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This week’s {mostly} gluten-free menu

Silas helping me make juice–he loves fresh juice and has been begging for me to make it every morning!

You may have noticed that we’re been experimenting with some gluten-free recipes at our house. One of our children has been experiencing some health issues and they are currently on a gluten-free, dairy-free diet for three weeks to see if it clears things up.

The rest of our family is adapting our diet somewhat, too, to make it easier for this child. It’s a new adventure and we’ll see how it goes! By the way, if you have any fantastic gluten-free recipes or websites you’d recommend, I’m all ears.

Here’s this week’s menu:


Granola Bars
Fresh carrot/orange juice, scrambled eggs
Green Monster Smoothie
Chocolate Peanut Granola
Oatmeal with brown sugar and raisins
Wheat-Free Pancakes, fruit


Lunch at friends’ house
Macaroni & cheese, peas
PB&J on rice cakes, carrot sticks, apple slices
Refried beans, rice, carrot sticks
Soup, carrot sticks, fruit
Leftovers x 2


Healthy Chocolate Mousse
Black Bean Brownies


Steak, potatoes, broccoli, fruit
Black Bean & Taco Bake, tossed salad
Hamburgers, tater tots, steamed veggies
Frito Chili Pie, fruit, brown rice
Dinner out
Dinner with extended family x 2

Freezer Cooking

Black Bean Brownies
Wheat-Free Pancakes
Frito Chili Pie

What’s on your menu this week? Share details and/or your link to your menu plan in the comments.

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  1. says

    I wanted to send this ebook to Crystal, but decided to just post it here for everyone. I will leave it up as a free download only until Saturday (2/4/12)…so grab your copy now! I put together these recipes a couple summers ago when my parents (from out of state) came to see us for a couple weeks. They were on a gluten-free, dairy-free, and sugar-free diet, so I went to work coming up with recipes I could fix while they were here. This cookbook is the result of all my research.

    Here is the link:
    http://www.sherigraham.com/files/Gluten-Free Cookbook for Beginners-ebook.pdf

    I hope it is a blessing to some who are just starting out with a gluten-free diet!

  2. Heather says

    I wonder if all the people going gluten and/or grain free (who are not gluten sensitive) and feel so much healthier, are feeling better because they have cut out the gluten, or because a diet like that naturally forces you to cut back on processed foods, store-bought baked goods, and sugar.

    • Tiffany says

      I was wondering the same thing Heather! It seems like gluten free has become the new “fad”. When I was growing up (I am 31 now) I never heard of gluten and certainly didn’t know anyone that was GF. Now, it seems that so many people are allergic to gluten and I don’t understand. Was it because people were allergic and just didn’t know it, so they lived with the consequences? It’s all so confusing to me. I also heard that unless you are truly allergic to gluten then it’s not advised to go GF, because it can have health benefits. It’s like I almost feel “bad” that I am not GF.

      • Heather says

        Well, there is a blood test for celiac disease, so there are people who legitimately have it. I think that in the past it was either diagnosed less, or for some environmental reason the number of cases are increasing. But I think it is also becoming a fad now, too, thanks in part to the Internet facilitating the rapid spread of information.

        It’s a topic that interests me, as I have a friend with it, and I suspect that a family member does. I am also interested in general nutrition – I know I should eat less sugar, but boy, it’s hard! And, I have also heard that there is nothing wrong with gluten unless you are allergic to it – that there are health benefits to it. But I know that not everyone agrees with that. Again, the Internet makes it easy for people with inadequate medical and scientific training, or with a particular axe to grind, to have a large voice. We have to very careful what we believe.

  3. ann says

    Hi Crystal,
    I don’t have any gluten free recipes. I would like to suggest giving a lot of homemade water kefir to your child to populate the gut with good bacteria. You can get kefir grains that can be used over and over again making it very economical. Have you tried reading about the Gaps diet? I read it from keeperofthehome dot org and nourishedkitchen dot com. There are some good books too. It looks very promising.

  4. Debrah says

    We’re gluten free and have found that http://www.glutenfreemommy.com is a great resource. We love her millet-oatmeal bread. Also the cookbook “Cooking for Isaiah” has been a great help. Food Network also has several recipes if you search “gluten free”. Whole Foods also typically has a gluten free cooking series this time of year, if it becomes apparent that this is going to be a way of life for your family. In general, I’ve discovered that I can make better food from scratch than the pre-prepared products and mixes. That being said, King Arthur Flour makes a fantastic cake mix and their flour substitute works well for converting most of my “normal” recipes to gluten free.

  5. Natalie says

    My son was diagnosed with Celiac Disease a little over a year ago. The best advice I can give you is to read everything. You will be surprised by the things that have gluten in them. Such as toothpaste, soap, soy sauce, certain medications. We stick to a mainly meat and vegetable diet, but he can still have his favorites, I just had to try several recipes to get one he liked the best. With my child I can tell within an hour if he has gotten gluten. His behavior changes a little while before he gets violently ill. The other problem we have noticed is that he tends to be vitamin deficient especially of B12 which makes him very tired. He takes a multi – vitamin everyday and gets a b12 shot every two – three months. Just be careful with the multi – vitamin as a lot of them contain gluten. Good Luck and I hope things get easier for you!

  6. says

    My brother, dad and sister-in-law are doing the Paleo diet (mostly nuts, seeds, meat, fruit and veggies) and I have found a lot of great recipes doing a search for paleo in Google. As well http://www.foodgawker.com and do a search for Paleo. My FAVORITE recipe (and I will be making this again, it is amazing) is 5 ingredients and it tastes like a cookie/bar…

    Paleo Pumpkin Brownies (from This Primal Life)
    1 cup almond butter
    ¾ cup mashed pumpkin or other squash, canned or steamed
    1 egg
    1/3 cup honey
    1 tsp baking soda

    Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Mix well. Pour into a greased 8 x 8 in pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Serves 8.

  7. says

    I commend you for making these dietary changes for your son… And for your whole family. It is not easy but it does get easier with time. Please check out my Facebook page for information and recipes about gluten-free food. I absolutely love to bake and I love to find new recipes and make them so that you guys can try them too. I have posted over 95 albums about recipes and products that we like! Good luck and many blessings on your family! I love your blog by the way!

    • says

      On Facebook, you can find my page under celiac chick Newburgh. The recipes are all in the photos. click see all photos. Again I just make the recipes I do not create them!

  8. Andrea says

    Three things I thought of to add (that I didn’t see mentioned):

    If your daughter is super sensitive to gluten and you still have it in the house, everything she eats is likely cross-contaminated.

    Store-bought play-doh contains gluten. Some children are so sensitive that playing with it causes a reaction.

    Instead of thinking of all the things she can’t eat, think of all the things she can and build your menus around those. There are hundreds (if not thousands) of things that she can still eat.

  9. Jane Lange says

    WOW!! there are so many out there who eat gluten-free, etc-free, me too. :) One simple but delicious item I use for quick things like muffins, is ,” Pamela’s pancake and baking mix”. It is a wfgf mix, ready to use (I prefer making my own mixes) but in a pinch or hurry this is great. Great pancakes and great muffins. :) Look for it at Woodman’s, it is the least expensive that I have found. Otherwise, Amazon.com has this product and you can purchase it there for even less, and usually it is free shipping. I love to cook and bake, so I adapt my favorite recipes by using a wfgf substitute and xanthan gum, then continue with my normal recipe. So far this works for me. Have fun with all the recipes.

  10. Dineen says

    I see that Kimberlee from PeacefulMom.com already posted. I just started reading her site and she has great budget-friendly GF menu plans. She’s right that eating whole, natural foods is the most budget-friendly way to go GF — get your carbohydrates from non-baked goods like potatoes, rice, alternate “grains” like quinoa, buckwheat and so on.

    I like Lynn’s Recipe Adventures – http://lynnskitchenadventures.com/lra/ has a wide variety of baking recipes using individual flours instead of premixed flours.

    I haven’t made any of their recipes (you really need a good gram scale) but I love Gluten-free girl and the Chef because now they are baking with whole grains a lot more instead of the white starches and not using xanthum and guar gums (breaking rules of what you thought you had to do to get good baked goods). [glutenfreegirl.com] They have more than just baking recipes and she is just a joy to read too.

    I was lucky to find Gluten-Free for Dummies at a thrift store for 50 cents. It is a great reference book and starter tool. It includes basic recipes and information on the most common gluten free grains used in GF baking. I highly recommend it. Perhaps you can find it at your local library?

    I am new to GF myself because of autoimmune issues and I am hoping my husband on the Autism spectrum will experience relief of some symptoms as well.

  11. Courtney says

    I was wondering what appliance you used for making juice. I would love to do this but don’t really have storage space or the desire to have an appliance that only serves one purpose. Also, I have found this to be very expensive (very little juice from a lot of fruit). Do you or anyone else have suggests to make this more cost effective? Thanks so much.

  12. Kris says

    Elenas pantry.com has THE best desserts and homemade candy bars.

    Cheeseslave.com has a good coconut flour pancake recipe.

    The civilized caveman.com also has great paleo desserts. Love the chocolate coconut milk ice cream

  13. says

    Crystal, I know it’s not easy, but I would recommend trying the diet changes for 6 – 12 weeks. It can take up to 6 weeks for gluten and casein to completely leave the body. Many people notice some improvement within the first week, but that’s not always the case.

    Also, you are probably aware that most oats (such as Quaker) are usually heavily contaminated with gluten. I would not recommend using even gluten-free oats during this trial period. Some people cannot tolerate oats, and if that is the case, it may cloud the results you see from the diet.

    I’m more than happy to help if you have any questions for me. Shoot me an email!

    • says

      We’re already seeing positive results, so we’re hopeful that possibly we’ve found the culprit to some long-standing issues. Thanks so much for your thoughts & encouragement!

      • T says

        It can take a year or more to fully heal from the damage caused by gluten intolerance. Just be patient if things change slowly.

  14. Jennifer says


    My three-year old son recently went gluten/dairy/soy free d/t some food intolerances and ADHD behaviors with spectacular improvements. It is hard but so worth it! The best gluten-free flour I have found hands down is the King Arthur gluten-free flour blend. Their website has some amazing gluten-free recipes. I pack my son’s lunch for daycare, and a big favorite is chicken tenders made with pieces of chicken, ran through an egg batter and then using either the KAF gf flour blend or gf bisquick mixed with spices to dredge the pieces and then skillet fry or bake. They freeze awesome, so I usually make up a big batch and pull them out as needed. Good luck with the gluten-free journey, it is an adjustment!

  15. says

    I am new to eating gluten free and thankfully since I cook a lot (like you!) it really hasn’t been that hard. What is difficult is eating out, since you don’t know what is in your food. I know you and your family love chocolate chips- so you should try my chocolate chip pancake recipe! http://glutenfreesupper.com/?p=519

    Good luck!

  16. Natalie says

    I’m sorry if this is repetitive but 180comments is a lot to read through.
    I noticed that you have been posting a lot about Gluten Free Diets and I want to make sure that your readers understand that eating Gluten Free is not a healthier way of living UNLESS you have been diagnosed by a doctor with Celiac’s disease. Eating Gluten Free is not healthier. People who are on gluten free diets have to be very careful that they are getting enough vitamins and minerals and often this is very difficult.
    Thank you as a healthcare provider I wanted to just voice this warning to your readers!

    • says

      Or a food allergy/intolerance, which is different from Celiac’s. There are plenty of people that test negative for Celiac’s and still cannot eat gluten. Thanks for voicing your concern, but there are plenty of conditions that you didn’t include.

  17. says

    You can make the brownies even easier and egg-free by using a gluten-free brownie mix then puree a 6oz soy yogurt and a can of black beans and then mixing that into the brownie mix and spreading in a pan.

  18. Jenny says

    I eat gluten free and mostly dairy free and one of my favorite cookbooks is “Cooking for Isaiah” by Silvana Nardone. The rest of my family eats gluten-full, and they love the recipes too. :) I’ve shared the brownie recipe w/friends and they love it. My daughter requested the chocolate cake for her birthday…to me that must be a winning recipe! :) My thoughts and prayers are with you and your kids as you try and figure out what is making them feel bad.

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