Simple Meal Ideas – Gluten Free

Amy:

My best advice for people with celiac’s disease is to start SUPER simple and work your way up from there.  Start with the Super Simple “S’s”

1. Sunday Suppers – by this I mean

A) Start with a simple meat or meat alternative such as roasted chicken, BBQ-ed chicken, steak, plain tofu, cooked lentils or beans.  Use simple flavour enhancers at first before you investigate safe sauces to use – garlic and onion powder, lemon juice, olive oil, gluten free soy sauce, etc. All Kraft BBQ sauces are gluten free.

B) Add in plain baked potato/rice/quinoa.

C) Serve along with plain vegetables and/or salad, milk and fruit. 

2. Salads – take a big plate of greens and load it up with different gluten free toppings like any vegetable or fruit, cheese, beans, corn, salsa, sour cream, diced cooked chicken, avocado, crushed nuts, etc. Make a basic vinegrette dressing with olive oil, vinegar and a bit of honey. There are a lot of gluten free salad dressings on the market.

3. Stir-fry – start with a protein either meat or an alternate (like tofu), cook until done, set aside.  Fill up a big pan with vegetables either fresh or frozen vegetables and cook until tender.  Mix meat back into pan.  If desired you can use coconut milk and curry powder, some gluten free soy sauce or try some hot sauce for flavour.  Serve over top of brown rice.

4. Sandwiches – for this you would have to use gluten free bread.  Usually it tastes better when the bread is toasted but if you aren’t at home, try toasting at home before you take it with you.  You will need a new toaster that hasn’t seen a piece of wheat bread or use a toaster bag such as “toasta bags” (http://www.amazon.com/Toastabags-Reusable-Non-Stick-Sandwich-Grilling/dp/B001UHNMM0). Use any gluten free sandwich filling that you like, just as before!  Vegetables, cheese, fish, eggs, lean plain meats, condiments that are from a squeeze bottle or jar that has not been CONTAMINATED with a knife in contact with gluten. Other easy GF options instead of bread would be using lettuce as a wrap for the sandwich (nice and crisp!) or using rice papers to wrap around the filling (they just need to be rehydrated in boiling water).  

5. Soups/Stews – first things first is to get rid of all stock that isn’t gluten free – which will be most if not all that you have in your house.  There are a few gluten free broth options in the store, try to find a low sodium version. Kitchen Basics is a good brand. Also trust your soup ingredients and plain spices, salt and pepper to do all the flavouring for you!  Most of your favourite recipes can still be made without stock, just amp up the plain herbs that you use. Use corn starch or potato starch/flour instead of flour for a thickener if needed or even instant mashed potatoes. 

6. Smoothies – a fun way of getting a meal into a glass.  Experiment with different smoothie ideas – including green smoothies (good way to get your greens in) or hearty smoothies with greek yogurt or peanut butter.  Play around with different kinds of fruits also.

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