Handling the Holidays Gluten-Free

Before you know it, the holidays will be upon us. Holidays can be a challenge for those of us who are gluten free or have other food allergies, so I’d like to share a few tips that help me to have a happy, healthy, and balanced holiday season.

Gluten-Free Tips for the Holidays

1. Choose your traditional favorites.

We all have traditional holiday recipes that we loved before going gluten free. You do not have to give them up. You may have to do a bit of research to learn how to tweak them, so it’s not a good idea to wait until the night before to find a gluten-free turkey gravy that comes close to Granny’s. For me, dressing (or stuffing) has always been the quintessential Thanksgiving dish. Thanksgiving just doesn’t work without it. So where ever I go, you know I’ll be bringing this Gluten-Free Stuffing along to share.

2. Find a great dessert.

There’s nothing more frustrating than looking at a holiday dessert table and knowing that there’s nothing that you can enjoy. Find a holiday dessert that looks festive and that is naturally gluten-free like my mom’s Berries on a Cloud (see photo at top of post). It’s a crowd-pleaser! You may want to check out the fabulous dessert archive All Gluten-Free Desserts All the Time. Or try one of these from The Balanced Platter:

3. Educate your friends and family.

If you are new to eating gluten-free, your loved ones may not yet understand how to prepare food that you can eat safely. Here are the first posts in two of my favorite series on this topic.

4. Keep perspective.

As we get closer and closer to holiday celebrations, our healthy intentions tend to be pushed to the bottom of the priority list. Gift giving, potluck prepping, decorating, and party planning sap our energy leaving us questioning the purpose of our efforts. It’s important to keep a healthy perspective in order to be the best you that you can be for yourself and your loved ones.

  • Start each day with a healthy breakfast. A power smoothie is quick way to get your nutrients, and you can even drink it on the go.
  • Take time to exercise. You’ll feel happier, healthier, and it will clear your mind of your growing to-do list.
  • Simplify. We tend to get carried away with ideas that get grander by the moment. Focus on what’s important and pare down.
  • End your day with an attitude of gratitude. Reflecting on the purpose of your holiday preparations helps to keep perspective and thankfulness.

May your holidays be happy, healthy, and balanced!

What tips do you have for handling the holidays gluten-free?

Heather BW 150x150

Heather is a kindergarten teacher by day and a fitness instructor and blogger by night. She writes Gluten-Free Cat and writes about healthy, gluten-free living and shares gluten-free, vegan, and raw recipes, product reviews, and restaurant reviews on her blog. You can connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.

Read all of Heather’s posts here.

4 Responses to Handling the Holidays Gluten-Free

  • Terrific post, Heather, and what a wonderful surprise to see my All Gluten-Free Desserts site mentioned and my They Just Don’t Understand series shared as well! Thank you so much! Now I’m off to check out some of these links I’m not familiar with. ;-)

    Will share on Facebook! :-)


  • Thanks for sharing these great tips Heather =) I especially like the one about keeping perspective – that can be a tough one during the holidays (but I think the most important one).


  • Great tips, Heather! I’ve definitely had that sinking feeling of looking at a Thanksgiving spread and realizing there was hardly a thing I could eat. (And I didn’t have time to cook because I flew in the night before.) Will try to plan ahead a little more this year, and have a power breakfast beforehand! ;-)


  • Donia says:

    Is the recipe for the first image posted? That cake with strawberry topping looks awesome!


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