Let’s Make our own Gluten Free Pre-Packaged Mixes!
Living on a gluten free diet, you miss the ability to go to the grocery store and pick up even the simplest of things. Label reading is second nature to you and can become very discouraging as EVERYTHING seems to contain gluten! It would be great to be able to reach into the kitchen cupboards and pull out the convenient products you were so used to before.
Things like pre-packaged gravy mix, spaghetti, taco and chili seasoning mixes, white sauce mix and many others that make preparing a meal quick and easy. When you do find a gluten free gravy mix packet or something similar, the price seems a little high for what you are buying. Is there a way to make these mixes at home and at a more economical price that what you can find? The answer is a resounding YES!
Mixes that you make at home, are of a higher quality and taste. They can easily be prepared in batches that fit your budget and family size. You will not have to travel all over town because different stores carry different things. You will be able to replace them immediately whenever you need to replenish them. And by tweaking them, you can change them to suit the tastes of your family.
Any mixes can be packaged in inexpensive containers or plastic zip bags. Go to yard sales to find tins and jars that can be purchased for very little money. Hunt through your local “Goodwill” or similar store where the money you spend will help those in need. Make sure to thoroughly clean and dry your containers.
For storing seasoning and dressing mixes (ones that are small) go to your local Discount store and purchase small plastic boxes with lids that will fit inside your kitchen cupboards. Michaels or a similar crafts/fabric store usually carry small 2 inch by 3 inch zip bags or just use the snack size zip type bags you can find at the grocery store. These are the ideal size for storing your gluten free seasoning and dressing mixes.
When you have finished assembling your gluten free mixes, make sure to label them with the mix name and the date when made. Taco seasoning mix and Spaghetti mix look a lot alike, but they certainly do not taste the same!
Now that you have collected your containers, the next step is to pick a few mixes to try out. Go through the recipes you have selected and make a list of the ingredients necessary to make them. Check and see if you have everything on hand. If not, a trip to the store is in order. Preparation is key to ensure everything goes smoothly.
Now it is time to put your gluten free mixes together. Make sure to set aside enough time to finish the ones you want to do. Have all of your kitchen cookware and gadgets at the ready and all your ingredients assembled.
One special hint: when making small snack size bag mixes, place the bags in small cups or bowls to hold them up so they will not fall over. Place one ingredient at a time in EVERY bag that will contain that mix. For example: if your mix uses cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg, measure out the cinnamon and place it in all the bags you are making. Then move to the allspice and then to the nutmeg. That way you can keep track of what has gone into that mix and it really is a lot quicker.
You don’t have a whole Saturday to make your mixes? That’s ok! Here is a quick and easy way to stock up on mixes you use all the time. Everyone has a favorite cake, cookie or bread recipe that they make over and over again. When you get everything out that you need in order to make that chocolate or vanilla cake that is calling your name today, go ahead and take out a few zip type plastic bags.
As you measure out your DRY ingredients for the cake you are making, place the same amount of each dry ingredient into your plastic bags! Label, seal them up and place them in the cupboard.
YOU HAVE JUST MADE A GLUTEN FREE MIX! It’s that easy! Next time you want to make that cake again, you already have all the dry ingredients ready to go! If you do this with your favorite recipes, you could easily have enough homemade mixes for the next 3 months. And the best thing is that you do not have to make as much of a mess every time you want to bake!