Allergy-Free Holiday Food

So it's that time of year. First it was Thanksgiving, then the Christmas parties and now it's almost time for 3+ trips you make to all of your families while they stuff you with gluten-filled, illegal for your tummy food. So what do you do? 

I've learned that the ONLY way for me to stay on track during the holidays is to bring my own food. Nowadays most people are at least use to hearing of gluten allergies so they don't mind, but they still can't wrap their head around my yeast, dairy, egg, almond, and sugar thing. That's when the stares usually take place...

So like I said, I bring my own and I don't care what people think, for crying out loud, if I did eat their food they would feel so terrible with 30 minutes later I'd be cooped up in the bathroom for the rest of the night...that's just not cool for anyone. 

So here are a few recipes I've tried and tested that are sure to help you get through the next few days of holiday madness.

1. Stuffing from Rudi's Bakery (this stuffing is not only gluten-free, but it's free of yeast, eggs, and diary) If you have to stay away from yeast just substitute for the yeast-free bread.

  • 16 slices of  (About 8 cups) of bread
  • 2.5 cups vegetable stock or broth
  • ½  tablespoon kosher salt,
  • ½ teaspoon fresh sage
  • ½ teaspoon fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon fresh parsley
  • ½ teaspoon fresh rosemary
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup sautéed onions 
  • ¼ cup of celery


  1. Preheat oven to 400 °F and cube the bread. 
  2. Spread the diced bread on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes or until lightly golden. Give the pan a shake midway through so the cubes brown evenly. Remove pan and let the bread cool.
  3. Transfer the toasted bread, chopped herbs, celery and onions to a large bowl. 
  4. Now, drizzle a bit of the stock over the bread cubes and gently mix. Repeat until all the bread is moistened but not soggy.
  5. Oil a baking dish, transfer the dressing to the dish and bake for 25-30 minutes or until the top is crispy. Serve warm.

2. Cranberry Sauce - We all know that cranberries (dried and in sauce form) are loaded with sugar. It's crazy, actually. So I usually make a small batch for myself. I grab my mini-crockpot, place a cup or so cranberries in there and a splash of orange juice or a drop of orange essential oil as well as a few teaspoons of stevia. Then you let is cook until the cranberries pop. Super easy and it goes great on the turkey or dressing.

3. Chocolate Tofu Pie - I have to admit I was skeptical about this one, but it wasn't bad. I'm sure it would be A LOT better if I could have used the non-dairy chocolate chips instead of the ones sweetened with stevia, but regardless it was satisfying.

4. Cashew Cream Sweet Potatoes - These were amazing. Enough said.

Tofu Breakfast Casserole

Tofu, I know right?! After watching Clarissa Explains it All I swore I'd never touch the stuff. Well, I consider 29 years pretty good. But I had no idea how great a substitute tofu is for eggs and other dairy items. So since my mom makes breakfast casserole every year I didn't want to be left out. The hubs and I experimented with a concoction of three recipes to get this. And, it was amazing! 

Dairy-free, egg-free, sugar-free, and yeast-free breakfast casserole:

1 firm package of tofu, drained and patted dry
6 slices of Yeast-free, Gluten-free Bread
2 cups of non-dairy milk (We used soy)
1/2 c. vegan cheese (We used Follow Your Heart Cheddar Cheese)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
2 tsp. ground mustard
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 lb of breakfast sausage

1. Preheat oven to 375oF
Grease an 11 × 7-inch casserole dish
3. Cook sausage in a skillet over medium heat until thoroughly browned and crumbled. Remove from heat, drain excess fat, and set aside.
4. Cut bread into small pieces and cover the bottom of the casserole.
5. Cut the tofu into four cubes and crumble into a bowl
6. In the bowl add together the milk, salt, pepper, mustard, and nutmeg.
7. Stir in sausage and cheese
8. Pour mixture into prepared pan, patting down the top for a relatively even surface.
9.  Place in oven and bake for 40 minutes

Thanks to Mama's Breakfast Casserole, Paula Deen's Breakfast Casserole, and Ellen's Breakfast Casserole Pick

5 Must Have Food Items for an Allergy-Free Diet

This week I'm bringing you some AMAZING products for allergy-free diets. I've discovered a few of these and they have significantly changed my outlook on missing old favorites. 

1. So Delicious No Sugar Added Ice Cream - Let's just say, that life will never be the same. I had given up on ice cream a LONG time ago, because even if I found a dairy free alternative it was still loaded with sugar! Now there is a new player in town. This ice cream comes in several flavors and only has 1 gram of sugar!! What?! I know. I've tried the mint chip and butter pecan and so far it's SO Delicious. ;) 

2. Brown Rice Yeast-free Bread by Ener-G - While finding gluten free bread is pretty easy these days, finding yeast-free bread is nearly impossible. I did finally find one yeast-free bread only to get it home and discover it contained wheat. Can we say #fail? But I ran across this guy at Central Market and figured why not. Surprisingly I found it really good. I even had a few slices on my plate for Thanksgiving this year. I will say I had other taste it and they weren't as impressed, but I figure when you are eating yeast rolls at Thanksgiving there's probably not much that can beat that! But for a gluten-free, yeast-free, no sugar added bread this is your choice! It's even better when you slather it with the next product: dairy-free, soy-free butter.

3. Earth Smart Dairy-Free, Soy-Free Butter - I was never a butter person. In fact, I use to hate it! But as I got older I started using butter for toast and of course baking. While I can't tell a big difference from this product I wouldn't be surprised if some butter snobs out there would disagree. Regardless I've used this for my bread and in a few recipes. So far, I'm a fan!

4. Beanitos Chips - I love these guys! I use them to dip into my hummus and for putting in my chili or soup. I love having a little a crunch in there, but don't want to depend on corn. If you're paleo or whole 30 I'm sorry, these may not be for you as they are made from beans...

5. Canyon Cut Kettle Cooked Chips - Just want some salt and something to snack on? Then meet your new best friend. Only three simple ingredients: potatoes, avacoado oil, and sea salt. Just be careful not get any of the other flavors (like cracked pepper) it contains yeast and some other no-nos.

There you have it! My top 5 for an allergy-free diet. I'd love to hear of any products you all have found. Comment below and share a link to your favorite! And stay tuned for next week as I post my Thanksgiving recipes and how I managed to survive two Thanksgiving meals in one day!

Pumpkin Bar Amazingness: Dairy-free, Sugar-free, Egg-free, Gluten-free

That's a lot of free...but you'd never know! So I've been testing out a few dessert recipes and just haven't found one that seems to work yet, until tonight. After an overwhelming amount of ingredients and a long trip to Central Market, I decided to give this recipe a shot.

I didn't have to make any substitutions. The only issue I had was for the frosting. I couldn't find any "healthy" powdered sugar, so I decided to make it anyways with some regular powdered sugar I found in the back of our pantry. I ended up only putting it on half of the pumpkin bars (ya know for the hubs) and it turns out it was even too sweet for him! Needless to say, if you can't do sugar you will be just fine skipping the frosting.

Hope you enjoy these and let me know if you make them! 

For all you Coffee & PSL Lovers.

This has to be the worst season of the year to be on a strict diet. And even worse, when there's so much at stake. The temptations are higher with sugar-filled treats from Halloween to New Years along with PSL, peppermint infused everything, and your mother's famous dishes looming at every party...ugh. But it's not a diet you cheat on. This isn't so you can lose a few pounds, this is so you can be healthy again, strong, and able to live your life pain-free. In other words, no cheating! 

So what do you do when you are tempted?
Bring your own food. Find alternatives. Pray.

Every so often I hope to post about a couple great products I've found that are totally legal and will help you get through the holiday parties. 

If you know me, then you know my LOVE for all things pumpkin, especially lattes. But what do you do when you can't have caffeine or dairy or sugar? Let me introduce you to two products that will revolutionize your world! 

1. Decaf Pumpkin Spice Tea

I simply use my Keurig to make a mug of hot water. (Just run the machine with nothing in it and put your mug below) Then while the tea is steeping I use my espresso machine to steam my almond milk*, add a few drops of vanilla liquid stevia and voila! Pumpkin Spice Latte — Healthy Style.

*when buying almond milk make sure you read all the ingredients. You have to check for sugar and all the words that might mean sugar as well as carrageenan, which is an ingredient that can hurt people with digestive issues. For the best brands I use Trader Joe's refrigerated Unsweetened or 365 Whole Foods refrigerated unsweetened.


2. Teecino 

Teecino is a herbal tea that taste like coffee. What?! I know, sounds sketchy and too good to be true. But thanks to my friend Rebecca who use to work at a organic coffee shop, she was able to introduce me to this amazing new friend of mine. I order it on Amazon because I could get faster shipping and order in bulk for less money. I started to question my decision by the time the package came, but after having my first sip I knew I had found a winner. I opted for the Vanilla Nut flavor, but I'm wishing I would have also got the original as well. 

To prepare I follow the same instructions as above. However, when I'm work I don't have the luxury of steaming my milk so I just add it cold like creamer. I also use less stevia as I found the tea was a little sweet since it already had vanilla in it. 

Hopefully these items can help or at least let you know that if you crave coffee and could not imagine life without the little Holy Spirit's Helper, there are options! And in the recovery phase of the diet real coffee is allowed, so note, it's not forever!


UPDATE: Sadly, I realized that most of Teecino is NOT gluten-free because it contains barley. However, they do have a line that is barley-free.