For our first Labor Day BBQ, my son was just a few months old, so we could do cheeseburgers and potato salad and mac and cheese ... Anything we wanted. Since then, though, we've been managing his allergies. And I've worked to make sure that everything on the table is something he can have.
If you have an allergic kid, their birthday and holidays and special events should be safe places. And here’s some pretty cool news, guys: If you do a dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free, nut-free, (even gluten-free) cookout, do you know what you are left with? Food.
When you face a number of food allergies, some things are slightly harder (like dinner) while other things are a lot a harder. In our case, the egg and dairy allergy has put a real damper on our breakfast options. The other thing that allergy families understand is that snacks and convenience foods can be a challenge.
So, I thought I'd share a few favorite allergy-friendly (depending on the allergy, obviously) snack options.
When eggs and dairy are off the menu, breakfast can be a real challenge. My buddy and I have been eating a lot of potatoes and sausage and bacon — so much, I guess, that he no longer likes bacon.
I'm wary of the gluten and sugar, but a couple times a month, I'd really like to be able to make pancakes or waffles. But dairy and/or eggs are always on the ingredient list.
Then, I found this mix at my local Sprouts:
All you do is add water to the mix (and maybe some Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips). Not gonna lie, the texture is a little chewy, but some maple syrup fixes that problem. And my kid didn't care. He was just so excited to be having pancakes. He helped stir and was fascinated watching them cook up.
We don't do eggs, dairy, soy, nuts or peanuts. This makes things like cakes and cookies and pie a bit challenging. And while I'm certainly hesitant to give my kiddo a lot of sugar (or gluten), I also think an occasional treat is totally OK.
But, folks, vegan baking is hard. Which is why I am so in love with this Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe by Ovenly.
The downside — especially if you're cooking with a kiddo — is that you need to make the dough a day in advance of baking. (Who can wait for cookies, right?!?!) But you can make a batch of dough in advance and let them help prep a second batch. Because you'll want more than one batch of these bad boys. (My husband doesn't need to eat our same allergy-friendly diet, yet devoured these cookies.)
When you bake with kids, you can offer to let them help measure (and count!). And who doesn't like to flip the switch on a mixer?