Category Archives: Gluten-free

Cucumbers and Onion Salad

It’s not summer without Cucumbers and Onion Salad!  Growing up, this was a frequent dish my mom served alongside the main course, oftentimes made with fresh veggies still warm from the garden.  Now, I serve it to my family, with a few adjustments to make it my own.


  • 1 large cucumber (you may need more, depending on the size of your cucumbers)
  • 1/2 c. white or yellow onion
  • 1/2 c. mayonnaise (gluten-free)
  • 2 T. red wine vinegar, wine vinegar, or raw apple cider vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a serving dish, whisk together mayonnaise and vinegar.
  2. Thinly slice the onion into half-moons.
  3. Slice the cucumber into discs.
  4. Gently toss the veggies with the mayonnaise dressing.
  5. Top with salt and pepper, to taste.
  6. Let marinate in the refrigerator for about 15-30 minutes before serving.

This recipe is completely flexible.  You can adjust the measurements to taste.  Usually, I don’t even measure.  Also, play around with the spices.  Try dill, garlic, thyme and more!


Symptoms of Gluten Intolerance

For nearly three years, I ran a support group for gut health issues sufferers.  There were over 12,300 members in the end.  The following is a list of symptoms many of those group members reported from having food sensitivities/allergies:

  • aching feet
  • acne
  • adrenal stress with unstable temperatures
  • allergy “shiners” (dark circles under eyes)
  • anxiety
  • autoimmune flare, including Hashimoto’s
  • bloating
  • brain fog
  • brittle nails
  • constipation
  • diarrhea
  • digestive upset/stomach ache
  • ears, itching
  • ears, drainage
  • eczema
  • eye pain
  • fatigue
  • fibromyalgia
  • gas, belching
  • hair loss
  • headache
  • heart burn/acid reflux/GERD
  • heart palpitations/tachycardia
  • hives
  • inflammation including back pain, carpal tunnel flare
  • itching internally
  • itchy skin
  • itchy throat
  • joint pain
  • low B12
  • malabsorption
  • migraines
  • rashes
  • runny nose
  • sinus congestion
  • sneezing
  • stomach cramping
  • swallowing issues
  • vomiting
  • water retention
  • weakness
  • weight gain/weight loss struggles

Link Up: All Things Pumpkin

If you’re a natural foodie and pumpkin lover, this is the hot spot for pumpkin recipes!

Soups & Entrees

Creamy Paleo Bacon Pumpkin Soup by Fed and Fit

Soup Is Medicine: 7 Spice Pumpkin Turkey Soup

Thai Curry Chicken Meatballs by One Lovely Life (Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Whole 30, Paleo)

Paleo Pumpkin Sausage Soup (AIP) by Beyond the Bite 4 Life

Meaty Rice-Stuffed Pumpkins by Paleo OMG

Pumpkin Cream Chicken Casserole by PaleoOMG

Pumpkin Cashew Coconut Curry over Coconut Rice by PaleoOMG


No Bake Pumpkin Tarts (Vegan, Paleo) by The Detoxinista

Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe by Deliciously Organic

Mini Cinnamon Doughnuts by Raia’s Recipes

Pumpkin Delights Cookies by Paleo Parents

Pumpkin Cookies by Whole New Mom

Pumpkin Pie Shake by Deliciously Organic

Dairy-free Pumpkin Cheesecake Cups by Primally Inspired

Pumpkin Fudge (Dairy-free) by The Coconut Mama

Easy Pumpkin Custard or Crustless Pumpkin Pie by Balanced Bites

Pumpkin Spice Cookie Cutter Cookies by Multiply Delicious

Paleo Pumpkin Bread by Elana’s Pantry

Pumpkin Mousse (Paleo, AIP)


Paleo Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer (Dairy-free) by Predominately Paleo

Beauty Products

Toxins are a huge concern in our health and beauty industry here in the United States.  I was astonished to find out that Europe bans over a THOUSAND toxic chemicals from their personal care products that the U.S. allows in ours!  Many of these are hormone disruptors, carcinogens, and neurotoxins.

Thankfully, we can check our products here on the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep database.

And thanks to consumer demand, finding chemical-free beauty products is becoming easier all the time.

However, I know that many of you, especially those of you with Celiac, need gluten-free products, as well.  Below is a resource for you in your search for products that meet your standards.

Nota Bene: I have not tried all of these products.  

Please, check with the manufacturer to make sure there haven’t been any changes since this list was created and always check product ingredient labels. 


Physician’s Formula

All products are gluten-free.

AfterGlow – Certified GF

Real Purity – “Most of Real Purity’s products are gluten-free. If there are any that you are particularly concerned about, please contact our customer service team.”

Southern Magnolia Mineral Cosmetics™ makeup is all natural, organic and gluten free.”

Alima Pure All of their products are GF.

Cocoon Apothecary – All of their products are GF.

 Willow Tree Minerals 100% natural.  I’ve never seen any of their product labels that suggest there might be gluten in them, but know your ingredients and check individual labels.

HoneyBee Gardens – Their products seem to be gluten-free.  But know your ingredients and check individual labels.

Jane IredaleThis page contains a list of ingredients that are not gluten-free.

NaturalJoy – This site has a category of GF products:

Arbonne – Not all arbonne products are GF.  See here:

Joppa Minerals  – On their Facebook page, they state that all of their products are GF except their Retinol Serum:

100% Pure products may not be GF.“Most of our products are gluten free. We are sensitive to this since we know many people suffer from gluten allergies. One common ingredient that contains gluten is Vitamin E. But the Vitamin E we use is gluten free because it’s derived from cold pressing rice bran.”

Bare Minerals is NOT gluten-free.“Many of our products do not contain ingredients derived from barley, oats, rye, spelt or wheat, which are commonly known sources of gluten. However, due to the wide range of raw materials and equipment used during the manufacturing of our products, we cannot confirm that our products are free from any traces of gluten. If you have specific questions or concerns regarding gluten, and the ingredients contained in our formulas, we recommend that you consult your physician.”

Other Beauty Products

Regarding ingredients in beauty products, this article has a list of ingredients to watch out for:

Eye Moisturizers

Vintage Tradition is a wonderful moisturizing cream made simple from 100% grass-fed beef tallow and essential oils.  It takes only a small amount to moisturize your face and neck, or body.  They also make a deodorant cream from tallow, olive oil, and essential oils. 

 Fat Face

Hair Products

Morrocco Method

Intelligent Nutrients

JÄSŌN has a line of GF products, including face wash, body, shampoo, conditioner, face cream.

Savonerrie – All products are GF


Desert Essence – List of GF products here:

Hair Coloring

Hairprint (not dye)



Natural Dyes


Check out my Lotion Bar & Lip Balm Recipe! You can also modify the recipe to make into a sunscreen or diaper rash ointment for babies.

Also, check out my Aluminum-free, Chemical-free Deodorant Recipe.

Kelly the Kitchen Kop (love that lady!) has a cool Deodorant Powder recipe:

Dry Shampoo Recipe



Gelatin Hair Mask

Nail Polish:

Lavender Body Oil, Body Scrub, and Salt Bath Bags

Tallow Body Balm

Natural Body Spray

All About Gluten

What is Gluten?

Gluten is a binding protein found in certain grains – all wheat (durum, semolina, faro, kamut, einkorn, graham, spelt), rye and barley.  (It’s also in triticale which is a mixture of wheat and rye.)  Gluten is what gives elasticity to dough that give it it’s shape. 

A Word About Oats

Oats do not naturally contain gluten.  (  However, there can be two problems with oats.  First, some, especially those who have Celiac, may have sensitivity to oats due to the protein avenin found in them, although not all with Celiac will have issues with oats.  (See:  Second, oats can also be a problem for those due to cross-contamination.

Those who are not sensitive to oats may prefer to buy certified gluten-free oats, which are processed in a facility where no gluten-containing grains are processed.  In addition, some like to soak their oats before cooking and consuming to reduce phytates (see Information on Soaking Grains, Nuts, Legumes to Reduce Phytates). 

Symptoms of Gluten Issues

Symptoms of gluten issues can be delayed.  Some people report having delayed symptoms around three days after consuming gluten, lasting days or even months.  Symptoms of gluten issues can include:

  • stomach ache
  • gas
  • bloating
  •  constipation
  • diarrhea
  •  leaky gut syndrome
  •  brain fog
  •  joint pain
  • tingling in fingers or feet
  •  headaches/migraines
  • chronic fatigue
  • infertility
  • hypothyroidism
  • ADHD Autistic behavior
  • and more

Note that not all people who have gluten issues have gastrointestinal symptoms.  I didn’t.


What to Look for on Labels

The following items contain gluten:

  • barley
  • barley malt
  • barley starch
  • breading and coating mixes or packets
  • communion wafers (see here for info on very low gluten-communion hosts)
  • couscous
  • croutons
  • flour
  • malt
  • matzo meal
  • natural or artificial flavoring or coloring
  • Panko
  • soy sauce
  • sprouted wheat
  • tabouli
  • wheat (durum, wheat germ, wheat bran, wheat meal, wheat stabilizers, wheat starch, white flour, whole wheat, einkorn)

Cross-Contamination in the Farmer’s Fields?

Beans and Buckwheat flour don’t naturally contain gluten, but cross-contamination in the farmer’s fields may be an issue if you’re really sensitive to gluten.  Educate yourself and use your judgment.

Also, additives can sometimes mean gluten:

  • dextrinhydrolyzed vegetable protein
  • starch or modified food starch (can be corn or other starches, too)
  • caramel color

Obvious gluten-containing foods like bread and crackers are easy to avoid.  But some “hidden” gluten-containing foods include:

  • beer
  • bouillon cubes
  • broth
  • brown rice syrup
  • candy
  • corn tortillas
  • dressings, like ranch
  • energy bars or protein bars
  • french fries (not just from cross-contamination in the fryer, some have wheat in the ingredient list)
  • imitation seafood like fake crab meat
  • lunch meat
  • marinades
  • oat bran or oat germ
  • pasta
  • rice like box mixes
  • spices and spice mixes
  • sauces, such as ketchup, honey mustard, barbecue sauce
  • soups

More info on gluten-containing grains and ingredients and contaminated ingredients from

Besides food, what else do I need to make sure is GF?

  • Beauty Products
  • Cleaning Products
  • Dental Products including dental glue, paste, etc.
  • lipstick, lip gloss
  • Make-up
  • Medications
  • Supplements
  • Play-doh
  • Vitamins and other Supplements

Worried about your beauty products?  Check out my list. 

Prepared Gluten-Free Foods

Be careful with prepared gluten-free foods.  Even though they might be gluten-free, they are often heavily processed and loaded with preservatives or sugar, which are not good for achieving or maintaining a healthy gut.  A good rule of thumb is to try to get foods as “whole” as they can get: meat, veggies, fruit, dairy, eggs, gains (if you can have them), avoiding allergens or sensitivities, of course.

Gluten Issues and Dairy

Some people with gluten issues have issues with dairy, at least until they heal their gut.  For those with Celiac, the villi that are damaged with Celiac Disease can’t produce the lactase enzyme, so depending on the extent of the damage, they may need to avoid lactose until the villi are healed enough to properly digest lactose.

Soaking Grains, Nuts, Legumes to Reduce Phytates

Many people, especially those who have gut issues, prefer to soak their oats overnight in luke-warm water, which helps reduce the phytates, which are difficult to digest.  The following links contain useful information about soaking grains, nuts, and legumes.

Fermented Sourdough Grains can be Gluten-free

Fermented grains can have health benefits for those with gut issues.  Read:

Flours, Starches, etc.

Eliminating gluten from your diet doesn’t mean you will have to miss the foods you enjoy, but you will have to find alternatives, if your gut health allows them.  Flours and starches that you can experiment with include:

  • Almond
  • Amaranth
  • Arrowroot
  • Brown Rice or White Rice
  • Buckwheat
  • Garbanzo
  • Coconut Garbanzo
  • Guar Gum
  • Millet
  • Nut Flours such as almond, hazelnut
  • Oats (certified gluten-free)
  • Potato Starch
  • Quinoa
  • Seeds such as Chia, Flax, Hemp
  • Tapioca Starch
  • Teff
  • Xanthan Gum

Note that Guar Gum and Xanthan Gum are binding agents which add elasticity, but they can become quite gummy when too much is used.

Gluten-free may not be enough for those with Leaky Gut Syndrome (consider fermented grains, at least):


Low-Gluten Communion Hosts

These communion hosts have an extremely low wheat and gluten content (less than 0.01% gluten), so they meet the requirements of strict churches, especially the Catholic Church which requires wheat+water only.

A friend suggested that carrying them in a pyx to prevent cross-contamination.  However, there is <0.01% gluten in the hosts.  So, really, this would be to prevent further cross-contamination.

Just to be clear, those with Celiac or those who are super sensitive to wheat or gluten might still have issues with these hosts.  If that’s you, you might talk with your pastor about receiving a small amount of the wine from a designated chalice (no cross-contamination).

Either way, it’s a good idea to talk with your doctor about whether or not these altar breads are an option for you, medically.

Benedictine Sisters of Perpetual Adoration

Pork Queso Flameado with Riced Cauliflower

This is a family favorite, although a bit on the spicy side for the kids.  It makes fantastic leftovers, too.


  • 8 slices of boneless pork loin, preferably from pastured pork
  • 1 organic red pepper, finely diced
  • 2 T. coconut oil for pan, divided
  • ? ground chorizo (I haven’t tried it yet, but I’d like to make this) (make sure it’s gluten-free, if you need to be GF)
  • 1 c. cream, half-and-half or whole milk
  • 1 c. Monterrey-Jack Cheese, finely shredded
  • 1 c. cilantro, chopped
  • 1 head cauliflower (or rice)


  1. Melt 1 tablespoon of coconut oil in a large skillet over high heat.  Then, reduce heat to medium.  Carefully, so as to not splatter hot oil on yourself, lay pork loin slices in the pan and cook until browned.  Remove loin from the pan.
  2. Melt 1 tablespoon coconut oil in pan over high heat.  Then, reduce to medium.  Add red pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until tender.  Remove from the pan.
  3. Over medium-high heat, add the Chorizo.  Break it up with a spatula and stir until cooked.
  4. Add red pepper back top the pan and stir to blend.
  5. Add cream and whisk.
  6. Once the cream is heated, add back in the pork loin pieces and reduce heat to medium-low.
  7. Meanwhile, steam cauliflower florets about 15 minutes or until tender.  Then, “rice” the cauliflower.  I like to use a potato masher for this.
  8. Serve 1-2 slices of pork per person topped with queso flameado sauce and cilantro on a bed of riced cauli or regular rice.

Serves 4-6.