Thursday, December 12, 2013

Brazi Bites

I kept seeing gluten free friends post and rave about Brazi Bites all over social media, so I was excited to get my hands on a few bags. These little brazilian cheese breads are known as pão de queijo, a popular brazilian recipe. The best part, they are naturally gluten free! Brazi Bites are made with tapioca flour and other naturally gluten free ingredients. They come in 3 flavors, original, fire roasted jalapeño, and bacon. Yea, you heard me, gluten free bacon cheese bread bites. They are everything you would hope for. Crispy on the outside, soft and fluffy on the inside. 

Dangerously tasty and small, you could eat a million. I paired mine with Chipotle Sweet Potato and Black Bean Soup and I am already dreaming of what else to make with them. They come frozen in resealable packages which is nice since you can choose how many Brazi  Bites to bake. You can use their store locator to find out where to grab a few bags. They also ship nationwide!

I would definitely recommend trying these bad boys. The fire roasted jalapeño was my favorite with just the right amount of kick, but all the flavors are worth trying. Check them out on Facebook and Twitter too. 

Thanks Brazi Bites! 

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Chipotle Sweet Potato and Black Bean Soup

Now that I have moved to Portland Oregon all I want is soup. It's warm, it's cozy, and it tastes like love. This hearty and nutritional soup is packed with flavor and the chipotle peppers will be sure to keep you warm this winter. The soup is of course gluten free, wheat free, organic, and vegan (just not all that delicious feta in the picture). 

Ingredients: (Serves 2 Main or 4 starters)
-2 Cups Vegetable Broth *Make sure your broth is gluten free, broths can be a hidden source of gluten. Most organic or free range broth is gf, but always check labels.
-1 Can Black Beans, Drained 
-1 Large Sweet Potato, peeled and cut into small chunks
-2 Cloves Garlic, minced
-1/2 Small Red Onion, chopped
-1 Small Zucchini, Cut into small chunks
-1 Cup Kale, Chopped Roughly 
-1/2 Cup White Corn
-1 Chipotle Pepper in Adobo Sauce, chopped *Be careful! Some adobo sauce contains gluten, The Embasa brand contains wheat flour. La Costena is a gluten free brand, but always check labels. 
-2 TBSP Adobo Sauce from the chipotle peppers
-1 TBSP Coconut Aminos (Braggs or Tamari could work too)
-1/2 TSP Chipotle Pepper Powder
-1/4 TSP Cumin
-1/8 TSP Sea Salt
-1 TBSP Olive Oil

I have a crush on my soup. It's just so darn pretty and colorful. 

Prepare your ingredients.
-In a large pot heat 1 TBSP olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and sauté until the onions are translucent. 
-Reduce the heat and add chipotle pepper, adobo sauce, cumin, chipotle powder, and sauté for another minute.
-Add the vegetable broth, sweet potato, kale, zucchini, corn, coconut aminos, sea salt, and black beans. Bring to a boil and then lower the heat and cook uncovered stirring often for about  1 hour to 1.5 hours.
-Serve and garnish with toppings such as cheese, sourcream, cilantro, greek yogurt, green onions,  more hot sauce, or gf croutons. 


G-Free Foodie Box Expansion Kickstarter

The G-Free Foodie Box Club is looking to become even more awesome. I know I know, how is that even possible? Helping foodies avoid all those foods and allergens that make daily life a bit more complicated, it's already one of the best monthly boxes around. This killer monthly box comes with tons of tasty full size gluten free products to try, each tested by the fabulous K.C. Pomering and her amazing team. 

The G-Free Foodie Box is looking to expand through their new Kickstarter campaign. The expansion is going to add Paleo, Non-GMO, Organic, and more tasty Top-8 Allergen free foods. They even are thinking about adding a more kid focused box for all those mini-foodies in the making. 

You can show your support by pledging any amount right HERE at their Kickstarter page. 
Head over to the G-Free Foodie website for all things gluten free and to sign up for the G-Free Foodie Box.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Coconut Secret- Coconut Aminos

One of my newest obsessions and new staple in my house is Coconut Secret Coconut Aminos.  I used to love cooking with soy sauce, but since it soy sauce contains gluten I am always looking for other alternatives to use. Tamari or Bragg's are great substitutes, but both are made with soy which I try to limit in my diet when possible. When I saw that coconut aminos are soy free, I knew I had to try it. Gluten Free and Soy Free?! I'm in. It is great for cooking which is why the bottle is almost empty! I've been adding it to dressings, marinades, soups, vegetables, meat, seafood, and basically everything in my fridge. Slighty sweet and full of great coconutty benefits , it's perfect for everyday use. 

I mean, that's a pretty awesome label. 100% Organic, gluten free, dairy free, and non-gmo. Coconut also has some incredible benefits. You can read about some of the benefits of coconut here. It's definitely no secret how much I love Coconut Secret... See what I did there?! 

You can find use the store locator to find a bottle, plus they have other products like coconut crystals, coconut nectar, coconut flour, coconut vinegar (intriguing!) coconut cream, and even chocolate covered coconut bars, count me in. 

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Cauliflower and Bacon Gratin

Ahh the holidays, time for bonding with your family, sharing laughs, giving presents, and absurd amounts of cheese and bacon. This rich and cheesy dish is perfect to bring to any holiday party or heck make it for yourself in June but just make it. 

-1 Large Head Cauliflower, Cut into florets
-3 TBSP Butter or Butter substitute (I used Organic Earth Balance) 
-1 Cup Monterey Jack Cheese, Shredded
-1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese, Grated
-1/2 Cup Heavy Whipping Cream
-1.5 Cups Hot Milk (I used So Delicious Coconut Milk) 
-2.5 TBSP Gluten Free All Purpose Flour (I used Trader Joe's version) 
-2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
-1/3 Cup Bacon, Cooked and Chopped *or more bacon, it's always a good decision 
-1/4 TSP Sea Salt
-1/4 Cup Gluten Free Breadcrumbs 

Grate your cheeses, now eat the cheese, okay now grate some more. 

-Preheat your oven to 375 Degrees
-Prep your ingredients
-In a large pot, bring salted water to a boil. Add your cauliflower florets and cook for about 4-5 minutes until cauliflower is a bit tender but still fairly firm. Drain cauliflower and set aside.
-In a medium saucepan, over low heat, melt 2 TBSP of the butter (or butter substitute), add in gluten free all purpose flour and stir constantly for about 2 minutes. Pour the heavy whipping cream and hot milk (Or milk substitute) into your butter/flour mixture. Slowly raise the heat and bring to a boil while whisking constantly until the mixture has thickened. This takes about 1-2 minutes, it depends if you are using milk or a milk substitute. 
-Take the mixture off the heat and add in your salt, minced garlic, 3/4 Cup Monterey Jack Cheese, and 1/4 Cup Parmesan. Mix well.
-Pour a little bit of the mixture on the bottom of your baking dish (8x11 or two smaller ones) Place the cauliflower in the baking dish, top with some of your crumbled bacon (not all) then pour the rest of the cheese sauce over the cauliflower. Add the rest of the bacon, 1/4 cup Monterey Jack Cheese and the Gluten free breadcrumbs. Melt the remaining 1 TBSP of butter and drizzle over the top. 
-Bake for 25-30 minutes until the top is golden brown.

Serve hot and enjoy! 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

GFAF Expo San Francisco 2014

I am happy to announce that I will be joining the GFAF Expo Official blogger team again! This time, San Francisco California! I had so much fun in Dallas that I just had to join in on fun again. Come hang out January 25th and 26th. These expos are amazing and you don't want to miss it! Come meet your favorite bloggers and authors, try tons of new gluten free products, take home samples of delicious gluten free food, visit 150+ vendors, and so much more. I hope to see you all there! XO

Check out all the info HERE! 
Follow GFAF Expo on Twitter
Find them on Facebook

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

2Good2B Bakery and Cafe

Tucked away in Encinitas California is one of my favorite dedicated gluten free bakeries. 2Good2B Bakery and Cafe offers a huge selection of 100% Gluten Free, Corn Free, and Soy Free baked goods and entrees for lunch or dinner. From cupcakes to muffins to pizzas and chicken pot pies 2Good2B is a must try for San Diego. 

Cases full of a variety of flavors of muffins, cookies, and all things sweet, your stomach will start growling at the site of all the sweet cupcakes that fill the front of the store. While there are plenty of treats to fill your sweet tooth don't fret as there are just as many savory options. 2Good2B has some of the tastiest and safest pizza, pot pies, quiches, sandwiches and salads to satisfy your gluten free needs. 

2Good2B Bakery and Cafe now has an online store where you can get these tasty treats shipped right to your door. They are made fresh to order, quick frozen and shipped directly to you! They offer fresh artisan breads, pastries, and entrees all 100% gluten free. Check it out here 

2Good2B Bakery and Cafe
204 N. El Camino Real, Suite H
Encinitas CA 92024
(760) 942-4663

Check them out on Facebook and follow them on Twitter or read some great reviews on Yelp!  

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Lunch with a Cavegirl

Meet Claudette Wilkins, founder and head chef of Cavegirl Confections; a health and fitness conscious company. I was lucky enough to snag some of Claudette's time for a delicious lunch of curry in Pacific Beach, Ca. We chatted about everything from our lives in San Diego, social media, the gluten free world and of course Cavegirl Confections and how this ambitious mamma got her company started. 

Claudette founded Cavegirl Confections in 2013 and has already gained a large fanbase, including chef and tv-host Andrew Zimmern. Claudette, who is a trained chef, was introduced to the crossfit-paleo lifestyle and began developing snacks that were pure, healthy, and fit her lifestyle needs. 

Cavegirl confections uses high quality ingredients like organic coconut oil and each small batch is made by hand. All of their products are gluten free, grain free, dairy free, and paleo approved. 

THIS. This beauty is Maple Bacon Granola. Yes, I said bacon. This granola is the perfect amount of sweet and salty. It is packed with protein from the variety of nuts and of course baaaacon. There are no fillers or artificial ingredients, so you aren't eating a bunch of nonsense with your granola. It contains walnuts, almonds, pecans, pistachios, pumpkin puree, applesauce, Vermont maple syrup, bacon, dried cherries, and cinnamon. How awesome is that ingredient list?

Cavegirl Confections ships nationwide so you can order this maple bacon granola along with other favorites like AB+J bars, Almond Butters, Cherry "Pie" Bites, Chocolate Hazelnut Granola, and tons of other gluten free + paleo snacks.

Head over to Cavegirl Confections to get your fix of healthy and super tasty paleo-approved snacks.

Follow Claudette!
Instagram- Cavegirlconfections
Twitter- CG_confections 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Fig Tree Cafe: A California Eatery

I was beyond excited to eat at the new location of Fig Tree Cafe at Liberty Station. I had tried Fig Tree Cafe in Hillcrest for New Years 2013 and had one of the best steaks of my life, so I knew that I was about to eat a tasty lunch. We sat on their beautiful outdoor patio. It looks like what I would want my backyard to look like. Classic, sweet, and comfortable. 

As any Gluten Free person knows, we always check the menu before going to eat somewhere. I knew that Fig Tree had TONS of options, but hey I like to plan out what I am going to eat and get excited about it. Whenever I eat at a restaurant that I am going to blog about I ask what should I order? What is the most ordered Gluten Free dish that I can't leave without trying? Well, on this special day, what I planned to eat was the same thing the wonderful manager told me I had to try. Sold, 100%. 

Alright guys, are you ready?! This is the Gluten Free Portobello Panini. It is GF breadcrumb crusted Portobello Mushroom + Wild Arugula + Cilantro Hummus + Goat Cheese + Jack Cheese + Balsamic Glaze on Gluten Free Multigrain Bread. 

This. sandwich. is. everything.

It was one of the best sandwiches I have ever had. It was packed with tons of flavor and had my favorite creamy goat cheese. The mushroom was crispy, crunchy, and went perfect with the balsamic glaze and bite of the arugula. The gluten free bread was from Deanna's Bakery (formally GNI). It toasted up and stayed soft enough to enjoy but not to where it crumbled apart. Definitely have been dreaming of this portobello paradise.

I honestly think one of my biggest pet peeves in life is the extra charge for a gluten free option. It's tooootally not fair right? But that's the way the gluten free cookie crumbles and we get used to overpaying. I spotted this no extra charge on the menu and had to point it out to you. Thank you Fig Tree for the gluten free french toast at the same prices as all those normies. 

Biggie Smalls joined us for lunch. I am not sure if it's dog friendly, but it was Biggie Smalls friendly. 

Make sure you head on over to Fig Tree Cafe at Liberty Station (also check out their Hillcrest location) The service is friendly and attentive and the food is amazing. It's a win for Gluten Free San Diego. 

Fig Tree Cafe: A California Eatery
2400 Historic Decatur Road Suite 103
San Diego, California 92106

(619) 821-2044

Monday, November 4, 2013

Dallas GFAF Expo

I am back! I survived driving in Texas! I spent an amazing weekend in Dallas/Plano Texas for the GFAF Expo. It is always awe-inspiring seeing so many gluten and allergen free companies in one giant room. Every single expo takes my breath away. Some of my old favorites were there, a ton of new delicious allergen free options, and I met some brilliant and inspirational people. From gluten free carbs galore, texas rain storms, girls night with cards of humanity, and spending the weekend with my gluten free family I couldn't have asked for a more perfect gluten free weekend.

A huge thanks to Holy Crap Cereal for sponsoring the bloggers. This awesome named company from Canada is a non-gmo, organic, gluten free, and vegan breakfast cereal. It is packed with nutrients and protein. It comes in a few different varieties so make sure to check them out to find your favorite! 

Drum roll please... My two favorites of the weekend!

I am a lipstick junkie. If you were to look in my purse right now there would probably be about 10 different lipsticks and balms. I really believe that lipstick completes any outfit. 
I have been a fan of Red Apple Lipstick from social medias and my blogger friends who swear by their products. I finally had the chance to play around with some Red Apple Lipstick and makeup.  Oh my goodness. These lipsticks are heaven. They are so smooth and come in the most beautiful vibrant colors. They are gluten free, paraben free, lead free, animal cruelty free, no animal parts, and vitamin E enriched for some pretty kissers. I went home with Strawberry Lips and Hibiskiss and have been wearing them everyday since! I can't wait to see them at the next expo so I can try the other great lip products and gorgeous make up.

I have tried a lot of gluten free pizza in my gluten free life. The good, the bad, the awful, and the cross-contaminated, i've had it all.  When I tried Smart Flour Foods Pizzas I immediately couldn't stop raving about it. I literally made sure all of my friends who were working different booths got some pizza. This is some of the best i've tried. They are certified gluten free so it's safe to eat and it tastes so good. 

I was introduced to a lot of great companies in Dallas. Some that were local Texans, some who traveled from Canada, Colorado, Arizona, California and even Australia. I love getting to meet the faces behind some of these new (or new for me!) 

Green Valley Organics is a certified humane farm from Northern California. I loved trying all the flavors of their Lactose Free Kefir. It is organic, gluten free, humane and tastes amazing. My favorite is the strawberry pomegranate but every flavor was delicious. The lactose free sour cream was smooth and creamy. Hopefully someday I will make it out to the farm for a visit! 

Local Oven is a Texas based company that creates some of the tastiest gluten free breads around. The rolls are so soft and have the best texture. They served them up toasted and I couldn't stop myself from going back for seconds or thirds. I went out for BBQ in Texas after the expo one night and so I got a double dose of Local Oven from the expo and from dining out in Texas. It's great that you can buy them online too! 

Freedom Foods has some really tasty cereals and gluten free products. I loved getting to try these cereals. They have a ton of other products too like biscuits, bars, pancake mixes with quinoa...yum, condiments, and spreads. Obviously, Australia knows what they are doing when it comes to great tasting gluten free options so thanks for bringing it over to us here in the states! Cheers! 

Living Now has tons of great mixes and certified gluten free flours. 

As always, it's a pleasure seeing some of my favorite companies and of course the people behind them. 

I loved spending a weekend with the lovely Whitney from Bakery on Main. My expo partner in crime. Bakery on Main still has my favorite oatmeal on the gluten free market. 

Always love getting to taste some Bard's GF Beer. This american lager is made from 100% Malted GF Sorghum. It's refreshing to hear about their high standards for keeping their beers safe and 100% gluten free. Bard's takes great care of their ingredients and creates a delicious beer. 

I am lucky and got to spend another weekend with my soul sister Erica from Celiac and the Beast. She is such an awesome human and just released her first book "Celiac and The Beast: A love story between a gluten-free girl, her genes, and a broken digestive tract"  I read the entire thing on the flight home from Dallas and was laughing through every page. It is so relatable for anyone with Celiac disease or a gluten intolerance. I absolutely recommend this book for everyone and anyone who is gluten free or knows someone who is. Thumbs up times a million. Buy it HERE

Nutra Summa was there sampling their pea proteins. I took home a vanilla! Nutra Summa has high quality nutritional supplements and they are gluten free too!

Taste Guru is a gluten free box of the month club. They send tasty samples of gluten free products straight to your door. It is an awesome way of finding new gluten free products to make GF living a bit easier. Plus it's a surprise every month! Taste Guru hand picks and tastes the products to make sure you get the best selections. You can sign up here and pick a plan that works for you. 

Always nice to see the New Planet guys! They brought out their new Brown Ale to sample. 

Enjoy Life for the win. Sampling some allergen free bars and plentils. Love their products!

Delight Gluten Free Magazine is one of my favorites. It has great gluten free living tips, GF recipes, GF travel, and so much more. I love reading each new issue more than the last.

Kyra Bussanich, 2 time Cupcake Wars Winner and cook book author was there sharing her knowledge and signing books. I can't wait to attempt every single recipe in there. Kyra is an inspiration. She owns a gluten free bakery Kyra's Bake Shop in Lake Oswego, Oregon. She's even hosting a cruise in May. I love me some Kyra!! (And the amazing Brandy Wendler, Mrs. Northwest and Celiac advocate) 

The G-Free Foodie Box Club! I love this monthly gluten free box. You can sign up Here! The monthly box club comes packed with tasty gluten free products. KC Pomering is like a gluten free fountain of knowledge so you know are getting great products in the G-Free Foodie box. 

Happy Family Brands has organic snacks and meals for babies and tots. I love these for the kids I babysit, but to be honest they make great snacks for adults too haha 

What an incredible weekend! The GFAF Expo is top notch. I can't wait to continue to attend these expos for years to come. See you in San Francisco!