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Product Recommendations
Prepared Foods | Baking Ingredients

Through our travels through the GFCF Diet, we found some really great products that make it all much easier. I have listed them here for you. Some things are baking ingredients. Some are prepackaged foods that are wheat and dairy free. I have included web links that show product shots where I can, so you know what to look for at the store. If you are taking the GFCF to the next level, you will want to watch out for other ingredients (like yeast, corn, nuts and soy). I luckily can't stand the taste of aritificial sugars, so you will not find any here - we try to stick with natural sugar or all natural sugar substitutes like Xylitol and Stevia..

Prepared/Packaged foods
Let's start with the packaged and prepared foods, since they are the easiest. I tend to stay away from other common allergens, like soy, corn, peanuts and artificial or processed sugar as much as I can, for safety sake with my sensitive child. Most of these products can be found at Whole Foods - some of them at Safeway or Lucky even. If you don't see the product in your store, ask them to start stocking it. In most cases they are happy to do so - particularly if you are responsible about it and let them know when you stop using a product as well.

Alternative Milks
There are a lot of great alternative milks out there - I am partial to Silk's Rice Dream, myself. I like the plain in cereal, while the kids like the sweeter Vanilla flavor. Too many people have problems with soy (originally created as a cattle crop, I am told) so I didn't even consider soy milk, but Almond Milk (with more protein than the Rice Milk) is also quite good - particularly in baking or with cocoa powder for hot chocolate, where the kids can't see the light brown color. The best these days seems to be Coconut Milk with 50% more calcium than cow's milk!

Bread Stuffs
Bread has always been the hardest - most gluten free breads are heavy and not that good. Most have to be toasted to be acceptable to the kids at all - and since so many of them need to be kept in the freezer, the toasting is important. I haven't tried bread recipes, because baking bread intimidates me. I also recently got to taste Udi's gluten free bread and I was impressed. My youngest ate the whole plain piece of bread she got as a sample and even ate the crust withouth complaining. Remember, bread has yeast in it very often, so if you are taking it to the next level, you might want to get rid of break entirely. Crackers often have yeast, too, but Glutino's makes great crackers that are gluten free. I will also say that Udi's makes a great gluten free pizza crust and now they seem to have partnered with Pizza Hut on it. If you are staying away from yeast, you may want to consider Udi's gluten free tortillas. Quesadillas with just cheese work as a "Mexican grilled cheese" at our house.

Wallaby's Gluten Free Snacks
My kids love Cheezits and Goldfish crackers. We recently discovered Wallaby's Cheese Ups - yes, there is cheese in them, but when the little darlings beg for their favorite snack it is nice to offer something close, but a bit more virtuous. They have a variety of snacks that I have not seen in stores, but based on the reception the Cheese Ups got, I would try anything they make.

Gluten Free Bisquick
I have not tried this, but I am heartened by the manufacturing sector's response for the need for wheat and gluten free products. Now if only Tyson would start making delicious wheat free chicken nuggets!

Chex Cereals
Chex makes a few varieties of gluten free cereals that taste just like they always have. They also have a lot of recipes that are gluten free, but becareful of the other ingredients. Carmel is butter based, right?

Nature's Path Organic Whole O's
Gluten free "Cheerios" made from corn and rice. This is a great baking ingredient (see my chocolaty cereal bars recipe) but they are also great with an alternative milk (most kids love the Vanilla flavored Rice Milk with their cereal) for breakfast.

Finally, gluten free!! This is a great baking ingredient (see my chocolaty cereal bars recipe) but they are also great with an alternative milk (most kids love the Vanilla flavored Rice Milk with their cereal) for breakfast.

Pamela's Cookies
One of the first really good gluten free cookies on the market, Pamela's has expanded into cake, bread, brownie and cookie mixes as well. Our family favorite is the packaged chocolate chocolate chip cookies - delicious!

Kinnikinnick Donuts
One of the hardest things for my autistic daughter to give up with GFCF was donuts. These gluten free, dairy free, nut free doughnuts were a dream come true for her. They do have yeast in them, so she doesn't get them often, but when the craving strikes I often have these in the freezer. Available in several varieties.

Breyers & Dryers All natural Popsicles
Because I like to stay away from corn syrup and processed sugar, I thought I would include our favorite popsicles - Iris loves the lemony flavors best. &

Haagen Dazs Mango Sorbet
If your little one will miss ice cream, I recommend this brand, as it is the only brand (and flavor that I see in my store) with no corn syrup. Sherbet seems like a good alternative to some families, but it has dairy in it, sorry.

Sunshine Heroes Vitamin Supplements
Great, high quality gummy vitamins with no soy, dairy or wheat. We use the multi vitamin and the calcium supplement (super important with no dairy in the diet). I also like the Immunity Elderberry supplement and they have a yummy Omega 3 with DHA product, too. You can find these under Children's Health at www.NaturesSunshineProducts

Tinkyada Rice Pasta
Really good rice pasta in all varieties. Aldente and great if you stick with just 10 minutes of boiling time. & www,

Van's Wheat and Dairy Free Waffles
These are really very good. We put jelly on, instead of butter and they also have wheat and gluten free french toast, which we have not yet tried. A great substitute for the quick and easy breakfast.

Xylitol Candies
Nature's Sunshine has come out with a line of Xylitol candy, gum and chocolate that is delicious. The chocolate still has dairy in it, and gum isn't easy for an autistic kid to understand - but the candies come in raspberry, lemon, mint and cinnamon and they are a terrific reward for herbs well taken. Nature's Sunshine

All Natural Ruffles Chips
I have to say I am loving the all natural FritoLay products. Potato and corn chips with no wheat, dairy, trans fats or additives - easy, easy. It's important to read the labels on our favorite snacks - Doritos usually have dairy, for example - and pretzels are all wheat. Many say Spelt pretzels - which are delicious, but Spelt is a less processed version of wheat and it still contains gluten.

MaraNatha Nut Butters
These are made with no trans fats and the cashew butter is delicious. Great for some of those who can't tolerate peanuts. The trick with these is to make sure you stir it with a butter knife really well before you use it and put it in the refridgerator.

Jamba Juice
With my child's limited diet I like the idea of Jamba Juice, with their nutritional additions. I had stopped going there because they have dairy in so many of their drinks, but it turns out they usually have non-dairy alternatives that are just as delicious. Add an immunity or vitamin boost and your child enjoys a super treat that is oh so good for them.

Baking Ingredients
These products make baking a lot easier. Again, I tend to stay away from other common allergens, like soy, corn, peanuts and processed sugar as much as I can - I don't want to trade one problem for another.

Arrowhead Mills Gluten Free Flours
This company has a wide variety of alternative flours with lots of information. This is the flour I use most - in fact their brown rice flour is the flour I am most comfortable cooking with and usually the flour I used in the recipes I have here. Plus, it's available at my Safeway.

Bloomfield Farms
Bloomfield Farms is a family run company that offers gluten free products from a gluten free, peanut free, kosher kitchen - products like gluten free pizza dough, breading (for chicken nuggets or fried chicken), cake mixes, muffin mixes, pancake, cookie and bread mixes. There are a ton of recipes on the site, too. We've tried many of the products and even the kids love them.

Bob's Red Mill Flour
This company has a wide variety of alternative flours with lots of information - i.e. you should only use Oat Flour to replace a portion of the flour, or some such - and, of course, recipes. Unfortunately, the few recipes I tried from this site I didn't care for - but the Rice Flour and Oat flour is all natural and good quality...and in my Safeway.

Ghirardelli Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
Again, this brand shows no dairy on the label and it's wonderful for baking - see my allergen free fudge recipe - as well as hot chocolate with vanilla flavored Rice Dream or Almond Milk. It won't have the calcium it usually does, but that's where a good calcium supplement comes in.

Guittard Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips
This brand with the rich gold label shows no dairy in the ingredients and it's the only brand I use, really. I can even give the kids a few chips for a chocolate fix - this is a staple in my kitchen. Their web site doesn't show the chocolate chips, but this one does - it's the gold bag.

Hain Pure Foods
Gluten Free Baking Powder

Believe it or not, simple ingredients like Baking Powder or Vanilla can be sources of unwanted ingredients. I use these brands because they are the purest I could find.

Nature's Path Organic Whole O's
Gluten free "Cheerios" made from corn and rice. This is a great baking ingredient (see my chocolaty cereal bars recipe) but they are also great with an alternative milk (most kids love the Vanilla flavored Rice Milk with their cereal) for breakfast.

Spectrum Organic Palm Shortening
I thought this would be hard to find, but it was right in my Whole Foods AND in my Safeway. A 100% vegetable product and works in every sweet recipe I have tried that I use this instead of butter.

Spice Islands Pure Vanilla Extract
Not all vanilla extract is created equally and I have found this one to be the best and purest - it has no corn syrup.

Xylitol All Natural Sugar Substitute
This is the most amazing sugar substitute there is. Made from tree bark, Xylitol looks, acts and tastes just like sugar. It is nutritive and good for your teeth even - our local dentist has been giving away Xylitol lollipops to her littlest patience with great results - and it doesn't amp up the kids. You can find it in Whole foods or get it online like I do, from Nature's Sunshine, who also offer a line of candy, gum, chocolate and mints with xylitol in them that are great.

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| Carole Cherry