Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Whatever Wednesday: Dairy Free

I have been meaning to do a post like this on my personal life blog for a while now. My son is allergic to dairy products. We found out when he was around 4 or 5 months old (I can never keep up with dates). I was nursing him, so I had to cut all dairy and soy out of my diet. At the time, I was overwhelmed with all of it but was also willing to do anything to make him feel better and help improve his eczema. Now, we have introduced soy to him and he is doing great with it...Praise the Lord. However, we tried him on dairy when he was a year old and it was not good. He will be 2 in May and I am afraid to say that it will be a while before he grows out of his dairy allergy (if at all).

Well, recently a friend of mine found out that she has to go on a dairy free diet because of her sweet baby girl. So, that is the main reason that I am doing this post. I wanted to give her some information on cooking and eating out...dairy free. I figure I might as well post it for everyone just in case anyone else is going through this. Let me know if you have any questions about any other items or things. I might know the answer and just didn't post it on here. However, I might not know the answer but would be HAPPY to research it for you. It can be overwhelming at first.

Cooking meals at home is very easy. EVOO, soy milk, and Smart Balance Light (w/ EVOO or flaxseed) will become your friends. You can make just about any recipe with these three ingredients (unless it is something that contains cheese or creamed soups). I put soy milk in a lot of stuff from pancakes to mashed potatoes and have great results with it! Watch out for chicken and beef bouillon cubes. They contain milk (whey). So, always use canned chicken or beef broth. You will get SO good at reading labels that you just have to look at the label for a couple of seconds check for dairy. The wonderful thing about labels now is that most of them announce in bold letters if there is dairy in them. However, you should always double check for "hidden" dairy ingredients. If I am making pasta or a chicken dish that contains cheese, I will just take out some pasta and chicken (before adding dairy item) and put a dairy free sauce with it to serve it to Kael.

Here is a wonderful little cheat sheet that lists all of the "hidden" dairy ingredients AND it prints out on a business card size so that you can carry it in your purse or pocket...awesome!

This is also another favorite website of mine for dairy free information and recipes. However, their list of restaurant items that are dairy free are NOT always correct. So, I always go to the individual restaurant's website to double check.

Dairy free grocery store list: (These are items that you can find in your normal grocery store. There is a LOT more...this is just a short list)
Smart Balance Light (either w/ olive oil or flaxseed)
Fleischmann's Light margarine sticks
Oreos : )
Saltine crackers (Most crackers don't have dairy in them unless they are some kind of cheese or butter crackers. Except goldfish...ALL flavors of goldfish contain dairy.)
Wheat thins
Graham crackers
Teddy Grams
Soy yogurt

Potato chips and pretzels of course (as long as they aren't cheese flavored)
Duncan Hines brand of cake/brownie mix/frostings (even buttercream)
Orville Redenbacher's Simply Salted microwave popcorn
Arnold's sandwich bread (I was so excited when I found this. It is only $2 compared to the $4 and $5 that I was spending at Earth Fare. Now, I make my own bread which is much cheaper, but Arnold's is nice to have as a back up.)
Ghirardelli dark and semi-sweet chocolate chips Also, they have dark chocolate candy bars and dark and semi-sweet baking bars that do not contain milk. This is their allergy list.

Dairy Free restaurant food list
(Of course, ordered with no cheese if that applies and this is also not a complete list)
McDonald's: Quarter pounder, Southern style chicken sandwich ordered on either a honey wheat roll or sesame bun ( I love honey wheat roll with this), NO fries
Wendy's: Chicken nuggets and fries!
Chick-fil-a: NO meat, but you can eat their fries
Burger King: Chicken fries, whopper, french fries
Subway: any regular sub without cheese
Taco Bell: Spicy chicken soft taco or any fresco menu item
Little Caesar's: You can actually eat there pizza dough and sauce so just order a pizza with only veggies and no cheese...ugh ; ). Also, you can eat the crazy bread ordered with NO parmesan.
Zaxby's: fries
Red Robin: Burger and fries
This is not a good choice : ). You can eat a burger without the bun and no fries.
Barberito's (This is for you, Faith. I asked the Osbolt's.): You can totally eat a burrito just no cheese or dressing on it.
Hardee's: You can have grilled chicken or burger patty on a honey wheat bun.
Panera: Most of their sandwich bread (wheat, white) is dairy free so you can order a sandwich with no cheese.

Well, this is all for now. I will post more in the comments as I think of things. Let me know if anyone has specific restaurants, food items, etc. that you are wondering about!!


carlyn said...

a few more things i thought of:
watch the labels on meats!! lunch meats commonly contain milk. that was one lesson i learned the hard way. so if you get your meat at a deli ask to read the ingredients before you get them to slice any up. and rice milk and goats milk also work great for cooking if someone has to cut out soy too. read the labels on everything before you put it in your grocery cart and then again before you eat it at home. Amy's has a vegan pizza that can be found at Kroger that is wonderful and great for a quick meal. avocados are a great replacement for cheese on a sandwich or sour cream on Mexican food. watch all breads, a lot have dairy. i mainly used wraps or homemade bread for sandwiches. there are several brownie mixes that don't contain dairy and a few brands of chocolate chips as well. so you don't have to give up chocolate entirely. also you can make any from scratch recipes that start with cocoa, like chocolate oatmeal no bakes. just use the smart balance as your butter and one of the milk substitutes. for dinner, just think separates. example: chicken breast, steamed broccoli, rice. or pork chops, salad, roasted potatoes. you will have a lot more options with separates than trying to find casserole or one dish type dishes with out dairy. and don't forget to watch our for seasonings, a lot of seasoning have dairy, like taco seasoning. but you can always just look up recipes on the internet and make you own seasoning mixes.

beckyquilts said...

When I was a child, my mom had to read every label for me. I was allergic to wheat, eggs and milk! I was allowed to have powdered milk, for whatever I was allergic to was removed by powdering. It's not so bad when nice and cold. Anyway, here is a cake recipe that I have always made, regardless of allergies, because it just tastes fabulous. It is milk and egg free, the soda and vinegar make it rise. If you keep the basic ingredients on hand, you can bake up a cake or cupcakes in a jiffy! makes a 8" cake; makes a 13x9 cake. Hope you try them! Becky

Talia said...

I will ABSOLUTELY try them, Becky!! I have actually been able to get away pretty easily lately with Kael's milk allergy because he has been too young to realize that he is getting something different than us. Now, he is really starting to get it and I need to start being a good dairy free mom ; ). I need to have cupcakes and cookies on hand all the time to take with us to parties and such so he doesn't feel left out. Thanks a ton! Thanks to fleischmanns butter...cookies are pretty easy!

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