Tag Archives: gluten free food

5 Reasons to Create a List of Gluten Free Foods

Organization can help anything – including living a gluten free lifestyle. By creating and keeping a list of gluten free foods, you’ll quickly see how helpful it can be. Here are 5 reasons (and there are certainly more!) to create your own list of gluten free foods.

  1. Shopping reference – A gluten free foods list is extremely helpful when it comes time to go grocery shopping. If you keep your list organized by store and by aisle, you will see how quickly you can accomplish your regular shopping trip. Some people choose to have an online list as well so that it’s easy to order all the gluten free foods that are not available locally.
  2. Keep track of favorites – With so many great gluten free products being introduced, it’s a good idea to keep track of which brands and items your family enjoys. You can even rate the items on your list. One way to get really organized is to use a spreadsheet program like Microsoft Excel and have columns for brand, item, store you buy it from, price and rating. No matter how you keep track of it, having a list of gluten free foods will help you know what you like – and also help you determine which products you have yet to try.
  3. Share with friends and family – If you are invited to dinner at a friend’s home, it’s nice to have a list of gluten free foods that you can share with them. Most people are happy to accommodate special dietary needs. With a list of gluten free food that works for a gluten free diet, your host or hostess will be well equipped to create a wonderful meal that works for everyone.
  4. Keep motivated – Having a huge list of gluten free foods that are OK to eat can be motivating. Any time you feel deprived or that you wish you could eat wheat, looking at your list will help you realize just how much food you CAN eat while staying healthy. A well built list can really serve to remind you how much variety is possible while remaining gluten free.
  5. Dining out – If you can bring a list of gluten free foods with you to a local family restaurant, chances are the chef can prepare an amazing meal for you – completely gluten free. More and more restaurants are realizing how important it is to be sensitive to dietary requirements. With a helpful list, you will make it much easier for the restaurant to help you.

Even if you find only one of these 5 reasons helpful, the time you spend creating the list will be well worth it.

Organizing Your Gluten Free Products List

The key to approaching any lifestyle change is organization. If you can create a plan and keep from getting overwhelmed you’ll be a step ahead of the pack. One of the ways to be successful with a gluten free diet is to develop and then organize your gluten free products list.

Gluten Free Products
The first step is to create a list of gluten free foods. You’ll find that you’ll refer to this list again and again. You can use it as a shopping list, send it to friends and family to help them learn about your dietary requirements or take it with you when you go to restaurants. Here are a few types of gluten free products:

  • Breads
  • Cookies
  • Cakes
  • Muffins
  • Pancakes
  • Pastas
  • Baking Mixes
  • Condiments
  • Beer and Alcohol
  • Baking Supplies – Flour, baking powder, baking soda, chocolate chips, etc.
  • Gluten free oats

Organizing Your List
There are a few methods you can use to organize your list. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Organize by grocery aisle. This is a great way to speed up your shopping. If there is a particular store you prefer to shop at, organize your list in the same order as the aisles. You’ll find that this method of organization will greatly speed up your shopping trip. You can allso add your regular grocery items to the same list and you will cut your shopping time down. The only drawback to this method is that you’ll probably just want to list your favorites on this list so it won’t be a comprehensive list.
  • Organize by food type. Some folks like to know all the gluten free products that are available in each category. For example, all the gluten free crackers and bread brands might be listed together. This is a good way to organize if you want to create a complete list of gluten free products. Categories might include breads and bread products, cookies, cakes, condiments, gluten free snacks and pastas.
  • Organize by brand. Some find that they do most of their shopping online and having all products organized by brand speeds up the ordering process.

No matter how you organize your list, you’ll have an easier time of it if you do it on the computer. By starting an electronic list you can update it on a regular basis and change the sorting method anytime.

Once you’ve created and organized your gluten free products list you’ll come to depend on it. Be sure to update it as you discover new products. The investment in time will be well worth it as you create your own extremely valuable resource to gluten free products.

The Coeliac Society – A Great Resource

If you’ve recently been diagnosed with coeliac disease, finding all the resources you can is important to learning about your condition. The coeliac society is one of the organizations that you should become familiar with as they are a tremendous source of information and support. In this article we’ll give you a quick overview of this great organization along with some contact information and tips for getting involved.

What is the Coeliac Society?
Coeliac Society is a UK based charity dedicated to helping people who have been diagnosed with coeliac disease and dermatitis herpetiformis (DH). They provide a great service in the UK offering support, research and campaigning. Anyone who has been diagnosed by their physician with coeliac disease or DH can join the charity. They currently have over 50,000 members and hundreds more join each month.

The coeliac society is a great resource for individuals in the UK (and also out of it) when it comes to finding information on gluten free foods, gluten free recipes and following a gluten free diet. In addition to all of the support they provide their members, they’re also very active in raising money for much needed research. One of the great benefits of being a member is the monthly updates they send out on the research and advancements that are being made in treating coeliac disease.

Types of Coeliac Society Support
For £20 per year, you can join the coeliac society if you have been diagnosed with coeliac disease or DH. You can also join if you are the parent or guardian of someone who has been diagnosed. There are significant benefits of becoming a member of the coeliac society. Some of those benefits include:

  • Food and Drink Directory – Their gluten free products list is amazing. Over 10,000 products are listed and the directory is updated each month. It’s available online.
  • Food and Drink Hotline – This live help hotline can provide information on the ingredients of foods and drinks.
  • Dietician Hotline – Speak to a dietitian about your condition. You can also ask submit questions via an internet form.
  • Crossed Grain Magazine – Their 3x yearly magazine provides information and inspirational stories.
  • eXG – A monthly online newsletter that gives the food and drink directory updates along with news and medical advancements.

Coeliac Society Contact Information
High Wycombe office
3rd Floor
Apollo Centre
Desborough Road
High Wycombe
Bucks
HP11 2QW

http://www.coeliac.org.uk/

Switchboard: 01494 437278
Fax: 01494 474349
Helpline: 0845 305 2060

Being diagnosed with coeliac disease or DH is a life changing experience. By joining groups like the Coeliac Society you can draw on a huge wealth of knowledge. Having knowledgeable people to call or email can make a world of difference as you’re trying to learn all you can about this serious condition. You’re not in it alone and the Coeliac Society can help.

Your Local Gluten Free Bakery

When you first began learning about gluten free food, chances are wondering how you were going to get gluten free bread and other baked goods was high on your priority list. For most people, purchasing gluten free products from a health food store or grocery store is the way to go – for both ready-made baked goods like gluten free cookies and also for ingredients to bake. In this article we’ll discuss another avenue for getting amazing gluten free snacks – your local gluten free bakery.

Gluten Free Bakeries
As the demand for gluten free products has increased, so has the availability of local gluten free bakeries. Some of these bakeries offer a limited but unbelievably tasty variety of products. Some may only carry bread and gluten free cake for example. Others may have a full line of gluten free pastries, cookies, wheat free bread, biscuits, muffins, gluten free cheesecake, gluten free pizzas and possibly custom foods like gluten free appetizers. If you have a gluten free bakery in your area make it a priority to give them a try. Sample a product from each category if you can. A local gluten free bakery can be a great resource for custom orders like gluten free crackers – not to mention just a place you know you can get wonderful baked goods that will be healthy as well.

How to Find a Gluten Free Bakery
The easiest way to locate a gluten free bakery is to do a search online. If your town doesn’t have a bakery, try the next largest city. If you have a gluten free bakery within a reasonable driving distance it’s worth it to investigate. Gluten free bakeries follow strict guidelines to ensure that all of their products are gluten free. Imagine walking in and knowing that everything is on the ‘approved’ list for folks with gluten sensitivity or celiac disease.

Gluten Free Ingredients
How do gluten free bakeries do it? Instead of using gluten containing ingredients like wheat flour or products that contain wheat, rye, barley or cross contaminated oats, they use 100% gluten free ingredients. Rice, amaranth, tapioca, sorghum and teff flours are all used in a variety of products. Xanthan gum is added to improve the texture of flours that don’t have natural elasticity. Potato starch and cornstarch are also used. Gluten free bakeries also make sure to incorporate gluten free versions of baking soda, baking powder and every other ingredient that goes into their products.

When you first begin to experiment with gluten free cooking there are hits and misses. We’ve all had our experiences with cakes that turn out like hockey pucks or cookies that just didn’t make the grade. A gluten free bakery is a resource you can draw on when you want a gluten free item and you want it to be perfect without having to go to all the work yourself.

Great Sources for Celiac Recipes

Any time you learn to cook a new type of food, whether it’s Chinese, French or Gluten Free, it’s a good idea to get instruction and inspiration from outside sources. Making a fabulous gluten free recipe can be straightforward and satisfying. Here are a few sources for recipes for your gluten free diet.

Online Recipes
Want to know the basics of cooking quinoa? Don’t know how to create a gluten free cake? If you want to make tasty and satisfying gluten free food, your best bet for finding recipes is online. There are many benefits to online recipes. The primary benefit is that most online celiac recipes are free. If you’re willing to put in some effort trying multiple recipes you’re sure to come away with the experience with new found knowledge and a recipe box full of new favorite dishes. Be forewarned however that online recipes haven’t necessarily been tested in a professional kitchen so results may vary. One thing you can do to improve your results is to make sure you use the brands mentioned in the recipe.

Gluten Free Cookbooks
While online recipe sources are a great way to find inexpensive recipes, there is a benefit to having a few gluten free cookbooks on your bookshelves. Cookbooks can be vital resources when it comes to general gluten free cooking techniques. If you want to understand why you need to add xanthan gum to a gluten or wheat free bread, for example, a free internet recipe will not have that information while a good gluten free cookbook will. (The answer to the question, by the way, is that xanthan gum helps to provide the chewy texture that is found in gluten.)

Gluten Free Magazines
If you’re looking for some seasonal recipe ideas, gluten free magazines can be a great resource. Most magazines have a section entirely devoted to recipes and cooking tips. If you find a recipe, gluten free appetizers for example, that sounds appealing but you don’t have time to make it in the immediate future, be sure to clip it out for use another day. Some organizations like the Coeliac Society produce monthly newsletters that are also a great source of recipes.

Invent Your Own
Once you’ve been cooking gluten free meals for awhile, why not try your hand at creating your own recipes? After acquiring some experience with combining different types of ingredients to substitute for wheat flour, and seeing which types of processed foods contain gluten – chances are you’ll be ready to create your own culinary masterpieces. And there is no better teacher than experience – and experiments!

Gluten free cooking can be rewarding and fun – and it’s even easier when you have great recipes. By trying recipes from a myriad of sources you’ll increase your cooking experience and expand the variety at your table.