Gluten-Free Challenge: Eating Out and Catered Meals

Reader Contribution by Staff
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What can I say? The cook inside of me is excited about the short, two-day challenge presented by signing up to eat gluten-free this weekend. (Find out more about the gluten-free challenge and sign up to participate!) I’ve been inspired to look for ways to replace some of my typical meals with alternatives that fit the bill, including the replacement of my Sunday morning pancakes with Floriani corn cakes (substituting gluten-free oat flour for the wheat flour). Sounds like an improvement to me! 

Eating at home and cooking gluten-free recipes for myself is one thing, but I have a wedding event this weekend that creates an unexpected complication — a true challenge if you will. The dinner menu (Italian) will certainly feature a whole host of dishes that someone with a gluten intolerance would not be able to eat — which for this weekend means I can’t eat them either. It didn’t really hit me until I committed to this challenge, but most events do not cater towards food allergies. A gluten-intolerant eater has no choice: The wedding cake is off-limits, along with the lasagna, garlic bread and spaghetti.  

If you are gluten intolerant, what advice can you share for dealing with meals at events or restaurants that are not compliant with your diet restrictions? Do you bring your own food? Eat a meal ahead of time? Or do you scrounge what you can that appears to be “safe”? Share your tips with me below!  

For a source of places to eat out and catering companies who work to provide gluten-free options, check out the Gluten-Free Registry online. 

Jennifer Kongsis the Managing Editor at MOTHER EARTH NEWS magazine. When she’s not working at the magazine, she’s likely working in her garden, on the local running trails or in her kitchen instead. You can find Jennifer on Twitteror .

Photo Credit: Fotolia/carroteater