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Gluten Free, Casein Free Lunch Ideas and Recipes for Kids with Autism Spectrum Disorder

By Pamela J. Compart, M.D. and Dana Laake, R.D.H., M.S., L.D.N., authors of The Kid-Friendly ADHD & Autism Cookbook: The Ultimate Guide to the Gluten-Free, Casein-Free DietKid Friendly ADHD and Autism Cookbook and, in 2013, The ADHD and Autism Nutritional Supplement Handbook.

Lunch #1: BBQ Chicken for Champions

One chicken breast, cut in half and pan fried in olive oil for 6 minutes a side.
Add salt and pepper. Cut into strips. Serve cold dipped in dipping sauce.
BBQ dipping sauce - ¼ C (put in BPA-Free container)
Veggies: steam broccoli for 7 minutes, run cold water over it (or defrost frozen broccoli)
Place in BPA-Free container
Veggie dipping sauce in BPA-free container
Use: BBQ sauce or honey
Drink: water, GFCF V8 juice, GFCF juice box, fortified organic rice milk box
Snack if needed: GFCF chips & fruity salsa (1/4 C) in BPA-free container
Toy Surprise: Girls: yarn bracelet, Boys: Miniature toy character figure

BBQ Dipping Sauce – ¼ C (put in BPA-Free container)
1 C organic ketchup
1 Tbs lemon
1 tsp Worchestershire sauce (GFCF)
1 Tbs honey
Dash of black pepper
Blend all of the above until smooth
Fruity Salsa
1 C Salsa
1/4 C grape, blueberry or raspberry fruit spread
Mash the fruit spread into the salsa

Lunch #2 DLT (“Deli” meat, Lettuce & Tomato Sandwich)

Turkey or Chicken GFCF Preservative-free organic lunch meats (by Boar's Head, Applegate or Shelton)
Toast 2 pieces of GFCF bread.
Spread w/ 1 Tbs GFCF mayonnaise
Place 2 slices of GFCF lunch meat
Top with lettuce and tomato
Cut into 4 squares
Wrap in wax paper

GFCF Potato Salad 1/3 cup from recipe. Serve in BPA-Free container
Fruit (apple or grapes) – in BPA-Free container
Drink: water, GFCF V8 juice, GFCF juice box, fortified organic rice milk box
Toy Surprise: Hair scrunchie for girl. Baseball card for a boy.
Snack if needed: Peanut butter on rice crackers.

GFCF Potato Salad
Ingredients:
3 pounds potatoes, cooked until just tender, cubed, cooled
Optional: 5 or 6 hard cooked eggs, cooled, coarsely chopped
1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped celery, optional
Dressing:
3/4 cup mayonnaise
1 to 2 tablespoons prepared GFCF mustard
salt and pepper to taste
Preparation:
Prepare the dressing combining the mayonnaise, mustard, and salt and pepper to taste.
Combine.
Combine potatoes, egg, onions, and celery and stir in the dressing.
Serves 6 to 8.

Lunch #3 Kids Favorite Chicken Salad & Deviled Eggs

Chicken Salad 1/3 to ½ C served in BPA-Free container
Deviled eggs (1-2) – served in BPA-Free container
Carrot sticks (wrapped in waxed paper) dipped in applesauce (in BPA-Free Container)
Snack if needed: GFCF chips & hummus in BPA-free container

Drink: water, GFCF V8 juice, GFCF juice box, fortified organic rice milk box

Chicken Salad
Ingredients:
3 cups cooked diced chicken
2 ribs celery, thinly sliced
1 cup seedless green grapes, halved
3/4 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons finely minced green onions
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
salt and pepper, to taste

Preparation: Combine first chicken, celery, and grapes in a large bowl; set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together remaining ingredients; combine with chicken mixture, using as much or as little as necessary to moisten as desired. You may add a little more mayonnaise if you like a creamier salad. Chill and stir again before serving.
Serves 4 to 6.

Deviled Egg Recipe
6 hard-cooked eggs – cooled, shelled, cut in half, yolk removed
1 1/2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon prepared mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish, or to taste
Paprika
Preparation:
Mash yolks and combine with mayonnaise, mustard, salt, and relish. Refill centers of the egg whites with the mixture. Garnish with ground paprika.
Serves 6 (2 halves per person)

Lunch #4 Meatball Spaghetti Sauce

Meatballs in Spaghetti Sauce (1 C) without the spaghetti - served warm in thermos
Wonderful Waldorf Salad: 1/3 to ½ cup
Broccoli trees, cold asparagus or carrot strips dipped in Russian Dressing or honey
(1/4 C in BPA-Free Container)
Snack: Organic GFCF “O”s
Fruit smoothie ½ to ¾ C in cold thermos or GFCF V8 juice, GFCF juice box,
fortified organic rice milk box
Snack if needed: GFCF chips & bean dip in BPA-free container
Toy: Stickers appropriate to the child

Spaghetti and Meatballs
1 small yellow onion
1 slice GFCF rice bread
2 Tbs water
1 teas salt
½ teas oregano
1 pound ground beef
2 jars GFCF pasta sauce

Put onion in food processor and mince. Add bread, water, salt, and oregano and mix again. Pour mixture into a mixing bowl. Knead by hand together with ground beef until thoroughly mixed. Shape into desired meatball size. Put meatballs into a slow cooked with spaghetti sauce and cook for 4 hours. Refrigerate.
Serves: 4 to 6

Wonderful Waldorf Salad Recipe
1 C pineapple chunks (fresh or unsweetened canned)
3 C apples, peeled and cute in ½ inch cubes
1/3 C raisins
1 C carrots, thinly sliced
1/3 – ½ c walnut pieces (optional)
1 C GFCF mayonnaise
Fruit Smoothie
1 ¼ C rice milk
½ glass crushed ice
1 Tbs rice powder
1 Tbs coconut milk (optional)
Add one of the following and blend at high speed until smooth and thick.
1 sliced banana
1 cored and chopped pear
1 handful of berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries or combination
Russian Dressing
1 C GFCF mayonnaise
1 C GFCF ketchup
Servings: 8

Lunch #5 Chicken & Magical Muffins

Baked or grilled chicken (leftovers from dinner) ½ cold chicken breast
Apple salad served in cold thermos
Veggie-Muffins 1 – 2
Fruit smoothie ½ to ¾ C in cold thermos or GFCF V8 juice, GFCF juice box,
fortified organic rice milk box
Snack if needed: Carrots & bean dip in BPA-free container

Apple Salad
2 large Red delicious apples, unpeeled, cored and but into 1 inch chunks
2/3 C crushed pineapple, drained or fresh pineapple minced - reserve juice
1/3 C celery, diced
2 Tbs raisins

Dressing
3 Tbs soy yogurt
2 teaspoons GFCF mayonnaise
1 Tbs pineapple juice
1/8 Teaspoon cinnamon
In a medium bowl, combine the salad ingredients. In a small bowl, combine the dressing ingredients, Pour the dressing over the fruit mixture and stir.

Veggie- Muffins
1 store-bought GFCF cake mix prepared according to package directions- but not baked
Add 1 C pureed vegetables – using one or more of the following:
carrots, squash, peas, green beans
Add 1/2 C applesauce to batter
Option – stir in 1 C GFCF chocolate chips

Mix purees in with the batter, stir in chocolate chips (optional). Transfer the mixture to a muffin pan, filling each cup about two-thirds of the way. Bake at 3750 F for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Do not overcook, as this will result in dry muffins. Once cooled, these muffins can be frozen to be eaten later.
Yields 12 muffins

Lunch #6 Sensory Sensible (for those who avoid “lumps and bumps”)

Pot Pie Muffins (2)
Hummus
Fruit smoothie
Snack: Bean dip

Pot Pie Muffins
1 store-bought GFCF cake mix prepared according to package directions- but not baked
Add 1 C pureed vegetables – using one or more of the following:
carrots, squash, peas, green beans
Add 1/2 C applesauce to batter
Add 1/2 C pureed chicken
Option – stir in 1 C GFCF chocolate chips

Mix purees in with the batter, stir in chocolate chips (optional). Transfer the mixture to a muffin pan, filling each cup about two-thirds of the way. Bake at 375 degrees F for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Do not overcook, as this will result in dry muffins. Once cooled, these muffins can be frozen to be eaten later.
Yields 12 muffins

The above is an excerpt from the book The Kid-Friendly ADHD & Autism Cookbook: The Ultimate Guide to the Gluten-Free, Casein-Free DietKid Friendly ADHD and Autism Cookbook by Pamela J. Compart, M.D. and Dana Laake, R.D.H., M.S., L.D.N. Originally published by Fair Winds Press; November 2006; $24.95 US/$32.50 CAN; 978-1-59233-223-6. Subsequent editions include updates. Reprinted with permission.

Copyright Pamela J. Compart, M.D. and Dana Laake, R.D.H., M.S., L.D.N.

Author Biographies

Pamela J. Compart, M.D., is a developmental pediatrician in Columbia, Maryland. She combines traditional and complementary medicine approaches to the treatment of ADHD, autism, and other behavioral and developmental disorders. She is also the director of HeartLight Healing Arts, a multidisciplinary integrated holistic health care practice, providing services for children, adults, and families.

Dana Godbout Laake, R.D.H., M.S., L.D.N., is a licensed nutritionist in Kensington, Maryland. Within her practice, Dana Laake Nutrition, she provides preventive and therapeutic medical nutrition services. Her practice includes nutritional evaluation and treatment of the full spectrum of health issues affecting adults and children with special needs.