Everyday more than 12 million Americans suffer from common food allergies, which can range in severity from mild to deadly. If you suffer from an allergy to one of these eight common foods - milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, soy or wheat - make these mouth-watering allergy-friendly foods (and even if you don't have an allergy, you will want to try these dishes!).
Allergy Diet Tips
If you think you may have a food allergy (or already know you do), here are some tips to keep you safe while eating your favorite foods.
Keep a food journal:
Write down everything you eat, noting foods that cause sensitivities. After eating, write down any symptoms you feel. Sometimes symptoms take a few days to show up, so the more information your journal has, the easier it will be for you to connect foods to symptoms.
Figuring out your allergies:
After you have kept a journal for a few weeks, begin eliminating foods from your diet that you think could be causing allergy symptoms. Take individual foods out of your diet for a few weeks – this is a type of elimination diet. Then slowly reintroduce foods, individually, and you will likely be able to determine which foods are causing symptoms. To be absolutely sure about particular foods, consult a doctor about allergy testing.
Avoiding common food allergens:
The best way to completely avoid food allergies is to prepare allergen free foods at home in a safe and organic way -- you know the foods that cause symptoms so you can keep them out of your diet. However, when you are dining out, you will need to let the chef know the foods to which you are allergic and be sure to inquire about the ingredients in already-prepared foods. Most restaurants can accommodate your allergy.
When preparing food at home, using non-allergen foods in place of allergen foods is a great way to enjoy your favorite recipes. Cooking Allergy Free
has a list of food allergy substitutions.
Allergy Free Recipes
Allergy Free Pancakes
Makes 12 pancakes
Safe for people with wheat, soy, dairy, eggs and refined sugar allergies.
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup quinoa flour
2 tablespoons tapioca flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup Splenda
2 tablespoon canola oil
1 cup egg substitute
6 tablespoon rice milk
6 tablespoons apple juice
Cinnamon as desired
1 teaspoon vanilla, if desired
1. Combine flours, baking powder and Splenda in a small bowl.
2. Combine oil, egg substitute, rice milk and apple juice in a large bowl. Mix dry ingredients into wet ingredients.
3. Ladle desired amount of batter onto a preheated griddle or pan and cook until bottom is golden, flip and cook until golden.
Allergy Free Beef Burgundy
Makes 4 servings
Safe for people with egg, fish, gluten, milk, peanut, shellfish, soy, tree nut and wheat allergies.
1 slice bacon
2 pounds beef sirloin, cubed
2 cups onion, chopped
4 carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoons brandy extract
3 cups red wine, Burgundy if available
1 1/2 cups gluten-free beef broth
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 pound mushrooms, sliced
2 cups small white pearl onions
2 tablespoons cornstarch, potato starch or other thickener
2 cups cooked, gluten-free pasta
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Cook bacon in a large pot over medium-high heat until crispy. Move bacon to paper towels to drain.
2. Using the same pot the bacon was cooked in, sauté beef and onions for 5 minutes. Mix in the carrots and garlic and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add in crumbled bacon, brandy extract, wine, broth, salt, pepper, tomato paste, bay leaves, thyme, mushrooms and onions, stirring to combine. Bring to a boil. Place lid on pot and simmer for 1 hour or until meat is tender.
3. Combine cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of water then mix into beef mixture. Cook, stirring well over medium heat until sauce is thick. Serve mixture spooned over cooked pasta.
Allergy Free Triple Decker Chocolate Cake
Makes 12 servings
Safe for people with egg, milk, peanut, soy and tree nut allergies.
1 3/8 cups cake flour
1 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoons salt
1/2 cups milk-free, soy-free margarine
1 3/8 cups sugar
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
5/8 cups water
3/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
3 tablespoons water
3 tablespoons oil
3 tablespoons baking powder
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease three 8-inch round cake pans.
2. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl. In a large bowl, beat together margarine and sugar until creamy.
3. Combine 3 tablespoons water with 3 tablespoons oil, and 2 tablespoons baking soda. Beat into sugar mixture. Mix in remaining ingredients (except flour mixture) and blend well.
3. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Divide batter evenly into three prepared pans. Bake 18 to 20 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes then take out of pan and cool completely on wire racks. Frost each layer and stack.
Safe for people with egg, milk, peanut, soy, tree nut and wheat allergies.
2 cups confectioners sugar
1/4 cups milk-free, soy-free margarine, melted
2 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Mix until smooth. Frost on cool cake.
For more information on allergies to food read:
Food allergies begin at birth
Celiac disease and gluten intolerance
The anti-inflammatory diet: Eating foods to heal your body