Gluten Free Foods For A Party

Gluten Free Foods For A Party

What are some good gluten-free finger foods for a party?

If you're looking for a specific suggestion, classics include proscuitto-wrapped melon, little kabobs of any sort of meat (chicken, lamb meatballs bound with egg), bacon-wrapped dates, butter lettuce tacos or wraps filled with carnitas or anything else, and yes, corn chips (or quality potato chips, or why not crisp bacon?) with guacamole.

Basically, the short answer is almost any finger food you like can be made or bought gluten-free. Not all, but most. You can simply google the recipe name with "gluten free" (or "paleo", which is stricter, and usually eliminates all grains and legumes excepting white rice), and find one that looks like the author knows what they are talking about and has convincing pictures.

Substitute "paleo" flours include nut flours (such as almond), coconut, tapioca, potato, and white rice. If you only care about gluten free, it's even easier to find ready-made flours and flour mixes, often made from brown rice, sorghum, and other grains. Chickpea flour (gram) is useful in some contexts. Brown rice seems to help with body and is very common in GF foods.

Generally speaking, if your issue is fancy breaded things, like crab cakes or stuffed mushrooms, almond meal or almond flour is often a good substitute. Any dips that would normally have flour can be thickened with white rice or tapioca flour.

Many chips are naturally GF, and there are very tasty GF crackers, I personally like "Nut Thins" in any flavor. Those specifically are preferable to most gluten-containing crackers IMHO.

Substitute flours work well in most cases, the most problematic issue I see would be something requiring good crostini (which you'd probably have to bake yourself and I haven't yet seen a good GF version of something with that much crunchy body), or phyllo dough. To capture the crunchiness of crostini you might have to use a vegetable like potato or even a crisped meat disc. I've seen a GF phyllo recipe but I'm not sure I believe it.

So I believe there are some limitations, but the vast majority of finger foods that aren't naturally gluten free should be pretty easy to convert.
Guacamole, salsa, and 100% corn masa chips are the easiest thing you can do, but bless you if you are thinking of doing something more for her that shows you care and also lets people know that gluten free people eat plenty of foods well.

Besides the fruit, cheese, and crudite route (check any dressings to ensure they are gluten free), the only thing you have to avoid really is flour. Plenty of things can be made without gluten, or with alternate starches. Look for items normally made with rice or corn as easy options. Even if you're doing tortilla chips (100% corn), you can also make quesadillas (cheese and salsa in the middle with choice of meat, cilantro, onions, roasted spicy peppers, etc) with corn tortillas.

Things like chicken livers with bacon, water chestnuts, these kinds of things are gluten-free (watch for soy sauce though, most are not gluten free). If you can't find safe soy sauce (get her approval as some may contain a percentage of gluten or contamination, or borrow hers if she has some), just use things like garlic, onions, salt, pepper, and herbs to spice things up. Chicken wings are great with paprika and oregano in the mix.

There are also a lot of gluten-free options convenience wise, also - loaves of bread, hot dog and hamburger buns, muffins, bagels, English muffins, cookies, cake mix, cookie mix, brownie mix, etc...

Flourless chocolate cake for dessert is not too hard (depending on how complex you go). Cheesecake can be made gluten-free, subbing cornstarch if needed, and changing to either a nut crust or omitting it. Creme brulee or flan might work. Gelatin and ice cream are yummy, or make one of those "Jell-O parfait" things that mix ice cream into Jell-O and layer. Hope that gets you started, and remember that people are grateful for any accommodations you make, you are a thoughtful friend for going a step further.
Crudites a/k/a vegetables - I urge you to cut real whole ones like carrots, celery, radishes and cucumbers (add some lemon juice and salt to make it even tastier).

Marcona almonds, hummus, guacamole, cheeses and good g.f. crackers. All delicious and g.f. - so is most good charcuterie.

For main dishes, meat and vegetables, whole grains -- all good. Avoid soy, anything with bread or breading and most processed foods and you should be okay.
Don't cook anything on your own kitchen! It is possible that your kitchen is full of invisible particles of gluten and you could contaminate the food. Avoid using the oven and blender. Even if you wash them, they probably will still be contaminated with gluten. Buy food for your friend on a specialized store where you can find cookies, cakes and even gluten-free bread. When serving the food, wash your hands before opening the pack to make sure there is no gluten on it and put it on a clean glass bowl. Don't let gluten-free food on the same table where the rest of the food is and don't let people put their hands on the gluten-free bowl (their hands will be full of gluten from the other foods). If you want to offer gluten-free food for the others, put on another bowl for them.

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