cauliflower pizza crust

Yes, it’s possible to be gluten-free and paleo and still love your pizza!

Last year I ran across a cauliflower pizza recipe which we tried while my mom in law was in town, and it was a BIG hit! We all loved it, though my only complaint was that it wasn’t sturdy enough to pick up and eat since I chose to leave out the cheese from the crust. But we all dug in with forks and knives, and while it wasn’t the same as the slices of heaven I used to love in NY, it was still a tasty version of pizza. Yay for options!

So here’s the original recipe; you can choose to eliminate the cheese from the crust as we did, but just be warned that it won’t be sturdy enough to pick up.

Note that I substituted goat cheese for mozzarella and instead of hawaiian style I added spinach and prosciutto. Delish!

Oh, and for those of you (like my husband) who don’t love cauliflower, no worries – the cauliflower flavor is undetectable 🙂


cauliflower pizza crust













There’s something about warm figs that I just love; whether they are wrapped in bacon, or simply served by themselves, I’m a happy girl when there are figs nearby. And today is one of those rare days here in Austin when it rains all day long, and I’m craving some comfort food. So while I bake a delicious Paleo Meatloaf (recipe to come later!) I’m prepping a warm fig and pistachio salad to complement it. And since I’m short on time now – meatloaf is in the oven and I’m just getting ready to prepare the salad – I thought I’d share this goodie with you too. 

This delicious salad contains fresh figs (although dried figs work too), extra-virgin olive oil, minced shallots, and dry-roasted pistachios. It’s simple, healthy and delish. 

Happy Sunday! 

Roasted figs and pistachio salad

Roasted figs and pistachio salad


  • fresh figs (although dried figs work too)
  • extra-virgin olive oil - enough to drizzle on figs and toss in salad
  • balsamic vinegar
  • minced shallots (optional)
  • dry-roasted pistachios
  • salt & pepper to taste


  1. Roast figs in oven for 10 minutes on 250.
  2. Toss the figs with olive oil and place on a baking sheet and roast for about 10 minutes.
  3. Cool, and cut in half lengthwise.
  4. Then just toss the ingredients and enjoy!

It’s Gyro Time!

While catching up on my Facebook fan pages today I noticed a comment by someone who’s FB page title caught my eye: Gluten free & other allergen free recipes. So of course I headed on over to her site to see what it was about, and its a straightforward recipe site she built to help those of us trying to live the allergy-free life which she discovered after her children were diagnosed with food allergies. There are so many of us out here who just can’t tolerate the top food allergens, and more and more wonderful resources are popping up to help us manage the allergy-free lifestyle. I’ve mentioned this before, but my hope for Inspiredeats is to offer a destination site where you can bookmark any recipe you run across online in one place (and if we haven’t found it yet, we want you to be able to add it to our site). Alongside a fully stocked “allergy-free”  shop (which right now is powered by Amazon until we get the real one built), product reviews and a local guide for allergy free friendly restaurants.  So until then, we (being myself and my fabulous hubby and son) will keep testing and posting recipes, tips, tricks, and more to help you along your allergy-free path! Ok, back to the post at hand: I know so many people who are diagnosed with a gluten sensitivity, and if you’re lucky enough to have found it early (as I was for my son) then you can most likely live a life filled with as much or as little grains as you like without an issue (though it’s not my recommendation for a quest of optimal health). And while I prefer a life free of grains and dairy (for health and intolerance reasons) I know so many of you that would like to continue to eat your typical staples like rice, bread, pasta, pizza, pastries, etc. And while I discourage mass consumption of those guys, I think moderation is key for most of you to continue on a healthy and happy path.    So, with that said, this post is dedicated to those folks who have gone gluten-free, but don’t yet want to give up their sandwiches. Thanks to for this recipe. Since my son eats grains now and then, and is a big fan of Udi’s, I’ll be making this for him as a taste test. I would omit the sour cream for personal reasons, but I imagine you can substitute some goat’s or sheep’s milk cream or just stick with the Feta cheese. Oh, and quick note on Feta – read the label carefully to make sure you’re not con suing cow’s milk if you prefer to avoid it when buying Feta as some manufacturers claim the name “Feta” on their cheese, but it’s made from cow’s milk. According to the EU, real Feta cheese must be made of at least 70% sheep milk and up to 30% goat milk, and it must be produced to definite specifications.

Gluten-free turkey gyros

Gluten-free turkey gyros


  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. basil
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/2 c. sour cream (omit for dairy free option)
  • 1/4 red onion, sliced thinly
  • 1/2 cucumber, peeled & diced
  • 1 package Udi's gluten free pizza crust
  • handful of kalamata olives, pitted & halved
  • Optional
  • 1/4 c. feta cheese


  1. Saute ground turkey in a little olive oil with garlic & dry spices; cook until no longer pink.
  2. In the mean time, mix feta with sour cream (omit this step if not using cheese).
  3. Heat gluten free pizza crusts in microwave until pliable; load up with turkey mixture and top with olives, red onion, sour cream mixture & cucumbers.
  4. Enjoy!



As many of you following a paleo diet can relate to (and as this Italian-raised girl often blogs about) the old pasta dish is one of the most commonly missed dishes in my home. I grew up on homemade pasta dishes covered in homemade sauces, used as a base for lasagna and nestled in between fresh mozz and ricotta cheeses as a baked ziti.  So when I found out I had to give up pasta, I felt sad and a bit scared; scared of never enjoying my old favorites again. 

And it didn’t take long for me to hop online searching for an alternative pasta once I went paleo and kicked out all grains for good. Soon I discovered many posts about “zuchinni pasta”.  Sliced lengthwise, about one-eighth-inch thick (which you can also do it with a sharp knife, but it’s easier with a mandoline), zucchini ribbons can stand in for regular pasta. (Steam them for a couple of minutes until they’re crisp-tender.)

So when we ran across this paleo, dairy free ‘pasta’ dish on All Against the Grain, we were so excited to give it a test as it meets not only our gluten free, but our paleo needs too. And as Danielle who writes All Against the Grain often does, she was inspired by a similar recipe she found online and tweaked it a bit for her own tastes. 

The version we made at home was slightly different, so you can read her original post here and below for our modified version. 

This tasty little treat is not only grain free, but it’s dairy free as well, and with a quick omission of the prosciutto, it’s vegan friendly too. How perfectly balanced is that?  Food and health in harmony; life is good 🙂


Paleo zucchini “pasta”

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Serving Size: 1 plate

Paleo zucchini “pasta”


  • 4 medium zucchini, peeled and sliced into thin noodles
  • 1 cup asparagus pieces
  • 2 tablespoons virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 cup fresh chopped mushrooms
  • 4 cups boiling water
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 tablespoons chopped basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • dash of pepper
  • Garnish with toasted pine nuts and fresh basil


  1. Steam or pre-boil the zucchini slices until they're slightly tender (about 3-4 minutes)
  2. Heat olive oil in a nonstick pan
  3. Mince cloves of garlic and add zucchini, asparagus and mushrooms together over medium heat until the zucchini softens but isn't mushy.
  4. Add tomatoes and remove from heat.
  5. Garnish with toasted pine nuts and fresh basil.


Alternate options include:

2 ounces prosciutto (omit for vegan and add 1/4 teaspoon salt) 1/2 cup frozen peas (omit if you’d like for Paleo)
Paleo creamy pesto zucchini “pasta”




This morning after dropping my son off at basketball camp I decided to take my laptop over to my favorite coffee shop which happens to be on the lake. Maybe it’s because I grew up near the ocean, or perhaps there’s something to the Aquarian sign thing, but I just love being near the water. I find it really calming; helps me catch my breath now and then and remember to slow down and savor life. 

So as I sit here watching the turtles come up for air, and hearing the water lap against the docks, I’m reminded of how good life is. And that’s important to remember when you find yourself fighting health issues; it’s a challenge at times to refrain from feeling like a victim. From wondering why you are suffering through certain health struggles. Why you find yourself having to live more of a restricted life than others.  

If you’re like me, when you found out you had food sensitivities you were so relieved to know there really was something ‘wrong’ with you, that the first though was of relief that you now know how to start feeling better. Once that passes though, you’re left with a feeling of despair that you can’t ever eat the foods you grew up with. Those which you found comfort in when you were feeling sick (which ironically are probably the ones which made you sick) having somehow been destroying your gut? How can it be that the foods I turned to so often were making me sick?  Apparently the reason behind that is pretty simple; the body releases endorphins (when it’s faced with a food it considers to be attacking it) as part of the “fight or flight” adrenaline rush, so it’s common that the same foods which are actually causing you harm, are also causing a rush of endorphins creating a happy sensation.  Ironic, right?

So as I was grabbing for the saltines, bread and soup for tummy aches, cookies for PMS and pasta for comfort; sound familiar? No surprise really since I grew up with the Italian side of my family as the strongest influence, and had a Nana who would make her own pasta. Our holiday dinners always consisted of a pasta dish alongside ham or turkey, and a salad just wasn’t worth eating without a piping hot roll to go with it. Sound familiar?

And as I sit here today, I’ve not only made peace with my new diet, but I can honestly say that I no longer crave those foods which I used to turn to. I no longer am grateful for the gluten-free baked goods I can find in my local coffee shop because I don’t eat any grains. I learned over the years that I just wasn’t able to eat any grains or dairy if I wanted to be truly healthy, and that without them in my life, I’m so much happier and healthier. So giving them up became just another transition in my life. It’s true what they say; once you eliminate foods which cause cravings (starchy carbs, sweets and allergic foods) your body stops craving them. 

If you’ve recently found yourself diagnosed with a food allergy or sensitivity, or are raising an allergic child, there are many wonderful resources online, and I have quite a few listed on my pages here too. I know it seems daunting now, but I promise you, it will get better. And when you feel like you just can’t go on without that yummy little pastry, I assure you that you can. 

This post is more of a higher level about remaining focused, steady and inspired. I will follow-up with more specific help on living allergy free and Paleo, but for now, I am reminded that inspiration lies within the little things in life. The lapping of the water against the docks. The crickets and birds chirping. The sweet smell of flowers in bloom. Whatever your idea of peace and inspiration is, be sure to stop and notice it as often as possible. 



Optimal Food. Optimal Health. 

For those of you familiar with cleansing, this list will come as little surprise, but may serve as a nice reminder of the most optimal food choices you can make. For those of you not familiar with cleansing, we will be posting a series on cleansing soon, and will tie all the details together, so until then, read on for a list of the most optimal food choices we can make.


Remember that old adage from childhood – GIGO. Garbage in = garbage out.

It applies as much to our bodies and our health as it does to science.  Be sure to feed your body with fuel that will help it heal and thrive!



Sometimes I miss the salty crunch of chips, pretzels or crackers, so when the urge kicks in I turn to these guys; roasted, spicy chickpeas. They’re a tasty, easy to make treat and I typically have all the ingredients in the pantry. I discovered the recipe on What’s Gaby Cooking and I have to admit, I love the warm, spicy, toasty, salty combo! They make a great snack on their own, or as a side dish to your fave main course. 

All you need is 30 minutes, a can of garbanzo beans and some typical household spices. Kick up the heat for those of you with a flair for spicy. Enjoy!



Allergy-free, paleo roasted chickpeas

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Yield: 1 yummy bowlful

Allergy-free, paleo roasted chickpeas


  • 1 15-oz can Garbanzo Beans
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp paprika


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degree F.
  2. Drain and rinse the garbanzo beans in a large colander. Continue to rinse until all the foamy liquid goes away.
  3. Line the counter with a few sheets of paper towel. Place the drained garbanzo beans on top of the paper towel and let them dry for a few minutes.
  4. Once the beans are dried, place them on a parchment lined baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and then sprinkle on the spices. Using your hands, toss the beans around so they are all fully coated.
  5. Place the baking sheet in the oven for 20 minutes and all to roast. After 20 minutes, remove the pan from the oven and give the beans a little shake and then place back into the oven for another 20 minutes.
  6. Season with salt if needed once fully roasted and then serve.

Sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy. Too good to pass up!

I’ve mentioned how much I like this site, Against All Grain, in the past so today I’m showcasing another of her fab recipes which is perfect for summer! As someone who eats a lot of salads, I can tell you I’m excited to give this one a shot.  The idea of combining the sweet and gritty texture of watermelon with arugula and goat cheese is just too tasty to imagine. So while I head out to the store to grab some watermelon, I wanted to throw this recipe up so you can enjoy it in the meantime. 


watermelon salad with arugula, goat cheese & candied walnuts

Yield: 6 servings

Serving Size: 1 individual salad

watermelon salad with arugula, goat cheese & candied walnuts


  • 6 pieces of watermelon, cut to 1 inch thickness
  • 2 cups baby arugula
  • 2 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese (omit Goat Cheese or sub in Vegan cheese for vegan options)
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup Spiced Candied Walnuts, roughly chopped


  1. Using a large biscuit cutter, or just great circle cutting knife skills!, cut the watermelon slices into round circles. Use a knife to trim off any parts that make the circle uneven so it sits flat on a plate.
  2. In a medium bowl, toss the arugula with the mint, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper.
  3. Arrange the watermelon circles on a plate, then top each with a small handful of the arugula mixture (roughly 1/3 cup each).
  4. Sprinkle each salad with goat cheese and the chopped walnuts, then drizzle the balsamic vinegar over the tops.
  5. Enjoy!


* If you’re serving to a larger crowd, or don’t want to take the time to cut the watermelon into rounds, you can use a melon baller to create cute balls or just simply cut the watermelon into chunks and pile it all into a salad bowl.


 Why we love Thunderbird – well, first, we haven’t tasted one we didn’t love! Not only are they handy and allergy-free friendly, they’ve literally saved us from a low-sugar driven faint spell. Well, it wasn’t quite that drastic, but they certainly helped stave off a cranky fit due to hunger pangs. Grab any of their 6+ delish bars and rest assured you will love any of their healthy, allergy-free friendly bars wrapped in eco-friendly wrappers.

I find them super handy to keep in my bags in case I find myself hungry at a sporting event, conference, travels, etc. and that inconvenient hunger pang hits when there are little (if any) allergy-free options around. My fave is the cashew fig because it’s not too sweet, and with the dates as a base, its moist, soft and totally satisfies! But with flavors ranging from Cashew Fig Carrot, Sweet Lemon Rain Dance, Cocao Hemp Walnut to name a few, these bars are sure to please every palette.

Good food, that is good for you and our pretty little planet. How can you go wrong?

In their words: Thunderbird Energetica specializes in creating epic tasting whole food energy bars. Containing uniquely pure and highly powerful ingredients, Thunderbird bars provide consumers with conveniently packaged, nutrient dense, plant-based goodness. Each bar is meticulously handmade using the finest and freshest available whole foods that Mother Earth has to offer.

Thunderbird Bars are 100% soy free, dairy free, gluten free, contain no added sugar energy  and give you the same clean burning fuel humans have enjoyed over the last 10,000 years.

Check out their site and buy some of these amazing bars today!

Last week I read an article on USA Today that Domino’s has announced they are offering Gluten free pizza in some locations, and I thought that was a pretty big deal. Definitely a step in the right direction for those of us who miss our pizza, right? Perhaps….

The company’s new gluten-free crust is made from rice flour, potato starch, rice starch and olive oil.  Domino’s worked with the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness to bring their standards to the company’s employees and kitchens.

“Offering Domino’s Gluten Free Crust is a big step for us, and we wanted to make sure we were doing it right,” Domino’s CEO J. Patrick Doyle said in a statement.“The prevalence of gluten sensitivity has become a real issue with significant impact on consumer choice, and we want to be a part of the solution,” he said.

Although the crust is gluten-free, the company only recommends that those with a mild gluten allergy enjoy the pizza.  It doesn’t recommend the crust for those with Celiac disease because it can’t fully guarantee the product hasn’t come in contact with gluten. This is an important point that made me take notice as most people I know aren’t just a little sensitive to gluten.  In fact, there is little known as to whether someone with Non Celiac Gluten Sensitivity can tolerate small amounts of gluten. I’ve heard some people claim to be able to, however, I know personally I can’t handle any cross contamination, though I lived a lifetime of the damaging effects (wasn’t diagnosed until I was in my mid 30’s) so perhaps my son (who hasn’t eaten gluten since he was 4) would be ok with a little cross contamination here and there. Or perhaps not. I don’t really know. But it’s certainly something I was surprised to see the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness endorse.  Anyway, just beware that you may not fare so well due to cross contamination issues and be careful before you over indulge. 

The pizza costs $12, about $3 more than a regular pie.  One slice of a 10-inch pepperoni pie has 170 calories, 3.5 grams of saturated fat and 410 milligrams of sodium.


National Gluten-free options:

According to USA Today, there are several other national chains now offering gluten-free options (to be honest, there are many  more, which we will start showcasing soon), but these are the ones which they pointed out: 

•Casual dining. P.F. Chang’s, an industry standout with 25 gluten-free dishes, just added seven more to its menu, including Gluten-Free Caramel Mango Chicken and Gluten-Free Asian Tomato Cucumber Salad. It also uses gluten-free soy sauce , which is the key to making these dishes taste as good as conventional dishes, says Dan Drummond, brand director.

•Chips. At Frito-Lay, the most common request on its consumer affairs line is for gluten-free offerings, spokeswoman Aurora Gonzalez says. Frito-Lay has recently begun labeling packaging on more than a dozen chips that are gluten-free with a special “GF” (gluten-free) icon or statement on the back of the bag.

•Subs. Subway has been testing gluten-free products, including bread and brownies, at some stores in four key markets since early 2011, says Tony Pace, chief marketing officer for the Subway brand. Those markets: Dallas/Fort Worth; Portland, Ore.; Tacoma, Wash.; and Duluth, Minn.

•Beer. Also Monday, Anheusher-Busch will roll out Michelob Ultra Light Cider, which is gluten-free. In 2006, it launched Redbridge, the first nationally available gluten-free beer.


So what does this mean?

Well, it’s a sign that things are moving in the right direction for us! We just need to be careful to note the reality of the impact gluten has on our compromised bodies, and how important it is to manage our health. I urge you not to get too excited about the abundance of gluten-free products available to us now; beware of how you’re feeling and take note if you have an adverse response. It took me a little while to realize that cross contamination is sometimes an issue for me; my symptoms are typically gas, bloating, fatigue and headaches. Other responses you may be having are related to cross- reactive issues which I’ve outlined a bit here. 

Because there isn’t a lot of research done on how gluten sensitivity and other food allergies and sensitivities affect us, we are often left to work through this on our own. So if you’re like me, you talk to anyone who is in a similar situation and see how it affects him or her. I hope one day to have a member base here where we can run polls and compile enough data to make a difference and help others like us. So for now, I post articles and my opinions, and I hope they help 🙂 

So please – share your thoughts, opinions, ideas, etc. too! The more we learn about how we each successfully manage our food allergies and sensitivities, the better lives we lead. 

In good health, 




For those of us living a gluten-free life, mastering a tasty, fluffy bread can be a bit challenging. Thanks to one of my fave cookbooks, The Gluten Free Almond Flour Cookbook, this delish bread is a great base for sandwiches, hors d’oeuvres or as a simple tasty snack. You can cut this loaf into thin slices, spread on a baking sheet and toast in the oven at 350° F for 5 to 10 minutes. Spread the resulting cracker with hummus, goat cheese, feta, or drizzled with your favorite olive oil.

The possibilities are endless!