Since I’ve been working on developing a repertoire of low FODMAP and low histamine recipes for a while now, I felt it was time to share some of these successes. While processed foods are really convenient and would be a blessing to be able to use when you have to protect your precious energy stores so carefully, the reality is that highly processed convenience foods almost always come with ingredients and chemicals that are harmful to a spoonie’s sensitive disposition, especially when you have a sensitivity to some or many different types of carbohydrates and react to foods due to mast cell issues. This can include everything from toxic metals and pesticides to seemingly harmless ingredients like onion and garlic that actually cause many people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Gastroparesis (GP) and other Gastrointestinal disorders a great deal of discomfort. In the long run, if you’re eating a lot of conventional processed foods, you’re probably doing your health a lot more harm than good by conserving the spoons you need to cook. If you haven’t realized it yet, cooking and what you consume should be an integral part of your care plan. Food is medicine and it’s the first step in gaining control over your conditions.
The FODMAP Diet
If you don’t know what FODMAP’s are or how many people with IBS and GP have found relief by determining which ones are a problem and eliminating them from their diet, see my article about my own FODMAP journey, which includes some helpful resources on getting started. In a nutshell, it’s a system which organizes carbohydrates by type and how much they contain. The FODMAP diet will help you to test and screen out those that may be affecting you. While a healthy person may be able to eat any type of carbohydrate they want, many of us with GI disorders cannot. Even my husband, who has had no discernible GI disorder of any kind has recently developed lactose and fructan intolerances. With the increase in cases of IBS, it’s hard not to think that carbohydrate intolerance is on the rise.
The Histamine Diet
If you’re just getting started on the histamine diet, it can be quite daunting and figuring out what you can actually eat can be quite a bear. To help you get started, I’ve written a couple of articles on the subject:
- MCADs and the Low Histamine Diet – What the diet’s all about, including resources and reference guides
- Low Histamine Diet Recipes Section in the Works – This article discusses a little about learning to eat this way and some of the things I eat on a regular basis now that I’m on the Histamine Diet.
I’ll try to keep all my recipes here as I post them, but remember, I have brain fog, so I might forget from time to time, so you can also use the tags on the sidebar.
***For additional food safety and selection tips, scroll past the recipe section!***
Main Dish Meals:
*LF=Low FODMAP, LH=Low Histamine
- Pork Loin Dijon
- Whole Roasted Chicken
- Lemon Tarragon Chicken Salad
- Bell’s Pork Burgers
- Beef Pot Roast in Red Wine Sauce
- Chicken Noodle Soup
- Shredded Beef or Chicken Enchiladas
- Tarragon Chicken (Slow Cooker)
- Homemade Italian Sausage
- Cap’s Homemade Spaghetti Sauce
- Grandma’s Southwest Chili
- Salisbury Steak
- Provencal Beef Stew w/ Olives
- Herb Roasted Lamb Chops
- Twice Grilled BBQ Burritos
- Pan Seared Pork Chops w/ Ginger & Cayenne
- Chipotle Pork Tacos
- Pot Roast Poutine for Two
- Chicken Monterey
- Bowtie Pasta with Chicken Sausage
- Greek Chicken Pasta
- City Chicken
- Stromboli– LF
- Chicken and Noodles – LF, LH
- Making Low FODMAP Breakfasts Fast
- Gluten-Free Low FODMAP Pancakes
- Smoked Ham and Brie Omelet for Two
- Pot Roast Hash– LF, LH
Side Dishes and Appetizers
Condiments, Sauces & Spice Mixes
- Low FODMAP Chicken Stock
- Low FODMAP Red Tomato Salsa
- Low FODMAP Chili Powder
- Green Enchilada Sauce (Low FODMAP)
- Red Enchilada Sauce (Low FODMAP)
- Low FODMAP Beef Stock
- Low FODMAP Barbecue Sauce
- Low FODMAP Taco Seasoning Mix
Snacks & Desserts
If you have food intolerance, you should be checking every label. Even those that only list “spices” as an ingredient can spell big trouble for those of us intolerant of two of the most widely used fructans out there; garlic and onion. These vegetables, even in minute amounts of the dried powder form, can cause days of gastric pain. Even some simple “plain” potato chips have onion and garlic on them and it’s nearly impossible to find condiments, sauces, mixes or pre-packaged food without them. When you do, it feels like a real win, but when you can’t, there’s no need to go without; you just have to make your own. That’s why you’ll find many of my recipes include some of the simplest things, from broths and stocks, to sauces and condiments.
I will also be publishing many main dish meals, side dishes, snacks and desserts that have worked well for us. It gets really old eating the same bland thing day after day, so you learn to get pretty creative quite quickly. Since I’ve been experimenting in the kitchen since a very young age, I at first felt really stifled by my very limited diet, but I’ve come to realize that the only limits are really how motivated I am to seek out new ideas and inspirations.
The recipes I have developed and adapted fit my specific intolerance profile, so I feel like I should add a few caveats:
- Examine each recipe for ingredients that you may be intolerant of or allergic to; just because I can eat it doesn’t mean you can. Conversely, the same is true. If I haven’t included something because I’m intolerant and you think it will make it better, go for it! Why impose unnecessary restrictions on yourself?
- I do NOT have Celiac’s disease and wheat is one of the fructans I’m actually able to process, so I use organic, non-GMO wheat products, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use my recipes. Simply substitute a gluten-free alternative for the wheat containing ingredient. As I use ancient grains and did do the gluten-free thing for a time, I know they’re tasty and usually work great in these recipes.
- Stick to portion sizes. Just because something is low FODMAP doesn’t mean you can go crazy with it. An ounce of sharp cheddar may be safe, but eat 3 ounces and you may be in agony for a few days. Keep this in mind.
- I am not a registered dietician, a trained chef, or a medical professional. I do not provide calorie or nutrition information. If you’re concerned with it, you can plug recipes into any number of calorie calculators online these days. I didn’t because there are too many variations in products and would prefer you do so with the ones you choose.
- Whenever possible, cook with whole, organic foods that are free from additives, pesticides, and hormones. Your body and the environment will both thank you.
Recommendations for Cooking from Scratch:
- If you aren’t already adept at cooking, watch some cooking shows and read a lot of recipes and how-to’s. You don’t need to own all the fancy equipment they have or do all the fancy things they do, but you do need a good foundation in understanding the art and chemistry of cooking.
- Once you’ve found meals you love and have success with, cook them in large batches and freeze them into individual meals. This way you won’t feel tied to your stove and you’ll have the occasional day off without using convenience foods or eating out and risking exposure to foods that will make you sick.
- If you don’t already have one, invest in a 6-7 quart crock pot. I do a lot of meals in the crock pot and the bigger the better, since that means I can make more at one time.
- Don’t be afraid to experiment a little and carry knowledge forward from one recipe to the next. Recipes are great, but what you bring to them can add something really special and unique.
- Try making the things you love without the offending ingredients and see how they turn out (unless it’s a primary ingredient, of course). I thought I was going to have to give up on my beloved Latin and Mediterranean foods, but I’m finding that most are just fine with personal modifications. No, I can’t buy a jar of spaghetti sauce or pre-made enchilada sauce, but I can make my own without trigger foods and it still tastes great (in fact, it’s better than the processed stuff I was eating)! I may never be able to enjoy another grilled portobella or a rich alfredo again, but I can devour any kind of homemade enchilada I’d like.
- Buy an instant read meat thermometer and keep a meat temperature chart handy in your kitchen. Not only does cooking by temperature yield better results, it’s imperative for people with compromised immune systems to ensure that they’re cooking meat to safe temperatures, particularly when it comes to pork and poultry, but you also don’t want to overcook it and dry it out.
Have a low FODMAP recipe you love? Send it to me and I’ll share it!