Goldfish crackers have become a childhood staple. A bright and happy orange, their fish shape is as cute as can be. Like most toddler favorites, they’re bite-sized and can be carried around in your hands, passed out during snack time in a paper cup, or (just ask the person who does the laundry) toted around in the pockets of your overalls.
As far as snack food goes, they’re certainly not the worst nutritionally. But for such small crackers, they do contain a fairly long list of ingredients…and the rainbow colored crackers contain some unpleasant food dyes that I’d rather avoid. If your child can’t have wheat or gluten, they’ll have to pass on the goldfish crackers altogether…unless you make some all natural gluten free goldfish crackers of your own!
In this article, I’m going to show you how to do exactly that. With this recipe, you can make some baked, all-natural gluten-free goldfish crackers that taste great! Then, as a bonus, I’ll share with you some benefits of eating gluten free. Let’s get started.
Gluten-Free Goldfish Crackers – Step-by-Step
What I love about these crackers (which I found at the Gracious Pantry website) is how simple they are. They’re mostly organic cheddar cheese, which gives them a wonderful boost of protein and calcium. Less than a cup of your favorite gluten-free flour mix, a few tablespoons of organic butter and a dash of onion powder and salt are all you need! Your little one can easily help out in the kitchen as you make these.
And of course, the number one priority, these things taste great! No filler, just great ingredients for a delicious, cheesy cracker.
First, just toss all the ingredients in a food processor, and pulse until it forms crumbs. When you see the dough, you’ll think that you’ve done something wrong…it’s very dry and looks like it needs more liquid. However, when you start to knead it the heat from your hands will help mold it into a more pliable dough.
Now comes the fun part. Roll the dough out on a piece of parchment paper, and cut the crackers out with a cookie cutter. Or, use an ice cube mold like this to form the fish and then pop them out (I used this method, and cut each fish horizontally to make two crackers in the right thickness). Arrange your nutritious and cheesy sea life on a parchment lined baking sheet and pop them in the oven for about 15 minutes.
At first, I was disappointed that the fish shapes spread a little so that my end result looked a bit more like puffer fish than goldfish. Then I tasted one. Yummy! These crackers are easy to make,and so delicious that you’ll want to eat the whole batch. So cheesy, and so full of flavor, the perfect snack!
These snack crackers will easily become a favorite with your kids (and you), and you could have a lot of fun playing with different shapes and sizes. Pop them in a lunchbox, or send a bag to nursery school with your gluten free little one…next time Dixie cups full of little orange fish are passed out before story time, your child won’t be left out. And maybe, if you’re very lucky, she’ll share a few with you!
Potential Benefits of Eating Gluten Free
So you like the idea of gluten-free but need a bit more convincing. Or perhaps it isn’t a choice but a dietary restriction. Regardless, you will be happy to learn that there are several advantages to this lifestyle. In this section, I will outline some of the potential benefits that are associated with a gluten-free lifestyle.
Of course, you don’t have to go fully gluten-free to enjoy some of thebenefits of gluten-free foods. The following list of benefits is far from exhaustive, but it might make you feel a lot better about making delicious, gluten-free snacks like the ones above!
Eliminates Many Processed Foods from Diet: Let’s face it, a lot of the unhealthy foods we eat have gluten, and a lot of them are also highly processed and unnatural. Things such as store-bought bread, cakes and desserts, and fast food are often quite high in gluten. By eliminating these types of things from your diet, you can start to shift your attention to eating more natural, non-processed foods with simple ingredients. Things such as fruits, vegetables, and organic meats can fill your diet instead of processed gluten products.
Weight Loss: While a gluten-free diet on its own won’t necessarily cause you to lose weight, a shift in diet and nutrition certainly can. If you focus more on non-processed, real foods, you will nourish your body with more sustainable ingredients, and you can lose weight in a safer manner. You don’t need to starve yourself to lose weight, and if you shift your attention away from some of the unhealthy ingredients found in many processed gluten products, you will find that you can put your full attention on eating well and fueling your body in a way that keeps you full.
Increased Focus on Nutrition: Many people find that one of the main benefits of seeking out gluten-free products is that it gives them a new perspective and understanding of nutrition in general. Once you start to focus on foods with real benefits to your body, you will see that you become much more aware of what you put in your body. Because of this, you will seek out more and more information on nutrition, and you will learn what kinds of foods are best for you. Nutrition is not a simple area of study, but once you start to pay attention and absorb information, you’ll find that good choices will tend to follow.
The Bottom Line:Of course, it is your choice how closely you want to follow a gluten-free diet, and you certainly don’t have to go entirely gluten-free (unless it is a dietary restriction). What is most important is that you find a diet that works for you. So do your research, and even consult a dietician if you want a more extensive look at how a gluten-free lifestyle can benefit you.
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I hope you enjoy this recipe for tasty gluten-free goldfish crackers! I’ve tried them, and I can attest that they are delicious. So if you’re looking for the perfect snack, and one that fits with your young one’s dietary restrictions as well, then look no further. These crackers are cheesy, real, and delicious!