Welcome to this new world of eating! If you are new to the gluten-free diet, it can be a bit overwhelming without a doubt. This website was designed to educate you about gluten-free living and how to properly stock your newly gluten-free kitchen. If you are thinking about trying a diet free of gluten or have recently been diagnosed with Celiac’s or are suspicious that you have an intolerance towards that pesky G word, the following list is a helpful list as to what ingredients you need to avoid. Keep in mind that this list is not definitive and that there are foods in which you will need to be a gluten detective with (ie: some seasonings and beauty products have hidden gluten in them):
√ Durum flour
√ Graham flour
√ Brown rice syrup (can have barley in it)
√ Triticale (wheat and rye product)
√ Imitation seafood & meat
√ Soy sauce (can be gluten-free)
√ Textured Vegetable Protein
√ Brewer’s yeast (beer)
√ Wheat germ
√ Matzo flour
I know that it this list can seem a bit long and almost like The great news is that gluten-free living today offers so many choices and options that you won’t feel like you are missing out on anything. No, you cannot eat the bread that is served on the table at your favorite restaurant but that doesn’t mean that you will never eat a crumb of bread again. You can start exploring with your own gluten-free bread making at home now by following this Gluten-free Flour Guide and start learning how to create your very own all-purpose mix. I have even taken out the guesswork for those with little time to experiment. Here is a tested and approved Sandwich Loaf recipe. Or what about Cranberry Orange Bagels? That’s right. You don’t have to sacrifice your taste buds just because you are sans gluten. Not only are there comparable versions out there but the new food you will be exposed to will enlighten you and your belly! Think of this new way of eating as a chance to start to experiment in your kitchen and become more creative with your food. Here is a guide to the incredible foods your diet can introduce you to:
Mung Bean: Great for sprouting or extracting the starch to make noodles, thickener or pastes. They also are great additions to soups. Biggest benefit of the mung bean? They’re easy to digest, which our bellies thank us for.
Green Lentils: Lentils are such a great staple to have in the cupboard. they make an excellent addition to soups that are stocked with veggies and lots of leafy greens.
Wild Rice: The colors are beautiful and give off a nutty flavor for any dish. Cook: 1 part rice, 2 parts liquid (try veg broth as your liquid–you will love the flavor!)
Black-Eyed Peas: For those of us who do not eat meat, black-eyed peas can be a great filling dish packed with tons of protein. Try using a slowcooker for these and add some garlic, water, salt and a bay leaf or 5.
Cornmeal: I use Bob’s RedMill brand and have been very pleased. I made an extremely tasty cornbread muffin that turned out beautifully. Cornmeal is also used for polenta or as a great added flour in all purpose mixes to give it that hearty flavor and texture for muffins, breads and pancakes.
Quinoa: A staple in my diet due to its versatility, health benefits and great nutty flavor. I usually make a bean salad with quinoa, drizzled in citrus juice and lots of cilantro. Even tastes great as a hot cereal substitutes. Cooking preparation: 1 part quinoa, 2 parts liquid. Try simmering in vegetable broth.
Brown Basmati Rice: Okay, I think we all know brown rice but have you tried basmati brown rice? Eh? Eh? Nudge, nudge. It’s a longer grain and the taste is something I prefer over regular ol’ brown rice (though that is a great choice as well!) To cook use 1 part rice per 1 part water (example: 1 cup rice with 2 cups water).
Chia Seeds: These little magical wonders are just that. Magical. Try putting a tablespoon into your oatmeal and see what happens. Want a spoiler alert? It puffs up like tapioca acts like a gelatin. I also love using them as an egg replacement for baked goods. Mix 1 Tbsp. with 3 Tbsp. warm water for 1 egg and let the slurry begin!
Yellow Split Peas: Add it as the thickening base for soups, throw them in for a nice, chewy texture to broth based soups, curry them up. However you serve it up you will find this pea variety to be a hearty, filling choice for your next meal.
Chickpeas (aka: Garbanzo Beans): Oh, if only I could write a love poem to garbanzo beans! Chickpeas are my favorite bean variety. They are so versatile and their uses are endless: hummus, meat substitutes, falafel, roasted as a snack, thrown in salads…and on and on. Start using your creativity for this precious little piece of bean.
Red Quinoa: I went up to Paso Robles, CA (heaven on earth!) and dined at a local restaurant that literally served foods that came fresh from their farm to the table. One of their menu items was a salad that was drenched in red quinoa. It was divine, not to mention a great way to use this grain! The red version packs a greater crunch than the white version.
Red Kidney Beans: I love to use this bean in a 3 bean chili mix. The meatiness of the kidney bean adds volume and flavor. It also tastes great to add to salads.
Black Beans: This is my go-to bean if I am looking to stuff veggies, make (or attempt to make) a bean burger, and anything spicy and Mexican-themed. It pairs beautifully with cumin to mimic a meat-like flavor and it’s high in protein and good stuff for your body.
Flaxseed meal: This has become one of my go-to egg replacers. It’s nutritious, it adds a beautiful brown hue and emits a lovely wheat flavor in your baked goods. It’s also great in whole seed form for throwing into your smoothies, oatmeal, or cereal. For egg sub use: 1 Tbsp. meal + 3 Tbsp. warm water.
Adkuzi Bean: Another item that your belly will thank you for, the adkuzi bean is one of the more easier to digest beans. It is also a great substitute for black beans. Try making a burger from these guys–you will find the nutty, sweet flavor definitely interesting and worth trying!
Millet: Nutty, easy to digest. similar to couscous. I have used millet for skillet cakes, a side dish and yup, you guessed it, stuffed inside veggies. My fav? Simply as a side dish, cooked in veggie broth, sauteed with garlic and onions. Sometimes simple is better! Cooking prep: 1 part millet, 2 parts liquid (brown in skillet first for 5 min., boil, simmer covered 15-20 min.)
Black Quinoa: Surprise, and yet another color to quinoa! I love buying the tri-color quinoa variety to get a nice mix of the white, red, and black. Again, follow the same cooking instructions as you would with the others.
Anasazi Bean: Isn’t this bean just adorable? But it must be eaten so when I feel like a different variation on a Mexican dish, I like to use these beans in place of black or pinto beans. You will find that they are quite comparable to the pinto. Oh, and rumor has it, they make you toot less. Could be a selling point?
Madagascar Pink Rice: I like this rice because I sound like i am cultured. “What did you eat for dinner last night?” “Oh you know, the usual. Pink rice from the mountainous regions of Madagascar, lovey!” ←just so we are clear, I have never been to Madagascar, nor do I even know if it has a mountainous topography. Seriously though, try this rice. It is a mild one–maybe as a rice pudding?
Lima Beans: I love the almost buttery flavor lima beans give. My favorite way to eat them is simply on their own. Maybe with a tad of non-dairy butter, seasoned with salt and pepper. Easy enough.
Arborio Rice: It’s a very short grained, white rice–the perfect usage is in risotto, according to my preference. It is the only way I cook with this rice actually.
Navy Beans: Mmmmmmmmm. Small. Flavorful. Gets a beautiful creaminess to it when you slow cook these guys on low heat over a long period of time. Throw in water, onion, garlic, herbs, bay leaf, salt and cover. You will love the creamy bean medley that occurs.
Canario Beans: Creamy like the pinto bean. You can use it as a substitute or even try it mashed up like refried beans. These beans also work nicely in soups for added protein. Lovely, I must say.
Quinoa Flakes: I will say that the flakes do some serious hard work in your baked goods. They make them hearty and moist (I hate that word!) You can also use them as a substitute for your morning hot cereal routine. Add a dash of brown sugar, honey, or agave and maybe some non-dairy butter. Mmmm….
Green Split Peas: Does this really need explaining? Split pea soup anyone??? YES PLEASE! End of story.
Rolled Oats (GF): Oats actually are gluten-free naturally. It’s just the way in which they are treated in the manufacturing process that you have to watch out for gluten. I buy Bob’s RedMill brand and am happy as a clam (how do we know that clams are happy, by the way?) using them as my breakfast.
Red Lentils: A great ingredient when cooking with Indian flare! These guys tastes beautifully with coriander, ginger, garlic, cilantro, lemon and tumeric (if you do not have tumeric in stock, run, don’t walk, to the store and buy some!)
If you have any more questions feel free to ask away in the comments section or check out the Gluten-Free Vegan Baking Tips page to further help you figure your way around your newly stocked kitchen!