With the holidays coming up soon, parents with a child on the gluten-free diet face battles that other parents have no idea about. Schools serve lunch to children, but they are not prepared to feed those on a special diet, that have to pack a daily lunch.
What to send each day so your child will eat, and not get bored with the same old stuff can be quite challenging. Here are some amazing food idea’s I put together, hopefully to make life easier with feeding your family easy, delicious, gluten free foods for lunches, snacks or a anytime meal. Enjoy!
- Substitute Sun butter (from sunflower seeds) if your child is nut-free, or almond butter if they can’t have peanut butter. They taste just as good but are allergy friendly.
- Remind small kids not to trade any food with friends and not to try anything from anyone else.
- Pack a treat, even if its bite sized, or an encouraging note or stickers. It’s hard work being gluten free at school.
Totally awesome lunch ideas
- Sandwich breads that work well for PBJ’s: Pamela’s gluten-free bread mix, Udi’s, Bob’s Red Mills products
- Use Sun Butter, almond, or coconut spread if you can’t use peanuts. These are all great substitutes, but your kids won’t really taste a difference.
- Grilled cheese sandwiches: Try cutting in half then in threes to make finger sandwiches.
- Anything on a Panini: Cut in half or bite sized.
- Mini tea sandwiches on gluten-free bread: cucumber cream cheese, pesto, apple, watercress, etc.
- Waffle-wich: Gluten-free waffles from Van’s or homemade. I prefer Pamela’s gluten-free baking flour. Add ham, sliced green apples with maple syrup for dipping.
- Stick-wich: Gluten-free bread cubes, grape tomatoes, cheese, meat bites and lettuce all on a stick; use mustard for dipping
- Banana dog: Gluten-free hot dog bun with banana, butter and honey
- Rudi’s fancier version of the banana dog: Add gluten-free chili with cheese
- Polka dot sandwich: Strawberry cream cheese, raisins, banana slices
- Gluten-free deli meats: Bar S, Hormel, Oscar Mayer
- Rudi’s gluten-free tortillas or sandwich petals, corn or rice tortillas for quesadillas
- Rudi’s gluten-free tortillas or sandwich petals for wraps
- Lettuce wraps (using gluten-free soy sauce)
- Leftovers from dinner in a thermos
- Frito pie in a thermos: Gluten-free chili, Frito’s cheese
- Hard-boiled eggs
- Deviled eggs
- Hot dogs: Wrap in foil and slide it in a thermos (Many brands are gluten free so check labels). Rudi’s and Udi’s both have great gluten-free hot dog buns.
- Veggie burgers
- Ian’s or fresh cooked fish sticks
- Chicken nuggets: Ian’s or homemade
- Assemble your own tacos: Choose your own ingredients with hard shell or corn tortillas
- Bean salads
- Pasta salads full of veggies/seeds with Italian dressing or pesto; I find Tinkyada gluten-free pasta holds up best
- Mac and cheese: Homemade or Amy’s or Glutino
Be sure to check back for part 2 with many more options.