Aldi for the Gluten Free Win!

Gluten Free on a Budget at www.thesoutherninstitute.com
Let me start this post by letting you know that it is not sponsored by Aldi, lol. I promise that no one is paying me to write this. I just want to let you all know when I’ve discovered a good thing… and apparently I’m late catching this train anyway.

I’ve never been an Aldi shopper in the past. There is an Aldi grocery store not 8 minutes from my home, but from where I come from, their reputation is less than stellar, if you know what I mean, so I have always stayed away. When living with a picky “restricted-gluten” eater, such as my six year old son is, you quickly realize that shopping for gluten-free product at the larger chain stores can be quite taxing on the wallet. Over a year or so ago I started seeing pictures on Instagram of several gluten free and (also organic) products that people were buying at Aldi! Imagine my surprise! I had been avoiding the place, but they were selling gluten free and organic foods? Hmmm.

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Still I didn’t go. Clearly I’m a stubborn person.

Fast forward to about a year later and I’m in my friend’s kitchen. She’s showing me all of these gluten free foods that she got at (you guessed it) Aldi. They have an entire line called liveGfree! So, I’m checking out the ingredients and noticing that many of them are even organic, and the majority of them are the same as the ingredients in the more expensive counterparts that I’ve been buying at the bigger chains (ahem, Whole Foods). Now I’m feeling a little bit foolish. I have to check out Aldi now.

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I’m never turning back! Because not only have I found several of the gluten free foods that I buy on a regular basis at much higher prices elsewhere, but I’ve also found things like bacon, kefir, organic frozen berries, cheese, and a few other items that are way cheaper than I’ve been paying! I make gluten free pizza from store bought mixes (cheaper at Aldi) and pancakes from ready made mixes as well (again, cheaper at Aldi), so I decided to try their pizza mix and the family loved the crust. WIN! I have seen our grocery bill come down and I’m happy about it! Last week organic blue corn tortilla chips were on sale for 99 cents per bag!!! Are you kidding me?!?!? I wanted to buy all of them! But I only have very limited space in our kitchen, so I only got two bags. Aldi has me and my husband seriously thinking about purchasing an extra refrigerator so that we can take advantage of sales and stock up on things when they are cheap.

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I love their Simply Nature line of products because they have created a whole line of foods that are free from all of the things that healthy eaters avoid. Consumers are becoming more educated about what is in what they eat and they don’t want to see things such as acesulfame-K, nitrates and nitrites, and high fructose corn syrup in their foods. Simply Nature leaves all of those things and MANY MORE out! Take a look at this list. Are you as impressed as I am?

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Go Aldi! You’ve won me over.

Do you shop at Aldi already? What are your favorite deals that you have found there?

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies (gluten free!)

Cookies, who loves cookies? (Insert wild cheers here) We all love cookies!  Some of us love chocolate chip cookies.  Some of us love peanut butter cookies.  Some of us love oatmeal cookies.  Some of us love all of those rolled up into one delicious cookie.  That’s me!

I have to tell you that I have tried quite a few gluten-free cookies, because we try to reduce the gluten in our diets due to allergies, asthma, and a little bit of eczema in our family.  It really makes a difference.  Well, I have encountered some good gluten-free cookie recipes and some that are not so good.

THESE ARE AMAZING!  

 

So amazing, in fact, that my husband says that they are quite possibly the best cookies I have ever made.  And they are super easy!  If you have a peanut allergy or a family member with a peanut allergy then this is not the recipe for you… I am so sorry.  I don’t know if it can be made without the PB.
Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies 
(recipe adapted from Trader Joe’s rolled oats bag)1/4 cup butter (I use sweet cream organic)
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 cup sugar (I use organic sugar too)
3 cups rolled oats
3/4 cup brown sugar (organic again)
6 oz chocolate chips
2 eggs (not organic, ha ha)
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup peanut butter (Yep, you guessed it… organic)
1/2 cup chopped pecans walnutsPreheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine sugar, brown sugar, and butter in a large bowl.  Beat until creamy.  Add eggs, vanilla, and baking soda: mix well.  Add peanut butter and mix.  Stir in the oats, chocolate chips, and nuts.  Place dough by heaping teaspoons onto a lightly greased cookie sheet, about 2 inches apart.  Bake 10-12 minutes or until light gold on the edges.Makes approximately 48 cookies.  Try not to eat them all in one day.