I am not celiac or gluten intolerant but my kitchen is 99% Gluten Free. My best friend has celiac disease and my husband has a sensitivity, so the majority of my cooking has been gluten-free for the last 8 years.
When you hear the words GLUTEN FREE what do you think of? Most people respond with flour…. which is mainly true… because gluten is a protein found in wheat (regular flour), barley,rye, and oats. If you’re not accustomed to gluten-free cooking and baking I bet you’d be surprised to know that gluten is literally in everything. Soy sauce, spices, condiments, corn starch… the list goes on and on. Now you wont find it in every spice, but you truly do need to read the labels. A lot of products use flour as a filler. Frozen chicken breast with no seasoning might not be gluten-free as there are a number of them that are self basting (pumped with water and wheat). My bestie and I only found this one out because we both worked at a pub together and ordered chicken nachos to share and the cook told us we couldn’t eat the chicken from Sysco because it was self basting, we gave him a funny look and he explained to us that it was pumped with water and wheat… who knew?
Some people believe it’s a fad and this whole gluten ordeal is not a real thing. Trust me it is a real thing, I’ve seen how sick my bestie can get and I have to deal with my husbands abundance of flatuence after having a meal containing gluten or had a wheat beer (for people with milder sensitivities rice beers like Bud and corn beers like Corona might be a better go to on beer nights). I get why some people believe it’s a fad too though because I witnessed it. This one night I was serving, and this guy ordered a draft beer (gluten), a double-decker burger (breadcrumbs in our burger, so gluten) French fries (cross contaminated because we didn’t have a dedicated gluten-free fryer) on a gluten-free bun. Oh and a side of gravy ….. I informed him that everything on his plate including his beer and gravy were not gluten-free, and he said “ya, I know I’m just trying to watch my gluten intake…… Not to pat myself on the back or anything but I’m a pretty good server and when it comes to allergies, or mods I’m normally spot on, but we all have our moments when we screw up. I placed his order and I forgot the gluten-free bun! So I brought his plate out to him and apologized, and yes I get it, it is his right to refuse it because I screwed up and asked for it to be remade which he did…. but ARE YOU FUCKING JOKING ME! It’s because of people like him that this whole gluten-free thing gets such a bad rep at times. Not to mention for the people who are doing it for “weight loss” or because “it’s the in thing” most gluten-free products have a million times more sugar. Next time you want to purchase a loaf of gluten free bread on a whim (not having issues with gluten) look at the nutritional info….
Anyways there are a number of great gluten-free products out there. If you’re in Canada I love Epicure (I also sell it) it’s a company that makes spice blends to promote healthy eating for the everyday busy family, all their products are gluten free, have low to no sodium, their NEVER EVER LIST goes on and on.
Bob Red Mills is another product I use a lot, they have flour blends for everything from all-purpose, to brownie mix, pancake mix etc. Always read their packaging though because they do have a few products that are not gluten-free as well.
Cattleboyz is a great Gluten Free BBQ Sauce. It’s tangy and dark in color, it’s good on chicken or beef and it grills up perfection every time.
Anything that I’ve had by Annies is always good, that brand has numerous types of children’s snacks, mac and cheese, and a whole bunch more.
If you’re ever cooking for someone who is gluten-free/celiac or are just starting your own journey dealing with this diease/sensitvity read the labels of everything you use, because as I said earlier it’s shocking how gluten/wheat is literally in almost everything.