Being gluten-free isn’t that hard, until you want to chomp on a piece of toast, chow down on some pizza, or twirl your pasta with a fork. I’ve compiled a list of my favorite gluten-free substitutes and an additional list of naturally gluten-free food.
- Gluten-free buckwheat bread from Le Pain Quotidien: This is by far the best GF bread I have ever had. I really don’t like GF bread made from rice. I find the consistency and taste are just terrible. This bread made eggs and toast enjoyable again.
- Gluten-free double chocolate cookies from Le Pain Quotidien: This cookie has a cake like consistency that I have missed since removing gluten from my diet. It’s dense, rich, and oozing with dark chocolatey goodness. It’s a must buy, even for non-GF eaters!
- Trader Joe’s GF pasta: I recommend the brown rice penne and fusilli. I’d stay away from the spaghetti. Brown rice pasta has a tendency to clump together, so I have two rules: I usually cook it for 1-2 minutes less than the directions say, and I only cook GF spaghetti if it’s made (at least in part) from corn. Unfortunately, TJ’s does not have corn pasta, so we only eat it if I have time to visit other grocery stores.
- Trader Joe’s GF pancake/waffle and other boxed mixes: These are surprisingly delicious. The pancakes were light and fluffy, and the brownies were decadently gooey.
- Amecis’s GF pizza crust: This is the best GF pizza I’ve had to date. Trader Joe’s also makes a frozen one that we keep in the freezer in a pinch, but it tastes more like flat-bread than pizza. Ameci’s, on the other hand, knows what it’s doing. I do not feel deprived at all when I order their pizza because it actually has a squooshy consistency that I can sink my teeth into.
The issue with many GF substitutes is that they just taste different than we’re used to, so many companies try to rectify this by making sugar the primary ingredient. Here is a list of naturally occurring gluten-free foods that you can get anywhere.
- Rice: There are so many different types of rice. I used to be a die-hard brown rice fan, but now that we eat rice often, I had to start branching out into basmati rice, jasmine rice, and wild rice, in addition to the usual brown.
- Quinoa: I’m a huge fan of quinoa in my salads. Being gluten-free makes me HUNGRY, and I find that adding a balanced combo of carbohydrates and protein help a lot. Quinoa offers both of these.
- Potatoes: My husband and I love potatoes, and they can be cooked so many different ways: pan-fried with a little cheese or roasted with rosemary and olive oil. You can mash them, chop them, slice them, and they come in different shapes, sizes, and colors!
- Corn tortillas: When we’re strapped for time, Yev and I love doing taco night. Grab some corn tortillas, shredded lettuce, shredded cheese, and some pre-marinated meat, and you have a 15 minute meal!
- Polenta: This is cornmeal that can be fried up and topped with anything: meat, eggs, vegetables, cheese, sauces. It can have more of a mashed consistency or solid, depending on preference. I always turn to polenta, when I am sick of all of my GF usuals.
- Lettuce wraps: When I’m out at a pub, and it seems like nothing is gluten-free, I usually just get a bacon, avocado, lettuce wrapped cheese burger. I’ve found that almost all places have this option, nowadays.
- Macaroons: These are basically made out of coconut, egg whites, and sugar, and they are delicious. I highly recommend the ones that are dipped in chocolate!
- Ice-Cream: As long as you’re careful not to buy the complicated ice creams with pieces of cookie dough or candy bars, most ice cream is naturally gluten-free. I love TJ’s coffee bean blast.
- Wine & Chocolate: On my rough days, I remember that wine and dark chocolate are always gluten-free.