I’ve had a request from a very special person… Gluten free meal planning! I’d be wrong if I didn’t announce that I really wish I was a meal planner. Adam and I, we like to eat and create things last minute. For example: we are on bare bones pantry right now, but we got to take home a ton of leftover COM group hamburgers and hotdogs this week. My man made us hamburger/hotdog casserole. Was it good? no. Was it edible and filling and a creative way to eat dinner and our leftovers? yes.
That being said, I do have some easy, good, and surprisingly GF meal ideas to share. No hamburgers and hotdogs, promise! Here is a little look into our (my) GF eating. It’s way easier than you’d think.
Note: be sure to check all of the labels to make sure that the things you buy do not contain hidden gluten. Words to look for- wheat, rye, barley, malt, oats (unless noted GF) soy, and anything that sounds like it was made to stick things together (emulsifier, stabilizer, starch, hydrolyzed, etc.)
You can never go wrong with meat, potatoes, veggies, fruit, cheese.
We eat a ton of omelets (onion is my fave), homemade GF pancakes, cheese grits, fruit and yogurt, and luna/zone perfect bars (some Celiac’s have trouble with these, so be careful) for on-the-go.
Hummus- most kinds (check label) with celery, baby carrots, cucumbers, peppers, and/or tortilla chips. Side dishes: mixed fruit, chocolate bar.
Black Eyed Pea Salad- before you turn your nose at this, know that it’s one of my favorite meals. 4 cans black eyed peas (drained), 1 can black beans (drained), 1 red pepper (chopped), 1 green pepper (chopped), 1 yellow pepper (chopped), 1/2 red onion (chopped), 1 jalapeno (optional, chopped), 1 cup red wine vinegar, 1 dash olive oil, 1 cup sugar (start with 1/2 cup and add more until you reach a good amount for your taste buds), fresh basil (chopped), fresh cilantro (chopped), salt/pepper to taste. If you’d like to substitute all those veggies and herbs for a pre-made pico that your grocery store already has, please do so. Mix everything together in a large bowl and serve. Side dishes: tortilla chips. To make this a side dish, serve next to a whopping piece of grilled chicken.
Bagel Pizzas- Udi’s and Rudi’s are the best brands for anything processed GF. They have delicious pastries, breads, and BAGELS. I like to buy a package of these (usually found in the freezer section) to eat with cream cheese or friend eggs for breakfast, as sandwich bread for lunch, or anytime as bagel pizzas. Cut the bagel in half, add pizza sauce and all of your favorite toppings, and toast in the toaster oven or oven until cheese has melted. These are super quick, easy to make, and delicious.
Chicken Salad- I like to make mine homemade, and the easiest for me is buying a rotisserie chicken. I like mine with a lot of salt and pepper, a tiny bit of Duke’s mayo, and red wine or apple cider vinegar. Serve on your favorite flavor of rice cake (or GF bagels or sandwich bread). Side dishes: cottage cheese, fruit, potato chips.
Bird’s lunch- string cheese, apple, peanut butter and banana, yogurt, beef jerky (check ingredients. homemade or local is best), luna bar. Eat scattered throughout the afternoon or whenever you get hungry. I do this often.
Tacos – Corn tortillas, black beans or seasoned ground beef, and all of your favorite toppings. We like homemade avocado salsa, limes, and lots of shredded cheese. A variation might include nachos or layered dip. Side dishes: cheese dip, pinto beans, sauteed mixed vegetables.
Chicken Alfredo- Quinoa pasta, or any of your favorite GF pasta (easy to find and, while not as cheap as wheat pasta, is not too expensive). Homemade Alfredo Sauce. We’ve started substituting rice flour for corn starch, but both do the job well. Grill up some sliced chicken, put on top of your GF pasta and homemade alfredo sauce. It’s the real deal.
Tuna with Tomato Salsa- We made this recipe up because of an awesome meal that I encountered at The Cheesecake Factory. We bought fresh tuna steaks, but any kind will do (cook, of course). Salsa- chopped roma tomatoes, chopped basil, salt, pepper, and capers reduced to a chunky sauce in balsamic vinegar. Cook it down to whatever consistency you please, we like ours on the chunky side. Serve on a bed of THESE MASHED POTATOES.
Pot Roast- This recipe, served on a bed of rice. Note: this recipe calls for marinated the meat overnight in the fridge, so start the day before.
GF Barbeque- This pulled pork recipe, or your favorite barbecue recipe (also, for the first time in my life I am recognizing that there is no real “Q” in barbeCUE. what?) Please make sure that the barbecue sauce that you use does not have gluten. Serve plain, on a bed of rice, or on top of your favorite GF bun (Udi’s!). Side dishes: homemade coleslaw, fries.
Sushi- make your own or takeout. Side dishes: more rice, mixed vegetables, edamame. Please remember: no soy sauce, all you can eat wasabi and ginger.
Other notes: Jaime Oliver has a ton of delicious, healthy recipes. We try something of his at least once a week, most are adaptable to GF or are already naturally GF… check out any of his books from the library. Most anything can be turned GF, even bready things, it’s just more expensive. Try totally eliminating the bread item or substituting it with something different. ex: burgers wrapped in lettuce. There will always be a GF version of your favorites- bread, pizza crust, noodles, even graham crackers. Rice flour tastes the best to me when baking. Everything is adaptable.
Good luck with GF eating! Let me know if you try any of these, or if you need some help. I’d definitely say that, with a little know how, it’s easy peasy and delicious.