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Whole Foods Gluten-free Bakehouse


If you live near a Whole Foods, take advantage of their special Gluten-free Bakehouse section, which offers amazing products including breads, muffins, pie crusts (for pies or quiche!), pizza crusts (my favorite), desserts, biscuits, hamburger buns (can’t wait to try these!), and granola.  They are usually in the freezer section of the store.  They aren’t cheap, but they are delicious, and they just might save you in a pinch when you can’t or don’t want to bake your own treats.

If you go to this website, you will find a list of all their products with a link at the bottom for nutritional information for all of them.

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Pancakes

There’s just something cozy about pancakes for breakfast.  I love mixing, flipping, and stacking them on my kids’ plates.  It makes me feel very domestic, and it gives me points for “Mother of the Year”.  (I need all the points I can muster in the domestic part of the competition.)

My favorite gluten-free pancakes are from a mix by Pamela’s, appropriately called “Baking and Pancake Mix”.  They’re nice and fluffy and have great taste and texture.

If I’m going to go to the trouble of mixing, flipping, and stacking in the wee hours of the morning, I don’t just make enough for one meal either.  I make the whole darn thing.  You can put them in the freezer, pull them out one by one, and get that pancake feeling anytime you want.  And, that gives you point in the “wonderfully smart and ‘with it’ department.”  🙂

(As a side note, if you happen to need a good dairy-free pancake mix, I’ve also enjoyed Kinnikinnick’s brand.)


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My Favorite Gluten-Free Products

DSC_0852Gluten-free products are expensive, so I try to use them sparingly.  But, I do have a few favorites for special treats or recipes or substitutions.

Envirokidz Koala Crisp Cereal makes chocolate “Rice Crispy Treats”

Health Valley Rice Crackers can be used for s’mores, a graham cracker crust, or miniature gingerbread houses.

K-Toos “Oreos” are wonderful on their own or as a pie crust.

I use the Animal Crackers by K-Kritters or Envirokids as the Nilla Wafers in banana pudding.

Those pretzels are going in the classic Chex Mix I’ll be making shortly.

DSC_0849I use these soups from Health Valley to replace Cream of Chicken or Cream of Mushroom Soup in recipes like Potato Casserole, Breakfast Casserole, Beef Stroganoff, or Chicken Tetrazzini.

DSC_0853My favorite brand of flours is Bob’s Red Mill.  I really like Mr. Bob.  I use these 3 flours for my baking mix.

DSC_0854See these?  They’re dangerous.  They’re my weakness.  I’m warning you not to buy them.

DSC_0864I’ve tried lots of pasta, and Tinkyada is the best.  It is just like regular pasta in taste and consistency, except that you will need to spend some of your kids’ college fund to buy it regularly.  I think it’s worth it.

DSC_0866And speaking of spending big bucks, to me sometimes my money isn’t really buying the food.  It’s buying the joy of seeing my kids delight in a donut like any other kid.  Sometimes those smiles are just worth it.

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Key Lime Pie

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I made myself my very own Key Lime Pie for my birthday.

And, while I thoroughly enjoyed eating the whole pie by myself in 2 days flat, there was something else I enjoyed even more.

Making this pie was a momentous event for me, because it was the first time that having to figure out to make something special from my “former way of life” gluten free didn’t intimidate me AT ALL!  I had seen a recipe I wanted to try, and I just jumped in, knowing I could make it taste just as yummy with a simple substitution.

And, that, my friends, is so KEY!  (get it?…KEY?!)  🙂  Knowing how to make an easy substitution to make  a recipe gluten free is SIMPLE much of the time.

In this case, I just had to adjust the pie crust, replacing the graham crackers with GF ones.  I used a box of rice crackers by Health Valley.

DSC_0647These are delicious!  They’re so good in fact that I had to dig this box out of the recycling bin to photograph it.  As soon as the box is opened, my kids spread on the peanut butter and banana or jelly for a yummy snack, and they’re gone.  You can use these for S’mores also, or for anything which need a graham cracker-like substitute.  If you’re like me, you will buy some for your family, and then hide some so that when the pie urge hits, you will be prepared.

I used a recipe from the thepioneerwoman.com.  You can find it here.  Just use the GF crackers, and you’re ready.  It’s as easy as pie!  (sorry, couldn’t help it)

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A Trip to the Grocery Store

I took a field trip to the local grocery store, to show all the choices we have in what we can eat.  Every aisle had something gluten-free on it, even the bread aisle, and sometimes whole sections of the store had foods to choose from.

DSC_0569First stop:  the Deli, where most cheeses and deli meats are OK.

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The Bakery.  Hold your breath and walk quickly.  There is nothing for you here.

DSC_0574Fresh Produce!

Take your pick; it’s all gluten free, and it’s all good for you!  Spend lots of time here!

DSC_0587Snacks!  All I can say is God Bless Frito Lay!

Tostitos, Fritos, Plain and Baked potato chips, Cheetos, Plain Ruffles, most Doritos (not nacho cheese) and also many but not all of the flavored chips are gluten-free.

We try not to make chips a staple, but it sure is nice to be able to eat them, especially for things like team snacks, traveling, etc.  They are so easy to find, and they seem so normal!

DSC_0593And now we get to the evil bread aisle.

But wait!  There is a spark of hope.

Grab some corn tortillas and some corn tostadas (crispy flat shells) and run away without looking back!

That bread doesn’t deserve you anyway!

DSC_0596See this lovely Dairy section?

Pick whatever you’d like!

(but check the ingredients first, there may some sneaky gluten in here even though I’ve never seen it)

DSC_0597the Drink aisle….

soft drinks?  Check!

juices?  Yep!

coffee? tea?  It’s all good!

DSC_0586The Grown-up drink Aisle…Have your fill!

DSC_0584But then there’s this.  Sorry, friends, but you must flee from the beer.  There are gluten free beers available, just not here.

DSC_0599Canned Foods:

Be a little careful here.  If it’s just a plain fruit or veggie, you’re OK, but stay away from the seasoned ones.  Most of the canned beans are fine too.  You can even have most canned tuna, chili, or baked beans.  These get a little tricky with reading ingredient labels, so check carefully.

On the right side of this aisle, you could pick up some dried beans, unseasoned rice,  Jello, pudding, marshmallows, applesauce, or raisins.

DSC_0602This is the cereal and breakfast aisle.  Ignore all other cereals, and go straight to the Chex.  The gluten-free varieties are labeled clearly.  You can also use the recipes on the boxes for yummy snacks.

Next, find the Nature Valley “Almond Crunch” bars.  I carry these with me everywhere to have something to eat anytime I’m out and get hungry, which is actually every time I’m out.

DSC_0580And look!  This store even had a “Natural Foods” section where I found GF oatmeal, GF pasta, and even some GF baking mixes!

I didn’t buy any, because they are much cheaper at my local Sprouts or on Amazon, but it’s good to know they carry them in a pinch.

At this point, my happy photographic field trip came to a bitter and immediate end, when I saw a large, angry  fellow marching up the aisle in my direction.  Turns out, Kroger does not smile upon nice customers who just happen to like taking photos of their shopping experience.

And that’s a shame, because now I can’t show you these:

The Meat Department, where you can buy anything that isn’t pre-seasoned or marinated

The Cheese and Lunchmeat section, where almost everything is safe to eat

The Condiment aisle, where peanut butter and jelly, mustard, ketchup, mayo, pickles, and olives can still be your friends

The Frozen section, where you’ll find ice cream and Ore Ida french fries

The Baking aisle, where the chocolate chips and Betty Crocker GF mixes for cakes, cookies, or brownies are calling your name

The Candy aisle, where you can cheer for Snickers, Reeses, Hershey’s bars, 3 Musketeers, Butterfingers, Skittles, Twizzlers, … Most candy is GF.  Just watch out for the obvious cookie ingredient (Twix) and “barley malt”

So, now your cart is full of good things to eat, all from your local store, and my camera’s card reader is full of illegal images from mine.

Happy Shopping!

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