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KathiSharpe

Eating Out

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My husband and I eat out - a lot - often with friends. I can "usually" find something gluten-free on most any menu, but not always - and I'm not always certain the kitchen can avoid cross-contamination.

So I was thinking - what if I packed some foods along? They'd need to be light and totally non-perishable.

I can always order a salad, but plain salad is nasty after you've eaten several of them, and restaurant meats do tend to be glutened. But if I could add some canned chicken or something to it, maybe? (is canned chicken gluten-free?)

Or what about some small noodles that could be reconstituted in hot water? (Do such wonders exist?)

Anyone have other ideas?

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My husband and I eat out - a lot - often with friends. I can "usually" find something gluten-free on most any menu, but not always - and I'm not always certain the kitchen can avoid cross-contamination.

So I was thinking - what if I packed some foods along? They'd need to be light and totally non-perishable.

I can always order a salad, but plain salad is nasty after you've eaten several of them, and restaurant meats do tend to be glutened. But if I could add some canned chicken or something to it, maybe? (is canned chicken gluten-free?)

Or what about some small noodles that could be reconstituted in hot water? (Do such wonders exist?)

Anyone have other ideas?

Another question to add to this is where do you buy little individual packets of safe salad dressings that don't need refrigerated?

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Hormel canned chicken is gluten free. It says so on the label. I have seen small, single use tubs of salad dressing at my local grocery stores. You could always pour a bit of the salad dressing you have at home (at know is safe) in a small tupperware type container and bring that with you.

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Hi,

What a great question! I'm a longtime gluten-free, milk & dairy free, and no egg whites, yeast, casein or whey person. I go vegan for long periods of time, but if I crave protein I'll sometimes eat chicken or fish. I've taken bags of food, boxes of food, ice chests full of food, and containers of food everywhere I've gone for years. My first recommendation is to make sure your bag has a plastic lining, or is at least solid enough to withstand spills (I speak from experience, believe me). I'm constantly on the lookout for foods and containers that meet our needs.

I always save little bottles in which to put salad dressing, having learned the hard way that the lids on plastic containers can come undone. Once you start thinking of these things, you'll see bottles and containers at every turn that work great. Now, what to take?

I have a large container in my car that holds drinks, dried beef jerky, gummy worms and treats, water, etc. for my grandson, but I could eat them if I was stranded in hours of traffic or had an emergency. I have a small ice chest that I put cold drinks in or fruits/vegetables that I want to keep fresh in the car.

When I go to a restaurant I usually take a salad with as many ingredients as I want, or cooked vegetables that the restaurant doesn't offer, or dairy-free margarine, or Mrs. Dash Seasoning, or Stevia (a plant-based sweetener), or anything else that I think would taste good. The possibilities are endless. I used to bake cookies and desserts and would take those, but lately I've felt called to eat more raw foods so I stay away from goodies.

Let your imagination be your guide, and I want to say that when you have the courage to take your own food, your assertiveness in all areas seems to increase, since you are no longer concerned with what others are thinking or saying about the way you eat. I even take my own food to family gatherings on holidays, since there is no way others can keep track of what I'm eating today. I want to wish you the best as you travel this path. Welda

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This site sells travel sized items. http://www.minimus.biz/foodmain.aspx If you type in gluten-free in the search box a few items will come up but many more items are gluten-free.

tuna in cans or pouches

nuts

shelf stable pudding or gelatin cups for dessert

Enjoylife sells packs that contain just 2 cookies in them-snickerdoodles or choc. chip and MiDel sells small snack packs of oreo style cookies

individual salad dressings

there is a brand that sells individual packs of rectangular crackers-they are a little more expensive but good for travel

In the absence of a safe dressing, I sometimes ask for lemon wedges and lightly salt and pepper my salad, squeeze the lemon on and toss with a bit of mayo.

I too am one to pack a meal and bring it with-I did it for a Christmas dinner that was catered and the caterer couldn't be contacted and it was clear that they could not have accomodated me. I've also done it a couple of times when a group chose a place where the staff were not native English speakers and the cusisine was unfamiliar and I didn't have enough notice to research it. Everyone ordered plenty so I didn't feel bad telling the waiter I had food allergies and wouldn't be ordering.

Target sells some nice insulated, even fashionable, lunch bags for adults as does Whole Foods recently and even our local chain grocery stores. Some come with the containers even.

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