Gluten Free Cake Mix Sugar Cookies

It’s about that time of year again! Busy shopping malls, beautiful trees and baking…lots and lots of baking. If you are anything like me (other than the birth of baby Jesus of course), this is one of the best parts!! I love to do some Christmas baking for my family and friends when the weather gets cold.

Unfortunately, baking for myself and other people got a little tricky when I changed my diet. I could either make something for gluten free eaters like me or I could bake an entirely different recipe for my family and friends.

Now, thanks to Betty Crocker one cookie fits all! These Cake Mix Sugar Cookies are both delicious AND gluten free!

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Eating on the Fly: A Gluten Free Survival Guide

One of the most frustrating things to do when you have a restricted diet is finding a quick bite to eat. Eating on the fly becomes a test of patience, a nerve wracking gamble and an overall hassle, as many of the typical fast food options are riddled with gluten.

Through both personal experience and researching the reviews offered within the gluten-free community, I have developed a list of fast food options.

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Image Via Wikipedia

Wendy’s has really tried to make eating with a sensitivity easier at its North American locations. They provide an extensive list of menu items and their nutritional/allergen content information. The majority of their salads (and dressings) are gluten free as well as items such as chili and fries. If you have a Wendy’s around, never fear. Those hunger pains will be gone quicker than you can say “want fries with that?”

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Gluten Free Cereal? Yes please!

We’ve all been there. Some nights you get home from a long day at work and you’re just too tired to cook. On nights like these my go-to solution is a big bowl of cereal.

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Image Via Cha Cha

There are now many more cereal options for people with gluten sensitivity. You may be thinking sure they have options, but are they edible? The answer is YES! Many of the big brand cereal companies are now jumping on the gluten free bandwagon.

Celiac sufferers have to be a bit more careful with cereal brands. Some brands that do not advertise as “Gluten Free” may contain trace amounts. If you are highly sensitive you will want to err on the side of caution and pick up a gluten free certified brand like Nature’s Path.

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The Grey Cup Calls for a GREAT Cup of Chili

I’m not a big football fan…it’s not that I don’t like the game, I just never really got into it. My idea of football fandom is crushing hard on the ever-so-sexy Tim Tebow. Never the less, my friends and family get pretty into it and with the Grey Cup rolling around this weekend it will be no exception.

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Image via CFL

Usually when I am hosting on game night I like to serve the healthy stuff, like nachos and a pot of my Dad’s chili. The best part about these dishes is that they are gluten free and no one thinks twice about it!

What You’ll Need:

  • Large crock pot
  • 2 Pounds of ground beef or turkey
  • 3 large cans of diced tomatoes
  • 2 large tins of red kidney beans
  • 2 large tins of white kidney beans
  • 2 Cups of kernel corn (frozen or canned)
  • 2 Packages of Old El Passo Chili Seasoning Mix

Begin by cooking ground beef/turkey until browned, then drain and place into the slow cooker. Next, drain all canned ingredients and add them to the meat. Finally, add your two packages of seasoning to the crock pot and stir well. Replace the lid and cook on medium heat for 4 to 5 hours.

Chili

Image via Old El Paso

Once cooked, turn your crock pot down low and serve your chili buffet style with some nachos and cheese! If you want to really let the flavour out, cook the night before, cool and reheat in the crock pot the next day.

Now get out those pom poms, cheer your heart out and eat up!

Easy Breakfast Ideas

I swear that I am the WORST procrastinator known to man. I don’t start out this way though. I wake up in good time and have my morning routine down to a science, but for some reason I always seem to lose precious minutes in the morning. I don’t know if it’s the 5 different outfits I try on before I decide the first one was the best anyways or the impromptu mirror solo that erupts when Beyonce starts to play in shuffle mode. Whatever the case, I always struggle to grab something to eat before sprinting out the door.

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Image via Kappit

When I began to cut out gluten, eggs and dairy quick breakfasts became especially difficult. I found that the trick was to prepare ahead! Horrifying words for procrastinators everywhere.

Cornbread Muffins for example make for an easy grab on the way out the door. I bake these up on the weekend and have them to eat for the rest of the week! This sounds far more impressive than it actually is, I use a mix that I just tweak to accommodate my restrictions. My go-to mix is Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Cornbread Mix.

To make this Heather friendly, I substitute cow’s milk for soy milk and use my egg substitute power instead of eggs. These changes will not change the taste of your muffins at all! Just follow the full recipe on the back of the package and pop them in the oven for 20-25 minutes the night before!

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Fresh out of the oven!

Another quick option for breakfast is a pre-made smoothie bag. In a zip lock baggie, add in your favourite frozen fruit. If you are not dairy free, you can also fill an ice cube tray with vanilla yogurt. Once frozen, you can add one or two cubes to your smoothie bag.

The next morning, all you have to do is pour the smoothie ingredients into the blender and add in some coconut milk or water until it reaches your ideal consistency. I also like to add in one or two tablespoons of flax seed oil. Blend it up, throw it in a to-go cup and head out the door!

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Image via Sew.Knit.Grow

The trick is to find what works best for you and your schedule, but no matter what always try to eat something before you leave the house. It helps increase your energy levels and jump starts your metabolism!

Let me know in the comments if you would like some more quick breakfast ideas up on the blog. There are tons of options once you know where to look!

The Works: A Gluten Free Burger Joint? Finally!

I have a dirty little secret…I love burgers. I mean a deep eat the fries second kind of love. When I changed my diet I would get so frustrated when I would go out with friends to our local burger joint. They would be sitting there with their lovely greasy platters filled with gluten-esque goodness, while I sat with a leafy salad in dire need of croutons. Until one day when I walked into God’s gift to earth, The Works.

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Image via The Daily Eater

The Works has one of the best gluten free menus for burger lovers. Not only are all of their patties gluten free, they also come in many different forms. Whether you are vegetarian, vegan or a regular meat lover you can find exactly what you’re looking for.

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Image via Pinterest

If that isn’t good enough, the restaurant also offers tasty gluten free buns and 49 gluten free toppings. The only thing you have to watch for is cross contamination in the fryer. Although the fries are gluten free, they are cooked in the same fryer as other non gluten free items. So, if you are highly sensitive you may want to go for a side of greens instead.

Have fun choosing from the extensive menu and bizarre taste combinations! My favourite is the Crappy Tire! My only warning is that once you try it once, you will be hooked!

Eat up!

Bulk Barn Bliss!

The local Bulk Barn was one of my favourite places to go as a kid! The rows upon rows of colourful candies and chocolate left me feeling like I’d walked into Willy Wonka’s factory. Childhood bliss! This love has not died as I have gotten a little bit older, but rather than getting giddy over Skittles and Zingy Zaps I B-line it for the gluten free section!

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Image via The Suburban

This was one of my greatest discoveries when I went gluten, egg and dairy free. It’s often hard to find flours, mixes, pastas and so many other staple products you need at an affordable price.

The gluten free section not only makes it easy to find exactly what you’re looking for, but also allows you to buy the amount you need. This makes experimenting with recipes less risky because you can buy just a little bit at a time. So many gluten free products are packaged in small quantities, but are around 3 to 4 times the price of ‘normal’ alternatives. Bulk Barn’s pricing is highly competitive with local grocery stores on most items and offers a large and consistent selection of products.

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Image via My GI Journey

Some of my favourite products so far are:

Happy shopping!