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I am so flattered to have been nominated to be in the 'Top 25 Mom Allergy Blog' category this year! Its all based upon votes! You can vote 1 time a day until October 17th! Please take a minute to click the link/graphic below and vote for “Conscious Eatery.”

Thanks so much for your support!  I couldn't do it without you!

Paleo Lettuce Wraps

The typical lettuce wrap has too much sugar, in my opinion.  This recipe contains lots of flavor and almost no allergens (except soy, but we can eat that).

It's pretty amazing how much flavor comes from so few ingredients.  Seriously, this is it!:

Well...except for the lettuce, of course.:

This recipe takes all of 15-20 minutes to prepare.  How great is that?  All you do is brown the beef and then stir in the chopped water chestnuts, garlic, and ginger:

The next step is optional, but only if you don't like cilantro.  I know some people have a strong aversion to it, but I could eat it by the handful.  Finely chop up a bunch and stir it into the meat mixture.:

The last step is to stir in the seasonings.  I use gluten-free soy sauce and some super-spicy chili-garlic paste. Look at that color and texture - yum!  I can almost smell it....

Just scoop the mixture into lettuce leaves and top with some tasty Sriracha sauce, you know, the big bottle with the rooster on the front.  Speaking of Sriracha, did you know they make lollipops out of it?  Check it out here. Weird, but strangely intriguing...

Ok, back to the lettuce wraps. The final product is so spicy and flavorful - like a party in your mouth!


Paleo Lettuce Wraps
(serves 4)


Lettuce leaves (Boston lettuce or Napa Cabbage works well)
1lb ground meat (try to use 85% for the best flavor)
1-5 cloves garlic, minced 
1 can water chestnuts, finely chopped
1 T fresh ginger, finely minced 
1 T gluten-free soy sauce
Handful of cilantro, chopped.   You could also use Thai basil or mint.
Chili Garlic Paste (you can find it in the International aisle)
Sriracha sauce


  1. Brown meat in a large fry pan on medium high.  Add garlic and ginger and cook for another minute being careful not to burn garlic.
  2. Stir in the chopped water chestnuts until heated through.
  3. Add soy sauce and chili paste
  4. Add any flavorful extras that you like.  I use a large handful of cilantro.  Vegetables like zucchini and mushrooms are great too.
  5. Put meat mixture into a serving bowl and serve in lettuce cups. Top with Sriracha sauce, if desired.
  6. Enjoy!

Allergy-free Toddler Muffins

When I came across this recipe on Pinterest, I knew right away I had to come up with an allergy-free version (no dairy, eggs, or wheat).  Well, I'm happy to say my first experiment worked beautifully (and deliciously)!  They are so chock-full of veggies and very little sugar, you will feel great about giving these to your children.  Really, I'm not sure why they are called 'Toddler Muffins' as anyone will enjoy these!

The first step in this recipe is to make the 'eggs.' In a small bowl, mix together 2 Tablespoons ground flax seed with 6 Tablespoons water.  After it sits for a few minutes, it will become gelatinous, which will mimic the moisture of eggs. For the batter, simply cream the shortening and brown sugar together, and then stir in the mashed bananas, grated carrots, squash, and 'eggs.' It quickly becomes a colorful batter.:

The dry ingredients are then whisked together and added to the batter.  Once the cider vinegar is added, the batter becomes nice and fluffy.  It is scooped, 1 rounded Tablespoon at a time, into a prepared mini muffin tin and baked in a 375 degree oven for 15-17 minutes.:

Look at those beauties!  They are delicious all by themselves, but I really like them with a bit of vegan margarine and a bit of cinnamon sugar or honey.  Mmmmmm!


Allergy-free Toddler Muffins
(makes 24-30 mini muffins)

1/2 c dairy-free, soy-free vegetable shortening
1/2 c brown sugar
2 bananas, mashed
1 4-oz jar baby squash
2 carrots, grated
2 'eggs' (2 T ground flax + 6 T water)
1 c Gluten-free flour mix (I use 6:2:1 Superfine brown rice flour, potato starch, tapioca flour)
1/2 c sorghum flour
1 1/4 t baking soda
1 t pumpkin pie spice
1/2 t salt
1/2 t xanthan gum
1 T cider vinegar


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Prepare mini muffin tin by spraying with oil and dusting with GF flour.
  2. Prepare the 'eggs' and allow a few minutes to thicken.
  3. Cream together the shortening and brown sugar.  Stir in the bananas, squash, carrots, and 'eggs' and mix well.
  4. Whisk together all of the dry ingredients and stir into the batter. Stir in the cider vinegar.
  5. Scoop by rounded Tablespoons into the mini muffin tin.
  6. Bake for 15-17 minutes.  Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes and enjoy!

Allergy-free Snickerdoodles

Let me just say whoever invented Superfine Brown Rice Flour needs to win some sort of major culinary award or possibly even a Nobel Peace Prize.  The texture is so much like AP flour with no perceptible grainy-ness.

My son needed to bring a treat to school this week because he is the 'Student of the Week.'  Even though he has no food allergies (except to peanuts), these allergy-free cookies happen to be his favorite.  The recipe comes from Cybele Pascal's 'The Allergen-Free Baker's Handbook' with a few modifications.

The steps are quite easy.  You just combine the Ener-G Egg Replacer with dairy-free milk (I use coconut milk) in a small bowl, whisk the dry ingredients in a medium bowl, and cream the shortening and sugar in a large bowl.   Once the 'egg' and vanilla are mixed into the shortening, you simply alternate the flour mixture with milk until it is thoroughly combined.

Next, you form the dough into 1-1.5" balls and roll in a cinnamon sugar mixture.  They are placed on the cookie sheet, at least 2 inches apart. Don't they look like Dunkin' Donuts Munchkins?:

After baking for only 10 minutes, here is the final result.  Don't they look delicious?:

The recipe makes 24 Snickerdoodles.  We only needed 18 for my son's class, so my other kids quickly gobbled down the remaining 6.  Well, ok, I had one myself. :) I couldn't resist!


Allergy-Free Snickerdoodles

2 1/2 c Gluten-free flour mix (6:2:1 Superfine Brown rice flour, potato starch, tapioca flour)
1/2 t xanthan gum
3/4 t baking soda
1 1/2 t cream of tartar
1/4 t salt
3/4 c dairy-free, soy-free vegetable shortening (I like Spectrum )
1 c sugar
2 t vanilla extract
1 'egg' (2 t Ener-G egg replacer + 2 T coconut milk)
1/4 c coconut milk
2 T sugar + 2 t ground cinnamon


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Mix the 'egg' together in a small bowl.
  2. Whisk together the flour mix, xanthan gum, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt.
  3. Cream together the shortening and sugar until fluffy, about 2 minutes.  Add the vanilla and 'egg' and mix for 20 seconds.
  4. Add the flour mixture in two batches, mixing on low speed, alternating with the coconut milk.
  5. Roll the dough into 24 heaping tablespoon-size balls (1.5" in diameter).  Roll the balls in the cinnamon-sugar mixture until well-coated on all sides.
  6. Place the balls on baking sheets at least 2 inches apart.  Bake for 10 minutes.  Let cool for 5-10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
  7. Enjoy!

Allergy-free Pancakes

Do you have food allergies and just crave pancakes sometimes, especially on a lazy weekend morning?   

I've made pancakes for my kids for years, but I've recently had to figure out how to make them without wheat, due to my daughter's allergy.  So, I took my typical vegan pancake recipe and modified it a bit. 

The first thing I did was to make the vegan 'buttermilk' and 'egg' and set them aside. They will be combined later with the oil and added to the dry mixture.

Now, here's the key to making these pancakes really tasty: add some oat flour to the batter. You can either buy it at the store or just grind it yourself.  I prefer to grind myself because it's really easy.  Just measure the oats, pour them into the grinder and hold the button until the mixture has a flour-like consistency:

I whisked all of the dry ingredients in a medium bowl, including the ground oat flour.:

I then combined all of the liquid ingredients, including the oil, in a measuring cup and added them to the dry mixture.  Initially, the batter was a bit thin, but because the oats readily absorb liquid, it became thicker after a few minutes.  I would recommend waiting 5 minutes or so before cooking the pancakes.

Once the griddle was hot enough, I poured about 1/4 cup of batter onto the griddle for each pancake...:

...and flipped them over after bubbles appeared on the surface and edges started to appear dry. I let them cook 1-2 minutes more and then start stacking them on the plates.   

My daughter loves them just as much as she used to love my vegan whole wheat pancakes.  I say that's a successful recipe!


Allergy-free Pancakes
(makes 8, 4" pancakes)

1/2 c gluten-free flour mix (6:2:1, Superfine rice flour, potato starch, tapioca flour)
1/2 c oat flour
1 T sugar
1 'egg' (2 tsp Ener-G egg replacer + 2 T coconut milk)
1 c 'buttermilk' (1 c coconut milk + 1 T cider vinegar)
1/2 t baking soda
1 t baking powder
1/2 t ground cinnamon
1/4 t salt
1/4 t xanthan gum
2 T mild vegetable oil

  1. Heat griddle over medium-high heat.
  2. Prepare the 'buttermilk' and 'egg' and set aside.
  3. Whisk together all of the dry ingredients in a medium bowl.  For the oat flour, measure the oats in a food/coffee grinder and grind until they are the consistency of flour.
  4. Combine all of the liquid ingredients and stir into the dry mixture.  Let sit for 5 minutes to thicken. If the batter become too thick, add more coconut milk, 2T at a time.
  5. When the griddle is hot enough (feels hot when you hold your hand directly above it), lightly grease it. For each pancake, pour 1/4 cup of batter onto the griddle.  
  6. Cook 3 to 5 minutes, until bubbles appear on the surface and the undersides are golden brown.
  7. Turn the pancakes over and cook 1 to 2 minutes on the other side.
  8. Enjoy with vegan margarine, powdered sugar, fresh fruit, or syrup!

5 Easy Dinners

When I plan my dinner menu for the week, I like to plan at least 5 days of meals (Monday-Friday).  On Saturday and Sunday, we typically eat leftovers, eat out or have some sort of event or get-together with our family.  I thought I would share 5 easy main courses.  All of them are dairy, egg, nut, and wheat-free. Keep in mind, we are meat eaters.  I've included 5 meat/fish based main course ideas with side dish ideas at the end.

Dinner #1: Baked Salmon - This dish takes all of 15-20 minutes to prepare.  Once the salmon fillets are thawed, I sprinkle them with a rub and bake them at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.

Dinner #2: Maple-mustard chicken thighs - Another easy dish, this one involves marinating some boneless chicken thighs (2 lb) in a mixture of dijon mustard (1/3 c), maple syrup (3 T), and dried rosemary (1 t) in a Ziploc bag.  After marinating for at least 30 minutes, the thighs are simply grilled:

Dinner #3: BLT lettuce wraps - these yummy 'wraps' consist of bacon slices, fresh sliced tomatoes, and guacamole, all on top of a piece of romaine lettuce.:

Dinner #4: Roasted lemon chicken - This recipe was originally listed in Glamour Magazine's  '100 Recipes Every Woman Should Know.' It is also listed on Martha Stewart's website here.  It really is so basic as well as wonderfully juicy and delicious.  

The ingredients simply include lots of lemons, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and herbs.  You just pour the lemon juice over the chicken and then season it with salt and pepper, inside and out.

Two lemons are then poked with a fork and inserted into the chicken.  I didn't have any twine on hand, so I didn't truss the chicken.  It looks a lot less professional, but it doesn't change how the chicken cooks.  To prevent the breasts from getting too dry I baked it, breast side-up, for 15 minutes and then flipped it over and baked it breast side-down for another hour or so. 

The result is a wonderfully browned, juicy bird with crisp skin.  The juices in the pan can be poured over the carved chicken for extra delicious flavor.

Dinner #5: Grilled Bratwurst.  Little explanation needed here.  Just pick up your favorite bratwursts and grill!

Side dish ideas: I usually serve a vegetable or fruit side dish along with my main courses.  Some examples include a salad with fresh veggies and vinaigrette, roasted asparagus, sliced tomatoes, steamed green beans or broccoli, and fresh berries.  For the most nutrition, I try to include as much color on the plate as possible. 

I hope this post has helped inspire you in your meal planning for the week!  What are some of your favorite allergy-free dinners?

Shared on: Gracelaced Mondays, Allergy-Free Wednesdays, Tastetastic Thursdays, Gluten Free Fridays

Allergy-free Beef Bourguignon

When you ask most children what their favorite food is, you get answers like pizza, hot dogs, and ice cream.  Not my daughter. For as long as I can remember, her favorite food has been Beef Bourguignon.  Try to spell that word without looking it up!  In fact, she loves it so much we made a haiku for the dish:

Bacon, red wine, thyme,
Tender meat and mushrooms too,
Beef Bourguignon, yum!

This recipe was given to me by a good friend who brought me a batch after having my third child.  She has fond memories of coming home from school and smelling this dish cooking in her mother's kitchen.  The aroma truly pervades the whole house.

This recipe uses a crockpot as well as a saute pan. It starts with seasoning the meat and dusting it with gluten-free flour.  Once the bacon is cooked, the meat is then sautéed in the bacon grease.  How good does that sound? For this recipe, I had to brown the meat in three separate batches.  Each browned batch was then added to the crockpot.:

After all of the meat was browned, the onions and garlic were then cooked in the saute pan until they were slightly softened.  They were added to the crockpot as well.  At this point, the flavors are starting to stack up: bacon, browned meat, onions, garlic...yum!

Then comes the piece de resistance: deglazing the pan with Pinot Noir.  What a glorious concoction!  The wine was then also added to the crockpot, along with the mushrooms and various spices. 

The stew was then covered and cooked over high heat until the meat was quite tender.  We enjoy eating this dish out of bowls, like a stew.  My friend recommends serving it over jasmine rice.  Either way, it will be a comforting, allergy-free, delicious dish for your family!


Beef Bourguignon

1/2-3/4 c gluten-free flour mix (6:2:1, Superfine rice flour, potato starch, tapioca flour)
5 lb beef stew meat, cut into 1" pieces
Salt and pepper
5 thick slices of bacon, cut into small pieces
2-4 T olive oil
2 yellow onions, chopped
5 garlic cloves, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 t dried thyme leaves
1 t dried parsley
1 lb button mushrooms, halved (white, cremini, or baby bella)
1 bottle Pinot Noir (this type is important)

  1. Salt and pepper the beef and then dust with flour mix.
  2. In a large saute pan, cook the bacon and transfer to a large slow-cooker.
  3. In the bacon drippings, brown the beef in batches on all sides, adding oil if necessary. Transfer to the slow-cooker.
  4. Add onion and garlic to pan.  Cook until tender, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.  Transfer to slow cooker with bay leaves, thyme, parsley, and mushrooms.
  5. Off heat, pour wine into pan; set over medium-high heat, and bring to boil, scraping up browned bits.  Add to slow-cooker.  Cover and cook until meat is fork-tender, 5-6 hours on high.
  6. Serve over brown or jasmine rice, and garnish with fresh parsley.