Friday, February 6, 2015

Valentine’s Day, the Gluten-free Way

Valentine’s Day is known for its sweet treats, fine dining and memorable gifts. Being a gluten-free soul, however, can make February 14 more frustrating than fun. You know what I’m talking about! Too often, “Oh, these chocolates look delicious!” can quickly turn into “Wait, what’s in these chocolates?” Or, “I made reservations at that fancy place we’ve been wanting to try!” turns into “Oh no – do they have gluten-free things on the menu?!”

But, let’s take a collective breath. Our Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be compromised by gluten-free living! Quite the opposite. It turns out there are plenty of ways folks like us can make a gluten-free Valentine’s Day a seamless and fun time. Did you know that almost all Dove chocolate is gluten-free? So are Junior Mints (the heart-shaped ones, of course!), Hershey’s Kisses and Sweethearts Conversation Hearts (you’ve seen these: “Kiss Me”; “Be Mine”). That certainly opens up some possibilities for us!

But that’s not it. Common sense tells us to call ahead before we dive into those dinner reservations, of course, but what about just foregoing the whole production of going out, in favor of making a romantic meal at home? You’ll be the fool-proof chef charge of making sure everything is to your specifications. And gluten-free appetizer, main course and dessert recipes are also so easy to come by these days – plus we’ll be able to slip into your sweat pants much more quickly afterwards!

When it comes to gifts, the usual methods apply: label watching and thinking outside the box, to be sure. But what matters most is the thought put into it! With a little effort and research, our gluten-free Valentines will be smiling until next February.

Okay, so the candy worked out; dinner was a romantic breeze; and the gift-giving was seamless. Time to seal it all up with a kiss or two, right? Wrong! If you’re gluten intolerant and you lock lips with someone who just ate a gluten dish, drank a beer or is wearing cosmetics with gluten in them, your night could end on a bad note! So, remember to floss and brush (or have your Valentine brush) with gluten-free toothpaste before planting one on him or her.

Want to learn more about making your gluten-free Valentine’s Day memorable for something other than hassle? Check out these links. More ideas for gluten-free candy, meals, gifts and smooching await!

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