Maxine’s Heavenly Cookies Review

By | Oct 10, 2017

By Maria Luci, Beyond Celiac Communications Coordinator

There’s no better way to start a Monday than with a box of gluten-free cookies on your desk! I opened the brown package left in my office and was happy to find bags of Maxine’s Heavenly Cookies just begging to be ripped open.

Maxine’s bills themselves as delicious cookies handmade from the purest ingredients. They say that despite being a yummy cookie, they’re also healthy snacks that are certified gluten-free, non-GMO, and vegan. Healthy, vegan, gluten-free AND delicious? I had to see for myself…

Looking at the ingredients, I notice the base of all of them is gluten-free oats, so I’m guessing they’ll all have that oatmeal cookie essence. I first tried the cinnamon oatmeal raisin. They were dense and a little crumbly, which I’m used to with gluten-free cookies. One cookie filled me up, which is good because I notice after that each cookie is 120 calories. I’m guessing it’s the oats and that leave me feeling satisfied, but the taste was, in fact, yummy. They were a nice mix of a traditional oatmeal raisin cookie with a hint of cinnamon to make them unique.

Since one cookie filled me up, I waited until the afternoon to try more. Next was the pumpkin pecan spice, which had a nice texture with the pecans and a lovely flavorful fall spice taste. Still a bit crumbly, but what you gonna do? If you like pumpkin spice treats and don’t mind a few crumbs, these cookies are for you.

I also nibbled on the chocolate chocolate chips, which were a little too chocolatey for me (I know, I’m weird), but the peanut butter chocolate chip hit the right chocolate note. And indeed, all the cookies did have that oatmeal cookie ‘spirit’ underneath their other flavors.

Another coworker tried a cookie lunch and was surprised to learn they were not only gluten-free but vegan as well. We all agreed that we wouldn’t have guessed that.

So yes, we agree, these are surprisingly good gluten-free and vegan cookies!

Boar’s Head Hummus

By | Sep 24, 2017

By guest blogger Cindy Gordon of Vegetarian Mamma

The Boar’s Head brand was started in 1905 in New York City. The founder, Frank Brunckhorst was dissatisfied with the quality of the meat found in delicatessens, and sought out to create a better product, one that focused on quality above all else. Over the past 110 years, the company’s standards and values have remained the same, and they continue to produce high quality deli meats, cheeses, and condiments.

One of Boar’s Head’s newer products is a line of hummus that is gluten free, non-GMO, and crafted with premium ingredients. Each batch is created with chickpeas, tahini, olive oil, sea salt, and savory spices sourced from around the globe. Boar’s Head hummus comes in 9 varieties, including traditional favorites like garlic and roasted red pepper, and some more creative flavors like Tuscan white bean, artichoke and spinach, and southwest style black bean.

Wondering just exactly what ALL the 9 flavors are? Check these out:

  • Traditional
  • Roasted Red Pepper
  • Kalamata Olive Tapenade
  • Fire Roasted Artichoke and Spinach
  • Fiery Chipotle Pepper
  • Tuscan Style White Bean
  • Southwest Style Black Bean
  • Roasted Pine Nut
  • Roasted Garlic

Hummus is something that my vegetarian family eats a lot of. We love the flavor and the texture. Hummus provides some extra protein as well, since it is made from chickpeas. We are a very busy family and always on-the-go.

I recently found a new-to-me item when shopping for Boar’s Head Cheese. I found some Boar’s Head Gluten-Free Hummus and Pretzel packs. Now that is exciting! A packaged hummus and pretzels on-the-go pack that is gluten-free!

These 3 oz snack packs make my heart skip a beat. I am honestly in love with these. They are the perfect size to send to school for my first graders afternoon snack! Not only can I provide him a safe gluten-free snack but it is also delicious and packs a punch of 4 grams of protein! They are also great for a snack after a sports practice as well!

Not only are these snack packs (and all Boar’s Head products) gluten-free but they are also free from added MSG, fillers, by-products, artificial flavors and artificial colors.

Visit Boar’s Head’s website to learn more about their delicious hummus and all of their other quality gluten free products. All of Boar’s Head meat, cheese, condiments and hummus are gluten-free!

Guest Author, Cindy Gordon, is the owner and writer behind VegetarianMamma.com. Cindy shares recipes that are gluten-free and vegetarian on her site.  Her site also shares insight to her gluten-free travel experiences and provides tips on where to safely travel while gluten-free.

Keto Kookies

By | Sep 20, 2017

By Maria Luci, Beyond Celiac Communications Coordinator

I’ll admit, I didn’t know much about the ketogenic diet before a box of Keto Kookies showed up on my desk. Intrigued, I did some research before diving into the gluten-free brown bags of cookies. It turns out, the diet was popular in the 1920s and 30s as a way to treat epilepsy. Today people follow the Ketogenic diet for a number of reasons including to treat seizures when medication doesn’t work, to lose weight, to help with diabetes and to improve energy.

One of the creators of Keto Kookies discovered this high fat, low carb diet after listening to a neuroscientist discuss it in a podcast.

While the keto diet is gluten free, I would  advise anyone interested to discuss it with their doctor first. However, there’s no harm in enjoying some cookies that are ketogenic-compliant. Besides, who doesn’t like a free cookie?

But first, what’s in a Keto Kookie? It’s a high fat, low carb/sugar, gluten-free treat. It’s made up of coconut flour and oils, erythritol (a natural sugar substitute), grass-fed butter, monk fruit, and almonds. They’re gluten-free, paleo diet-friendly, no sugar added, non-GMO and, of course, ketogenic diet-friendly. The company claims the cookies have no effect on blood sugars.

First I opened the bag with Peanut Butter cookies. There were two in the inviting brown package. I gave it a nibble and the first thing I noticed was the hint of peanut butter. I must admit, you shouldn’t go in expecting a regular cookie flavor. The sweetness was much more subdued but I could taste the peanut butter and the butteryness. The texture was dense and yet a little crumbly. Next was a Snickerdoodle, whose cinnamon flavor is personally more preferable to me than the peanut butter. But my favorite of the stack was the Birthday Cake. These had little confetti flecks of color and a hint of birthday cake batter taste. I wish I’d had a coffee to dunk these in, because I felt they would make a good (albeit softer) biscotti replacement. Not too sugary, but just the right hint of sweetness to accompany a cup of joe.

All in all, I think Keto Kookies are a good addition to a low sugar/low carb, gluten-free diet. For those days when you really want a treat but don’t want to feel guilty about it, I say try a Keto Kookie.

Boar’s Head Cheeses

By | Sep 11, 2017

By guest blogger Cindy Gordon of Vegetarian Mamma

When it comes to eating gluten-free, we need to make sure that the food we are putting into our bodies is indeed gluten-free. When it comes to cheese, you do need to be cautious. Love deli cheese? You have to be cautious of cross contamination from the cheese slicer in the deli. If you want to be safe and not worry, you need to search out Boar’s Head Cheese.

Boar’s Head is a family owned business that started in New York City over 110 years ago. Frank Brunckhorst founded the company out of his dissatisfaction with the quality of deli meats available at the time. He set out to create a brand that focused on quality meat, and started the line of deli meats, cheeses, and condiments that we still enjoy today. Boar’s Head prides themselves as being master craftsmen in their industry, and skilled artisans in the art of meat and cheese making. They hold themselves to high standards of quality, use only the finest ingredients, and their entire product line is gluten-free.

Boar’s Head offers 25 varieties of cheese, in styles from all over the world. You can find Vermont cheddar, Danish blue cheese, Swiss cheeses, French goat cheese, and more at your local deli. Boar’s Head has 6 varieties of Gouda cheese, fresh mozzarella, and two varieties of hard Italian cheese as well.

Boar’s Head Cheese is delicious enough to eat as a stand-alone item or on your favorite sandwich. We recently created a delicious and quick lunch option that uses Boar’s Head Cheese.

Lunch time on the weekends is hectic around my house. There always seems to be something going on. We rely on Boar’s Head to provide us with delicious tasting gluten-free cheese. Our latest creation was a quesadilla.

For this quesadilla we used the Colby Jack cheese from Boar’s Head. Colby Jack is a tasty mixture of Colby and Monterey Jack cheeses. It is a semi soft cheese that is sold in many shapes. For our quesadilla, we used the Coby Jack cheese slices.

Ingredients:

  • 1 gluten-free soft tortilla shell
  • ½ cup pinto beans, smashed
  • 2 slices of Boar’s Head Colby Jack Cheese
  • optional garnish: Sour Cream, Guacamole, Salsa, Cilantro, Green Onions

Directions:

  1. In a medium skillet over medium heat, warm the soft tortilla shell.
  2. Place one slice of Boar’s Head Colby Jack cheese on half of the tortilla.
  3. Next, layer the smashed beans on top of the cheese slice.
  4. Place the remaining Colby Jack cheese slice on top of the smashed beans.
  5. Fold the tortilla in half. Warm each side to a golden brown or until the cheese melts.
  6. Garnish with your favorite extras such as sour cream, guacamole, salsa, cilantro or green onions.

ENJOY!

Gluten free quesadilla recipe with Boar's Head cheese

Boar’s Head Cheese is a great option for my family. We love that the cheese slices come in resealable containers. This works out very well for my family. The cheese stays fresh and protected in the containers.

Check out the full selection on their website, you’re sure to find your favorite.

Guest Author, Cindy Gordon, is the owner and writer behind VegetarianMamma.com  Cindy shares recipes that are gluten-free and vegetarian on her site.  Her site also shares insight to her gluten-free travel experiences and provides tips on where to safely travel while gluten-free.

Crunchmaster Tuscan Peasant Snack Crackers

By | Sep 11, 2017

By Maria Luci, Beyond Celiac Communications Coordinator

It’s no secret that I love Crunchmaster crackers. They’re crunchy and full of flavor and best of all, they’re totally gluten-free. However, to me, there is one kind of Crunchmaster crackers that stands above the rest… and that’s their Tuscan Peasant Crackers.

Coming in three flavors–Garlic & Italian Herb, Rosemary and Simply Olive Oil & Sea Salt–Crunchmaster’s Tuscan Peasant Crackers are a true delight to the taste buds. Crunchy with robust flavors and slow-baked with whole grains, these old-world style crackers are seriously delicious.

While all three are full of flavor, my personal favorite are the Rosemary crackers. The hint of rosemary is just perfect and the overall flavor is on point.  I’d love to try the Garlic & Italian herb variety dipped in the Roasted Red Pepper Hummus recipe shared on the back of the bag or dip the Simply Olive Oil & Sea Salt into this …

Luckily for me, all Crunchmaster crackers are gluten-free and non-GMO. Their crackers tap into the notion that simple recipes of the past are often more flavorful and better for you than the highly processed foods of today. Timeless artisan tastes and simple, wholesome ingredients make their Tuscan Peasant Crackers a guilt-free treat. With 16 grams of whole grains per serving, they’re a hearty canvas for classic recipes and combine old world inspiration with modern taste

Boar’s Head Butcher Craft Jerky

By | Aug 22, 2017

By guest author Anna Sonnenberg, blogger at Gluten-Free Jet Set

As a frequent gluten-free traveler, I often find myself roaming off the beaten path where safe snacks aren’t always easy to find. So what’s a celiac on the go to do? Pack snacks like Boar’s Head jerky, of course! Let’s look at some all-too-common snack situations and see how a quick nosh like Boar’s Head jerky is the perfect solution for gluten-free travelers.

Cross-Country Flights

Flying is my preferred mode of travel, but I don’t love the food options that are usually available on board. Flights within the U.S. typically have limited or completely nonexistent gluten-free options, and pickings can be slim on long-haul flights to other countries, too. Even reserving an in-flight gluten-free meal doesn’t guarantee that I’ll get what I asked for — or that I’ll want to eat it.

That’s why having adequate snacks on hand is essential. Not just any snacks will do, though. You need something high in protein to keep you satisfied, especially during a long-haul flight. Boar’s Head Butcher Craft Beechwood Smoked Pork Jerky is a great choice for plane rides. It’s gluten-free, packed with smoky flavor, and there’s enough to share with your seatmates if you’re feeling generous.

Road Trips

Short road trips of just a couple of hours can be incredibly easy to plan for, especially if I have the time to fine-tune my route and plan a stop or two along the way. Longer road trips are much trickier, though, especially with family or friends in tow. Planning every stop isn’t always possible, especially if delays on the road throw me off my schedule or force me to take a detour.

If (like me) you don’t usually pack a cooler for road trips, you need snacks that can hold up on their own. Gluten-free Boar’s Head Butcher Craft Cracked Pepper Mill Turkey Jerky is a delish choice for road trips, especially if you pack a few accompaniments like apple slices and some sharp cheddar cheese.

Train Rides

From my home base on the East Coast, taking the train is super easy. It also gives me a chance to sit back and catch up on reading or trip planning as I watch the countryside chug by. Even if I’m lucky enough to have a fully stocked snack car, though, I know I may not find any certified gluten-free snacks on board.

For a train ride, you’ll want to keep things as streamlined as possible, especially if you’re lugging your bags with you. Throw a packet of Boar’s Head Butcher Craft Teriyaki-Style Beef Jerky in your purse, and you’ll have a tasty gluten-free, MSG-free, and preservative-free snack that’ll keep you going until you reach your destination.

All-Day Outings

When I’m on the road, I like to plan long days jam-packed with sightseeing, whether I’m checking out a new-to-me neighborhood in New York City or climbing a volcano in New Zealand. When I’m trying to fit in as many activities as possible, there’s no telling what food options I’ll find along the way — or if I’ll have time to stop for a bite to eat.

For a long day of sightseeing, pack as much variety as you can carry, like gluten-free Boar’s Head Butcher Craft Buffalo-Style Turkey Jerky, some raw cashews, and some dried fruit . You’ll have plenty of options to stave off hangry feelings, and you’ll still feel great at the end of the day.

Have you tried Boar’s Head gluten-free jerky yet? Which flavor is your favorite?

Crunchmaster Multi-Seed Artisan Cheesy Garlic Bread Crackers

By | Aug 14, 2017

By Maria Luci, Beyond Celiac Communications Coordinator 

If you can’t eat gluten like myself, crunchy crackers and cheesy garlic bread are not typically treats you get to indulge in. However, Crunchmaster is now making a new cheesy garlic bread cracker! We opened a bag in the office and I was the first to dive in!

Thankfully, all Crunchmaster crackers are gluten-free, non-GMO, and very flavorful. Their new cheesy garlic bread crackers are baked with sesame, quinoa, flax and amaranth seeds and feature a cheesy taste with a hint of garlic. What I liked the most about these crackers are that they are a healthy snack that tastes amazing! They’re all made with whole grains and no artificial flavors or colors and have zero cholesterol.

A few crackers in, I started dreaming of all the ways I could use these crispy treats. Topped with sundried tomatoes, dipped in sauces, mmmm… Then I turned the bag over and noticed Crunchmaster’s Creamy Artichoke & Bacon Pesto recipe on the back—which sounds to me like an absolutely perfect dip to pair with these crackers!

I’d recommend trying these crackers, and the dip recipe, anytime you have a craving for something crunchy, cheesy, and garlicky—whether you’re gluten-free or not!

Tate’s Bake Shop’s Gluten-Free Cookies and Brownies

By | Aug 1, 2017

By Maria Luci, Beyond Celiac Communications Coordinator

There’s nothing like walking into the office kitchen to see a giant basket full of cookies and brownies. Well, unless you have celiac disease, which means you usually just get to watch others enjoy gluten-filled goodies. However, at Beyond Celiac, that treats are always gluten-free… so I was delighted to see a basket of Tate’s Bake Shop assorted gluten-free cookies and brownies sitting on our counter.

Lucky for us, Tate’s Bake Shop, based in Southampton, NY, bakes all of its gluten-free products at a dedicated gluten-free facility. Putting down the yogurt I’d brought for a later time, I immediately dove into a Tate’s Bake Shop gluten-free chocolate brownie. It’d been so long since I had a brownie and I was very excited. The first bite was ooey gooey goodness. A rich chocolate flavor greeted me along with a smooth creamy aftertaste. My only “complaint” would be that it was so decadent that I could only eat about a third before I had to hide it away at my desk for later.

My coworker Kate also tried a brownie, declaring it delicious. She added that it was, “very soft and really chocolatey, which is exactly what I look for in a brownie. I bet it would be perfect warmed up and served with ice cream.”

Kate was also the first to open up the bag of gluten-free double chocolate chip cookies. She said, “They have a great chocolate flavor and aren’t too sweet. They’re crispy, which isn’t normally something I love in a chocolate chip cookie, but I liked these. They have a good amount of chocolate chips in them too, which helps balance out the crispiness.”

I opened the bag of gluten-free chocolate chip cookies. Unfortunately, during their travel to our office many of the extra crispy cookies had crumbled. But that didn’t deter me! I grabbed several chunks and chomped in. They were yummy, just how I remember regular chocolate chip cookies tasting. Buttery and full of flavor. It took a strong will to stop myself from eating the rest.

There are still several cookies and a blondie to get through in this gluten-free gift basket, but so far I can say that Tate’s gluten-free selection hits the spot!

Crunchmaster Multi-Seed Signature Buttermilk Ranch & Dill Crackers

By | Jul 26, 2017

By Maria Luci, Beyond Celiac Communications Coordinator

When I first went gluten-free, I was sad to give up so many of my favorite snacks. I was especially bummed to lose the crunchy satisfaction of a flavorful cracker. For about three years I stayed mostly cracker-free, as I found many gluten-free crackers to have strange flavors or aftertastes. They just weren’t worth it. That is, until a box of Crunchmaster crackers landed on my desk.

Crunchmaster Multi-Seed Buttermilk Ranch & Dill Crackers Review

I’ve been making my way through the many styles and flavors of Crunchmaster crackers (at a quick pace!) and have been delighted upon the opening of each new bag. The crunch is real, the flavors are deep, the taste is not like any other gluten-free cracker I’ve tried. My latest foray into the world of Crunchmaster? Their Multi-Seed Signature Buttermilk Ranch and Dill crackers. These crackers are savory, crunchy, baked and made with sesame, quinoa, flax and amaranth seeds. These seed-filled hexagons are packed with a burst of ranch flavor in every bite.

Upon first nibble, I was surprised with a super strong, creamy buttermilk ranch taste, followed by the smooth flavor of dill. They’re delicious on their own but I could also see these pairing nicely with a smoked cheese or the buffalo wing party dip recipe found on the back of the bag.

What’s also great about these crackers is that they are certified gluten-free and are non-GMO. They’re also kosher. Made with whole grains and other wholesome ingredients what these crackers are without are any artificial colors, flavors, trans fat, or cholesterol. So they’re a delicious snack you can feel good about!

Crunchmaster Protein Snack Crackers

By | Jul 19, 2017

By Maria Luci, Beyond Celiac Communications Coordinator

I’m just going to have one cracker, I told myself, opening a bag of Crunchmaster’s Roasted Garlic Protein Snack Crackers. Just one little cracker. Fast forward twenty minutes and I find myself with an almost empty bag of crackers. Suffice to say, these gluten-free crackers are good.

Gluten free crackers

Living up to their name, Crunchmaster’s newly released Protein Snack Crackers are super crunchy and full of flavor. Coming in Roasted Garlic, Sea Salt, and Barbeque, these crackers somehow pack a giant explosion of taste into a little crunchy square. Better yet, these baked crackers are certified gluten-free, non-GMO and filled with plant-based proteins from brown rice and chickpea flours. Each serving has 5 grams of vegetable proteins while being free of soy, whey, cholesterol, and artificial colors and flavors. They’re also vegan and kosher! It’s hard to believe these crackers offer so much while being so incredibly tasty. Even if I didn’t eat gluten-free, I’d still buy these crackers for snacks and parties.

While munching on these crackers by themselves was enough for me for a midmorning snack, I couldn’t help be dream about all the combinations of flavors that would take these to the next level. What if I added brie cheese and apple atop the sea salt crackers? What about red pepper hummus with the garlic crackers? What about dipping the barbeque crackers into a blue cheese dip? I browsed the Crunchmaster Recipe Box on Beyond Celiac for ideas and ended up digging into the Barbeque Protein Snack crackers. These were also crunchy, light, and full of a semi-sweet, semi-tangy barbeque flavor.

The possibilities with Crunchmaster crackers are endless… unlike the bags of crackers on my desk that are now empty.

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