Sunday, March 15, 2015

Gluten-Free Lunch Ideas for Pre-schoolers

I am gearing up to my reflections on our personal full-day Kindergarten experience. I may wait until the end of the year, so I don't put the cart ahead of the horse, as I did in September. Lunches. Gluten-free in a room of 27, gluten-consuming 4 and 5-year olds!

Rylyn eats her lunch at a little table on her own to avoid crumb contamination with other students. Her table is still near enough to other students so that she is not by herself. We received back results from her annual January IgA test indicating her Celiac disease remains inactive!

Find below some lunches I have packed. Please keep in mind these are the best. The best for us is a full fridge with lunches prepared the night before in reusable containers. We have been guilty of the the last minute scramble too. Baggies help with that (although I wrestle with this strange fear of Rylyn sucking on the bags and suffocating, so I prefer the reusable containers). Forget taking a picture of those lunches, as we are shoving the lunch into the backpack as the bus is pulling up. If I ever have the time to do a photo, I will tribute a worst gluten-free lunch post too.

Water, squeezable apple sauce, homemade GF banana muffin, carrots, homemade dill dip, cheese and GF crackers

Water, squeezable apple sauce, GF turkey sandwich, pickles, cheese and GF oreo

Water, lettuce wraps with turkey and mustard, cheese, yogurt, Snapeas, GF M&M cookie

Water, grapes and all-fruit gummies, Snapeas, green peppers, homemade GF pizza
Unless designated "homemade" the item is either naturally gluten free, purchased from a local gluten free bakery or processed. I have noted GF where an item would normally contain gluten. The banana muffins I made and froze and the pizza was dinner leftovers. My children are not picky eaters, so these lunches would come home finished. I bake a couple times a month on Saturdays.

Snapea Crisps - We make label reading our business and Chris recently caught an anomaly on a bag of Snapea Crisps: a gluten free claim (which drew us to the product initially) and a "may contain wheat" claim on the same bag. We had not seen this on other bags. I, of course, wrote the company and was content with their reply. Mainly because the product is yummy and I didn't want to have to give it up on principle.

"Hello Kara Dalgleish,

Thank you for your interest in our products. Harvest Snaps are not made with any gluten ingredients – and they have never contained gluten ingredients. In the past we produced a wheat based product in our factory therefore we complied with FDA standards to make the claim “May contain Wheat or Produced in a factory with wheat”. Since December of 2014 – we discontinued production of any wheat based products in our factory. We apologize for any confusion this may have caused. Thanks for your support of the Harvest Snaps brand.


Calbee North America Support

Had the company attempted to maintain both claims it would have been goodbye Snapea Crisps. Since they have done away with gluten altogether on their production lines, we are happy to keep snacking.

By the way, packing lunches is a drag. I do an inner happy dance every night I get a "bye."