Recipe: Protein Cookie Dough Dip


via Amazon Kitchen Shorts.  Recipe for a Chocolate Cookie Dough Dip using chickpeas as a base.  This could easily be made gluten free using gluten free peanut butter, agave and cinnamon.

Protein Cookie Dough on Amazon Kitchen Shorts

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Trip Report: Gluten Free in Siesta Key!


My family and I recently took a Spring Break Trip to Sarasota Florida and the Siesta Key Beach area.  I was very pleased with the gluten free options in the area.  Here’s a rundown of some of the highlights…

  1. Island Gluten Free Bakery – This dedicated gluten free bakery is filled with a couple things… 1. Extremely nice people and 2. Awesome gluten free baked goods.  Chatting with the folks here, I learned more about gluten free options in the area and I learned that they are great people.  We made this a daily stop before the beach for coffee and breakfast.  Everything I had here was good, but in particular, I would recommend the cinnamon rolls.  Everyone in my family including my gluten eating kids agreed that these were great and couldn’t tell that they were GF.  Island Gluten Free also has a pamphlet with gluten free options in the area that serve their products under the Stellar Gluten Free Label.  This place is a must-stop.
  2. Beckham’s on the Trail – The restaurant has a great gluten free menu and takes the issue of gluten seriously.  It’s my understanding that they have a separate gluten free prep areas and they do have dedicated fryers.  I had the deep free fish and it was amazing.  Really great place and Celiac friendly.
  3. Fresh Kitchen – This place is a dedicated gluten free restaurant.  You pick a bowl size and pick your bases, proteins and veggies.  My food was nutritious and straight up delicious.  For what you get, I also think it’s a great value.
  4. Carrabba’s on Stickney Point Road – Part of the Carrabba’s chain.  They offer a gluten free menu chain-wide.  I talked with the manager here about cross contamination and they seemed to understand the issue well.  They were friendly and the food was great.  I had the grilled salmon.  Our server was a delight.  She indicated that some of the cook’s here have been at this location for a long time and that it was one of the best Carrabba’s restaurants around.
  5. S’macks Burgers and Shakes – They offer a gluten free bun (Stellar from Island Bakery) and were very friendly.  If you are a celiac you need to talk with them a bit about your situation.  I had a good experience and the food was tasty.  It was nice to have a burger on a good gluten free bun.  Some frozen custard options are also gluten free, but you need to be careful on toppings and mix-ins.  I spoke with the manager and had a dish of vanilla from a machine they don’t use very often.
  6. Baja Boys Grill – This is a dedicated gluten free food truck serving fresh Mexican.  This is owned and operated by a celiac.  Really great food and nice people.  It was a little difficult to track the truck down.  I have a suspicion they are only open on Wednesdays at the Phillipi Farmer’s Market.  My only complaint is it would be nice to see them open more often.  Great food!
  7. Earth Origins Market – This is a chain of health food grocery stores that has a couple locations in Sarasota.  Great selection of gluten free food and reasonable prices

This was my first big trip after being diagnosed with Celiac Disease.  Sarasota and Siesta Key are great places to visit if you’re looking for a beach getaway.  I was very happy with the gluten free options.  I highlighted the ones I tried, but even more are available.  It was a great trip!

Got a trip report?  Let us know, we’d be happy to share!

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Find Me Gluten Free – for iPhone and Android


“Find Me Gluten Free” for iOS (also available on Android), is my go-to app for finding gluten free restaurants.  I love the user reviews and ratings as well as the “find near me feature”.

If you decide to give it a try, I would encourage you to rate and review restaurants you go to, both good and bad.  If it’s a good location, also head over to the more mainstream and give it a good review there.  You can also suggest new restaurants for Find me Gluten Free to add to their list.  We want to spread good information and support great gluten-free-friendly businesses.

“Find Me Gluten Free” on iTunes and Google Play

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University of Chicago Spring Flours Gluten-Free Gala – May 6


Spring Flours Gluten-Free Gala

“The University of Chicago of Chicago Celiac Disease Center is funded completely by donations. Much of that support comes from the annual Spring Flours Gluten-Free Gala. Since 2007, some of Chicago’s best bakers and restaurateurs have gathered each year for an evening featuring gourmet gluten-free cuisine to sell-out crowds. The event is like no other—it allows diners and chefs to interact directly in a shared appreciation of wonderful food and a great cause.”

This years event is scheduled for May 6.  Grab the full details at

Gluten Free Finds Launches!

I’m excited to announce the launch of Gluten Free Finds!

Our mission is to serve as a helper to live the gluten free lifestyle more easily and at a lower cost and to spread information and news about gluten related issues including Celiac disease to help increase awareness.

This will be a platform for sharing information.  To help spread the word about discounts and deals on gluten free foods and products as well as share tips, news and information.  Gluten free travel guides and trip reports, Reviews of GF products, recipes and general news about gluten free eating and Celiac disease.

Help us! Submit a Tip and let us know about your Gluten Free Find

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Review: Triumph Dining Gluten Free Dining Out Cards – English and Spanish

Gluten Free Dining Out Cards (English and Spanish Edition)

Gluten Free Dining Out Cards (English and Spanish Edition)by Triumph Dining

These cards help to explain to restaurant staff (in both English and Spanish) that you need to dine gluten free.

I picked these up for a trip to Guatemala that I just returned from.

Prior to ordering these I had been apprehensive about going to a country where I do not speak the language (I do speak a little spanish… a little) with Celiac Disease [See: About Me].  It’s not the traveling itself that has me on edge, I love to travel.  It’s Celiac that’s the issue.  This is was my first major international trip since being diagnosed.

These cards put me at ease, by a good bit.  They are much more detailed when I compare them to free cards or apps I’ve found.  I don’t want to publish a picture because these are a work of Triumph Dining and I don’t want to give away their hard work.  The cards contain the following sections.. First: A statement telling the waitperson that I have celiac disease and that I must eat a special diet.  It asks for their help to do that.  Then… “I Cannot Eat”, “Please Check” and “I can eat”.  Each of these areas contain additional information and examples.  There is a “Thank you” statement and finally a section on cross contamination.  One side of the card is in English and one is in Spanish.

These cards made it much easier to navigate eating while traveling in Guatemala.  I tried to minimize my risk be taking some food along.  For most breakfasts I ate fruit and a bowl of KIND Gluten Free Granola.  Most of the time I did this at the hotel’s restaurant.  I just asked for some cold milk and a spoon and bowl and on every occasion was kindly provided those things.  The rest of my party ate regular breakfast.  For lunches I would typically eat a protein or food bar.  A couple of my current favorites are Luna’s Chocolate Salted Caramel and Nugo Dark, Chocolate Chip

I also brought along some shelf stable and microwavable Hormel Chili with Beans as a fallback.  Things went well enough at restaurants that I never had to resort to eating the chili.

Other foods I brought along – Oberto Original Beef Jerky, Lance Gluten Free Crackers (both the cheddar cheese and peanut butter), Jif To Go and a couple CalNatural Svelt Protein Shakes.  I used Rubbermaid Canisters – the smaller sizes in this set – to pack the liquid items to protect against crushing or leaking.  I used the smallest size to put protein bars in to put in my backpack.  I don’t like the textured of crushed and smooshed protein bars.  Packing them in a container keeps them undamaged.

Celiac disease and gluten intolerance is not prevalent in Guatemala.  Very few people have the condition or have heard of it.  I went to one restaurant that had a GF menu on my trip Epicure in Antigua.  I still used the Triumph Dining card for that meal.  I ended up with some sauteed vegetables and a grilled chicken breast.  It was very good.  Epicure also has a delicious selection of gluten free desserts.  I tried a couple and they were delicious.  They also brought some chocolates with our bill that were identified as gluten free.  If you’re looking for gluten free in Antigua… check out Epicure.

I ate at a variety of restaurants with the assistance of Triumph’s dining’s Dining Card.

One suggestion that I would make is… There is a section at the bottom of the card that basically covers cross contamination.  In my opinion, that’s your biggest unseen risk and it’s probably also the area that’s most likely to be missed or misunderstood.  I would suggest using a highlighter to highlight that section so that servers, cooks and chefs pay special attention.

Without Gluten Free Dining Out Cards, I don’t know if I could have explained my situation in another language to a people that are by and large completely unaware of my medical condition.  I’ll have this on hand with me for every trip I take to a Spanish speaking country.  Based on my experience, I can recommend these to you as a tool to help you eat gluten free while traveling to Spanish speaking countries.

Gluten Free Dining Out Cards (English and Spanish Edition)


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Mayo Clinic Going Gluten Free: Essential Guide to Managing Celiac Disease

Mayo Clinic Going Gluten Free: Essential Guide to Managing Celiac Disease and Related Conditions

Mayo Clinic Going Gluten Free: Essential Guide to Managing Celiac Disease and Related Conditions by Joseph A Murray

This was my first read on Celiac Disease and Gluten related conditions.  I think it’s a great book, I learned a lot.  I picked up the Kindle Edition

Mayo Clinic Going Gluten Free: Essential Guide to Managing Celiac Disease and Related Conditions

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Jump Start Your Gluten-Free Diet! Living with Celiac / Coeliac Disease & Gluten Intolerance – Free

Jump Start Your Gluten-Free Diet! Living with Celiac / Coeliac Disease & Gluten Intolerance

Jump Start Your Gluten-Free Diet! Living with Celiac / Coeliac Disease & Gluten Intolerance by Kim Koeller, Stefano Guandalini MD and Carol Shilson

Kindle Edition books can be viewed on your Kindle Device or on free reader applications available for your iPhone, Android or Windows smart phone – and  for your web browser via Amazon’s Cloud Reader.  This dynamic link will take you to the appropriate reader for your current platform.


The University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center is dedicated to raising awareness, increasing diagnosis rates and meeting the needs of people affected by celiac disease nationwide through education, research and advocacy.

Celiac disease, spelled Coeliac outside of North America, is an autoimmune disorder, which means the body “attacks itself”, rather than attacking a foreign substance as in an allergy. The medical treatment for celiac disease consists of strict adherence to a gluten-free diet.

With this guide you will understand the differences between celiac disease, intolerances and allergies. You will learn about the 300-plus signs and symptoms associated with celiac disease, genetic and antibody blood testing, diagnosis and required follow-up testing.

In this guide you will learn what gluten is, where gluten is found and how to avoid gluten. You will also become knowledgeable on how to make healthy food choices while grocery shopping and preparing foods inside your home to manage your gluten free diet.

You will be able to identify gluten free grains, meal options and snacks for safe eating anytime. You will also be able cook gluten free for your family and friends with easy to follow recipes excerpted from the book – Simple, Delicious Solutions for Gluten-Free & Dairy Free Cooking by Sueson Vess from Special Eats.

You will become aware of how to eat gluten free outside your home at social gatherings and school. You will also empower yourself to safely eat in restaurants and while traveling with checklists and recommendations excerpted from the books, ebooks & apps – Let’s Eat Out with Celiac / Coeliac and Food Allergies! by Kim Koeller from GlutenFree Passport. You will also discover the pioneering research initiatives, programs and services offered by the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center.


3/16/16 3:30 PM Central: This title is selling for $0.  Check the product page for up to the minute price and availability.

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Krusteaz Gluten Free Honey Cornbread Mix


Krusteaz Gluten Free Honey Cornbread Mix, 15-Ounce Box by Krusteaz

Gluten free cornbread mix made with real honey.  Can be prepared as squares, muffins, or in a skillet.


Krusteaz Gluten Free Honey Cornbread Mix, 15-Ounce Box

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Gluten Free in Chicago! – A Celiac’s Visitor Guide


We live in the Midwest and are relatively close to Chicago.  As such, it’s one of our favorite cities to visit.  We typically visit 3 or 4 times per year.

My trip reports [Trip Reports Tag] are typically organized in a chronological fashion.  This one will be a bit different since, over time, it will comprise multiple trips and should grow to more of a GF visitors guide for Chicago.  I will continue to add and update this post as I visit (and re-visit) restaurants.  Restaurants are listed from A to Z.

Note: For restaurants with lots of photos or additional information or multiple visits you’ll see expandable sections.  Expand those for additional information.

I have Celiac Disease [About Me].  I am very sensitive to even small amounts of gluten.  I try to be very careful about restaurant selection, always speak to restaurant staff about my situation and also try to make wise dining choices.  Unless otherwise noted, I did not experience any known reactions to the restaurants listed here.  I suggest looking at reviews, along with asking questions about ingredients and preparation to make appropriate decisions for your personal health requirements.

Continue reading “Gluten Free in Chicago! – A Celiac’s Visitor Guide”