2011 Gluten-free holiday guide: 10 terrific gift ideas

It is that time to pull out your list and start shopping and gift giving.  While it may seem difficult to come up with a good gift for your friend or loved one on the gluten-free diet, the possibilities are limitless.  Listed below are the top 10 ideas, in my opinion, that would make excellent and well appreciated gifts.

Remember, it is the thought that counts!

1.  Subscription(s)

To a magazine that covers events regarding the gluten-free lifestyle:

2.  Cooking Classes – local chefs offer cooking classes dedicated to cooking gluten free. This can be a great opportunity not only to learn how to cook gluten free, but to learn how to eat and cook healthful foods.

  • Cook’s Warehouse offer gluten-free cooking classes taught by cook book authors and local chefs.
  • Hal’s Kitchen in Sandy Springs offers gluten-free cooking classes taught by Robbie Medwed of Dr. Sweet’s Cake Emporium and their staff.

3. Consultation – there are a number of dietitians and gluten-free consultants who offer private consultations to help clients with: meal planning, weight loss, vitamin deficiencies, dining out, grocery store tours, kitchen makeovers, etc.

4. Trip – how exciting would it be to take a trip to Italy or Columbia with a tour company that has coordinated all of the details including gluten-free meals?  The two trips listed below sounded the most exciting to me, but I am sure there are more out there.

5. Apps –  there are a number of iPhone applications and some for Android designed for those following a gluten-free diet.  Here are some of the more popular apps I have heard of:

o   Is That Gluten Free

o   Is That Gluten Free? Eating Out

o   iEatOut Gluten & Allergen Free

o   Gluten-free Groceries by Triumph Dining

o   GlutenScan

o   My Grocery Master

o   Easy Gluten Free Recipes by Triumph Dining

o   GF Disney – Gluten and Allergen Free Disney by GlutenFree Passport

6. Drinks – to celebrate the gluten free lifestyle. Wine and champagne are made from grapes, so they are gluten free. Distilled alcoholic beverages are gluten free as long as nothing glutenous is added after distillation, which would be unusual.

7. Gift Certificates

8. Baked Goods/Gift Baskets

Baked Goods – what better time to splurge on a tantalizing gluten-free treat than during the holidays.  I have listed some of my favorite products and I sure hope Santa brings some of them to me!

  • 479 Popcorn – is a line of gourmet popcorn that contains no GMOs, no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives, no trans fats and it is naturally gluten free.
  • Fat Toad Farm – makes caramel sauces from goats milk in four flavors (Original, Vanilla     Bean, Cinnamon and Coffee Bean) that can be purchased by the jar, or as a gift pack.     A great gift idea for the dairy-free person in your life.
  • Happy Balls – Kentucky Bourbon Balls – handmade with only the finest ingredients including a 9-year-old single-barrel bourbon.  They are made from an old family recipe    that Ron’s Aunt Happy gave him many years ago, hence the name ‘happy balls’.
  • Penzey’s Spices – offers a number of gift boxes that can be ordered online, of you can purchase a gift card and let them pick out their own spices.  Those of here in Georgia can   stop by their new store in Sandy Springs.
  • The RedHead – Bacon Peanut Brittles
  • Vosges Haut Chocolate – offers a selection of chocolate bars, caramels, truffles and more. All of their chocolate is gluten free, but not all of their products are, so make sure you know what you are purchasing.  I personally love their Bacon Bar, but there are so many great flavor combinations from which to choose.

Gift Baskets

  • Amazon.com – offers a plethora of gluten-free themed gift baskets.
  • Gifts Gone Gourmet – gluten-free gift basket with gourmet foods and treats.
  • Glutensmart – offers premade gluten-free gift baskets complete with basket, bow and a      teddy bear.
  • Gluten Free Gratefully – offers gourmet gluten-free cookies in traditional and holiday flavors in festive gift wrap.
  • Gotta Eat Sweets – makes truffipops and truffibites that are a ‘fusion’ of truffle and       brownie. They come in flavor combinations such as lemon cheesecake, white chocolate, raspberry dark chocolate or dulce de leche milk chocolate, as well as many others. Gift wrapping and custom ordering is available.
  • Happy Belly Bags – has a nice selection of gluten-free gift bags that include cook books,     kitchen gadgets and of course gluten-free food.
  • Helping Hands Bakery – this bakery was started by a mother of three autistic children who was determined to make sure her boys would learn to be self reliant and to ensure other children in the community with special needs would have training and jobs as well.     They offer a number of goodie and sample packs.
  • I Can Have That! – offers a number of themed gift baskets that indicate the allergen status of its contents including: gluten free, egg free, dairy free, soy free, nut free and peanut free.
  • It’s Only Natural – offers customizable gluten-free gift bags and boxes with a wide range of choices: sweets, snacks, coffee, teas, soaps, spices, cook books, eco home items and more.
  • Peeled Snacks – offers decorative tins filled with fruit and nut selections.
  • So Lucky – offers a selection of themed gourmet gift boxes filled with gluten-free foods. There is a $10 flat shipping rate to anywhere in the U.S.

9. A new appliance or kitchen gadget – like a nice toaster oven, rice cooker, food processor, or even a bread machine. You could also give a new set of utensils, or a good knife and a cutting board, cookie cutters, a new kitchen timer, potholders or a festive apron. Some of the more interesting appliances/gadgets I have seen are:

  • Beater Blade – a blade for your blender that continuously beats, scrapes and folds ingredients, which eliminates the need to hand scrape the bowl and prevents build up on beater blades.
  • Blender – Vita Mix, Ninja and Blentec are the three highest rated high-performance blenders.
  • Doughnut Pan or Doughnut Cutter
  • Juicer – Breville
  • Kitchen Scale
  • Non-stick baking mat – Silpat makes multiple sizes that keep food from sticking to a baking dish/pan and they can be used to keep pie crusts, biscuits and cut out cookies from sticking to the counter
  • Toast it – Toaster bags can be used to protect your gluten-free bread and allow it to be toasted in any toaster, or toaster oven.  Perfect for travel or for the office.

10. A tax-deductible donation to a national organization in the name of your favorite Celiac. There are a number of great organizations out there raising awareness about celiac disease:
• National Foundation for Celiac Awareness • Gluten Intolerance Group of North America

Most people spend time with family and friends during the holidays. Keep in mind that Celiac Disease is genetic. First degree relatives (parents, children, siblings) have a 1 in 22 chance of developing Celiac, and second degree relatives (aunts, uncles, cousins, etc.) have a 1 in 39 chance. This is a great time to remind the people you love to get tested.

Article Courtesy:  Jennifer Harris

One thought on “2011 Gluten-free holiday guide: 10 terrific gift ideas

  1. Great gluten free ideas.

    Whenever I need something gluten free I make rice crisp treats. It's fast, really easy to make and it's delicious.

    I melt 2 chocolate bars (what ever flavor I like) in the microwave, then add rice crisps and stir. I add rice crisps until all the crisps are covered with chocolate but don't "swim" in it.

    Then I put it in a silicone dish and flatten the crisps with a spoon until the surface is flat and uniformed.

    I put it in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes.

    While waiting I melt 2 more chocolate bars and add 2-3 oil spoons to the chocolate and stir it. Then I apply it on the chocolated rice crisps and wait for it to harden.

    I take it out of the silicone dish and cut it to little squares.

    20 minutes all together – and it takes less than that until they're disapear (atleast in my family)…

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