Sweet, Savory, and Free: Insanely Delicious Plant-Based Recipes without Any of the Top 8 Food Allergens

Sweet, Savory, and Free: Insanely Delicious Plant-Based Recipes without Any of the Top 8 Food Allergens

by Debbie Adler
Sweet, Savory, and Free: Insanely Delicious Plant-Based Recipes without Any of the Top 8 Food Allergens

Sweet, Savory, and Free: Insanely Delicious Plant-Based Recipes without Any of the Top 8 Food Allergens

by Debbie Adler


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Eat Sweet, Savory, and Free with Debbie Adler’s Mouthwatering Plant-Based Recipes, Free of the Top 8 Allergens

In 2013, Debbie Adler’s Sweet Debbie’s Organic Treats: Allergy-Free and Vegan Recipes From the Famous Los Angeles Bakery proved that cooking for those with allergies and food sensitivities doesn’t mean giving up dessert.

Now Sweet Debbie goes savory with more than 100 plant-based recipes free of the top eight food allergens—dairy, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, wheat, fish, and shellfish—plus free of refined sugar and oils.

Motivated by her own son’s life-threatening allergies, Adler has spent the last six years creating meals to nourish and delight her entire family—meals that are both savory and safe—including:

Lemon Basil Blueberry Muffins
Sweet Miso Forbidden Rice Ramen Noodle Bowl
Roasted Butternut Squash Enchilada Rounds
Yam Gnocchi with Sriracha Pesto
Mediterranean Quinoa Burgers
Spanakopita Enchiladas with Roasted Red Pepper Cream Sauce
Cinnamon Raisin Bread
Cafe Macchiato Sandwich Cookies

Debbie’s super satiating, divinely delicious, and accessibly easy-to-prepare recipes show just how incredible, versatile, and flavorful allergy-free, plant-based cooking can be! Her entrees, pastas, soups, sides, breads, and sweets are a guaranteed—and guaranteed safe—hit for school, kids’ parties, work events, and more.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781944648046
Publisher: BenBella Books, Inc.
Publication date: 06/06/2017
Pages: 288
Sales rank: 578,560
Product dimensions: 6.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Debbie Adler is the owner of the nationally renown, allergyfree, vegan, glutenfree and sugarfree bakery Sweet Debbie's Organic Cupcakes in Los Angeles. She is also author of the critically acclaimed, award-winning cookbook Sweet Debbie's Organic Treats: Allergy-free & Vegan Recipes from the Famous Los Angeles Bakery.

Debbie has appeared on national television and radio shows such as NBC's Nightly News and NPR's Here & Now, as well as in the Los Angeles Times and other national publications.

Read an Excerpt


Just Haves

I know the scenario all too well. You're super excited about trying a new recipe from a cookbook you just purchased. You gather all the foodstuffs you just bought at the grocery store and online and now it's time to ... wait. You realize you're missing one key ingredient that precludes you from making the recipe right here and now. The thought of schlepping back to the store gives you a spasm of despair. You ditch the idea of cooking and make popcorn.

I've been there, I've done that, and I'm here to help you prevent it from happening ever again (at least with this cookbook). I'm giving you the list of things you should JUST HAVE in your pantry, fridge, freezer, cupboard, and handbag (you never know).

In the Resources section (see page 258), I provide a list of trusted companies whose manufacturing practices limit the chances of cross-contamination when allergic reactions are a concern. You should always call the company yourself (you can usually find the contact information on the packaging) if you have any questions.

It may be tempting to buy some of these ingredients in bulk to save money, but I urge you not to do so because of the high risk of cross-contamination. If food allergies aren't a concern, then by all means, buy in bulk.

Herbs and Spices

Basil – Crushed, sun-dried basil, used mostly in the Italian recipes in this book, is a member of the mint family.

Chipotle Chili Powder – This is a pure blend of dried chipotle chilis, which are smoked, dried jalapeños. This spice is used mostly in Mexican dishes and sometimes to turn up the heat in chocolate. If you are allergic to any kind of sweet or hot pepper, you should not use this ingredient.

Cinnamon – This warm, aromatic spice comes from the curly bark of a variety of trees. It is used in both savory and sweet recipes.

Coriander – Before coriander is dried into seeds to make the spice, coriander leaves are also known as cilantro. Coriander as a spice has a lemony/lime essence and is very fragrant.

Cumin – A member of the parsley family, cumin has a nutty/peppery fragrance and taste, and is used in a variety of cuisines, including Mexican, Indian, and Tex-Mex.

Curry Powder – This powder mix usually contains a combination of coriander, turmeric, cumin, fenugreek, and chili peppers. Curry powder is used in rice, curries, soups, and sauces. Since there is flexibility, you can easily blend your own medley of curry powder spices depending on your preference and allergies. In the Resources section, I give you the names of companies whose curry spices I love and trust due to their meticulous manufacturing practices.

Dill – This herb is related to celery. The fernlike leaves of dill can be freeze-dried and used as an aromatic addition to soups, potatoes, and many other dishes. My favorite use of fresh dill is snipping the fronds into Matzo Ball Soup (page 58) and my Spanakopita Enchiladas (page 140).

Garlic Powder – This is dehydrated garlic that is ground into a powder. It is most commonly used in Italian dishes.

Nutmeg – Poor Meg. She's really a seed, but because of the unfortunate name her parents gave her, people think she's a nut. She is a warm, pungent spice that you can add to sweet dishes that contain pumpkin, and savory ones that include creamy greens.

Onion Powder – This is onion that is made into a powder using dehydration or freeze-drying methods. It is generally used in sauces, soups, and pasta dishes or anywhere you want onion flavor without hunks of onion.

Oregano – Part of the mint family and a second cousin to marjoram, this aromatic, pungent herb is generally used in Italian dishes.

Red Pepper Flakes – This is also called crushed red pepper and is made from dried red chili peppers, usually cayenne. If you are allergic to any kind of chili peppers you should not use red pepper flakes.

Smoked Paprika – If paprika is made from crushed dried chilis, then smoked paprika is made from smoked, dried chilis. The effect is dramatic and the flavor of the smoked variety is more full-bodied. If you have an allergy to any kind of bell, jalapeño, or other pepper, not including black pepper, you should not use paprika of any sort.

Thyme – A close relative of oregano, thyme has a rustic profile and is a wonderful addition to vegetable and pasta dishes.

Turmeric – Related to the ginger family, turmeric has a warm, peppery flavor and fragrance. It is most famous for its use in curries. Turmeric has the potential to create hives on contact, but that is rare.


Chickpea Miso Paste – Since soy is considered one of the top eight allergens, I choose to use chickpea miso instead of conventional miso, which contains soybeans. This is the perfect substitute as it is just as flavorful and can be used exactly the same way as the original. I am so grateful some clever companies thought to do this. I use Miso Master. See Resources for more information.

Coconut Aminos – These aminos are your amigos. They are the perfect swap for soy sauce as they are free of soy and gluten. The coconut sap from which these are derived is high in amino acids, which are key components to building protein. If you are worried that they come from coconut, please note that coconuts are not tree nuts. They are drupes, or, in other words, fruits with a big, fat pit in the middle. Almost every savory recipe in this cookbook uses coconut aminos, so stock up. Although a tad expensive, this amazing product reaps nutritional and health benefits that are priceless. I use Coconut Secret brand. See Resources for more information.

Green Curry Paste – An indispensible addition to my Green Curry Portobellos (page 152), this paste contains lemongrass, Thai ginger, green chilis, and zesty, fragrant spices. Luckily for us, there is a company or two out there who offer dairy-free, vegan, gluten-free curry paste, and I tell you all about them in the Resources section.

Hot Sauce – Usually made from jalapeño peppers, vinegar, garlic, and salt, and variations thereof, hot sauce adds flavorful, strategically placed heat wherever you aim it. If you prefer to make your own rather than buy it, I provide a kick-keister, simple blueprint in my "Recipes within Recipes" chapter.

Liquid Smoke – This innocuous concoction of water and hickory smoke makes food taste like it was cured. Just a drop goes a long way, and the effects are dramatic. I highly recommend you keep a bottle in your fridge so you have it when it's called for.

Nutritional Yeast – I beg of you to stock up on this stuff. And if you don't have room in your pantry, give it its own parking space in your garage if you have to. I use it liberally in my recipes when I need cheese-like flavor. Nutritional yeast is deactivated yeast that's been grown on molasses. And true to its name, it is naturally nutritious and fortified with vitamin B. And if you're nice to it and provide it a good home, nutritional yeast allows you to call it "nooch."

Prepared Horseradish – This refers to the addition of vinegar to the root vegetable: horseradish. It is a potent spice that I love to use on Kasha Knishes (page 192), Krab Kakes (page 164), and even my Falafel Bowl (page 138). If you care to make your own, I have a recipe for you in the "Recipes within Recipes" chapter.

Spicy Mustard – This is my mustard of choice, which means it is made with the more potent brown mustard seeds rather than yellow or white. Mustard seed has the potential to cause allergic reactions, though this is not a common occurrence.

Sriracha Sauce – This is a type of hot or chili sauce that is slightly sweet. My only regret about Sriracha is that I didn't discover it sooner. So now I'm making up for lost time and I use it wherever I can. If you don't want to use store-bought, I provide a simple, out-of-this-world recipe in the "Recipes within Recipes" chapter.

Wasabi Powder – With this miraculous mix of horseradish, spirulina, and turmeric, all you have to do to get wasabi is add water. It makes an appearance in the Ultimate Boodle (Buddha Noodle) Bowl (page 156), so if you're interested, just keep this powder on deck. I use Hime brand. See Resources for more information.

Worcestershire Sauce – The conventional way to make this sauce is with barley malt vinegar, molasses, sugar, anchovies, and salt. Thankfully, there are vegan, gluten-free versions available that I tell you about in the Resources section. I use the Wizard's brand.


Chia Seeds – These are related to the mint family and provide maximum nutrition in minimal square footage. These tiny black or sometimes white seeds come in very handy for nutritional purposes but also function as a binder in gluten-free baking and cooking. If you are allergic to mustard or sesame seeds, you may also be allergic to chia seeds.

Hemp Seeds – If you don't believe in miracles, these teeny-weeny little seeds will change your mind. They contain the most powerful nutrition out of any seed in the world. I use them generously throughout the book, so you should always have them on hand.

Pumpkin Seeds – Also known as pepitas, pumpkin seeds are nutrient dense, hypoallergenic, and supremely tasty. I put shelled pumpkin seeds to good use in my Parmezan mix (page 24) and other strategic places in my recipes.

Sunflower Seeds – Since nuts are usually forbidden in an allergy-free kitchen, we turn to shelled sunflower seeds to save the day. I think I should mention that sunflower seeds are not really seeds. They are technically a fruit. When roasted and pureed, sunflower seeds imitate peanut butter to a T. They serve as a base for my Parmezan mix (page 24) as well as my Cheezy Marinara Sauce (page 112). They make an appearance in many other recipes in this book, so keep them in stock and you will be all set. In my "Recipes within Recipes" chapter, you will see how easy it is to make your own sunflower seed butter without any added oils.

Grains, Flours, and Powders

Amaranth Flour – An earthy, nutty seed, amaranth is a perfect protein unto itself and an indispensable addition to gluten-free baking. Stock this flour in your cupboard to make some of the bread and baked goods recipes in this cookbook.

Brown Rice Paper Wraps – I use these wrappers for Pad Thai Spring Rolls (page 114) and Egg Rolls (page 128). I prefer the Star Anise Foods brand. See Resources for more information.

Buckwheat – Buckwheat is related to rhubarb and is neither a grain nor made of wheat. It is a gluten-free seed that is really a fruit. For the purposes of this book, you will need to get buckwheat groats, which is the raw, unhulled, unroasted version of buckwheat, unless a recipe calls for kasha, in which case you'll get the roasted buckwheat groats. Where necessary you can easily grind the raw, unroasted groats into flour using a coffee grinder when a recipe calls for it.

Cacao Powder – I always have non-alkali, organic cacao powder in my pantry for chocolate baking cravings. Ever get those?

Chickpea Flour – This flour, made from ground, dried chickpeas, takes on an egg-like flavor when added to vegan omelets and French toast.

Guar Gum – This powder made from ground guar beans is used in gluten-free baking as a binder.

Kasha – This is the same as buckwheat groats, but toasted. It comes in three sizes: fine, medium, and whole. So depending on how big you like your groat, I give you creative freedom in choosing which to use in these recipes.

Millet Flour – This is a very mild and very easily digestible gluten-free grain. It is considered hypoallergenic and contains serotonin, so you can meditate while you bake.

Psyllium Husk Powder – I have a confession to make. I avoided using psyllium in my bread recipes for the longest time because I was afraid of it. Afraid of what, I don't know, but something came over me when writing "The Bread Basket" chapter in this book that nudged me in the direction of this safe and beneficial fiber from the Plantago ovata plant. Once I started incorporating it into the recipes, I couldn't believe how much better the breads tasted. And not only that, but the texture became that of regular bread. So I can't emphasize enough how important this ingredient is when making gluten-free breads. Be brave and just have it in stock. I use Frontier brand. See Resources for more information.

Quinoa Flour and Flakes – A complete protein and really a seed, not a grain, quinoa contains the full amino acid spectrum and is used frequently in this book in its many incarnations. I use the flour version in my gluten-free flour mix, and I use the flakes to make matzo balls and spinach dumplings. Quinoa itself is used throughout. I prefer Ancient Grains Hot Cereal Quinoa Flakes. See Resources for more information.

Ramen Noodles – I use the gluten-free ramen noodles made by Lotus Foods. See Resources for more information.

Rice Bran – If you don't use wheat bran due to the gluten, rice bran provides that bran-like flavor and fiber you need and crave when baking certain muffins and scones. It comes in handy in my Raisin Bran Scones (page 37).

Rolled Oats – Oats are naturally gluten-free, but because they are usually grown in fields with wheat, a lot of cross-contamination occurs if the wind blows a little too hard. So to be safe, buy oats that say "gluten-free" on the packaging if you have a gluten sensitivity or celiac disease.

Sorghum Flour – This gluten-free flour imitates wheat flour on point and is used extensively in this book as well as in my gluten-free flour mix in the "Recipes within Recipes" chapter.

Sweet White Rice Flour – This starchy flour, made from sticky rice, is a great component of dumpling doughs and certain breads. It has a binding power that most gluten-free flours do not have.

Tapioca Flour – This is the starch you will use in several bread recipes as well as in my gluten-free flour mix. I also use it as a thickener in some of the sauces.

Teff Flour – This gluten-free grain comes in many colors, and I highly suggest you use the ivory hue due to its mild flavor and smooth texture. You can easily get this online and I let you know where in the Resources section.


Coconut Nectar – This is my go-to sweetener for just about everything sweet in this book. Coconut nectar is derived from the sap of the coconut tree and is low glycemic and mineral dense. I use Coconut Secret brand. See Resources for more information.

Coconut Sugar – This is a low-glycemic sweetener derived from the coconut palm. I use it in some of my desserts and "Morning Munchies" recipes.

Erythritol – A natural, low-glycemic sugar substitute that is derived from fruits and vegetables, erythritol contains almost zero calories. I only use the powdered erythritol for my frostings. My favorite brand is Swerve. See Resources for more information.

Maple Syrup – This sweetener is used sparsely in this book, but when it is called for, I highly suggest you use Grade B if you can find it. It is higher in minerals than Grade A and has a more distinct, delicious maple flavor.

Medjool Dates – This chewy, decadent dried fruit from the date palm tree is reminiscent of a caramel and profoundly nutritious. I chop them into baked goods and also grind them into a date paste for bulk and sweetness.

Stevia Powder – In certain recipes I heighten the sweetness just a tad with stevia powder, which is a natural sweetener from the stevia plant and has zero calories. Some people say they don't like its aftertaste, but I use it in such small quantities that this is not an issue.

Canned and Packaged Goods

Cannellini Beans – These medium-size Italian beans, also known as white kidney beans, have a silky smooth texture that works like a charm for purees. I even make mayonnaise with them. If you have an allergy to legumes, such as peanuts or peas, you may be allergic to cannellini beans.

Chickpeas – Also known as garbanzo beans, chickpeas are used as the base for my Roasted Root Vegetable Hummus (page 171) and Falafel Bowl (page 138) recipes. Chickpeas are legumes, so if you have an allergy to peanuts, peas, or other beans, you might also react to chickpeas.

Chocolate Chips – It's good to have these around in cases when you just have to bake a batch of cookies. I use Lily's brand dairy-free, sugar-free chocolate chips. See Resources for more information.

Fire-Roasted Tomatoes – I use these for my enchilada sauce, so a 15-ounce can is always in my cupboard.


Excerpted from "Sweet, Savory & Free"
by .
Copyright © 2017 Debbie Adler.
Excerpted by permission of BenBella Books, Inc..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents


CHAPTER 1: Just Haves

CHAPTER 2: Fully Equipped

CHAPTER 3: Recipes within Recipes (Homemade Staples)

CHAPTER 4: Morning Munchies

CHAPTER 5: Soup Is Good Food

CHAPTER 6: Meals in Muffin Tins and Ramekins

CHAPTER 7: Pizza, Pasta, Rice, and Noodles

CHAPTER 8: The Main Attraction

CHAPTER 9: The Side Show

CHAPTER 10: The Bread Basket

CHAPTER 11: A Feast of Sweets




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