Win Stuff Wednesdays

Posted on March 21st, 2011 by Alison | Posted in Giveaways, Products | Read 3 Comments - Add Your Own »

Wonderful readers of my blog, I know how difficult it can be sometimes to eat gluten-free or allergen-free, not to mention expensive. I often get generous offers for samples of products, and I’d like to reward you with free stuff too! You deserve it.

win-stuff-wednesday1I am excited to announce a new feature on my blog called Win Stuff Wednesday! I will be featuring products that I like, such as food, books, gift certificates and whatever else I think you would like. Be sure to read the directions, though, because I will be asking you specific questions that you will need to answer in the comments!

This will be fun, don’t you think? So check back on Wednesdays to see what goods I’ve got. And if you have a product that you would like to donate for the giveaways, please email me and I will consider it!

See you Wednesday!

Beanitos – a corn-free chip!

Posted on February 9th, 2011 by Alison | Posted in Corn Allergy, Healthy Living, Products, Uncategorized | Read 3 Comments - Add Your Own »

Corn sensitivity seems to be on the rise. I know many gluten-free people who also can’t have corn. I must admit that I have no willpower when it comes to chips and salsa — thankfully, I don’t have a problem with corn, but for those that do, or for those that just want to have less corn in their diets, there’s a chip for you!

beanitos-corn-free-chipsI came across Beanitos at The Fancy Food Show in San Francisco last month. These chips are like tortilla chips without the corn! So if you miss that crunch with your guacamole, look no further. Beanitos are 100% corn, wheat, potato and soy free. They are also low glycemic, high protein and high fiber.

The chips come in four flavors: Black Bean, Pinto Bean & Flax, Black Bean with Chipotle BBQ, and Pinto Bean with Cheddar Cheese. If you don’t see this product in your local grocery store, print the Beanitos product sheet and bring it in to show them.

Kikkoman gluten-free soy sauce – new product

Posted on January 27th, 2011 by Alison | Posted in Celiac Disease, Gluten Intolerance, Products, Wheat Allergy | Read 8 Comments - Add Your Own »

kikkoman-gluten-free-soy-sauceKikkoman has finally done it — they have created a gluten-free soy sauce. Traditional soy sauce is made with wheat, and is therefore not gluten-free. Wheat-free tamari has been available for years: San-J and Eden Foods are two well-known brands.

To clarify the difference between soy sauce and tamari:
Soy sauce is made from fermented soybeans and wheat. Tamari is made from fermented soybeans and little or no wheat. Tamari is considered richer than soy sauce because of the higher concentration of soybeans.

Some tamari is wheat-free, but many brands of tamari have wheat in them. For example, San-J makes soy sauce (contains 40-60% wheat), tamari (a small amount of wheat), and gluten-free tamari (no wheat).  Kikkoman also makes a Tamari Soy Sauce that contains wheat, so one can’t assume that all tamari is wheat-free.

Kikkoman’s new gluten-free soy sauce is wheat-free, using rice instead of wheat. The ingredients are water, soybeans, rice and salt. What I find interesting is that for years, Kikkoman has claimed that their soy sauce made with wheat is gluten-free by Codex standards, yet they have now come out with a truly gluten-free soy sauce.

Before you get too excited about going out for Asian food again, realize that it’s going to take a while for restaurants to begin using this soy sauce because it needs to be available to them in a large size. Currently there is an almost 1/2 gallon size available for restaurants, but this is small compared to regular soy sauce that comes in 5 gallons! Not only will the available size determine whether or not a restaurant decides to use the gluten-free soy sauce, so will the general availability and the price. Restaurants buy through distributors. If the distributor doesn’t carry the gluten-free soy sauce, then it isn’t available to the restaurants. And the gluten-free soy sauce will probably be more expensive also, deterring restaurants from converting all their dishes to gluten-free.

I still have hope, though, and dream of one day having more choices at a sushi or Chinese restaurant!

Could you have a food intolerance?

Posted on January 14th, 2011 by Alison | Posted in Healthy Living, Products | Read 1 Comment - Add Your Own »

Yes, I’m talking to you — the one who doesn’t feel that great but doesn’t know why. You, who suspects that a food affects you, but doesn’t want to acknowledge it, or hasn’t taken the steps to figure it out. Make 2011 the year to improve your well-being!

attunefoodsbrandam_buttonFood intolerance is the first topic that I am writing about on the Attune Foods website, where I will be writing articles for the next six months as an “Attune Foods Brand Ambassador”, along with 11 other health bloggers.

I have been a fan of Erewhon gluten-free cereals for a long time (Erewhon is one of the brands owned by Attune Foods), so I was excited that they asked me to help them promote their brand and to share my thoughts on their website. They also make yummy gluten-free probiotic chocolate bars (chocolate + probiotics — what’s not to like?)

So go on over to Attune and check out my article (and leave me some comments over there!):

Spectrum shortening – new butter flavor, still dairy-free

Posted on January 3rd, 2011 by Alison | Posted in Dairy Allergy, Products, Recipes & Cooking Tips, Soy Allergy | Read 13 Comments - Add Your Own »

spectrum-shortening-butter1Looking for a dairy-free substitute for baking? Instead of butter or margarine, I have used Spectrum Organic Shortening made from palm oil. It works well, although it has such a neutral flavor that it doesn’t give baked goods the same buttery taste as those made with butter or margarine. Problem solved: Spectrum’s new Organic Butter Flavor Shortening!

I have only seen this product in one store so far, Mother’s Market in Orange County, California (I LOVE this market — incredible selection of gluten-free and other allergen-free foods). It isn’t even shown on the website yet, but I called the company and they gave me the ingredients: Organic palm oil, natural butter flavor (non-dairy), annatto and turmeric for color.

I love that more companies are accommodating dairy allergies with products like these.

Gluten-free beer made from barley – would you drink it?

Posted on December 29th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Products | Read 21 Comments - Add Your Own »

estrella-damm-daura-glutenThere is a gluten-free beer from Spain called Estrella Damm Daura, which its manufacturers call a lager and say “retains the same taste and properties as tradition beers.” The reason it tastes like other beers? It’s made from barley malt! As you students of gluten-free life know, barley contains gluten, so how can a beer made from barley malt be gluten-free? According to the manufacturer, the level of gluten is lower than the European gluten-free standard of 20 parts per million, or ppm.

According to their website, “Estrella Damm Daura is the result of a long collaborative research process between Damm and the CSIC (National Scientific Research Council) gluten unit, using the most advanced technology. It is the first beer in Spain to guarantee a gluten content below 6 ppm (products with a gluten content below 20 ppm are suitable for people with coeliac disease). Estrella Damm’s research and strong social commitment have made this breakthrough possible, which comes as excellent news for all those with coeliac disease.”

For those of you who don’t understand what this parts per million business is about, CONTINUE READING »

See’s Candies Gluten and Allergen List 2010

Posted on December 21st, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Holidays/Special Events, Products | Read 3 Comments - Add Your Own »

seescandies2010If I have a weakness during the holidays, it is See’s candies. As soon as a box is opened, my willpower goes out the window. See’s candies has an allergen list on their website, which may be different from the information I posted on See’s candies allergy information in 2008.

The current list is as follows from the
PO Box 93024
Long Beach, CA 90809-3024
(800) 789-7337

Seeʼs Allergen Information (valid July 1, 2010 – December 31, 2010)

We have listed the most common food allergy inquiries below. If you do not see a particular allergen listed or would like additional information, please contact Seeʼs Consumer Affairs Department at (800) 789-7337 and one of our representatives will answer your questions.

These products are egg-free:

  • All Foiled Novelties Milk Chocolate Drops
  • 62% Premium Dark Bar Nonpareil Jelly Eggs
  • Assorted Sugar Sticks Peanut Brittle
  • Black Cherry Lollypop Peppermint Twists
  • Butterscotch Little Pop® Pumpkin Spice Lollypop
  • Butterscotch Lollypop Root Beer Lollypop
  • Café Latté Little Pop® Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
  • Café Latté Lollypop Sour Bats
  • Chocolate Little Pop® Sour Bunnies
  • Chocolate Lollypop Sour Heart
  • Cinnamon Lollypop Sour Stars
  • Citrus Twists Sugar Free Almond Cluster
  • Dark Chocolate Almond Bar Sugar Free Dark Bar
  • Fancy Mixed Nuts Sugar Free Peanut Brittle
  • Hot Hearts Sugar Free Peanut Cluster
  • Jelly Bean Eggs Sugar Free Walnut Cluster
  • Licorice Medallions® Toffee-ettes®
  • Milk Chocolate Bar Vanilla Little Pop®
  • Milk Chocolate Bar w/ Almonds Vanilla Lollypop
  • Milk Chocolate Bar w/ Toffee Nuggets

These products are soy-free:

  • Citrus Twists Peppermint Twists
  • Fancy Mixed Nuts Sour Bats
  • Hot Hearts Sour Bunnies
  • Jelly Bean Eggs Sour Hearts
  • Licorice Medallions® Sour Stars
  • Nonpareil Jelly Eggs Sugar Free Peanut Brittle
  • Peanut Brittle

These products are nut-free: CONTINUE READING »

Halloween Candy List – Gluten-Free Allergen-Free Status – 2010

Posted on October 3rd, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Celiac Disease, Dairy Allergy, Egg Allergy, Food Allergies, Gluten Intolerance, Holidays/Special Events, Peanuts/Nuts Allergy, Products, Wheat Allergy | Read 73 Comments - Add Your Own »

THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION IS FROM 2010. THE 2011 HALLOWEEN LIST IS HERE: Halloween Candy List Gluten-Free Allergen-Free 2011

Here’s the list you’ve been looking for… but first, you get to see the giant spider I made in my yard last year for Halloween! The Home Depot guys cutting the black pipe to my specifications thought I was crazy! The spider is coming out again this year with some modifications (furry perhaps?)


Now on to the candy…

Each candy shows if its ingredients contains wheat/gluten, milk (dairy), soy, egg, nuts, or peanuts (6 of the top 8 allergens — fish and shellfish are not included since I have not found this to be a concern with candy). I do not include coconut as a tree nut and have not listed coconut as an allergen. I called many of the manufacturers and/or checked their websites for gluten and allergen information,which I have noted at the end of each manufacturer’s section. To print this list, click on the Print icon above the title. If you don’t see the print icon, click on the title of the article first.

Note: Please, as always, double check ingredients and also check with the child’s parents before giving them any candy or allowing them to eat anything! I will not be held liable for any accident occurring due to the use of this list. It is meant as a guide only.

In a hurry? Check out these:
Gluten-Free Halloween Candy Quick List 2010
Allergen-Free Halloween Candy Quick List 2010

NOTE for bloggers: If you are going to post or share this list, would you be so kind as to give me credit and link to me? This took many hours of my life and I even got kicked out of Walgreen’s for taking notes in the candy aisle, so please be considerate of my hard work! :)

Mainstream candy listed by brand, in alphabetical order:


  • Scooby Doo! Fun Pops (lollipops with picture of Scooby Doo)
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, nuts, egg, milk, wheat/gluten, soy
    • Ingredients contain: no top 8 allergens
    • Package statement: “Packaged in a plant that processes peanuts and tree nuts.”


  • Airheads Bars and Airheads Bars Sour
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, nuts, egg, milk, wheat/gluten
    • Ingredients contain: soybean oil
    • Package statement: “Manufactured in a facility that processes wheat flour”
  • Airheads Xtremes Rolls
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, nuts, egg, milk
    • Ingredients contain: wheat flour, soybean oil
  • Airheads Xtremes Belts
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, nuts, egg, milk, soy
    • Ingredients contain: wheat flour, wheat starch
  • Airheads Pops and Whistle Pops
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, nuts, egg, milk, soy, wheat/gluten
    • Ingredients contain: none of the top 8 allergens


  • Sour Punch Twists
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, nuts, egg, milk, soy
    • Ingredients contain: wheat/gluten


  • Big Hunk
    • Ingredients free of: wheat/gluten, milk, tree nuts (see company Gluten-Free info below)
    • Ingredients contain: peanuts, eggs, soy lecithin
    • Package statement: “made in a facility that uses milk, egg, treenuts, wheat and peanuts”
  • Rocky Road
    • Ingredients free of: none of top 8!
    • Ingredients contain: milk, tree nuts (cashews), wheat/gluten (barley malt and wheat flour), soybean oil
    • Package statement: “may contain peanuts, eggs, and flour”
  • Abba Zabba
    • Ingredients free of: tree nuts, eggs, milk, wheat/gluten (see company Gluten-Free info below)
    • Ingredients contain: peanuts, soybean oil and soy lecithin
    • Package statement: “Made in a facility that uses milk, egg, treenuts, wheat and peanuts”
  • Look
    • Ingredients free of: tree nuts, wheat/gluten (see company Gluten-Free info below)
    • Ingredients contain: milk, peanuts, soy lecithin, eggs
    • Package statement: “Made in a facility that uses milk, egg, treenuts, wheat and peanuts”
  • U-No
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, eggs, wheat/gluten (see company Gluten-Free info below)
    • Ingredients contain: milk, almonds, soy lecithin
    • Package statement: “Made in a facility that uses milk, egg, treenuts, wheat and peanuts”

Gluten-Free info (via phone Sept 2010): The only guaranteed gluten-free candy is the 2 oz. (regular size) Big Hunk. For all other candies, including the mini Big Hunks, there is the possibility of contamination from flour that is used on the belts. While there is no flour used specifically for the Big Hunk minis, there is flour used on the belts for the manufacture of the Look bars.


Amy’s introduces gluten-free burritos

Posted on August 19th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Products | Read 4 Comments - Add Your Own »

Back in 2007 I wrote about how I make my own gluten-free burrito, the big Mexican-food-place kind of burrito. But there is the other kind of burrito I remember from junior high and high school days — the frozen bean and cheese burrito in the plastic wrapper that you popped in the microwave and ate as a snack. Remember those? It’s funny how we can remember tastes even if that food hasn’t touched our taste buds in years. Those burritos are like that for me. I’m not claiming they are a fabulous food that I miss after going gluten-free, but there is definitely something nostalgic about this little frozen burrito.

amysglutenfreeburritosWhen Amy’s offered to send me their new gluten-free burritos to try, the taste came to my memory and I wondered if theirs would taste like I remember. They have two flavors: the traditional bean and cheese, and a dairy-free version (thank you, Amy’s, for not putting tofu in a burrito!)

I first tried the gluten-free dairy-free bean and rice burrito and I have to say, I really liked it! It did split in the middle when I microwaved it according to directions, so I wasn’t able to pick it up (like I remember doing long ago), but I managed with a fork. I thought the flavor was really great on both the tortilla and the filling. I shared it with my daughter who thought it was too spicy — but keep in mind that she is so ultra-sensitive to spices that if there were one speck of pepper in her entire meal she would know it! It was barely spicy.

On a different day we tried the gluten-free bean and cheese burrito. Very good! This one is not spicy at all, as confirmed by my daughter (I had her try a little even though she doesn’t regularly eat dairy). The cheese in this burrito is not obvious — it gets melted into the beans. When my husband tried some, his response was “Legit.” A man of many words is he. Translation: “It’s a legitimate version of a regular burrito.” He’s right. It works. Are Amy’s gluten-free burritos exactly the same as other frozen burritos? Thankfully, no. They are much healthier!

GlutenFreeda also makes gluten-free frozen burritos. If anyone has opinions about either of these burrito brands, let us know in the comments!

Snyder’s of Hanover Gluten-Free Pretzels

Posted on June 11th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Products | ADD A COMMENT »

snydersglutenfreepretzelsSnyder’s of Hanover, known for their pretzels (I used to eat the big fat ones), has introduced Gluten-Free Pretzel Sticks. It is part of their Eat Smart Naturals Line. The pretzel sticks have been certified gluten-free by the GFCO and the bag I bought had a sticker on the bag showing this.

The pretzels are very buttery tasting but they are dairy-free. They are also egg-free, and do not contain soy other than soy lecithin.

INGREDIENTS: Corn Starch, Potato Starch, Tapioca Starch, Palm Oil, Dextrose, cellulose gum, baking powder (sodium acid pyrophosphate, sodium bicarbonate, corn starch, mono-calcium phosphate), salt, citric acid, yeast, soy lecithin, soda.

I don’t really eat gluten-free pretzels because I don’t want to be eating a bunch of starch, but I get pretzels for my daughters to have once in a while, especially for when other kids have them. We love Glutino pretzels and will continue to buy their brand out of loyalty, but it’s nice that these are available also. It also shows that another mainstream company is answering the call for gluten-free food!