Brunch menu, recipes, and allergy-safe egg hunt ideas for a food allergy-friendly Easter celebration!
Easter can be a difficult holiday to navigate for families with food allergy concerns. The egg hunt in and of itself revolves around an allergen! Not to mention all the chocolate (i.e. dairy) and peanut butter-infused treats everywhere...that are often a melted mess since so many egg hunts and celebrations are held outdoors in the sun. I remember attending our first Easter egg hunt and being on constant edge realizing there were essentially land mines everywhere (we were fairly new to food allergies then). It's arguably up there with Halloween as far as allergens being everywhere!
Over the years, we've figured out a few ways to navigate through Easter and still be able to have our kids participate in some of the fun. Here are a few tips and tricks we employ.
Allergen-Free egg hunts
Thankfully, plastic eggs are ubiquitous and available at almost any party shop, Target, or Oriental Trading. As Easter is this weekend, you can easily pick up packs of 48 at places like Party City for only $4. Those same shops also have a wide variety of party favors designed for regular kids' birthdays, but are great alternatives for filling eggs without having to use candy. Some of my favorites have been stickers, temporary tattoos, and the tiny little click cameras (you can buy individual ones in store, which are fun for the kids to get some variety). They fit perfectly in the eggs!
If candy is a must, thankfully, some brands now offer allergy-safe Easter themed candies. Our favorites have been No Whey Foods which are made in a dedicated facility at the time of this posting. Enjoy Life also launched Easter minis this year. Wholesome Sweets (a brand we trust, though it's still helpful to call for individual products) also have bunny-shaped lollipops, which will surely delight the kids!
Festive themed desserts that use safe ingredients
Food allergies doesn't mean missing out on being festive! Though our options may be a little more limited, there are ways to still make it fun!
For these, I used: Cherrybrook Kitchen's chocolate cake mix, Wholesome Sweets powdered sugar to make the frosting (Wholesome also has pre-made frosting at Whole Foods, though my local store didn't have it this time around), and No Whey Chocolate's Choco No-No Eggs.
These were super easy to whip up, and took very little time. If you are not allergic to coconut, it's even more fun to add some shredded coconut on the base prior to adding on the candy eggs.
Allergen-Free Brunch Menu
Easter brunches are one of my favorite traditions! While I miss going out to the fancy brunches, we've begun hosting some close family and friends in recent years. We are blessed to have supportive family who are sensitive to our needs, so potlucks do work for us, or they help prepare the food with us in our home so that we can help monitor the safety.
Here are some allergy-friendly menu ideas and some recipes that we will be pulling from for our brunch this year.
Main dish options:
Side dish options:
Scalloped potatoes (it's hard to find a recipe that's fully allergen-free!)
Roasted brussels sprouts
Breakfast sausage (we have used Applegate in the past and haven't had issues, though it is always good to call)
Sweet breakfast options:
"Yogurt bar" using So Delicious Vanilla Coconut Yogurt and freshly cut berries as options for different toppings
Festive Easter cupcakes (above)
Carrot cake (oat flour works for us - I'll also be posting our own carrot cake recipe soon!)
I will be adding to these along the way, but hope it offers some ideas and gets you off to a great start!
Disclaimer: It is recommended to always call companies before using their packaged products for baking and cooking, as they will sometimes change manufacturing procedures, and every individual has different levels of cross-contamination risk they are willing to take on. The above products are ones that we have used without issue, but may not work for everyone and you should always check to ensure it meets your family's standards and needs.