Happy Friday! After a long week with two cars that broke down, I’m sure ready for the weekend (and a glass of wine or two….maybe three)! 🙂
For my Friday Five this week, I’m going to share some of my favorite gluten-free items. I started experimenting with eliminating gluten from my diet at the beginning of the year because I was having some stomach issues. I cut it out of my diet completely for about 2 months, and in those 2 months, I felt great! Here’s the problem….I love bread, pizza and pasta! I basically love just about everything made with gluten. My love for all these things forced me to hunt for gluten-free alternatives…and I found some!
Here are some of my favorite gluten-free alternatives to some of my favorite foods! Most of the items on my list are from Trader Joe’s. I’ve found they have the best selection of gluten-free foods that actually taste good. I also love to go out to eat and I found a gluten-free pizza that tastes very close to the real thing! So, I’ll start with that!
1. CPK’s Gluten-Free Pizzas
➜ How great does that pizza look? Are you hungry yet? The gluten-free selection at California Pizza Kitchen is fabulous and their pizzas are my favorite. They offer five of their most popular pizzas prepared using certified gluten-free ingredients…and they taste great! Here’s a shot of their gluten-free pizza menu and they also have other gluten-free options on their menu as well. It’s a great place to dine out if you’re trying to eat gluten-free.
2. Trader Joe’s Gluten-Free Plain Bagels
➜ I grabbed these on a whim because my husband was smoking a salmon one weekend and I couldn’t pass up having some on a bagel with cream cheese, capers, and onions! They are a pretty great substitute! I didn’t feel like I was missing out on anything by having a gluten-free bagel rather than your store-bought bagel. Now, these won’t stand a chance against a great bagel from a bakery, but for a store-bought substitute…..they’re definitely worth trying.
3. Trader Joe’s Brown Rice & Quinoa Fusilli Pasta
➜ I grabbed this Brown Rice & Quinoa Fusilli pasta from Trader Joe’s along with their Black Bean Rotini to compare them both one night because I was making pasta for the family. The Brown Bice & Quinoa pasta was a clear winner….a very clear winner! The Black Bean pasta was super mushy and tasted exactly like black beans, which isn’t good when you are covering it with pasta sauce and expecting it to taste like pasta. The Brown Rice & Quinoa pasta tastes good, has the consistency of traditional pasta noodles and satisfied my craving & love for pasta! It gets a thumbs up in my book!
4. Trader Joe’s Gluten-Free Hamburger Buns
➜ Growing up in Kansas City, I have a strong love for grilling out! I love being able to throw some burgers on the grill with some corn on the cob and enjoy dinner outside with the family. It’s just not the same without the bun! 🙂 There are definitely times when I get rid of the bun just to cut some carbs out of my diet, but on those days when I want the full experience, I use these hamburger buns from Trader Joe’s. I’ll warn you, they don’t taste like traditional hamburger buns….but they do the job. I recommend throwing the buns on the grill to toast them as it makes a huge difference!
5. Trader Joe’s Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes
➜ Last but definitely not least, dessert!! I love dessert. I don’t eat it too often but on the weekends I do enjoy a treat on occasion. It’s pretty easy to find gluten-free dessert recipes and I often choose fresh berries with whipped cream or something else on the healthier side. However, there are those times when I just want something chocolate and not good for me. 🙂 We all have those days! These cupcakes are legit and give me that dose of chocolate and sugar I want.
For those of you that are gluten-free or trying to reduce the amount of gluten in your diet, give some of these things a try! Also, if you have any favorites I’d love to hear them!