Disclaimer: I partnered with Healthy Living to bring you this information. However, all opinions are my own. A huge thank you to Healthy Living for supporting food allergy families like my own through this, the products they carry every day, and their involvement in Food Allergy Awareness Week this year! All prices mentioned are at the time of this posting and subject to change.
We shop at Healthy Living every week. It’s part of our core, four store repertoire. Until recently, it was known as “the little cart store,” thanks to their kid-sized, basket-holding carts. Ollie’s graduated to calling it Healthy Living and a small part of me feels sad as it’s yet another sign of how fast he’s growing up. I think soon I have to admit to having a preschooler instead of a toddler; I’m not ready for that!
Today I’m going to bring you a full day of allergy-friendly eating with Healthy Living. To be honest, if I had to pick just one store to shop at, this would be it. Given my love of a good deal and the volume Ollie consumes, we do spread our shopping out some, but I’ve been finding us here more and more. Contrary to popular belief, Healthy Living is where I find some of the best deals. I’ll highlight this as I go through the day. Their flier comes out every Wednesday and I am always far too excited to see what’s included. The produce is top notch. It doesn’t go bad nearly as fast as organic produce we buy elsewhere. As far as I know, they’re the only place in the entire state that consistently stocks Ollie’s Tempt Unsweetened Coconut Hemp Milk. A grocery store chain used to carry it and guess what? It was a full $1 more per carton!
This is an easy one. Vermont Bread Company Honey Wheat Organic English Muffins. Here’s where my OCD price comparing comes in handy. These are the exact same price at Healthy Living as they are at grocery stores (if the store even carries our version). I love how much variety these afford depending on how you top them. Savory if spread with avocado or Earth Balance Organic Whipped Buttery Spread. Sweet with jelly or organic Don’t Go Nuts Slightly Sweet Organic Roasted Soybean Spread (not yet available at Healthy Living).
If you have a toddler, you know how important snacks are. I’ve already mentioned the impressive “hangry” level mine can achieve. One of our favorite snacks? Veggies and “walkiemolie,” aka guacamole. Organic green peppers are regularly $2.99/lb and all varieties of bell pepper often go on sale for that price. This makes them less than the 6-pack of conventional peppers at Costco. Ollie has recently become a fan of the bags of organic mini sweet peppers too. We make taco boats with these: cut in half, fill with your favorite ground meat (or beans), top with pico and guac. A few are a great, protein-packed snack and A LOT are a great dinner.
If you have a child with food allergies, you know how exciting it is when they get to have something “normal.” Being that Ollie is anaphylactic to milk, kid favorites like mac & cheese and grilled cheese are somewhat out of the question. Enter Daiya. Most cheese substitutes on the market are nut-based or contain pea protein, which doesn’t work with Ollie’s legume allergy. Daiya Foods makes a few items with potato protein.
We make grilled cheese, which our toddler always calls a panini, with Daiya Deliciously Dairy Free American or Cheddar Style Slices. Usually, I try to pack a bit more nutrition in by adding Applegate Organics Deli Meat, guacamole (mayo is out due to egg), sliced apples, and red onion. More sliced fruits and veggies are served on the side, along with Jackson’s Honest Sweet Potato Chips if we want to add something special. This is probably Ollie’s favorite lunch. I’d tend to agree with him; his dad makes an amazing panini!
We have a new favorite for snack #2 thanks to Ollie’s recent ability to tolerate sunflower oil: MadeGood Organic Chocolate Chip Granola Minis. I like this flavor because it has the lowest sugar content. MadeGood was responsive and detailed when I inquired about what type of sunflower oil they use. We have to make sure it is refined, as it is the heating process that removes the allergenic food protein. Cold-pressed oils typically aren’t safe. We pair the granola minis with So Delicious Dairy Free Unsweetened Vanilla or Plain Yogurt and some organic berries. MadeGood is running great sales for National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month. Stop by on the 19th to try some minis and pick up your own!
If you ask Ollie what he wants for dinner, this is likely the answer: Rising Moon Organic Butternut Squash Ravioli with Muir Glen Organic Tomato Basil Pasta Sauce. We make this even more exciting by adding Go Veggie Vegan Grated Parmesan Style Topping. Rising Moon’s facility is shared with milk and egg products, but after speaking with them and our allergist, we are OK with giving the product to Ollie. Each family of course has to decide what is best based on their own needs. On the side, we have a salad made with Organic Girl Butter, Plus! Lettuce. I often bought organic spinach or mixed greens and found most would go to waste. Butter, Plus! lasts longer, everyone in my house loves it, and it is still high in iron. We top it with whatever veggies we have on hand and some homemade maple balsamic dressing.
This came from a late night chocolate craving of my own (which is basically every night). It’s a healthy, allergy-friendly chocolate “milkshake.” I don’t know exact amounts but we blend frozen banana, So Delicious Dairy Free Unsweetened Yogurt, Tempt Unsweetened Coconut Hemp Milk, cocoa powder, and maple syrup. The result is a delicious, low sugar, chocolate “milkshake” that is actually a great way to increase calcium intake and tricks your body into thinking it’s getting an indulgent dessert.
There you have it. That’s a full day of allergy-friendly eating with Healthy Living. Ollie’s allergens include peanut, tree nut, milk, egg, sunflower, sesame, and all legumes except soy and kidney bean. I know from our food allergy journey that Healthy Living is a great place to shop for gluten and soy free alternatives too. Come say hello on Saturday, May 19th to learn more about food allergies, try some of the allergy-friendly foods I mentioned, support Food Allergy Research and Education, and find your own perfect day of eating with Healthy Living.