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LouiesMom

New To celiac disease...recommendations For Convenience Foods?

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Hello to everyone...my 14 year old son and I are new to the world of celiac disease...while it will take us a while to get used to the new life-style change and finding things that are gluten-free, can anyone recommend some "convenience" foods that will tide us over until I get the hang of finding things that I need to while at the grocery? Even quick, easy, simple things to make for him in the meantime would sure be appreciated. Thank you so much...Louie's Mom

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My wife makes me chicken tenders that are great. She rolls them in cornmeal and fries them. I eat them straight, put them on salads, etc. Sure are good.

Another good idea would be to get some gluten free pasta. It is easy to prepare. You may have to change sauce brands if your current one is not gluten free.

Fresh fruit and vegetables are also great snacks. My favorites are bananas and baby carrots (not together!).

WH

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My wife makes me chicken tenders that are great. She rolls them in cornmeal and fries them. I eat them straight, put them on salads, etc. Sure are good.

Another good idea would be to get some gluten free pasta. It is easy to prepare. You may have to change sauce brands if your current one is not gluten free.

Fresh fruit and vegetables are also great snacks. My favorites are bananas and baby carrots (not together!).

WH

Pasta is a good idea, but it may take some trial and error to find the kind you like. I think the general consensus on the board is Tinkyada brand is the best. But my family really likes Mrs. Leepers corn spaghetti.

We stick with the whole foods mostly (fruits & veges & meat) but my kids like tuna salad, chicken salad, and egg salad (kraft mayo and Hellmans are both gluten free).

A Taste of Thai makes some good convenience foods (ready to pop in microwave type things) that are labeled gluten free (Not all flavors are gluten free). Denty More Beef stew in a can was also gluten free last time I checked.

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Here's my list:

Taste of Thai Noodle Carts-- all are gluten-free

rice-- either boil bags or normal

- add a can of kidney or pinto beans and salsa for a tasty snack or side

- make with Herbox or regular stouffers chicken broth

- Throw in a bag of frozen veggies in the last 10 minutes

baked potatoes

salt potatoes

nachos (check the tortilla chip brand-- Tostidos are fine)

Envirokidz cereal

NottaPasta with spaghetti, alfredo, or cheese sauce

Tinkyada pasta (fun shapes and tastes like real pasta)

Gultino pretzels

baby carrots

fruits and veggies

eggs

corn tortillas to be used as bread, for quesadillas, or breakfast burritos

Fruit leathers (aka dried fruit strips)

As far as meals go, I normally make up a thing of rice, potatoes, or pasta for and divide it into tupperware so I can have some starch each day. Then I grill meat on a George Forman grill (fast and easy), and steam up veggies.

If you want easy gluten free normal food for the whole family, some things my bf's family have found are: enchiladas, hard tacos, chili, bbq chicken, chicken scampi, stir fry (with La Choy or another gluten-free soy sauce), hamburgers, and either of the pastas mentioned above.

Good Luck! It really isn't that hard once you get used to it.

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Some good suggestions above. I will also add Dinty Moore Beef Stew and Hormel and Stagg Chili (Read the label because not all of them are gluten-free).

Just a caution - no matter what list of safe foods anyone provides to you, you have to check the label EVERY TIME you buy something. Product formulations change all the time, and what is safe today may not be safe tomorrow. THis sounds like a daunting task, but once you find your favorite brands/products, it will go pretty quickly.

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The convenience foods that we like are cheese quesadillas (made with corn or brown rice tortillas), peanut butter on gluten free toast or Glutino crackers, cream cheese on the large Ener-G crackers, Kettle chips (most are gluten free, check the label), pizza with Kinnikinnick pizza crust, Trail mix made with Health Valley corn crunch-ems, craisens, marshmallows, etc, and Tinkyada pasta made into spaghetti, alfredo, or mac & cheese. Pasta or pizza is the closest we get to fast food. It's hard to remember that we used to eat out three times a week. I'm glad we don't have those eating habits anymore, but I sure miss it some days.

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I agree with most of foods on previous posts (like glutino pretzels, love those!). I only have a few to add:

Planters Peanuts (I get the mini bags, at Sams. They come 40 to a box. I carry the little baggies in my purse and gym bag)

Nana's No Gluten Chocolate Munch Cookies

EnerG Crackers

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There are times I walk in the door hungry and tired and for those times I have one of Amy's frozen meals that are gluten free. I won't eat the pizza though because it doesn't sit right with me. I just bought the Ian's chicken nuggets but I haven't tried them yet. This will happen about 2 times a month where I used to go to fast food places but I don't anymore.

Otherwise I my simpliest meals to make are chicken breast, or hamburger,or pork chops with rice and vegetable.

Mashed potatoes only takes about 30 min. also.

Tuna melts on G.F. bread.

In the winer I have some frozen soups in my freezer from leftovers.

Red beans and rice with sausage. Real simple. We love hot sauce on top.

Just make rice and heat up a can of red beans. A good sausage isn't hard to find.

Ham and chesse pannini, or ham with scalloped potatoes. Make white sauce with corn starch. It takes an hour to bake however.

Hot dogs and mac. and cheese. There are G.F. brands.

Chile is easy and fast.

Make chicken chile. Use chicken broth, white beans, can of chopped green chiles, breast meat cubed up, onions and celery, cumin.

This is my list of quick meals. Everything else I make takes time.

Gail

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Oscar Meyer Weiners and Bush's Maple flavored baked beans - If you simmer for a while they're really good together

Mission corn tortillas wrapped around Oscar Meyer lunch meat and Kraft singles cheese (Kraft mayo is safe too)

Kinnikinnick donuts (www.kinnikinnick.com)

Kinnikinnick bagels (Philadelphia cream cheese is safe)

Cracker Barrel cheddar cheese and Glutino crackers

Tinkyada pasta and Cheese Whiz (season with pepper and garlic to taste)

Tinkyada pasta and Classico spaghetti sauce

Amy's frozen meals (check label)

Envirokidz cereal (I love the peanut butter panda puffs)

Gluten Free Pantry skillet meals (good for the whole family)

Mrs. Leepers skillet meals (good for the whole family)

Taste of Thai meals (check for gluten free label)

Progresso soups (check labels for wheat, barley, rye, or oats)

Gluten Free Pantry muffin mix (amazing with blueberries)

Gluten Free Pantry brownie mix

Kinnikinnick cheese tapioca bread (MUST be toasted!)

McCormick spices and rubs (check label for WBRO)

Fresh meats

Fresh fruits

Fresh veggies

If you have a Super Walmart in your area, it's worth the drive out there. Their GV brand puts gluten free right on the label. That's where I do ALL my shopping now. You can save a lot of money by being able to buy the generic brand of things. Plus, it really opens up some new foods since you don't have to call the company every time.

I would also suggest buying a few good gluten free cookbooks to get you started. I still use mine all the time for baked goods. I recommend Incredible Edible Gluten Free Food for Kids by Shari L. Sanderson and any book by Bette Hagman. Those are my favorites. The cookbooks are a really big help in the beginning so you can see how many delicious foods you can still have.

Someone posted a pizza crust recipe a while back that is absolutely amazing! Do a search for NY style pizza or foldable pizza. It's the most amazing pizza recipe ever! :)

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Things that I take with me when I go out and about and don't know how long I will be gone is dried fruit, banana chips, trail mix of nuts and things, I also love Glutino meal or breakfast bars. Otherwise fast on the go things I take to work is fruit, Oscar Meyer hot dogs, salad greens.

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Convience as in fast foods:

Wendy's has a list of gluten free food on their website - www.wendys.com

and Chick-fil-A, www.chickfila.com.

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Wendy's is great for gluten-free. My other favorite fast food place is Taco Cabana but I don't think you have those in Ohio. Taco Bell is not to be trusted.

When you go to the store many regular groceries are gluten-free. Always check the labels. I've found the same brand of canned beans on the shelf, one can has gluten and the other doesn't. I find the Hormel list a big help:

http://www.hormel.com/faq/faq.asp?id=37072...uerytext=gluten

Plain Tostitos and salsa is a good gluten-free snack. So is plain popcorn, my favorite is the 365 brand at Whole Foods. Fresh fruits and veggies are healthy but probably not popular with a 14 year old. Also, my Kroger carries gluten-free waffles and Amy's frozen dinners in the freezer case and Pamela's and Bob's Red Mill mixes on the "Natural Foods" aisle.

My favorite gluten-free speciality items are

  • Chebe Bread (makes great pizza crust and little rolls that taste like a deli bread)
    http://www.chebe.com/
  • AltiPlano Gold instant quinoa (like instant oatmeal but gluten-free & healthy) http://altiplanogold.com/index.htm
  • Tinkyada pasta
  • Namaste is the best value for cake mixes - one package makes a 2 layer cake or 8-1/2x11.

For loaf breads, I've tried several bread mixes and the Pamela's Amazing Wheat Free is the best IMO (I know everyone has their favorite mix or recipe). Although I wasn't paying attention this weekend and I found that when they tell you to take it out of the pan after 10 minutes, there's a good reason.

Check Amazon for gluten-free products. (www.amazon .com) They frequently have the best prices and they have a link just for gluten-free foods. Look under Gourmet Foods on the left of this page near the bottom, under Health & Natural Food for the link that says Gluten-Free Products.

p.s. If you try Chebe, realize that it needs to "breathe" after baking. Wrap it in a cotton tea towel and set it in a basket or colander for 12-24 hours. If you try to put it away immediately (like you are advised to do with rice based bread products), it gets gummy. But it travels well, tastes good and doesn't fall apart.

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Thanks to all of you who replied to my plea!! All of the above are great ideas and will for sure help me over the next few weeks. How nice to have such helpful people in times of great need!! Thanks again...Louie's Mom

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Gosh KarenB, you do good work. Thank you for you time. :) You are a wonderful example of good people doing good things. Cheers to you!

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Gosh KarenB, you do good work. Thank you for you time. :) You are a wonderful example of good people doing good things. Cheers to you!

You just made me realize there's no emoticon for "blushing". :-) Thank you. We pay forward the help we've received to the new Celiacs. The first year after my diagnosis, I tried to go gluten-free with just reading and it was much harder than it had to be.

You get more dynamic information by discussing the diet with people that are doing it. Going to our local group helped me a bunch, this place has too. It's hard enough to just get the diagnosis. The diet doesn't have to be that hard if you just have some help.

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