Gluten-Free Holiday Survival 101
Written by: Susannah Faulkner. Susannah serves as the Strategic Sales Manager at Udi’s.
The holiday season has descended upon us, menorahs and Christmas trees are out in full force, and you can feel the excitement in the air. The holidays are a time to enjoy the company of family and friends and indulge in everything from sugar cookies to lasagna.
If you have a gluten intolerance or other food sensitivity, we’ve assembled five steps that will ensure that you too will have a super jolly holiday season!
- The first time I was invited to my friend’s house for Christmas, I was terrified. I figured I would eat beforehand and gnaw on a few veggies while at the dinner. However, a few weeks before the big day, I decided to call my friend to talk over the menu and discuss which options would be safe for me. She had no problem using Udi’s bread for the stuffing (check out this great recipe here!) and almond milk for the mashed sweet potatoes. I was able to eat like a queen, thanks to just a simple phone conversation.
Know the secret culprits
- Spice blends? Gravy packets? Salad dressings? Cross contaminated dishes and utensils? Make sure to double check all spice blends and sauces, as they can often use flours or other mysterious “natural flavors.” You may want to bring your own gravy and salad dressing to safely compliment your host’s dishes. Check out this super easy gf gravy recipe here!
- Whether it’s Hanukkah, Christmas, or any other celebration, holidays can be hectic. Make sure you have a clear plan of where you are eating and when. This will help the hosts make sure they can accommodate you and, most importantly, avoid cross contamination (a random aunt may just dip into your special gf stuffing without knowing that it’s just for you!).
- One of the easiest ways to guarantee a flawless and plentiful holiday meal is to bring a dish or two to the celebration. I recommend bringing something that is normally full of gluten, such as a sweet bread or pie. Depending on how ambitious you are this time of year, you can also host the holiday gathering yourself and you’ll be guaranteed a safe and plentiful feast.
Lastly, take time to educate
- While you are blissfully enjoying your gluten friendly meal, make sure to talk to others about your dietary needs. This is a perfect opportunity to raise awareness about gluten sensitivities and explain to your friends and family what it all entails. The more they understand this issue, the better they will be able to accommodate you at future festivities!
Do you have any additional gluten free holiday survival tips?
We hope you enjoy your holidays and that they are filled with the merriment of loved ones and delectable gluten free treats!