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Looking for an easy, egg-free snack or breakfast? These naturally sweetened gluten-free orange raisin muffins are the perfect hand-held treat that both kid and adults love!

Gluten-Free Egg-Free Orange Raisin Muffins

Looking for an easy, egg-free snack or breakfast? These naturally sweetened gluten-free orange raisin muffins are the perfect hand-held treat that both kid and adults love! Free of eggs, dairy, gluten, and nuts, these muffins are very allergy friendly! Looking for an easy, egg-free snack or breakfast? These naturally sweetened gluten-free orange raisin muffins are the perfect hand-held treat that both kid and adults love!

Not sure if it’s just my kids or a kid thing in general, but my kids LOVE muffins. Really any hand-held, round bread. If I make sourdough bread, they enjoy it. If I make sourdough rolls you’d think I hadn’t fed them in three days the way they eat them.

I guess kids just like to eat with their hands. Which explains why my kids refuse to use utensils no matter what kind of food they are eating.

But muffins are definitely a favorite around here.

Which is why I find myself baking muffins a LOT!

Egg Sensitivity in Babies

A few months ago I had to cut eggs back out of my diet and my toddler’s diet. We were off eggs for about a year (almost since birth) and then reintroduced them. I think eggs are one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet. But as much as I love eating the eggs fresh from our hens, they were giving my son a diaper rash. They were also giving me phlegm in my throat on a daily basis.

Eggs seem to be a common sensitivity in babies these days. It’s unfortunate since eggs provide many essential vitamins and minerals.Looking for an easy, egg-free snack or breakfast? These naturally sweetened gluten-free orange raisin muffins are the perfect hand-held treat that both kid and adults love!

Some people can tolerate eggs in baked goods even if they can’t eat plain eggs. But we are generally not that fortunate. If a food is bothersome at all…it has to be cut completely. For some reason it seems to be worse when my kids are very young too.

My five-year-old was egg-free for at least the first two years of life. Now she can eat them every day!Looking for an easy, egg-free snack or breakfast? These naturally sweetened gluten-free orange raisin muffins are the perfect hand-held treat that both kid and adults love!

Egg-Free Muffins

Eliminating eggs from your diet definitely eliminates some food options. This includes not only egg dishes, but many baked goods. Yes, our beloved muffins had eggs!

Thankfully there are some great egg substitutes for baking. My favorite way to bake egg-free is with gelatin.

That is exactly what I do in these allergen-free orange raisin muffins.

Mix the juice of a couple oranges with gelatin. Then add hot water to dissolve. It’s the perfect binder to make egg-free muffins.


Make sure you use high quality gelatin in your baking. We always use Perfect Supplements gelatin. It is the only gelatin that is certified glyphosate free. You can stock up on Perfect Supplements gelatin HERE with the code TAKE10 for 10% off your order.


Baking Without Refined Sugar

An added bonus of these orange muffins is that they contain no refined sweeteners. Maple syrup or honey combined with orange juice provides plenty of flavor and sweetness.

The raisins add a little extra natural sugar as well. Dried cranberries or even mini chocolate chips would work too.

We prefer to top gluten-free orange muffins with a generous pat of butter to help metabolize the carbohydrates. The flavor contrast with the salty butter and sweet orange is another plus.

Looking for an easy, egg-free snack or breakfast? These naturally sweetened gluten-free orange raisin muffins are the perfect hand-held treat that both kid and adults love!Easy Allergen-Free Snack for Kids

Gluten-free orange raisin muffins make a great addition to a quick weekday breakfast, a mid-morning snack, or packed up in a lunch box.

Combine it with a nourishing drink, a bowl of soup made with bone broth, or another form of protein and fat like bacon, sunbutter, or sausage. You really can’t go wrong!

Grab a couple organic oranges, some Perfect Supplements gelatin, and your favorite gluten-free flour blend and whip up a batch of egg-free orange raisin muffins today!

It also helps to have a very cute assistant for quality control. My toddler gave these muffins his seal of approval!Looking for an easy, egg-free snack or breakfast? These naturally sweetened gluten-free orange raisin muffins are the perfect hand-held treat that both kid and adults love!

Gluten-Free Egg-Free Orange Raisin Muffins

A quick allergen-free muffin with no refined sweeteners and a bright orange flavor.

Course Breakfast, Snack
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Servings 12
Author Mary | Just Take A Bite

Ingredients

  • 1 cup white rice flour
  • 1/2 cup sorghum flour
  • 1/2 cup amaranth flour
  • 1 tsp. psyllium husk
  • 1/2 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 cups unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 organic oranges juice (about 1/2 cup) and zest
  • 1/3 cup avocado oil or olive oil
  • 6 Tbsp. maple syrup or honey
  • 3 tsp. gelatin
  • 1/4 cup hot water
  • 1/4 cup raisins, cranberries, or chocolate chips optional

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F.

  2. Line or grease a 12-cup muffin tin.

  3. In a large bowl combine the flours, psyllium husk, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and orange zest.

  4. Add the applesauce, oil, and maple syrup. Mix well.

  5. In a small bowl combine the gelatin and orange juice (about 1/2 cup). Let sit 1 minute.

  6. Add the hot water to the gelatin mixture and stir until dissolved.

  7. Immediately add to the batter and mix well.

  8. Stir in raisins.

  9. Fill muffin cups 3/4 full.

  10. Bake 35-40 minutes, until golden.

Recipe Notes

This makes 12 large muffins, 16 medium-size muffins, or 24 mini muffins.

Missing tacos due to dietary restrictions? Bring back taco night with this simple night-shade free cucumber salsa. Free of allergens and nightshades, and low in Vitamin A, it's sure to be a hit!

Nightshade-Free Cucumber Salsa

Missing tacos due to dietary restrictions? Bring back taco night with this simple night-shade free cucumber salsa. Free of allergens and nightshades, and low in Vitamin A, it’s sure to be a hit!Missing tacos due to dietary restrictions? Bring back taco night with this simple night-shade free cucumber salsa. Free of allergens and nightshades, and low in Vitamin A, it's sure to be a hit!

Sometimes when I’m trying to meal plan and just can’t think of anything to put on the menu, I crowd source. In other words, I ask my kids.

It’s inevitable that at least one of them suggests tacos (though I try not to bore my husband and actually serve them every week).

It’s usually my son making the suggestion. He has been my taco meat chef since he was six, and jumps at the chance to cook his “famous” taco meat (you can get his taco seasoning recipe here).

Taco night has always been one of my favorites too, from childhood until now. I mean, who doesn’t love a good taco?

Vitamin A Detox Diet Tacos

Our tacos have certainly evolved over the years, through all sorts of food allergies and dietary restrictions. These days taco night is a bit more challenging on the Vitamin A Detox Diet. No tomatoes, peppers, avocado, or cheese.

I know that may not sound like much is left.

But we still have delicious tacos regularly!Missing tacos due to dietary restrictions? Bring back taco night with this simple night-shade free cucumber salsa. Free of allergens and nightshades, and low in Vitamin A, it's sure to be a hit!

One key component is this nightshade-free cucumber salsa.

Not only is it easy to make, it’s totally delicious! Even my pickiest eater loves it.

Nightshade-Free Cucumber Salsa

There is no cooking involved to make cucumber salsa. The most work you’ll have to do is peel and chop a cucumber. Or better yet, delegate it to your kids. My oldest loves to make cucumber salsa for the family when we’re having tacos.


Teach your kids to cook with the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse!

Check it out HERE!


Once the veggies are prepped you just mix all of the ingredients in a jar and let it chill for a few minutes. So, you can still have delicious salsa even if you don’t remember to make it until fifteen minutes before dinner!Missing tacos due to dietary restrictions? Bring back taco night with this simple night-shade free cucumber salsa. Free of allergens and nightshades, and low in Vitamin A, it's sure to be a hit!

This nightshade-free cucumber salsa tastes amazing as a dip with organic tortilla chips.

Most of the time we use it on tacos, taco bowls, or nachos (topped with this gooey dairy-free cheese sauce!).

What is on VAD Diet Tacos?

For VAD Diet-safe tacos we use either organic blue corn hard shells (I like this brand) or homemade white corn soft shells, and fill them with seasoned ground beef or chicken.

Toppings include:

  • Cucumber salsa
  • Grated zucchini cheese (grab the recipe here)
  • Sour cream (my kids can have a small amount of cream)
  • Black beans or refried pinto beans (I cook them in the Instant Pot)

Our tacos are simple, but so, so delicious!Missing tacos due to dietary restrictions? Bring back taco night with this simple night-shade free cucumber salsa. Free of allergens and nightshades, and low in Vitamin A, it's sure to be a hit!

What Are Nightshades?

Most healing diets eliminate nightshades. These include tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, and potatoes, plus a few other less-common foods like goji berries, ashwagandha, Cape gooseberries, ground cherries, and garden huckleberries.

For many people nightshades are a pain – literally. Nightshades cause calcinosis, a calcification of soft tissues, due to calcitriol. Calcitriol is a very potent hormone, possibly the most powerful hormone in your body!

Calcitriol tells your intestines to absorb calcium. Too much can quickly lead to hypercalcemia. This is the cause of calcium deposits in your soft tissue, also known as joint pain, muscle stiffness, arthritis, coronary artery disease, and more.

If you struggle with any type of chronic pain or weakness, consider cutting nightshades out of your diet. Or if you have issues with osteoporosis you might want to consider eliminating nightshades as well.

Here is a a great article on nightshades if you want to read more!

We do still eat some potatoes (though not if they are green or sprouting!). But we avoid all of the other nightshades.Missing tacos due to dietary restrictions? Bring back taco night with this simple night-shade free cucumber salsa. Free of allergens and nightshades, and low in Vitamin A, it's sure to be a hit!

Salsa Without Tomatoes

Now even if you are nightshade-free you can enjoy chips and salsa or everyone’s favorite taco night with this super simple cucumber salsa. Having salsa without tomatoes is totally doable and delicious.

What is taco night like at your house? What are your favorite toppings?

5 from 1 vote
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Nightshade-Free Cucumber Salsa (VAD Diet)

A quick and easy salsa free of nightshades.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Servings 4
Author Mary | Just Take A Bite

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cucumber peeled and diced
  • 1 1/2 tsp. apple cider vinegar or white vinegar
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder of 1 clove fresh garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp. organic cane sugar
  • 1/4 cup white onion, diced optional

Instructions

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a jar.

  2. Mix and chill for at least 10 minutes.

  3. Store in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Are you ready to overcome Vitamin A Toxicity and get your child back to full health? I've got all of the details of the Vitamin A Detox Diet to get your started.

How to Overcome Vitamin A Toxicity: The Vitamin A Detox Diet

VAD Diet updateAre you ready to overcome Vitamin A Toxicity and get your child back in balance? I’ve got all of the details of the Vitamin A Detox Diet to get your started.

Are you ready to overcome Vitamin A Toxicity and get your child back to full health? I've got all of the details of the Vitamin A Detox Diet to get your started.

I hope you’ve been enjoying this series on Vitamin A Toxicity/Hypervitaminosis A. I also hope you haven’t been too overwhelmed with information. It’s a lot to take in. And I’m only scratching the surface!

Today we’re discussing what you’ve all been waiting for – how to overcome Vitamin A Toxicity.

It’s really quite simple.

I also wanted to note that I will be focusing on the Vitamin A Detox Diet in relation to children since that is my area of specialty. That being said, everything will be applicable to adults as well.

Finally, know that this is VERY NEW information. So new things are coming to light left and right. I will do my best to keep up with anything that changes and give you the most up-to-date information.

How Does Your Child Get Vitamin A Toxicity?

A person becomes toxic when the liver is saturated with a particular toxin and can’t handle any more. Too much toxin = toxic. Once your bathtub is full of water it will start spilling over the edges. You can’t truly drain the tub until the faucet is completely turned off.

In other words, you have to stop taking in Vitamin A (intox) in order for your body to get the built up Vitamin A out (detox). You need the Vitamin A Detox Diet.

To clarify I do NOT mean detox in the sense of a juice cleanse or starving yourself. I’m using the word detox purely to mean the act removing the toxin. Not the widely held beliefs about the methods of detox.

The idea of no more in, drain the stored amount out is pretty simple and straight forward. I’ll go into more details on how specifically in a moment.

First I want to address how we got here in the first place.

Are you ready to overcome Vitamin A Toxicity and get your child back to full health? I've got all of the details of the Vitamin A Detox Diet to get your started.

Why Are Children so Loaded with Vitamin A?

If you’re like me you’ve been trying hard to nourish your kids and make sure they are eating lots of fruits, veggies and whole foods. Maybe you add extra egg yolks to smoothies or some desiccated liver to your meatballs. Your kids take cod liver oil weekly, drink raw milk or organic whole milk, eat sweet potatoes, carrots, avocados, peppers, beets, spinach and kale. An assortment of healthy food.

How about a multi-vitamin added in for good measure? Just to “fill in the gaps.” Some whole food Vitamin C too?

Well, maybe not. Each of those things contains Vitamin A in the form of retinol, beta carotene or other carotenoids. And they add up. Quickly.

Humans did not eat this way thousands or even hundreds of years ago. Nobody ate the rainbow 1,000 years ago (I think we’ve forgotten how healthy white fruits and veggies are!). It just was not an option. There were no supermarkets with produce from around the world shipped in daily. People ate what was available.

Or maybe you’ve raised your kids on a typical diet these days of processed foods and pasteurized milk. They are all fortified with Vitamin A. Did your child ever drink formula? Fortified. In this case the government is dictating that your child needs large doses of Vitamin A on a daily basis.

How our Food and Diet Have Changed

I’m going to get technical just for a second here to explain some things on a deeper level.

Our bodies have a variety of receptors (molecule that responds to/”receives” specific substances like neurotransmitters, antigens and hormones). These substances are called ligands. Scientists have labeled one of the receptors RXR (Retinoid X Receptor). It is a poor name since this receptor can, and should, accept more than just retinoic acid.

RXR can also accept DHA (docosahexanoic acid) and phytanic acid, two types of fatty acids (there are others it accepts as well). These are actually the intended ligands for the RXR. Think of them as keys that unlock the RXR. And when they are present, they block the RXR from accepting Vitamin A.

DHA and phytanic acid should come from our food, specifically from ruminant animals. Ruminants eat grass, break down chlorophyll into DHA and phytanic acid. Then we consume them in beef fat and dairy fat. Both DHA and phytanic acid speed up the enzyme that breaks down Vitamin A in addition to blocking it from the RXR.

But this process has been interrupted. What are animals fed these days? Grains. No chlorophyll. On top of that the grains are usually covered in glyphosate. So there is much less DHA and phytanic acid to breakdown Vitamin A. And there is glyphosate that prevents the breakdown of Vitamin A (read all about the glyphosate Vitamin A connection here). A double whammy.

The popularity of vegetarian and vegan diets has also been a factor. We need red meat and animal fats from grassfed animals to get sufficient protein (to make retinol binding protein), DHA and phytanic acid. But those are missing on these restricted diets. Then add Vitamin A supplements on top of that “to prevent deficiencies.” It’s a recipe for disaster. If you know anyone that has gone on a vegan or vegetarian diet and felt great for a bit and then all of a sudden started to feel awful…this is why. They may actually be inducing an autoimmune disease!

As you can see our food supply and recommended diet has contributed greatly to this imbalance of Vitamin A. Plus the abundance of glyphosate is preventing us from detoxing Vitamin A.

How My Children Became Toxic

I’m right there with you when it comes to having children with Vitamin A Toxicity. 

When my son was two he started itching his legs like crazy until they would bleed. Eczema. I did not know it then, but eczema is actually classified as an autoimmune condition. We had him tested for allergies. Oh boy. A laundry list of foods, including dairy and nuts. Time for big diet changes.

So over the years I got creative and made everything dairy free (or tomato free when avoiding nightshades) using pumpkin or squash as a replacement. He also couldn’t have potatoes. So he always got carrots instead.

When he was five (after multiple rounds of testing and we’d had to carry an epi-pen for a year due to a severe nut allergy) he had more allergy testing. The new allergist took one look at him and noted that he had orange feet!! Carotenemia…an overload of beta carotene…Vitamin A Toxicity. I’m sure he was overloaded before that (why he had the eczema in the first place). But this took it to a whole new level.

We’ve struggled for years with him having stomach aches, up and down eating, skin issues, minor fevers, mood/behavior issues. Now we know why!

Vitamin A Toxicity in Pregnancy

When I was pregnant with my third I was being so “good” eating every nutrient dense food possible…with liver added. And a multi on top. I’m sure I was getting extremely high amounts of Vitamin A. And it’s passed to baby both in utero and in breastmilk. God designed babies to detox the Vitamin A from mom since baby’s liver is healthier. Great design. But not so nice for baby in this world we now live in.

So my daughter had a tongue tie, feeding issues and extreme vaccine reactions as an infant. She basically stopped eating. And of course I tried to get her back to health feeding her squash and liver smoothies!! She is now 4 1/2 and still struggles. She has complained of bone pain since she was old enough to verbalize how she felt. She has frequent stomach aches and a low appetite. Again, now we know why!

Thank goodness after a short time on the VAD diet and using our simple magnesium lotion her leg pain is gone, and she eats so well!

Of course I did not know anything about Vitamin A Toxicity back then. So when I became pregnant with baby #4 I ate the same way. So much nourishing food…or so I thought. Salads piled high with a rainbow of vegetables, avocado, fried eggs and desiccated liver. Washed down with a big glass of raw milk.

Now I’m dealing with the consequences again. Or should I say my son is. Feeding troubles from birth. Food reactions. Flat spot on his head. Weak bones. Horrible teething pain. Body tension and tongue restriction. All because I tried to follow current health advice.

Are We All Overloaded with Vitamin A?

But it didn’t even start there. Like most people I’ve been overloaded with Vitamin A my whole life. My parents probably were too. Maybe my grandparents were too! I was born in 1980. Processed food was what everyone ate. And all processed food, infant formula, and pasteurized milk are fortified with Vitamin A.

Then glyphosate was added to everything, making it much harder for our bodies to detox Vitamin A.

So it didn’t matter which extreme I was in – I was filling up on a toxin. And then passed that on to my children. Even my oldest. She was born before I had ever heard the term Real Food. But she still got the Vitamin A overload from me, then compounded with vaccines. And it impacted her neurologically.

All this to say, many people are overdosing on Vitamin A whether they realize it or not. Plus nobody is able to detox in our toxic world. That is a big problem. And it needs to stop.

How Do You Stop Vitamin A From Coming In?

  1. The easiest way to start the process is by eliminating all supplements containing Vitamin A or D and foods fortified with Vitamin A or D from your child’s diet. Immediately. They can be sneaky. Alternative milks and yogurts, flours, cereals, crackers. Not sure why our government thinks we are all Vitamin A deficient and we need it added to every food.
  2. The next step is removing Vitamin A foods from your child’s diet. Well, mostly. Unless you go to extremes like eating only beef and rice for the next six months you will be getting some Vitamin A. But the goal is to make that as minimal as possible. The less comes in, the faster it gets out. I will talk more about particular foods later.
  3. Then you have to look at what you put on your child’s body. Soap, shampoo, lotion. Even essential oils. If it comes from brightly colored plants (even green herbs) it has carotenoids and your skin will absorb it.
  4. Another critical aspect of your child’s food is to make sure it is organic. Glyphosate amplifies the effects of Vitamin A in the body. Try to avoid it as much as you can. This is particularly important when it comes to grains. Washing your produce well is also helpful.
  5. Finally I highly recommend doing HTMA (hair tissue mineral analysis) with a skilled practicioner to find out what supplements your child truly does need short term to get in balance and to help the detox process.

Vitamin A Detox Diet

So what exactly does the Vitamin A Detox Diet look like? And how do you get started?

That’s where my new book comes in! I have created a guide for parents to walk them through the process of detoxing their children.

The diet does not eliminate any major food groups. You can still eat meat, veggies (all these white ones are awesome!), fruits, grains, seeds, nuts, beans and fats. So in that sense it is quite easy. You definitely won’t go hungry!

But it does eliminate a lot of foods you are probably used to eating. Like most red, orange, yellow and green veggies, pork, fish (due to contamination), dairy, egg yolks, olive oil, lard and unrefined coconut oil. In that sense it’s a big change from the traditional food diet we are used to. It’s hard to make that mental shift. And it can be hard in social settings.

My book has a long list of recipes and sample menus to help get you going. And it has the approved food list.

One critical aspect of the VAD Diet is protein. Your child must get adequate protein. Remember that Retinol Binding Protein we discussed in an earlier post? It is the only way to safely transport Vitamin A out of the liver. And it is a protein…so you need protein to make it. There are many sources of protein, but meat from ruminant animals is an essential one of the VAD Diet (read why here).

Getting Started on the Vitamin A Detox Diet

If you want to jump in now, a general rule is that if it’s colored it’s out and if it’s white it’s OK. This does not apply to all fruits as many get their color from substances other than beta carotene. But some do, like peaches and nectarines. Most grains are OK and most meat is OK (except pork). There are also some foods that don’t contain Vitamin A but do impact the body’s use of Vitamin A, like certain nuts and fats. So it is important to get the full diet.

The Vitamin A Detox Diet is generally a very short process for kids. I’d say a few weeks to a month or two is all that is needed.

Kid-Friendly Vitamin A Detox Diet Foods

I’ll keep sharing some new Vitamin A Detox Diet recipes.

My four-year old has been the easiest to feed on the VAD Diet. She asks for my food all the time.

Some of our favorites right now are:

  • roasted parsnips
  • rutabaga fries
  • crinkle cut homemade french fries (yes, you can eat white potatoes!)
  • peeled cucumbers or rice crackers dipped in homemade hummus
  • rice and beans
  • baked or roasted chicken dipped in honey
  • roasted cauliflower
  • roasted green cabbage
  • gluten-free banana bread topped with sunbutter or butter
  • fresh fruit (blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, grapes, bananas, pears, apples, cherries, white peaches)
  • grassfed beef meatballs

Those are just a few ideas. I’ve got a lot more in my book.

Are you ready to help your child get back to full health? Are you ready for the Vitamin A Detox Diet? Got any questions for me?

Curious if the diet works? Check out my 6 month update here:

6 month Vitamin A Detox Diet update

Or my 9 month update here:

9 month Vitamin A Detox Diet update

And don’t forget to follow me on Facebook where I’m continually sharing the latest info and our progress.

Gluten Free Strawberry Rhubarb Upside Down Cake

The perfect early summer treat – combine sweet strawberries and tart rhubarb in this easy gluten-free strawberry rhubarb upside down cake!

Do you enjoy rhubarb?

It seems to be one of those foods that you either love or hate. I had never tasted it until I was an adult (i.e. my family was in the “I hate rhubarb” camp).

I guess I’m the oddball of the family because I love it!

What to do with Rhubarb

I’ve made quite a few unique rhubarb dishes in the past. Some of my favorites are:

Of course rhubarb tastes best when there is plenty of sugar added since it is so tart. So it is typically used in dessert.

Is Rhubarb Hard to Grow?

Believe it or not rhubarb is quite easy to grow. And you really only need a couple plants to get enough for a few spring treats.

We have a few rhubarb plants in our flower garden. They might actually produce enough for us to use if our chickens would stop eating them!The perfect early summer treat - combine sweet strawberries and tart rhubarb in this easy gluten-free strawberry rhubarb upside down cake!

How to Eat Rhubarb

Since it is so tart I think rhubarb is best paired with another fruit. Our first choice is strawberries. And since they are in season at the same time it just makes sense!

Even if you don’t have a lot of rhubarb you can fill in with other fruits. You’ll still get the rhubarb flavor you’re looking for.

Gluten-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Upside Down Cake

This simple cake is super moist and has plenty of sweetness. It is a perfect early summery treat, especially paired with some homemade vanilla ice cream.

The cake recipe is a great base for desserts all summer long. You can replace the strawberries and rhubarb with a variety of fruits (blueberries, peaches, plums, etc.).

It also works well for those with food allergies. It is naturally gluten and nut free. You can make it dairy free too.

Strawberry rhubarb upside down cake is a delicious dessert that you can make all summer long with whatever fruit is in season.

What is your favorite dessert fruit combination? If you’re not sure what to do with your rhubarb give this cake a try. It’ll be a big hit.

 

Gluten-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Upside Down Cake

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Servings 12
Author Mary | Just Take A Bite

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup butter or coconut oil
  • 1 cup organic brown cane sugar  packed
  • 2 cups fresh strawberries sliced
  • 2 cups fresh rhubarb chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups white rice flour
  • 1/4 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/4 cup tapioca flour
  • 1/4 cup amaranth flour
  • 1 1/2 cups organic cane sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter room temp (can be replaced with coconut oil
  • 1 1/4 cups milk or coconut milk, rice milk or almond milk
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 3 eggs separated
  • 1/2 tsp. cream of tartar

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 350°F.

  2. In a 9x13-inch pan melt the butter in the oven.

  3. Sprinkle the brown sugar evenly over the butter.

  4. Arrange the strawberries and rhubarb on the brown sugar. Press down gently.

  5. Beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar until stiff peaks form.

  6. Beat the egg yolks for two minutes.

  7. Add the remaining ingredients to the egg yolks. Beat for two minutes.

  8. Fold in the egg whites.

  9. Pour the batter over the strawberries and rhubarb.

  10. Bake for 50-60 minutes.

  11. Immediately run knife around sides of pan to loosen cake. Place heatproof serving plate upside down on pan (I used a small baking sheet); turn plate and pan over.

  12. Leave pan over cake 5 minutes so the brown sugar topping can drizzle over cake.

  13. Cool 30 minutes. Serve warm or cool with whipped cream or ice cream.

  14. Store covered in refrigerator.

Chips and dip make a great side dish for any party or picnic. Make it real food style with this easy homemade chip dip. Just ONE ingredient plus seasoning.

Easy Homemade Chip Dip

Chips and dip make a great side dish for any party or picnic. Make it real food style with this easy homemade chip dip. Just ONE ingredient plus seasoning.Chips and dip make a great side dish for any party or picnic. Make it real food style with this easy homemade chip dip. Just ONE ingredient plus seasoning.

One of the easiest side dishes any time of year is chips with dip. I know, you may be thinking that doesn’t sound very healthy. But it can be!

Buy your favorite kind of chip (we like the potato chips made with avocado oil or olive oil) or make a batch of homemade chips. Better yet swap the chips for some homemade teff crackers or gluten-free Wheat Thin® style crackers. You still get the crunch without eating chips. Then all you have to do is take one minute to mix up a quick dip.

What is in Homemade Chip Dip?

This chip dip reminds me of my favorite childhood dip – french onion. What’s great about this homemade version is what it’s missing…namely MSG (read about the dangers of MSG here) or anything artificial. Just a few simple ingredients.

This is also not a dip full of spice. We keep it simple for the oral sensory issues in our family. But that doesn’t mean it’s low on flavor. This simple chip dip tastes great and packs a punch of flavor.Chips and dip make a great side dish for any party or picnic. Make it real food style with this easy homemade chip dip. Just ONE ingredient plus seasoning.

What Can you Dip in Chip Dip Besides Chips?

If you don’t eat chips, this dip works very well for fresh vegetables. Our favorite is cucumbers. We even enjoy it on a burger whether it’s with a bun or simply as a dip when going bun-less. That’s what my kids do most of the time since gluten-free buns are expensive. Plus it’s just easy for kids to dip!

Homemade chip dip is very versatile.

Easy Dip for Kids

Chip dip works well for packing school lunches. A tasty dip is a great way to get kids to eat fresh vegetables. Serve a combination of chips or crackers and veggies. Even if you have reluctant veggie eaters you might be surprised that they eat it all when served together.

Making chip dip is also a great activity for kids. Even the little ones. You really can’t mess it up (the recipe is very forgiving…and you can always add extra sour cream if they go a little overboard with seasoning).

My four-year-old LOVES to help in the kitchen. I like to put her on dip duty. It keeps her hands busy, and she feels so proud that she is helping.Chips and dip make a great side dish for any party or picnic. Make it real food style with this easy homemade chip dip. Just ONE ingredient plus seasoning.


All of my kids know their way around the kitchen thanks to the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse. We’ve been doing it since 2016! Check it out HERE if you’re interested in getting your kids cooking.


Is Chip Dip Dairy-Free?

This version of chip dip is made with dairy. While my kids are mostly dairy-free, they do tolerate butter and a small amount of cream. So we still use a little sour cream.

But if you can’t have any dairy you could make this with coconut sour cream or almond milk sour cream. Both sound delicious!

The next time you are in the mood for chips and dip try this simple homemade version of chip dip. It takes less than one minute to make and will be a family favorite.Chips and dip make a great side dish for any party or picnic. Make it real food style with this easy homemade chip dip. Just ONE ingredient plus seasoning.

Easy Homemade Chip Dip

A simple chip dip made with real ingredients that only takes a minute to prepare.

Prep Time 1 minute
Servings 8
Author Mary | Just Take A Bite

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup organic sour cream
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. organic garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. organic onion powder
  • 1 tsp. organic dried dill weed (optional - not allowed on VAD Diet)

Instructions

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a glass jar.

  2. Mix until well combined. Adjust seasoning to taste.

  3. Serve with chips, crackers or vegetables.

  4. Store, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Is Gluten Really the Problem? How Glyphosate Impacts Vitamin A Toxicity

VAD Diet update

I have good news for my gluten free readers…you probably are not actually gluten intolerant! Even if you have celiac disease there is hope. Is gluten really the problem? Nope! Glyphosate impacts Vitamin A Toxicity significantly, causing the gluten-related problems.

I have good news for my gluten free readers...you probably are not actually gluten intolerant! Even if you have Celiac Disease there is hope. Is gluten really the problem? Nope! Glyphosate impacts Vitamin A Toxicity significantly, causing the gluten-related problems.

What if I told you gluten was not a problem…for anyone? Would you think I’m crazy? Probably.

Gluten is somewhat of an evil word these days. It gets blamed for just about every health problem and disease.

There are lots of scientific studies that link gluten to specific conditions and to the health of the gut. Some say that all grains are evil and that it’s more than just the gluten.

I don’t believe them.

I know. A bold statement. Remember, it’s coming from someone that has been on a gluten free diet for six years. All of my kids are gluten free as well. I even wrote a whole post about why we are eating gluten-free. So I’ve been on the gluten free bandwagon for a long time. And I’m not jumping off just yet.

But that could change. I’m hoping to get back to making traditional sourdough bread (with gluten-containing grains) soon. For my whole family.

Turns out the scientists could be looking at the wrong details.

Whether mistakenly or on purpose I’m not sure.

When they study the impact of gluten on the gut and autoimmune disease they see a correlation. And for good reason. But it’s not the gluten itself.

So what is the problem?

Glyphosate. And Vitamin A.The Vitamin A Detox Diet for Kids!

What is Glyphosate?

According to the EPA: “Glyphosate is a widely used herbicide that controls broadleaf weeds and grasses.”

It has been used as a pesticide since the 1970’s in products such as Roundup®. It is sprayed on many crops such as fruits, vegetables and almost all non-organic grains.

Although the EPA claims that it “has a low toxicity for humans,” recent events have proven otherwise. In August, 2018 a school groundskeeper was awarded $289 million in a court case against Monsanto (the maker of Roundup®) because the herbicide caused him terminal cancer. [source]

He’s not the only one. There are actually thousands of people suing Monsanto, claiming the herbicide gave them cancer.

In March of 2015 the WHO declared glyphosate as “probably carcinogenic to humans.” [source] The EWG agreed with this claim.

Glyphosate is classified as likely carcinogenic (and many would argue that it most certainly is). And yet it is sprayed on a large portion of the world’s food supply. Anybody else see a problem with that?I have good news for my gluten free readers...you probably are not actually gluten intolerant! Even if you have Celiac Disease there is hope. Is gluten really the problem? Nope! Glyphosate impacts Vitamin A Toxicity significantly, causing the gluten-related problems.

How Glyphosate and Gluten are Related

A lot of commercially grown wheat is currently sprayed with glyphosate just before harvest. The glyphosate does not help in growing the wheat. It simply speeds the drying process before harvest, desiccation. A toxin is sprayed on your food to get it to the supermarket a few days sooner. Sounds like a good idea, right?

Glyphosate is also widely used on oats. Although oats are gluten free, many people with some type of gluten intolerance have trouble with oats. Many have speculated cross-contamination from wheat since they are often grown in nearby fields. But it could actually be the glyphosate.

I want to briefly add in here that the use of glyphosate generally implies a food is genetically modified (learn more about GMOs here). The modification is made so the plant can tolerate the glyphosate. So the two go hand-in-hand. They are NOT the same thing. But they often go together. I am not a supporter of genetically modified crops either. I don’t think God intended for us to mix DNA between plants and even between species.

Glyphosate and Celiac

Here is an entire interview with Dr. Stephanie Seneff about the relationship between glyphosate and celiac disease. And here is some great information from the interview:

The use of glyphosate on wheat crops has risen in tandem with the rise in Celiac disease. In fact, it correlates to a greater degree than glyphosate usage on corn and soy. According to Dr. Seneff, desiccating non-organic wheat crops with glyphosate just before harvest came in vogue about 15 years ago. Interestingly enough, when you expose wheat to a toxic chemical like glyphosate, it actually releases more seeds. “It ‘goes to seed’ as it dies,” Dr. Seneff explains. “At its last gasp, it releases the seed.”This results in slightly greater yield, and the glyphosate also kills rye grass, a major weed problem for wheat growers that is resistant to many other herbicides. What they’re not taking into consideration is the fact that rye grass helps rebalance the soil, and from that perspective is a beneficial plant.So, most of the non-organic wheat supply is now contaminated with glyphosate. A large percentage of processed foods are made from wheat, and this helps explain the explosion of Celiac Disease and other gut dysfunction.What happens is that the villi in your gut get destroyed by the glyphosate, which reduces your ability to absorb vitamins and minerals. Also, wheat contains gliadin, which is difficult to break down. Normally, a reaction takes place that builds connections between different proteins in the wheat.But glyphosate gets right in the middle of that process too, resulting in wheat that is highly indigestible. Dr. Seneff and her co-researcher Dr. Anthony Samsel believe the glyphosate may attach to the gliadin as a consequence of a chemical reaction. The end result is that your body develops an immune reaction.

According to this study, “Fish exposed to glyphosate develop digestive problems that are reminiscent of celiac disease. Celiac disease is associated with imbalances in gut bacteria that can be fully explained by the known effects of glyphosate on gut bacteria. Characteristics of celiac disease point to impairment in many cytochrome P450 enzymes, which are involved with detoxifying environmental toxins, activating vitamin D3, catabolizing vitamin A, and maintaining bile acid production and sulfate supplies to the gut. Glyphosate is known to inhibit cytochrome P450 enzymes. Deficiencies in iron, cobalt, molybdenum, copper and other rare metals associated with celiac disease can be attributed to glyphosate’s strong ability to chelate these elements. Deficiencies in tryptophan, tyrosine, methionine and selenomethionine associated with celiac disease match glyphosate’s known depletion of these amino acids.”

How Glyphosate Impacts Vitamin A Toxicity

So what does this have to do with hypervitaminosis A? I want you to really listen here. Because this is one of the biggest factors in your health problems and your ability to detox Vitamin A.

Glyphosate slows/stops the natural breakdown of Poison/”Vitamin A.

Let’s put the puzzle pieces together here. Glyphosate is on wheat. Glyphosate stops your body from detoxing Vitamin A. Eating wheat causes worse Vitamin A toxicity and then prevents your body from getting rid of Vitamin A.

So eating wheat is actually giving you symptoms of Vitamin A Toxicity. What appears to be a reaction to gluten is actually poisoning from Vitamin A.

The fun doesn’t stop there. “Glyphosate chelates…minerals. It forms a cage around them, such that the bacteria can’t get at them even, so the gut bacteria become deficient, and then they die because they can’t get these critical nutrients. Because glyphosate is caged.” [source]

Glyphosate also impacts methylation. This topic has been popular in the natural health world in the last few years. Knowing if you are an over or under methylator can tell you a lot about your health. It also closely related to genetic expression. But your health problems are not the fault of your genes. Glyphosate actually can increase and decrease methylation in different areas of the body in different people.

Some say glyphosate is the main culprit in our autism epidemic. Since glyphosate is so prevalent in our food and water supply and it is even in vaccines, this is very plausible. Which would mean that detoxing from glyphosate could reverse autism. This could also be why a gluten free diet seems to help many kids both on the spectrum and with other neurological disorders like ADD/AHDH. You can read more about the glyphosate-autism connection here.

Sadly glyphosate and it’s relation to Vitamin A toxicity is even linked to birth defects. I’ll dig deeper into this issue in a future post.

I have good news for my gluten free readers...you probably are not actually gluten intolerant! Even if you have Celiac Disease there is hope. Is gluten really the problem? Nope! Glyphosate impacts Vitamin A Toxicity significantly, causing the gluten-related problems.

Is There A Solution?

It’s pretty obvious that the prevalence of glyphosate in our food supply and our environment is a problem. So is there a solution? Yes and no.

One way to try to avoid glyphosate is by buying organic wheat (and all other grains). Unfortunately glyphosate has been so widely used that it is now unavoidable. The wind carries it from the wheat fields to other fields (even organic ones). Glyphosate is in our water supply. Even rain water now tests positive for glyphosate. So it rains glyphosate on organic crops. You really can’t get completely away from it.

As a probable carcinogen, even small amounts in your food can have a big impact on your health. And we all get at least small amounts.

Some people that are gluten intolerant switch to einkorn, an ancient variety of wheat. While this may help remove the glyphosate factor, it is not a great solution. Einkorn actually is higher in Vitamin A than other varieties of wheat. Most grains do not have any Vitamin A. So if you are already toxic, einkorn will just compound the problem. If you are not dealing with hypervitaminosis A, then einkorn may be a suitable solution.

Almost everyone dealing with Vitamin A toxicity and gluten problems should take Vitamin C. This is protective against retinoic acid and helps the liver detox. It also decreases glyphosate toxicity. 

Activated charcoal help detox the body by absorbing toxins.

Only drink filtered water. Especially if you have well water. If it is not filtered it will be full of glyphosate. You can have your water tested to check the levels. A whole house water filter is ideal. But at the very least filter all drinking water. Some good options are Berkey water systems (find them here) and reverse osmosis.

Finally, eating all organic food will go a long way in limiting your exposure to glyphosate. This is especially true for grains. And this may be the real reason that many people feel better on a grain free diet. It’s not the grains, it’s the glyphosate!

Do Other Substances Impact Vitamin A Detox?

Glyphosate is not the only culprit hindering your body’s ability to handle Vitamin A. Many commonly used drugs have a similar impact.

Birth control pills actually raise Vitamin A levels in the body.

I know this holds true for me (and many other women I’ve talked to) that some of my biggest health problems started when I took birth control. There have been a lot of factors in my health journey over the years (lots of antibiotics as a child, processed food, vaccines, etc.). But if I could go back and just change one thing I would tell myself not to take birth control. It led to infertility, weight gain, OCD, anxiety to the point of panic attacks, thyroid problems…the list goes on. And guess what? Those are all complications from Vitamin A Toxicity. 

Even everyday pain medications like Tylenol and Ibuprofen can have a significant impact on your health if you are dealing with hypervitaminosis A.  Pain medications can damage the liver. And if Vitamin A Toxicity is rooted in the liver, then any extra damage will just compound the problem.

I have witnessed the pain medication reaction first-hand in my two youngest children. Both when my 4 year old was an infant and just last week with my 8 month old – the use of Ibuprofen had a huge impact. I am not a fan of OTC medications. I use them only when absolutely necessary. My son’s fever got VERY high one night. So I gave him Ibuprofen. For the next few days his nervous system was on high alert. He couldn’t eat well or sleep well. He wouldn’t let me set him down. He got spots on his belly. Every time he tried to nurse his whole body would jerk, like he was having spasms. Even just my hand on his spine would cause him to jerk.

It reminded me of his big sister as a child. Then I remembered it happened to her after her tongue tie revision…and giving her pain medication. Not surprisingly they are my two most Vitamin A toxic kids. So every little thing that compounds the problem is obvious.

The Glyphosate-Gluten-Vitamin A Conclusion

I know that was a lot to take in. Vitamin A Toxicity is not a stand-alone issue. It is impacted by many other factors in our modern society – how we eat, live and medicate. Glyphosate interferes with the detoxification of Vitamin A, leading to gluten intolerance symptoms (Vitamin A Toxicity). Some say glyphosate is actually THE foundational problem. Vitamin A toxicity then piggybacks on that. This is a very complex issue. But one that NEEDS to be addressed.

Again I feel like I am just barely scratching the surface of a monumental issue. But that is my intent. I want to create awareness. Then your job is to keep digging. I have some great links in the post. I strongly encourage you to read each one.

I also want to encourage you to start taking steps TODAY to protect you and your family (see the section on solutions). We speak with our dollars. Do not support GMO products that use Glyphosate. Buy organic and local whenever possible. Or grow your own! Talk to your government officials. Tell your friends.

My next step is to talk to the farmers that plant wheat, corn, soybeans and oats right next to our yard! We are already dealing with Vitamin A Toxicity. I don’t want an abundance of glyphosate in our water supply to compound the issue.

Once we are through the Vitamin A detox I plan to add traditional sourdough back into our diets (using organic wheat of course!). My kids and I are very excited!

Do your kids struggle with gluten intolerance or celiac disease? How will you try to eliminate exposure to glyphosate and Vitamin A?

Want to read more? Here are some other posts linking glyphosate to gluten intolerance:

Your Gluten Problem May Actually be a Glyphosate Problem

Glyphosate and Gluten Sensitivity Series

Is Roundup the Cause of ‘Gluten Intolerance’?.

Does the chemical glyphosate (Roundup) mimic gluten sensitivity?

You are not gluten intolerant, you are glyphosate intolerant

Pumpkin Spice Graham Crackers {gluten free, dairy free, egg free, nut free}

Pumpkin spice graham crackers are easy to make, allergen friendly and capture the warm flavors of pumpkin pie. They make a perfect after school snack or lunch box addition.Pumpkin spice graham crackers are easy to make, allergen friendly and capture the warm flavors of pumpkin pie. They make a perfect after school snack or lunch box addition. #glutenfreefood #pumpkinspice

For me there is no better snack than a graham cracker. Crunchy. Slightly sweet. Perfection.

I got hooked on them in college and have eaten more than my share since. Of course they came out of box.

No more boxes here. Now when I’m in the mood for graham crackers I make them!

I have created quite a few versions of graham crackers:

Pumpkin spice graham crackers are easy to make, allergen friendly and capture the warm flavors of pumpkin pie. They make a perfect after school snack or lunch box addition. #glutenfreefood #pumpkinspice

Graham Crackers with Fall Spice!

Today I’m sharing my fall version of graham crackers – pumpkin spice.

They are very easy to make and very allergen friendly. Pumpkin spice graham crackers are gluten, dairy, egg, nut, soy, corn and rice free. But nobody will ever know!

You get the mild sweetness and crunch of a graham cracker combined with pumpkin and spice. This is a fun holiday treat for kids and adults. It is like pumpkin pie in graham cracker form.

Let your kids trade in Halloween candy for pumpkin spice graham crackers or add them to your Thanksgiving baking list!
Buy Healthy Snacks to Go eBook Recipes Online

Graham Crackers for Breakfast, Lunch, Snack or Dessert

My kids go crazy for pumpkin spice graham crackers. Though we try not to go overboard, a whole batch is sometimes gone in a couple weeks.

They make the perfect after school snack with a big glass of raw milk. Somehow they make homework easier. But there are many other ways to enjoy them.

Pumpkin spice graham crackers are delicious broken and sprinkled over whole milk yogurt for breakfast. You can also spread nut butter in between two crackers for a nutritious snack or sandwich alternative.

Kids will love pumpkin spice graham crackers in their lunch. What a fun way to give them a treat that is full of good stuff.

Pumpkin spice graham crackers are easy to make, allergen friendly and capture the warm flavors of pumpkin pie. They make a perfect after school snack or lunch box addition. #glutenfreefood #pumpkinspiceThey can be used in desserts as well. Sprinkle crushed graham crackers on top of pudding or grind them to make the crust for a fall cheesecake.

No matter how you serve them, pumpkin spice graham crackers are sure to be a hit.

Kids in the Kitchen

The next time your kids are begging for a treat make a batch of pumpkin spice graham crackers. But be sure to let them help.

All you need is a bowl and a spoon. Kids can measure, poor, stir and then roll the dough. My kids always have fun making graham crackers. Especially since they have learned to cook using the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse! Learn more about how you can teach your kids to cook here.

You can make it even more fun by using cookie cutters to create different shaped crackers.

The dough is ready to go in the oven in less than fifteen minutes. The hard part is waiting for them to bake and cool.

Pumpkin spice graham crackers are easy to make, allergen friendly and capture the warm flavors of pumpkin pie. They make a perfect after school snack or lunch box addition.

Pumpkin Spice Graham Crackers Year Round.

One batch of pumpkin spice graham crackers makes around fifty crackers. Keep half in the cupboard and store the rest in the freezer for an easy snack when you don’t have time to bake.

If your kids are like mine you might need to make a double batch!

Not sure what to give your kids when they are asking for snacks? Pumpkin spice graham crackers are just the thing. Healthy fat, vegetables and gluten free grains will give them the energy they need to keep going.

Do you enjoy graham crackers? What is your favorite way to eat them?

Pumpkin spice graham crackers are easy to make, allergen friendly and capture the warm flavors of pumpkin pie. They make a perfect after school snack or lunch box addition.

Pumpkin Spice Graham Crackers {gluten free, dairy free, nut free, egg free}
Yields 50
A graham cracker with the taste of pumpkin pie.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup any combination of starchy gluten free flour (tapioca, white rice)
  2. 1 cup any combination of whole grain gluten free flour (sorghum, amaranth, brown rice, buckwheat)
  3. 1/2 cup organic cane sugar or coconut sugar
  4. 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  5. 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  6. 1 tsp. vanilla
  7. 1 tsp. cinnamon
  8. 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  9. 1/8 tsp. cloves
  10. 2 Tbsp. honey
  11. 2 Tbsp. molasses (can be replaced with honey or maple syrup)
  12. 6 Tbsp. butter, coconut oil, lard or tallow, melted
  13. 1/3 cup pureed pumpkin
Instructions
  1. Preheat an oven to 350*F.
  2. Cut three pieces of parchment paper the size of a baking sheet.
  3. In a large bowl combine the flour, sugar, salt, soda, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Stir.
  4. Add the honey, molasses, pumpkin and melted oil. Stir until well combined.
  5. Split the dough in half.
  6. Place one half on a piece of parchment paper. Top with a second sheet.
  7. Roll the dough between the paper until it is about 1/4" thin.
  8. Remove the top piece of paper. Using a pizza cutter or knife cut the dough into squares.
  9. Transfer the dough on the parchment paper to a baking sheet.
  10. Repeat this process for the second half of the dough.
  11. Bake graham crackers in the preheated oven for about 25 minutes.
  12. Turn off the oven. Leave the crackers in the oven for an extra 10 minutes.
  13. Remove the crackers from the oven. Allow to cool completely.
  14. The crackers will crisp as they cool.
  15. Store in an airtight container at room temperature or in the freezer for long term storage.
Notes
  1. The graham crackers freeze very well and are ready to eat as soon as you take them out of the freezer.
  2. You can replace the cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg with 1 1/2 tsp. of pumpkin pie spice.
Just Take A Bite https://justtakeabite.com/
This post is linked to From The Archives Friday and Savoring Saturdays.

Picky Eater Approved Grain-Free Meatloaf Sliders

Make meal time or snack time fun for kids with these picky eater approved grain-free meatloaf sliders.Make meal time or snack time fun for kids with these picky eater approved grain-free meatloaf sliders.

I’m a big fan of meatloaf. It’s so easy to make. And all of my kids will eat it. That’s pretty much the equivalent of a gold medal meal.

I usually cook mine in the crockpot (I like this style). I put it in before we leave for church on Sunday and it’s ready when we get home.

A New Way to Make Meatloaf

Recently I got to review the Paleo Cooking with your Air Fryer cookbook by Karen S. Lee (grab your copy here). When I saw her little meatloaf sliders I knew I had to try them! A family staple in a mini size for little hands? Perfect!

Since my kids have done the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse I actually let them help me make these fun meatloaf sliders. Everything goes in one bowl. My kind of prep work!

Make meal time or snack time fun for kids with these picky eater approved grain-free meatloaf sliders.

My kids are used to eating their burgers without a bun. So that’s what we did. But it would also be fun to make some mini buns or use a lettuce wrap. Or if your kids are like mine they love anything served on a stick. I like mine on a big salad! Top it with some avocado. YUM.

I love that these meatloaf sliders are free of grains/gluten and dairy. If you can’t have eggs I bet they would work fine without. We are nut free, so I swapped a little more coconut flour for the almond flour.

I served our meatloaf sliders with cauli-bites, also from Karen’s book. I skipped the buffalo seasoning since my kids are not big on spice. But I bet it would be delicious!

Do You Need an Air Fryer?

Now you may be thinking, “These look good…but I don’t have an air fryer.” Well, I don’t either! Though I may have to put one on my Christmas list now. All of the recipes can be adapted for the oven by using a wire rack on a baking sheet. Simple.

If you do have an air fryer I’d love to hear what you think of it!Make meal time or snack time fun for kids with these picky eater approved grain-free meatloaf sliders.

Even if you don’t have an air fryer I highly recommend Karen’s book. The pictures are gorgeous (my favorite thing about any cookbook). And the recipes all sound delicious. PLUS they are all paleo recipes and easy to adapt to your dietary needs.

I had to steal the cookbook back from my ten year old. She was drooling over every page.

Divided into eleven chapters, Paleo Cooking with your Air Fryer includes crispy and flavorful dishes for every meal and snack,  including desserts. Karen’s nutritious and delicious air fryer recipes will turn her family favorites into your family’s favorites, including Healthy Korean Chicken Wings, Filet Mignon with Herbs and Roasted Garlic, Not Your Gramma’s Fried Chicken, Fish Tostadas, Fancy Pants French Fries, Simple Chocolate Mud Cake and Pumpkin Coconut Crème Brûlée.

Dr. Karen S. Lee is a retired Doctor of Chiropractic and Acupuncture Fellow, who helped thousands of patients with emphasis on holistic therapy, ergonomics, nutrition therapy, and mind-body medicine. She is the founder of www.drkarenslee.com, a blog dedicated to holistic health, real food recipes, and lives in Westchester County, New York with her family.Make meal time or snack time fun for kids with these picky eater approved grain-free meatloaf sliders.

Grain Free Meatloaf Sliders

Karen has graciously allowed me to share the meatloaf slider recipe with my readers! It’s great for little hands. And it’s definitely picky eater approved! Especially if you let them help cook. Something about helping prepare the food makes it so much more appealing.

Enjoy this super fast, super delicious, super kid friendly recipe. We eat it for breakfast, lunch or dinner!Make meal time or snack time fun for kids with these picky eater approved grain-free meatloaf sliders.

Recipe reprinted with permission from Paleo Cooking With Your Air Fryer by Dr. Karen S. Lee, Page Street Publishing Co. 2018. Photo Credit: Donna Crous.

Grain Free Meatloaf Sliders

Grain and dairy free mini meatloaves.

Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 8
Author Karen S. Lee

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. grass-fed ground beef
  • 2 eggs large
  • 1/4 cup onion finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1/2 cup almond flour extra fine blanched
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. gluten free Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp. dried tarragon

Instructions

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine all of the ingredients and mix well.

  2. Make patties that are about 2 inches in diameter and about 1 inch thick. If you want to make thicker or thinner patties, make sure all of them are similar size, so they cook properly at the same time.

  3. Place the patties on a platter and refrigerate for 10 minutes for the flour to absorb the wet ingredients and the patties to become firm.

  4. Preheat the air fryer to 360*F or the oven to 400*F.

  5. Place as many patties as you can fit in the basket and close. Set the timer for 10 minutes. Check the patties halfway through. When the timer goes off, take them out, place on a serving platter and cover until all the patties are cooked.

  6. If using the oven, place patties on a wire rack on top of a baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, until cooked through.

Simple Baked Beet Fries

Every summer our garden is loaded with beets. My husband just did our THIRD planting! There are so many reasons to eat beets. But not everyone is a fan. Until now. You’ll have even your picky eaters going for seconds with these simple baked beet fries!

Beets. You either love them or hate them. Some (like me!) love their earthy sweet flavor. Then there are others that think they just taste like dirt.

I am happy to say that I’ve converted my whole family into beet eaters! Especially freshly roasted golden beets from our garden. They are so sweet!!

But I know not everyone is so fond of them.

It’s a shame because they are loaded with vitamins and minerals. Just look at that rich color! Plus they are powerhouse helpers for your liver, assisting in detox.

There must be a way to get beet haters to enjoy them (besides trying to hide a tiny bit in a smoothie), right?

Yes, there is!There are so many reasons to eat beets. But not everyone is a fan. Until now. You'll have even your picky eaters going for seconds with these simple baked beet fries!

Beet Fries.

My three year old will eat a mountain of beets. But my son, although willing, really only cares for a few pieces. Until I made them into fries.

All it takes is cutting beets into sticks and rolling them in flour. Bake for an hour and sprinkle generously with real salt. And presto. Beet fries.

Suddenly my son will fight over them!

You don’t even need ketchup for dipping. They are great as-is. Perfect for keeping the added sugar out of your diet.

I love that this is also a great alternative for anyone that can’t have potatoes due to allergies (like my sons) or a nightshade sensitivity. We also make a lot of carrot fries to avoid potatoes.There are so many reasons to eat beets. But not everyone is a fan. Until now. You'll have even your picky eaters going for seconds with these simple baked beet fries!

My kids will eat these warm or cold. They do tend to go for the golden ones first. Like I said, golden beets are so sweet. But they like both varieties. If you think you don’t like beets, try golden. You might change your mind.

Grab some beets from your local farmer’s market (or grow your own!) and make these picky eater approved beet fries. Easy to make and fun to eat. Plus they are so good for you! It’s a win all around.

Do your kids like beets? Would they eat them as beet fries?

There are so many reasons to eat beets. But not everyone is a fan. Until now. You'll have even your picky eaters going for seconds with these simple baked beet fries!

5 from 2 votes
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Simple Baked Beet Fries

A delicious way to serve beets to picky eaters.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 5

Ingredients

  • 3-6 medium to large beets
  • 1/2 cup rice flour, cassava flour or tapioca flour
  • 1 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil or avocado oil

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees F.

  2. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

  3. Peel and slice beets into 1/2" sticks.

  4. Combine flour and half of the salt.

  5. Lightly coat beet sticks with flour and line them up on the baking sheet.

  6. Drizzle the olive oil over the beets.

  7. Bake in heated oven for one hour.

  8. Sprinkle on remaining salt while fries are still hot.

 

Healthy Gluten Free Instant Porridge with MCT Oil

Looking for a simple, yet nourishing breakfast that you can get on the table quickly? This picky eater approved gluten free instant porridge with MCT oil will be a new family favorite. No cooking. No allergens. And best of all the kids can make it!Looking for a simple, yet nourishing breakfast that you can get on the table quickly? This picky eater approved gluten free instant porridge with MCT oil will be a new family favorite. No cooking. No allergens. And best of all the kids can make it!

I’m definitely a creature of habit. When it comes to breakfast I tend to serve the same things to my family every week (one less thing to think about when meal planning!). Monday is yogurt. Tuesday is a smoothie. Wednesday is eggs. And Thursday is usually oatmeal.

There’s just one problem. My oldest son is allergic to oats!

Easy Oat-Free Breakfast

So I always have to come up with an alternative for him. Sometimes I make a different hot cereal, like teff porridge. But I’ll be honest…I usually do not feel like cooking a second breakfast. Especially now with a new baby. I just don’t have time for that.

Looking for a simple, yet nourishing breakfast that you can get on the table quickly? This picky eater approved gluten free instant porridge with MCT oil will be a new family favorite. No cooking. No allergens. And best of all the kids can make it!One day I just started tossing some miscellaneous food in a bowl for him. His own instant porridge. And he loved it!

In fact, it looked so good my daughters were jealous that he got instant porridge when they had oatmeal. So now I make it for all of them! Or better yet, they can make it for themselves since they know how to cook. It’s that easy.


Want to teach your kids to cook? Check out the Kids Cook Real Food ecourse HERE! You can get a set of FREE kids make breakfast videos when you sign up by August 8!


Not to mention it’s very versatile. You can partially prep it the night before, 30 minutes before or just before breakfast. It can be gluten-free or grain-free and dairy-free.

Instant Porridge Packed with Nutrition

The key ingredient is chia seeds. They pack a nutritional punch with omega-3’s, vitamins, minerals, fiber, and protein.

There is another superstar ingredient that we add – MCT oil. If you’ve never tried it, you should. It comes from coconuts. Here are some of the benefits:

  • Increase Energy Levels
  • Improve Mental Clarity, Reduce Brain Fog
  • Improve Mood
  • Improve Gut Function and Digestion
  • Support a Healthy Metabolism
  • Aid In The Process of Reducing Stored Body Fat
  • Promote Healthy Brain Function
  • Keep Excess Inflammation in Check
  • Promote Healthy Heart Function
  • Helps Maintain Healthy Blood Sugar Levels
  • Variety of antimicrobial and anti-fungal effects

Anything that improves brain function and blood sugar regulation is wonderful for kids! Not to mention it boosts nutrition, which is a key factor in dealing with picky eaters. It’s great for Mom and Dad too!

Looking for a simple, yet nourishing breakfast that you can get on the table quickly? This picky eater approved gluten free instant porridge with MCT oil will be a new family favorite. No cooking. No allergens. And best of all the kids can make it!The best source for MCT oil is Perfect Supplements (I trust them for all of my favorite supplements like desiccated liver and collagen). It is 100% pure (read more about it here)!

Grab your MCT oil HERE. Use the code TAKE10 to get an extra 10% off!

If you’ve never used MCT oil, make sure you start with a small dose (about 1 tsp.) and work your way up to 1 – 2 Tbsp. It can upset your digestive system if you eat too much too quickly.

To your chia seeds and MCT oil add your favorite type of milk (we us raw milk, coconut milk, almond milk or rice milk), seeds, and fruit. Then my personal favorite topping of coconut chips (advanced warning…they are so addictive!).

Looking for a simple, yet nourishing breakfast that you can get on the table quickly? This picky eater approved gluten free instant porridge with MCT oil will be a new family favorite. No cooking. No allergens. And best of all the kids can make it!Healthy, Prep-ahead Breakfast

You can prepare and eat it immediately. Or you can let the chia seeds soak in the milk for a few minutes or even over night to thicken. Sometimes we add brown rice puffs or quick oats (depending on who’s eating it) to thicken it as well.

My three-year old has been measuring ingredients and slicing bananas since she was two. She loves to make instant porridge herself. Plus each child gets to choose their toppings when they make it. And they learn how to serve themselves proper portions.

If your mornings are really hectic mix the chia seeds and milk the night before. In the morning set out bowls of toppings for the family.

Instant porridge. Instant breakfast. Instant nutrition.

That is my kind of breakfast!Looking for a simple, yet nourishing breakfast that you can get on the table quickly? This picky eater approved gluten free instant porridge with MCT oil will be a new family favorite. No cooking. No allergens. And best of all the kids can make it!

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Healthy Gluten Free Instant Porridge with MCT Oil

A simple, no-cook breakfast porridge that is allergy friendly and loaded with nutrition.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 1
Author Mary | Just Take A Bite

Ingredients

  • 1 cup milk or yogurt of choice
  • 2 Tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 Tbsp. hemp seeds (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp. MCT oil (start with 1 tsp. if you've never used it before and work up to 1 Tbsp.)
  • 2 Tbsp. brown rice puffs or rolled oats (optional)
  • 1 banana sliced
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut chips
  • dried or fresh fruit of choice (optional)

Instructions

  1. Combine the milk/yogurt, chia seeds, hemp seeds, MCT oil and puffs/oats.

  2. Allow to sit for 5 - 10 minutes or overnight (in refrigerator).

  3. Add banana, coconut chips and fruit.

  4. Serve.

Recipe Notes

Any form of dairy works - coconut milk, almond milk, rice milk, etc.

This serves 1. Multiply for as many servings as you need.

What is your go-to quick and healthy breakfast?

Don’t forget to grab your MCT oil and all your other favorite Perfect Supplements products like desiccated liver and collagen HERE! Use the code TAKE10 to get an extra 10% off.