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Craisins

Craisins

Craisins Are Gluten Free!

We love to make a ‘snack mix’ for the girls, whether for breakfast, travelling, school, or just for an afternoon snack.  We throw in some Chex, peanuts, gluten free pretzels, and raisins or Craisins.  While you would think most fruit would be gluten free, you do need to look carefully, as wheat can be used to prevent ‘sticking’ of the fruit.

Fortunately Ocean Spray does a very nice job of labeling their products.  I recently picked up Cherry flavored Craisins and Pomegranate Craisins.  Prominently labeled, you can easily see gluten free.  I categorize these as fruit snacks, as they do contain sugar, both natural and added.  They are quite sweet, but can definitely provide a unique taste to a mix or other items.  Definitely handy to keep a bag or two nearby.  And they do contain vitamins necessary for our Celiacs, made primarily of raisins or cranberries.

Tapioca Loaf

Tapioca Loaf

One of Our Staples--Tapioca Loaf

Where would we be without a good, traditional loaf of bread?  We can buy a variety of mixes to make ourselves, which we do regularly (http://www.raleighcelkids.com/?p=712), but it still is quite convenient to go to a grocery store and pick up an already made loaf of bread.  Ener-G’s Tapicoa Loaf varieties allow us to do that.  Originally, we could only find these loafs at Whole Foods or Earth Fare, but now we can find them at Wal-Mart and regular grocery stores.  Definitely a life saver when needing a quick loaf of bread.  Ener-G makes many varieties of their Tapioca Loaf, including the regular, a Light, and then they also make a Light White Rice Loaf and a Light Brown Rice Loaf.  The Light versions contain fewer calories and are ‘lighter’ than the more dense regular.  Our girls, though, prefer the regular Tapioca, so I guess it is a personal preference.  We just are happy we can buy these loafs all over!

Find more breads at: http://www.ener-g.com/store/products.aspx?section=2&cat=2

An Easy to Make, Crusty Loaf of Bread

Gluten Free Pantry Bread

Sandwich Bread from Gluten Free Pantry

Nothing beats a warm, crusty loaf of bread from the oven.  Unfortunately, for awhile, that was a tough proposition for most Celiacs.  They could buy the Tapioca loaf or try to make a loaf using a bread machine.  In a future post, we’ll review the Tapioca Loaf, which our girls do like, but they like other breads as well.

A few months ago we found Gluten Free Pantry’s favorite sandwich bread mix.  You can find these in a variety of stores (we found it at Wal-Mart) or online.  You buy the mix, mix the ingredients, pop it in the over, and voila–a nice, crusty, brown load of bread.  Definitely a great find and a decent tasting bread.  As we continue down the path, we see more and more decent tasting breads.  Less dense and more airy.  We’re moving from a very dense, almost brick-like bread, to one rivaling regular bread.  Definitely pick up a box of Gluten Free Pantry’s favorite sandwich bread!

Kinnikinnick’s Website

KinniKinnick Website

Some of the Available Content on Kinnikinnick's Site

We all consult websites frequently for information about gluten free foods, new research into Celiac Disease, and of course, recipes.  Some manufacturers provide a robust, helpful site, some barely (or do not) contain helpful information.  Kinnikinnick’s website (http://consumer.kinnikinnick.com) is one of the most helpful, informative Celiac-centered sites I ever came across, and I only came across it a few weeks ago!

I will go ahead and provide a caveat that not all areas of their site appear finished.  When I clicked on Healthcare, I receive an ‘under construction’ message.  Other tabs contain a variety of information, but there is just so much!  For instance, I spent quite a lot of time on the Consumers/Shopping tab.  There, in the Latest News section, I was pleased to see they will expand their presence at Kroger.  Since we primarily shop at Kroger, that definitely excites us.  Seems they will offer 14 new products that include GF bagels, donuts, muffins, and hot dog buns!  I will definitely subscribe to the RSS feed on this site for their updates (not sure what an RSS is?  Check this link: http://www.raleighcelkids.com/?p=690.

Their site also has Kinnikinnick TV, with recipes and other things, announcements on new GF foods, and so much more!  Definitely spend some time on their site, as you can find lots of things.  Oh, and you can buy products online there as well!

Top YouTube Videos on Celiac Disease

After posting the RSS YouTube video recently, I was inspired to search YouTube for Celiac to see what I could find.

I found the ‘The View’ interview from a couple years back.  I guess the younger lady suffers from Celiac and really brought a lot of attention to Celiac Disease, and I think she may have written a book or a cookbook or something.  Visit that video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4v-9U8GbLu0

A video created by a student for a school project.  Gives a good, brief ‘what is Celiac’ and would probably be good for newly diagnosed patients:

Discovery Health’s 2 part Mystery Diagnosis show on Celiac Disease:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Am6AUFVpKUk&feature=PlayList&p=977828C3CA12CFF0&playnext_from=PL&playnext=1&index=43

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TL_O-uInv3U&feature=related

A Celiac Song (preview before watching with your children) talks a little about some of the symptoms of Celiac.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rO5HyX4H9vk&feature=related

KinniKritters–Another Animal Cracker Option

KinniKritters

Another Animal Cookie Brand--KinniKritters!

From the makes of the popular KinniKinnick flours, KinniKritter gluten free animal cookies provide another option for school lunches, snacks in the car, and a variety of baking options.   We found these cookies two places so far, Whole Foods and Harmony Foods (see Raleigh Cel-Kids Google Map for locations).

This brings another brand of animal crackers to an ever expanding line of snack crackers.  We reviewed Annie’s Bunny Cookies,  you can find ones from EnviroKids, and Mi-Del.   We definitely appreciate even more brands into this market, as we can get some at regular stores like Wal-Mart, but some only at the specialty stores.

The KinniKritters possess a typical animal cracker taste.  Crunchy, with that mild flavor.  They also hold up well in milk.  Small sizes, and in all the typical animal shapes.  Our girls definitely approve!

With all the various animal crackers, now we would like to see regular crackers.  Maybe something similar to Goldfish crackers.  We can make gluten free cheddar crackers but cannot make fun, kid shapes out of them.  Hopefully someone will produce some soon!

Walk For Celiac This Fall…

Walk for Food Allergies

You Can Walk With Us For Food Allergies in October!

On October 23rd, you can all help raise money and walk with us for Food Allergies, obviously including Celiac, in Cary.  Yes, Celiac Disease is an auto-immune disease and not a true allergy, but this walk will help spread information about it and regular food allergies.  Walks will occur throughout the Country this fall, and our Raleigh area walk will occur at 10am, with check-in at 9am at Bond Park, 801 High House Road, Cary, NC 27513.  More information will come, but you can see the Raleigh area page below.  Please let us know if interested.  raleigh.celkids(at)gmail.com.

http://www.foodallergywalk.org/site/TR/2010Walk/2010Walks?fr_id=1821&pg=entry

Facebook and RSS Feeds

Cel Kids

Facebook and RSS for Cel Kids--Use Them!

We are starting to see some usage of our Facebook page!  That is the intention–a place for all the parents to share things they find, news they have heard, and everything about raising Celiac Kids.  To use the Facebook:

  1. Click the Large Blue F on our page (or you can just search for Raleigh Cel Kids on Facebook)
  2. Read and post!
  3. Repeat!

The other logo, the orange man, allows you to subscribe to our Cel Kids webpage.  Subscribe?  Yes, just like a magazine.  These little symbols you may see on your browser and websites allow you to bring all the content into one tool.  For instance, Google Reader, for those of you with Google Accounts.  So instead of coming to our page all time, visiting your other sites, you can pull all new content to one site.  Saves time!  Of course we still want you to visit our page from time to time, but this definitely helps you.  So when you click on the orange newsman, it will prompt you for which RSS reader you want to use.

Want more information on RSS feeds?  The video below gives a quick and easy definition of RSS readers.

Sprinkles

Sprinkles for Cupcakes

The Perfect Topping to Your Gluten Free Cupcakes

So you can find gluten free cake mixes everywhere now.  You have Kinnickkinnick, Bob’s Red Mill, Gluten Free Pantry,  and many varieties of Betty Crocker gluten free mixes.  You can make your own frosting, or buy the many varieties of GF Betty Crocker frostings (http://www.raleighcelkids.com/?p=630).  But what about the MOST important part–the jimmies?  For those of you natives, Northerners call sprinkles jimmies.  As in, I want rainbow jimmies on my ice cream cone!

Celiacs must exercise caution when using sprinkles/jimmies/or whatever you may call them.  While most of them by basic ingredients are gluten free (except those with modified corn starch/syrup), many use wheat flour to prevent them from sticking together.

Recently we discovered ‘let’s do sprinkelz’ at Earth Fare.  As you can see, they were clearly marked gluten free.  We purchased the Carnival type, which consisted of sprinkles in pastel colors.  You can also find them in chocolate and confetti flavors.  Let’s Do, the company that makes them, also makes the Let’s Do Gluten Free Ice Cream Cones (http://www.edwardandsons.com/ld_info.itml) that we reviewed last year (http://www.raleighcelkids.com/?p=32).

More of the common everyday things most of us take for granted, that now even Celiacs can enjoy.  Definitely nice to add to cupcakes, cakes, and ice cream, for school parties, birthdays, and just for everyday snacking.

Utz Chips and Snacks

Utz Chips

Uts Chips--Well Labeled!

Nothing says snacking like a bag of chips.  Unfortunately, Celiacs need to carefully seek out a bag, and even when looking at the ingredients, sometimes it is uncertain as to their gluten content.

That’s why we LOVE Utz brand chips.  They very clearly (see the picture!) label their chips in the ingredients section.  ‘This is a Gluten Free Food.’  That in itself would please most parents, but then you need to check out their website.  Visiting

http://www.utzsnacks.com/nutritioninfo_celiacsprue.html

takes you to an Utz page focused on Celiac Sprue Disease.  I can honestly say I never have seen another company provide so much content related to Celiac.  In visiting the page, you will see some brief descriptions of Celiac, gluten free product lists, and their explanation of their understanding of whether or not certain ingredients contain gluten.  When it comes down to it, we all just go by best knowledge, so I appreciate their thoughts on their products.  For their product list, you can find many snacks that they deem gluten free, including:

Potato Chips:
Fried in cottonseed oil

  • Regular, plain (flat, ripple, wavy cut)
  • Reduced fat
  • Barbeque
  • Carolina BBQ
  • Sour Cream & Onion
  • Salt & Vinegar
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Cheddar & Sour Cream
  • Red Hot
  • No Salt
  • No Salt BBQ
  • Crab
  • Honey BBQ
  • Mystic Kettle Cooked (plain, Sea Salt & Vinegar, Dark Russet)

Fried in peanut oil

  • Kettle Classics (plain, Dark Russet, Sweet Potato, Smokin’ Sweet BBQ, Sour Cream & Chive, Jalapeno)

Fried in sunflower oil

  • All Natural Kettle Cooked (Lightly Salted, Dark Russet, Sea Salt & Vinegar, Gourmet Medley)

Fried in shortening (partially hydrogenated soybean oil)

  • Home Style Kettle Cooked, plain

Fried in lard

  • Grandma Utz Kettle Cooked (plain, barbeque)

Corn Products:

  • White Corn Tortilla Chips
  • Restaurant Style Tortilla Chips
  • Baked Tortilla Chips
  • Cheesier Nacho Tortilla Chips
  • Corn Chips (plain, barbeque)
  • Popcorn (butter, cheese, white cheddar)
  • White Cheddar Cheese Curls
  • Baked Cheese Curls and Balls
  • Crunchy Cheese Curls
  • Puff ‘N Corn (plain, cheese, caramel)

Miscellaneous Products:

  • Mild Cheddar Cheese Dip
  • Cheddar & Jalapeno Dip
  • Mt. Misery Mike’s Salsa Dip
  • Sweet Salsa Dip

Quite the list, right?  Lots of choices for you and your Celiac.   And as is the common case, they close the page by stating that ingredients do change, and you should use caution when using these.  We have tried many of these products with no reaction, so we definitely feel confident eating Utz brand snacks.  Just a refreshing company, well aware of Celiac Sprue, wanting to be very forthcoming with their information.

Happy snacking!