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Trader Joe Joe-Joe’s Go Gluten Free!

cookies

Gluten Free Chocolate Sandwich Cookies

Who doesn’t love an Oreo?  Celiacs, that’s who.  Up until now, while you could find some chocolate/vanilla cookies, most did not even remotely compare to Oreos.  While on a Trader Joe trip recently, we found another contender.  For years TJ has made their own Joe-Joe’s, of course with lots of gluten.  We happened to accidentally see gluten free ones on a recent trip.  Of course we snatched up a box as quick as we could.  And of course, we opened them in the car on the way home.  Ok, confession, we did not even wait until we got in the car-we opened them as we put the groceries in the trunk.

Taste?  Just about as close to Oreos as you can get without the gluten.  All four of us devoured our first and started in on the second.  The cookie was crisp, the filling nearly perfect.  A great gluten free cookie!  We were excited to find these, as we plan to make a gf ‘dirt’ dessert for a picnic this summer.  More on that coming up in later posts…

Potato Trio–More GF Chips from Trader Joe

potato chipps

More GF Chips!

Yes, you can never go wrong with gluten free chips.  These Potato Trio chips found at Trader Joe bring a different taste to traditional chips.  Maybe it’s the unsalted variety or maybe the variety of potatoes used, but these thicker chips will definitely get eaten in your family.  Since they are thicker and unsalted, they definitely would lend themselves to a good dip or sauce.

Mom Knows Best–Or Does When She Puts Chocolate in Cereal!

cereal

Very Chocolatey Cereal!

So a year or so ago we danced for joy when Post released Fruity and Cocoa Pebbles gluten free.  I remember those cereals from my childhood, and now the girls could eat them too.  They like both, but definitely like Cocoa when we buy them.  Rich, cocoa-y cereal in the morning–what a way to wind up the girls for the day!

While recently shopping at Kroger’s, we found Mom’s Best Cereals Crisp Cocoa Rice.  While a little more expensive, when we got them home, we all actually like them better than Cocoa Pebble.  They taste richer and more crispy.  We definitely still like Cocoa Pebbles, but we would now gladly pay the extra little bit for Mom’s Best Cereals.

You can find more on their products at http://momsbestcereals.com/.  They carry a wide variety of organic cereals and oatmeals, but the only one I can tell coming gluten free is the Crispy Cocoa Rice.  Lots of other varieties for those without Celiac though.  How does Cinnamon Plum Spiced hot cereal or Pomegranate hot cereal sound?  We will need to keep an eye on Mom’s Best to see if they add more gf flavors!

 

From the Motherlode to the GF Holy Grail–GF Pop Tarts!

pop tarts

Gluten Free Toaster Pastry–YUM!

We saw many recipes over the years to make our own GF Pop-Tarts (or toaster pastries to use the generic term), but never pulled together the effort to go through them.  Have no fear, though, recently shopping at Kroger we found Glutino toaster pastries!  Excellent, excellent, to see a common breakfast food now come in a gf option.  Of course we picked them up, strawberry, the only flavor they had on the shelf.

Got them home, and noticed they come individually wrapped, where the regular ones come two in a pack.  No big deal there, no one needs two Pop Tarts in one sitting.  We also noticed no frosting on the outside.  Again, not something we need.  Like regular ones, I wanted to put them in the toaster for the girls.  In no time, out came two gooey, warm gf pastries.  Taste?  I was quite surprised that they tasted just like the regular ones.  Soft crust, made gooey with the toasting.  Fake strawberry taste, but they all taste that way–that’s the beauty of a Pop Tart!

Definitely go out and pick some out, if you have been missing this treat.  Unless I get to Kroger first and buy them all up!  Glutino definitely stepped it up with these and a lot of the other products they released recently.

The Motherlode of Cereal–Vanilla Chex!

cereal

MMMMMMMMM….

Wow!  What a surprise to find at Kroger recently–Vanilla Chex.  We were just going down the aisle, looked over at the clearance items, and found a few boxes of Vanilla Chex.  Our excitement quickly dropped though, as we figured these were only on the clearance rack since no one bought them and General Mills would quickly discontinue them.  Well, we put two boxes in our cart anyway.  When we made it to the regular cereal aisle, we DID find more, without the Manager Special/Clearance tags on them.  Did that mean they are permanent?  It definitely looks that way for now.  We even recently saw a commercial introducing them and all the other flavors.

Great news, as these Vanilla Chex are REALLY good.  They coat maybe a third of the regular chex (rice or corn) with vanilla powder, which stays on the Chex in milk.  The girls love them.  My wife loves them.  I love them!  So happy to see General Mills continue to try new products and keep those products gluten free!

JuJu Candy

I love walking through the candy aisle of a drugstore.  Liked it since I was a little kid.  You do not see the loose candy as much, but you still find lots of yummy treats.  While browsing around Walgreens recently, we found these containers of juju fruits.  When do you ever see candy, especially bulk candy, labeled gluten free so clearly.  In the past, many other drugstores may say ‘does not contain gluten ingredients’ or something similar, but this is one of the rare ones you see clearly marked.  So kudos to Walgreens.  Lots of other gf candy there too!

Honey Stinger Chews

honey stinger

Sting or Be Stung!

So today we’ll look at another type of gluten free energy chew.  Honey Stinger is a brand that makes a variety of chews, bars, gels, and energy waffle (think honeycomb) for intensity workouts.  They make it very clear (http://www.honeystinger.com/nutrition.html) that the energy bars do contain gluten.  Their protein bars do not contain gluten, but they are made on a shared production line.  The energy chews come gluten free on a dedicated gf production line.

So already I like this company.  Anyone aware of the difference between gf production lines and shared production lines makes me feel more comfortable about using their products.  Would I give these to children, though?  Probably not, for similar reasons to the SportBeans.  These all contain ingredients that children probably do not need to consume regularly.  Some also contain heavy amounts of caffeine.  Great for running, biking, or splitting wood (see the image!!), but not just for growing children.  Maybe for teens involved in high intensity sports.  The only concern is the beeswax/honey used.  In some articles, children can show other issues with consumption of honey, other allergies and such.

Jelly Belly Sport Beans

sport beans

Not Your Father’s Jelly Beans…

So continuing on small look at StrideBox and running/nutritional supplements, we look today at Sport Beans, Jelly Belly brand’s endurance beans.  Like the regular Jelly Belly jellybeans, Sport Beans come gluten free (http://sportbeans.com/).  The big difference with them, though, is the ingredients.  Not all of the SportBeans come with caffeine, but some do, so you should watch that with children.  Even the non-caffeine ones do contain different ingredients that younger children may not need.  Older teens, those in sports and other activities, this definitely may appeal to some parents.  Teens in swimming, summer camps, and other high intensity workouts could benefit from these.  I would definitely stress talking with a pediatrician or doctor before allowing any regular consumption of these by children under 18.

I think, with these, what we as parents like is knowing these things will be available as our children grow.  Many great gluten free things exist, but obviously we do not yet partake in them.  Great to know all facets of our Celiacs’ lives are being considered!