Gluten Free Groceries

This week, we are sharing a post from the mom of two kids (and wife of hubby) with Celiac and gluten sensitivity. You'll get a chuckle out of her all-too-familiar trials and tribulations as she and her family fly across the world on a somewhat regular basis. She has some great tips that you may not have thought about...and others that are definitely great reminders as we all begin the summer travel season. An expat living in Singapore now, you can find Karen Horan's contributions to the Celiac community in southeast Asia on the websites listed at the bottom of this post. Enjoy...and send us your own stories of gluten free travel! My official title is “Global Domestic Engineer, specialty ‘Human Development’. I have two full time clients who are currently 10 and 13 years old. By my calculations I have roughly 10 years left of full time work, then I can become a consultant on an ad hoc basis. My teenage client was diagnosed with Celiac Disease when she was just 3 years old and her younger brother and father are both gluten intolerant. After many years in my job, I was feeling pretty good at handling a medically... Read more →


As I brainstormed ideas for this blog post, I pondered over what was happening in our family's "gluten free life" right now. It dawned on me that a big part of my own gluten free planning right now centered on working with our son Ryan to plan what food he would pack for a few upcoming camps and camping trips this summer. This isn't our first rodeo...our son has been to overnight boy scout camps for the past few summers, a week-long hockey camp, and many boy scout weekend camping trips in which they prepare their own food. While it's always more work for Ryan to take his own food, we're all getting it down to a science. So I thought I'd share some tips and thoughts, especially with those of you who are doing this for the first time. First off, my recommendation: If you have a choice of where to send your gluten free kid to camp, you may want to peruse our list of summer camps on our CAMPS page on GlutenFreeTravelSite. Each year we add to the list and update the information for the current year. What started as a handful of camps willing to work... Read more →


My older son (not Celiac) loves making chocolate chip cookies. He has tried many different recipes but gravitates back to the traditional Nestle Toll-House recipe, using one of many of our favorite gluten free flour blends as a cup-for-cup substitute for regular flour (so our younger Celiac son can eat them, too!). There are so many wonderful gluten free flour blends these days that it's hard to pick a favorite. Ones we like and use cup-for-cup in both savory as well as baking recipes include Pamela's Gluten Free All-Purpose Artisan blend, Bob's Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten Free Baking Flour, King Arthur Gluten Free Multipurpose Flour, Jules Gluten Free All Purpose Flour, Carol's Amazing All Purpose Gluten Free Flour, Tom Sawyer Gluten Free Flour, and Cup 4 Cup Gluten Free Flour (I've only purchased their Original Blend but am looking forward to trying their new "Wholesome Flour Blend"which incorporates healthy ingredients like ground flaxseeds and rice bran for fiber and healthy fats). Many of these flours are also non-GMO, which as you may know, is increasingly important to me. Last week, my son had the urge to make chocolate chip cookies, and he was planning to follow the Nestle Toll House... Read more →


Wow...I didn't realize it had been a month since I penned my last Blog post. November flew by, and with the Holidays already in full swing, I know things won't slow down anytime soon! Picking up on those particular themes of the Holidays -- and being starved for time -- I wanted to share a few easy seasonal favorites, both new and old. These are tried-and-true things you can serve up without spending hours in the kitchen. Over Thanksgiving, I used two gluten free products I'd tried before....Wegmans own gluten free Honey Cornbread Mix and Aleia's Savory Stuffing Mix. I love these two products -- for both their ease of preparation and for their delicious taste. This time, I cooked the cornbread a bit too long (set the timer, wanted to cook it for just an additional 30 seconds, and then forgot about it in the oven for several more minutes!). Fortunately, it was still decent, just a bit dry and crumbly. But providing you set your timer properly and follow the package directions, it turns out great (as it has for me in the past)...nice and moist. You'd never know it was gluten free. If you're looking for a... Read more →


Whenever our family dines at our local Chinese restaurant, we take along a bottle of San-J's gluten free, low-sodium Tamari Sauce. The chef is happy to use it and knows to make our order in a clean wok using the tamari as a substitution for traditional soy sauce. The taste is indistinguishable. (The cool thing is that San-J also sells individual-sized travel packets of their gluten free tamari, which is perfect when you don't want to -- or can't -- haul your own bottle of tamari around. A while back, San-J also came out with a full line of gluten free cooking sauces that make creating an Asian-inspired meal at home a breeze. I've used their Orange Sauce and Thai Peanut Sauce before, both as a dressing/marinade for chicken -- with great results. Last night, I decided to use their Mongolian Sauce to make Mongolian Beef, which I figured would be a hit with my family. The "recipe," if you even want to call it that, is right on the back of the bottle of San-J Mongolian Sauce. All told, I used 7 ingredients to make dinner: Asian stir-fry oil, corn starch, beef pre-cut for stir fry, the Mongolian sauce,... Read more →


One of the most frustrating things about our son's Celiac diagnosis over 10 years ago was the trial-and-error "tasting" period that followed…(rest assured, all photos pictured below are some of our perennial favorite products, like this deliciously seasoned coating perfect for when you're craving chicken and onion rings!). Even though there weren't nearly as many gluten free products on store shelves as there are now, separating the good from the awful took some time (not to mention a lot of money wasted on products that crumbled and tasted like cardboard!). And it wasn't always intuitive…sometimes it was the companies whose names we didn't recognize (usually dedicated GF companies) whose products were the best. Over the past 10 years, I think it's safe to say we've tried most of the widely distributed (and many less widely distributed) products on the shelves. Thank goodness, overall quality of gluten free products has improved! It's been an adventure…and we've learned a lot. That's why I posted our family's favorite gluten free products listing within the Resources section of GlutenFreeTravelSite. Whether you or a family member is new to the gluten free diet -- or if you're a long-time Celiac but just skeptical about trying... Read more →


What type of gluten free traveler are you? Are you the type that likes to dine out when on vacation -- or do you prefer to get a place with a kitchen and do your own cooking? I know people have strong opinions on this…and certainly, there are those of you who prefer to stay safe by handling most of your own food preparation when on vacation. I, on the other hand, enjoy the thrill of finding new gluten-free friendly spots each time we travel. While it does take a bit of time to do the research to find the best and safest restaurants (I always start by reading reviews on sites like our own GlutenFreeTravelSite), I cook all the time at home and like to leave the cooking to someone else while on vacation. With that said, there are certainly times when we've traveled somewhere where there just wasn't anyplace safe for gluten free folks to eat…and also times we've traveled to a place where any restaurant was hard to find. That was the case this past weekend when our family took a ski trip to Timberline in Davis, West Virginia. Our sons' Boy Scout Troop had planned a... Read more →


Last week, I blogged with much excitement about Wegmans' launch of ready-to-eat gluten free bakery items. Back in early December, they launched two types of gluten-free cookies, gluten-free frosted brownies, and gluten-free cupcakes -- now available at all their locations. They are all made using Wegmans' gluten free boxed mixes, which have been available in their stores for a while now. At the time of the post, I had not personally tried the new ready-to-eat items, but that evening, I happened to be near a Wegmans, so I went in and bought one of everything. Over the next few nights, my husband, two sons, and I taste-tested each of the new items. Here's what we thought: Gluten-Free Cupcakes -- These come four to a pack, with two vanilla cupcakes with vanilla icing and two chocolate cupcakes with chocolate icing. Unlike the photo Wegmans had sent me, the gluten-free cupcakes in the store near us did not contain colorful "confetti" style sprinkles on top. That was actually GREAT with me, as I prefer not to give my kids things with artificial color or flavor, if I can help it. Perhaps they decided not to include these on the cupcakes after all...it... Read more →


My favorite posts to write are those in which I get the opportunity to share news about my favorite companies, stores, or restaurants introducing new gluten free items. Today, I'm thrilled to be able to share the recent news about the new gluten free bakery items avaialable at all Wegmans locations. Yes, you can now enjoy Wegmans Gluten-Free Frosted Pan Brownies, Gluten-Free Cupcakes, Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies, and Gluten-Free Snickerdoodle Cookies. I discovered this just yesterday, as I was perusing my Wegmans MENU magazine (free when you sign up for a Wegmans shopper loyalty card). There in the back of the magazine, on page 135 (almost missed it!), was a brief mention of their gluten free -- yes, gluten free -- desserts! What? When did this happen, and how did I miss it? I'd heard rumblings about this a long time ago, but each visit to Wegmans turned up nothing gluten-free among the amazing ready-to-eat bakery items (save for the supposedly Chocolate Dome in the bakery case, which is good, but still bears a risk of cross contamination, as it's displayed alongside everything else). Turns out, they just rolled out their gluten free cookies, cupcakes, and brownies in early December... Read more →


I like hummus and buy it every so often at the grocery store. Typically I'll buy either a plain hummus or one with fresh garlic added. But I've noticed many innovative varieties of hummus hitting store shelves lately. It's the perfect snack if you're following a gluten free diet (as all the varieties I've seen are gluten free) and a great item to incorporate into your diet if you're looking for more protein and fiber. Recently I was sent a package of four varieties of hummus from a company I wasn't familiar with: Eat Well Embrace Life. Created just three years ago -- in 2011 -- the company has "Americanized the hummus category" by creating hummus from "other beans" (i.e. white beans, edamame, black beans, and lentils). They make many varieties of this "Other Bean Hummus" -- as well as a line of "Better For You Hummus." The ones I tried were divine. From the "Other Bean" category, I enjoyed Tuscan White Bean Hummus with roasted pine nuts and herb topping, Spicy Yellow Lentil Hummus with sunflower seeds and apricot topping (this one definitely has a kick to it!), and Spicy Red Lentil Chipotle Hummus with poblano pepper and corn... Read more →


Every so often, a company sends me samples of a gluten free product to try. Recently, I was contacted by My Dad's Cookies, a company I wasn't familiar with and whose products I'd never seen. I agreed to try them, and WOW...was I glad I did! These are the closest thing to traditional Italian bakery cookies I've seen (and they're gluten free, of course). The box arrived, and inside were small boxes of many of their gluten free cookie varieties: Raspberry Linser, Chocolatta, Black and White, Chocolate Sandwich, Vanilla Graham, Chocolate Chip Biscotti, Lemon Drop, and Chocolate Chip. I was so excited to put them all on a big platter to show my son (actually, both my sons...I knew the non-GF son would be just as excited about sampling as my Celiac son!). Needless to say, they passed our taste tests with flying colors! My favorite were the Raspberry Linzer, and my sons liked the Lemon Drop and Chocolatta (which reminded us of a small, round version of Pepperidge Farm's Milano cookies). My Dad's Cookies was started by Elan Malina to give children with Celiac the same cookie treats they see their friends enjoying. Because these cookies look and taste... Read more →


If you're like our family, you're always looking for healthy, quick, gluten free snacks to grab when you're running from one activity to the next...something that holds up well in a purse or backpack -- or even in the car. Gluten free snack bars -- be they fruit and nut bars, protein bars, or traditional granola bars -- are a popular choice, and you probably remember me reviewing many brands here on this blog over the years. Our family likes most gluten free varieties we've tried, and fortunately, there seem to be new ones introduced all the time. One of the latest product introductions is the line from Annie's, also known for their delicious mac-n-cheese, both in gluten free and gluten varieties. (Another Annie's favoite of ours are their Cocoa and Vanilla bunny-shaped cookies. They have a great flavor and are perfect for the Easter season! They also come in Ginger Snap flavor, which we haven't yet tried.) But back to the Granola Bars... These are true "granola bars," as you remember them (the chewy, oat-based snack bars). There are two varieties -- Double Chocolate Chip, made with real mini chocolate chips, and Oatmeal Cookie, which has a cinnamon flavor... Read more →