Allergy Friendly Meals

I had the honor of doing a takeover for @theallergychef on Instagram recently. I marvel at Kathlena; she runs an allergy friendly bakery and hosts weekly livestreaming cooking demos, but she's allergic to most of the food that she creates and has to wear a mask to handle the fumes. In fact, she's allergic to about 200 things but has dedicated her life to helping others in the allergy community who struggle with what to eat. Incredibly admirable. Beyond all of this though, Kathlena is one of the nicest people I have met. 

For my takeover, I shared ideas for breakfast, lunch, after school snacks and dinner.  If you're looking for more allergy friendly ideas, be sure to follow Kathlena on Instagram and check out more from her here, here and here. I recently did a series about Top 8 Allergy Safe Lunches - with a dozen different lunchbox ideas - and you can find that right here

Without further ado, here's a recap of that takeover with some additional information that might be handy: 

Breakfast.

Banana Oatmeal Bars with Dried Blueberries

Banana Oatmeal Bars with Dried Blueberries

Two things about this breakfast: 
1. It's super easy to make. My kids can make this without an adult and call me in to put it in and take it out of the oven. That's how easy it is. Seriously. 
2. It's ridiculously delicious, as well as filling and healthful. Find the recipe here

Two more things I want you to know about this breakfast: 
1. I've added açaí powder to the recipe (as well as dried blueberries). I'm allergic to fish and walnuts, both of which are rich in omega 3s. I do try and put flax into things when I remember but I definitely don't have a reliably steady source of omega 3s. Açaí is an antioxidant that also contains omega 3s, so I like to to add it where I can.
2. Did you know that non organic strawberries may contain fish DNA? I'm not going to get into the topic of GMOs here but for the sake of allergies, I think it's important to pass this information on. Some strawberry crops are genetically engineered with fish DNA to prevent the fruit from frost damage. I was unable to find any information as to whether this genetic modification had any implications for fish allergies. I'm guessing that it doesn't, but honestly, I don't know. I would guess that the anti-freezing trait is passed on with no other part of the fish DNA but I'm not a scientist and I'm not sure. Read more here


Lunch. 

Below are two lunches that are Top 8 Free. They're simple, easy and fun to eat, loaded with colorful, healthful foods and most importantly, safe for allergic kids. 

Top 8 Free pancakes on a stick

Breakfast for lunch + food on a stick = a super fun, delicious lunch! Here we've got some oatmeal pancakes, free of egg, dairy, soy, gluten and nuts (as well as the other top 8 foods) and you can find the easy recipe right here

top 8 free leftovers

This Top 8 Free lunch has leftover roasted chicken wings, hummus and veggies for dipping (I like Ithaka brand because it's free of soy), plus fruit and a carrot cake cookie, made with this recipe. Substitute flax eggs for the eggs and you're set for a delicious top 8 yummy treat! 


Dinner. 

top 8 free meatballs

I make meatballs fairly often. It's one of those dishes that all five of us enjoy, and leftovers are great for lunchboxes so they're kind of perfect. I love that I can switch up meatballs just by varying the meat and the size. But recently I went on a hunt to find a meatless meatball -- and not just any meatless meatball, I wanted a top 8 free meatless meatball. Tall order! 

Confession: I tried 6 different recipes and some of them were such flops that my kids took one bite and almost staged a coup! Then I came upon this recipe and it was a success. Actually, it wasn't a success the first time, and that's because I used regular green lentils, not french green lentils. I can tell you with 100% certainty - it makes a HUGE difference. Serve these beauties with your fave gluten free pasta (my family likes the ones made from corn and quinoa) and some veggies and you're in business. 

Do you have favorite top 8 free recipes that you love? I'd love to hear about them so please share!

Be sure to follow us on Instagram for more meal inspiration and follow along with The Allergy Chef for some amazing allergy friendly recipes, ideas and products. Plus - a huge bonus: she hosts a livestream cooking demo every Monday. You won't want to miss that. 
 

School Lunch Editor at The FeedFeed

I've been busy lately and haven't had the time to sit down to update the blog. But here's some exciting news: I've taken on a new role as an editor at The FeedFeed. I'll be curating their School Lunch Feed, and that makes me incredibly happy! 

Here's what that means for you: you can now find inspiration for packing those school lunches in an additional location. I'll be updating the feed regularly, and many posts will have direct links to recipes. The purpose of the feed is to provide inspiration to lunch packers, with lunchboxes and recipes that make lunch fun, healthy, balanced and easy. Check back often for updates, bookmark the page (https://thefeedfeed.com/school-lunch) or stay tuned for updated feed announcements on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook. I'm always on the lookout for new lunchbox-related ideas to add to the feed, so please email me with accounts you love, or recipes you love and think should be included. 

Here's a sample of the things you'll see on the new FeedFeed School Lunch Feed: 

breakfast for lunch! 

breakfast for lunch! 

Great ideas, with easy to make recipes

Great ideas, with easy to make recipes

Lunchtime classics

Lunchtime classics

Great snack recipes and ideas

Great snack recipes and ideas

Please stay tuned! :) 

 

 

Top Allergy Safe Lunch #12

Top 8 Safe 12

Who says BLTs require bread?! Not us. These bunless BLTs are a fun DIY for kids, who can wrap their bacon and tomato slices inside of lettuce! If you're looking for a bit of a crunch to go along with that, some gluten free corn chips do the trick. This lunch is fun to eat, and fun at lunch is important! Here we've also got kiwi, raspberries, mango and some dairy free chocolate chips. 

Top Allergy Safe Lunch #11

Top 8 Safe 11

Around here, breakfast for lunch is a huge hit. I like to make a double batch of pancakes and either refrigerate or freeze the extras, depending on when my kids plan to pack them for lunch. The lunchroom is a social place, and because of that, a fun lunch experience (like eating pancakes with mini maple syrup) is something I can get behind. 

This lunch is Top 8 Free, so it has no peanuts, tree nuts, egg, dairy, soy, gluten, fish or shellfish. The pancake recipe is below and though my home is not gluten free or egg free or soy free, these pancakes are the ones we make regularly. Yeah, they're that good. This lunch also features coconut milk yogurt, carrots, dried banana, kiwi, raspberries and a sweet note from me. 

Top 8 Free Pancakes

Ingredients:
1 cup oat flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup coconut milk yogurt
1/4 cup water
1 flax egg (1 tablespoon of flax meal + 2.5 tablespoons water)
1 tablespoon maple syrup
2 tablespoons avocado oil, plus extra for frying (feel free to substitute coconut oil) 
1 teaspoon vanilla
optional: 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Method:
Mix the dry ingredients together in a bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together the wet ingredients. Combine the dry and wet ingredients. Add the oil to a frying pan on medium high heat. Spoon in the batter to make the pancake size you desire. When the top bubbles a little, flip them. Fry for another minute or two until done. 

 

Top 8 Allergy Safe Lunch #10

Top 8 Allergy Safe #10

Let's talk leftovers. Don't toss that leftover rice! Fried rice is a fantastic way to use up leftovers and scraps and in fact, it's best when made with cold, leftover rice. The hardest part of making fried rice is the chopping involved, and if you can enlist your kids to help, it's a no brainer. 

This lunch has fried rice made with ham (not deli ham), carrots, broccoli and chives. You can interchange scallions and chives for this recipe, and of course you can use chicken or any other meat in place of the ham. Here's what to do: 
Heat avocado oil on medium high heat in a frying pan and add the veggies. Any veggies will do! Bell peppers, zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower, peas, etc. After about two minutes, add the rice and stir to combine so that the oil is evenly distributed. Add the ham (or turkey, or beef, or any sliced meat) and mix thoroughly. The dish is finished in a matter of minutes! 

This lunch also features raspberries, kiwi and banana oat blueberry bread. Check back to Allergy Safe Lunch #7 for that recipe.