Meet your Dietary Needs with a Gluten-Free Thanksgiving

When I was diagnosed as Celiac and forced to switch to a gluten free diet, I was certain that I would never eat anything that tasted good again.  I mean, I was positive of this.  Gluten seemed to be in everything.  All of the labels I read would have something in it that I could no longer eat.

When it came to my first Thanksgiving gluten free, I was upset about not having my favorite stuffing, or pie crust, or rolls.  And then it hit me… what about the turkey?  Gluten is injected into so many things that you would never think.  When I found out that Butterball, while now labeled as such, is gluten free, I was thrilled.  Not only could I roast their turkey for Thanksgiving, I could now buy their deli products with confidence.

I have since learned how to make stuffing by modifying the recipe from my family using gluten free bread.  I have learned to make gluten free pie crusts.  I have discovered new recipes, such as this great cornbread recipe that I adapted.  Make this a couple days ahead and you have the cornbread for a fabulous dressing. It can also be adapted easily to be dairy and egg free and thus accommodate many of the common food allergies.  If you are hosting new people for your holiday, ask them about their dietary restrictions and allergies.

Gluten Free Cornbread
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1 cup corn meal
1 cup all-purpose Gluten Free flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons brown sugar

2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 egg
1 cup milk (regular, rice, or unflavored soy)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease 9×9 pan, or cast iron skillet, with butter.

Mix corn meal, flour, salt, brown sugar and baking soda together. Add honey, egg, milk and melted butter. Stir until just mixed. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

In the end, being forced to go gluten free has made me a better cook. It has made me examine the food choices I make and what I serve to my family.  It has made me conscious of nutrition in a way that I had not been before.  I strive to feed my family “real” foods that are not overly processed and I am happy to say that Butterball is one of those foods.


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