Gluten Free Doesn’t Mean Taste Free!

Being gluten free has its pros and cons. I really don’t mind it much, which is really saying something because before I worked up to it, I thought I’d die without pizza and bread and desserts. Nowadays I hardly miss them.

Like any other lifestyle change, you get used to it, and you find replacements for your old favorites. Plus, I wouldn’t trade the way I feel now for the way I felt when I was eating gluten for the tastiest artisan bread in the world.

Eating at home is no big deal. I know what to buy and what not to buy, and I prepare plenty of delicious gluten-free fare every day.

Eating out is a different story. It is a bit stressful to eat at a restaurant. I always have to inform the waitress of my food restrictions and pray the people in the kitchen get it right. Fortunately most restaurants are quite accommodating, and gradually more and more are getting on the bandwagon and learning to cater to a variety of common food sensitivities so even that isn’t such a big deal anymore.

There is really just one situation that makes eating gluten free almost impossible — the social gathering.

When I attend a general social gathering where food is served and you have no ability to order to your specifications, I usually don’t eat anything at all. It’s not fun, but it’s the safest way to ensure that I don’t get contaminated and spend the next week in pain.

I attend many events with my various blogging engagements, and I have learned to eat ahead of time and bring along a gluten-free bar in case I get hungry. I don’t really mind, but it takes some forethought and planning, and it can get expensive — especially attending conferences, when you need to eat out for all three meals a day.

You can imagine my excitement when I arrived at the Cheap Sally party at BlogHer and discovered that Udi’s Gluten Free Foods was one of the sponsors.

udis gluten free foods

I’m a HUGE fan of Udi’s. They make some of the tastiest and highest quality gluten free foods around. I like them so much that I wrote a series of posts last winter for their Gluten Free Toolkit.

Their bread is actually palatable (no small feat for the gluten-free among us) and their cookies and muffins are delicious. I actually serve their cookies to company, and they never know they are gluten free.

At the Cheap Sally party, I was able to eat a hamburger ON A BUN for the first time in nine months. (Udi’s provided the buns!) Then I spent most of the night hanging out in the Udi’s booth noshing on Snickerdoodles and Chocolate Chocolate Chip Muffins (more like cake than muffins.)

udis chocolate muffins

My kids like their cookies so much that I have to hide them or they will be all gone before I get a chance to have my first one. These are ideal for sending to school if your child (or someone in his/her class) is on a gluten-free diet. Everyone likes them. Seriously. Everyone who stopped by the Udi’s booth at Cheap Sally remarked how good they were.

Nowadays with so many people living gluten free, it’s nice to know that you can pick up something yummy to serve that your guests can eat, even if you aren’t restricted to gluten-free foods.

If you have kids with gluten-free friends, be sure to pick up some Udi’s cookies when they are at your house for sleepovers and birthday parties. Trust me, sitting out while everyone else is eating dessert is no. fun. at. all. It’s hard enough as an adult, but for a kid, it has to be especially rough. You can also pick up some Udi’s gluten-free bagels or muffins to have on hand for breakfast, and they’ll love you for it.

Try them out and see what you think. Even if you don’t have to eat gluten free, Udi’s products are made with high quality, natural ingredients that you can feel good about serving your family.

This post is sponsored by Udi’s Gluten Free. As always, all opinions are my own.