Learning More About Gluten-Free Food Options

(Disclosure: I participated in this program on behalf of Udi’s and The Motherhood. All opinions are my own.)

Most people go Gluten-Free because they have celiac disease or a gluten intolerance but I have considered going gluten-free (and casein-free) in the past because some people say it is a good diet for children who have Autism. The biggest thing holding me back was that I didn’t think Lucas, my four year old who has Autism, would do well with the limited diet. I just thought about all of the things he wouldn’t be able to eat at school and birthday parties. He is too young to understand the change but yet too old for us to pretend all these foods don’t exist.

Thankfully, I’ve learned about Udi’s Gluten-Free foods this month. I had heard of them before but had in my mind that foods labeled “gluten-free” tasted like cardboard. After tasting an assortment of their products, I can say that this is definitely not the case with Udi’s products. Lucas can still have the foods he loves, just a gluten-free version of them. I love this quote from Udi’s as well: “Udi’s changed the way consumers think about gluten free. We made can’ts, cans. We removed the restrictions that made living gluten free a struggle and made the transition seamless.”

Udi’s products I sampled included breads, bagels, muffins, chips, granola bars, tortillas, cookies, and granola. I want to focus on the sweets and snack items for this post because I think that those would be the items that would be the hardest to give up if we went gluten-free so it’s important that good tasting, gluten-free options exist. My absolute favorite item out of the bunch were the Snickerdoodle cookies. They were delicious!

The other two desserts I had were really good as well. The dark chocolate brownie bites tasted pretty close to a non-GF brownie. The Salted Caramel Cashew cookies had a great taste as well, though were a bit crunchier than I like my cookies.

Another snack item I tried were the chocolate chip granola bars. I tend to stick to one main granola bar brand so these didn’t taste exactly like the ones I normally eat but they are pretty comparable to other brands of granola bars that are on the market. If I went Gluten-Free these would definitely be in my purse and in the soccer bag.

I like to eat granola cereal for breakfast but I also eat it as a quick snack by itself or sprinkled on yogurt. Udi’s Blueberry Cashew Granola was very good. I loved that the clusters were huge which made it easy to snack on.

Curious about the other items that Udi’s has? Learn about all their gluten-free products on their website.

Gluten-Free Apple Crisp {Recipe}

Ingredients

  • 6 large tart apples (Pippin or Granny Smith)
  • 1/3 cup sugar, or 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons tapioca starch
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • Generous pinch salt
  • 3 tablespoons cold butter

Topping

  • 1/2 cup sweet white rice flour
  • 1/2 cup millet flour
  • 1/2 cup tapioca starch
  • 1 cup packed golden brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 3/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup gluten-free oats
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)
Directions
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. 
  • Peel, core and slice the apples into 1/4-inch slices. 
  • Put the apple slices into a large bowl and sprinkle the sugar over the top. 
  • Add the tapioca starch, cinnamon, five-spice, ginger and salt and toss together to evenly coat the apple slices. 
  • Pour into a 9 by 13-inch baking pan, dot the top with pieces of the butter and set aside. 
  • To make the topping, combine the flours, tapioca starch, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, five-spice and ginger in a mixing bowl. In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, mix in the butter until it is uniformly incorporated into the flour mixture. Stir in the oats and pecans.
  • Crumble the oat topping evenly over the apples. 
  • Bake until the topping is golden brown and set and the apples are warm and bubbly, 55 to 60 minutes.

Note: You can prepare everything ahead of time. Refrigerate the apple filling and keep the topping frozen until ready to assemble and bake. Don’t refrigerate the unbaked topping overnight since the millet flour will interact with the butter and taste and smell cheesy when it’s baked.

Recipe and image courtesy of: Kyra Bussanich, two-time winner of The Food Network’s hit show, “Cupcake Wars.” She graduated with honors from Le Cordon Bleu and opened her award-winning bakery, Kyra’s Bake Shop, which features gourmet, gluten-free sweets. She has branched beyond desserts to other gluten-free goods in order to help those with celiac and other autoimmune diseases enjoy quality treats.

Gluten-Free Chewy Chocolate Macaroons {Recipe}

 

You can’t go wrong with these easy to make, gluten-free macaroons. Yum. Recipe and image courtesy of Terry Walters, author of the best-selling cookbook CLEAN FOOD.

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1⁄4 cup coconut milk
  • 1⁄4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 cup gluten- and dairy-free chocolate chips or 6 ounces dark chocolate

DIRECTIONS

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • In large mixing bowl, combine coconut with salt. In separate bowl, whisk together coconut milk, maple syrup and almond extract. Add to coconut and stir until evenly moist.
  • Melt chocolate chips or chocolate in double boiler or in small pot over very low heat and pour into coconut mixture. Fold until evenly combined. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper. Scoop batter by the tablespoonful and place on cookie sheet in equal-size mounds.
  • Gently press to make each mound of mixture stick together. Bake 18–20 minutes or until tops appear dry. Remove from heat and place on rack to cool.

MAKES 18 macaroons

(Disclosure: I did not receive compensation for posting this recipe.)

Gluten-Free Crunchmaster Multi-Grain Crackers {Review and Giveaway}

We are not a gluten free household but with all the talk I’ve been hearing lately about how helpful gluten free diets are to children with special needs we might be headed in that direction. I was excited to try my first product that’s labeled gluten free when I sampled Crunchmaster Multi-Grain Crackers. I was sent a case to try out which included three flavors. I wasn’t sure what to expect because I’m used to eating buttery tasting crackers and I was worried these might be horrible but I think for a gluten free product they tasted pretty good. I liked that they were flavored and enjoyed the white cheddar variety the most. They were crunchy and I really like that they are good for me since they are 100% whole grain and low in fat. I think they are a great option for people that are on gluten free diets and can’t have other cracker products.

GIVEAWAY:

One reader will win a case (12 bags) of crackers

HOW TO ENTER:

(Do any or all of the following, leave a comment for each you do)

1) Visit the site and tell me which flavor you want to try

2) Share this giveaway on a social network

3) Tweet: “Win #glutenfree crackers from @luvcrunchmaster & @aliciamarie112 at www.makingtimeformommy.com ”

4) Subscribe to this blog via email or RSS (look in upper right corner)

5) Blog about this giveaway

6) Enter another one of my giveaways (they can be found here)

Giveaway ends on January 6, 2012 at 11:59pm Central time. US Only.

(Disclosure: I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms MeetSM program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms MeetSM blogger, I agreed to use this product and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC or the manufacturer of the product.)