At the turn of another month, we begin the hustle of the holiday season. Though the holiday celebrations may vary throughout the end of this year, at the center of most gatherings this season is food.
For those with gluten allergies or sensitivities, this time of year may feel a little stressful. Having a dietary restriction in general is an inconvenience.
While they require more intentionality, planning, and effort with meals, they don’t have to cause unnecessary stress during the holiday season.
Here are three tips to simplify gluten-free meals during Thanksgiving.
Tip #1: Plan Ahead - Don’t Be Afraid To Ask What’s Being Served
Just because you have Celiac Disease or a gluten intolerance doesn’t mean you should be left hungry or paying for the consequences of eating a gluten-filled meal.
Planning ahead will help arriving at Thanksgiving dinners, parties, and Friendsgiving gatherings much less stressful. Knowing what the host is serving, what you’ll be bringing, and what is available for you to eat will eliminate the guesswork!
That way, you can bring anything you might need/want to enjoy at dinner - you shouldn’t feel guilty for bringing extra food only you can eat!
If you are planning to host or bring additional gluten-free items to dinner, here are a few helpful and simple suggestions:
Gluten-Free Thanksgiving Dishes
- Gluten-Free Turkey: The star of the show, a succulent roasted turkey, is naturally gluten-free. Just be mindful of any seasonings and basting ingredients.
- Gluten-Free Stuffing: Opt for gluten-free bread or gluten-free stuffing mix to create a flavorful, gluten-free stuffing that everyone can enjoy.
- Gravy: Prepare gluten-free gravy by using cornstarch or gluten-free flour as a thickening agent. It's equally rich and delicious.
- Roasted Vegetables: Seasonal vegetables like carrots, Brussels sprouts, and sweet potatoes roasted with olive oil, herbs, and seasonings are gluten-free and an easy yet tasty side dish to add.
- Gluten-Free Desserts: Consider making gluten-free pumpkin pie, apple crisp, or flourless chocolate cake for a yummy gluten-free dessert.
Tip #2: Communicate Openly About Your Dietary Needs
Along with planning ahead, open communication with your family, friends, or host(s) for gatherings will aid in creating seamless enjoyment of meal times with dietary restrictions. Don’t hesitate to communicate your food allergies or sensitivities and adjust accordingly.
Honest communication before events helps lessen confusion and, therefore, stress. When you communicate your needs, this allows you to plan and bring a dish, create a designated allergen-friendly space in the food area, and add necessary labels to dishes/areas.
Tip #3: Bring A Back-Up Snack In Case Of Delays
Lastly, snacking intentionally will help in the hustle of coordinating, prepping, cooking, and cleaning before, during, and after these gatherings! Bringing Grab The Gold snack bars with you to gatherings can help ensure you have a gluten-free snack to curb hunger while you wait or prepare the meal!
Packed with protein (11g), fiber (7g), and potassium, these are the perfect gluten-free sidekicks for making it through the holiday feasts! They have an irresistible no-bake cookie taste and leave you satisfied for hours.
EXTRA TIP! Don’t Underestimate The Power of 1:1 Gluten-Free Flour
If you need to eat Gluten-free, you probably already know about all the different 1:1 gluten-free flours out there. Don’t underestimate the power of these for Thanksgiving!
These flours are a 1:1 replacement for normal flour to use in those gluten-filled recipes you still want to enjoy. One of our employees was recently diagnosed with Celiac Disease and started the journey of eating gluten-free.
Growing up and living in the South has made this transition extremely hard. Last Thanksgiving, his mom dedicated to using 1:1 gluten-free flour for all her dishes - not telling anyone else in the family. We’re happy to report that no one noticed a difference, and everyone enjoyed a Happy Gluten-free Thanksgiving (even if they didn’t know).
This Thanksgiving, we challenge you to use one of these recommended Gluten-free flours in your dish(es) to see what you think.
Celebrating a gluten-free Thanksgiving doesn’t have to be stressful; it can be delicious, delightful, and simplified with these tips! With thoughtful planning, intentional communication, and Grab The Gold by your side, you can enjoy a memorable Thanksgiving season with your loved ones. Happy Thanksgiving!