Raising kids with food allergies presents unique challenges, especially in social situations. Below are allergy-friendly, kid-friendly party recipes that are dairy-free, gluten-free, and soy-free!
Toodle has about 10 food allergies, four fewer than when she was first diagnosed. Because she has an autoimmune disease, we follow a specific protocol. Coincidentally, her food allergies just happen to match up with the guidelines for the dietary program we follow. At first, I was convinced we would all starve, never enjoy a social gathering again, and basically die in a cave somewhere with our leftover chicken and tree bark. However, after about a year, we found our culinary chops.
To make matters worse, Toodle (and now Twinkle, too) has the audacity to grow up and have a social circle of her own. The days are sometimes long, but holy cow, are the years short. Toodle and Twinkle are out and about in the world with their dietary restrictions in tow. Jesus, please be a fence.
K-Hubs and I can’t exactly follow them everywhere with a bunsen burner in tow, sit obscurely in a corner, and whip up something delicious in thirty minutes or less. Whatever are parents to do?
I’m not going to lie. I want the girls to fit in AND have something to enjoy while the other kids eat cake and ice cream. Necessity is the mother of invention, so I turned the kitchen into a lab and began creating recipes for treats they can take to parties and play dates. So far, the concoctions have been a hit. Toodle and Twinkle don’t seem to mind if their treats are different so long as they have something to enjoy, too.
The biggest challenge? Refrigeration. Our paleo-inspsired diet doesn’t contain many shelf-stable items. So we get creative, and, when applicable, the girls take little insulated lunch bags along.
Now that party foods have been addressed, their girls’ biggest conundrum is the lack of infants in our house. Toodle and Twinkle periodically lobby for a baby brother. Jesus, please also be a fence around our sanity every time they asks, “Can we have a brother, Mom and Dad?”
But back to the food. Below I have compiled recipes that are helpful for us and may be for you as well! Like, basically, if the only disappointment in the girls’ lives right now is a lack of brothers, I call it a win.
Food allergies are a whole thing, Spiriteds. In solidarity, I say, YOU got this!
CREAMY PALEO FUDGE
I’m telling you, Creamy Paleo Fudge is a huge hit. And it’s relatively easy to make. No baking required, just refrigeration. This recipe is made with unsweetened cacao powder and either honey or agave nectar (it’s your choice). It starts to soften quickly, however it’s tasty enough you’ll have it gone before it completely melts!
–> Click for Creamy Paleo Fudge
DAIRY-FREE SOY-FREE CHOCOLATE BARS
We have a heart mold for shaping these treats. However, you can use whatever mold, including ice cube trays, you want. Dairy-Free Soy-Free Chocolate Bars use few ingredients and travel nicely. First, whisk everything together (whisk a little longer than you think is necessary to ensure the cacao powder and cinnamon blend evenly). Then pour into the mold of your choice. These also soften quickly but refrigerate easily and seem to do well in a small lunch cooler with a freezer pack.
–> Click for Dairy-Free Soy-Free Chocolate Bars
AGAVE-INFUSED HOMEMADE LEMONADE
Toodle wanted to host a few friends for an end-of-school-year party. We were worried about finding recipes that would be tasty for the kids who aren’t used to eating the way we do but would also meet Toodle’s strict dietary requirements. While we try to minimize the amount of sugar she consumes, a party is a party. So we decided to let up on the sweets restriction that day. The kids LOVED Agave-Infused Lemonade and asked for more. We also had homemade popsicles (similar to Vegan Strawberry Cherry Popsicles) that didn’t contain dyes or gluten, soy, and dairy. The kids absolutely did not notice that we served anything “different” than they had had at other parties. And that felt like a major win for us.
–> Click for Agave-Infused Homemade Lemonade
VEGAN STRAWBERRY CHERRY POPSICLES
These Vegan Strawberry Cherry Popsicles were a delightful discovery. Inspired by a party we hosted for Toodle and her classmates, we decided to formalize our off-the-cuff recipe into something everyone could enjoy!
–> Click for Vegan Strawberry Cherry Popsicles
PALEO CHOCOLATE MUG CAKE
This recipe is a HUGE win in our house! We made several batches to get just the right amount of flavor. And now our family enjoys Paleo Chocolate Mug Cake on the regular. The recipe is set up for single servings, so you can make as many or as few batches as you’d like. And for older kids, making Paleo Chocolate Mug Cake would be a festive party activity. The flavor is so out of this world, no one will know it’s paleo!
–> Click for Paleo Chocolate Mug Cake
NO-BAKE CHOCOLATE ALMOND BUTTER TRUFFLES
Right along with Paleo Chocolate Mug Cake, No-Bake Chocolate Almond Butter Truffles are a recipe kids and adults can enjoy together! And this might be one of my personal favorites, if only because I feel so fancy when I eat truffles. Whatever, man. I’m usually wearing “activewear” pants with my hair in a ponytail. So if sinking one’s teeth into this delightful dessert is the equivalent of culinary escapism, I say GO FOR IT! These chocolatey truffles need to be kept refrigerated, so they work best for parties you host or when traveling short distances. But, I’m telling you, no one will know these are allergen-friendly. Serve up and ENJOY!
–> Click for No-Bake Chocolate Almond Butter Truffles
DAIRY-FREE BLUEBERRY POPSICLES
Where do I even go with this one? Dairy-Free Blueberry Popsicles are perfect for kids who are a little tired of the standard cherry, strawberry, grape, and raspberry popsicles. And if your child’s birthday happens to be on September 2nd, then so much the better because that day also happens to be National Blueberry Popsicle Day. Seriously. Blueberry popsicles get their own day. And when they taste as good as they do, why shouldn’t they?
–> Click for Dairy-Free Blueberry Popsicles
It’s one recipe at a time. Check back often for more kid-friendly, allergy-friendly recipes!