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Gluten-Free Holiday Side Dishes

Quinoa mushroom pilaf recipe



Need some gluten-free inspiration for your holiday feasts? 



Have I got some side dishes for you. From Quinoa Mushroom Pilaf to Pomegranate Glazed Green Beans, from Sweet Potato Cornbread to Cranberry Applesauce and more, I've gathered together my favorite gluten-free side dish recipes. One glance at these offerings should convince even the most die hard skeptics that living gluten-free can be more than delicious.

It can be beautiful.





Acorn squash recipe

The newly washed ashore New Englanders of lore might have raised an eyebrow to this kicked up non-traditional recipe for acorn squash spiked with mild green chiles. But what did they know? As H.L. Mencken quipped, Puritanism was the haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy.


Gluten free quinoa salad recipe with pears and chick peas

If you're looking for a fresh idea to liven up your holiday table, Babycakes, this quinoa recipe is for you. Light, vegan, and packed with protein, this is no ordinary side dish. And did I mention, in a bowl licking maple vinaigrette? Studded with nutty, buttery chick peas and crunchy toasted pecans and succulent jewels of ripe, juicy pears, this quinoa dish is truly company worthy.


Roasted acorn squash with maple syrup

My first Thanksgiving side dish way back when, in the old school days, cooking in my twenties, was this simple, easy maple roasted acorn squash. Pure maple syrup makes all the difference. This recipe page also features my family recipe for cornbread stuffing.


Red quinoa recipe with butternut squash and cranberries


This gorgeous quinoa side dish is the go-to recipe if you want to wow your vegan guests. It is drop dead stunning. Colorful. Flavorful. Different. Not your average country squash or T-day stuffing offering. Make it ahead and taste test on the big day to adjust seasonings. Reheat the quinoa and squash in a covered casserole dish till warmed through. (Warning: Your vegetarian guests will fall in love with you.)


Gluten free cornbread stuffing recipe

In case you were snoozing and missed this cornbread stuffing recipe, I'm including it again, here. Make it as moist or as toasty as you like. Serve it in roasted acorn squash halves, or pile it all into a casserole dish. It's all good. For any holiday gathering.


Cranberry applesauce

Add vivid ruby color and a sweet-tart kick to your Thanksgiving plate or Christmas Eve roast dinner, with this gently tangy and sweet applesauce. Very kid-friendly- it doesn't have the texture issue of those pesky whole cranberries.

Thanksgiving potato salad

No doubt about it, people do like their mashed potatoes and gravy, but. You know me. I like to change things up. I crave potato salad year round. Especially this one, featuring sweet potatoes and Yukon golds. The red onion gives the sweet potato a kick in the pants (just say no to mini marshmallows). Serve it warm or chilled.


Sweet potato cornbread recipe that is gluten free

Cornbread is a classic bread to serve with cozy holiday fare. And this one is special. Not only is it gluten-free, it is made with sweet potato puree, giving it a rich, tender texture that is moist and downright fabulous. They will ask you for the recipe.


 Pomegranate green beans side dish

This simple green bean side dish cozies up to a lot of Thanksgiving and Christmas flavors. I used Trader Joe's pomegranate glaze as a base for the easy sauce. It's lip smacking good. So ditch the canned Cream of Mushroom Soup and shake things up a bit. These green beans are fresh, tart, and lively, with a tang that wakes up your taste buds.


Gluten free zucchini bread

Gotta have bread. Yeah, it's not technically a side dish, but. Who's keeping score? A slice of this tender zucchini bread makes any holiday plate just that much more special. And you get to show off a little bit. Because folks will ask you, incredulous, This is gluten-free? Really? And you get to say, Yep. Gluten-free, Baby.


Gluten free mac and cheese recipe

Baked mac and cheese. It's a winter holiday tradition, right? This gluten-free macaroni and cheese recipe is based on my pre-celiac go-to cheesy mac favorite with cheddar cheese. I kicked it up with chopped jalapeƱos and crunchy gluten-free bread crumbs and dressed it up all pretty with halved sweet grape tomatoes.


New Mexico Succotash recipe

Feeding a lot of people can feel intimidating. Here's an easy side dish to help get you through. Zucchini and sweet corn and tomatoes co-mingle with green chiles. It's the New Mexico version of succotash. Make it as mild or as spicy as you like.


Gluten free vegan cole slaw with peanut dressing

Traditional cole slaw is heavy with mayo and in truth, a tad old school. Ho-hum. So why not dress it up with a fresh peanut dressing? You don't even have to mention the change to your guests. Just serve it. Their taste buds will thank you. And thanks is what Thanksgiving is all about, right? Not to mention Christmas. And New Year's Eve... and...


Gluten free rice casserole recipe


Rice is often considered yawn worthy. We celiacs get served rice more than other dish, after all. Next to potatoes. It's safe. It's easy. And it's bland. So why am I including a rice recipe for your holiday menu? Because, Darling Baby, this is not yawn worthy. Or bland. It's full of subtle flavor and texture and goes perfectly with winter squashes and gravies and the ubiquitous roasted bird or ham or broiled salmon... you name it.

TRENDING

Gluten-Free Baking Tips + Substitutions

Need wheat-free gluten-free baking tips? Help is Here. Here's what works- and what doesn't- in quirky Gluten-Free Baking and Substitution Land. From Karina, Gluten-Free Goddess®. Baking Substitutions for Wheat-Free, Gluten-Free and More Notes on GF Flours: Gluten-free non-wheat flours generally fall into three basic weights- light starch, all-purpose medium, or heavier whole grain. A blend of medium and heavy flours with some starch mixed in to lighten, tenderize, and help bind the batter or dough works best, and tastes best (too much starch can result in a gummy texture). Light, starchy GF flours include sweet rice flour, white rice flour, and the ubiquitous gluten-free starches- tapioca starch, cornstarch, potato starch (NOT potato flour, which is whole different animal) and arrowroot starch. Medium flours are akin to 'all purpose flour'- these include sorghum flour, certified gluten-free oat flour, and superfine brown rice flour. If you cannot find sorg

Sweet Potato Black Bean Enchiladas

YES PLEASE.  This award winning budget-friendly Santa Fe inspired vegetarian enchilada recipe is one of those happy accidents that springs from a burst of creative imagination. Or rumbling hunger. In that what-have-we-got-in-the-pantry sort of panic. I was craving the soft and spicy comfort of enchiladas one windy spring night back in 2003, and I had none of the usual suspects on hand (no chicken, or beef, no pinto beans).  But! I had one lovely mother of a sweet potato.  A can of organic black beans.  Some roasted green chiles.  One lonely lime.  And your intrepid Mamacita-Goddess at large thought, Hmmm. Why not? Deliciousness ensued. These wrapped little gems are soft and creamy and a little bit spicy- Just like a certain cook , my point-scoring husband wisecracks. It's the yams, I tell him. Er, sweet potato. I can never tell the difference. Can you? In the end, it doesn't matter.  What matters is how it tastes. And darling, these are so mucho scrumptiou

Gluten-Free Goddess Flourless Chocolate Cake

Ah, flourless chocolate cake. The perfect rich dessert. Forgive the hyperbole. But I just can't help it. This is rich, sexy chocolate deliciousness on a plate. And such an easy recipe, especially if you use a food processor to do the work. Serve this to non-gluten-free folks with no apologies. None. Zip. Nada. And for gluten-free folks? Hand out seconds (we deserve it, don't we?). And the best part is- the recipe is inherently gluten-free and wheat-free. Always has been. No substitutions. No funny stuff. This is the same flourless chocolate cake I've been making for decades. It never contained flour. The only thing I've tweaked post-celiac diagnosis is adding more coffee and vanilla. Just because. And PS: See below why I make this recipe in a food processor- thanks to Bobby Flay. Karina xo

Gluten-Free Goddess Lemon Yogurt Cake

Luscious Lemon Cake So  I've been jonesing for a cake laced with citrus- not too sweet and not too light. A cake with character and heft.  Something akin to a lovely simple cake I remember liking as a child, a store bought bakery cake called Louisiana Ring made by Freihofer's. The cake featured a hint of orange. The day I decided to bake, I did not have oranges in the pantry- but I did have some lemons, organic Greek yogurt, and plenty of blanched almond flour.  And this simple home baked lemon cake was born.  In time for Spring. Love, Karina xo

Gluten-Free Goddess Pasta Frittata with Kale

An Italian Classic - Updated. Today I offer you a simple recipe spun from the magic of leftover gluten-free spaghetti and eggs- a creamy, light frittata. Perfect for the weekend. Or when you're simply too tired to cook. Or you have nothing in the fridge but a carton of eggs, half a bag of kale salad and last night's leftover cooked spaghetti. It's one of those intuitive, spontaneous recipes I've pulled out of thin air, so many times. For dairy-free folks, the "cheese" pictured in this version was a vegan "mozzarella" (my current favorite is Vegan Gourmet). But if you prefer using dairy- select one or two of your favorite Italian organic cheeses. I've also made this yummy dish using goat cheese (and roasted red peppers!), and another time I tried a blend of fresh mozzarella and shaved Parmesan. It's a very versatile recipe. Celebrate Spring. Have fun with it! XOX Karina

Gluten-Free Goddess Quinoa Breakfast Cake

Gluten-Free Goddess Quinoa Breakfast Cake. Tender and sweet. There are some days (okay, I confess) I eat a brownie for breakfast. And not just a brownie. A tender, dark chocolate melt-in-your-mouth  Gluten-Free Goddess Brownie . A brownie to delight in. A brownie to savor. A brownie even gluten-eaters would covet. Is it a nutritious choice? Um, probably not. Except as food for the soul. And sometimes, let’s face it. The soul needs chocolate.  But this morning there was a trendy new box of quinoa flakes perched on the kitchen counter. And a fresh bag of plump seedless raisins nearby. I leaned against the counter's edge and sipped my morning cup of java. I started daydreaming about cake. Maybe a carrot cake. With cinnamon. I knew what I had to do. Quinoa was calling to me. Quinoa (pronounced keen-wa) is a fab ancient faux grain (it's actually a fruit seed) that is high in protein and naturally gluten-free, and lucky for cereal lovers, it turns out quinoa flakes make a satisfying

Gluten-Free Goddess Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

A classic cookie made gluten-free. I suppose you could argue that one oatmeal cookie recipe is enough. I mean, how many oatmeal cookie recipes does a person need? To this I answer, at least two. Why? Well, first you have one with raisins (my oatmeal raisin cookies here ). Raisins give oatmeal cookies that old school chewy sneaky nutrition boost. They're old fashioned and comfy cozy. Kinda like spending one of those Saturday afternoons at your Aunt Martha's house, chillin'. Watching Mr. Rogers and laying on the floor with a pile of coloring books. Coloring outside the lines with a beat up box of Crayolas. Wishing the silver crayon was more than a lonely nub. And right at that nub lamenting moment she'd bring you a plate of cookies. Truth is, I never had an Aunt Martha. But I did have a chain smoking platinum blond babysitter who liked martinis a little too much. Or maybe it was gin and tonic. There was ice in the glass. If I was lucky enough to scro