Since Thanksgiving has snuck up on me this year, well I have been a bit preoccupied with other nonsense as you all know, I didn’t get to post all the wonderful recipes I had planned for you. I will get to that in a second but first I want to take this opportunity to be thankful for some things that all celiacs can take part in…

1.) Thankful that I can still drink WINE!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (not too much but its still an option!)

2.) Thankful for the people who GET IT!

3.) Thankful for the years I had to taste everything and then some.  Even though there was illness I am thankful for having that opportunity to once eat with freedom.

4.) Thankful for the friends and family who support me on even my worst days.  There aren’t many, but, be grateful for even the ones you do have.

5.) Thankful for the 300,000 doctor who FINALLY figured out that Celiac was with me.

6.) Thankful to the bloggers and celiac community who endlessly try to make things better for each other.

7.)  Thankful for my remaining troop Mr. Franklyn Delanore Beans.  Always there for a kiss and to clean up any remains of anything I bake (good or not).

8.)  WINE, again.

9.) Thankful that with the recent events my life has opened up so I can move full steam ahead on making things better for all of us with this awful disease.

10.)  Thankful for the wonderful things I CAN still eat and the wonderful things I can make.

11.) Thankful for YOU!  Who have supported me and support each other on this confusing, scary, sometimes very lonely road.  This is and will always be a place where everyone is welcome to share and feel HEARD!

12.)  Wine,  hehe.

Now a few tips for Thanksgiving just to be safe:

  • Don’t eat anything that you don’t trust.  AND don’t feel bad about it.  Its ok to say no thanks.  Remember its you who will suffer later.
  • Cheating is NOT an option. Just don’t do it.  FACT- 1/8th of a teaspoon can damage the villi around the small intestine and make you sick
  • If you are the one cooking be sure that your turkey is gluten free.  I know its meat but guess what?????  Wonderful companies inject stock which has gluten and other unsavory things.
  • If you are a guest somewhere eat something safe at home first so you are not ravenous and make poor choices.
  • As always, if someone asks why you are not eating take the opportunity to educate.

If you are the chef or the guest I have a scrumptious GRAIN FREE, GLUTEN FREE, SOY FREE, REFINED SUGAR FREE, VEGAN, NUT FREE (optional), GREAT TASTING, YUMMY treat for you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I made this recently and ate the entire thing myself.  Can sprinkle some  powdered sugar over (i make my own out of beet sugar) or toast it and add some honey or dairy free butter like earth balance! YUMMMMMMMMMMM!!!!!!!!!

Pumpkin (or) Sweet Potato Loaf

PreHeat Oven to 330 Degrees
Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup Quinoa flour  (a seed not a grain)
  • 1/2 cup Amarath flour
  • 1/4 cup Buckwheat flour
  • 3/4 cup Arrowroot Starch
  • 1/2 tsp Xanthan gum or flax seed alternative
  • 1 tsp Baking powder
  • 1 tsp Baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp Salt,  I use Himalayan Sea Salt  awesome!
  • 3/4 cup Maple sugar or palm sugar or brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla bean
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup Unsweetened Applesauce
  • 1/4 mashed very ripe Banana
  • 1/3 cup Grapeseed oil or olive oil or coconut
  • 1 cup Pumpkin or Mashed sweet potato
  • 1/2 cup Hemp milk or milk of choice- mixed with 1 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/2 cup chopped Pecans (optional)

Directions:

  1. Whisk together all dry ingredients
  2. Combine Hemp milk and apple cider vinegar and set aside
  3. In standing or hand mixer combine oil, applesauce, and banana until creamy
  4. Slowly add flour mixture a little at a time, alternating with the hemp milk mixture.  Always end with dry ingredients.
  5. Pour into a greased and floured loaf pan or a small /medium bundt pan and sprinkle top with chopped pecans
  6. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes
  7. When done toothpick should come out clean.  Let cool and sprinkle with powdered sugar (I make my own to avoid nasty confectioners sugar)

ENJOY warm or cooled for desert or anytime.  Even toast and add some dairy free gluten free ice cream!!!!!!!!!

I would have added a photo but ate it before I had a chance. SERIOUSLY!

Enjoy your Thanksgiving!!!!

~ Jennifer

This Post Has 43 Comments

  1. kathryn

    Thank you so much! Your list is perfect. And yes…wine…I am thankful for wine. The holidays can be hard with this ridiculous disease, and your blog helps a lot! Keep it up, and I wish you the best and a happy Thanksgiving!

  2. Katieb

    I was so thrilled to see you post about Grain Free! That’s where we are at and so far so good…beef roast for the main dish, almond flour herb biscuits , mashed broccoloflower with carrots, grain free pecan pie with honey as the sweetener and pumpkin pie with honey as the sweetener ………oh yes, And WIne!!! Thank GOD for wine ;). Our daughter has to work Black Friday and doesn’t have a car that will even make it home, so she is going to live dangerously making a feast out of packaged GF foods. She is nervous about the ensuing migraine and so are we….but she is at the age where she has to learn how to manage her diet and her body. I have a feeling it will be a learning experience. At least her boyfriend is amazing and 100% on board, and so will facilitate the green juice cleanse for the 2 days after her Thanksgiving that will help her body get over the insult of packaged GF foods and refined sugars! Happy GF Grain Free Thanksgiving!

      1. Katieb

        Sure! 3 cups almond flour, 1/2 cup parm or cheddar cheese, 1/4 C parsley, 1 tsp oregano, 1/2 tsp thyme, 1/4 tsp dried basil, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp baking soda, 3 eggs, 1 cup yogurt, 2 cloves garlic, 1 small finely diced onion. Mix all ingredients together and bake by the 2 tablespoon heap on parchment paper lined sheet at 325 for 15-18 minutes. I use frsh herbs, so if you do you should increase the amounts.

        And my daughter suffered for an entire week from her packaged GF food Thanksgiving feast! She now has a much better understanding of why SCD works so well for her and said she won’t be making that mistake again anytime soon—-she said it was 100% NOT worth it as she started feeling the effects within an hour of eating. It’s really sad how much gluten is still allowed in those packaged foods :(. Also reading Jennifer’s post ‘Being back’ opened her eyes to the seriousness of living with this condition and just how serious we have to be with a strict diet.

      2. Patrycja

        Hi Natalie! Congrats on your dietary shift! Did your meal end up ok?Over the years my penrsoal TGiving feast has morphed dramatically. What started out as replacing traditional recipes, has now become more of a hodgepodge of just a random collection of favorite foods. This year the table was especially untraditional, but who cares we ate what we like to eat! We had:- Dilled Kale Chips (as a crunchy eat-while-you-wait snack)- Creamy coconut and bell pepper soup- The world’s largest California Salad (huge and dense, I can’t go without this thing)- Delicata squash fries- Carmelized Brussel Sprouts w/ red onion, garlic, and hemp seed- Seasonal mandarin granita I was going to make a pie from kabocha squash too, but having already made 2 of them last week (in a bout of overzealous holiday spirit) I decided to stick with just a nice and refreshing granita for dessert. After such a big meal, it proved perfect.

      3. Mac

        Thank you for all of the work on this website. My mom eonjys working on internet research and it’s really obvious why. Almost all learn all concerning the dynamic means you offer advantageous tactics on this website and in addition boost participation from some other people on that subject matter while our favorite girl is really becoming educated a whole lot. Have fun with the remaining portion of the year. You have been carrying out a great job.

  3. Amy

    Fellow celiac here; Happy Thanksgiving to you. Not to be Debbie Downer, but please be careful with the wine. It may not be gluten-free!! Why? you ask… Many wines are aged in oak barrels. Most oak barrels are sealed with a food-safe substance…in a lot of cases, WHEAT FLOUR PASTE. I have even heard of some barrel- and wine -makers sealing their barrels with rye (grain) ash paste; it apparently imparts a unique quality of flavor. If you must, go with the “un-oaked” types, generally fruity and aged and stored in stainless steel vats. Personally this was a real bummer, as I had cases and cases of my favorite oaked wines, now making great gifts. But I in fact have actually had reactions after drinking them. If you search for how wine barrels are made, you should find a video that demonstrates the process and the sealing at the end. I’ve seen it with my own eyes. And have had the headache and constipation to prove it. In some consolation, there’s lots of hard alcohol that is gluten-free…look up your favorite rum! :)

  4. Suzanne

    Bring on the wine! Thank YOU Jennifer, for all that you do and persevere through. You are an inspiration and teacher. Besides, I love your recipes, and this pumpkin loaf is now a new addition to our menu on Thanksgiving!! Happy Thanksgiving Jennifer!

  5. Happy Girlfriend

    Jennifer, your one of my favorite actresses. I’m really excited to see you have your own website supporting people with gluten intolerance. Needless to say I have celiac too. Plus a ton of ridiculous allergies! I’ll have to try this recipe too :-D

  6. Cath

    Happy Thanksgiving to you too Jennifer and to all of our American neighbours. I am a Canadian who was badly misdiagnosed BUT fortunate to be diagnosed with Celiac in the states.

    Celiac was killing me so for the 22nd Thanksgiving 2012, American and Canadian, I am thankful for my diagnosis and grateful for my healing body!

    I am also incredibly grateful to you, for your voice and believe it or not your disease. It just may light the way for so many:)

    God Bless you all and have a wonderful safe food Thanksgiving:)

  7. Terri

    Thanks so much for all you do. Our family will love this pumpkin/sweet potato loaf since this is perfect for thanksgiving. Looking forward to sneaking some next morning with coffee… if there is any left. :)

  8. Alyson

    Happy Thanksgiving to you, Jennifer! I’ve been cooking my own food all day so I can eat safely with my husband’s family tomorrow and my own on Friday, although my sisters do a great job cooking for me. Just had a second endoscopy after 8-9 months gluten free and there’s still damage. Not good. And I am sure there are some foods I’m having cross-reactivity to. But like you, I am grateful for all the years of eating anything and everything I wanted! Be we’ll!

  9. Alissa

    Hi Jennifer,
    A friend sent me a link to an article about your experience with celiac disease – I hadn’t known that you had celiac, too. I am glad to know that we have a very visible advocate for educating others about the disease and diet! Incidentally, I have been asked to help with an upcoming celiac research fundraiser and was wondering if I could chat (write?) more with you about it. (of course, I know you are busy, so I won’t take it personally if you decline.) Happy Thanksgiving – hope it is a good one! Thanks again for speaking out about this!

  10. Linda

    Diagnosed with Celiac in my 40′s, bone loss, hair loss, (etc losses), now, 15 yrs later, the pain and ‘losses’ are happening again. Adrenals are going crazy. So, Thanksgiving dinner is a joke. But I am with everyone else I’ve peeked at…THANK GOD FOR WINE!

    Jennifer, I have a fabulous flourless chocolate cake recipe made with beets, cayenne, egg, egg whites, sugar, bittersweet chocolate….sound like something you can do? I could LIVE ON IT!

    Also, Tinkyada pasta is the BEST! Just like the “real thing”, and it holds up to overcooking and reheating. God bless you big time, woman, for sharing what people have been laughing at for way too long!

    Linda

  11. Bethany Kirthi

    Thank you for all you do for the Celiac community. My 11 year old daughter was diagnosed 14 months ago, and as you know, the lack of information from the medical community is so frustrating. It’s great to have someone to listen to that is going through this and hearing what works and what doesn’t. Finding some yummy gf food to make is always a treat.

    Thanks again, hope you had a great holiday!

  12. BarbaraJean

    Jennifer, we have been missing you on Blue BloodS and just heard your interview today. We wondered what happened to you. I sent your site to a coworker of mine who is in his 70′s and has Celiac Disease. I have a daughter who is “sensitive”. By the way, my husband and I think you should get paid… is there anything we can do? Happy Thanksgiving!

  13. Kristy Swain

    Hi Jennifer, I just saw your special on Fox News. My husband actually called me into the room when he heard your story as he was flipping channels. I was amazed at how similar it was to my own story. So, as soon as it was over, I went to your website to learn more. I have a gluten intolerance and multiple other food allergies (soy, corn, peanuts, chicken, etc). I was so ill (brain fog, profound fatigue, etc) for several years. I had to quit work during that time. I finally got a diagnosis of food allergies after many wrong ones (as you describe). I am much better, but have many bad days – due to my body still recovering, accidentally eating something I shouldn’t even though I am very careful, something being mislabeled, etc. So, thank you for sharing openly, as I don’t know but one other person with these issues. It’s hard to really find people who get it and understand. So, many times I avoid the topic unless someone asks due to symptoms they are having – then I’m more than happy to help. Anyway, I’m babbling. I didn’t know how to reach you, as I saw no email address or anything. So, I hope you don’t mind the long comment. Your story just rang so true for me. I am glad you are reaching out to others and spreading the word. I haven’t discovered blogs by such people… I’d love to hear your recommendations for blogs written by people with similar issues. I do have a blog though… but it’s interior design related. Anyway, if you write back to comments as we do in the design blog world, I’d love to hear from you.

  14. Adam

    Not sure if this is the right place to comment, but I saw you on Fox news, I have Celiac, and have opinions and experiences to share but would like to do it in the correct place on your web site…(which is hard to navigate if you are a computer illiterate person such as myself). Can someone steer me in the right direction where I can simply post my history sans a video?

  15. Duane

    I’m very sorry to hear about your health, I can not begin to imagine what you are feeling. I do want you to know that your
    character on Blue Bloods is a tremendous loss for the network.
    How they are reacting towards is completely “STUPID” , they
    need to publicly apologize to you and compensate you for the lack of wisdom and insight.
    I will miss seeing on Blue Bloods! You and Danny are a great
    team!

    Miss Esposito I wish all the best and do hope to see back
    on the screen…

    Most Sincerely,
    Duane

  16. A. Orr

    Thank you Jennifer for all that you do! Just a gentle reminder on your “beet sugar” comment, please oh please be certain that is a Non-GMO or organic beet only and always…your tender intestine will thank you. :)

    1. Dayo

      Hey Joe Runner, My family and I will be tirvelang up from Florida to Louisville for Thanksgiving. We would love to run this 5 miler Thanksgiving morning. Is there a chance you could send me a copy of the registration? Thanks!

  17. Elle

    I just wanted to tell you how awesome I think you are for raising your voice for Celiac awareness. I saw the special on Fox Files last night and I feel A LOT like you do. I’m not sure if you have heard of “The Specific Carbohydrate Diet” – I have found it to be life saving. Eating gluten free was not enough for me. Keep trucking like you are! And oh yes, Wine!!!! It’s not SCD safe, but sometimes I need it.

  18. Michelle

    Hello Jennifer, Hope you are having a good holiday season and feeling better. I see you’re a fan of dogs and I was wondering have you heard of the gluten detecting trained dogs?

    http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/yourlife/pets/dogs/2011-01-11-pettalk11_ST_N.htm

    Hopefully that takes you to the article about Hollie Scott and her dog Elias. After watching your story on Fox I thought that might be something you could look into. I would love one for my self but don’t have the money for it. Thank you for all you do for Celiacs. If it wasn’t for your site I wouldn’t know alot about my disease. My doctor told me

    “There is no way to be SURE you have celiac, but if you feel better on a GF diet. By all means continue it..”

    So thanks for all your help. Have a Happy & Healthy Holiday!!!
    Much love,
    Mi

    1. Jennifer

      NOT TRUE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YOU NEED AN ENDOSCOPY!!!!!!!!!! If done correctly the doctor will take a piece of the small intestine and biopsy to see if the Villi is damaged. This is a must for all who believe they have CELIAC!!! Please head to another doctor.

      be Well
      Jennifer

      1. Michelle

        I did have the endo but that was after 5 months of no gluten and only 2 weeks back on it so the test was inconclusive…
        No proof one way or the other..
        He also said he didn’t take alot of biopsies because he thought I don’t have celiac, just paranoid.

        So he said at most I could be considered Gluten intolerant.
        I understand the anger at the medical community and try to educate my friends and family ( half my family is ill and has mysterious illnesses but it’s not celiac. UGH) but mainly get told
        “I think everyone has it cause I want attention and want other people to be “sick” with me.”

        It wasn’t until I started researching on my own that I figured out I have all the symptoms for Celiac. Infertility being the biggest. They couldn’t figure out why I wasn’t getting pregnant. It turned out I was, but having miscarriages because my body couldn’t sustain the pregnancy and fight off gluten at the same time…

        Just watched the fox show and the BB where you left and cried when you were talking to Danny. Hopefully they get their act together and get you back on the show. I won’t be watching till they do. You’re a great actress and I have been a fan since Spin City and faithfully watched Samantha Who? Keep up the great work. Thanks for letting me rant.
        Much love,
        Mi

  19. Joan

    I thank you for your extreme efforts in educating the public about celiac and gluten intolerance. It’s been a hard road for me because I don’t test positive for celiac or wheat allergy, however, I don’t tolerate wheat or gluten. I have been gluten free for 7 months now, a choice I made on my own since doctors tell me nothing is wrong with me. I feel soooo much better! (ha, I showed them!) I have suffered with stomach issues all my life and I’m now 53 years old. That’s a long time to suffer….Just recently my 11 year old grandson, who like me has suffered with stomach problems all his little life, decided on his own to try going gluten free. The results have been nothing short of remarkable! He has had a complete turn around with his stomach problems. That being said…he’s still a kid who wants to be like all the other kids. He wants to eat what the other kids eat and what tastes good to him. It’s been a real issue for school since no one there knows about gluten/wheat intolerance or celiac. The lunchroom manager said “President Obama is making us fix healthy food now. Can’t he eat whole wheat?” Hmmmmm……..? For a while he just took cold food for lunches, things like salad and cold chicken to eat on top. After a while he got really tired of that every day. I talked with the principal and ask if he could use the teachers microwave to heat his food brought from home. The answer was a flat “NO”. I offered to purchase him a small microwave just for him. Again the answer was “NO”. Finally his mother and I had to go to the Board of Education and have a health plan written based on section 504 of the Federal law stating that he should have the same access to the things at school in which all other children have access. Finally! It just shouldn’t be that hard! You know it’s difficult for the kids, especially since most didn’t start out as an infants on gluten free foods. My grandson’s challenges will be even harder as he gets older. There will be pizza parties for school and church events. Evenings out with his friends, fries and burgers, etc…and eventually dates with girlfriends at nicer restaurants. I can’t imagine how he will feel having to explain his problem with wheat every time. It’s going to be hard for him through all the early stages of life. I do feel fortunate to have the opportunity to change things this early for him but at the same time I feel bad for him. Hopefully HE won’t feel too different….One day at a time, that’s my mantra! I guess we’ll see what the future holds but right now we’re OK.

  20. Katherine

    I thought of your advice about speaking up as I spent Thanksgiving at a friend’s home with 20 or so of her other friends. As several of us stood around the appetizers and wines table getting acquainted, someone offered me a homemade goat cheese spread and crackers. Someone else offered something else and so on… Each time I politely declined. At the time, I was chatting with a lovely 80 yr old woman who actively owns and runs a little book store in town. She asked why I wasn’t enjoying the snacks before dinner and I decided there and then to tell her “I have to be careful about what I eat because I have an autoimmune disease”. She clapped her hands together and said “Me TOO!” and we enthusiastically compared notes about our gastrointenstinal challenges. Several other folks joined the conversation. Admittedly, at times we wandered into less than appetizing topics but it really wasn’t too bad. By the time dinner was ready, I felt no guilt or shame as I skipped most of the food on the buffet. But – I DID enjoy a glass or two of wine. :-)

    1. Joan

      Katherine it’s great that you spoke up! The only way people learn about wheat related illnesses is by informing and teaching people about it. We have taught my grandson to advocate for himself. That way if we’re not around he will speak up and he gets to teach someone about his illness, too!

  21. Linda

    Dear Jennifer, After watching your Dr. Drew interview, I was reminded of what I went through in the 90s with my food testing. I would like to share this with you and hope that this is the proper venue to do so. I did the RAST blood test along with the Igg or Ige (forget which one it is) only to find that yes, there were some food issues but I still felt that something wasn’t right. I went to a wonderful nutritionist, while living in Connecticut, who did muscle testing to determine food allergies/sensitivities. There were many foods that I tested extremely weak on when the blood test showed I was okay. My friends and family thought I was crazy and that this was all in my head. I did get great results with the muscle testing and FOR ME, it was great. I am not discounting what any medical doctors are telling their patients, but merely offering another way to find some peace!

    Hope you are having a healthy day today and thank you for all you are doing for us!

  22. Tandra Goodwin

    Hi Jennifer, I’ve followed a gluten free diet for 19 days. Although I’ve had some ups and downs, I still feel so much better than I’ve felt for the last several years. My husband and I went to friends today for lunch and Marge made use a turkey meal, completely gluten-free. She made the most amazing dressing out of brown rice, with spices and broth. My friends are amazing and my life is finally a happy life. You see I’ve had gluten intolerance for as long as I remember and I’m 61 years old. Thank you again for giving Celiac Disease a name. I’d been gluten free before and made little progress because I had no idea I my make-up was contaminated I was still ingesting things that gave me reactions. This is such a wonderful journey and I’m so happy, thank you again.

  23. Linda Card

    I just saw you on Today and followed you to this blog. Ia m so happy to see that you are using your voice and celebrity to educate folks about the perils of Celiac Disease. It is a stealthy problem. I was diagnosed at age 34 and now 31 years later, I still struggle with ‘episodes’ from eating something that I thought was safe. Binders used in medication frequently gives me problems. Pharmaceutical companies are not always full disclosure about the binders they use in their products. Keep up the good work.

  24. Paula

    Holidays are challenge being a celiac especially with kiddos that have most of the same food issues as their mom( though they are not as restricted as I am)..:/.. I can eat basic naturally gluten and all the other “frees” I have to eat and not miss the goodies because feeling good is my goal.. But when you see your kids sad and near tears because they can’t have all the treats everyone is partaking in..well that is BIG motivation to Make safe delicious versions of everone’s old favorites.. last holiday season was our second being gluten,grain, legume, dairy and soy free..
    Our Holiday menu looked like this
    honey/brown sugar glazed ham- we opted to skip the turkey-hard to find one that is totally grain free unless you raise and kill it yourself
    Pork Roast
    “Cornbread” stuffing made from coconut flour- was so close to original not even my gltuen eating guests could tell it had no corn in it..
    Paleo green bean casserole- YUM is all I can say- I nevr been a fan of the original but this version is amazing,
    Bacon wrapped cabbage,
    roasted veggies and olive oil
    dairy free-” sour cream” and garlic mashed potatoes
    sweet potato casserole-
    Treats we made through out the holiday season
    chili -cheese fries made with nut cheese
    Coconut flour blueberry muffins
    Paleo nut crusted pumpkin pie with homemade dairy free whipped coconut cream.
    Fudge brownie made with potato starch
    ginger bread cookies
    french toast
    almond butter chocolate chip cookies
    my version of peanut butter cups

  25. Betsey

    Jennifer,
    Just caught your Fox interview.. That will be the end of CBS watching for me… The intolerance for celiac is most discomforting and demonstrates an ignorance to learn…I suffer a gluten intolerance and so appreciate your willingness to educate the general public, open a bakery with real food, put yourself out there and to care about the hurting…if I eat gluten, I break out somewhere with eczema and I have a systemic itching under my skin.. You are a blessing…Thank you so very much!

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