Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Chocolate Heaven Dipped Chex Mix

So on a few random nights I came home from work wanting a chocolaty snack, and immediately thought of those recipes on the back of the Chex cereal boxes, but of course and each and every time I went to make one, I was missing a few of the ingredients and I didn't want to involve the oven (that always seemed like a chore I didn't wanna partake in-baking dessert-on a week night-ugh).  So I decided to make my own Chex Party Mix versions solely using the microwave and let me tell you they were divine.  All I did was use which ever Chex cereal I had during that time and added my own super delicious ingredients and popped it into the microwave.  Super fab, super quick...craving tackled.

Did I mention these treats go great with a nice iced cup of non-fat milk!  Add a straw to that milk and feel like a kid again.

**this one is Chocolaty Chex and Popcorn Party Mix

Chocolaty Chex and Popcorn Butterscotch Party Mix
Copyright©2012 Recipes By Julie Rosenthal.  All Rights Reserved.

Honey-Nut Chex or Corn Chex Cereal (how many cups? as much as you can fit into a microwave individual bowl)
Skinny Popcorn (how much? Same as above-as much as you can fit, as hungry as you are)
dark chocolate or semi sweet chocolate chips-gluten-free -under a cup-1/3 usually works
Hershey's gf butterscotch chips-1/4 cup or 1/8 cup
Agave syrup (a few tbsp-your call) (drizzle it)

1. Put your Chex cereal and popcorn in a microwavable bowl.  Set aside.
2.  Melt 1/2 cup of chocolate chips in the microwave in a custard cup, for about 1-1 1/2 minutes or until melted.
3. Melt 1/4 cup of butterscotch chips in the microwave in a separate custard cup, for around the same time.
4. Drizzle the chocolate mixture and the butterscotch mixture on top of the popcorn and Chex cereal, stir with a fork.
5.  Drizzle a small portion of agave syrup over the chocolaty/butterscotch/Chex/popcorn mixture.  Stir again.
6.  Enjoy using a fork or spoon-no hands for this one-unless you don't mind chocolate hands.

Chocolaty Chex and Popcorn Party Mix
Copyright©2012 Recipes By Julie Rosenthal.  All Rights Reserved.

My second version made on an entirely different night was the same as above minus the butterscotch chips.  Same instructions too.

Salted Chocolaty Chex and Pretzel Party Mix-a.k.a The Perfect Super Fab PMS Dessert
Copyright©2012 Recipes By Julie Rosenthal.  All Rights Reserved.

My third attempt (now keep in mind each recipe made, was not created because I wasn't satisfied with the first, it was because it's all I had in my house ingredient wise at the given time).

My third attempt was a bit different.  I added GF pretzels and 1/2 of a scraped out vanilla bean.  And subtracted the popcorn, agave syrup and butterscotch chips.  And this time, I didn't fully melt the chips. I actually put the pretzels and the chocolate chips in the microwave together for 1 minute.  Then it was like a chunky chocolaty mess of pure goodness.  I also added additional amounts of pretzel salt from the GF pretzel bag.  Beyond yum, I'm not gonna lie.

Honey-Nut Chex or Corn Chex Cereal (how many cups? as much as you can fit into a microwave individual bowl)
GF pretzel Sticks (try Glutino or Snyder's) (how much? same as above-you decide)
dark chocolate or semi sweet chocolate chips-gluten-free -under a cup-1/3-1/2 usually works
1/2 vanilla bean scraped out (you can find these in the baking section of your local supermarket-they are pretty pricey about $8 for a jar of 2-you can also use vanilla extract, about 1 tsp)
Pretzel salt (from the bottom of the bag) (the gluten-free bag)!.

1. Put your Chex cereal in a microwavable bowl.  Set aside.
2.  Melt 1/3-1/2 cup of chocolate chips, the scraped out vanilla bean  (cut vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape with a non-sharp knife the gooey vanilla from the bean) with the pretzels in the microwave, for about 1 minute.  Do not wait until it's melted, it's supposed to only be slightly melted and chunky.  The pretzels will be warmed with the chocolate, and will not be as crunchy.  
4. Get extra pretzel salt from the bottom of your pretzel bag and stir the salt into the chocolate mixture
5. Mix in the Chex cereal, mix again and enjoy!
6.  Enjoy using a fork or spoon-again no hands for this one-unless you don't mind chocolate hands.

Salted and Melted Chocolaty Chex and Pretzel Party Mix-a.k.a The Perfect Super Fab PMS Dessert
Copyright©2012 Recipes By Julie Rosenthal.  All Rights Reserved.

My fourth attempt is using this recipe, but actually melting the vanilla bean with the chocolate chips and the pretzel salt until melted before adding the Chex and pretzels, then drizzling this mixture over the pretzel and Chex cereal mix and eating with a fork.  Super divine!

Lazy Chocolate and Raisins Chex and Pretzel Party Mix
Copyright©2012 Recipes By Julie Rosenthal.  All Rights Reserved.
My fifth attempt as out of pure laziness.  All I did was put Chex cereal, popcorn and or pretzels in a bowl with a handful of gluten-free chocolate chips and raisins and ate it by the handful.

PMS Melted Chocolate Covered Pretzels
Copyright©2012 Recipes By Julie Rosenthal.  All Rights Reserved.
And my sixth attempt was during PMS where I also out of pure laziness just melted chocolate and raisins at the same time on the pretzels in the microwave for 1-1 1/2 minutes and then ate it with a fork, which actually has nothing to do with Chex...

I think my article is done now.

xoxo Julie

Easy 1-2-3-Chex GF Party Mix Recipes

Have you ever bought a product that had a recipe on the back of the package?  In the past I used to see these recipes and overlook them immediately-I was a recipe snob.  But after going gluten-free I changed my tune because there are so many great recipes out there!  Most recently I bought Chocolate Chex cereal (which by the way is super hard to find in NYC, I bought them at Pathmark in Long Island-Greenvale) and Cinnamon Chex cereal and on the back of my Chex cereal box had these rad and super easy, fun recipes that you can make in under 15minutes!  Rock on!  Totally kid friendly, party friendly, snack friendly and the perfect P.M.S. dessert.  I'm serious.  These recipes are not to be messed with.

If you notice these days each flavored Chex cereal box has 3 super fun recipes on the back!  Check them out!  There are so many different ones.

Chocolate Chex Caramel Crunch
prep time: 15min Start to Finish: 15min 16 Servings (1/2 cup each)

8 cups Chocolate Chex cereal
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
6 Tbsp. unsalted butter or margarine
3 Tbsp. light corn syrup
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 cup white vanilla GF baking chips

1.  Into a large microwavable bowl, measure cereal; set aside.  Line cookie sheet with waxed paper.
2.  In 2-cup microwavable measuring cup microwave brown sugar, butter and corn syrup uncovered on high 1-2 minutes, stirring after 1 minute, until melted and smooth.  Stir in baking soda until dissolved.  Pour over cereal, stirring until evenly coated.  Microwave on high 3 minutes, stirring every minute.  Spread on cookie sheet.  Cool 10 minutes.  Break into bite-size pieces.
3.  In a small microwavable bowl, microwave vanilla baking chips uncovered on high about 1 minute and 30 seconds or until chips can be stirred smooth (bowl will be very hot).  Drizzle over snack.  Refrigerate until set.  Store in tightly covered container.

Chocolate Chex Marshmallow Clusters (OK, this one may actually take a LOT longer then 15 minutes) 16 Servings-1/2 cup each

6 cups chocolate Chex cereal
2 cups tiny GF (try Glutino and Snyder's) pretzel sticks (calls for twists, but GF those are hard to find) or regular shaped pretzels (calls for tiny pretzel fish shaped crackers, but I have yet to see those gluten-free)
1 jar marshmallow creme (Since most marshmallow cremes are not gluten-free and can sometimes be hard to find one, I suggest you make your own.  I found this great recipe on  It's a Whoopie Pie recipe, but the filling is a marshmallow creme recipe, just scroll down a little once you click on the link).   
1/2 cup M&M's

1.  Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray large roasting pan with cooking spray.  In very large bowl, mix cereal and pretzels.  Set aside.
2.  In a medium microwavable bowl, microwave marshmallow creme uncovered on high about 1 minute, stirring after 30 seconds, until creme is melted and can be stirred smooth.  Stir; pour over cereal mixture, stirring until evenly coated.  Spread in pan.
3.  Bake 8-10 minutes, stirring after 5 minutes, until coating just begins to turn very light golden brown.  Remove from oven; stir in M&M's.  Spread on waxed paper until cooled, about 15 minutes.  Break into clusters.  Store loosely covered.

Mayan Chocolate Chex Mix
prep time: 15min Start to Finish: 15min 16 Servings (1/2 cup each)

3 cups Corn Chex cereal
3 cups Chocolate Chex cereal
2 cups Cinnamon Chex cereal
1 cups whole cashews (make sure the packaging of your nuts does not say processed with wheat, or have what ingredients-sometimes these packages contain hidden gluten)
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
6 tbsp. butter or margarine
2 tbsp. light corn syrup
2 tsp. ground ancho chile pepper
1/4 tsp. ground red pepper (cayenne)
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup GF dark chocolate chips

1.  In a large microwavable bowl mix cereals and cashews
2.  1 a 2-quart microwavable measuring cup, microwave brown sugar, butter, corn syrup, chili, red pepper uncovered on high about 1 1/2 minutes, stirring after 1 minute or until melted and smooth.  Stir in vanilla.  Pour over cereal mixture; stir until evenly coated.
3.  Microwave uncovered on high 5-6 minutes, stirring after each minute.  Spread on waxed paper or foil to cool.  Break into bite-size pieces; stir in chocolate chips.  Store in airtight container.
Tips: pecans can also be used in replace of cashews

Did you know? Dried ancho chile peppers are slightly fruity in flavor and the sweetest of the dried chiles.

For more recipes go to

Enjoy!! xoxo Julie

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Is The Product You Are Eating Contain Caramel Coloring?

Since I am on the topic of Caramel Coloring...

I should add that Coke (all versions of Coke), Pepsi (all versions of Pepsi) and root beer (all versions) all have caramel coloring, which means that every soda you drink you are consuming under 20ppm (parts per million-seems like so little, but builds up so fast) of gluten each time.

Bummer, big bummer and total bummer.

And right now, 20ppm and under is considered gluten-free, even though it has gluten.

So think about that the next time you want a soda pop.

In addition soda breaks down the digestion of vitamins and you end up not absorbing them correctly which is like the kiss of death for those of us with vitamin deficiencies!  Seriously, soda's not looking good right about now.

Enjoy! xoxo Julie

What's in The Gatorade You Are Drinking?

I don't know why I never blogged about this, but I have known it for some time.  And was just reminded of this the other day while I was at CVS and felt the need to spread the gluten-free word.  I also tweeted it.

Did you know that certain Gatorade flavors like the fruit punch (red) flavor has caramel coloring in it?  Yup! It totally does.

In the U.S. a processed product considered gluten-free has 20 or below 20ppm (parts per million).  Therefore products can seem gluten-free and even say gluten-free, even if they are not 100% gluten-free because our standards allow that and consider it Gluten-Free.  

And different processed foods contain different levels of gluten-some contain less then 10ppm or even 5 parts per million.  That's lower but cigar. The less you consume the better and the article I just found on points that the more under 20ppm/10/5ppm products you consume, the more gluten in your system.  Meaning, it builds up!  And that means that the average person on a gluten-free diet eating many processed under 20ppm products might even consume small amounts of gluten on a daily basis!  That's cray cray! I never thought about it that way before.  Eek!  As they say it only takes an 1/8 of a teaspoon...that 1/8th will come mighty quickly if you over consume these processed products.  Double eek!!

Therefore if you are as sensitive as I am, caramel coloring (not to be confused with caramel candy) an ingredient that has hidden gluten, that can be found in red Gatorade will not be gluten-free to your standards.

As we all know there are many, MANY flavors of Gatorade.  I do not have a complete list of the ones that have caramel coloring and the ones that don't.  So in the meantime, while I compile this list, check the ingredients of Gatorade bottles before purchase to make sure there is no caramel coloring.  You can find this information on the back of every Gatorade bottle under the Ingredients List.

Have you ever wondered the meaning of hidden gluten?  It can be as easy as an ingredient of which you do not recognize and therefore is actual gluten just with a different name.  So simple.
There are a lot of products out there like this.  

And there are some people out there that can tolerate under 20/10/5ppm as gluten-free-but if you are not one of them, you should know about Gatorade and caramel coloring.  And you should also just be in the know about this topic in general.  

I stick with Glacier Freeze-Gatorade Frost and Lemon-Lime.

Enjoy!! xoxo Julie

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Get Your Thanksgiving On with Tu Lu's Bakery!!

Hello fellow readers!  It's been so long since blogging my last post I forgot my own password!  But fear not I am back.  And back with some tantalizing news about Tu Lu's Bakery on East 11th Street in NYC and their second/third locations which I have not been to in Dallas (on Sherry Lane and the other in the West Village, Dallas)  has some new goodies just in time for Thanksgiving!!  I was there last Saturday and bought two already made pie crusts!  2 for $14.  Great deal.  They are the freshest if used within the month.  I can't wait to bake pie!  Please click on the NYC link for GF Thanksgiving Menu with Tu Lu's Bakery and click on the Dallas link for the GF Thanksgiving Menu.  In addition you can get GF Quiche, GF Breads, GF Pies, Stuffing Mix, GF Cakes and GF Dinner rolls.  The pies, some breads and the stuffing mix is dairy-free too!  And the banana loaf is Vegan and Tully really knows how to make Vegan taste real good!.  Ahhhh.  There is a G-D.  GF G-D I mean.  

In addition you can also buy the dough (rolled) AND you can also buy small amounts of cookie dough!! And it's all ready for the oven all you have to do is roll it out.  It is sold individually, meaning it's not enough for 36 cookies, but for singular larger cookies!!  Yummy!  So if you are in the mood for 1 cookie and don't want to make an entire batch you just roll it out and pop one into the oven.  Darn I so wish I bought that!  It's such a clever idea.  And who wouldn't want 1 singular cookie at any time of your convenience from Tu Lu's Bakery?

In addition Tu Lu's is now taking Thanksgiving pie orders, so if you just don't have the time to make one on your own, you can have the amazing baking staff at Tu Lu's make one or two or three or four!  for you!.

Ah, I love Tu Lu's Bakery!  Call to place your order!!

Enjoy!! xoxo Julie