Gluten free Gooey Delight

This is something that I created by accident. I admit it. Those things happen and sometimes they taste amazing!

Mix all ingredients below in bowl:

1 bag Brookes Naturals Brownie mix

2 egg whites (instead of the 3 eggs on the bag)

1 C applesauce (instead of the three eggs on the bag)

3/4C melted coconut oil (instead of butter on the bag)

Spray baking dish with coconut oil, add mixture above and bake for 20 minutes. Line top of brownies with square campfire marshmallows, end to end and bake for 4 minutes.

Pull out of oven and cool on counter (so marshmallows reduce in fluffiness). This will be a liquid consistency that is scoopable into a bowl. Great with ice cream!

To transport, cover with wax paper before a lid. Enjoy!

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Gluten free treat bars

You know I love easy recipes!

Here’s one of my favorites for celiacs and non-Celiacs will love them too.

1 16 oz container Marshmallow fluff (I prefer this brand as it’s food coloring free)

1.5C Coconut oil

10oz (half a family size box) Cheerios (your choice of flavor) I use the original flavor because the fluff is so sweet and it’s a nice contrast.

Add-ins welcome: chocolate chips, sprinkles, nuts mini marshmallows, etc

Line baking dish with wax paper and spray with coconut oil (Critical if you want them to come out of the pan after cooling). 

Heat coconut oil over medium heat in large stock pot. When melted, add entire container of marshmallow fluff and stir continuously until entire container is warm (about 3 minutes) then add cheerios and stir until all cereal is coated. Immediately transfer onto the lined baking dish. 

If you use add-ins, sprinkle then on top now. Mini marshmallows can be placed in holes to help them melt slightly and stick in the texture.

For bars you need to chill for about 15-20 minutes in the refrigerator. Or you can consume warm by scooping with a spoon.


Cheerio!

Gluten free at Six Flags??

My family loves amusement parks. In fact, my husband and I got married next to a resort destination one and rode roller coasters at our reception. 

Since the kids have grown tall enough to enjoy all the parks have to offer, we decided to purchase season passes this year at Six Flags Great America. Since we are from Indy, it’s a hike regardless of where we go but a four hour ride also allows us to tap into all Chicago has to offer.


While doing my online food research I read that the park had gluten free options but they didn’t give any specifics. Restaurants and snack shops were listed but no menus.


When I entered the park, they searched our bags. Presumably for weapons but according to the posted signs, it was also for food. No outside for or drinks are permissible.

I stopped at the info desk to inquire about gluten free food options and was told they have one dedicated frier on the whole park… all the way at the back in the kids zone. But they also had healthy fare locations that would offer some non-fried options too. 


Over the 4th of July weekend we found the park to be maxed out with people and the parking lot full to the outer edges, yet the gluten free cafe, kidopolous, was not open. The go fresh cafe offered a salad. Not exactly the full flavored gluten free menu I was expecting. At least they had unsweetened tea (just about the only non sugary drink option in the park). 

I found a frozen yogurt place on the map and found that it too was closed. In order to find nourishment we went to the nacho stand and I asked to read labels. Even with the long lines I found a nice young man that walked me through each ingredient. We ended up with corn chips, liquid cheese and sour cream. 

I also found a candy store that offered caramel apples. Unfortunately, they wouldn’t just sell me an apple for my son who’s dairy free, without charging me the full caramel apple price.

Truth is, they could make some tweaks in the park that would make more food available for celiacs, like changing the taco seasoning on their nachos to one without wheat (same for the pico). They could verify what the turkey legs are cooked in and make them gf. They could offer cut up fruit at some of their locations. Even a hot dog stand would be helpful (if they didn’t pre-bun them)!


Unless you are Buddy the Elf and can live on cotton candy, Icee’s, spongebob ice cream bars, caramel apples and rock candy, don’t assume you will be able to eat at Six Flags. ūüė¶

@sixflags I’d be happy to help!

Gluten free (west) Chicago, Pt. 3

When traveling to Chicago, we don’t always go downtown. In fact, with family in the burbs, we tend to spend a lot of time in the St. Charles, Geneva and Batavia areas.

There are so many quaint places that have amazing gluten free options out that way. In fact, this is just a few of my favorites. 

Mother’s Pancake House in St. Charles has gluten free pancakes and French toast, which is always a treat! Their gf pancakes are also dairy and egg free. I can’t help but endulge for French toast!


I will also visit Sweet Natalie’s in Geneva for treats. They have an ever rotating variety of baked goods, in a dedicated gluten free facility. Many of their items are also dairy free, as Wells’s other allergens. @sweet_natalies


Dinner usually finds us at Crosstown pub and Grill in Batavia. They have so many options that are unique, creative and tasty. You really feel like they spent some time putting a menu together that would be satisfying. Not just food but libations as well. They carry an array of gluten free beers that would encourage beer lovers to stop in too.


Don’t forget west Chicago and the burbs for gluten free food options. While these are just the highlights, I’m sure there will be more to share in the future. Follow my blog for update notifications!

Gluten free Chicago, Pt. 2

If we aren’t too full from day one, we usually wake up to more of our Do-rite donuts. When we order them, we get two dozen so there’s enough to eat when traveling and freeze the rest when we get home. 


We love to hop on the water taxi for a ride through town. It’s the best way to see the sights and a great way to avoid traffic. Non-holidays are $9 pp for an all day ticket so it’s also economical.

We usually pick up the taxi at the Michigan avenue location (at the base of the Trump tower) and ride it to China Town. In China town we visit Honey Dessert, located in La Mom Kitchen. They offer a unique array of chilled desserts that are gluten free. My favorite is shaved green tea ice and my kids like the smoothies with Boba. 


After our treat, we ride the water taxi back into town and catch a light dinner that is quick and casual. After a long day in the hot sun walking long distances, it’s usually a great time to grab something that doesn’t leave the kids waiting. Snap kitchen is one of the best to fill this gluten free need. @snapkitchen snapkitchen.com or download their app for pre-orders.

You can choose light or heavy, hot or cold and heat them up in the microwaves on site. It’s a grab and go pre-prepared meal haven. In fact, you can purchase meals ( like this lasagna) for the week if you want to!

My trips usually consist of a lot of walking and eating. Hopefully they balance each other out! 

Gluten Free Trader Joes

The staple gluten free items available at Trader Joe’s are endless and cost effective. If you are lucky enough to have access to one near your home or while traveling, you will find consistency in their offerings. 

While on our current trip to Chicago, I was able to score a room at the Homewood suites. We like staying here because one room has a living area with a fold out sofa for the kids as well as a refrigerator, stove and microwave. 

This allows us to pop into Trader Joe’s, pick up some favorites and be prepared for back up meals.

My typical buy list (at home) consists of:

Gluten free rolled oats

Gluten free pretzels

Joe Joe’s Gluten free cookies

BBQ sauce

Gluten free chicken breast nuggets (frozen)

Gluten free multi grain bread

Gluten free cornbread mix

Gluten free mini chicken tacos (frozen)

Broccoli and kale slaw (bag mix)

Organic creamy tomato soup

Taco seasoning mix!!! (I use it for chili too)

Fruit bars (variety)

Individual bags kettle corn

On the road, these help us out:


Add to it their gorgeous and affordable flowers, fresh fruit a plenty and variety of vegetables (chopped, frozen and in fresh picked form) and you have more than enough variety for a cost effective, allergy friendly diet. 

In the frozen veggie section you can also find chopped cauliflower, shelled edamame, shredded carrots, organic corn and more!

Stop in. Grab a list of gluten free options from the desk and shop a plenty!

Light and fresh smoothie

I love the plethora of fresh fruit options this time of year. If you like a think and chunky smoothie, freeze them first. This one was light and refreshing with fresh fruit. 

1 nectarine

2 slices watermelon chunked

1T honey

1scoop protein powder

1C water (or juice for additional sweetness)

This was really light and fresh and didn’t taste like protein at all. Enjoy!

Hearty gluten free smoothie

I need something filling in the morning or I will resort to carbs every time. In my desire to get fit, I’m trying to make healthier allergy friendly food choices. 

This is a smoothie recipe I put together with some of my favorite foods. It blends better than you think and the avocado wouldn’t even be detective by people who avoid eating green things that aren’t a lifesaver.

1 Avocado

1 C frozen berries

1T Honey

1 Scoop Greek Yogurtein Coconut Flavor protein powder

1T Lemon juice

2C water

Blend in magic bullet and drink immediately!

Gluten free meals, fast

I’m convinced that if my life were in TV it would be a timed cooking show. You know… here’s eight random ingredients, two hungry kids and thirty minutes until bedtime… now go!

That’s why it’s always a good idea for me to have gluten free corn dogs, chicken nuggets and frozen burgers on hand.

I’d love to say that I could think of something palatable to make out of avocado, apples, frozen hamburger meat, eggs and almond milk. Chances are pretty good, even if I were to whip it up, I would receive a big, fat “eww gross” from my mini audience.

I’ve vowed to try and take some of my kids favorite restaurant meals and replicate them in house. This will save time, money and the entertainment factor of our traveling road show, at bedtime.

Considering my narrow window for meal consumption, the prep time needs to be virtually non-existent. That’s why most of my meals can be completed in thirty minutes.

A couple of things I avoid when cooking are large prep times and mixing blends of flours. No thank you. I will be utilizing mixes whenever possible.

Check out some of my easy recipes for families on the go!

A hint… my favorite appliance is the
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Gluten free beef and broccoli 

I love Chinese food!

Unfortunately, 98% of the restaurants seem to use gluten filled soy sauce. I usually limit my orders to either mei fun (for the kids) or moo goo gai pan (or other non breaded dishes with white sauce).

Thus, I was inspired to whip up some beef and broccoli with gluten free soy sauce. Like most of my recipes… it’s super easy.

4lb ribeye steaks (if fresh, cut into strips)

4 stalks broccoli (fresh)

1.5c water (or beef broth)

1/4C La Choy Soy Sauce

1/4C Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce

2C frozen onions

Cook in the “magic pot” or //ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=tf_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=gftifshealtht-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=B001A62O1G&asins=B001A62O1G&linkId=1b4e4c2fb1dd2fce64c05d79954757e5&show_border=true&link_opens_in_new_window=true&price_color=e629dd&title_color=e633c8&bg_color=faf5fa Fagor Electric Pressure Cooker for 10 minutes. Put sauce in last, over entire mixture. If frozen meat is used, cut into strips after cooking.

Dip veggies and sauce over the meat in bowls.

Chow.