Daily living with food allergies is tough enough, but during the winter holidays it becomes even more difficult. Most occasions and parties center around food, especially desserts, which are often laden with allergens.
Read on for 12 party-worthy dessert and snack recipes that are so good that no one will know they are especially made for those with food allergies. Of course, before preparing any recipe, you should check product labels and ingredients carefully to be sure they are safe for your particular allergy.
Don't have allergies in your family? A grandma explains why it concerns you, too.
Carrot Cake with Coconut Cream Frosting
Love carrot cake but can’t have the cream cheese frosting? Try this delicious recipe from the
Dairy and Soy-Free Mom blog. Many people who are allergic or sensitive to dairy also can’t have soy, making it difficult to enjoy cake. This recipe offers a party-worthy alternative to regular carrot cake.
Candy Cane Cookies
Nothing says Christmas like candy canes! These cookies are formed by twisting red and white dough together into the iconic candy cane shape before baking. This recipe from the
Food Allergy Mom blog is gluten-, peanut-, and tree-nut-free. You can change up this recipe by using different colors such as red and green or adding a sprinkling of colored sugar.
Naughty and Nice Cinnamon “Rolls”
Having a corn allergy in a world of desserts laced with corn syrup is tough. Here’s a yummy recipe that is not only corn-free, but dairy- and gluten-free as well, from the
Celiac Chicks blog. These little treats are made from a cinnamon coffee cake recipe baked in muffin tins to resemble the shape of cinnamon rolls, then covered in gooey maple frosting. She calls these “Naughty and Nice” because the protein in the almond flour balances out the sugar. Works for us!
Boot Track Cookies
These fun Boot Track cookies will be a hit with kids — whether they have food allergies or not! A chewy, chocolate cookie that is both tree-nut- and peanut-free; this
quick recipe can be mixed by hand and is cooked in a waffle iron. Add a sprinkle of powdered sugar and these boot tracks will disappear as fast as you can make them!
Dairy-, Egg-, and Nut-Free Rugelach
The Food Allergy Mama shares her dairy-, egg- and nut-free
Rugelach recipe for Hanukkah. Rugelach means “little twists” in Hebrew and these filled cookies are often served during the Festival of Light. In this post, you can also see her tutorial for making dairy-, egg-, and nut-free sugar cookies which can be shaped with Hanukkah cookie cutters. Allergen-free cookie decor can be difficult to find as many brands are processed in the same facility with other allergens. Kelly comes to the rescue with her easy instructions for making your own colored sugar.
Amanda, the Nut Allergy Mom, made these yummy
chocolate-dipped marshmallows for Easter, but these could easily make cute Christmas treats. These are large marshmallows dipped in melted chocolate then decorated with sprinkles. Spear the marshmallows on skewers or lollipop sticks and immerse completely in the chocolate, then decorate, cool and then cover in plastic wrap for a cute gift, or just dip the marshmallows halfway for fun finger food. Use sprinkles in Christmas shapes or red and green sugar for a festive touch.
Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Cookies
Going little nuts this holiday season? Peanut butter cookies aren’t traditionally linked with Christmas, but they are definitely comfort food. The
She Knows Blog featured this yummy gluten-free peanut butter cookie recipe on their gluten-free Friday post. You could always add a few holiday sprinkles, or even red and green frosting to glam them up!
Rolo Cake Mix Bars
These chewy cake bars from
Cookies and Cups are made of just four ingredients: yellow cake mix, butter, evaporated milk and Rolo Candy. The butter and cake mix combine to make a crispy crust while the Rolos melt into chocolate caramel deliciousness! Tip: Make sure to spread the bottom layer all the way to the edges of the pan, because the batter does not spread when baked.
What is Christmas without colorful Christmas cookies? When you have an egg allergy, it can be hard to find a sugar cookie that you can eat safely. Rachel over at
We Laugh We Cry We Cook offers the recipe for Miss Vickie’s Sugar Cookies. It is already egg-free and can be made dairy-free by substituting dairy-free margarine. After baking these, you can decorate like a pro with her frosting recipe. These would be perfect for taking to the neighborhood Christmas party or for decorating with the kids.
Pumpkin, Coconut and Apple Pie, Oh My!
Dairy/Peanut/Tree Nut/Egg/Soy/Gluten … etc.-Free!
It is hard to picture a holiday dinner that doesn’t end with a seasonal pie. In this wonderful post by Alicia on the
Go Dairy Free blog, she offers an exhaustive list of allergen-free pie recipes from pumpkin to chocolate silk. All of the recipes are dairy-free, and many are nut-, soy-, egg-, or peanut-free as well. She even includes crust and whipped topping recipes.
Tired of holiday baking but you still need an allergy-free treat to bring to the office Christmas party? How about these no-bake cookies from
Money Saving Mom blog offered this recipe for the World’s Easiest Christmas Candy. This salty/sweet candy is fun to make and give as gifts. That is, if you don’t eat it all first! It’s often called “Christmas Crack” both because it’s made with a base of saltine crackers and because it’s as addictive as, well, you know. It’s so good; they’ll never know it contains no eggs, peanuts, tree nuts or corn.
Cinnamon Chex Swirl
This is an easy, fun snack that is easy to make for the family, yet festive enough for bringing to a holiday party.
Cinnamon Chex Swirl
8 cups cinnamon Chex cereal
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1 cup white chocolate chips
20 candy cane Hershey Kisses
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
Spread the Chex cereal evenly out onto a cookie sheet.
In a microwave-safe bowl, mix one tablespoon of vegetable oil into the chocolate chips. Microwave the chips and oil for twenty seconds, and then stir. Repeat until almost all of the chips are melted, there should be a few small pieces left. Remove from the microwave and continue to stir until all of the chips are completely melted. Microwave times can vary, but this usually takes about sixty seconds total per batch of chips. Repeat with the white chocolate chips in a separate bowl.
Sprinkle the Candy Cane Hershey Kisses evenly over the Chex cereal.
Using a spoon, drizzle the melted milk chocolate and white chocolate chips over the Chex and Kisses.
Refrigerate for thirty minutes, and then put into a serving bowl.
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