Lactose Free

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don't miss dairy

Emily Stokes
I'm a lady who loves cheese, sour cream, & ice cream, but I recently became lactose intolerant. My key focus in recreating dairy recipes is taste, but I try to be as health conscious as possible. Some of my recipes are low lactose rather than dairy free. I'm also a writer, teacher, nanny, dog mom, housewife, native Yinzer, current Californian, and social organizer extraordinaire.

Lactose Free

Dairy-Free Chicken Broccoli Alfredo

I love cheesy pasta dishes. I was disappointed when I went back to Pittsburgh in August and had lunch at one of my favorite restaurants–Joe Mama’s–and realized that all of my usual orders were smothered in cheesy sauces: Hug Yo Belly Gemelli, Herbed Chicken and Penne, Nonna’s Gnocchi, and the list goes on.

Another Pittsburgh restaurant, Eat ‘n’ Park, was a common place for me and my husband to go for a quick lunch or dinner. Our usual was their Chicken Broccoli Alfredo. In college we loved to go to The Underground at Carnegie Mellon, where we would get a plate of hot pasta topped with creamy Alfredo sauce and marinara. The point is, I used to order Alfredo all the time.

I gave it up for awhile, refining my tastes by ordering complex pasta dishes at Italian places and trying new things with more nutrition. But lately I’ve been craving cheesy things.

The only solution to that is to experiment with dairy alternative products and to create masterpieces. My dairy free chicken broccoli Alfredo is definitely a masterpiece. It tastes better than the real thing and I’m serious.

I could eat this everyday!

I used the most realistic tasting dairy-free alternatives: Smart Balance Light Buttery Spread, Blue Diamond Almond Breeze Almond Milk, and Tofutti Better Than Sour Cream. Aged parmesan cheese has very little lactose, 0mg per serving, so it’s not going to bother lactose intolerant people in small amounts. In large amounts it will, so if you eat a lot be careful or take a Lactaid pill. It cannot be eaten by people with a milk allergy.

For a completely dairy-free version, I recommend using Vegan Grated Parmesan Cheese Alternative by Galaxy Nutritional Foods. There’s also a parmesan cheese alternative on the market called Parma. It’s made with walnuts, salt, and nutritional yeast. 

Dairy-Free Chicken Broccoli Alfredo
Serves 2
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Ingredients
  1. 3 tablespoons Smart Balance Light Buttery Spread
  2. 1 cup almond milk
  3. 1/2 cup Tofutti Better Than Sour Cream
  4. 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  5. 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  6. 1 tablespoon water
  7. 1/3 cup parmesan cheese or parmesan cheese alternative
  8. 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley, plus more for garnish
  9. 2 chicken breasts, sliced and grilled
  10. 1/2 lb of linguine
  11. 1 1/2 cups fresh broccoli, plus water for steaming
Instructions
  1. Timing is everything in this recipe so prep your ingredients before starting. Make sure your chicken breast is cooking before starting the sauce, pasta, and broccoli. I cut mine into four thin strips and started grilling them on my George Foreman Grill at the same time I started cooking the pasta. I also recommend broiling--6 to 8 minutes per side--for a grilled chicken taste. Start pasta by following the directions for cooking on the back of the box. Prep broccoli for quick light microwave steaming by putting it in a dish with a tablespoon of water and covering it.
  2. Once your pasta and chicken are cooking, start the sauce. Melt Smart Balance in a large saucepan over medium heat. After it is melted add almond milk, sour cream, and garlic powder. Whisk to combine.
  3. Dissolve the cornstarch in water in a small dish and gradually add to milk mixture, whisking constantly to avoid lumps. Bring sauce to a simmer. Cook for five minutes or until mixture has started to thicken. Add parmesan cheese and whisk to combine.
  4. While the sauce is thickening, steam fresh broccoli for two minutes in the microwave. Go back to the sauce, remove from heat, and stir in 1 tablespoon of fresh parsley.
  5. Cut your chicken into small strips and combine all ingredients in the saucepan to coat with the Alfredo sauce, alternatively you can layer them: pasta, chicken, broccoli, and sauce. Garnish with a sprig of parsley. Mangia!
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Buffalo Chicken Pizza with Soy and Goat Cheese

Here is one of our favorite things to make for dinner. It’s perfect for the person in your family who is lactose intolerant. You can make one side of the pizza with soy cheese, and one side with regular cheese. It works perfectly for me and my husband, and I get my pizza fix without worry. I even get to satisfy my cheese cravings by adding a sprinkle of goat cheese crumbles.

Goat cheese has less lactose than regular cheese. It bothers me in excessive amounts, but just adding a tiny sprinkle enhances the buffalo chicken and cheese flavor. If you can’t do any goat cheese, then eliminate it altogether, or just add it to your significant other’s side of the pizza. But it is a good alternative for people who have mild lactose intolerance. You can also try adding Parmesan cheese on top of the soy cheese to give it a more authentic cheese flavor. Hard, aged cheeses lose most of their lactose in the aging process. That means small amounts shouldn’t bother someone with lactose intolerance.

There are lots of cheese alternatives out there. My favorites are Trader Joe’s Soy Mozzarella and Daiya Mozzarella Style Shreds. I have only been able to find Daiya items at Whole Foods and Costco. Daiya cheese alternative is also gluten and soy free, so it’s perfect for people with multiple allergies. I don’t usually eat a cheese alternative by itself, but when combined with other ingredients soy cheese blends in just like the real thing.

Ingredients:

1 bag premixed pizza dough (We like Trader Joe’s Garlic and Herb dough)
Trader Joe’s Soy Mozarella Cheese, shredded to desired amount
1/4 cup goat cheese crumbles
1 12 ounce can white chicken, drained of liquid
1/4 cup Franks Buffalo Sauce
2 tablespoons Franks Buffalo Sauce
1/2 cup tomato basil marinara sauce
Flour for rolling dough
Course grind cornmeal (if using a pizza stone)

Directions:

1. If the pizza dough is refrigerated, let sit for 20 minutes before rolling.

pizza dough

2. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees Fahrenheit.

3. For the crispy on the outside, soft on the inside pizza, use a pizza stone. Heat in the oven for ten minutes before placing the pizza on it. You can also use a regular non-stick pan, just make a square shaped pizza. If you have a large flat cookie sheet, you can make a circular pizza on this. Or, if you have it, use a circular pizza pan.

3. In a small pan, combine the chicken and 1/4 cup of Buffalo Sauce. Cook until heated and the sauce is absorbed into the chicken.

chicken cooked with buffalo sauce in a pan.

4. On a clean surface, sprinkle a thin layer of flour. Roll out the pizza dough with a nonstick rolling pin, adding more flour as needed.

5. Remove the pizza stone from the oven and sprinkle with course grind cornmeal. Don’t use flour–it will only burn and your pizza will stick. Place the rolled dough on the pizza stone, rolling up the edges to make a crust if you desire, and cook in the oven for three to four minutes.

6. Remove the cooked pizza crust from the oven and get ready to put on your toppings.

Cooked pizza dough.

7. Spread the tomato basil marinara sauce on the pizza evenly. Using too much sauce will make the pizza soggy and hard to cut, but some people like their sauce, like me.

pizza dough with sauce spread on.

 

8. Sprinkle on your desired amount of soy mozzarella cheese.

Shredded soy mozzarella cheese.

9. Next, add the Buffalo Chicken in an even layer, topping with a sprinkle of crumbled goat cheese.

Pizza with cheese.

10. For the last topping, drizzle the 2 tablespoons of Buffalo Sauce all over the pizza.

11. Place in the oven and cook for 6-8 minutes, or until desired crispiness. Thoroughly enjoy.

 

Buffalo chicken pizza slices.

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Dairy Free Buffalo Chicken Dip

I never thought I would be able to eat this stuff again! I mean, the main ingredients are three types of cheese. I used a combination of cream cheese alternative and non dairy cheese to make this highly addictive dip much healthier than it’s original version. It’s completely free of lactose, trans fat, and the only cholesterol in it is added by the lean chicken! It tastes so amazing and so close to the original version you won’t even notice the difference! Even if you can eat dairy, don’t eat the regular version of this dip again–this recipe eliminates so much of the fat and cholesterol that you should not be putting into your body. Trust me, this is good.

Ingredients:

8oz This Is Not a Tub of Cream Cheese This Is a Tub of Non Dairy Spread from Trader Joes
2-3 tablespoons Franks Red Hot Sauce (depending on how spicy you want it)
5oz canned chicken
1/3 cup Daiya Chedder Style Shreds

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Soften the cream cheese alternative in the microwave for 30 seconds, then mix all ingredients together until well blended. It’s easier to blend if you mix the cream cheese and Frank’s first.

Canned chicken.

Cream cheese alternative.

Franks mixed with cream cheese alternative.

Cream cheese mixture with fake cheese.

3. Bake for 20 minutes to melt it all together and OMG the result is divine. Enjoy with some lime tortilla chips and tell me how much you love it.

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