Friday, April 30, 2010

Spanish Rice

Grocery shopping became such an event when first going gluten free. It takes time to stop and read ingredient labels before tossing them into the cart. I still find myself reading labels wherever I go and that is exactly how I spotted this product. This was a fun find today at Target. Since most prepackaged rices have wheat containing ingredients, you can imagine how exciting it was to find a gluten free spanish rice. And in the freezer section? I am looking forward to a yummy mexican dinner soon.

Thursday, April 29, 2010


We are often asked what we do for Brittany for the sacrament. We are LDS and bread is passed as part of the sacrament service. Of course it is not gluten free, but we still want her to be able to participate. I found some small condiment cups with lids at the party store. I break up a roll (In a pinch I've even used a waffle) and fill up a dozen cups at a time then stick them in the freezer. On a good Sunday morning we actually remember to grab a cup to take with us to church.

We try to sit in about the same bench each week so the deacons passing the sacrament can easily find us. Before the service starts we take our little cup of bread up to the table and the boys just place it on one of the trays. We are still a little concerned about cross contamination, so my husband or I open the cup and dump the bread into her hand. For the most part this has worked out well. I've read that some Celiac's just keep a small piece of bread in a sandwich baggie smashed into their scriptures and pull it out when the sacrament is passed. But I feel it is an important part of the process to have the bread on the tray to be blessed and passed.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Smart Ones

Gluten free eating is usually not convenient, but this changes things a bit. How convenient to be able to eat a delicious and healthy choice that is ready in minutes.

Gluten Free Smart Ones:
Broccoli and Cheddar Potatoes
Lemon Herb Chicken Piccata
Fiesta Chicken
Creamy Tuscan
Grilled Chicken in Garlic Herb Sauce
Homestyle Chicken
Chicken Santa Fe

Saturday, April 24, 2010

EnerG Tapioca Dinner Rolls

So if you've been eating GF for very long, you've all ready discovered that there is no substitute for bread. I used to bake a loaf of Bob's Red Mill GF Homemade Wonderful bread every Sunday night so that my daughter would be able to make sandwiches for the week. Honestly, I hated the way it smelled. I think it is the cider vinegar that sours my taste buds. So I was pleased to find these tapioca dinner rolls because they are quite delicious. They smell like honey and the texture seems right on. I buy 4 or 5 bags at a time and keep them in the freezer. We take one out and pop it in the microwave for 20 seconds before slicing. Brittany uses these rolls to make a sandwich nearly every day in her sack lunch. And, Amazon sells these and other gluten free items in bulk for a great price.

Friday, April 23, 2010

What's for Breakfast?

These are our favorite choices for breakfast cereals that are gluten free. I still have a few concerns about cross contamination, but the listed ingredients are GF. When we first started a gluten free diet we stayed away from anything processed in a facility with wheat. However, this can be very limiting and on the advice of our doctor we decided to try them for ourselves and eliminate if need be. So far, so good.

Honey Nut Kix
Honey Nut Chex
Rice Chex
Corn Chex
Cinnamon Chex
Chocolate Chex
Fruity Pebbles
Cocoa Pebbles

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Bacon Ranch Potato Salad

10 red potatoes
1 cup mayonnaise
1 packet Ranch Dressing Dry mix
1 bunch green onions
12 oz bacon

In large pot, boil red potatoes for 20-25 minutes. Then rinse under cold water and cut into one inch cubes. In a separate bowl mix mayonnaise,ranch dressing packet and green onions. Cook and crumble the bacon and set aside. Combine potatoes with dressing mixture and keep it in the fridge for 3 hours. Right before serving, add bacon and mix.

Serves 8-10

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

BBQ Chicken

These are 3 of my favorite ingredients for the best BBQ Chicken!

Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Mccormicks Grill Mates Montreal Chicken
Kraft BBQ Original

To start I marinate the chicken by drizzling on some olive oil and then sprinkling Mccormicks Grill Mates Montreal Chicken seasoning. Marinate for at least 30 minutes or overnight in the refrigerator. Fire up the grill, cook on medium-high and turn the chicken half way through cooking. When you turn the chicken, baste on some Kraft BBQ sauce. When chicken is cooked through flip them over and baste the underside. Enjoy!

Friday, April 16, 2010


Don't knock it until you've tried it...

This is the only way we eat popcorn at my house. It must be REAL butter and sprinkle on the Garlic Salt. It is so good!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


2 lbs ground beef
1 yellow onion chopped
2 cloves minced garlic
2 cans kidney beans
2 cans pinto beans
1 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tbsp chili powder
48 oz tomato juice
salt and pepper

Brown the ground beef then add onion and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Add cayenne pepper and chili powder. Add tomato juice and beans. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 30 minutes. Easy to make ahead and put in the crockpot on low for several hours.

I love seeing this food label on items at the grocery store. Makes it easy to see that it is gluten free!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Cheesy Chicken and Rice Casserole

1 can Health Valley Cream of Chicken Soup
1 can water
1/2 can uncooked regular long-grain white rice
2 cups fresh or frozen vegetables(broccoli is my favorite)
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 tsp black pepper
4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts (or 8 chicken tenders)
1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

1.Stir the soup, water, rice, vegetables and onion powder in a 9x13 baking dish.
2.Top with chicken. Season chicken with a little paprika. Cover with foil.
3.Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes or until done. Top with cheese, cover until melted.

This recipe was originally the campbells version, but when I substituted for GF cream of chicken I had to change the liquid amounts. I love the flavor of the onion powder in this dish. And it is a cinch to make. Prep time is literally 5 minutes. By the time your oven is preheated you are finished throwing it all into the pan. And I usually have most of these ingredients on hand.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Seven Layer Salad

1 large head of chopped Romain lettuce (or spinach)
1 sliced cucumber
1 diced tomato
1/2 diced red onion
1 cup frozen peas
1 lb fried bacon, crumbled
8 oz cheese

Start by seasoning a large glass bowl with olive oil and garlic salt. Layer in the following order:
red onion
spread approx 1/2 cup mayo on top
then layer with frozen peas
fried bacon

Cover and leave it in the fridge overnight. I usually make it the same day and refrigerate only a short time to let the flavors combine. Makes an impressive presentation. Toss right before serving.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Marinated Pork Chops

This recipe is from Moms & Meals. (Most recipes are not gluten free, but I wanted to give credit where credit is due.) I don't do pork that often because it always turns out so tough and chewy. But when I read over this recipe I decided to give it another try. I like the flavor combinations in the marinade and pork was on sale this week too!

1 Tbsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp ketchup
4-6 pork chops

Preheat oven to 350. In a small bowl, combine all ingredients. Place pork chops in a medium baking dish and spread with 1/2 of the sauce. Bake pork chops for 30 minutes in preheated oven. Turn and spread with remaining sauce. Continue baking for 30 minutes or until internal temperature of the chops has reached 160 degrees.

Since I was cooking 8 chops, I decided to double the marinade. I prepared it early in the afternoon and let the chops marinade in the fridge for a couple hours.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Broccoli Salad

Whenever my step-mom makes this salad, the bowl gets scraped clean. This is definitely a family favorite! Consider doubling the recipe if you are feeding a large group.

1 bunch broccoli(or more)chopped
1/2 c red onion chopped
1 c grated cheddar cheese
12 oz bacon

1/2 c mayonnaise
1/4 c sugar
1 Tbsp vinegar

Combine broccoli, onion,cheese and bacon in a bowl. Mix dressing in a separate bowl, toss into salad. Serves 8-10

Chex Muddy Buddies

9 cups Rice Chex®, Corn Chex® or Chocolate Chex® cereal (or combination)
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Peanut butter and chocolate are a favorite flavor combo, but peanut butter lovers can substitute peanut butter chips for the chocolate chips to intensify that flavor.

1. Into large bowl, measure cereal; set aside.
2. In 1-quart microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter uncovered on High 1 minute; stir. Microwave about 30 seconds longer or until mixture can be stirred smooth. Stir in vanilla. Pour mixture over cereal, stirring until evenly coated. Pour into 2-gallon resealable food-storage plastic bag.
3. Add powdered sugar. Seal bag; shake until well coated. Spread on waxed paper to cool. Store in airtight container in refrigerator.

Here is link to General Mills gluten free cereals and recipes!

Monday, April 5, 2010

White Chicken Chili

I saw this recipe on the Rachel Ray show and had to try it for myself. It was submitted by Mandi Forester and took a winning spot in the March Madness competition. It is a great one to throw in the crockpot early in the afternoon and enjoy at dinnertime. Since I cooked a Turkey yesterday I decided this was a good way to use up the leftovers. So technically this is White Turkey Chili.

1 32oz box chicken stock
3 cans white beans
5 cups cooked chicken (or turkey)
1 16 ounce jar salsa
1 8 ounce block pepper jack cheese, grated
2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper

tortilla chips
sour cream for garnish

Place all ingredients (except chips) in a crockpot. Cook on high until the cheese is melted. (After that, I set my crockpot on low or warm until dinnertime.)
Add crushed tortilla chips to thicken the soup and serve. Yummo!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Funeral Potatoes

Otherwise know as Ward Casserole Potatoes, and the slightly morbid Graveyard Potatoes. Either way they are a fantastic side dish to any meat.

1 bag frozen hashbrowns
1 can Health Valley Cream of Chicken soup
16 oz sour cream
2-3 cups medium cheddar cheese
1/2 cup diced onion
2 cups GF frosted flakes crushed
2 tbsp butter
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 350. Spray 9x13 pan with non-stick cooking spray. In large bowl mix hashbrowns, soup, sour cream, cheese and onion. Season with salt and pepper. Spread evenly into 9x13 pan. Crush corn flakes,(sometimes I used frosted flakes if that's all I have. I like the sweetness) and mix with melted butter. Sprinkle flakes on top. Bake uncovered for 30-40 minutes.

So what do I think about this soup? Well, I am so glad to have found it. We use many recipes that call for the traditional cream of chicken. However it is not a complete substitute for the Campbell's version that we know and love. This soup is quite a bit thinner. The can is also bigger so I have to remember not to always dump the whole can into my recipes, or they might be too runny. Health Valley also makes a GF cream of mushroom soup. Again, it is not the perfect substitute, but will work in a pinch.

Bean Dip

2 cans Refried beans
1/2 cup Chopped Jalapenos (I like it spicy)
16 oz Sour Cream
1 pkg Taco Seasoning
2 cups (8oz) Cheese
1 bunch chopped green onions
diced tomato
1 can sliced olives

Mix refried beans and jalapenos in a 9x18 pan. Spread evenly on the bottom of the pan. In a seperate bowl mix sour cream and taco seasoning together. Then spread over the top of the beans. Next layer on the cheese. Then top with tomato, olives and green onions.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Chicken Nuggets

Now here is a recipe that I wished I used before going gluten free. Chicken nuggets are a staple for kids these days, but have you ever read the ingredients on the package? Or tried the frozen GF version that the bread falls off of when microwaving. Not to mention the cost. This is such an easy, natural, and tasty way to make chicken nuggets that even an adult can enjoy. I'd keep this recipe handy for those nights when you are stumped, because it is so quick and takes so few ingredients.

3 large boneless skinless chicken breasts
3/4 cup gluten free bread crumbs (I like to use the Italian seasoned for more flavor)
1 egg
Canola Oil

Preheat a large skillet pan on med high. Add 2 tbsp of Canola oil, enough to coat the bottom of the pan. Cut chicken into 1 inch cubes. Dip cubes into the egg, then roll in the bread crumbs. I get a little lazy and use 1 large bowl to mix it all together. Pan fry them for approximately 5 minutes turning them half way through. Place cooked nuggets on a paper towel and sprinkle with parmesean cheese.

Need something to dip those tasty nuggets in? Try Some Dude's Fry Sauce. It's gluten free and Costco has a great deal on the giant size bottle. If you can't find it try making your own by mixing mayo and bbq sauce or ketchup.

serves 4-6

Farmers Casserole

This is the best breakfast casserole I've ever had!

6 cups shredded hashbrowns (I like Ore-Ida's Country Style)
1 1/2 cups grated cheese
2 cups diced ham
1/2 cup sliced green onions
2 1/2 cups eggs (8-10 eggs)
2 can (12oz) evaporated milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Spray a 9x13 pan with non stick spray.
Arrange hashbrowns evenly on bottom of the pan.
Sprinkle on ham, onions and cheese.

In a seperate bowl mix eggs, milk, salt and pepper.

Pour liquid over casserole evenly.

Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for approx 1 hour until a knife comes out clean.

Here is a link to Ore-Ida's website listing their Gluten Free products!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Vote for Gluten Free at Jason's Deli

Jason's Deli is doing a survey about offering gluten free food. Take a minute to let them know we are out there and would love to see more choices that are gluten free.

Rice Crispy Treats

1/2 stick butter
10 oz bag mini marshmallows
13 oz box Cocoa Pebbles cereal
1 cup M&M's

Spray a 9x13 pan with non stick cooking spray. Melt butter in large saucepan. Add marshmallows and stir constantly. Once melted, remove from heat and stir in cereal. Add M&M's and stir, then pour the mixture into the 9x13 pan. I spray my hand with the non stick spray so I can easily press the mixture into the pan. Let it cool for a bit. This is such a good twist on the traditional rice krispy treat. In this situtation the gluten free version wins, hands down!

Brittany's Story

When Brittany was 7 years old she was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. Shortly after this diagnosis, I noticed that she complained of tummy aches all the time. In fact, after she ate a meal she would lay across my lap doubled over in pain. She seemed to spend a fair amount of time in the bathroom as well. So at a checkup with her endo I asked him about this. He simply replied that she might have Celiac Disease.

Mind you, we were all ready overwhelmed with our new world of Diabetes, so I didn't even ask what Celiac was. I was on a need to know basis at that point, so if she didn't have it, I wasn't going to use what was all ready in short supply of my time, energy and worry. They performed a simple blood draw in the office that day and we went home.

Well, a week went by and no phone call back, so I called the doctors office and the nurse informed me that the doctor would call me back. That can't be good news. I remember his candid phone call saying that indeed her TTG levels were high and we should have her stomach biopsied to verify the diagnosis. My world was crumbling even more, but he said to me, "You can handle this." I suppose if we could handle the diabetes, we surely could handle this one too. It wasn't a coincidence that the Doctor's daughter also had Celiac, so he said this on good authority.

It was days before her 8th birthday party and I was debating what we were going to be serving for treats. I called the GI doctor and since the biopsy hadn't come back yet, they said to give the girl cake. It would be her last one. So we enjoyed a yummy butter cream frosted cake for the last time with her. I cry now as I am writing this, because it still upsets me that her world has changed so much.

Of course, the biopsy confirmed the Celiac Disease and we began our gluten-free journey. At first it seemed like EVERYTHING we were used to eating contained gluten. I spent time everyday on the internet searching for gluten free recipes. I spent countless hours on the phone calling food manufacturers to verify that the products were indeed gluten free.

Food became such a big ordeal for Brittany. First of all could she even eat it? Was it Gluten-free? Measuring and carb counting for the diabetes. Giving her an insulin shot and then hoping she would eat it all. There was much trial and error. And crying and frustration.

Three years have gone by and we have learned a lot. We have also eaten a lot. It isn't always fancy, but we do eat some yummy meals at our house. I figure this is the best way to pay forward what we have learned, by blogging some of our favorite and dependable recipes and tips. After all, it was through the blogging world that I found so much information to get us through to this point. And it turns out that we CAN do this!