Hi and welcome back.
I hope you are okay and staying safe in these turbulent times. It has been a very unsettling environment lately and it can be hard to stay focused on finding simple meals. Today I thought I would share some quick and simple meals for you to enjoy. I know finding gluten free foods in the Supermarket can be challenging so instead of bulk buying gluten free foods, which will only make others lives more difficult, I decided to simply buy a few cupboard staples which I can use to make many different meals. I have created these 5 meals from easy to find ingredients and they can be adjusted according to your needs. These meals can be created in under 30 minutes, require limited ingredients and are much healthier than a tin of baked beans – I promise! I hope you enjoy. C. -x-
So what do you need?
So, what cupboard staples do you need to create these meals? I have selected basics which should be in your cupboard anyway but if not, use what is on hand.
- Jacket Potatoes.
- Gluten free pasta.
- Tinned tomatoes/ passata/ tomato puree.
- Tinned kidney beans/ baked beans, tuna.
- Fresh, frozen or tinned: peas, sweetcorn, carrots.
- Herbs and spices: salt, pepper, oil, chilli, mixed herbs, garlic.
- Sauces: mayonnaise/ salad cream/tomato sauce.
So what are the meals?
1. Jacket Potatoes
Such a simple meal and so versatile too! I love how quick and affordable this is as well as being naturally gluten and dairy free (depending on your toppings). To avoid wasting food, I spent Sunday bulk cooking 4 jacket potatoes in the oven. I simply drizzled them in olive oil and salt and baked in a pre-heated 180 degrees Celscius oven for 40 minutes until the potato was soft and the skin was crispy. Once cooled, I transferred them to pots and froze them. Now, when I need a quick meal I can cook one in the microwave for 5 minutes and add toppings. I love adding a tuna sweetcorn combo.
This meal is so simple to make but can be difficult getting the ingredients. You can always buy tins of soup but I find they are very expensive and difficult to find. If you can, why not try my Gluten Free, Dairy Free Pea and Broccoli or Leek and Potato Soups? They are made with few ingredients and can be frozen to enjoy at a later date if needed. Perfect for cooler nights or a heart lunch. I enjoy mine with a slice of toasted gluten free bread.
3. Pasta Salad
Ah. Pasta. The classic cupboard staple. Stores are currently limiting customers to only 2 bags of pasta to restrict shortages. If you are struggling to find gluten free pasta, speak to your doctor or pharmacist for help. Pasta is such a versatile dish and something I can enjoy for dinner one night and have leftovers for lunch the next day. It took me a while to get used to cooking gluten free pasta, but now it is a basic in my diet. I love how you can vary it up with only a few ingredients. Finding gluten free pasta sauces can be a challenge but you can make an amazing base for dishes using my Gluten Free Easy Tomato Sauce; its dairy free too! I use this sauce for bases for my pasta bakes, if I am having Spaghetti Bolognese or just with a sprinkling of chilli and garlic for a simple meal.
4. One Pan Rice Meals
Rice is another one of those basic meals that I reach for all the time. I love the versatility of it. My favourite has to be Risotto Rice and you can find my recipe here if you want to try it out. If you don’t have this rice on hand, you can make an amazing dish with few ingredients. Why not try it out tonight?
- 200g rice.
- 300ml chicken stock (or vegetable stock if you would prefer).
- (optional 2 chicken fillets).
- 1 tbsp olive oil.
- 1 onion.
- 1 tin tomatoes.
- 50g sweetcorn.
- 50g peas.
- 2 teaspoons: salt, pepper, chilli, garlic powder, mixed herbs.
- Add 1 teaspoon of each spice to a bowl and mix.
- Heat the oil in a large pan on medium heat.
- Add the chicken to the spice mix then cook for 2 minutes on each side or until golden.
- Set chicken aside.
- Add onions and remaining spices to pan and cook on low heat until soft.
- Add the stock, tomatoes, peas, sweetcorn and rice to the pan and cover pan.
- Simmer for 20 – 25 minutes.
- Add cooked chicken and cook for a further 5 minutes.
5. Potato Bake
Last but not least, the humble potato comes back again. I love how many dishes can be created from the humble spud. I generally buy a bag or all purpose potatoes and use the smaller ones for my soups, the larger ones for my jacket potatoes and the other ones for home made chips or potato bakes. This recipe is coming next week so stay tuned!
So there you go! 5 quick and simple meals that won’t cost you a fortune, can be adjusted to your own preferences or requirements and are gluten and dairy free. Why not try adding jalepenos to the Rice Meal or sliced peppers to the pasta dishes? I hope you found these recipes helpful and made you feel slightly less worried about meal times during the Corona Virus. If you re-create any, please let me know by sharing photos directly to my Facebook Page or by tagging me on Instagram using #livingcoeliac.
Speak to you next week. Stay safe until then.