Breakfast can be one of the toughest meals for those on a gluten-free diet when attending meetings and events, especially when we order so many continental breakfasts that are loaded with pastries, bagels and muffins. With a few modifications, I think that breakfast options for attendees with celiac disease and other gluten sensitivities can be quite the opposite. Once you realize all the naturally gluten-free options that hotels and convention centers can offer, you can easily the possibilities you can offer your guests are endless!
2) Yogurt (dairy or non-dairy) topped with fresh fruit and/or toasted nuts, seeds, gluten-free granola homemade or pre-packaged from Udi’s
3) Oatmeal. This, of course must be certified gluten-free. Ask you catering partner if they are using brands like Bob’s Red Mill, Udi’s Gluten Free, or GF Harvest. Serve it plain with a variety of gluten-topping options – cinnamon, fruit, nuts. Or have them do something fun like this baked oatmeal.
4) Eggs. Hardboiled, scrambled, omelets, frittatas or fried. The options are endless as long as no wheat is thrown into the skillet. I love this broccoli frittata recipe.
5) Quinoa Bowls. Breakfast bowls are great since you can toss in just about anything, including leftover quinoa from yesterday’s lunch. Not only a fabulous way to reduce waste and starting your attendees day off with both protein and magnesium, which your body needs to produce energy. But, don’t serve it plain. The choices are endless. When I make it at home, I add nuts, cinnamon, blueberries and green apples.
6) Gluten-free bread or muffins. Some hotels are making them in-house, others are purchasing them from local gluten-free bakeries and others are purchasing pre-packed gluten-free muffins from companies like Udi’s. Make sure they are not put on the same tray or buffet as the “regular” muffins. Best option is to leave them packaged and serve directly to the guest to eliminate contamination.
I would be remiss if I did not provide one additional tip on serving these items to your celiac and gluten-free attendees. Although the items may be naturally gluten-free, if they are made in a kitchen, bar or other food outlet of the hotel or catering shop, which prepares other food items that contain gluten, you nor your catering partner can truly say these items are 100 percent gluten-free.
Due to the all-inclusive nature of most hotel and catering kitchens, guaranteeing that food items will not come in contact with potential allergens, including gluten, is impossible.
You need to inform your attendees that you and your catering partners are taking precautions when making their foods, but they should be aware that you cannot 100 percent guarantee that exposure to potential allergens will not occur.