Wheat Free and Dairy Free Diet Suggestions

Updated on February 04, 2009
J.L. asks from Millington, NJ
20 answers

Hi, my daughter was recently put on a no dairy or wheat diet. I am looking for suggestions on things to feed her. She is just over a year old. I found some veggie burgers that are made out of sunflower seed and am not sure if toddlers can eat sunflower seeds. Thanks for your help.

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answers from Houston on

Hi J.,

Rice! Brown rice is better than white rice.

Costco's Dino Nuggets are wheat and dairy free.

Also, consider rice noodles (inexpensive and available at most grocery stores and all asian markets), corn noodles, quinoa noodles... all available at major grocery stores.

There are also many soy product substitutes that mimic dairy products.

Best wishes!



answers from Austin on

Someone just told me that Central Market has a list at the front desk that lists all of their foods and what they are free of, gluten, dairy, ect.

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answers from San Antonio on

As an adult, I found I had this problem 10 years ago. It has gotten easier. Look for a capital V on the box for Vegan..many products have some form of dairy (lactose, casin, etc). There are many rice products out there...Amy's, Arrowhead Mills, Dr. Bob. EnviorKidz cereal, Enjoy Life. Checkout www.amazon.com. They make great rice pasta now. Also, watch out for HVP which is found in the morning star burgers...I prefer Wildwood (organic). You may want to get some books at library or Half Price Books: Vegetarian Baby or Raising vegetarian children, Vegan Baking. I am not saying to raise your child vegetarian, however it is very difficult when you go to parties and they have a colorful gluten filled cake. These books explain what to do?... when. You are lucky in a way, you found about this when she is 1 year old. It is when she is learning to develop taste and texture. The more veggies she is exposed to the better she will acquire a taste for. Many parents start feeding their kids chicken nuggets and french fries (USA's favorite veggie) and that is what they eat all the time. For more tips checkout www.notmilk.com, cow's milk is great nutrition for baby calf's. It is designed to make a calf into a 500 pound animal in 6 mos. Your child is on the right track, she will not be missing out on anything. Sunflower seeds are ok, no other nuts yet. When the time comes, only Organic peanut butter (peanuts have the most pesticides and chemicals). I hope this helps, I have a B.S. in Holistic Nutrition. I can also be reached at www.mybiopro.com/claudia13

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answers from Austin on


I think you found the right source for some valuable info. The only thing I can help you with is to say that I know HEB has a wonderful section for gluten and wheat free diets. And also I'm personally am very lactose intolerant so I can say that will be a little bit of a challenge for you to avoid dairy, but it's not too hard once you get the hang of it. Make sure when you look at the ingredients on a product that you look all the way to the bottom of the list. Many times dairy products will be listed as Whey or other disguising words. In my case just a little Whey at the bottom of the ingredient list will make me sick so I've learend to read the whole label.

I must add that I'm a little scared and disturbed about the suggestion one lady made about the raw milk. Here is a website written by a doctor who's involved in the controversy about it.


First of all your supposed to be avoiding dairy anyway and raw milk is still dairy and still contains lactose so the discussion about it is pointless but I had to throw my two cents in about how dangerous this can be. 200 years ago before the pastures were not over populated with herds this may have been good but now it's just plain scary. Oh, and it is illegal, lets not forget that one.

Good luck to you! What a challenge you are facing with her diet! But you can do it!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Odessa on

Hi! My son was diagnosed with food allergies when he was 9 months old. He had milk, wheat, nuts, and eggs removed from his diet (well, some of those he was not actually having yet, so when turning 1 he was not allowed to have those). So, we have been down your road. As far as meat goes, anything Kosher is safe for her to eat. Stay away from processed meats as majority use milk as a filler. If you have a bread machine there are tons of safe bread mixes you can use. I can not vouch for taste though as they all called for eggs (which my son could not have). I opted to buy bread from a local health food store that did not have anything in it. As far as breakfast items and snacks, the brand Enjoy Life has been our life saver. They are made in a dedicated allergy free bakery and are very yummy. There are also allergy free cake mixes, cookie mixes, and tons of good cookbooks out there. I just recently got brave enough to start baking and adjusting my personal recipes to make them something our son can eat. Cooking meals though was a lot easier than I would have ever thought it would be!

Now, after all that rambling the most important thing I can say is learn to read food labels. There are so many scientific words for ingredients that are put on labels that I would never know what they were before. We were able to find a WONDERFUL pediatric allergy specialist that gave us TONS of reading material that all had different names of things to avoid on labels. Lots of labels will say this contains milk, wheat, or whatever or even say processed on equipment or in a facility that also processes milk or whatever. However, they do not have to say that, and some still opt to not put that. In those cases it is just a judgment call.

And last but not least, the internet is such a great tool we have these days. When in doubt I can almost always find what I am needing to know somewhere out there!

Sorry if I rambled to much! Feel free to contact me should you ever have any further questions!

Good luck!

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answers from Houston on

Hi!. My daughter is on a GFCF diet also! There is a good website that I use for recipes, http://www.leewebshop.com/gfcfrecipes if you google GFCF diet recipes you'll get a lot of websites, but this one has been my favorite so far. I also shop at a great healthfood store called Natural kitchen in Kingwood,TX. I buy her substitues for cream cheese and sour cream and cheese slices all made of tofu. I also buy her breaded chicken strips and pizza crusts made of rice flour. The ladies there are very helpful. They even have gummy bears and candy that is GFCF. I also buy her toothpaste there because it's all natural, has no gluten and no flouride. Vitamins and many more things are available there for kids on a GFCF diet. I love that store. Their website is www.NatKit.com I hope this helps! Send me a message if you'd like more details. I'll be happy to help.

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answers from Beaumont on

There is tons of information for that on the Eat Right 4 Your Type website and book by the same name.
I am a Type O Blood Type and have avoided wheat and dairy for years.
It does not mean your child needs to be vegetarian. The sunflower burger patties sound vegearian and you are not avoiding meat, just dairy and wheat.
Get informed. This stuff works and I am so much healthier since I eat what is beneficial to my type and avoid things that are not.
Good Luck.

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answers from Houston on
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answers from San Antonio on

My son could not eat milk products, eggs and soy from birth to age 6. I found a great resource on line and they have a wonderful cookbook plus a party cookbook for birthday party ideas & recipes. The web site is:


They also have a toll free number: 1-800-929-4040

It is call The Food Allergy Network. I hope this helps!


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answers from Houston on

Edited to talk about the raw milk- I'm assuming that eliminating milk had nothing to do about lactose as another poster spoke of, but the caesin. Many believe that the caesin in goat milk is different/allowed and give their children goat milk instead. Some say that their child was fine on cow milk, as long as it was organic, because it was the pesticides ect in regular milk that was affecting their child!! If interested in trying raw, google raw milk directory for lists of farms that provide raw milk which is perfectly safe if done correctly.

Also, watch out for caesin in the dairy free products...they often contain it (like the soy cheese or dairy free ice cream.) I don't know why they do that, I guess because they assume it's the lactose that is being avoided but with so many on the GFCF diet they shouldn't use caesin at all!

Lots of fruits and veggies. :) This morning I made pancakes with a GF cornbread mix, ground flax, and GF oats. They were delicious. I made something for my girls last night with 1/2 package Asian rice noodles, 3 chopped apples, a little rice milk, brown sugar, cinnemon,salt, apple cider vinegar and 2 eggs. I baked at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. It was very good! Look in the asian section for noodles- they have rice as well as mung bean. the mung bean one are glass noodles in a pink net package.

In the healthfood section of Kroger and HEB they have spagetti, mixes, and all kinds of stuff. Sub butter with oil and milk with non dairy variations (try to avoid soy, stick to rice and nut milks if she's not allergic to nuts.) If you have a Whole Foods nearby (I drive an hour) they have wonderful selections in the GF section as well as in other areas of the store. For snacks you can get veggie chips, dried peas and other veggies, cheetos and fritos. Frubus I think it's called makes fruit roll ups and leathers and smooshes. Kroger puts these on sale for good prices sometimes.

I like the Whole Foods brand GF bread in the freezer section but it might have milk in it. Probably the best thing to do is make your own. Whole Foods also sell bulk rice and tapioca and almond flours, which are cheaper then buying them prepackaged.

Look at ingredients always and if it says wheat, barley, malt, spelt, modified food starch (unless specified)stay away. I found that oats had a problem too because they often dust the oats with wheat flour (but you can buy GF oats from Bob's Red Mill.) Here's a list of grains with symbols to show what you can't use. http://www.csaceliacs.org/gluten_grains.php

S., mom to 5, at least 3 on the autism spectrum

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answers from Houston on

Not sure about sunflower seeds, but most nonmeat burgers and hotdogs are mostly soy protein, which should be fine. We eat a LOT of soy in our house, both in the form of tofu pups and other soy hot dogs and boca burgers and garden burgers. I am pretty sure there is a dairy-free mac and cheese out there, and there is also a kind of nonmeat crumbly stuff you can buy in the frozen food sections of Whole Foods that you can add to pasta dishes that has a texture similar to hamburger. Also, Amys has a GREAT non-cheese pizza, but you should be aware that it does have one component of cheese in it -- one particular enzyme or something that makes the soy cheese melt and have a nice texture, so depending on whether you are avoiding something in or about dairy or avoiding all dairy in every way, that might or might not be right for you.

good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Houston on

I do not know if you have an HEB grocery store near you, but they offer 1/2 aisle with gluten/dairy free items.
We buy the Almond crackers...they are awesome!
Check it out!
We have no allerigies, but still enjoy the food.
Best of luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Houston on

Sunflower seeds are fine. Just avoid anything with nuts until she's at least 2. This will be a challenge with a gluten and dairy free diet, but almonds, peanuts, pine nuts, walnuts, pecans, etc. are a no-no. Things with sesame seeds, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds should be fine. The web sites listed by 2 of the posters regarding celiac and dairy free diets will be a big help. Most grocery stores now have fair to middling sections of gluten free products these days but not all of those items are dairy free. Fresh, homemade foods are going to be your best bet. Fruits, vegetables, grains, meat. I know meat can be hard because many kids don't like the texture so you'll have to play with protein. There are decent rice and soy cheeses on the market now. Corn chips are ok for snacks, but too much corn isn't good because it's not readily digestible by the human body. It seems overwhelming at first, but it's possible to accommodate the diet and still have good, healthy food. With some research you'll even be able to find restaurants that can work with you. Again, check out the two web sites - they will give you a lot to work with.

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answers from Houston on

You may consider trying 'raw milk'. It's not legal to sell raw milk in TX (don't you love gov. regulation?) but there are some places (farms) that do a 'cow share' program. You purchase a 'share' ($10 in my experience) in a dairy cow and then are able to purchase milk from 'your' cow for consumption. Apparently when milk producers pasturize milk it changes the structure and makes it less compatible with our systems, raw milk (is simple milk striaght from the cow) is more compatible because it hasn't been pasturized.

As for wheat free, HEB carries a whole line of gluten free products. You can also try to stick to corn products, like fritos.

Best wishes!



answers from San Antonio on

I give my son soy yogurt, soy butter, non-dairy cream cheese, non dairy soy margerine. These are all at Sun Harvest or Whole foods. It's hard at first, but you get used to it.



answers from San Antonio on

Hello J.,

chicken nugets are out of the question. even the pieces of chicken that are lightly breaded like at chick fillet are out of the question.

also keep in mind that some places add wheat to their omelette mix. so ask for omelletes to be made with fresh/cracked eggs not from the mix and tell them becasue of the wheat/milk allergy.

Here is a quick list to give you ideas (she might not be ready for some of these foods, so it's up to your discretion what you try)

think of a mixture of asian/mediterranean/latin-american diet and that will help you with ideas. (by the way, soysauce is made with wheat, and so are the steak sauces)

beans (mashed of course)
vegetables like carrots, beets, etc.
(cooked and small pieces)
corn tortillas
sweet potatoes
plantains (peeled, boiled and mashed just like potatoes)
rice cakes
gluten-free pankcakes
soy milk* (as long as she's not allergic to soy)
oat milk*
rice milk*
*they sell enriched w/ calcium and vitamin D.
can she have eggs? (wonderful source of protein)

I bought a soymilk maker. I usually make almond milk in it. I like cooking with almond milk because it has the closest consistency to cow milk. almond milk can be heavy on the stomach so I use for cooking and the one they sell in the store is too watery for cooking (I think).

for the past six years, this is where I've been buying cakes for my kids/family birthdays. my favorite one is the pineapple flavored cake -- I use rice milk and olive oil to make it)
their cakes are soooooooo tasty!

go to an asian food store and you'll find lots of veggies, fruits, alternatives. read more about gluten-free food.

wholefoods market and sprouts have lots of alternatives too.
it's not easy but you can do it.
for bread, make your own gluten free bread. if you buy any gluten free bread, keep in mind that it's best to put it in the toaster (tastes better for some reason you'd have to figure out what setting you like best).

Good luck and hang in there! she might outgrow it in a couple of years.

make sure the veggie burgers don't have wheat products.

READ ALL THE LABELS.... it's a must.
you find wheat even in rice packages... in shampoo and lotions. google all the names wheat goes by...

she can have sunflower seeds AS LONG AS SHE'S NOT ALLERGIC TO RAGWEEDS.... some ragweeds are: sunflower, safflower, lettuce, artichoke, daisies, dandelion.

Good luck! ~C.~



answers from College Station on

Have you looked at the Morning Star brand? They have a lot of frozen veggie foods.



answers from San Antonio on

Hi there,
I have a gluten intolerence which means I cannot eat products which contain wheat,rye,barley,spelt or soy sauce (found in all chinese foods),also there can be hidden gluten in processed foods and meats/sausages and dips,condensed soups and broths, salad dressings,etc. I pretty much eat all products containing rice,potato,corn. I use all organic vegies & when buying meat I try to get the ones which are not marinaded.
So for example,for breakfast I eat hot rice cereal or steel oats or puffed rice cereal or Quinoa cereal with almond milk,goats milk or rice milk. The Red Mill products are now very easily available at all HEB stores. The Amy's product line have gluten free Pizzas,enchiladas,etc available also at HEB and your local health food store. Whole foods also have a wide variety of wheat and dairy free products.I also go on-line and find gluten free recipes and products thru the Glutenconnection.com I really do hope this helps to steer you in the right direction,as I have had to make this a life style change and slowly introducing this to my family as well as a gluten free diet is by far healthier and has been recommended for people with allergies,kids with ADD,ADHD and autism.



answers from Corpus Christi on

Hi J.!

I have a child with several different food allergies and have done quite a bit of research on this topic. I have tested negative myself; however, have found that I am "sensitive" or "intolerant" to many gluten and casein products, like my child. There are many good books and web resources to obtain good recipes. The books I have, which I can recommend are:

1. Dangerous Grains: Why Gluten Cereal Grains May Be
Hazardous To Your Health (2002)
James Braly, MD & Ron Hoggan, MA

2. The Gluten Free Kid: A Celiac Disease
Survival Guide (2005) - Melissa London

3. Special Diets for Special Kids: Understanding and
Implementing Special Diets to Aid in the Treatment
of Autism & Related Developmen. Disorders (1998)
Lisa Lewis, PhD - (over 150 recipes)

4. Living Gluten-Free for Dummies (2006)
Danna Korn - (w/ recipes)

5. Incredible Edible Gluten-Free Food for Kids
150 Family-Tested Recipes (2002)
Sheri L. Sanderson

6. Let's Eat Out! Your Passport to Living Gluten and
Allergy Free -(2005) Kim Koeller & Robert La France

7. The Kid-Friendly ADHD & Autism Cookbook: The Ultimate
Guide To The Gluten-Free, Casein-Free Diet (What It Is,
Why It Works, How To Do It) Pamela Compart, MD & Dana
Laake, RDH, LDN (2006)

Click on the attached link to take you to a web site that will allow you to see several gluten-free Christmas cookie recipes, as well as many other great web sites for those with food allergies. Enjoy and have a great holiday!


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