What I Eat

I hear it all the time. It usually goes something like this...

Stunned Person: "Wait... so you can't eat dairy? Or gluten? OR soy!? But you can have butter, right?"
Me: "No--butter is a dairy product."
Stunned Person: "Oh. So that means you can't have eggs either."
Me: "No, eggs are from a chicken. Chickens and dairy do not fall into the same category."
Stunned Person: "So... what DO you eat?"

Assumptions about me being a vegetarian and eating a lot of tofu are common, and incorrect. Assumptions that I live on nothing but celery sticks and water creep in from time to time.

But people. Believe me. This couldn't be further from the truth. I eat.

I eat WELL.

When I made the big switch to a gluten, dairy and soy free diet, I had to re-think my shopping and cooking habits. But it really just boils down to a shift in my thought process, and a little bit of experimenting in the kitchen.

To get you started, here are some of the products I love and keep on hand:

Bread, Pasta, Etc.
Udi's brand bread, muffins, pizza crusts and granola. They're all delish!
Ancient Harvest Quinoa pasta. My favorite are the elbow macaroni.
Enjoy Life snack bars (chocolate, sunbutter crunch) and cookies. Great for on-the-go.
Crunchmaster crackers. I love the sea salt variety.
Koala Crisp cereal. What can I say? I'm a sucker for a good bowl of sweet cereal!

Dairy Replacers
Almond Breeze almond milk. Sweetened Original is my favorite.
So Delicious! Coconut Yogurt. (Read the labels. Not all SD products are soy free!)
Daiya Cheddar and Mozzarella Style Shreds are great on pizza or in a grilled cheese sandwich.
Coconut Bliss ice cream. Cappuccino? To die for.
Wayfare cheese spreads and sour cream. This is a new discovery... LOVE the hickory cheddar on my Crunchmaster crackers!

Sauces, Baking ingredients, etc.
Coconut Aminos, made by Coconut Secret is my soy sauce.
Spectrum Organic Shortening is great for baking, greasing pans, etc..
Natural Jif peanut butter, though I also like Sunbutter.
Earth Balance spread. A must-have, this will replace butter anywhere, any time! They also make a safe-to-eat Mayo, which I don't use often, but occasionally need for a recipe.
Enjoy Life chocolate chips and chocolate chunks are free of all major allergens.

I've said this before, but I think it's worth repeating:

When I started on this adventure, my main goal after feeling better was to find an exact replacement for each food I felt I was 'giving up.' I now know that not only is that not possible, it's not practical either. In order to be happy and content with what is out there, I've found that it is best not to seek a replacement. Instead, try to keep an open mind... just like you would if you were trying a new cut of meat, or a new flavor of ice-cream. I don't expect my package of Daiya Cheddar Shreds to taste like freshly grated Tillamook, but the Daiya sure does make a yummy toasted sandwich!