The Tasty Meditation Gluten Free Holiday Gift Guide: 2021 Edition

Disclaimer: I was not paid nor given free products in exchange for writing this post. I have special relationships with some of these companies and may have been given samples in the past. This post contains a few affiliate links in which I get a small commission that helps maintain the cost of this site (there is no added cost to you). All opinions are my own, and I only recommend products that I genuinely love. As always, double check labels and product information. Ingredients, allergen policies, and facilities can change at any time.

The Tasty Meditation Gluten Free Holiday Gift Guide: 2021 Edition is here! It’s more important than ever to support small businesses, so you’ll find many of my favorites listed below.

For the chocolate & sweets lover:

• See’s Candy – Gluten free chocolate truffles! Most of their chocolates do not contain gluten, but be sure to visit the allergen information page of their website for the most up to date information.

• LA Burdick hot chocolate – Kris introduced me to their hot chocolate on our first date. “I hope you brought another pair of socks…because yours are about to be knocked off.” Lucky for me – it happened to be gluten free! Their drinking chocolates are prepared in a dedicated gluten free kitchen.

• Yum Earth – Certified gluten free treats, even licorice!

• Goodie Girl Cookies – If you’re thinking that “Mint Slims” sounds almost exactly like a certain Girl Scout cookie, you are correct. So good, you’ll be tempted to eat an entire box in one sitting.

For kids (or kids at heart):

• Little GF Chefs baking kits – Absolutely adorable, creative and fun baking projects for people of all ages! The founder, Jereann Zann, is on a mission to empower kids, build confidence, and encourage a positive relationship with food. Every baking kit is made in a dedicated gluten free and top 8 allergen free facility and comes with just about everything you need to make the fun treats. Individual kits and subscriptions are available. I loved their rainbow donut kit!

• Cat-shaped cookie cutters – (affiliate link) Visit @howtocoeliac on instagram to learn how to make these perfect calico cookies!

For the experienced cook:

• Nuts.com gift certificate – (affiliate link) My favorite source for gluten free flours, nuts and dried fruit. They have a huge selection of gluten free items, and everything is clearly marked.

• Guittard Chocolate Chips – My absolute favorite chocolate to bake with. Most of their products are made in a dedicated facility and will say so on the label.

• Jovial olive oil – I didn’t know what I was missing until I tried their olive oil from Italy. Wonderfully flavorful and perfect for dipping bread and drizzling on top of pizza.

• Digital Kitchen Scale – Digital scales are essential for measuring gluten free flour accurately! So far my favorite scale is by Escali. I use it nearly every day, and years later it’s still working perfectly.

• The No Gluten, No Problem Pizza Cookbook by Kelli and Peter Bronski – (affiliate link) This book is seriously life-changing, and I make their pizzas at least three times a week. I can’t say enough wonderful things about this cookbook The recipes rival my favorite pizzas in Italy.

• Ultimate pizza-making equipment bundle – (affiliate link) I’ve compiled a collection of everything you need to make my favorite No Gluten, No Problem pizzas! The cookbook, baking steel, storage-conscious pizza peel, digital kitchen scale, and food thermometer.

• Pasta machine – (affiliate link) There’s nothing like fresh pasta! Be sure to check out my video tutorial and recipes for gluten free fettuccine, ravioli, and tortellini!

For those who enjoy easy cooking projects:

• Charlie’s Table fresh pasta – Once you try fresh pasta you’ll never want to go back to dried. Certified gluten free and made in a dedicated facility, Charlie’s Table offers pasta shapes that are difficult to find gluten free – bucatini, rigatoni, garganelli, gemelli, and tagliatelle.

• Still Riding Foods pizza crusts – One of my favorite pre-made crusts. Certified gluten free, dedicated gluten free facility, dairy free, egg free, soy free, nut free, vegan and kosher.

For the makeup lover:

• Red Apple Lipstick gift certificate – (affiliate link) Amazing allergen-friendly makeup with a wide variety of stunning lipstick colors. The Rallye Balm is a lifesaver for chapped/dry lips during the colder months. My personal favorite colors include Vogue and Ooh La La. Get 22% off orders of $50+ with the code “TastyMeditation”.

Gluten free bakeries – All of these 100% gluten free bakeries ship across the US (for residents of Alaska, Hawaii, and US territories please inquire with the bakeries directly), and several offer gift cards:

• Bread Srsly sourdough (affiliate link) – Seriously the best gluten free sourdough (and my favorite gluten free bread, in general) on the market! Made in the Bay Area, this bread nails that traditional sourdough taste. Free from gluten, wheat, egg, dairy, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, potatoes, sesame, refined sugar, and chickpeas. The last day to order for the holidays is December 12th, but I recommend ordering early because they sell out. Use code “TASTYHOLIDAY” for 10% off your order through 12/12/21!

• Krumville Bakeshop – Delicious cookies, cakes, muffins, and bread – everything that comes out of the Krumville kitchen is incredible! I recently made it my mission to try all of their layered cakes (spoiler alert – they’re all wonderful). If I had to choose one favorite, it would be three – chocolate raspberry, lemon & berries, gingerbread & cranberry. Feel free to send me a message if you’re looking for a personalize recommendation.

• Senza Gluten Cafe & Bakery – This bakery holds a very special place in my heart. My favorite items include panini bread, burger buns, almond ricotta orange cake, lemon mascarpone almond muffins, shortbread cookies, and pecan snowball cookies. After years of visiting this bakery, I recently tried the cookies for the first time. Normally when I visit in person I opt for the pastries, but wow was I missing out! Their cookies are truly magical.

• Modern Bread & Bagel – You’re not dreaming, these are real New York style bagels! When I was diagnosed with celiac disease I never thought I would experience this joy again. Infinitely grateful to Modern Bread for making this magic happen.

• Meredith’s Bread – A family-run bakery located in Kingston, NY, Meredith’s Bread is well known for selling products at farmers markets around NYC. They have two lines of products (wheat-based and gluten free – look for that GF label!), and their gluten free baked goods are made in a separate/dedicated facility. Excellent pricing. I love their rustic farmhouse breads, black and white cookies, and biscotti.

• Izzi B’s Allergen Free Bakery – So many free-from statements! This bakery is free of gluten, wheat, soy, dairy, eggs, nuts, casein, preservatives, trans-fats, refined sugar, and more! Located in Connecticut. Try the yellow cake, it’s my favorite!

• Everybody Eats – Mention Everybody Eats to a gluten free New Yorker, and they’ll immediately start talking about how kind and wonderful the owner, Pedro, is. Check out their instagram for delightful videos of Pedro singing in his bakery, and you might spot a certain special guest (spoiler alert – it’s me!). Highly recommend their gluten free baguette.

• Mariposa Baking Co – Located in San Francisco, so shipping rates are more affordable for friends on the west coast. I highly recommend their cinnamon rolls and flaky pastries. One of the few bakeries I’ve found that makes gluten free croissants!

• The Karma Baker – 100% vegan and gluten free in LA. I highly recommend their donuts.

For the bar:

• Tito’s Vodka – Certified gluten free, corn-based vodka. You might want to get some for yourself, too. I’ve found that you save more money in the long run if you buy the bigger bottle (wink).

• Barr Hill Gin – Lightly sweetened with local honey, so every batch is a little different. Labeled gluten free.

• Deep Eddy Vodka – Flavored vodka that’s labeled gluten free. Cranberry, peach, grapefruit, lemon, lime, orange, and sweet tea flavors.

• Bright Cellars – (referral link) A fun subscription box with wine tailored to your preferences. Each box comes with fun cards to help you learn about the wine you receive. The more you rate your wines, the more the algorithm learns about what you love.

• Wolffer rose cider – Our favorite cider in the Tasty Meditation kitchen, and naturally gluten free!

• Pallini Limoncello – A taste of Italy! Kris and I tried various different limoncello brands during our gluten free honeymoon in Rome, and this was by far our favorite.

Gluten free resources:

• Gluten Free Watchdog subscription – GFW is one of the most incredible advocates in the celiac disease/gluten free community, and her website is a wealth of information. Subscribers get special access to products reports (selected items are tested for gluten in a laboratory setting) and support her overall efforts.

• Gluten Dude app subscription – An excellent resource with restaurant/bakery lists, product recommendations, and moderated message boards created by celiac disease advocate Gluten Dude. See you on the app!

Happy Holidays!

Éclair Naturals #NeverAny Review & Giveaway

Even when you’ve been gluten free for years, there is always something to learn about Celiac Disease. I get asked quite frequently what my thoughts are on gluten free body care products like shampoo and lotion.

I think it’s very important. Many people have a skin sensitivity to gluten. I know someone whose eyelashes will fall out if she uses mascara that contains gluten. Another friend breaks out in a rash. And even though we don’t willingly eat shampoo or facial lotion, have you ever had a trickle of shampoo slide down your face and onto your lips? Have you ever put on lotion and then eaten a snack with your hands? There are so many ways that gluten can affect our lives and get into our systems that I’ve found it necessary for my skin products to be gluten free, as well as my food.

It is no secret that Éclair Naturals is one of my favorite companies. They are incredibly dedicated to the Celiac/GF community and make some of the best and most allergen friendly personal care products on the market today.

Fast facts:

  • Certified gluten free (tests to less than 5ppm)
  • 100% soy free
  • 100% vegan
  • Made with food grade ingredients
  • No animal testing/certified cruelty free
  • Non GMO
  • Handcrafted in small batches
  • Sustainably sourced and responsibly produced
  • Promotes no waste
  • Donates to charities
  • Made in the USA

 IMG_7152

They’ve got a wonderful new campaign called #NeverAny – Éclair Naturals promises #neverany harmful ingredients, gluten, soy, or GMOs. Watching their video, I was shocked to learn about some of the ingredients that are normally found in body care products. Thank goodness Éclair Naturals is committed to safe ingredients! Watch the full video here: http://eclairnaturals.com/neverany/

What’s your #NeverAny? – Share yours in the comments! Here’s mine:

IMG_6601

Éclair Naturals is ready to for spring with one of my favorite scents – lavender. Their Balancing Shampoo/Conditioner is for dry, flaky or itchy scalps and features a relaxing Tea Tree & Lavender scent. Combine that with the French Lavender Handsoap and Dead Sea Salt Scrub – let’s just say that I’m in heaven. It feels like a spa experience for the body and senses. Perhaps the most relaxing part is that I know the ingredients will keep me safe.
IMG_5662

Eclair Naturals products is super budget friendly. I recently purchased several bottles of lotion on sale at target.com for less than $6.50 each. You can also find them at Rite Aid, Safeway, ShopRite, Stop&Shop, and directly on www.eclairnaturals.com.

GIVEAWAY! One lucky winner will receive a bundle of lavender products from Éclair Naturals! Enter via the rafflecopter link below. Continental US residents only. Ends Thursday May 25th 11:59pm EST.

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

BONUS GIVEAWAY – Visit my Instagram – a second winner will be chosen there!

 

Disclaimer: I received samples of these products, but I was not paid to write this review. All opinions are my own, and I only recommend products that I, myself, use and love.

1-2-3 Gluten Free Mixes Review & Giveaway

1-2-3 Gluten Free is a company that truly goes the distance and I LOVE IT. They make some of the most fabulous gluten free baking mixes on the market, and you simply must go out and try their products now.

fullsizerender3

Great facts about 1-2-3 Gluten Free:

  • Dedicated gluten free/allergen-free facility – no gluten, dairy/casein, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, eggs, and sesame
  • Certified Gluten Free
  • GMO Free
  • Certified Kosher
  • Produced in the USA
  • Many products are fortified with extra vitamins
  • No artificial flavors or colors
  • Established by a woman who was diagnosed with Celiac Disease over 15 years ago. Her nieces and a nephew were also diagnosed, and she was determined to create amazing gluten free versions of favorite foods to share with her family.
  • Donates to Celiac Disease, Autism and food allergy research (LOVE!!!)

You’ll find mixes for:

  • Biscuits
  • Pan Bars
  • Rolls
  • Buckwheat Pancakes
  • Lemon Pound Cake (sugar free variation available)
  • Brownies
  • Muffins/Quick breads
  • Chocolate Bundt Pound Cake (sugar free variation available)
  • Sugar Cookies
  • Yellow Cake
  • Corn Bread
  • Devils Food Chocolate Cake
  • Multi-purpose Flour

On their website there is a list of dozens upon dozens of different recipes that can be made with their mixes. Everything from carrot cake to pie crust to wrapped gouda appetizers. You’d have to buy all of their products ten times in order to take advantage of their versatility. I would seriously never get tired of 1-2-3 Gluten Free.

I recently had the opportunity to sample several products, and I was super impressed. I used the recipe for Pumpkin Bars using their Pan Bar mix, and it resulted in one of the best fluffy cake textures that I have ever found from a gluten free mix – so light and fluffy! The perfect crumb. It freezes super well and maintains its’ perfection once it is defrosted.

img_6020

I also made Pumpkin Pancakes using their Allie’s Awesome Buckwheat Pancake Mix (I’m on a pumpkin kick, anticipating the start of fall and the approaching cool weather). Though I may add a touch of cinnamon and nutmeg to my next batch, I loved everything about the pancakes, particular the texture and how well they formed. They came out perfect every time – look at how beautiful these pancakes are! Perfect with a bit of grass fed butter or maple syrup. As a bonus, this mix is also fortified with B vitamins, iron and calcium, which is important because many of us who are diagnosed with Celiac Disease often have nutrient deficiencies.

img_6026

All in all, I cannot recommend 1-2-3 Gluten Free more highly. I urge you to support this fabulous company and start your fall baking season off right!

For more information, a store locator or to purchase online visit www.123glutenfree.com.

Special Discount – my readers get 10% orders of $20+ when you order from 123glutenfree.com. Use code “Jessica” at checkout. This promo code will be good for the month of September.

GIVEAWAY! Two lucky winners will receive selections of 1-2-3 Gluten Free mixes! Enter via the rafflecopter link below. Continental US only. Giveaway ends Friday September 23rd at 11:59pm EST.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Disclaimer: I received samples of these products, but I was not paid to write this review. All opinions are my own, and I only recommend products that I, myself, use and love.

Tiny B Chocolate Review

I love specialty made chocolate, and Tiny B Chocolate is no exception. Hand made in San Francisco with local ingredients, these brigadeiros are a well-loved Brazilian treat. Soft and creamy bites of chocolate, they come in the most beautiful boxes and make the perfect gift for a loved one (or yourself!).

IMG_9091

I love supporting small businesses, especially businesses that are started by couples. Tiny B Chocolate launched out of a love story between Renata, a Brazilian chocolatier, and Andrei, a San Francisco tech entrepreneur. They fell in love, got married, and their shared creativity sparked into a delicious adventure. They believe in “the sweetness of connecting”. My box came with a mini box that I was not allowed to eat myself. – “Share this box with someone you want to connect to: a dear friend, your partner, a coworker having a tough day…” What a sweet idea! (pun intended)IMG_9082

Brigadeiro flavors include:

  • Coconut and Cream
  • Milk Chocolate
  • Dark Chocolate
  • Dark Chocolate and Almond
  • Dark Chocolate and Pistachio
  • Dark Chocolate Mint
  • Brazilian Coffee and Chocolate
  • Passion Fruit and White Chocolate Curls
  • Raspberry and White Chocolate
  • Spicy Dark Chocolate

IMG_9101(1)

The website says that the chocolates remain fresh for three weeks at room temperature or for three months when refrigerated – give me a break, these chocolates are so tasty I had a hard time making them last three days! Every flavor was too delicious, and I’m not exaggerating when I say that I could not stop eating them.

With a variety of beautiful hand crafted packaging, Tiny B Chocolate offers personalized business gift packaging as well as beautiful boxes that are perfect for thank yous, congratulations, birthday wishes, anniversaries, and party/wedding favors.

FullSizeRender(2)

An important allergen statement from Tiny B Chocolate:

“We use 100% gluten-free ingredients and we manufacture our brigadeiros on dedicated, gluten-free machinery. Our ingredients are sealed and protected from cross contamination, however, the facility we used is shared, so there are ingredients that contain gluten in the same area.”

They also continually seek out feedback from bloggers and members of the Celiac community. So far they have received wonderful feedback (from myself included).

For more information and to order visit www.tinybchocolate.com

 

Disclaimer: I received samples of these products, but I was not paid to write this review. All opinions are my own, and I only recommend products that I, myself, use and love.

Eclair Naturals Review & Giveaway

A question I get asked a lot – “Why do I need gluten free skin care products? I don’t eat my shampoo or lotion.”

Well, actually you might. Have you been in the shower and found that a drop of soap, facial wash or shampoo trickled down your face towards your mouth? Or do you put on hand lotion only later to eat an apple? Let’s not forget our Celiac/GF friends who have a skin sensitivity to gluten. There are so many ways that gluten can affect our lives and get into our systems that I’ve found it necessary for my skin products to be gluten free, as well as my food.

IMG_7147

That’s why I’m beyond thrilled to have discovered Éclair Naturals, who make some of the best and most allergen friendly personal care products on the market today. They are incredibly dedicated to the Celiac/gluten free community and are even partnering with well known Celiac advocate Jennifer Esposito. Who Éclair Naturals are:

  • Certified gluten free (tests to less than 5ppm)
  • 100% soy free
  • 100% vegan
  • Made with food grade ingredients
  • No animal testing/certified cruelty free
  • Non GMO
  • Handcrafted in small batches
  • Sustainably sourced and responsibly produced
  • Promotes no waste
  • Donates to charities
  • Made in the USA

And check out everything they DON’T use:

IMG_7152

They even have a handy chart explaining what their ingredients are and how they uniquely benefit the body.

FullSizeRender(1)

I am so in love. The second I opened their Shea Butter and Oatmeal Soap I was flooded with the most beautiful scent. The combination of coconut, oat, and brown sugar is one of my very favorite smells (it reminds me of a sweet almond scent) and I found myself thinking, “I could just eat this bar….”

IMG_7157

Another favorite product is the French Lavender All Over Lotion. I love the relaxing smell of lavender. It puts me right to sleep and helps ease headaches from long days. The lotion is super silky, and I will savor every last drop.
IMG_7155

The Mango Body Butter feels even more decadent. I love reading the ingredients list – shea butter, sunflower seed oil, sweet orange peel oil, honeysuckle flower extract, jojoba seed oil… “Deeply moisturizing balm of rich shea butter and jojoba oil melts into even the most dry, irritated skin, soothing and softening all day long.” I don’t know about you all, but between working at health clubs, riding the subway, cooking, and being a Celiac I wash my hands about a bajillion times a day. This body butter makes my hands feel so happy. It will surely be a staple in my home forever. I cannot recommend Eclair Naturals more highly.

You’ll be happy to learn that the entire line of Eclair Naturals products is super budget friendly. When purchasing directly from the Éclair Naturals website you’ll find that most of the products are in the $5-$10 range! (cue: happy dance)

IMG_7159

Find Éclair Naturals at Rite Aid (nation wide), HEB (select locations), www.target.com (early July) and on www.eclairnaturals.com.

GIVEAWAY! One lucky winner will receive a gift basket from Éclair Naturals! Wow – one of my favorite giveaway yet! Enter via the rafflecopter link below. Continental US residents only. Ends Friday July 22nd 11:59pm EST.

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

EN Gift Basket 1

Disclaimer: I received samples of these products, but I was not paid to write this review. All opinions are my own, and I only recommend products that I, myself, use and love.