Holidays Require Candy
Holidays Require Candy
People on special diets can still enjoy the holidays; it just takes a little bit of extra planning and organizing!
Besides family, the most important thing about the holidays seems to be about the food. There are special meals, visiting relatives, vacationing and more during this time of year. All of which include eating and usually gift gifting. With careful planning ahead, your family can enjoy a wonderful holiday season, including the cuisine.
Another important part of the December holidays is the gifts. Sometimes gifts can include food, especially candy for children. Candy can be purchased at a variety of locations. Below you will find several web sites that offer allergy friendly and allergy free concoctions. Some of these candies can be ordered directly from their web site or can be ordered from other popular web sites like the grocery and gourmet section of www.amazon.com . Go to the web sites and see if the items you would like to purchase can be located at stores in your neighborhood (look for the “stores” or “locations” tabs).
One of the best online web sites for natural, nonchemical candy is Natural Candy Store. By going to their web site: www.naturalcandystore.com/category/special-diets , you can “check off” up to 37 items in order to search for candy that fits your needs. These 37 items are categorized into four sections: Special Diets (such as Feingold), Allergen Diets, Made Without and Sweeteners. You can check off as many boxes as you need in order to find the perfect candy! You can search for a certain type of candy: taffy, chewy, chocolate, jellies, lollipops, mint, caramel and more. You can also search by price, holiday, brand, colors, flavors or size. Free samples are included in each order!
Premium Chocolatiers www.premiumchocolatiers.com has allergen free candies. They are guaranteed free of all nuts, gluten, dairy, and eggs. Their candies are Vegan and all natural, too. They form chocolates into many unique holiday shapes.
Another company that cares about providing natural candies is the Surf Sweet Corporation. They use organic ingredients that are 100% nut free, gluten free, dairy free, soy free, and the candy tastes like the organic fruit juices that they use with no corn syrup! They have some Vegan products, too. They carry gummies in a variety of shapes, including holiday shapes, jelly beans, rings, worms, and bears. Their web site even shows creative ways to turn the candy into gifts. www.surfsweets.com. You can go to the location tab to find out where you can purchase their candies at stores near you.
Fudgy Hanukkah Gelt (adapted to be GFCF)
Recipe Courtesy of Barrie Silberberg
- 1 lb semisweet GFCF chocolate
- 1 lb powered sugar
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (pure)
- 6 tablespoons Earth Balance margarine
- 5 tablespoons alternative milk (potato, rice, cashew, coconut, almond, etc)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
1. Coat baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.
2. Chop chocolate.
3. In a double boiler, combine all ingredients, stir until melted and well blended, about 10 minutes.
4. Spread chocolate mix onto prepared sheet about 1/3″ thick. Let cool 5 minutes.
5. With a 1 1/2″ round Hanukkah cutter, cut out “gelt”.
6. Place on waxed sheet and chill for 15 minutes to harden. Re-melt leftover and repeat the process.
7. Fudgy Hanukkah Gelt original recipe found on food.com
Chewy Pumpkin Spice Candy
Recipe Courtesy of Jessica Espinoza
- 20 oz. Of pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, or nuts of your choice
- 3/4 cup ghee
- 1/8 cup virgin coconut oil
- 1 cup honey
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1 tbsp. Pumpkin pie spice
- 2 tsp. Vanilla extract OR 1 tsp. Vanilla bean powder
- 1/2 tsp. Sea salt, plus a tad more for sprinkling as the bars cool
1. In a large frying pan, combine the ghee, coconut oil, honey, maple syrup, salt, pumpkin pie spice, and vanilla over medium heat. Stir it while it heats up to keep everything mixed together.
2. When the mixture starts to bubble, add your seeds (or nuts). Please be careful not to splatter yourself. This glaze is H.O.T. (don’t ask me how I know). Stir the seeds around until coated and smooth them out in the pan so they are in an even layer.
3. Lower the heat to low or medium low (depending on your stove) and let the mixture continue to bubble, stirring occasionally. The sauce will continue to thicken and reduce, but be sure to watch it closely, as it can burn quickly.
4. Keep stirring until the sauce has thickened (approx. 8-10 minutes).
5. Remove the mixture from heat and let it cool for a few minutes.
6. Spread in a single layer on a silicone mat (if you have one). You can also use wax paper. I like to sprinkle a dash of sea salt over the brittle at this time.
7. Let cool on the counter for 15-20 minutes and then you can transfer to the fridge or freezer to continue the cooling process.
8. Break or cut into pieces and serve. Store in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer. Serve at room temperature.
Recipe found on www.deliciousobsessions.com
Gluten Free/Dairy Free Sunbutter Truffles
Recipe Courtesy of Carol Kicinski
- 2 – 12 oz. Packages dairy free dark (Bittersweet) chocolate chips – use divided
- 1 cup Natural Crunch or Creamy Sunbutter
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- 2 tablespoons agave nectar
- ½ cup coconut milk
- ½ teaspoon kosher or sea salt
- 2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- For rolling choose one, all or a combination of:
- 1½ cups toasted coconut flakes (toast in 350 degree oven for 8 – 10 minutes until golden brown)
- 1½ cups coconut flakes 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar – sifted
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder mixed with
- ½ cup confectioners’ sugar – sifted
1. In a large microwave-safe mixing bowl, combine 12 oz. Chocolate chips, the Sunbutter, coconut oil, agave nectar and salt. Microwave for 2 minutes or until the chocolate has mostly melted.
2. Heat the coconut milk to the boiling point. Pour the hot coconut milk over the chocolate/Sunbutter mixture and let set for 2 minutes. Add the vanilla. Stir until mixture is thick, smooth and glossy. Put mixture into an 8×8” baking dish and refrigerate for 1 hour.
3. Scoop the mixture into small balls and place on a sheet pan lined with parchment or wax paper. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
4. Place the remaining 12 oz. Of chocolate into a microwave safe bowl and heat for about 2 minutes, stirring once or twice until the chocolate is fully melted and warm to the touch but not too hot.
5. Dip the balls into the melted chocolate and coat fully. Then place the truffle in a bowl with one of the rolling ingredients, fully coat. Place on a sheet tray lined with parchment or wax paper and repeat.
6. Let the truffles set up in a cool place or in the refrigerator for about 1 hour.
7. Truffles are best served at room temperature.
Recipe found on www.simplygluten-free.com
Gluten Free/Dairy Free Christmas Bark Candy Recipes
Recipe Courtesy of Carol Kicinski
Pistachio Cranberry Bark
- One 11 oz bag of semisweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup white chocolate chips
- 1 ½ cups roasted, salted pistachios, coarsely chopped
- 1 cup dried cranberries
Line a sheet pan with a piece of parchment or waxed paper. Place the semisweet chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl and heat on high until most of the chips are melted (about 2 minutes). Stir until all the chips are melted and the chocolate is smooth and glossy. Add 1 cup of the pistachios to the chocolate and stir to combine. Pour onto the paper and spread into an even layer with a spatula about an eighth to a quarter inch thick. Put the white chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl and heat on high until they start to melt, about 1 ½ minutes. Stir until smooth. Drop spoonfuls of the white chocolate here and there with a spoon onto the semisweet chocolate. With a knife or back of a spoon swirl the white chocolate into the semisweet. Sprinkle the rest of the pistachios and the cranberries over the top. Let cool. Place in the refrigerator until hard (about half an hour). Cut or break into irregular sized and shaped pieces.
Candy Cane Bark
- ½ cup peppermint candy or broken candy canes
- One 11 oz bag of bittersweet chocolate chips
- One 11 oz bag of white chocolate chips
Line a sheet pan with a piece of parchment or waxed paper. Put the candy or broken candy canes into a plastic bag and crush with a rolling pin or heavy skillet until you have small pieces. Place the bittersweet chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl and heat on high until most of the chips are melted (about 2 minutes). Stir until all the chips are melted and the chocolate is smooth and glossy. Pour onto the paper and spread into an even layer with a spatula about an eighth to a quarter inch thick. Put the white chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl and heat on high until they start to melt, about 2 minutes. Alternatively you can put the chips in a heatproof bowl over a pan of barely simmering water (making sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water) and melt the chocolate. Stir until smooth. Drop spoonfuls of the white chocolate here and there with a spoon onto the semisweet chocolate. With a knife or back of a spoon swirl the white chocolate into the bittersweet. Sprinkle the candy pieces over the chocolates. Let cool. Place in the refrigerator until hard (about half an hour). Cut or break into irregular sized and shaped pieces.
- SITES FOR NATURAL/ORGANIC/ CHEMICAL FREE CANDY CANES AND PEPPERMINT CANDIES (Or check your health food store)
NATURAL CANDY STORE
TRUE JOY SWEETS
- Being Happy and Healthy for the Holidays
- GFCF Holiday Recipes and Hints on Eating Outside of the Home
- Fall Means Pumpkin GFCF Recipes to Enjoy this Cozy Autumn Season
- Recipes for the Holidays While on a Special Diet
- Holidays: A Time for Family and a Time for Food
- Avoid Holiday Weight Gain
- Gift Ideas for Those on Special Diets
- Special Diets Do Not Need to Break the Bank!
- Eating out While on a Special Diet
- Family Adventures in the Summer: Special Diets Don’t Have to Stop the Fun
- Where to Purchase Gluten Free Casein Free (GFCF) Foods and Some Favorite Brands
- Special Diets for a Variety of Disabilities & Disorders
- Eating Breakfast When You Are on a Special Diet
- Self-Advocating While on a Special Diet
This post originally appeared on our November/December 2015 Magazine