Happy Herbivore Light and Lean Giveaway… Finally!

As you may remember, way back in October I participated in a pre-release blog tour for Lindsay Nixon’s newest cookbook, Happy Herbivore Light and Lean (check the post out for an interview with Lindsay and a Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe!). A few weeks later I received my copy and promised a giveaway. Giveaways are marvelous, am I right? 😉


Well, today’s the day I am going to deliver! I wanted to wait until the holidays had settled down and we were all back to regular blogging activities before hosting this giveaway. I know several bloggers took breaks and just returned recently to posting. Also, I personally didn’t do as much blog reading for my three weeks of winter break and I’m sure many of you were the same. So in light of all of this I didn’t want anyone to come back and find they missed out on this opportunity!

Disclaimer: Although I received a free copy of Happy Herbivore Light and Lean to review, I did not receive any monetary compensation and all thoughts and opinions are entirely (100%) my own.



As I’ve mentioned before, I am kind of atypical in the sense that I like to read cookbooks like I would any other fiction novel. And the night I received Happy Herbivore I got into bed and read through the entire thing just like I do when I get the newest release from my other favorite authors.

Here are my brief thoughts on the overall presentation:

The first thing I noticed as I flipped through the pages was the COLOR. There was not a single page that lacked color. With today’s technology I don’t think there is any excuse for black and white cookbooks (save for those spiral bound fundraising books made by the occasional old lady’s church group). Unlike most cookbooks that I’ve found where the only color is in the pictures of the food, each page had a complimentary color scheme and was just as fun to look at as the pictures themselves.



On each page there are extremely helpful sections to denote everything you would ever want to know about the recipe. You have allergen information at the top, nutrition information in the corners, and chef notes listed at the bottom. The majority of the page of course is taken up by the recipe with the ingredients and serving amounts on the side, and the directions written in paragraph format under the recipe description. As someone who usually writes recipes using numbers, I was at first a little surprised by how the directions were written out. After reading through the first few though, I began to like the flow and it made cooking seem more like the art it should be and less like some robotic GPS making you complete the first step before carrying onto the next (it’s something that I’m considering changing with my own recipes, but we’ll see!).

Also important to point out is that the pictures are not included on the recipe page but on the opposite facing page of the cookbook, making the directions and instructions less cluttered and giving room for a full page, full color shot of whatever you’re making.



That was the middle essence of the cookbook. The beginning consists of an introduction with a personal note from Lindsay, an index for all of the recipes listed by calorie count, tips on getting started, a shopping list, an explanation of caloric density, tips on lightening up your day, her personal health journey (loved this!) and an explanation of how to use the icons featured in the book.


At the end there is the appendix which has a glossary of ingredient descriptions, substitution ideas, kitchen prep “lingo,” additional resources, metric conversions, and an index where you can find a recipe both by its name and by ingredient.

Personal Note

When I spoke of this cookbook last, a few people commented to me that they didn’t understand why I was promoting something vegan. “Don’t you eat meat?” Yes, yes I do. I’m not going to pretend that I don’t eat meat and I’m not going to apologize for it either. My motivation behind reviewing this book was not to promote a vegan diet (or plant-based as many call it). I came at this from the position of someone who has food allergies, and recipes that are vegan are naturally perfect for those who are allergic to animal products like eggs, dairy, meat, fish, etc. Also, since Lindsay promotes mostly lower fat recipes, about 99% of the food is also peanut-free, nut-free and coconut-free too!

Food Allergies

So, with that point made, here are a few recipes that I think would be great for those with food allergies or various other dietary needs when it comes to food:

  • Balsamic-Dijon Vinaigrette (pg. 137)
  • Homemade Ketchup (pg. 8)
  • Chocolate Surprise Frosting (pg. 12)
  • Brody’s Gluten-Free Flour Blend (pg. 267)
  • Everyday Mushroom Gravy (pg. 189)
  • Deviled “Eggs” (pg. 203)
  • Pumpkin Spice Latte (pg. 256)
  • Oatmeal Pancakes (pg. 97)
  • Sweet Potato Ice Cream (pg. 236)
  • Microwave Peach Cobbler (pg. 137)
  • Breakfast Tacos (pg. 145)
  • Smoky Apple Baked Beans (pg. 172)
  • Asian Orange Kale Salad (pg. 179)
  • Loaded Mexican Potato (pg. 195)
  • Carrot Soup (pg. 236)
  • Skinny Pad Thai (pg. 161)
  • Nacho Bowl (pg. 93)
  • Leftovers Pot Pie (pg. 121)
  • Caribbean Chili (pg. 116)

Other Reviews

If you want to check out all of the other bloggers who participated in the tours (along with their reviews and some sneak peak recipes!) check out this post and this post.

A few highlights were Kaila from Healthy Helper Blog who shared Meatloaf Bites:


Laura from Plant-Based Junkies with a Thai Crunch Salad:


And the Herbivore herself with a recipe for Pumpkin Pancakes:




Finally, as indicated in the title, Happy Herbivore Light and Lean also features an exercise section with a list of exercise suggestions that are 30, 20, 15 or 10 minutes in length and all burn 100 calories. Next she gives tips on how to fit exercise into your day and continues on with pages of workouts along with her personal trainer friend Jon Warren. My favorite part of this section was “Lindsay’s Body Blast” at the end where there is a page long description of a workout that Lindsay frequently does.

Here is a little snippet from the book explaining what the “Body Blast” is:

“This all-in-one exercise is what I do when my time (and space) is limited. It’s a little on the advanced side, so you may need to work up to it. It’s a killer circuit and I have a lot of fun challenging myself, drill-instructor style, to see how fast I can move through the exercise (while still keeping proper form!) and how many rounds I can go through before I’m wasted. (Usually two, but I’m a work in progress!)”



I have yet to try this out myself, but from just reading it over I think “killer” is the perfect description. One day when I build up the guts to do it I’ll report back and tell you how far I got!


Really, there’s nothing much more to say other than I am confident that you will love this book if you love cooking and baking as much as I do. This is my second book of Lindsay’s and I have enjoyed it just as much as the first. I know the soup recipes will come in hand this winter and the fresh delicious salad ideas will be welcome during spring. The true test of a good cookbook is its versatility across not only seasons, but also palettes (in this case, I am referring to food allergies) and this book truly has something for everyone.



If you made it through all of that, bravo! And if you just skipped to the bottom to win the giveaway, I can’t really blame you for that either. This giveaway goes live as soon as I publish this post. It will end one week from tonight and I will announce the winner next Monday morning after using Random Number Generator to pick who wins the cookbook.

Unfortunately this giveaway is limited to just U.S. and Canadian citizens (I can already hear the groans… I’m sorry!). However, if you would still like to participate and someone outside of the United States or Canada wins, I will give a consolation prize of allowing you to write a guest post on my blog about whatever your heart desires (within reason of course). Sound fair?

After I announce the winner, you will have three days to contact me via e-mail with a viable address or I will be forced to pick someone else.

Like with all of my past giveaways, I am going to include a number of ways that you can enter. I do this so that if you aren’t able to complete one of them for whatever reason then you still have several opportunities to win. You don’t have to do them all, but make sure to leave a separate comment for each below::

  1. Tell me what your #1 deal breaker is for a cookbook (Mine is obviously good pictures and color!).
  2. Follow me on Bloglovin or by e-mail (there is an entry box in the right side bar below my social media icons).
  3. Follow me on Instagram.
  4. Follow me on Pinterest.
  5. Follow Happy Herbivore on any of her social media sites: Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook.

And if by some chance you don’t win, make sure to check the cookbook out on Amazon where you can purchase it in e-book format for $9.99 or in paperback for $11.97. Really great prices for over a 300 page cookbook!

Theirs, Mine, and Ours

Before I even jump into today’s post, I want to express my sincerest thanks for all of your comments on the vlog that I posted Friday. I cannot even tell you how hesitant I was to share it, and then how much I dreaded my decision in the few hours after. Where you all called me “cute” I saw myself as “flighty.” Where you said that I seemed so “relaxed” and “real” I thought rather that I was “rambling” (as I appropriately indicated in my post title for the day). I still think that most of you were just being nice, but all the same I appreciate you taking the time to watch it. I have no idea when I will make another or IF I can even gather up the courage to make another, but I’m glad I bit the bullet and did a second one (my first was all the way back in October 2012, more than a year ago!).

Also, another note before sharing some delicious food pictures with you all, I’m going to be blunt and admit that I have no idea how much time I will be able to spend blogging this semester. Right now in fact I should be reading for one of my classes but that will come in due time and staying up just a little bit later is definitely worth it.

At the start of 2014 I had all of these big plans for Eating 4 Balance including finally getting a self-hosted site, upgrading to a new theme, working on more professional pictures/recipes. Yada yada yada. Oh, and being more faithful with comments too. I know that January is not even half way over yet, but can I just say MAJOR FAIL? Sorry everyone. I’m going to do my best. It’s not really an option for me to quit entirely or take a break because blogging IS MY BREAK. Really, reading blogs and blogging is my relief from college life and classes. Take that away and you have a Madison ten times more strung out and scattered than you saw in my video (I think beginning to refer to myself in third person may be a sign that the craziness has already begun? Is there no hope of turning back?!!! 😉 ).

With those hundreds of words put out there, this WIAW will be probably less wordy and more picture-heavy than normal.


I called this post “Yours, Mine and Ours” to represent the variety of food that I made over the holidays and am about to unload on you. There are some pictures of food that I made for my parents and/or brother (theirs), some food that I made for myself (mine*), and the food that I made for both (ours).

*Although as noted on Friday, I have basically backed off of trying to add anything new. Simple is the name of the game once more as I try to go back to how I felt before the holidays. Meat and veggies here I come… Already feeling much better though thankfully!



Gluten-free buckwheat pancakes inspired by Gluten-Free Goddess


Homemade macaroni and cheese


Whole wheat pasta, organic cheese and milk


Pumpkin oatmeal with granola and almond butter


Oatmeal with pears, almond butter and maple cinnamon pecans


Quiche inspired by Meghan


Made with an almond flour crust, eggs, milk, cheese, seasonings, onions, squash and broccoli


Puppy chow for my brother’s New Year’s Eve party



Gluten-free and vegan biscuits


Oh so moist, flavorful and crumbly!


Homemade ice cream with goat’s milk and stevia


Gluten-free, vegan, and sugar-free pancakes


Sweet gluten-free and vegan pancakes made with potatoes


Potato pancakes topped with New York maple syrup


Whole Foods salad bar: red quinoa, grilled chicken and cucumber slices


Chocolate pudding: cocoa powder, pumpkin puree, tapioca starch, water, stevia and frozen blueberries… yum!


Goat’s milk yogurt with stevia and frozen blueberries



Alright, so we didn’t actually share THAT much food-wise over vacation


Paleo pumpkin chocolate chip cake with a chocolate frosting (I just ate some of the frosting. It was amazing and tasted like a rich chocolate pudding.)

I do have plans to share some of these recipes eventually, hopefully sooner rather than later! 🙂


Questions for you:

  • Can you guess what inspired the title of this post?
  • Do you make food that is just for someone else, yourself, or even both?
  • What is your favorite food to make? Obviously mine is pancakes!

Microwave Cinnamon Rolls — 12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Recipes Day One

Day 1 of 12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Recipes

Hello and welcome to Day One of the 12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Recipes. I am your host, Madison at Eating 4 Balance, and boy have we got a show for you today!

The theme for Day One is breakfast pastries, a very fitting way to begin this round-up as breakfast will be the very first thing you eat come Christmas day.

As part of this post I have collected dozens of breakfast pastry recipes which I will share shortly. Before we do that though, I have created a “new” special recipe to share as well which I am confident you are going to love.

Whether you have food allergies, a special diet, or are just trying to eat healthier, it can be frustrating to come across an amazing looking recipe and then see the serving size. Especially if you are the only one in your family eating a certain way, a recipe with multiple servings is just too much. First, do we really want to still be eating the leftovers come the next week? Of course not! And if it’s a dessert recipe, having multiple servings can be very tempting and if you’re anything like me you can’t just stop at one or two.

So this recipe, no matter which category you fall into, is perfect. It only makes two, and is so quick to whip up that if you need a tasty allergy-free treat on Christmas morning but don’t want the prep time or hassle, you can make these microwave cinnamon rolls.

Microwave Cinnamon Rolls (Paleo and Vegan)

Microwave Cinnamon Rolls

Grain/Gluten/Wheat-Free, Vegan, Nut-Free, Paleo/GAPS-Friendly

Makes two large servings

Dough Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseed + 1/4 cup water
  • 1 small ripe banana
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour
  • dash of salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

Filling Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1-2 tsp cinnamon


  1. Combine the flaxseed and water in a bowl until thickened. Mash in the ripe banana and then add in the remaining ingredients. Mix well until you have a thick dough.
  2. Using your hands, press out the dough onto a piece of parchment paper by hand to the size of a long, but thin rectangle.
  3. Mix together the coconut oil and honey for the filling and spread evenly over the dough. Sprinkle on the cinnamon.
  4. Next roll up the dough so that you are left with a log about 4 or 5 inches wide. Slice into two halves.
  5. Place one of the halves on a plate lined with parchment paper and pop it into the microwave. Cook for about 3 minutes on high (you will have to experiment with this as all microwaves cook differently). When done it should spring back to the touch but still be somewhat soft.
  6. Repeat with the other half. Enjoy your quick and allergy-free cinnamon rolls!

Notes: If you prefer to not cook things in the microwave, you can also bake these for about 15-20 at 350 degrees. I adapted this recipe from my oven one which you can look at here.

Microwave Cinnamon Rolls (Paleo and Vegan)

Usually I stay away from anything that isn’t meat or a vegetable because my stomach starts acting up, but I made an exception for these cinnamon rolls and hate half. Delicious.

If those don’t appeal to you though, don’t worry because I have many other recipes that you will be interested. Actually, it’s almost impossible that you won’t find a recipe that you can make among the ones I am about to share.

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries

We have basically ever breakfast pastry under the Sun here. Scones, donuts, bagels, biscotti, cinnamon rolls, and much more. I have separated all of the recipes into categories with the links underneath the respective pictures. To make it easier for you, I have also included the food allergy profile next to each link so you can see if it will fit with your diet.

Those recipes that have an asterisk (*) by tree nut or soy free is to denote that the recipe calls for an ingredient that can easily be switched for those who cannot have it. For example, if a recipe calls for almond milk and that is the only tree nut in the recipe, I will put an asterisk by tree nut because you can easily use a different milk substitute with similar results.

While I tried very hard to make sure that I included the correct allergens and that the links are all functioning, please let me know if I have missed something. Enjoy!


12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Scones)

Cranberry Orange and Chocolate Scones (wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut*, and sesame free)

Cherry Oat Scones (gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Pear and Almond Scones (wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Scones)

Paleo Pumpkin Maple Scones (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

Cranberry Apple Scones – (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

Dark Chocolate Cherry Scones – (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy*, soy, peanut, and sesame free)


12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Donuts)

Apple Donuts (dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Apple Cider Donuts (gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Cinnamon Roll Donuts (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Donuts)

Chocolate Peppermint Cake Donuts (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

Gingerbread Donuts with Cinnamon Buttercream Frosting (gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Healthier Chocolate Glazed Donuts (soy, peanut, tree nut*, and sesame free)

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Donuts)

Molasses Donuts (gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, tree nut*, and sesame free)

Maple Glazed Donuts (dairy, egg, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Caramel-Glazed Donuts (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Donuts)

Carrot Cake Donuts (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Banana Coconut Pecan Protein Baked Donuts (gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

Almond Joy Mini Donuts (gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)


12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Bagels)

Grain-Free Bagels (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut,  and sesame free)

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin Bagels (dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Onion Poppy Seed and Cinnamon Raisin Bagels (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Breakfast “Rolls”

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Breakfast "Rolls")

Bananas Baked in Phyllo with Date-Sweetened Chocolate Sauce (dairy, egg, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

Skinny Mini Jelly Roll Cake for One (gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Paleo Crepes with Nutella (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, and sesame free)


12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Biscotti)

Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti (grain, gluten, wheat, egg, soy, peanut,  and sesame free)

Vegan Eggnog Crunch Biscotti (dairy, egg, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

Cherry Chocolate Biscotti (gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Baked Fruit

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Baked Fruit)

Baked Apples Stuffed with Cinnamon Date Pecan Oatmeal (gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

Fresh Gingered Anjou Pear Cobbler (gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

Apple Fritters (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Baked Fruit)

Honey Cinnamon Stewed Apples (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Healthy Apple Pie Breakfast (gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut*, and sesame free)

Poached Pears (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Cinnamon Rolls

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Cinnamon Rolls)

Raw Cinnamon Rolls with Coconut Icing and Caramel Raisin Filling (gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Hot Cocoa Toasty Marshmallow Swirl Cinna-Buns (dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Walnut Raisin Cinnamon Rolls (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Cinnamon Rolls)

Coconut Flour Cinnamon Rolls (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Nut Butter and Carob Chunk Cinnamon Rolls (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Apple Chunk Cinnamon Rolls (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut*, tree nut*, and sesame free)

Miscellaneous Pastries

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Miscellaneous)

Cream Puff Pastry (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Cinna-Sugar Flutes (dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Gingerbread Breakfast Pizzert (dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut*, and sesame free)

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Day One: Breakfast Pastries (Miscellaneous)

Almond Croissants (dairy, egg, soy, peanut, and sesame free)

Chocolate Eclairs (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

Paleo Churros (grain, gluten, wheat, dairy, soy, peanut, tree nut, and sesame free)

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Recipes

Thanks for looking through all of these breakfast pastry recipes! If you have a favorite not listed here, feel free to share it in the links so everyone can enjoy it as well.

To see the rest of the 12 Days of Christmas Allergy-Free recipes, check back on this page (which you can also access on my menu above) where I will be including the hyperlinks as the other bloggers post. Also, if you are interested in participating in this round-up, there are a few days left and we would love to have you.


Questions for you:

What are you going to eat Christmas morning?

What is your favorite breakfast pastry?

Do you prefer smaller serving sizes for recipes?

12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Recipes— Everything you Need to Know, and How to Sign Up

I have just been amazed at the response I’ve received on my idea that I shared on Friday. You all are truly wonderful and I’m so lucky to have you as both fellow bloggers, and friends. I asked for help and you certainly delivered.

I have no doubt in my mind now that we will be able to do this 12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Recipes with great success. In this post today I am going to give you all of the fine details and hopefully better explain what the round-up is all about, and more importantly- how you can participate.

Don’t be worried by the enormous amount of text that is about to come. I have already written up a draft of my contribution post, and it took me less than an hour (which if you know me, is quite quick 😉 ). Most of the information below is just me trying to be a thorough as I can so there is no confusion. Still, if there are any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to ask!

To get started, here is the “button” that I have created for the round-up event:


Feel free to scale down to size (I just wanted provide the largest amount of pixels possible to prevent blurry images).

Now onto all of the details…


What are the who/what/where/when/whys of the 12 Days of Allergy-Free Christmas Recipes?

  • Who: Any blogger that wants to join in, can. If we surpass the 12 bloggers, you can still participate by submitting a recipe link directly to the blogger in charge of a particular theme. In addition you could also still use the round-up button for any Christmas or holiday posts that involve allergy-friendly recipes that you post throughout the season.
  • What: We are gathering up Christmas allergy-free recipes into one large collection. The recipes don’t need to be “free” of everything, just at least one common allergen like wheat, dairy, gluten, peanuts, eggs, etc. One post doesn’t need to be all gluten-free or all peanut-free. Mix it up and provide options for everyone!
  • When: The round-up will be starting this Friday, December 13 as “Day One” and will end the day before Christmas on Tuesday, December 24 as “Day Twelve.”
  • Where: You will post your themed post as you would a regular post on your blog, and I will have a page on my blog dedicated especially for this event, with a link for each day.
  • Why: This round-up is so that at the conclusion of the 12 Days we will have a full list of Christmas recipes that can help those with any dietary needs or restrictions. The holidays are supposed to be about sharing smiles, spending time with family, and getting to make amazing memories. Having to be concerned with finding safe food to eat is often stressful, time-consuming, and not very fun. This collection of recipes will be an invaluable resource to lessen that burden and help people enjoy the holidays!


How to participate in the 12 Days:

1. Leave a comment below with what days you are available to host, and what theme you would like to showcase (if you can give a couple of each that would be great for scheduling purposes). This is open to absolutely any blogger that would like to join up to 12 (but like I said previously, if we go over 12, you can still submit a recipe to the the other co-hosts for their specific themed round-up).

2. I will contact you as soon as possible to let you know what day and theme is yours. I will also update the lists below on this blog post as days and themes are taken so you not which are still available.

3. A few days before it is is your posting day, start to gather your recipes. Make a call out to your readers for links to their favorite allergy-free recipes, and gather some of those from your favorite bloggers. Also, work on the recipe that you are contributing and get all of those delicious photos taken!

4. Write and publish the round-up on your assigned day. No need to send me the link. I will grab it when reading your blog along with everyone else, and I will come back here to add a hyperlink to the round-up home base.


When it comes to making your post, just a few things to remember:

  • Explain what this round-up is for and why you are participating. Maybe you are doing it because you have dietary restrictions and know how hard it can be to find good holiday recipes, or perhaps you are doing it just out of the generosity of your heart!
  • Include the provided round-up button and link back to the home page located on my blog. I will be listing and sharing a link for each host’s themed post so that they are easily accessible all in one place.
  • Share the collection of recipes that you found within your food theme. You can include a link, optional photo, and most conveniently, a quick breakdown of who the recipe would be good for. As an example- Easy Apple Cinnamon Pancakes from Eating 4 Balance (Grain-Free, Paleo).
  • Then include the recipe that you made specifically for the event! If you don’t have time to make a recipe, no worries. You can just repost an old one, making sure to give a breakdown of what food allergies/diet it would be good for.
  • And finally, make sure to remind your readers to check out the other bloggers who will be sharing their round-ups and recipes!


Here is the current list of available days (which I will update as bloggers confirm when they can host):

Click here for an icon that you can include for your specific day. Example of Day 1 below.



Here are the available themes (again, which I will update as they are taken):

***I would like to try and have the 12 days of food themes run in at least some sort of chronological order with breakfast starting first, then followed in some combination of drinks, appetizers, the main meals, side dishes, bread, dessert, leftovers, etc. Here are the 12 themes that I think would be best to include, but feel free to suggest/replace one with your own idea!

  • Breakfast- Pastries and dessert-like items. (Me from Eating 4 Balance)
  • Breakfast- Casseroles, Porridge, Eggs/Quiches, etc. (Jan from Sprouts N Squats)
  • Snacks- What you could snack on throughout the day while cooking up the big Christmas feast! 😀 (Sarah from Slices of Sarah Pie)
  • Drinks- Hot cocoa, juice, smoothies, flavored water, cider, fruit punch, coffee… (Rosie from Facing Your Storm)
  • Appetizers- Easy-to-pick-up foods to eat before the main meal. (Andrea from Pencils and Pancakes)
  • Main dishes- Self explanatory. (Kendra from Veggie Dancer)
  • Side dishes- This can be anything from vegetables to stuffing to a traditional family favorite. (Olivia from Liv Lives Life)
  • Bread- Sweet breads, savory breads, muffins, fruit cake, etc. (Juli from 1000 Lovely Things)
  • Cookies- One of the essentials for Santa on Christmas Eve! 😉 (GiGi from Gigi Eats Celebrities)
  • Pie/Cake/Cheesecake/Pudding- Almost every celebration has them. (Cat from Cat Food is Good for You)
  • Candy/Fudge- This can be simple homemade candy and/or seasonal twists on delicious fudge.
  • Nut butters and spreads- Come on, you nut butter lovers out there know that this is a holiday must! (Kathleen from Kat’s Health Corner
  • Leftovers- An inevitable part. Some creative, allergy-friendly suggestions for what to do with them would be so helpful!

**If you are listed as “tentative” above that means that we have discussed a theme but I haven’t 100% verified that you can do it. Let me know if you’re still able to or would like to change, and what day you want!**

Thanks in advance to everyone who participates!


Please comment below with what days you are available, and what themes you would like to host. List them in order of preference so that I can work our the schedule and find the best fit for everyone!

Are there any themes that you would rather see, or do you have any questions about the round-up details? Nothing is set in stone and if you have a good suggestion for improvement, I’m all ears! 🙂

As always, if you don’t want to leave a comment here, you can also e-mail me at alleyhays[at]gmail[dot]com (<<< I promise I will get a better one soon with my actual name! 😉 ).

And if for any reason you end up being not able to post, please e-mail me immediately. If you could find a blogger that would be willing to replace you in that event, I would thoroughly appreciate it, but if not, the sooner I know, the sooner I can find someone!