Monday, February 13, 2012

Review - Gluten Free Favorites

When starting out on the gluten free path, it can be overwhelming.  Overwhelming AND expensive actually.  Baking those sweet treats and pasta are often the most difficult to give up.  (What DO you eat for breakfast other than scrambled eggs when you're gluten/dairy free, anyway?  *shrugs*)

Most local grocery stores and finally, even Wal-Mart, are carrying large amounts of gluten free products.  The only thing I'm not thrilled about with nearly all gluten free products is that wheat is replaced primarily by corn with rice as a close second.  "What's corn good for?" Our nutritionist will ask you, "Nothing, other than to make cows fat."  *smiles*

So even though these items are tasty, we still have to eat them in moderation.  Funny, at first all I could think was, "FINALLY, there's SOMETHING I can actually EAT that's not meat or vegetables!"

Well, here are some my personal favorites.  Hopefully this list can save you from a headache when you're out shopping.  And save you a few dollars too!  Oh, and don't forget to check the mark-down section of your grocery store.  Often it's tucked away in a corner on a shelf or tables.  Frequently, you'll find gluten free or organic products at a great price buried there!
  • Udi's Chocolate Muffins - They freeze well!  Perfect for that chocolate fix.  Can be found at Amazon or your local store. 

Udi's Gluten Free Double Chocolate Muffins (1 Case)

  • Udi's Oatmeal Raisin Cookies - They also freeze well.  Taste like the "real" thing!  Certainly a comfort food.  Can be found at Amazon or your local store.

  • Rudi's Multi-grain Bread - This tastes the most like "real bread."  Soft.  Toasts well.  Found online or at your local store.

Rudi's Multigrain Gluten-Free Sandwich Bread

  • Hodgson Mill Pancake and Waffle Mix - We sweeten these with Agave and fresh blueberries!  Top with maple syrup and yum!  Can be found on Amazon or your local store.

Hodgson Mills, Mix, Pancake / Waffle, Gf, 8/16 Oz

  • Hodgson Mill Apple Cinnamon Muffins - We sweeten with Agave.  These do not save for very long and tend to be a bit "heavy."  Can be found on Amazon or your local store.  

  • Bob's Red Mill Corn Bread Mix - Even if you're not GF, you will LOVE this corn bread.  It's better than any other box mix - amazing.  Can be found on Amazon or your local store.

  • Tinkyada Brown Rice Pasta - This pasta is the BEST GF pasta we've tried.  (We've tried Tinkyada's other varieties as well, they're great!)  It cooks well - even if you over cook, it's just fine.  Taste is marvelous.  Can be found on Amazon or at your local store.

Tinkyada Brown Rice Elbow Pasta -- 16 oz
  • Annie's Mac and Cheese -  If you're ok with including dairy in your diet Annie's will satisfy that quick mac 'n cheese craving around lunch time.  Taste really isn't far off from the traditional "Kraft" taste.  (And sometimes you can snag 'em for $1 each on sale!)  Can be found on Amazon or at your local store.

  • Larabars - If you're a fruit lover, you'll enjoy these quick snack bars.  The flavors are subtle.  Ingredients simple and straightforward.  Can be found at Costco, Amazon or your local store!  (And do look for the sales.)

Larabar Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip -- 16 Bars

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Valentine's Mantel and Napkin Wreath

With most of my decor still in boxes, it's a challenge to decorate.  Thus far, my mantel is the only thing I've tackled.   There's not one picture hanging on a wall anywhere!  Granted I'm enjoying the de-cluttered look, and am trying to take this time to scour Pinterest for ideas.

We've owned this home for about 6 months.  2 of those months we were not living in the home - smashed out walls and cabinets, torn out flooring and fresh paint kinda made me stay out.  *smiles*  Then, a couple weeks after moving into a home with renovations still in progress, I hit my head.  And now, I am under doctor's orders to do as little as possible.  Having a concussion sure takes a toll on one's life!  3 months down - and doc says 9 more to go!  *sigh*

Here's what the mantel has looked like since we got here...

Original mantel was finished wood.

We painted the mantel white to match the new crown moulding we  put in  the living room!

And yes, there was a Christmas mantel.  But Miss Concussion Brain forgot to take a pic!  This is the only pic I took of my Christmas decor.

This is my Christmas napkin wreath!  It's one of the most easiest projects I have ever tackled!

Simply get cocktail napkins (dinner napkins if you'd like) and unfold them.  Next, grab the middle of the opened napkin - like you're going to use it as tissue paper in a gift bag.  Twist the "end" just a tad and tuck it into your wreath!

It'll take 1-2 packs of napkins, depending on how full your want your wreath/the size of the wreath.  Play around with color combos, solids or even a rainbow!

As you can see, for Valentine's Day I merely squashed in a few pink napkins and added a heart!  Since my daughter's craft supplies are basically my only unpacked supplies, I find myself raiding them all the time!  This adds a bit more whimsy than I usually use, but since there IS a young child in my house, it works!

Art in the back was made by my handicapped Aunt, and given to family members one Christmas!
Share a link on this post if you ever decide to create your own napkin wreath!  Maybe in the colors of an upcoming baby or wedding shower?  It's such a cheap and simplistic way to get a lot of "wow!"

Happy Valentine's Day!

P.S. Linking up to...


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