and theme.

Need more menu ideas?

  • Laura at hosts Menu Plan Monday every week. You’ll find links to hundreds of meal plans (not necessarily gluten-free) there.
  • Or, check out some of my past menu plans.


Categories : Menu Plan
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My Attempt at Sanity in December

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December is a special month. A month to celebrate holidays, to reconnect with friends and family, a month of eating rich foods (or maybe fast foods), a month of shopping, a month of wrapping, shipping, laughs, hugs, little sleep, stress, and maybe loneliness, too. It’s a busy, fun, and stressful month. I look forward to it every year, and yet every year, I still feel unprepared for it. Every year, I think I’m going to get it all done sooner, so I can slow down and enjoy it more.

I have done pretty good so far this year at getting things done earlier than usual: Christmas cards ordered, photo gifts ordered, some gifts purchased, advent calendar activities planned, pictures with Santa done, Christmas tree up and decorated, some Christmas cookies made, our first holiday crafts made, and stockings are hung. That’s a lot for me to have done already in the first week of December. I feel good about that, but I still have a lot to do. And it seems that the earlier I start, the more time I have to do more activities. It can be a vicious cycle.

So, where does this leave me today? Well, my lack of attention to diet has let foods like chips, soda and dairy creep in. The dairy really had me down over the weekend. I’m also getting to bed late trying to prepare for the next day’s events. That all leaves me feeling tired and a little cranky. I need to turn this trend around before it gets worse, so I can really enjoy this special time.

Cheryl at Gluten Free Goodness inspired me to take control of the situation with her December Sanity Challenge event. She and three other bloggers are hosting the event to help themselves and others make reasonable goals for enjoying a happy, healthy, and sane holiday month. I may be getting a late start, but I’m in! Here are my goals for this month:

  1. Eat Healthy – I will continue to plan healthy meals every week. I will supplement them with healthy snacks and drinks – not soda and chips!
  2. More Exercise – I will try to get in a walk at least 3 times a week. If the weather is uninspiring, I’ll put in Just Dance 2 and dance away my stress. 🙂
  3. More Sleep – I often use my evening hours when the kids are in bed to get things done. Too often, I lose track of the time and end of going to bed too late. So, I’m setting an alarm clock to remind me to go to bed every night at 11.
  4. Ask for Help – I will recruit my kids to help me. They can stamp and seal envelopes on Christmas cards, water the Christmas tree, help put up decorations, help wrap presents, help make holiday goodies, etc. And if needed, I’ll get a babysitter to make use of weekend time.
  5. Make Time for Myself – I will slow down and relax by getting a massage or a pedicure, or both!
  6. Enjoy the Holidays – I will do some of the things I enjoy most during the holidays: attend the Nutcracker, listen to Christmas music, make crafts with the kids, bake holiday treats, etc.
  7. Hugs! – My all-time favorite stress-buster is getting hugs from my kids daily (or hourly if necessary). A good squeeze and smile from them can fix almost anything. 🙂

I’m printing out this list and posting it on my computer, my bathroom mirror, and my refrigerator. (I may need a few reminders.)

How is your December going? Need some inspiration or ideas for maintaining your own sanity? Join us!


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