Going Gluten-Free Doesn’t Have to Be Stressful

A gluten-free diet is not just the latest diet fad. It’s actually a necessary way of eating for people with legitimate health concerns. 

Today I am sharing an article by the Institute for Integrative Nutrition about gluten-free tips, foods and recipes. The first thing people think when they hear about gluten-free foods is that they can’t enjoy their favorite meals, but that’s completely false. Check out the recipes below for pancakes and an apple and pear cobbler – yum!

I recommend a gluten-free diet to treat Celiac Disease and wheat allergies, of course, but it has also been proved to be effective against ADHD, digestion issues, weight issues, skin rashes, fatigue and many other chronic health concerns.

You can find gluten-free pasta, cereal, bread, waffles, pancakes, and cookies at most natural foods food stores, many supermarkets, and some local grocers.  But make sure to choose carefully.  There is such a thing as “junk food’ gluten free foods.  Just because it says “gluten-free’ doesn’t mean its automatically healthy.  It could cause weight gain and blood sugar spikes if the gluten is replaced with less healthy refined alternatives.

Gluten-free foods

  • Potatoes
  • Buckwheat
  • Oats (*must be labeled gluten-free to avoid cross-contamination)
  • Corn/ maize
  • Brown Rice
  • Quinoa
  • Amaranth
  • Teff
  • Millet
  • Beans
  • Nuts and nut butters
  • Eggs
  • Fresh fruit
  • Fresh vegetables
  • Herbs and spices
  • Meats and fish purchased without sauce or seasonings
  • Home-made soups (avoid bouillon cubes, barley malt, and all types of pasta)
  • Juice (all-natural, 100% fruit juice)

Foods to avoid

  • Wheat
  • Kamut
  • Spelt
  • Rye
  • Barley
  • Oats are generally avoided because they are almost always processed in mills that process grains containing gluten
  • Modified food starch
  • Barley enzymes (found in majority of breakfast cereals), soy sauce, and distilled vinegar (malt vinegar)

Tips for avoiding contamination

  • Clean out cutlery drawers; they are great crumb collectors
  • Replace old wooden spoons and cutting boards
  • Wash dish rags/sponges frequently
  • Use a new toaster for gluten-free foods only or buy toaster bags (do not use a toaster that’s already been used to toast regular bread)
  • Use squirt bottles for condiments like mayonnaise, mustard, jelly, etc. to avoid contamination
  • Mark containers with “GF” on the lid of gluten-free items.
  • Clean food prep areas
  • Dedicate shelves and cabinets in your kitchen and refrigerator to “gluten-free food only”                      


Substitute 1 cup of wheat flour with:

Grain (flour)


Barley (for wheat-sensitive only)

1-1/4 cups


1 cup

GF Oat

1-1/3 cups


3/4 cup


3/4 cup

Rye (for wheat-sensitive only)

1-1/3 cups


1 cup


How to Get Your Kids to Beg for Veggies Cookbook | LeannForst.comGluten-Free Flour Mix (All-Purpose)

(Makes 12 cups)

Gluten-Free Flour Mix (Light)

(Makes 12 cups)


In a mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients and then add the rest of the ingredients and blend well. Drop approximately 1/4 cup batter per pancake into an oiled, preheated griddle. Cook pancake on each side until golden brown and cooked through the center. Serve hot with maple syrup or fresh berries.

Apple and Pear Cobbler


Combine gluten-free flours and potato starch, sugar, cloves, cardamom, and salt. Add butter and cut in until mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Add sour cream and blend until dough begins to come together. Do not form ball.

Place the completed dough between two sheets of plastic wrap or parchment paper. Form a large ball of dough between the sheets, and then gently flatten into a square. Refrigerate while you prepare the filling.


  • 2 pounds crisp, fresh apples
  • 2 pounds Bartlett pears
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon cloves, ground
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 375°

Transfer fruit slices to a pie dish or a 9” baking dish. Combine lemon juice and vanilla in small bowl. Pour over apples and toss to coat. Combine 3/4 cup sugar, flour, and cloves in small bowl. Sprinkle over fruit and toss to coat. Rearrange fruit to make compact and wipe rim of dish clean. Place dough atop fruit and gently tuck edges under at 3-inch intervals. Sprinkle with remaining 2 teaspoons sugar. Sprinkle 1/4 cup sliced almonds over top. Bake for 35-40 minutes. The cobbler is done when the topping is golden brown and the fruit bubbles around the edge of the pan.

Looking for more recipe ideas? My cookbook, How to Get Your Kids to Beg for Veggies, can help you cook stress-free healthy foods you can feel good about serving your family. 

Also, check out my 3 Popular Recipe Programs:










Leann Forst, MBA, CHC — Family Health & Cancer Coach

Leann is a Board Certified Holistic Health Practitioner and Certified Essential Oils Coach, holding a Master’s degree from Drake University and a Bachelor of Science from Upper Iowa University.

Leann is accredited by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners. And she is an award winning author of 2 books How to Get Your Kids to Beg for Veggies and 100 Ways to Lose Weight”.

Born and raised as an Iowa farm girl, she moved to Texas in 1998 where she lives with her husband and 2 kids.

As a wife of a brain cancer survivor, Leann has a special interest in anti-cancer nutrition and detoxification. She works with individuals and groups, and speaks regularly at hospitals, schools and organizations to teach people how to attain optimal health by getting to the root cause of chronic and inflammatory conditions, while using healing modalities such as essential oils. Click here to get Leann’s free report, “37 Cancer Facts You Should Know…But Probably Don’t”. 

Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links.

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