The Best Tips from The Featured Gluten Free Bloggers of August (via www.glutenawayexpo.com)
Gluten Free Frenzy (Chandice P.)
"Use leftovers in fun new ways. Like making mashed potatoes into yummy potato balls. The kids will never know they are eating last nights dinner and you get to save some money!"
"Prepare the lunches early in the week or prepare them the night before to avoid running around early in the mornings. Focus on using naturally gluten-free foods like grapes, carrots, or really any veggies or fruits. Enjoy Life Foods has great snacks and Canyon Bakehouse has some of the best bread to make gluten-free sandwiches. There's tons of products out there now to make it easier so just plan ahead of time!"
"My #1 tip for school lunches is to have your child pick out a fun thermos at the beginning of the school year. Make extra dinner so you have leftovers and pack them for lunch. I have packed leftovers from all of the recipes above, gluten-free pasta, meatballs and even homemade gluten-free pancakes and waffles in a thermos. The kids love breakfast for lunch and having hot food a few days a week allows them to feel the same as if they were participating in a school lunch program. Even better though, since theirs is homemade!"
Keeley McGuire Blog (Keeley McGuire)
"Focus on the CAN haves instead of the CANNOT's. Food can be fun!"
My Plant Based Family (Holly Y.)
"Create a lunch box station with all of your favorite gluten-free products within easy reach for fast lunch packing."
Petite Allergy Treats (Laura O.)
"Plan Ahead. This just makes life easier, especially if you know your week is unusually full. I'll usually bake or cook (double batches of recipes) over the weekend but also organize snacks and other ready to grab items for a FULL week.
Instead of preparing one ziplock bag of popcorn, I'll pack 5 bags so on a busy weeknight I can just grab and toss a bag with the rest of the lunch. I have an old cardboard box from a Costco trip that has each week's snacks grouped together like applesauce pouches, granola bars and popcorn/chip bags.
Sandwiches can even be made in advance and frozen for quick grab depending upon the type of sandwich (this works well with avocado but not so much with lettuce). It takes more time 1 day to prepare everything but helps for 5 days straight."
Sarah Bakes Gluten Free (Sarah H.)
"Plan ahead! I always start packing lunches the night before, at least the non perishable items (crackers, applesauce pouches, chips, juice boxes, etc.). Then in the morning, all I need to do is make a quick sandwich or salami and cheese stacks, along with some sliced fresh fruit."
What The Fork Blog (Sharon L.)
"My tip for packing gluten free lunches is be prepared and plan ahead. I shop once a week and plan out all meals and snacks in advance so I know what I need and how much I need to get through the week."
The biggest tip we all recommend is to plan ahead and be prepared. Gluten-free lunches take a lot longer to put together than regular ones. Stock up on what gluten-free products that you know you're kid likes the best. Plan the night before so you aren't running around like crazy the next morning. Preparedness is key so do whatever you can ahead of time to make sure your child gets a great gluten-free lunch for back-to-school.
Make sure to check out more gluten-free tips, recipes, products and more at www.glutenawayexpo.com!