Crepe Symphony Cafe, A Gluten Free Surprise

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UPDATE: THIS RESTAURANT IS CLOSED.  WE RECOMMEND TRYING THE CREPERIE FOR  GLUTEN FREE CREPES

Downtown Edmonton is started to pick up with some more great restaurants.  A recent opener is Crepe Symphony Cafe on 101A Ave beside the very popular and gluten free friendly Tres Carneles.

Amanda and I have made a few friends during our endeavors with Gluten Free Edmonton, and have been going out for Celiac dinners.  Typically myself and other significant others are the non-Celiac's, but it is a great experience for everyone.  One of our dinners was at Crepe Symphony.  I heard through Twitter that they were working on serving a gluten free crepe.  So I tweeted @CrepeSymphony to let me know when they are ready to serve it up.  It didn't take all that long for Gill from Crepe Symphony to get back to me to saying that he perfected his gluten free crepe.  So I let him know we were coming down, and he was up for the challenge.

Who would of thought The Creperie was going to have competition for gluten free crepes?  And Crepe Symphony was really up to the challenge.  Crepe Sympony is what I would call (and Amanda hates how I use this term so much), but fast casual.  Great food, quick, in a casual environment.  Make sense?  I consider Tres Carneles the same just in case you were wondering.

But back to Crepe Symphony!  Instead of ordering at the counter, Gill greeted us at our table since we were a larger group, and took our orders.  The menu is on the wall behind the counter.  He told us that all of their crepes can be made gluten free except for the meat crepe.  However, he made an exception and said he would make the meat crepe gluten free for us.  Gill said when he makes up the beef on the pan, he tosses in some flour to coat the meat, but he would make a fresh batch for us if we wanted.  So a couple of us did.

They have both savory and sweet crepes a la carte including meat crepes with beef, salmon crepes with cream cheese, chicken and mushroom crepes, and spinach and cheese crepes, nutella banana crepe, strawberry banana crepe, vanilla sky crepe with pears, tropical crepe with fruits, and caramel apple crepes. Each order comes with two crepes.   They also have a variety of salads and soups you can order.

Between all of us I think we had all the crepes but the spinach and cheese.  Monica even ordered the mushroom soup and really enjoyed it.  A couple people had double orders.  I had the meat crepe and caramel apple dessert crepe.  Mmmm.  I snuck a piece of Dani's Nutella banana crepe which was to die for.

Each crepe order is about 7 to 8 bucks and totally worth it.  Amanda wasn't able to join us that day, so we will be back for a visit.  Even if its for a yummy Nutella banana crepe for Amanda because I think that is one of her favourite combinations.

Now to enjoy some of the yummy pics of the crepes.... I usually don't save the pics until last, but I figured I need to save the best for last because once you see these, you'll probably start craving them and want them right away.

Gluten free meat crepe
Gluten free salmon and cream cheese crepe
Gluten free banana and Nutella crepe
Gluten free vanilla sky creme with pears
Gluten free caramel apple crepe
Gluten free mushroom soup

Chicken and mushroom crepe


Crepe Symphony Cafe on Urbanspoon

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Taste of Edmonton Menu 2012

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Image: www.eventsedmonton.ca
This is my yearly post to prepare for you the Taste of Edmonton which runs July 19 to July 28 downtown at Winston Churchill Square.  Taste of Edmonton is probably the festival that Celiacs never think they can go to and enjoy.  Well, think twice, there has been Celiac friendly options at Taste of Edmonton the past few years.  This year will be no different.

There are 14 confirmed Celiac friendly gluten free dishes at Taste of Edmonton this year, and possibly more if you ask the right the questions.

Some of the Restaurants that have gluten free options are:
  • Canadian Brewhouse serving Angus Gold Steak Bites with Steak Sauce
  • The Three Amigos Authentic Mexican Restaurant serving Taco al Pastor with Side of Rice
  • New Asian Village serving Channa Masala & Saffron Rice
  • TZiN Wine & Tapas serving serving Rioja Braised Chorizo with Spanish Bean Salad
  • It’s All Greek To Me serving Chicken Souvlaki
You can check out the Taste of Edmonton menu prior to going. Celiac friendly items are labeled on the menu.  Click here for the menu.

Here are some important tips when visiting Taste of Edmonton:
  1. Make sure to check out the menu prior to going and see if there are other foods not labelled Celiac friendly that you can ask about.
  2. Call the restaurant prior to going to confirm what foods at their booth are gluten free.  It is sometimes too busy and hectic to get a straight answer or it is just temp workers that don't know as much working the booth.
  3. Be aware of the higher chance of cross contamination.  They are preparing the food in a smaller place.
  4. If you are unsure, can't get the answers you are looking for, don't order it!  No point in taking a chance.
  5. If you can, go at non-peak hours, may be less rush and reduce the chances of cross contamination
We have heard mixed reviews in the past about the booths at Taste of Edmonton handling gluten free.  Some have a fantastic times, enjoy great food, and do not get ill.  Some have had quite the opposite.  Amanda went last year and checked out a few of the places.  I know Amanda followed the rules above.  There was one vendor that she knew she could probably eat what was being ordered, but because it was too busy, and the workers seemed to not know 100%, she didn't eat it.  Although frustrating, it made her experience better, because she ended up with tasty food from another booth that she enjoyed.

So enjoy the 2012 version of Taste of Edmonton and eat safely!

Gluten Free Edmonton - A Celiac guide and resource for gluten free information in Edmonton, Alberta

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Gluten Free Pancake Recipe from Scratch

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This recipe was submitted by Melody.  Melody is one of our readers that decided she would like to share this recipe with our users.  I thought this was a great idea because we have only shared gluten free pancake mixes, but never a pancake recipe from scratch.

Here is Melody's gluten free pancake recipe with some insight:

I have a gluten-free recipe I’d like to share.

This one is Gluten-free pancakes that are delicious and cook great like regular pancakes, but they puff up nice and fluffy when they are turned over.

Ingredients

1Cup of gluten-free flour replacement
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 cup soy milk
1 egg
1 tbsp. honey or brown sugar
3 tbsp. vegetable oil or 4 tbsp. melted vegan margarine

Directions

Set your favorite pan or griddle on medium to heat.

Mix dry ingredients in a small bowl, set aside. Mix wet ingredients in another small bowl. Add mixed dry ingredients slowly into bowl with an electric mixer on medium until all the mix is gone. Mix for 2 minutes or until nice and smooth. Let this sit for about 2 minutes to thicken.

Oil your pan or spray with oil spray. Pour desired amount of pancake onto the hot pan. Turn over pancake when bubbles begin to form. Your pancakes should fluff up real nice once they are turned over. You may add blueberries, chocolate chips or any kind of sliced fruit to the pancake after you pour it onto the pan.

This mix makes about 3 medium sized pancakes.

I make these for my daughter a lot because she just loves them.

Gluten Free Edmonton - A Celiac guide and resource for gluten free information in Edmonton, Alberta

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Taste of Nature Gluten Free bars

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I have always loved the Taste of Nature bars. I have tried a variety of their flavors and I'll admit that I do have a few favorites, but of course when offered an opportunity to sample some of these fabulous bars we accepted with big smiles and excitement.

For anyone who hasn't tried or heard of Taste of Nature bars here's a little background info on the products they make. Taste of Nature bars contain only natrual ingredients, contain no fillers, no additives, no artificial flavors or chemicals and they are cerfied organic, gluten free (well, the flavors that do not contain oats are gluten free), low glycemic index, vegan, kosher, dairy free, contain no preservatives, low sodium and non-GMO.

"Everything you see comes straight from nature".

We were sent a fun little gift package of these yummy bars to sample and write about, containing the Brazilian Nut Fiesta, Quebec Cranberry Carnival and California Almond Valley flavors. I have always loved the Quebec Cranberry Carnival the best, but the other two flavors are right up there for my taste buds.

I have often bought my Taste of Nature bars at either London Drugs or Planet Organic and I am always pleased to see other stores carrying such fantastically flavored bars in various flavors. Until we got our sample pack from the company I'll admit I was unaware of just how many flavors of bars they make. Here's the list for those who are curious (in no particular order)

- Brazilian Nut Fiesta
- Argentina Peanut Plains
- California Almond Valley
- Niagara Apple Country (not gluten free because it contains oats)
- Quebec Cranberry Carnival
- Nova Scotia Blueberry Fields
- Canadian Maple Forest
- Caribbean Ginger Island
- Himalayan Goji Summit
- Mediterranean Pistachio Passion
- Persian Pomegranate Garden
- Go Ontario (Coming Soon - also contains oats so not gluten free)

Aside of course from the taste, I really love that these bars are made with natural ingredients that I can read and understand and they are not loaded with sugar and other junk that cause blood sugar aggravation...for me these qualities make up a great product.

Thanks Taste of Nature and please keep up the great work!


Gluten Free Edmonton - A Celiac guide and resource for gluten free information in Edmonton, Alberta

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Its the 2012 Pancake Breakfast Season in Edmonton!

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Previous Celiac Association Pancake Breakfast
Summer time has arrived in Edmonton, and that means it is Pancake Breakfast season here in Edmonton!  Coming from Toronto this was something new to me.  Maybe I just was hanging out with the wrong crowds, but Toronto certainly wasn't big on Pancake Breakfasts.  But I can tell you, Edmonton loves their Pancake Breakfasts and so do I!

Every year at the Kinnikinnick Store, the Canadian Celiac Association Edmonton Chapter and Kinninnick put on the biggest gluten free pancake breakfast in the city (dare I say in the Country! or even the world).  Since Amanda's diagnosis, we haven't missed one. After all, for a small donation, you get a couple perfect giant Kinnikinnick gluten free pancakes, and some treats served up by volunteers and Kinnikinnick staff.  This year the big gluten free pancake breakfast will be on July 21st.  Don't miss out, this one has been getting bigger and bigger every year, and Kinnikinnick plans on shutting down the street to make more room.

For those that haven't tried the Kinnikinnick Pancake Mix, this is a great opportunity to try it out.  I can't believe I haven't written about their mix yet, because we buy it by the tub full.  They always turn out so tasty, moist and fluffy!  You can't go wrong.  I serve it to my parents every time they visit from Toronto and they always ask "So whats Amanda going to eat?  Do you have a different mix for her?"  Always a good laugh.

Anyways, there is some more great gluten free pancake news.  Last year Kinnikinnick served up gluten free pancakes at Capital Ex pancake breakfast at Churchill Square and they must have had great success because they also added a few more.  Way to go Kinnikinnick to spread the gluten free love for the Celiac's!

Here is a list of Pancake Breakfasts for the summer of 2012 that Kinnikinnick will be serving gluten free pancakes:

  • Mayor’s Pancake Breakfast / Capital Ex Pancake Breakfast @ Churchill Square – July 19th (7-10am)
  • Canadian Celiac Association Gluten Free Pancake Breakfast @ Kinnikinnick – July 21st (9-11am)
  • Premier’s Pancake Breakfast @ Leg Grounds – July 24th
  • Heritage Safeway Pancake Breakfast @ Heritage Safeway Location – July 26th (7:30-10am)

Hope you enjoy and check back just in case Kinnikinnick informs me of more breakfasts they will be supporting in Edmonton.

Gluten Free Edmonton - A Celiac guide and resource for gluten free information in Edmonton, Alberta

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Did you know the Chef at Culina Muttart has Celiac?

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We are always up for raising awareness for any places that serve it up gluten free.  Heather Dosman, the Chef De Cuisine at the Culina Cafe Muttart wanted to share with the community that she can, and will accommodate the the gluten free diet.  Here is what she had to say about her gluten free friendly restaurant:

My name is Heather Dosman, I am currently the Chef De Cuisine of the Culina Cafe at the muttart conservatory and I am also a celiac! I just wanted to let everybody know that we have gluten free lunch, brunch and Thursday night dinner options every week. We make our own gluten free bread and are very conscientious when we do have celiac customers order. Although we do have glutenous products in the kitchen our staff is very well versed in proper procedure to avoid cross contamination. We have a gluten free chocolate cake on the menu (which is also egg free, dairy free, soy free and nut free for our fellow celiacs with other allergies). All of the sandwiches on the lunch menu can be made into a gluten free version, and both our house salad, new chophouse salad and soups are gluten free. For brunch I am working on a gluten free banana bread for our banana bread french toast and everything else on the new brunch menu can be made gluten free. The dinner menu changes every week but almost everything we have had on the menus can be adapted to a gluten free version if they aren't already gluten free. And don't worry, gluten free scones and cookies are also on the horizon for our pastry take out counter.

Culina at the Muttart on Urbanspoon


Gluten Free Edmonton - A Celiac guide and resource for gluten free information in Edmonton, Alberta

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Shop Ed's Gluten Free Store in Edmonton (NO LONGER IN BUSINESS)

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Ed's Gluten Free Store closed its doors on June 17, 2012.  Please click here to read the announcement from Ed's via Facebook.

We are sad to see this wonderful dedicated gluten free store close its doors and hope Ed continues to be part of the Celiac community in other ways.

Please be aware there are two other dedicated gluten free stores still open in Edmonton:

Click here for a full list of where you can shop gluten free in Edmonton.


==============

Ed's Gluten Free Store is a fantastic gluten free store to shop at in Edmonton.  We try to make it out to the store every few weeks to see what type of new gluten free products they have!

Source: www.edsglutenfree.com
Store Location:
Suite #103, 9303 - 34 Ave

Edmonton, Ab
780-465-1118
Gluten-free@shaw.ca

Feedback from others supports Ed's Gluten Free Store as one of the best places in the city to shop gluten free. They are well equipped with the knowledge about Celiac and gluten free products.  They also know the products they have very well and can offer suggestions on what to try.  Ed's Gluten Free not only carries the big gluten free brand names such as Kinnikinnick, Glutino and El Peto but also have a wide selection of unique brands not found in regular stores.  They also carry fresh pastries and quiches from La Crema Caffe in St. Albert.

I also recently learned that Ed's Gluten Free Store is expanding and will be opening up in Vancouver!

Have you shopped at Ed's Gluten Free Store?  Let us know what you bought and what you thought of the store!

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First time gluten free chef, Preparing Gluten Free Meals for Celiacs

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Another great guest blog post.  This coming from a friend Eva who contacted me because they were hosting a dinner party for one of their friends that has Celiac Disease.  They had plenty of questions about the gluten free diet, and I was ready to help.  All I asked for in return was a blog post about their experience and the meal they prepared:

I recently invited my girlfriend Laura for dinner in celebration of her 27th birthday. "My friend Lisa is coming into town," she said. "She has Celiac's Disease so everything would have to be gluten free."

I promised her it wasn't an issue but wondered if I'd have to spend money on wheat substitutes and cook with reserve like it was my first time.

My phone was a source of information at the grocery store as I Googled queries like "do Tostitos Restaurant Style Chips" have gluten? (They don't - hurray!) I appreciated the certainty of labels on packaged goods and the gluten-free section in Safeway.

The most informative experience was the dinner itself as I watched Lisa devour every course, use condiments I wasn't sure about and enjoy Betty Crocker Gluten-Free cupcakes which she brought; cupcakes that surprisingly tasted like the real thing.

She survived. I survived. Actually, we more than survived; It was a successful dinner party - even for a first time gluten-free chef.

Here was the menu:
  1. Crab Dip Appetizer
  2. Greek Chickpea Salad
  3. Roasted Potatoes
  4. Gluten-free Bearnaise Sauce for grilled steak & asparagus
Crab Dip Appetizer

Ingredients:

1 Block of Philidelphia Cream Cheese
1 can of crab meat, drained
1 overflowing tablespoon of horseradish sauce
1 teaspoon or so of crushed garlic
1 sloppy tablespoon of milk
Salt & pepper
1/4 wedge of spanish onion
Slivered almonds

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Take out your cream cheese a few hours before you want to make it, mix everything in with it and put it in an ovensafe baking dish that will also serve as a serving dish. Sprinkle slivered almonds on top and bake for 20 minutes.
  3. I separated the dip into two bowls so she could eat Tostitos and her dip wouldn't be contaminated by crackers.
Greek Chickpea Salad

The greek chickpea salad recipe is from right here at Gluten Free Edmonton.

Roasted Potatoes (why not use potatoes as your starch?): 

The Roasted Potatoes recipes is from Allrecipes.com.

Ingredients

1/8 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 large potatoes, peeled and cubed

Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 475 degrees F (245 degrees C).
  2. In a large bowl, combine oil, garlic, basil, marjoram, dill weed, thyme, oregano, parsley, red pepper flakes, and salt. Stir in potatoes until evenly coated. Place potatoes in a single layer on a roasting pan or baking sheet.
  3. Roast for 20 to 30 minutes in the preheated oven, turning occasionally to brown on all sides.
Gluten-free Bearnaise Sauce for grilled steak & asparagus:

The gluten free bearnaise sauce is recipe is from Yummly.com

Ingredients

1/4 cup butter
1 tsp minced onion
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
2 egg yolks (beaten)
2 tbsps heavy cream
1.5 tsps lemon juice

1 tsp tarragon (dried)
1 tsp fresh parsley (chopped)
1/4 tsp salt
1 pinch dry mustard
1 pinch cayenne pepper

Directions
  1. Place butter in a medium glass bowl, and melt in the microwave, about 30 seconds on High. Whisk in the onion, white wine vinegar, egg yolks, heavy cream and lemon juice. Season with tarragon, parsley, salt, mustard powder and cayenne pepper; mix well.
  2. Return to the microwave, and cook for 1 1/2 minutes, or until thickened, stirring until smooth every 20 to 30 seconds.
Gluten Free Edmonton - A Celiac guide and resource for gluten free information in Edmonton, Alberta

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Lay’s Potato Chips first product to be certified gluten free with the Canadian Celiac Association

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The symbol to look for!
www.celiac.ca
Yes it's true! The Canadian Celiac Association (Canadian National Office), now has a certification program and Lay's Potato Chips is the first product to be certified!  Way to go lays and Pepsi Co!

The gluten free certification program will help us, the customer be assured that the product is in fact gluten free and a trusted product of the Canadian Celiac Association.  This is great news for the 1% of Canadians that have Celiac Disease.

The Canadian Celiac Association however wants you to know that their program can still not guarantee the product to be safe, but allow the consumer to be more confident that the manufacturer has minimized the possibility of gluten contamination.

Click here to read more about the gluten free certification program by the Canadian Celiac Association.

Read more about which Lay's Potato chips are certified to be gluten free.

Gluten Free Edmonton - A Celiac guide and resource for gluten free information in Edmonton, Alberta

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Gluten Free Spaghetti with Shrimp, Lemon and Garlic Sauce

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Andean Dream Quinoa pasta found at Winners/Home Sense
Lately Amanda has been wanting to be adventurous with the recipes we try.  She really has been on a binge to try something new, so off she went through our cook books.  She loves America's Test Kitchen, and wanted to check out America's Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook, and found a Spaghetti with Shrimp, Lemon and Garlic recipe that was easily convertible to gluten free.

Looking at the recipe, I knew it was going to be pretty easy to make, and it was!  I looked at the ingredients and i was surprised at some of the combinations of ingredients, and was like "really?", but hey, it works and it tastes great.

Shrimp, lemon, and garlic sauce
Ingredients:

  • 1.5 tsp olive oil
  • 1 onion minced
  • 6 garlic cloves minced (I used 4, and the pre minced stuff)
  • 1.5 tsp fresh thyme or .5 tsp dried
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • 1.5 cups low-sodium chicken broth (always remember to check ingredients)
  • 1.5 cups of clam juice (we didn't know where to find this either, and found it where the tuna is)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1.5 tbs of corn starch
  • 1.5 tbs of water
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemons
  • 2 tbs light cream cheese
  • 1 pound shrimp cleaned and peeled (we used frozen already cooked shrimp and just added them at the end)
  • 12 ounces of pasta.  We used gluten free quinoa spaghetti found at Winners.  You can also find quinoa spaghetti at Kinnikinnick or Ed's Gluten Free
  • 2 tbs fresh chopped parsley
Finished meal with gluten free garlic bread using
Kinnikinnick hot dog bun
Directions:
  1. In a skillet, heat up the olive oil and brown the onions until soft for about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the garlic, thyme and pepper flakes and stir for 30 seconds
  3. Whisk in chicken broth, clam juice and bay leaf and simmer stirring occasionally for 10 minutes.
  4. Mix the corn starch with the water until dissolved and add to sauce and simmer for 2 minutes until thick.
  5. Take off heat and stir in lemon juice and cream cheese
  6. Stir in shrimp and cook through until pink, or if already cooked just stir in and get ready to serve.
  7. Season with salt and pepper.
  8. While making the sauce, cook your pasta.  The pasta should take just as long to cook as the sauce.
  9. Mix in sauce and pasta and stir in parsley.
  10. Keep some pasta reserved water to loosen up sauce if needed.
Want more recipes like this?  Click the link below to buy the book.





Gluten Free Edmonton - A Celiac guide and resource for gluten free information in Edmonton, Alberta

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Gluten Free Spring Rolls in Edmonton

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One of our avid readers wrote in about gluten free spring roll she found in Edmonton.  We have not tried them yet, but she has been ranting and raving over them saying most of her co-workers order from this wholesale place along with her.

They apparently will sell for .22 each with no minimums.  We suggest calling in an order, and I am sure bulk orders are appreciated by them.

Emperor Food
Manufactured by Asian Food
11048 107 Street
Edmonton, AB
780-905-8268

Update June 2012
These gluten free spring rolls can now be found at T&T Markets in Edmonton.  Signs in the store list it as gluten free.  Please be aware that T&T Markets are now owned by Loblaws.

Let us know what you think about these.  The package is labelled wheat free, gluten free and MSG free.

Gluten Free Edmonton - A Celiac guide and resource for gluten free information in Edmonton, Alberta

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Kettle Cuisine makes fantastic soups!

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Update June 2012
Kettle Cuisine has discontinued  their individual frozen soups sold to consumers and will only be managing their gluten free soups for the food services industry.  Click here to read more about from Kettle Cuisine.


We have written about Kettle Cuisine individual portion, frozen gluten soups in the past. This fabulous company contacted us recently and offered to send us a variety of their awesome soups to sample and share our feedback.

As noted in my previous post, I was already a super fan so this was an ideal situation in my eyes. Who wouldn't jump at the chance to sample more flavors of their soups, especially knowing the I already loved their gluten free Chicken Noodle soup.

Although we haven't yet tried them all, here's a list of the Kettle Cuisine soups that we were sent to sample:
- Chicken Noodle
- New England Clam Chowder
- Angus Beef Steak Chili with Beans
- Three Bean Chili
- Tomato Soup with Garden Vegetables

They also make other gluten free soups such as Chicken Chili with White Bean soup, Organic Mushroom and Potato soup, Roasted Vegetable soup, Southwest Chicken and Corn Chowder, and Thai Curry Chicken soup.

I tried the Angus Beef Steak Chili with Beans and Abisaac tried the New England Clam Chowder. Both soups were loaded with flavor, perfectly seasoned (not too salty like many soups tend to be) and a great size for lunch. We both thoroughly enjoyed the soup, though this came as no surprise given our previous experience with the soups from Kettle Cuisine. (insert photos)

For those who do not know, Kettle Cuisine "offers ten chef-inspired varieties that are all natural and all gluten free. Our soups, chilis, and chowders are available in convenient, single serving bowls and can be found in your grocer's natural food freezer with other healthy frozen meals."

Where can you find Kettle Cuisine?
Email us at info@glutenfreeedmonton.com if you find Kettle Cuisine in another store near you.

Gluten Free Edmonton - A Celiac guide and resource for gluten free information in Edmonton, Alberta

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