A Wheat and Dairy Free Menu For Any Occasion

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Melinda Strauss
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No-Bake Lemon and Blueberry Cashew Cheesecake

I have begun living a gluten free, grain free, dairy free lifestyle.

This means I need to completely change my perspective on eating, especially on holidays, such as on the dairy-heavy holiday we just passed, Shavuot. For many people, eating gluten, grain and dairy free is not a lifestyle choice but rather a matter of life and death. For me, this is a choice I have made in order to take control over my eating habits and manage my type 1 diabetes.

My lifestyle entails a lengthy list of off-limits foods which include: wheat, beans, soy, corn, cheese, butter, milk, processed foods, so on and so forth.The list does seem a bit long and people tend to ask me if I have enough to eat or if I am always hungry. I can honestly say that I am full all day long.

I eat a diet consistent with foods that keep me full. I fill my meals with a lot of protein, nuts, an abundance of vegetables as well as natural carbohydrates like fruit and I indulge in dark chocolate when I feel like something extra sweet.

In order to enjoy holidays as well as maintain my healthy lifestyle, I comprised a menu rich in flavor and color that is sure to impress my guests and fill everyone up without any gluten, grain, dairy or processed foods. Try these delicious recipes, whether you are gluten-free, wheat-free, dairy-free or just plain want to eat healthy non-processed foods.

Mains:

Pistachio-Flaxseed Crusted Salmon

Pistachio Flaxseed Crusted Salmon

Many people think that a high-protein lifestyle mainly includes red meat and poultry, but salmon is another great option. This salmon entree encrusted in a nutrient-rich pistachio-flaxseed topping provides a nutty and crunchy texture that will be sure to fill you up.

MORE: Simple Salmon in 10 Minutes or Less

Caramelized Onion Spaghetti Squash Casserole

Caramelized Onion Spaghetti Squash Casserole

You won’t miss the dairy when you serve this casserole! The eggs in this recipe create a creamy and “cheesy” crust so divine that you might actually think you put mozzarella right in there.

Sides:

Roasted Asparagus with Green Onion Dressing

Roasted Asparagus With Green Onion Dressing

What would a healthy meal be without something green on the table? This crunchy asparagus adds a layer of texture to the menu and the green onion dressing certainly takes it up another notch.

Honey Roasted Sweet Potato Stuffed Apples

Honey Roasted Sweet Potato Stuffed Apples

I usually serve baked apples for dessert but I’ve made a special exception for the holidays. These tiny apples are filled with roasted sweet potatoes for a new twist on a sweet side dish.

MORE: A Gluten-Free Kugel Made From Corn and Wild Rice

Dessert:

No-Bake Lemon and Blueberry Cashew Cheesecake

No-Bake Lemon and Blueberry Cashew Cheesecake

What can I really say about this no-bake cashew cheesecake except that you will think you are actually eating dairy!

MORE: Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Egg-Free Delicious Strawberry and Chocolate Dessert

Here:

6 Life-Hacks To Help You On Your Healthy-Eating Journey:

1. Fat is fine, as long as it’s healthy fat:
Avocado, olive oil, nuts, coconut and almond butter are just a few examples.

2. Coconut will become your best friend:
Coconut oil, coconut milk, coconut cream, unsweetened shredded coconut, coconut sugar, coconut aminos (a replacement for soy sauce). The cooking and baking options are endless!

3. Read nutrition labels:
Many people think that when you eat gluten free, you can just buy all of the gluten free foods on the grocery store shelves, but many of those packaged items are filled with unhealthy fats and unnecessary additives to add flavor and texture.

4. Preparation is key:
Whether you go to school, work 9-5 or stay at home with your kids, it’s important to prepare in advance and always have healthy foods in your home. If you don’t have the right foods available, you are more likely to reach for unhealthy items. I always keep eggs, fresh fruit, fresh vegetables, lettuce, ground chicken or beef, and roasted chicken around for any meal of the day. For snacks, I like apples, dates, dark chocolate, and almond butter.

5. You do have willpower:
If you’re worried that you won’t be able to give up your favorite grains and snacks, give it a try! You’d be surprised that when you give up those pretzels, you actually crave them less and less.

6. You don’t have to drink black coffee:
Just because you can’t put milk or dairy creamer in your coffee doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a cup of coffee in the morning. I love So Delicious Coconut Milk Creamer in my coffee and tea with a sprinkle of coconut sugar.

As seen in the Joy of Kosher with Jamie Geller Magazine

Shavuot Cover magazine 2014

May/June 2014

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