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Everything you need to know to have a gluten-free Thanksgiving

I am a published writer & gluten-free junky who loves cooking, giving back and raising awareness on the #1 gluten-free giveaway site, Glutenfreefrenzy.com.

A holiday dedicated to food? That can seem overwhelming for those who must live gluten-free. With our tips and tricks, your Thanksgiving dinner will be a delightful one to remember!

Plan ahead

Making sure that you have planned ahead will ensure the smoothest gluten-free dinner possible. I love this Thanksgiving checklist that lays out your duties from days before to what is needed the day of. Know that no matter how far you plan ahead, with just a little prep, you can have an unforgettable gluten-free Thanksgiving.

Remember hidden gluten

In addition to the obvious rolls, pie crusts and stuffing, gluten likes to lurk in some of your favorite Thanksgiving dishes. Chicken broth, both what is used for cooking and what is added to many turkeys often contains gluten. Make sure to always check with companies on the gluten-free status of their turkeys before purchasing one. Cream soups and fried onions contain gluten and are often used in classic turkey day dishes such as green bean casserole. Find a gluten-free version of cream of mushroom soup such as Pacific brand. It is also easy to make gluten-free fried onions from scratch at home with just a little extra effort. Lastly, make sure that the gravy is being thickened with cornstarch or gluten-free all-purpose flour rather than traditional flour.

Make food fun

Make a themed breakfast for the kiddos that will help hold them over until appetizers are put out. We couldn't resist this adorable gluten-free turkey shaped pancake with apple feathers.

Photo credit: Gluten free frenzy

These apple turkeys also give kids a fun activity while providing them with a snack. Just make sure to use gluten-free cereal, candies and marshmallows for decorating.

Making handprint turkeys are another great activity that the kids will enjoy and they become a great keepsake for the parents as they keep them each year and see just how much their little hands have grown.

It's not all about food

These free printable placemats can easily be laminated and used from year to year. It is fun for the kids to color on their placemat at dinner, just make sure to use washable markers or crayons.

Start the tradition of having each person at the table say something they are thankful for before you start eating. This is a great way to remember what Thanksgiving should really be about, giving thanks.

Be prepared

Gluten Free Labels is an amazing company that creates picks, labels and stickers that say gluten-free so you can even have your dishes labeled if you can't do an entirely gluten-free Thanksgiving. These also work great if you will be taking some dishes to another person's home. I recommend labeling the dish and the serving spoon.

Remember, you are so much more than your dietary restrictions. Mingle, laugh and enjoy this holiday as you surround yourself with people that make you happy. Also, don't forget to be thankful this Thanksgiving.

In the video below you will find more ideas including our favorite Thanksgiving day products to make your gluten-free dinner perfect.

Do you need a full gluten-free menu to get you started? Check out this Thanksgiving day menu that we put together which includes appetizers, dinner and dessert.

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