Quick kid lunches

It has been awhile, or ”a hot minute” as the youths say- actually I don’t know if they say that any more or not. I’m guessing not, since my ”hip” vernacular continues to embarrass my younger siblings. Thankfully my own kids aren’t too cool for me yet, but I know my days are numbered. While I’m not yet worthy of full on eye rolls, my kids are keeping me quite busy between school and all their activities giving me the sense that time is just moving faster and faster. Throw in the holiday season and boom, I’m too exhausted to blog. We’ve been having quite the adventures with 4H, American Heritage Girls, and Trail Life. Although we homeschool, we’ve gotten experience “fundraising season” and let me tell ya- it’s not for the faint of heart! I am grateful for the experience. We can all use help during these busy and stressful times so I thought I’d share a quick look at lunches for on the go again. Our diet (I don’t like that word, it sounds like a lifestyle choice born from vanity but alas, it is the most commonly accepted term) has catered more towards the Autoimmune Protocol again due to several health issues in the the family. However I am transitioning the kids slowly for all our sakes. Here is a lunch we had today.

Caidoc- Homemade grass fed dragon fruit gummies, lightly steam carrot sticks, almond flour crackers, soaked and dried pecans, a lollipop from one of my favorite candy sources, and almond flour tortilla with ham.
Azèlie- almond flour tortilla with ham, almond flour crackers, the same pecans, carrots, and gummies as C, but with a mandarin and a dark chocolate.
Cosima- carrots, almond flour tortillas with ham, a Babybel cheese, gummies, almond flour crackers, and a dark Unreal chocolate like A.

These are so easy to whip up from things that keep well in the fridge for several weeks and have no over load of PUFAS and no grains. It feels so much better to be prepared for our adventures. It’s a big plus that I can delegate some food prep to the kids too! It sets us all up to win. I hope this post helps give you some inspiration for a quick healthy lunch for these busy fall days.

While I hope to get back to filling you all in soon, that might not be until our Christmas letter. In the meantime, we will be busy with all our Advent activities which you can read a bit about here. We’ve since added more traditions and of course the kids getting older means more obligations, but at all just adds to this crazy wonderful life that I am so grateful for.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Dairy free Gluten free Orange Dreamsicle Smoothie

This smoothie is perfect for an afternoon treat or dessert. It has a a sneaky serving of veggies which give a lovely color as well! The sweet Forager yogurt gives a boost of probiotics and keeps the dairy free folk feeling well. Pro tip: This yogurt also works really well for granola as a dairy free milk substitute if you don’t like other alternative milks.


serves 5

2 bananas

1 cup of Forager Organic Dairy-free Probiotic Cashewmilk Yogurt Vanilla Bean

3 scoops of Vital Proteins collagen peptides

2 cups of frozen mango

3 medium sized carrots

1 cup of filter water

handful of ice


  1. Throw all the ingredients in the blender and enjoy!

On-the-go Kid Approved Treats

Sometimes we need an easy win, right? More often than not food can be a contention between parent and child. Sometimes it’s the type of food, sometimes it’s the way the food is presented. I’d say my greatest struggle with food and kids is when we are out and about craving a treat, and I have not prepared something in advance.

Now we won’t go into anaphylactic shock if we eat certain foods, but if we make our particular sensitivities a habit the effects will be devastating, short term and long term. So, when I get stuck with not great food options, I feel extra lousy because it’s a product of my poor planning. The kids know certain choices aren’t good for them (they can feel it instantly!), and yet they want them so bad and when they don’t have something to fall back on- cue the understandable bad tempers. Guilty frustrated mom, hungry frustrated kids: it’s a crummy situation overall folks. Luckily, there is a way to prevent that. My ”easy win” is pre-packed treat boxes full of things my kids have picked out at Costco. They’ve read all the labels and been empowered to make “treat” choices within our diet restrictions. Once we are at home we portion and prepare the snacks popping them into handy glass or stainless steel containers then store them in the fridge. Boy, does it help with all our hikes, piano lessons, library trips, Field Trip Fridays, to and from church, 4h meetings- pretty much anywhere the snack cravings hit! The one rule we like to follow is that these are for on-the-go only, otherwise none of the leftovers at home would get eaten, haha!

Let me show you some of our favorite snacks.

Almond flour crackers, carrots (one of the kids cant eat carrots and one cant eat baby carrots their tongues will swell up and sting), and Costco hummus. This is not the greatest hummus because of the PUFA content but it was a compromise.
Almond flour crackers, a hard boiled egg (from our own chickens!) and strawberries. The bigs don’t eat egg whites, so this is Pickle’s – fingers crossed she won’t develop an egg problem! I LOVE these reusable cupcake liners. They are so versatile, cute, and dishwasher safe.
Dates, mixed nut butter, strawberries, blueberries, grapes carrots, almond flour crackers, and 85% dark chocolate- yummy treats!

That’s all for now folks! What treats do you prepare so that you can have something quick and healthy on hand?


Simple Breakfast Sausage

My mom recently gifted us some amazing ground pork sausage that she got from what we like to call one of her “underground mob boss sources”. She may not like the nickname but my mom is a legit homeschooling/healthy eating mafia don. She has been in the business for over 30 years. She had to wander around libraries to find ideas for homeschooling y’all, and like, order curriculum from tiny form in the back of a paper catalog. That is not for the faint of heart. I often wonder how she figured out so much and found all the sources she did (and does!) without the internet or without knowing anyone who was homeschooling or raising their own food. When I’ve asked her she usually just says she “read about it”.. how mom?! She is the one who needs to write a blog; the Don needs to enlighten us all. Anyways, back to the pork…

I was able to use the pork from mom to make the most delish sausage. While we ate it for dinner it would make a fantastic freezer meal for breakfast.

Simple Breakfast Sausage


1 lb ground pork sausage

1 medium size sweet potato

1 tbs allspice

1 tsp salt


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Shred sweet potato and combine with all the rest of the ingredients
  3. Shape the ingredients into small sized burger patties
  4. Bake at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes or until internal temps is at least 145 degrees
  5. Enjoy!

Energy Bites

We’ve wrapped up soccer season 2021! C and A both ended on a great note. C made an epic diving save as keeper and scored a goal.

Miss A made several saves as keeper and got to play against some of her good friends which was a fun surprise. We survived the downpours and frigid weather that really set in. Pickle was such a good sport with the crazy schedule and long days.

Soccer has ended for the year but we are still busy with all our other activities and we need all the energy we can get these days. I’m ready for the cozy slow down of the holidays! In the mean time, I’m making an extra effort to keep nourishing fuel on hand.

When I was little we made “dandy candy” and it was my favorite snack! It was simple enough for me to make as an 8 year old, so I’m hoping that this healthier twist is something one of the big kids can start making on the regular. This recipe is also a great way to get some extra organ supplements in- I promise you can’t even taste it! Still not sold? Read about the benefits of eating kidneys in the link below.

Energy Bites

Tools: mixing bowl, mixing spoon, freezer safe plate


1/2 cup peanut butter

2 1/2 scoops of collagen peptides

2 TBS chia seeds

2 TBS raw honey

1/4 cup Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips

1 TBS maca powder

3-4 TBS coconut flour

6 capsules of Grass Fed kidney supplements ( I like this brand)


  1. Mix all ingredients together until well combined. To add the kidney, open the capsules into the bowl. Discard the capsules.
  2. Roll into kiddo sized balls and freeze or refrigerate until firm.
  3. Enjoy!

I like to keep these frozen in a Tupperware, ready for whenever my energy levels start dropping in the afternoon, or for when I hear the midday, “Mom! I’m hungry!” 😊

Friday Night Fish Tacos

It’s always satisfying to come up with a new but simple recipe. I pretty much always buy the same groceries for several reasons: we have a variance of food allergies and food needs due to medical issues, I know our stores carry these items year round, they are cost effective, and I know my whole family will eat said food, haha!
When I do get hankering for something new, I try and come up a twist on some dish we eat on the regular, because who has time to do anything more elaborate, honestly? Friday is our pasta or fish day. Sometimes it’s salmon, sometimes it’s cod, and I have to admit, my cod recipes are… limited. And by limited I mean I usually just bake it and call it good 😬. Until now!

Fish Tacos

Taco filling

5 medium cod fillets (I get mine from Costco in the frozen section)

1 cup diced mango

1 large avocado diced

1 medium white onion diced


1 head organic iceberg lettuce


3 TBS Dijon mustard

2 TBS plain coconut yogurt

Splash of lemon juice

Pinch of salt


Thaw the cod in the fridge for a few hours, then bake on a rimmed cookie sheet at 350 until flaky.

Remove the fish and gently break apart the fillets into small pieces in a mixing bowl.

While the fish is baking dice the avocado and sprinkle with lemon or lime juice. Dice the mango and set aside. Dice the onion and set aside.

Wisk the mustard, yogurt, lemon juice, and salt together in a small bowl.

For the wraps, peel off leaves of lettuce, keeping them as whole as possible so they will hold the fillings well.

Serve as a taco bar (the kids love making their own!) and enjoy!

Tropical Smoothie Recipe

Smoothies are a main staple around here mainly because of their popularity, but also because they are simple to fix and I do not like cooking first thing in the morning. Here is a recipe for a smoothie I’ve been making for breakfasts lately. The kids love it! It is packed with nutrients and healthy fats- gotta feed those brains right?

Tropical Smoothie

Servings: Three 8oz glasses

Tools: blender, TBS measuring spoon, measuring cups, knife, cutting board, can opener, grater for carrots


3 TBS chia seeds

(source of omega3 fatty acids and iron)

1.5 cup of frozen organic mango chunks

(good source of fiber, antioxidants, and vitamin C)

1 organic banana

(source of fiber, potassium, and folate)

2 organic kiwis roughly chopped (don’t peel them)

(high in vitamin C and antioxidants)

1 can organic coconut milk

(source of healthy fats)

4 scoops collagen peptides

(source of protein)

1 cup shredded organic carrot

(binds to endotoxins and estrogen and flushes them through the digestive system. Also antibacterial and anti fungal)

1/2 cup organic apple sauce or chopped apple (keep the skin on!)

(source of flavonoids, protection against oxidative cell damage)

Blend well and enjoy!

Recipe Round Up

It can be so difficult to eat a clean diet let alone factoring in the individual allergy needs of a family. Add on top of that our helter-skelter schedule, and you’ve got a perfect recipe- for failure. Today I’m gonna share some of my favorite tried and true allergen friendly recipes that I always have cooked up ready in the freezer or prepared in bulk one a week, in order to keep our health a top priority. All of these recipes I’ve tried many times, with great success and they are relatively quick and easy. Here we go!



This might be tooting my own horn a bit, but I heavily rely on my homemade granola for a easy breakfast item. The best thing about this recipe is that is not loaded with sugar and PUFAs. It can be easily be altered to accommodate all types of allergies.



This is my favorite bagel recipe. It is easily adaptable for add in’s as well. I let the dough sit overnight as suggested, then once shaped I’ve let them sit for as long as another 12 hrs in the fridge before cooking them. I always long ferment anything with wheat and gluten.



I’m a firm believer in the concept of “whatchyagot stew” , basically, being creative and throwing complementary ingredients together to make something yummy, and easy. Our recent favorite is diced sweet potatoes with diced bacon, tossed together an roasted on a sheet pan. That’s it. Literally, just play it by preference on ratios, and skip oils and seasonings. It’s a family favorite.


Our lunch is frequently left overs from the night before, so I’ve combined these two categories.

Vegan Soups

Who doesn’t love soup? Maybe I’m on an extra soup kick because of the season, but these are usually in our meal rotation chilly weather or warm!



https://againstallgrain.com/2011/11/01/paleo-and-scd-pumpkin-soup/ this one is also good with added Italian sausage if you want to make it with a meat option . Also, just buy her cookbook Celebrations. It is worth every penny.

Meat Based

We buy our grass fed beef in bulk from the nicest small time farmer on the Eastern side of our state (if you want a reference hit me up!). If you are going to invest in your food, make it the MEAT. Here are some recipes we use and we all love.

https://wonkywonderful.com/garlic-rosemary-whole-30-meatballs/ highly recommend pairing with brown rice that has been soaked for 12+ hrs.

https://natashaskitchen.com/beef-stew-recipe/ this stew is delish, just make sure to leave out the flour. You don’t really need it in my option anyways.

http://www.oursmallhours.com/grain-free-meatloaf/?epik=dj0yJnU9X2JuXzVxbTkxaVhFUm96dDB4N3dvMVlrZWdrUWhrZEkmcD0wJm49WG9TUnd5ZVl1V0NQTGthdXZwdVpUdyZ0PUFBQUFBR0ZUekRF Sub the butter for olive oil and leave off the cheese for a dairy free option.

Side note: Don’t be afraid of cooking steak for kiddos, once I finally figure how to cook one properly (hint: less cook time than you think!) my kids loved it!


As you know I am a big believer in freezer meals which tend to be one stop shop type of things. Sometimes I add a soaked grain side, or a salad, or bread. Usually it is whatever I had time to make or had the ingredients handy for. In the summer my salad garden helps out there, or in winter I’ve usually canned some veggies to rely on, have some frozen, or will try and eat only the seasonal veggies available in the stores. If I’m gonna be fancy and cook something though, here are some I might choose:


https://mamashire.com/the-best-gluten-free-cornbread-recipe/ use egg replacer and only coconut milk to make this vegan and almond/cashew free. Pair with stew, yum!


It’s taken me YEARS to find a sourdough pizza recipe that works and is fool proof (honestly, I need 90% of my recipes to be brain dead, this momma is spinning fifty plates all at once, all the time). This.is.the.one. Once you get a rhythm down it’s a piece of cake. I can shape and cook 8 of these in 30 minutes. Just leave off the cheese to make it dairy free!



I’m going to be honest with you. Allergy friendly baking is even more of a challenge than cooking. However, with training, even my littles now look for recipes that are allergen friendly if they want to make cookies, or to plan for birthday cakes. My son is a whiz at cookie making and helps me read labels the stores all the time. It has become such a bonding experience, and I’m really proud of him. Here are some of our favorite cookies, crisps, and mixes!

With this recipe, make sure to use avocado oil instead of canola, and I use coconut milk instead of rice milk.

I’ve successfully used coconut flour instead of oat flour, egg replacer instead of flax, and left out the walnuts and yet this recipe still worked great. These are some of my all time faves!https://beamingbaker.com/my-favorite-vegan-oatmeal-chocolate-chip-cookies-gluten-free-dairy-free/

It is so simple to make a crisp allergen friendly, I highly recommend it to anyone struggling to fix a dessert for a friend with allergies, or as a starting point for themselves. Here is a mind-blowingly good one: https://beamingbaker.com/paleo-apple-pecan-coconut-crisp-vegan-gluten-free-dairy-free-refined-sugar-free/#tasty-recipes-21436-jump-target

Full disclosure: I cannot make a “birthday cake” type cake from scratch without real eggs. It just doesn’t work well for me. So, I highly recommend using a mix if you have to go the vegan and gluten free route. We love the brand Pamelas for just about everything; brownies, cake, cornbread, you name it. The down side is that it is expensive. So, we usually only buy those for special occasions.

If you CAN eat eggs and dairy, try this recipe out. I’ve made it a couple times for parties and it was a huge hit. Dead easy, and looks totally gourmet. https://www.girlgonegourmet.com/flourless-chocolate-cake/

That’s a wrap!

I’ve spent years baking and cooking around diets without eggs, gluten, dairy, wheat, soy, PUFAS, nuts, and beans. I’ve cooked and baked for the GAPS diet and the Auto Immune Protocol. While I am not perfect at always getting every recipe right, or slip up in ingredients from time to time, I’d like to let any and all knowledge I have be known and *hopefully* helpful to anyone searching for answers. It has been a very long and very hard road for me and my family to travel, but it is SO WORTH IT. If you are starting on your journey or stuck in the middle, chin up! You can do hard things!

Dairy-free Iced Mocha

It’s been awhile since I posted a recipe on here, and you know I’m good for allergen friendly options so I thought I’ve give you a beverage to try! This is a faintly sweet, dairy free caffeinated drink. Think; a more healthy twist on a traditional mocha. It pairs well with a long afternoon watching the kiddos in the sandbox 😉


Dairy-free Iced Mocha

Serves: 1 mom needing a fancy pick me up


8 oz plain oat milk

2 shots of fresh brewed espresso

2 tablespoons of dark cocoa powder

2 teaspoons of brown sugar

1 heaping scoop of collagen peptides

4/5 ice cubes

tall glass

optional: 80% dark chocolate shavings


Combine all ingredients except ice and chocolate shavings in a blender (a handheld blender and cup work just fine for a single serving).
Once well combined, pour over ice in a tall glass and top with chocolate shavings. Enjoy!

frothy goodness

Allergen-friendly Pierogi

Cooking certain foods for a family tradition is a labor of of love, don’t you think? Having a special cake or a breakfast item that is always served at a holiday, can work such magic! (I’m looking at you, Christmas Morning Cinnamon Rolls!) The kiddos start to anticipate certain meals and that can help give structure and excitement to the event or season. That’s what I think at least.

One of those special foods that I grew up with and continue to cook for my family is pierogi. Who doesn’t love a little pocket of dough filled with cheesy potatoes or onions and mushrooms- drool inducing, right? Well, once my family started recognizing our numerous food allergies and sensitivities I wasn’t able to cook many of our traditional foods. While I’ve been able to adjust many of our recipes over the years, it wasn’t until recently that I was able to perfect a dairy free, gluten free, and egg free pierogi recipe worthy of making every year. It’s a delicious joy to have these back in our diet!   

Allergen Friendly Pierogi 

Prep time: varies 

Cook time: ~30 minutes 

Yield: 12-16

Equipment: dough scraper, cup (3 in across the top, rolling pin, standing mixer, medium sized pot, slotted spoon, cookie sheet, parchment paper. 



1 3/4 cup Bobs Red Mill 1 to 1 gluten free flour

1 tsp fine sea salt 

1 cup warm water 

1 egg – Bobs Red Mill egg replacer 

2 tbsp olive oil 

Filling: (varies)

Potatoes: peeled and boiled 

Mushrooms; blended roughly into small bits




Sweet onion; diced as bitty as possible 

Potato; peeled and boiled 



Instructions for the filling: 

Filling for the pierogis is really up to you! It can be fun to mix around flavors. My favorite is all fresh mushroom, no seasoning or anything. 

You will need about one cup of filling for this recipe, which is why exact measurements are not given because no one is going to boil half a potato. I usually make a little extra filling just in case… or double the recipe. Or triple it. Things can quickly get out of hand where pierogis are concerned.

For potato and mushroom pierogi: 

  1. Mash potato with a fork in a small bowl. Stir in mushrooms. 
  2. Add salt and pepper to taste. 

Instructions for the dough: 

  1. Mix your egg replacer in a separate container, making sure that there are no lumps. 
  2. Combine the egg replacer and the rest of the dough ingredients in a stand mixer, mix on the lowest setting till the dough is sticking together and fully combined. The dough should be slightly sticky. If it is too dry add a tiny bit of water until you have the right consistency. 
  3. Divide the dough in half, set half aside. 
  4. Lightly dust a clean flat surface with gluten free flour and roll out one half of your dough- very gently, until it is about 1/4 inch thick. You may need to pat it flat first, as gluten free dough can be very fragile. 
  5. Cut circles out of the dough, using a cup about three inches across. It’s a good idea to twist the cup to make circles, rather than jiggling it. 
  6. To form the pierogi, take a circle of dough in your hand, and gently stretch it to about 1/8 of an inch thickness while forming more of an oval shape. This will be tricky but the thinner the dough the better. The oval shape will make it much easier to fill. 
  7. Scoop a tablespoon of filling into the oval of dough, and slowly pinch the pocket shut, starting at one end. It is critical that the pierogi is sealed. Pinch the dough shut  throughly. 
  8. Repeat steps 4-7 until all the dough is used up. Use a dough scraper to peel your scraps up and to roll out again. If your dough gets to dry it will crack while being rolled out. If that happens, wet your hands and work them through the dough and try again. If your dough is to wet, dust the surface and flip the dough through it till it reaches the right consistency. Use very small amounts of water and flour at a time, in order to not end up altering the recipe to much. 
a circle of dough cut out
the circle stretched to an oval. Notice that my dough is not smooth. It might have been a bit dry. I had to make sure it was well sealed by working with it a bit.
a heaping table spoon of filling. Try to fit as much as you can I to a pierogi without breaking the dough.
hello, yummy

Cooking the pierogi: 

  1. Fill a medium pot with water and bring to a boil. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Gently place a few pierogi in the boiling water with a slotted spoon. 
  3. Boil each pierogi for no more than three minutes. 
  4. Remove and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. 
  5. Once you have a full sheet, bake your pierogis for 25 minutes flipping them half way through . This varies based on oven and type of gluten free flour used, so check them every five minutes. (For a convection oven reduce heat to 350)

Garnish with caramelized onions or enjoy them on their own. I hope you like them! 

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