Sep
08

Gluten-Free Mexican Food — Menu Plan Sept. 8

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GFWorldMexicoIt’s another week of the Gluten-Free Menu Swap. This week’s Tastes of the World theme is Mexican Meals. 

I love Mexican food. I think I could eat it everyday… and it looks like I just might this week. Of course, my idea of Mexican food includes a lot of variety that isn’t exactly traditional Mexican food. But the meals will typically include at least a few of these ingredients: corn, corn tortillas, tomatoes, salsa, onion, cumin, coriander, cilantro, chiles, peppers, beans, avocado, and lime.

Here are just some of my family’s yummy favorites:

Don’t forget to check below our menu for more gluten-free menus, meals, and ideas for Mexican Gluten-Free Meals.

Celiac Family’s Menu This Week:

Cilantro Rice

Cilantro Rice

Pork Chops w/Black Beans

Pork Chops w/Black Beans

Avocado Salsa

Avocado Salsa

Monday – Rotisserie Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, Sautéed Garlic Spinach

Tuesday – Chicken Taquitos made with Shredded Mexican ChickenCilantro Rice, Guacamole

Wednesday – Fajitas with skirt steak, onions and peppers, leftover rice

Thursday – Pork Chops with Black Beans, Mashed Potatoes, Broccoli

Friday – Fish Tacos, Avocado Salsa

Saturday – Mexican Black Bean Chili, Cornbread

Sunday – Fried Chicken, Watermelon, and Carrots (as requested by my daughter)

Gluten Free Menu Swap Roundup

The Girl Who Couldn’t Eat Anything: eating without Gluten, Dairy, Peanuts, Oats, or Meat
Elisabeth says she likes to do Freezer Burritos and Nachos for quick dinners at her house. Also on her menu this week is Chicken or Fish Nuggets, Simple Corn Soup, Tuna Apple Salad, Avocado Salad, Creamy Raspberry Vanilla Smoothie with popcorn, and Pizza with Salad.

The Gluten Free Week: Gluten-Free
Lori has lots of Tex-Mex and Cal-Mex recipes to share this week: TacosChicken Tortilla SoupFajitasFish TacosBaked Chicken Taquitos, and Chili Nachos. She’s also trying a couple new recipes this week for  Oaxacan Grilled Shrimp and Pollo Pibel.

Check back later to see who else may be sharing their gluten-free menus, recipe links, and ideas for Mexican Meals this week.

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.
  • Join us again next week at CeliacFamily for sharing gluten-free menus and ideas for Gluten-Free Mexican Dinners.
  • The Gluten-Free Menu Swap Page has 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?

  • smallbuttonLaura at OrgJunkie.com 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
Comments (3)
Sep
04

Cookbook Review: “Gluten-Free Made Easy”

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I was recently contacted by Christi Silbaugh, one of the authors of “Gluten-Free Made Easy” and asked if I would review her new gluten-free cookbook. Just reading the title “Gluten-Free made easy” made me anxious to read it and give some of the recipes a try.

At First Glance.
This cookbook is a paperback book with at least a dozen gluten-free recipes in each category of Breakfast, Finger Foods, Pasta and Pizza, Main Dishes, Sides and Sauces, Soups and Salads, Breads, and Desserts. There are plenty of recipes to tempt your taste buds.

This book begins with lots of good information and resources about being gluten-free: answers to common questions, flour blends and cake mixes, easy ingredient substitutions, favorite products, where to shop, etc.

The cookbook is well-organized and features many recipes with full-page, 4-color photographs. Sometimes I receive cookbooks to review, and only find a few recipes that I really want to try. Not so with this cookbook. It is full of gluten-free recipes for everyday eating. Many of the recipes have few ingredients and simple instructions. Love that!

The Recipes.

  • The Mole Chicken was a nice change for our family. It wasn’t too spicy, and we enjoyed the chocolate flavor.
  • The Double Crunch Honey Garlic Chicken was deliciously crisp and moist.
  • Pollo Pasta Primavera and Linguine Carbonara are on our menu this week. Can’t wait to try them!
  • Simple Spanish Rice and Mexican Black Bean Chili will be on our menu next week.
  • My kids have requested Cinnamon and Sugar Donut Holes and Banana Snickerdoodle Muffins, so we’ll be making them soon, too!

There are several recipes in this cookbook that are similar to our own family favorites, so I know we’ll enjoy the many new ones we find in the book, too.

The Tips.
I love all the tips scattered through the book: Make Your Own Pancake Mix, Snacks in a Snap, Lunch Box ideas, Purchase or Prepare (tips for saving time and money), Making Treats for a Gluten-Free Friend, and more.

Overall.
There are a lot of great gluten-free recipes in this book! It would be a great cookbook for anyone on a gluten-free diet. And, it gives a lot of information that would be helpful to someone new to the diet, as well as someone who wants to cook for their gluten-free friends and family members. The only downside for me, is that a lot of the recipes call for dairy — butter, cream, milk, etc. — which my body can’t tolerate anymore. Of course, I’ve gotten pretty good at making substitutions, but it would be nice to have recipes that had already been tested with dairy-free alternatives.

Where to Find It.
Gluten-Free-Made-Easy-blog-tour

 

Categories : Books, Product Advisory
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Sep
01

Gluten-Free Italian Food — Menu Plan Sept. 1

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GFWorldItalyThis month at the Gluten-Free Menu Swap, we’re going to explore different Tastes of the World. This week’s theme starts with Italian Meals. I’m not Italian, so my version of Italian food may be more American than Italian, but here’s what it means to me:

Pasta. That’s the first thing I think about when I think of Italian food. Fortunately there are a lot of options for gluten-free pasta these days. We can find several different shapes of gluten-free pastas at our grocery stores, Target, Walmart, and even Amazon.

You just need to decide which ones work best for your recipes. Some are made from corn, some with quinoa, some with rice, and other grains. I find that the pastas with a mix of flours is the most versatile, but you may have to try a few before you find what works (and tastes) best for your family. Nicole at Gluten-Free on a Shoestring says she knows the right way to boil gluten-free pasta. Follow her directions to cook your pasta perfectly al dente and not sticky, gummy, or crunchy.

If you’ve got the time and desire, you can also make your own gluten-free pasta. Try these recipes by Jamie Oliver, King Arthur Flour, Nurture My Gut (almond flour), Gluten-Free on a Shoestring (using a pasta machine), and Bob’s Red Mill.

Tomato, Basil, Oregano, and Garlic. The second thing I think about when I think of Italian food is the flavor these add to dishes. Whether on pasta, bruschetta, or meat, each ingredient adds great flavor to your meals.

EVOO. Don’t forget the Extra Virgin Olive Oil! Used in cooking everything, isn’t it? Toss your pasta in it. Brush your bread with it. Pan-fry meats with it. Saute your vegetables with it. And use it to make yummy salad dressings!

This week, I’m trying some new Italian recipes, which you’ll find in my menu below. Here are a few additional recipes I have that I would consider to be inspired by Italian cooking and recipes:

Don’t forget to check below our menu for more gluten-free menus, meals, and ideas for Italian Gluten-Free Meals.

Celiac Family’s Menu This Week:

Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Simple Asparagus

Simple Asparagus

Wild Rice Salad

Wild Rice Salad

MondayItalian Baked Tilapia (using gluten-free bread crumbs and Italian dressing), spaghetti squash and spinach

Tuesday – leftovers

Wednesday – Pulled Pork Sandwiches, Fried Potato Balls, Green Beans

Thursday – Pollo Pasta Primavera from Gluten-Free Made Easy (penne pasta with shredded chicken and fresh tomatoes and basil), Simple Asparagus

Friday – Hamburgers, Sweet Potato Fries, Roasted Broccoli

Saturday – Spaghetti Carbonara (also from Gluten-Free Made Easy), Tossed Green Salad

Sunday – Bacon-wrapped Chicken, Wild Rice Salad with Parmesan Dressing, toasted garlic bread

Gluten Free Menu Swap Roundup

The Gluten Free Week: Gluten-Free
Lori has Italian meals planned for everyday this week! And, I love the variety she’s chosen. Spaghetti and Meatballs start the week for her. Lori says she likes to use Tinkyada’s brown rice pasta, and makes the meatballs without breadcrumbs. Next, she’ll be making Minestrone Soup in the crock pot, Chicken Cacciatore, Egg Plant Rolls, and Mediterranean Salmon Salad. She’ll finish up this Italian week with a gluten-free pizza. Delizioso!

The Girl Who Couldn’t Eat Anything: eating without Gluten, Dairy, Peanuts, Oats, or Meat
Elisabeth likes to make spaghetti and meatballs at her house. She also enjoys lasagna with cashew ricotta and mushroom caps to make it work for her restricted diet. Other meals at her house this week include Irresistible Grilled Shrimp, Chili with Cornbread, Chef Salad, Avocado Salad, Peachy Keen Smoothie, Veggie Soup, and Pizza.

The Peaceful Mom: Simple Gluten-Free Menu
I don’t see Italian meals on Kimberlee’s menu this week. Instead, I see Tex-Mex meals: Slow Cooker Chipotle ChiliRanch Chicken CasseroleChili Cheese Fries, and Oven-baked Tacos. And don’t forget to check out her Crustless Quiche, Cheeseburgers, and Blueberry Pancakes.

Check back later to see who else may be sharing their gluten-free menus, recipe links, and ideas for Italian Meals.

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.
  • Join us again next week at CeliacFamily for sharing gluten-free menus and ideas for Gluten-Free Mexican Dinners.
  • The Gluten-Free Menu Swap Page has 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?

  • smallbuttonLaura at OrgJunkie.com 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
Comments (2)
Aug
27

Gluten-Free Cashew Cherry Chocolate Energy Snack Bars Recipe

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snackbarThere are lots of tasty gluten-free snack bars on the market these days. But, if you don’t like the price, or the extra ingredients that may be in them, consider making your own.

With six simple ingredients, this recipe is easy to adjust to your own taste. I just used up what we had in our pantry. The whole family ate these up in no time. (Chocolate gets them every time!)

Enjoy these for a snack, a quick breakfast on-the-go, a protein burst after school, or even a sweet treat.

Cashew Cherry Chocolate Snack Bars

Ingredients:

3/4 Cup Almond Butter (or other nut butter of your choice)
3/4 Cup Honey (or agave)
1-1/2 Cup Cashews (I used roasted but not salted.)
1 Cup Dried Cherries
4 to 5 Cups Gluten-Free Crispy Rice Cereal (Kellogg’s GF Erewhon’s Cereal or EnviroKidz)
3/4 Cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chunks (Use Enjoy Life to make it dairy-free.)

Directions:

  1. Combine the almond butter and honey together in a pot over medium heat on the stove. Stir until well blended. Take off the heat and let it cool while you continue with the recipe.
  2. Line a 9 x 13 pan with parchment paper. It doesn’t need to be perfectly lined, it just makes shaping the bars and removing the bars from the pan easier. You can also use a jelly roll pan, or simply a sheet of parchment paper on the counter.
  3. Place the cashews and dried cherries in a food processor, and give it a whirl until they are chopped into pieces. (Or get out a knife and cutting board, and chop by hand.) Pour it all into a large bowl.
  4. Add the cereal and chocolate chunks to the large bowl of ingredients. Then, pour the nut butter/honey mixture on top of the ingredients in the large bowl. Use a spatula to mix all the ingredients together. (If the honey mixture is hot it will melt the chocolate. If you want the chocolate chips to remain as chips, make sure the honey mixture has had enough time to cool.)
  5. Press the mixture into the lined 9 x 13 pan with a spatula, or use a sheet of parchment or wax paper on top and press it with your hands.
  6. Place in the freezer for 15 minutes, or place in the refrigerator for an hour to set.
  7. Once set, lift the bars out of the pan using the parchment paper and place on a cutting board. Use a pizza cutter or large knife to cut the bars into the size and shape you want. Makes 18-24 depending on how you cut them.
  8. To store these yummy treats, wrap the bars in plastic wrap or place in a sealed container. They don’t last longer than a week or two at our house on the counter. If you plan to keep them longer, you may want to store in the refrigerator.

Additional Notes:

  • I’ve made these with a variety of ingredients: almonds, dates, pistachios, hazelnuts, etc. Choose your favorites or try a mix of nuts and dried fruit. Macadamia nuts with dried apricots is yummy! I’m trying Sunbutter next.
  • Don’t be afraid to press these into the pan very firmly. They will stay together better if you do.
  • I like to use the mega chocolate chunks because the warm almond butter and honey will partially melt them (as in the picture above).

This post is linked to Gluten-Free Wednesdays, where you’ll find more ideas for eating gluten-free!

Comments (4)
Aug
25

Back to School with Quick and Easy Gluten-Free Meals — Menu Plan Aug. 25

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BacktoSchooldinner2We’re on our final week of Back-to-School Meal Planning. This week’s theme is Quick and Easy Gluten-Free Meals for those busy school (and work) nights.

Quick and easy meals at our house start with leftovers. That means checking the refrigerator for what didn’t get eaten the week before. Our family loves to be able to pick out their favorites and put them together how they want.

After clearing out the leftovers, it’s time for meal planning. Check your calendar for those really busy nights, and decide how you’re going to make it easy on yourself:

  • Prepare as much of the meal in advance — chop veggies, mix spices, thaw meat, etc.
  • Frozen Meals — Make double batches of dishes when you have the time, so you can put one in the freezer for those busy nights. Or, purchase ready-made frozen meals at the grocery store (GF pizza, burritos, casseroles, etc.).
  • Slow-Cooker Meals — Easy, quick prep in the morning is all you need for a ready-made dinner in the evening.
  • Picnic Foods — Sandwiches or lunchmeat, raw fruits and vegetables, cheese, crackers, salads, etc.
  • Quick and Easy Breakfast foods for dinner — Pancakes, bacon, and eggs all cook up very quickly, and fill you up, too.
  • Restaurants — Pick up fast food or order ahead from your favorite restaurant and just pick up on your way home. Choose the restaurant carefully, so that it works for all your diet restrictions.
  • Grocery Stores Prepared Food — Pick up Salads, Roasted Chickens, etc. at your grocery store or local deli. Just be careful about ingredients and cross-contamination issues.
  • Make it easy. — Meals don’t have to be elaborate. Just because it has to be gluten-free, doesn’t mean it has to be difficult. Simple meat and veggies is just fine for a safe, nutritious, and tasty meal.

***If meal planning isn’t your thing, or you just want a change, you may want to consider eMeals, a meal planning service. eMeals just announced that they are offering a new 30-Minute Meal Plan to keep meal prep to less than 30 minutes. They have other plans, too: Gluten-Free, Paleo, Kid-Friendly, Diabetic, etc. Through the end of August, Save 20% with code SCHOOL on any eMeals Meal Plan.***

What is your family’s favorite quick and easy meals? Don’t forget to check below our menu for more gluten-free menus, meals, and ideas for Quick and Easy Gluten-Free Meals.

Celiac Family’s Quick and Easy Menu This Week:

Nachos with Guacamole

Nachos with Guacamole

Rainbow Apple Salad

Rainbow Apple Salad

Gluten-Free Pancakes

Gluten-Free Pancakes

Monday – Allergen-Free Rotisserie Chicken (picking up from Sam’s Club), Mashed Potatoes (potatoes cooked in the morning for final prep in the evening), Roasted Broccoli (cut up in morning or purchased florets already chopped)

Tuesday – Chicken Nachos (Put chicken in slow-cooker so it’s ready to go at dinner time.), Guacamole (fast recipe with help from Frontera’s mix)

Wednesday – Frozen Pizza (Daiya pizza for dairy-free and Freschetta for the real-cheese eaters), Rainbow Apple Salad (made quickly while pizza is baking)

Thursday – Pancakes (using Namaste Pancake Mix), Bacon, Tropical Fruit Salad

Friday – Frozen Gluten-Free Battered Fish (StarFish brand), Sweet Potato Fries (Ore-Ida brand), Green Peas

Saturday – Grilled Flank Steak (marinating in the morning), Broccoli Salad, Rice Pilaf

Sunday – Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork, Corn on the Cob, leftover veggies or salads

Gluten Free Menu Swap Roundup

The Gluten Free Week: Gluten-Free
Find new quick gluten-free dinner ideas on Pinterest: Lori’s own Pinterest board of Gluten-Free Dinners and Lynn’s Kitchen Adventures – Quick and Easy Dinner Ideas. Lori’s menu this week is all about quick and easy…and looks yummy, too! Chicken and Spinach QuesadillasBok Choy Stir FrySlow Cooker Pulled Pork TenderloinTurkey and Squash PastaLentil Soup, and Pulled Pork Sandwiches.

The Peaceful Mom: Simple Gluten-Free Menu
Kimberlee has a few meals planned for the week that I would consider quick and easy: Spicy Chicken Thighs (easy prep but hour to cook), Pizza with pre-made gluten-free crust, and Turkey Pepper Jack Grilled Cheese.  The remaining meals may take a little more prep time: Meatloaf, Pasta Alfredo, Steak and Peppers, and Taco Salad.

The Girl Who Couldn’t Eat Anything: eating without Gluten, Dairy, Peanuts, Oats, or Meat
Elisabeth is celebrating her birthday this week! Easy meals for a birthday week sounds like a great plan. :) She’s been working on doing a lot of the prep work for cooking in advance of evening meals. Vegan Nachos, gluten-Free Pumpkin Waffles, Pintos and Rice, Fish in a Pan with Potatoes, Tuna Fish Sandwiches, Pumpkin smoothie with popcorn, and Pizza.

Check back later to see who else will be sharing their gluten-free menus, recipe links, and ideas for Quick and Easy Meals.

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.
  • Join us again next week at CeliacFamily for sharing gluten-free menus and ideas for Gluten-Free Italian Dinners.
  • The Gluten-Free Menu Swap Page has 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?

  • smallbuttonLaura at OrgJunkie.com 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
Comments (3)