Gluten Free Kitchen Essentials
Good news – it is possible for gluten-free and gluten foods to live in harmony in the same kitchen!
Let us help make sharing a kitchen easier with our Gluten Free Kitchen Essentials. First step to creating a gluten-free kitchen, is to clean it out! Yes, even if you are going to put some items back.
A clean, gluten free kitchen is a happy kitchen 🙂
Understand the Needs of Celiac Disease
CD is an autoimmune disease, with the ingestion of gluten being a trigger for attacks to the small intestine called villi. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye and other derivatives.
It is extremely important to make sure the people you live with understand what Celiac Disease is and what the health consequences will be for the person with celiac disease if they accidentally consume gluten.
Everyone needs to take responsibility in following the kitchen rules and being vocal if they make a mistake or think they’ve made a mistake. No risks should be taken, because it is never just a little, and it is not okay to “just try it”.
Isolate the Gluten
A hybrid gluten-free and gluten kitchen is not as simple as buying two boxes of pasta, one gluten-free and one not. You will need to identify gluten-containing ingredients in your kitchen and isolate them away from everything gluten free. Many dry and processed goods have gluten. Look closely at your dry storage, ingredient labels and separate items.
This will ensure you can prepare gluten-free foods without worrying about ingredient mixups or cross contamination.
It is also important to separate items in pantries, cupboards and walk-ins.
Dedicated to Gluten Free
Dedicated cooking equipment and kitchen utensils for preparing only gluten-free foods is crucial for maintaining a gluten free diet.
Colour coded kitchen utensil kits including tongs, spatulas, grill brushes, whisks, etc. are an easy way to make sure that kitchen tools are ready for use and kept gluten free.
In addition to kitchen utensils, one of the best investments for every Celiac is their own personal toaster oven. It is recommended to have a gluten free specific toaster. Take it one useful step further and get a toaster oven that provides you a safe space to cook all oven meals and make toast too!
Yes, this disease is officially becoming expensive for new Celiacs. Knowing many of the things in your kitchen may need replaced is heart breaking.
Focus on investing in items that will provide YEARS of use. Spend the extra few dollars for scratch resistant pots & pans or those non-absorbent silicon baking mats, it is honestly worth it.
You’re going through a lot, at least love the things you have for this big lifestyle change!
Where the Risks Lie
Consider everything food touches, from storage to cooking to cleaning, as possible sources of cross-contact, and make sure everyone in the house understands where the risks lie, and how.
Common gluten risk areas include:
- Cutting boards
- Sponges/dishrags/hand towels
Setup a system to minimize all risk. There is no one size fits all solution and it will take some trial and error before learning what works best for your home. Clearly mark gluten free items that are off limits to the gluten eaters.
We recommend keeping all gluten-free items on the top shelves to minimize crumb exposure.
Say Goodbye to Gluten Flours
Don’t believe anyone that tells you keeping gluten flours is possible. It is not. Instate an outright ban on wheat flour, even if you have opted to have a hybrid gluten-free and gluten kitchen.
The flour particles are impossible to remove from your kitchen quickly & easily, especially with regular use. Flour particles can remain airborne for 12-24 hours and inhaling airborne gluten can cause people with celiac disease to become sick.
When necessary to use flours, stick to gluten free flours. Trust us, just say goodbye to gluten flours. Your health will thank you.
Frequently Asked Questions about Shared Kitchens
Yes, you need a separate toaster for gluten free.
Kitchens should have two completely separate prep areas, one for gluten-free and one for regular products. Have you ever tried to thoroughly clean the inside of a toaster? Not possible!
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Adjusting to a gluten free diet is a life change, and it will be difficult. The most important thing is to have an open conversation and decide together what is practical for your needs and home, there is no one size fits all. Having some rules and boundaries is important for every home with a shared kitchen.
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*Reminder - We are not health professionals. We are just individuals like you wanting to learn about Celiac Disease and sharing our research.