7 Top Tips for Shopping with Food Allergies

My son was 5 months old when we finally established that the reason for his slow weight gain, reflux, explosive nappies, wheezing and general discomfort was CMPA – Cows’ Milk Protein Allergy.

As we were just about to  embark on weaning we had to learn to shop for allergies pretty quickly, and by this point my maternity pay had stopped so we had to do it on a budget. One stroll down the “free from” aisle in any supermarket will tell you that allergy shopping can get pretty expensive pretty quickly, so here are my top tips for allergy shopping:

1. Plan meals around things that don’t usually contain your allergen(s)

It might seem obvious but sometimes its hard to see past ‘replacement’ items and look at what is already available to you. For us there are a lot of things that are fine to eat without changing anything. Pasta, noodles, rice, bread and potatoes are usually all dairy free as are fresh fruit and veg and meats. for people with a gluten allergy there is still rice, potatoes and rice noodles before you have to start looking at ‘free from’ alternatives.

2.  Search for vegan recipes rather than “dairy free” or “egg free”

Veganism is growing in popularity fast, there are a huge amount of vegan recipes out there that you can make as they are or add whatever you like. Dairy free and egg free are a little more niche when it comes to cooking blogs and videos. Having a good selection of meal ideas is going to make your planning and shopping easier and cheaper.

3. Swerve the free from aisle and look at value products.

My favourite example is garlic bread. In Tesco they sell a free from garlic baguette for £2.50 and an Everyday Value garlic baguette for 35p. Both are dairy free. Asda’s own brand mince pies are 89p and vegan so dairy and egg free and Lidl ‘Simply’ white loaf is the unicorn of breads – it is dairy free like most bread but also contains no soya flour. **Correct at the date of my last shop in each supermarket**

4. ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS read the label.

Sometimes they sneak milk products into the funniest of places, like the sliced sandwich chicken in ASDA or Bernard Matthews Turkey slices with added milk proteins. Even if you’ve had something before, check again because recipes change.

Don’t just check the ingredients though, the allergy advice below can be important. A lot of products in Sainsbury’s and ASDA have the phrase “not suitable for milk allergy sufferers due to manufacturing methods”. This basically means that there is a very high chance of cross contamination with milk products.

5. Get your chocolate fix on the cheap

There are free from chocolate options available but normal dark chocolate is often dairy free and a fraction of the cost. Instant hot chocolate powders contain milk but Cadbury Drinking Chocolate has a dairy free recipe (it says may contain traces which can be fine in some families) so pop some of that in a cup of oat milk and have a creamy hot chocolate.  Bourbon biscuits, for the most part, are also dairy free but that can vary massively from brand to brand so check the packet!

6. Shop around

Alternative milks are perhaps one of the unavoidable free from products. We like oat milk best of all and that can come with a pretty hefty price tag. ASDA is usually the cheapest for fortified Oatly and Morrisons for Oatly Barista when we can get to one. Sometimes they come up on offer on Amazon or  other online retailers so its worth checking around from time to time and stocking up when you find your milk at a good price. Recently, Alpro Hazelnut milk was on 3 for £3 so I stocked up on that for myself and let my son keep drinking our more pricey oat milk stash.

7. Find other allergy families

The best source of information, recipes and bargain tip offs is other people with allergies. I’m in several Facebook support groups and when there’s an offer on they always let us know. They will share their experiences with certain products and let us know if they are worth buying or whether to give them a miss.  I also have some local friends whose children have allergies and it can be much easier to have lunch dates with them because their food will either be safe to share or they will understand the importance of the children not sharing.

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ENDED: Mummykind’s BIG Birthday GIVEAWAY!

Just in case we haven’t been raving about it often enough, today’s the day that Mummykind turns 1!

It’s been a pretty amazing year, and so we had to have a pretty amazing celebration to mark it! I am pleased to announce that this marks our BIG birthday giveaway going live – and you only have 2 weeks to enter, but 2 chances to win! Enter using the giveaway gadget at the bottom of this blogpost to be considered for both!

Giveaway No. 1…

Our first giveaway is local to mums in Kent, UK only! (It wouldn’t be much use if you lived somewhere else after all!)

A Mummykind Mug!

Introducing Mummykind merchandise! That’s right, you can win your very own Mummykind mug featuring our logo and one of four phrases from our blogposts – it will be a lucky draw as to which one you get!

1. “My brain is mush from all the parenting” – from Maria’s post
2. “Yes, I grew a tiny human, but I still have legitimate complaints about the process” – from Sarah’s post
3. “Give mum a high five. We’re awesome!” – from Charlie’s post
4. “The truth is, we’re all simply winging it” – from Aimee’s post

A free Mums in Ashford annual membership card!

This membership card entitles you to exclusive discounts worth £100s on businesses and services, including fun children’s and family activities, restaurants and more, in the Ashford area! The normal value of the card is £10, so even if you decide you’ll go ahead and buy one, you’re still winning!

Giveaway No. 2…

The second giveaway will choose a winner from the USA!

$25.00 Gift Voucher to spend at BeLove Kids! 

Mummykind has recently become an affiliate of this lovely US clothing company, founded by Racquel Tolson after she lost her first daughter to Congenital Central Hypoventilation Syndrome (CCHS). With a mission to give back to kids with CCHS, BE LOVE kids was created.
Plus, if you shop again, you can use the discount code “mummykind” at the checkout to save 20% off your order.*

Giveaway No. 3…

Here it is! The BIGGEST GIVEAWAY YET! Open to all UK entrants. And here’s what you could win……….

A personalised lunchbox and water bottle from Petit Fernand!

You can easily personalise these items on the website to include different colours, characters and lettering! Petit Fernand also have a range of iron on personalised name labels and sticky labels for school supplies and clothing – Mummykind were lucky enough to review some of these amazing products for free and you can read our review here!

A voucher for a free personalised framed floral digital print from Florificent!

Tatjana’s beautiful designs at Florificent make for perfect gifts or additions to the home decor! With our giveaway, you’re in with a chance to win a personalised floral digital print – this can be initials or names, just have a browse of Florificent’s Facebook page or Etsy store to see what’s available!

A free PlayBag from The PlayBag Company!

Another local business in the South East of England! The PlayBag Company has the perfect solution to your kids’ boredom on days out with the family. If you’ve got a long train or car journey coming up, a PlayBag to keep your children entertained is a must!

The PlayBags roll out into a play mat and quickly tidy up into a bag carrying any of your children’s toys and the play mat inside. You can tidy up the play area just by securing 3 poppers on each side! As if that isn’t any mum’s dream?! This is the design that you are in for a chance to win!

A pack of 10 cloth nappy wipes from Clayton’s Cloth!

If you haven’t already seen the benefits of using cloth nappies and wipes from Maria’s post, you can try them for yourself with this complementary pack from WAHM Lacie over at Clayton’s Cloth!

A Mummykind Mug!

Introducing Mummykind merchandise! That’s right, you can win your very own Mummykind mug featuring our logo and one of four phrases from our blogposts – it will be a lucky draw as to which one you get!

1. “My brain is mush from all the parenting” – from Maria’s post
2. “Yes, I grew a tiny human, but I still have legitimate complaints about the process” – from Sarah’s post
3. “Give mum a high five. We’re awesome!” – from Charlie’s post
4. “The truth is, we’re all simply winging it” – from Aimee’s post
And if you want to buy your own, simply send us a Facebook message here! If you’re not on Facebook you can also tweet us (@mummykindoff) or email us (mummykind@gmail.com).

Here’s how you can enter:

T&Cs:
UK and USA entrants only. 
18+. 
3 winners will be chosen. 
1 from Kent, UK for Giveaway no.1, 1 from anywhere in the USA for Giveaway no.2, and 1 from anywhere in the UK for Giveaway no.3

Giveaway no. 1 and 3 ONLY:
The winners must notify Mummykind of their home addresses within 7 days of the draw being announced in order for us to arrange delivery of the prizes. Prizes will be sent via Royal Mail’s Second Class Signed For service. If the winners do not notify Mummykind of their address within 7 days, Mummykind reserves the right to draw a new winner, or 2 new winners if necessary. 

Giveaway no.2 ONLY:
The winner must notify Mummykind of their email address within 7 days of the draw being announced in order for us to arrange for you digital voucher to reach you. If the winner does not notify Mummykind of their email address within 7 days, Mummykind reserves the right to draw a new winner if necessary.
*offer excludes co-sleepers and blankets.