Friday Favorite: Naked Edge Snacks Veggie-Go’s

February 26th, 2015

Naked Edge Snack’s Veggie-Go’s could quite possible be the absolute best snack-on-the-go.

Portable, tasty and full of all things good, Veggie-Go’s make you feel good about snacking.

Veggie-Go’s are similar to a fruit strip but are made from whole, organic fruits & veggies. They are also gluten-free, Non-GMO and certified organic.

The flavors are unique and tantalizing. Perfect for adults, but loved by kids too. My favorite is the Sweet Potato Pie, a sweet blend of Sweet potatoes, apples and spices, that reminds me of Thanksgiving Day. Other flavors offered are: Mountain Berry Spinach, Cinnamon Spice Beet, Carrot Ginger, and the newest addition, TropiKale, a delicious marriage of tropical fruits of kiwi, guava and mango with nutrient-dense kale, pumpkin, and apple.

Cheers and congratulations for Naked Edge Snack’s Veggie-Go’s for being awarded this week’s Friday Favorite on BeFreeForMe.com!

Win-It-Wednesday: Urban Raccoon Snack Bars… Because good things come in small batches

February 24th, 2015

Good things do indeed come in small batches. An example of this is Urban Raccoon snack bars. These bars only contain high-quality, good-for-you ingredients that are only made in small batches – unlike most gluten-free snack bars made by larger corporations.

Urban Raccoon snack bars are gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, GMO-free and vegan. They are made with organic amaranth and blended with only finest & natural ingredients, such as nuts, chia seeds and fruit.

And the flavors of Urban Raccoon snack bars are mouth-wateringly delicious: Peanut Chocolate, Banana Chocolate (my favorite!), Coconut Chocolate, Cherry Chocolate Chia, Cranberry Maple Almond and the limited-edition and special order, Apricot Cherry. Three of flavors (Peanut Chocolate, Banana Chocolate, & Coconut Chocolate) are made with organic coconut nectar, a lower glycemic natural ingredient binder that is essentially the sap of the coconut tree... Yet another example of using only the highest quality and natural ingredients.

Ohhh… and another thing I love about Urban Raccoon is the “back story” of how it started!  The founder of Urban Raccoon Bars, Brad Indoe, originally started the company out of the personal need for better tasting and better for you gluten-free snack bars. Being gluten-intolerant, Brad wanted a bar that he could bring along with him to work, the gym, and when he traveled. However, the bar needed to be nutritious, satisfying and tasty. However, all the bars that he tried were massively produced “cookie-cutter” bars made by huge conglomerates that contained non-nutritious ingredients and cheap ingredients like rice products. As a result of Brad’s need (as well as every other gluten-free person out there!), Urban Raccoon was founded. Thank you, Brad. =)

And to make the story even super-cooler, the maple syrup used in the Cranberry Maple Almond flavor is from Brad’s family’s farm!

And lucky for us, Urban Raccoon gluten-free snack bars is sponsoring this Win-It-Wednesday on BeFreeForMe.com!

A total of two (yes, 2!) BeFreeForMe.com members will be randomly selected to win a prize pack of these small-batch, nutritious and tasty snack bars.  One (1) winner will be randomly selected from the entries received before Tuesday, March 3, 2015 at 11:59 PM EST, and one (1) more winner will be randomly selected to win from the entries received between Wednesday, March 4 and Tuesday, March 10, 2015 at 11:59PM. SO – make sure you enter two times to win!

How can you win?

Easy!

Reply to this blog and tell us what Urban Raccoon snack bar looks the best to you!

Good luck, keep it healthy & tasty… and, as always …

Be Free!

Win-It-Wednesday: Bello Treats – Brigadeiro

February 10th, 2015

There is nothing better than a Valentine Day gift that is handmade with love. A gift that is overflowing with love and sweetness. A gift that is made from the heart – and it shows.

Bello Treats is a sweet that is perfect for a gift for your sweetie, or even bought for yourself. Perfect for gifting, or even an everyday indulgence, Bello Treats are gluten-free and have no additives, preservatives and contain high-quality, yet simple, all-natural ingredients.

Discovering Bello Treats has been one of my best gluten-free finds in a long time. Handmade with love by Amanda Bellone, these treats originally pop into my gluten-free radar when discovered at my local farmers market.

Amanda is a Brazilian native and created Bello Treats to introduce her beloved authentic Brazilian Brigadeiro. Commonly known as “brigs”, Briigadeiros (pronounced: bree-gah-day-ro) are a traditional Brazilian treat that’s found at most parties, bakeries and grocery stores in Brazil.

These creamy, silky and soft fudgy treats are to die for! Made with sweetened condensed milk,  a touch of butter, and  Belgium chocolates and other fresh ingredients such as fresh shredded coconut or walnuts, these treats melt in your mouth. Creamy and rich, it’s difficult to eat just one.

These delicious treats are true masterpieces. Hand-crafted in small batches, these artesian-style confections are the gourmet answer to satisfy any sweet tooth. My favorite variety is the Happily Married, a soft and creamy milk chocolate andwhite fudge. But other yummy flavors include the Coconut Kiss, topped with shredded coconut; Almond, topped with shredded almonds; Carnival, a kid’s favorite featuring colored chocolate sprinkles; Fun Chocolate Chip, smothered with chocolate chips, and the Traditional Brig, milk chocolate fudge with chocolate sprinkles.

And lucky for us, just in time for Valentine’s Day, Bello Snacks is sponsoring this Win-It-Wednesday on BeFreeForMe.com.

A total of two (yes, 2!) BeFreeForMe.com members will be randomly selected to win a prize pack of these oh so delicious treats.  One (1) winner will be randomly selected from the entries received before Tuesday, February 17, 2015 at 11:59 PM EST, and one (1) more winner will be randomly selected to win from the entries received between Wednesday, February 18 and Tuesday, February 24, 2015 at 11:59PM. SO – make sure you enter two times to win!

How can you win?

Easy!

Reply to this blog and tell us what variety of Bello Treats looks the best to you!

Good luck, be sweet… and, as always …

Be Free!

Friday Favorite: Mamma Chia – Chia Squeeze

February 5th, 2015

This week’s Friday Favorite is a fun snack that is in a portable pack… Mamma Chia’s Squeeze.

This squeezable snack is easy to love. This all natural snack is packed with organic chia seeds, fruits & vegetables resulting in a snack pack that is perfect for everyone – of all ages. Chia Squeezes are also packed with fiber, protein and 1200 milligrams of essential Omega-3s. They are also only 70-80 calories per pouch and not only gluten-free, but vegan too.

They come in a variety of flavors including Strawberry Banana, Apple Cinnamon, Mango Coconut, Blackberry Bliss, Wild Raspberry, and my favorite, Green Magic – a magical blend of Chia, Bananas and Mangos, blended with Kale, Spirulina and Chlorella…. Delicious!

All these healthy, tasty and convenient reasons are why this week’s Friday Favorite is awarded to Mamma Chia’s Chia Squeeze. Congratulations!

Friday Favorite: So Delicious Cookie Dough Frozen Dessert Ice Cream – Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free

January 29th, 2015

When you hear the words “Cookie Dough Ice Cream” you imagine an ice cream that is packed with gluten and dairy. Now… thanks to So Delicious you can enjoy one of our favorite ice cream flavors FREE of these two culprits.

The So Delicious Cookie Dough “Ice Cream” is vanilla coconut based and packed with cookie dough chunks and chocolate shavings. I love eating it on a gluten-free ice cream cone, or in a bowl drizzled with chocolate sauce. And if the Cookie-Dough flavor is not your thing, So Delicious also has other gluten and dairy free varieties such as Cherry Amaretto, Chocolate, Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl, Green Tea and Pomegranate Chip and Coconut.

This week’s Friday Favorite is awarded to So Delicious because they let all of us gluten and dairy free folks satisfy our cookie-dough cravings. Thank you SO Delicious!

Win-It-Wednesday: We’ve gone Crackers! Enter to Win our Favorite Brands

January 27th, 2015

This week’s Win-It-Wednesday is in honor of the upcoming Super Bowl Sunday show-down coming up this weekend! The Super Bowl is all about football, and let’s face it… snacking!

Some of our favorite snacks over here at BeFreeForMe are dips and spreads. Sure, we are able to smear and spread these dips on carrot and celery sticks, but gluten-free crackers are so much better. And three of our favorite gluten-free cracker brands will be included in the prize pack for this Win-It-Wednesday compliments of BeFreeForMe.com

What are these three brands? Blue Diamond Nut-Thins, Mary Gone Crackers, and Mediterranean Snacks Hummuz Crackers. All of these brands are gluten-free and found in most larger grocery stores.

Blue Diamond Crackers are loaded with nutritious almonds (or pecans) and are baked to a crispy crunch. With 2-3 grams of protein per serving, these crackers are my favorite with cheese and crackers or paired with our Pimento Cheese Dip. My favorite flavor? The traditional Hint of Sea Salt.

Mary Gone Crackers are not only gluten-free, but also organic, non-GMO, soy free and vegan. These whole grain crackers come in a bunch of flavors that can tantalize any taste-bud. One of our go-to favorites snacking combos is the Hot & Spicy Jalapeno Mary Gone Crackers with our Layered Mexican Dip.

Last, but not least, are Mediterranean Snacks Hummuz Crackers. Made with real Garbanzo beans, these crackers pack a healthy protein punch. I love the Olive Tapenade Hummuz Crackers paired with our Goat Cheese & Olive Spread, or our Feta Cheese Dip. These crackers are a must try!

All of these wonderful gluten-free snacking ideas make this week’s Win-It-Wednesday a delicious reason to enter to win!

A total of two (yes, 2!) BeFreeForMe.com members will be randomly selected to win a variety prize pack of these crackers! One (1) winners will be randomly selected from the entries received before Tuesday, February 3, 2015 at 11:59 PM EST, and one (1) more winner will be randomly selected to win from the entries received between Wednesday, February 4 and Tuesday, February 10, 2015 at 11:59PM. SO – make sure you enter two times to win!

How can you win?

Easy!

Reply to this blog and tell us what gluten-free cracker is YOUR favorite (is it one of the three listed above… or do you have another favorite we need to know about?)

Good luck, it’s ok to be a little crackers…  and, as always …

Be Free!

Win-It-Wednesday: Popcorn Indiana… Perfect Snacking – Gluten-Free Style

January 13th, 2015

Snacking. Snacking. Snacking. I love the word. I love the way it sounds, and what it means. There’s nothing like a good snack to hold your hunger over between meals. But often it is hard to find a good healthy, tasty AND gluten-free snack.

That is why I love Popcorn Indiana. And in honor of National Popcorn Day on Monday, January 19th (yes… this truly is a nationally recognized day!) this Win-It-Wednesday is all about a popping good and a-maize-ing snack… Popcorn Indiana.

Popcorn is a good for you snack. It is a whole grain, and compared to most snack foods, low in calories. And with the knock-your-socks off flavors that Popcorn Indiana offers it is one heck of a super tasty snack too!

And the best part is that Popcorn Indiana’s popcorn is gluten-free including their Classic popcorn varieties (which include American Cheese, Caramel, Kettle Corn, Move Theater, Aged White Cheddar, Cinnamon Sugar, and Sea Salt and the newest varieties, Hatch Chili Cheese and Sriracha); The Fit Popcorn variety each with only 37 calories per cup and Biggest Loser Approved (Sea Salt, Olive Oil, Parmesan & Herb, and Real Butter) and the Limited Edition Drizzle popcorn, since what goes better with popcorn than chocolate (Black & White Chocolate Drizzle, Dark Fudge Sea Salt Caramel, Dark Fudge Chocolate Chip or Chocolate Peanut Butter)?

I am so excited that this week’s Win-It-Wednesday sponsor is the healthy and tasty Popcorn Indiana! A total of two (yes, 2!) BeFreeForMe.com members will be randomly selected to win a variety prize pack of Popcorn Indiana! One (1) winners will be randomly selected from the entries received before Tuesday, January 20, 2015 at 11:59 PM EST, and one (1) more winner will be randomly selected to win from the entries received between Wednesday, January 21 and Tuesday, January 27, 2015 at 11:59PM. SO – make sure you enter two times to win!

How can you win?

Easy!

Reply to this blog and tell us which Popcorn Indiana flavor looks the best to you! (Me? I love the sweet Cinnamon & Sugar and the savory Fit Olive Oil!)

Good luck, Happy National Popcorn Day and, as always …

Be Free!

P.S. Want to keep poppin’ with the lastest and greatest over at Popcorn Indiana? Make sure you follow them on their Facebook Page and Twitter page!

Friday Favorite: evol foods Street Tacos

January 8th, 2015

Eating at food trucks at lunchtime has become quite the craze over the past few years. The gourmet foods that are prepared in these roaming food trailers can be unbelievable… gourmet specialties served by some of the hippest chefs in the city.

If you want the taste and flavors of these food trucks right in your very own home or office, check out evol foods new Street Tacos. Found in the freezer section of your local grocer (I found mine at Target) the Street Tacos can be whipped up in minutes flat… and rival any fancy-dancy food truck out there.

I love the ease of preparing the tacos and the flavorful sauce pouches that come with each package. They are also packed with protein (8-15 grams per serving) and contain healthy all-natural ingredients. They have three (certified) gluten-free varieties: Uncured Bacon, Potato & Poblano Peppers with a pouch of Chipotle Crema; Shredded Chicken & Caramelized Onions with a pouch of Ancho Crema, and my favorite, Sweet Potato, Black Bean & Goat Cheese with a pouch of Salsa Verde.

Being able to enjoy fast & tasty food…. Every day and any time (not just when the food truck decides to show up!) are the reasons why this week’s Friday Favorite on BeFreeForMe.com is awarded to evol foods. Congratulations!

Win-It-Wednesday: SamMills Gluten-Free Pasta

December 30th, 2014

It’s the start of the New Year and many folks are looking for new and exciting budget-friendly dinner ideas. One of my favorite ways to make a delicious dinner-on-a-budget is by using gluten-free pastas made by SamMills.

SamMill’s Pastas are made from corn. They are available in most grocery stores and come in tons of different pasta shapes… some of my favorite include Penne Rigate, Tubetti, Lasagna Corte, and Bucatini.

The SamMills Pastas are also made of 100% Natural Ingredients, are free of dairy, eggs and gluten, and are low-glycemic, GMO Free and Kosher Pave. I also love that most of pastas cook-up in about 10 minutes, so dinner can be served in a jiff.

And if you are looking for some inspiring gluten-free pasta dishes to start off this New Year check out some of our favorite pasta recipes on BeFreeForMe.com:

Gluten-Free Pasta with Brussels Sprouts, Pancetta and Olives

Gluten-Free Rotini with Red Bell Peppers, Fresh Mozzarella & Arugula

Blackened Red Pepper and Chicken Pasta Salad

Spaghetti with Toasted Pine Nuts, Olives and Parmesan

All of the delicious pasta recipes that await being made are the reason I am so excited that this week’s Win-It-Wednesday prize is SamMills! A total of two (yes, 2!) BeFreeForMe.com members will be randomly selected to win a 4-pack prize of one of my favorite SamMills Pastas… the Bucatini… and for those of you that haven’t tried Bucatini yet… you must give it a try! It’s a thick spaghetti-like pasta with a hole running through the center… perfect for pestos, tomato based sauces and casseroles!

One (1) winners will be randomly selected from the entries received before Tuesday, January 6, 2015 at 11:59 PM EST, and one (1) more winner will be randomly selected to win from the entries received between Wednesday, January 7 and Tuesday, January 13, 2015 at 11:59PM. SO – make sure you enter two times to win!

How can you win?

Easy!

Reply to this blog and tell us which SamMills Pasta product looks the best to you! (Is it the traditional Spaghetti, Ziti or Penne? Or maybe the more adventurous Quadrati or Lasagna Corti?) =)

Good luck, here’s to a healthy, happy and delicious New Year… and as always,

Be Free!

Holiday Gift Idea: Gluten-Free Crunchy Chex Snack Mix

December 22nd, 2014

Eeeekks! Christmas week is here… and if you’re like me you’re still looking for those “little something” gifts that you bring to holiday parties and have on hand for last minute gifting.

My Crunchy Chex Snack Mix is the perfect hand-made gift. By giving just the key ingredients and having the recipient make the snack mix themselves by adding melted butter, the shelf-life is longer than giving a prepared mix. However, you can also prepare the mix in entirety and give the snack mix “ready-to-eat” if you want too!

This single-serve snack idea has a cute-as-a-button presentation. It’s great for anyone on a gluten-free diet  since it’s simple to prepare and enjoy in an office, dorm room, or even right at home.

The only extra two things your gift recipient will need to make this salty snack is 1 ½ tablespoons of butter (or margarine, or butter substitute). So it is quick, easy and convenient. To make things easier for the recipient for when they make the mix, you can even include the parchment paper which is needed to cool the snack mix after its been microwaved – just roll the parchment and tie it with the twine on the outside of the mason jar. Anyone you give this gift to will appreciate your crafty thoughtfulness the next time a snack attack creeps up. Enjoy and happy gluten-free gifting!

Gluten-Free Crunchy Snack Mix

Supplies Needed:

Four (4) pint sized mason jars (I painted the tops for a more finished & festive look… but not necessary)

Four (4) snack sized ziplock bags, or small zip-top bags found in a craft store

Optional: Four (4) 20” lengths of Parchment paper (I used unbleached – I like the color better!)

Twine

Four (4) shipping tags for writing directions for preparation on the back… and a cute note on the front … I like “For Gluten-Free Snack Attacks” =)

Ingredients Needed:

1 ½ cup Corn Chex

1 ½ cup Rice Chex

1 cup mini gluten-free pretzels

½ cup corn nuts (Check label for allergens)

¼ cup salted peanuts (omit if concerned with a nut allergy)

½ teaspoon (heaping) garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon (heaping) chili powder

1/4 teaspoon (heaping) black pepper

1/4 teaspoon (heaping) of Mrs. Dash Lemon-Pepper Seasoning

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon (heaping) of paprika

1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Directions:

In a large mixing bowl combine the first five (5) ingredients. Toss gently to mix and distribute evenly in the four (4) mason jars, being careful to include the peanuts and corn nuts (which may fall to the bottom of the mixing bowl) into each jar. Leave about ½” on the top of each jar.

In a small mixing bowl combine the last seven (7) ingredients. Blend well. Evenly distribute into the 4 small plastic bags. Remove air from each spice bag, and seal well. Roll up and place on top of the each jar. Fill in extra room with additional Chex mix, peanuts, pretzels or corn nuts, if desired. Place cover on tightly.

If desired, fold the parchment paper in ½ lengthwise and roll into a tube. Tie each with a bit of twine.

With additional twine add the preparation directions that are written on shipping tags. (See preparation directions below).

Preparation Directions: (Include these with the gift)

Gluten-Free Snack Mix

Ingredients Needed:

Contents of this Snack Jar

1 ½ tablespoon of butter, margarine or substitute

In a small microwave bowl, place 1 ½ tablespoons of butter (or margarine or butter substitute) and microwave for 15-30 seconds, or until melted. Add the spice packet to the melted butter and mix well.

In a large microwave safe bowl place about ½ of the snack mix and add in about ½ of the melted butter-spice blend. Toss gently until the snack mix is well coated. Add in the rest of the snack mix and butter-spice blend, and repeat. Microwave for about 3 minutes, mixing 1/2 way through cooking time.

Place the Snack Mix on the parchment paper (or cookie sheet or tin foil) and let cool. Store in Ziplock bag or airtight container.


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