Welcome to Lexie's Kitchen & Living. I'm glad you stopped by and hope you enjoy the five years of recipes and ramblings collected here.

The inspiration for this site was my son. To learn about our journey to restore his intestinal and neurological health read here

Follow a gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free diet? Take a peek at my cookbook.  

 

 

 


 

 

 

Saturday
Sep272014

Food For Life Sprouted Gluten Free Bread

Back in the day we I ate a lot of Ezekiel Bread.

When we removed gluten from Little Man's diet, the family jumped on board in support. 

That was seven years ago—when store-bought gluten-free bread was pretty much nonexistent. Thankfully a few bakeries stepped up to deliver, albeit, high starch replacements, but an Ezekiel-like loaf was nowhere to be found.

This week the nice people at Food For Life Baking Company—the makers of Ezekiel Bread—had me kicking up my heels. They had delivered a box full of their new gluten-free, vegan, sprouted grain bread to try. It was happy dance time as I ate a piece of it toasted and topped with buttery spread and homemade raspberry jam. My oh my!

The crazy part?

Gluten-free bread baking can be challenging enough, then add to that baking without the binding power of eggs. Not easy. Well lemme tell ya, Food For Life Baking Company has nailed it with a 100% (certified) gluten-free AND VEGAN bread that is hearty, wholesome and nearly whole wheat like!

Of the Food For Life's Sprouted For Life™ Gluten-Free BreadsOriginal and Cinnamon Raisin were our favorite. They held together well and even could be enjoyed warmed up in the microwave—but toasted was best!

This new bread line comes in four varieties (they are so new, they aren't even up on the Food For Life website at time of writing) and is made from ingredients like sprouted quinoa, sprouted millet and chia seeds.

BUYER BEWARE: Food For Life makes similar breads in gluten-FULL varieties, please be diligent in purchasing only Food For Life breads that are clearly marked "Gluten-Free."

 

Food For Life's Sprouted For Life™ Gluten-Free Breads will be hitting most major U.S. markets by the end of the year, so keep your eyes peeled in the gluten-free freezer section. They are a must try!

Tuesday
Sep162014

Big Favor

Hi all! Have you seen or own a copy of the cookbook Everyday Classics?

How many stars would you give it? 

I would be grateful, beyond words, for even a short and sweet review on Amazon.

A HUGE thanks to those who have already left one!!

Here are the Chicken Pot Pie Filling and Pie Crust recipes from the book. Don't want to bother with the pie crust? The filling is tasty over rice!

Sunday
Aug312014

2014 Lunch Box Gear Review


At the start of each school year I am a woman on a mission. I am bound and determined to seek, find and possess the ultimate lunch box system. 

Both of my kids go to school packing lunch and a snack. As with any task, I've found it can be a dreaded chore if I'm not organized and don't have the right tools.

This month some dynamite companies banded to together for Rock the Lunch Box. Head on over there for some great "food-to-pack" ideas after, that is, you watch this video my boys helped put together on the topic of WHAT we pack our food IN. Do you have a tried and true system? Please share in a comment below!

Take it away boys! 

Where to Get the Gear We Reviewed in the Video

Sistema Klip It Lunch Cube Container

  • Made in New Zealand
  • BPA-free Virgin Polypropylene
  • Dimensions: 3.90" h x 5.50" w x 5.50" l
  • Dishwasher, microwave and freezer safe
  • Airtight
  • GET IT HERE

Easy Lunch Boxes

  • Made from BPA-free food-safe polypropylene
  • Safe for refrigerator, freezer, microwave, & dishwasher
  • Needs a rubber band to ensure lid is super secure
  • Click here for all the specs
  • GET IT HERE

Thermos FOOGO Stainless Steel Food Jar

  • Dimensions: 7.60" h x 3.50" w x 5.30" and holds 10 ounces of food.
  • Double wall vacuum insulated food jar keeps contents cold and fresh for seven hours; warm for five hours
  • Wide opening for easy cleaning
  • Made from BPA-free materials
  • Ergonomically designed lid with rubber grip, non-slip, scratch resistant base; cool to the touch with warm foods, sweat-proof with cold
  • Light, compact and portable
  • GET IT HERE

BlueAvocado Re-Zip Seal Reusable Bags

  • Leak-proof, double-lock closure seals in freshness and perfect for snacks, sandwiches, travel, home organization and more
  • Pack of 5 reusable zip seal bags (3 lunch size, 2 snack size)-the perfect solution for plastic baggie waste
  • Freezer safe and hand washable
  • Made of FDA-grade PEVA material (which is also PVC, BPA and lead free)
  • Lunch bag is 8.5" x 7.25" and snack bag is 8.5" x 4.75"
  • Seals are a bit challenging for little hands
  • GET IT HERE

Oggi Steel Pinch Bowls

  • Great for small servings of dried fruit and nuts and I use for sauces.
  • Made of stainless steel.
  • Includes airtight lids, thicker dressings & ketchup have not leaked in my observation
  • Each bowl is 3-inch in diameter
  • BUY IT HERE

Kids Konserve Stainless-Steel Food Containers
Correction in video. Lids are BPA-free plastic, not silicon.

  • Dimensions: 2.00" h x 4.00" w x .1" l
  • Food-grade stainless-steel containers
  • Each container measures 4” w x 2” d
  • Leak-proof, BPA-free, recyclable plastic lids
  • Lids are easy enough for most little hands
  • BUY IT HERE

Norpro Silicone Ice Pop Maker Set

  • Reusable
  • Fill seal freeze and enjoy
  • Create treats using juices, purees, yogurt, soda, ice cream, pudding, applesauce, gelatin, fruit, berries, candies, chocolate, carmel, whipped cream and sprinkles!
  • Made of flexible silicone
  • BPA free
  • BUY IT HERE

Zipzicle Zip-Top Ice-Pop Pouch

  • Durable freezer grade material to prevent tears or bites
  • No sticks or small parts and BPA-free
  • I wash and re-use, but these are meant to be disposable/recycled
  • BUY IT HERE 

 

LifeFactory Glass Water Bottle with Flip Cap

  • Variety of sizes and models
  • We are still testing this flip cap model, but so far so good
  • Great choice if glass is a must of you and your kiddo (personally I don’t like plastic and steel water bottles)
  • Wide mouth for ice & easy cleaning
  • Silicone sleeve provides protection & a non-slip grip
  • Easy carry handle folds down & out of the way when not in use
  • Not completely break-proof
  • If bottle will get jostled around, consider the standard unscrew and sip top
  • BUY IT HERE

Contigo Jackson Water Bottle

  • Wide mouth for ice & easy cleaning
  • Split-body design for ease of cleaning
  • Leak proof; lid prevents spills and leaks between uses and on-the-go
  • Convenient carrying loop
  • One-handed drinking
  • Top-rack dishwasher safe
  • BUY IT HERE

Laptop Lunches Bento-Ware

  • Tray-like feel makes lunch fun and accommodates a variety of food sizes
  • 3 sealable lids prevent wet foods from leaking onto other foods
  • Containers (not lids) are microwave safe and dishwasher safe (top rack only - no heat boosters)
  • Convenient size fits in backpacks and most lunchboxes
  • Made in the USA
  • No lead, BPA, phthalates or PVC
  • Not easy for little hands/fine motor challenges
  • BUY IT HERE

Sugarbooger Zippee! Lunch Tote

  • Fits Laptop Lunch Box, Klip It and Easy Lunch Boxes
  • Dimensions: 7.50" h x 4.50" w x 10.00"
  • Durable cotton canvas with stain resistant waterproof coating
  • Main compartment zips completely open for easy packing
  • Insulated, wipe clean exterior
  • Exterior mesh pocket for additional snacks or smaller items
  • Machine wash using delicate cycle
  • BUY IT HERE

Crocodile Creek Pocket Lunch Box

  • These sturdy, high-quality lunch boxes keep food fresh and prevent crushing. Great for school or travel.
  • Simply wipe with a damp cloth after each use for easy cleaning
  • Dimensions: 7.5"x 9.5"
  • PVC free, phthalate free, BPA free and vinyl free
  • BUY IT HERE

PlanetBox “Launch” Lunchbox

  • Largest of the PlanetBox line-up. Here is the smaller Rover and snack-size Shuttle.
  • Plastic-free makes up for weight—I figure it will build my kids’ dead-lift muscles!
  • Cannot add much bulk or flap will not close
  • Optional fun magnets for customization
  • Holds 6.5 cups of food
  • Lid for the leak-proof Satellite Dish is cumbersome to put on
  • Tall Dipper has a silicone insert that will surely find its way to the dark abyss of the bottom of the dishwasher—it's just a matter of time
  • Can use the PlanetBox ColdKit or any flat ice pack
  • BUY IT HERE

Kids Konserve Squiggle Sweat-Free Ice Pack

  • Ours is 3 years old and looks like new!
  • Dimensions: 5.00" h x .75" w x 7.00" l
  • Non-toxic and easily slips into the reusable Squiggle cover made from recycled plastic bottles
  • Free from BPA, lead, and phthalate
  • Made to fit with Kids Konserve waste-free lunch kits and can also be used with any existing portable meal sack
  • BUY IT HERE

 

Sunday
Aug242014

Gluten-Free School Lunchbox

Diggin' into the archives folks. I figured I'd post this one again because we mammas are always in need of fresh school lunch ideas! I just ordered a get up from this company, aiming to eliminate plastic completely. Me and the kids will give it a test drive and if we love it, we will share our thoughts with you in a future post.

____________________________________________

I have to say I admire, and secretly envy, moms with bento box super powers like these. And what about those mamma’s whose kiddos gobble down collard wraps and zucchini kabobs? All hail!

I’ll admit, the lunches I pack may not be the envy of the lunch table and could be a tad more nutritionally dense, but I’ve loosened up a bit. Getting it perfect was stressing me out waaaayyy too much. So I've cut myself some slack, figuring that I’ve got breakfast and dinner to load my kids up on green smoothies and quality protein. When it comes to lunch, if I can meet these three criteria, I’m good!

  1. Lunch will include fresh fruit and vegetables—fresh produce should be a part of every meal. I want my kids to lean that at a young age. 
  2. Lunch will include a treat—like a piece of dark chocolate, a small piece of fruit leather or a healthy cookie wrapped in gold foil. My aim is to make lunch special and combat any feelings of “how come I can’t eat what the other kids eat.”
  3. Lunch will be eaten. I try to strike a balance between healthy and tasty. What’s the point of packing food the kids won’t eat? I want my kids to be focused and have energy at school, not zoned out in the corner because they didn’t eat lunch … because they didn’t like it.

Before summer ends, I sit down with my kids and we make a list of the foods they like for lunch (we are gluten-, dairy-, egg- and nut-free). The list we compiled is taped to the fridge and provides me with quick inspiration when I’m too tired to think. At the top of this list are quesadillas—PB&J, pizza, and turkey.

Lunchbox Quesadillas

Quesadillas are great finger food and easy to make gluten-free, dairy-free, and egg-free. And when you think outside the box (or the tortilla), you can come up with some pretty tasty variations.

THE TORTILLA

Quesadillas start with tortillas. The two brands we use are Food For Life and Rudi’s. Food for Life Brown Rice Tortillas contain minimal ingredients and are thick and stout. Rudi’s line of tortillas come in three flavors, Plain, Spinach, and Fiesta. They are the closest thing I’ve found to white flour tortillas and work fabulously well for wraps. If you’d like to make your own, here is a tasty recipe.

THE FILLINGS

Pizza Quesadillas: Pizza Sauce, Applegate Pepperoni, Black Olives, and Daiya shreds.

PB&J Quesadillas: Sunbutter sunflower seed spread and your favorite jam.

Turkey Quesadillas: A dab of Veganaise and yellow mustard, Applegate organic roasted turkey breast, and Daiya shreds.

THE PREPARATION

Layer filling between two tortillas and heat in skillet with a little oil until tortillas begin to brown and crisp up. Slice into wedges.

Our Lunchbox “System”

Finally, a lunch packing “system” that works for us.

The Sugarbooger Zippee! Lunch Tote line has been a proven winner. It is BPA, phthalate, lead and PVC-free and meets or exceeds U.S., Canadian and European safety standards. They come in a bunch of cute motifs and are priced right. They are insulted to keep food cool and are easily washed by hand or in the washer.

Into the lunch tote I goes:

The food—neatly compartmentalized in a Sistema Klip It Lunch Cube

Herbal tea or water in a 9-ounce LifeFactory Glass Beverage Bottle

An ice pack to keep everything cool (I like this one this one)

A napkin and, of course, a little love note!

Tuesday
Aug122014

Grilled Peach and Almond Ice Pops

This recipe and photo courtesy of FoodNetwork.com.

On the Western slope of the Rocky Mountains grow the sweetest, juiciest, most flavorful peaches you'll ever sink your teeth into—and it's prime picking right now! Palisade Peaches are being pedaled on roadsides, at farmers markets and at my all-time favorite veggie stand, Top o' The Hill.

Aren't these the most handsome, hard-working farmers you've seen in a long time? 

Top o' the Hill prices are great!

And these boys know a bit or two about bookkeeping and planning crops for next year!

And did I mention their other talents?

In honor of peach season and these salt of the earth boys who've put in a lot of hard work this season, I'd like to share this refreshing popsicle recipe from our friends at FoodNetwork.com

Support your local farmers!

Grilled Peach and Almond Ice Popsicles

Ingredients: 

One 6-inch piece fresh ginger, unpeeled, sliced into very thin rounds (about 1 cup)
1/3 cup sugar (use coconut sugar if preferred)
1 pound ripe yellow peaches (about 3 peaches), peeled with a vegetable peeler, halved and pitted
1 tablespoon unsalted butter (or dairy-free buttery spread), melted
2 tablespoons peach preserves
1 cup plain unsweetened almond milk
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Kosher salt
1/2 cup smoked almonds, finely chopped

Directions: 

Special equipment: four 4-ounce ice-pop molds or six 3-ounce molds, 4 or 6 ice-pop sticks

  1. Prepare a grill or large grill pan for high heat. Bring the ginger, sugar and 1/4 cup water to a simmer in a small saucepan. Cook on medium-low for 10 minutes. Let cool completely at room temperature, at least 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, brush the peach halves all over with the butter or buttery spread. Place them cut-side down on the grill, and grill until very charred, about 5 minutes. Flip the peaches, and grill until the rounded side is charred in spots and the peaches are tender but not falling apart, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate to cool completely, about 20 minutes.
  3. Put the cooled peaches, preserves, 1/2 cup of the almond milk, lemon juice and a small pinch of salt in a blender. Strain the cooled ginger syrup into the blender, pressing the ginger pieces in the strainer with the back of a spoon to extract as much flavor as possible; discard the ginger. Puree the peach mixture until completely smooth, scraping down the sides of the blender part way through if needed. Transfer the mixture to a large liquid measuring cup with a pouring spout.
  4. Pour the mixture into the ice-pop molds, leaving 1/4 inch of space at the top (the mixture will expand). Insert the sticks. Freeze until solid, 5 hours to overnight.
  5. When ready to serve, put the remaining 1/2 cup almond milk in one drinking glass and the almonds in another. Unmold the ice pops, and dip the top of each into the almond milk, then into the almonds. Serve immediately.

Recipe and Photo copyright 2014 Television Food Network, G.P. All rights reserved.