Friday, December 16, 2011

Surviving the Holidays Gluten Free: Part 3

I will be reposting this series in the weeks leading up to Christmas. I pray that this series is an encouragement to you as you deal with being gluten free during the holiday season this year!

Over the past two weeks, we've talked about how to graciously dine in someone else's home when you're gluten free and how to handle dining out when you're gluten free.

Everyone knows that the holidays are focused on food - especially sweets. Unfortunately for those of us who are gluten free, many of those sweets are filled with gluten. Even if you are gluten free, there are still ways to enjoy the sweet treats during the holiday season.

Keep a few store-bought gluten free desserts on hand. I'm generally not a huge proponent of store-bought gluten free products of any kind. I will say that I never purchase store-bought GF desserts for myself. I am occasionally given those kinds of items by other people (who typically feel bad for me...even though there's no reason for them to feel that way!).

I like these Schar cookies and Glutino sandwich cookies. I also like the Betty Crocker GF mixes (they also have other mix options) for a quick treat.

Focus on the naturally gluten free sweets. There are numerous "desserts" that are naturally gluten free, especially fruits and many candies. If you're craving a sweet treat, try eating a piece of fruit. Or grab a small piece of candy or chocolate to satisfy that sweet tooth. Better yet, dip the fruit in melted chocolate and you've got yourself a little piece of heaven!
"Pumpkin Crack Cake"

Make your own gluten free desserts. Try a crustless pumpkin pie. Or try making bars instead of a pie (like these pumpkins streusel bars, made with a GF cake mix, or this "pumpkin crack cake"). There are also numerous recipes out there for gluten free cookies, and most of them are easy to make - and taste delicious! One of my favorite websites for gluten free recipes is Gluten Free on a Shoestring. The recipes are all simple and don't call for strange ingredients. I use Bob's Red Mill gluten free all-purpose flour blend with great success. My favorite cookies are the Double Chocolate Chip Cookies.

And of course, as we all know, sometimes it's best to say "No thank you." Since we could all benefit from fewer sweets and less sugar, sometimes being gluten free gives you a great reason to turn down a treat!

Moderation is the key when it comes to sweets - for everyone, gluten free or not. Find simple ways to satisfy your sweet tooth -- find a way that works for you! Being gluten free certainly does not mean that you cannot enjoy sweets during the holiday season!


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