View Full Version : Need input from those who are gluten free!!

09-05-2012, 03:12 PM
As some of you know, I run a childcare along with homeschooling my teens!

I have 2 new kids starting in 2 weeks.

Kid 1 doesnt have gluten issues, was tested but Mom and Grandma DO so it could come up at some point. He is 2, so will be with me for a few years.
Kid 2 DOES have gluten issues. Not sure if it is sensitivity or celiac, assume sensitivity because Mom said she is ok if we takes a bite from another kids snack bowl, etc. Trying to clarify it with Mom as to HOW sensitive she is.

We have no issues. Never have had a child with gluten issues before. My son's BFF has them and I have consulted his Mom on some things BUT...thought I would put this out there to get more input.

Kid 2 will be here ONLY 1 day a week for the next year. I want to come up with a menu of 3 rotating lunch meals to have for her that I can do a NON-gluten free meal to do with for the kids who do not have gluten issues.

I know there are gluten free chicken nuggets. I have heard that Trader Joes has a great pasta that is gluten free and a large gluten free area. Our Fred Meyer grocery store is supposed to have a decent area. And I see that CHEX cereal says it is gluten free.

Basically she will be here for :

breakfast, so want 1 cereal and maybe a waffle(frozen) or recipe that is gluten free.
Lunch, need ideas for easy kid friendly things like chicken nuggets, a pasta(for spaghetti or buttered noodles) and a tasty gluten free brand of bread for sandwiches. Anyone know if Oscar Meyer Deli Meat is gluten free? Or a peanut butter brand that is gluten free?
Snacks....crackers, pretzels, cookies...that are gluten free?

Her Mom will be providing some things but I want to make sure she enjoys her stay here, that she doesnt feel TOTALLY different from the other kids and that I have a variety for her.

OH....and is Play-doh gluten free? I have heard that it is NOT but unless they are MEGA allergic...it should be fine. In Winter, Monday has been playdoh Mondays for our afternoon craft but if it is an issue...then I will change to something else.

What about Elmer's school glue?

These may seem like DUMB questions but never having dealt with this before...I want to make sure I provide a safe environment for her!


09-05-2012, 05:17 PM
My dh is allergic to wheat.

I make his bread sometimes, but when he buys it, he likes Rudi's brand. Look in the freezer section of the natural foods area. Glutino is another good brand that also makes some nice crackers. You can get gluten free nuggets, but it might be cheaper to get a bag of Bob's Red Mill GF All Purpose Flour and bread some chicken tenders yourself (if you are willing to fry them up). BRM also makes a variety of easy mixes, including pancake, shortbread, cornbread, cookies, brownies, etc.

There are lots of GF pastas, but dh prefers the quinoa variety. When cooking, it takes quite a bit longer than wheat pastas. Also, they can taste quite bland, so its a good idea to salt the water when you cook it.

It's really not hard to avoid gluten. For example, you could bake or stir fry some chicken and serve it with fries or chips and a vegetable. Hamburgers taste good even when they are not on a bun. Hot dogs too--you could make it fun by cutting it into little octopus shapes with some ketchup and mustard for dipping.

GF frozen waffles should be easy to find. I even found it in my store's generic brand, so you don't have to rely on the organic/natural section. You can get pre-made GF pizza crusts, and make an easy cheese pizza.

Yogurt, fruit, cheese, cold cuts, eggs, bacon, veggies...

I've never seen any deli meat that contains gluten, but I suppose it's possible...You'll find that allergen information is fairly prominently displayed after the ingredients on food packaging, so that's really your best bet when shopping. You never know the weird places it will turn up.

Soups in the can can be tricky. A lot of them use wheat in some form, but you might get lucky. I think soup is so easy to make from scratch that I prefer to do it that way. I get Better Than Bouillon (in jars), make a broth, and toss in whatever veggies and/or meat is appropriate (I brown the meat first though...)

The Better Than Bouillon will make a nice gravy too--just use cornstarch as a thickener instead of flour, or use Bob's Red Mill GF flour.

I don't know about Play-Doh and glue, but I'm sure you can find that info online.

09-05-2012, 05:27 PM
Thanks! I read somewhere on the internet(LOL) that processed lunchmeat and processed meat like hotdogs could very likely have gluten in them.
Stupid internet!LOL
That was a great bunch of info!
I def. make my own soups. Winter is easier to cook here as I make lots and we have leftovers from family meals, lots of healthy cooking.
Summer is more quick and easy stuff as we are outside playing more, come in for quick lunch and nap, etc. so I do things like nuggets, grill hotdogs, sandwiches, etc.
Thanks dragonfly/Kara!

09-07-2012, 05:15 PM
Got this from the Hasbro site:
What are the ingredients in PLAY-DOH compound?
The exact ingredients of PLAY-DOH compound are proprietary, so we cannot share them with you. We can tell you that it is primarily a mixture of water, salt and flour. It does NOT contain peanuts, peanut oil, or any milk byproducts. It DOES contain wheat.
PLAY-DOH compound is not a food item and is not intended to be eaten.

PLAY-DOH compound is non-toxic, non-irritating & non-allergenic except as noted: Children who are allergic to wheat gluten may have an allergic reaction to this product. Also, due to the high salt content in PLAY-DOH compound, the product can be harmful to pets if ingested.

There is no MSDS sheet required for PLAY-DOH compound.

09-07-2012, 05:15 PM
I also heard from my friend who has gluten issues as well as her child does....Elmer's School Glue is ok. It is considered GF.

Accidental Homeschooler
09-07-2012, 05:35 PM
We use Tinkyada pastas. I order them on vitacost.com and there is no shipping if you order fifty dollars. You might find some stuff you use there too if you don't want to get fifty bucks worth of gluten free foods. Gluten free processed foods are usually cheaper there for us (check at your local grocery store or coop first). Mostly we eat meat, fruit and vegetables with gluten free bread, crackers and pretzels. Good luck.

09-07-2012, 05:47 PM
SWEET! Being that it is only 1 daycare kid, 1 day a week....chances are I will not order from them YET, though I spent almost $25 today on just a few things! Where do you find gluten free pretzels? I am headed to Trader Joes this weekend to check as I was told they have a HUGE section of GF. Snacks are the hard thing so far. I usually serve small servings of goldfish, trader joe cookies, raisins, fresh fruit and pretzels for our afternoon snacks. All I have found so far for munchies is some cheddar cheese nut crackers. I am hoping that Trader Joes has more in the snack dept.
Thanks for the info!!

09-07-2012, 06:29 PM
I saw this recipe on Pinterest the other day for gluten free play doh: Gluten-Free Playdough (RECIPE) | Nourishing Hope (http://nourishinghope.com/2012/03/gluten-free-playdough-recipe/)

Sorry. You'll have to copy it to your browser. Stupid iPad won't let me create links.

09-07-2012, 09:18 PM
I think it's tempting, when going gluten free, to go out and try to get gluten free versions of ALL the normally gluten-filled foods, but it's really easy to simply avoid most of them. Bread and flour are most of what we get gf around here, with pasta, crackers and cookies coming in second, the last two mostly as treats.

Snacks without gluten are plentiful: fruit, veggies, cheese, potato chips, tortilla chips, corn chips, popcorn, rice cakes, yogurt, rice and corn chex (I like eating dry cereal as a snack sometimes--is that weird?), and there's probably a lot more.

Oh, certain Fiber One bars don't contain wheat (I can't remember which offhand, you have to check the package. I think there's a chocolate chip, peanut butter, and mocha flavor). It's not strictly gf, because the facility in which they are made is not gf, but it's not in the ingredients. Be sure to check the box, because some of their line do contain wheat. REALLY yummy!

The most useful thing I have on hand is the gf flour, which I use for breading, thickening, cookies and breads. I actually prefer cookies with gluten free flour, because I find the texture to be more delicate.

09-07-2012, 09:22 PM
Heck no! We eat cereal all the time around here!LOL Dry as a snack, dry in the morning for breakfast, real cereal with milk for breakfast, snack or dinner!LOL

I found a couple of kinds of cookies at Trader Joes. Just looking for pretzels now. Mom is to bring snacks BUT...I cannot depend on parents to always follow thru and want to have my own stuff in case one week she forgets.

Thanks for all the info!!!