Cooking with (Gluten-free) Beer: A Safe Twist on Old Favorites

“Ugh!” you’re probably saying, “Enough with the vegetable recipes!”

It’s true that we’ve gone a little green lately – gluten-free ways to cook kale, artichoke, cabbagey slaw, etc. Today we’ll go in the opposite direction: back to beer.

We talk a lot about beer, because it seems to be the stumbling block for a lot of celiacs diagnosed in adulthood. There are gluten-free beers, and they’re available in an increasing number of restaurants, bars and grocery stores.

But beer isn’t just for drinking. It’s also for eating. Well, sort of. There are lots of recipes that call for beer, and they can be easily modified to fit a gluten-free crowd.

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Tortilla! Tortilla! Gluten-Free Tortillas

Tortillas are an essential staple in Mexican cuisine and they date back to 10,000 BC when they were originally made by Aztecs and Mayans. They’re also extremely versatile in the modern kitchen and can be prepared in a number of deliciously gluten-free ways. While wheat tortillas are off-limits to those with gluten intolerance, many brands of corn tortillas are made without any gluten-containing ingredients (although some brands have a risk of cross-contamination). However, if you are craving a true wheat-style tortilla, there are some gluten-free brands to be found.

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Canadian Labeling Debate Ends with a Victorious Beer Industry

The other week, Caty posted here about the Canadian debate over whether or not beer should be labeled as containing gluten.

I side with those of you who commented: better safe than sorry. Even if most of us know that beer is not safe for people with celiac disease – there are always newly diagnosed people who might not be so sure. Why take the risk?

Painted labels like these went a long way towards the beer industry's victory

As for the argument that it’s like requiring ketchup to have a “Contains Tomatoes” warning – well, to-go coffee cups have a “Hot Contents” warning, so why not?

Unfortunately, the powers that be didn’t agree with us. The Canadian beer industry has won the fight – for now.

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Safeway Rolls Out "SimpleNutrition" Labels, "Gluten Free" is One of Them

bag of groceries
Image via InsideSocial

Safeway, North America’s third-largest supermarket chain, has been working hard over the last few years to build a reputation as a “healthy” grocery store – my boyfriend calls it “Whole Foods lite” – and it looks like it’s starting to pay off. In 2008, this CNN study named Safeway the second healthiest grocery store in America, beating out Trader Joe’s and coming in second only to – yep – Whole Foods itself.

Safeway’s newest initiative is SimpleNutrition, a program designed to alert shoppers to the best, most nutritious aspect of a given food. Safeway’s shelves are now covered in colorful stickers that say things like “Sugar Free,” “Low Fat,” “Good Source of Calcium,” and “Good Source of Iron.” Safeway breaks down the categories this way:

There are 22 benefit messages included in the program encompassing two groups of messages: those that meet lifestyle or dietary needs and those that meet specific nutrition or ingredient criteria.

There are 18 types of the latter “benefit message” – things like “Lean Protein” and “100% Juice” – and only 4 lifestyle benefit messages. Guess which lifestyle made the cut?

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Another Easy Veggie Boost: Gluten-free Slaw

I’ve been getting really into slaw lately.

Maybe it’s because cole slaw is often the “safe” choice of sides when I’m out to eat, so I’ve developed some strict parameters for tasty slaw.

Maybe it’s this Gluten-free Girl winter slaw recipe, which lodged itself in a corner of my brain a long time ago. And was knocked back into center stage by the radish salad a friend of mine whipped up last month.

this was lunch, along with some gf tomato soup

Maybe it’s because cabbage is cheap and I’m on a budget.

Whatever the reason, I’ve been slawing up a gluten-free storm. It’s one of those flexible dishes that stretches and contracts to maximize whatever you’ve got in your fridge, is generally gluten-free by default, and can easily be shifted to accommodate vegans or über-carnivores alike.

But what’s the key to a good, gluten-free slaw?

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