Our multiple food-allergic, gluten-free adult child (avoiding the top 8 food allergens except soy) recently completed her first year of college at University two hours away. She had a roommate and suite-mates and shared a kitchen with six other young women. She had her own refrigerator. Because of the number and severity of her food allergies, she needed to make 100% of her own meals.
While I had armed her with a small binder full of her favorite recipes and tried to make sure she knew how to make them, during her first year she relied mostly on Pacific Foods Organic Santa Fe Style Chicken Soup. How this happened was part Mom, part child, and was quite frankly, the best thing to happen to her.
Being the only child and having food allergies put her at a distinct advantage when it came to home cooked meals. I learned how to cook, bake and shop in a most excellent and satisfying (to her) way. In our home, opening up a pre-prepared meal, or ordering take-out never happened – because mostly it couldn’t.
When we dropped her off at her dorm room in August, we unpacked measuring cups, measuring spoons, spices, broths, marinara sauce, and ingredients with which she could prepare a meal. The reality was – as we were soon to find out – that she doesn’t like to cook, didn’t really have time to cook, and the refrigerator (small apartment sized) wasn’t really set up to hold a lot and didn’t work for storing, well, anything much but drinks and condiments. So just in case, I had packed two boxes of Pacific Foods soup: the Pacific Foods Organic Santa Fe Style Chicken Soup, and the Organic Chicken and Wild Rice Soup.
Of course, we worried about her – was she going to be able to make 100% of her meals and get the nutrients she needed?
In October, I received a text:
“I opened and ate one of the boxed soups today and they were surprisingly good!”
The “boxed soups” that she was referring to were the and Pacific Foods Organic Santa Fe Style Chicken Soup (dairy-free, soy-free)* and the Organic Chicken and Wild Rice Soup (gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, wheat-free).
As I soon learned, her best friend from middle school who was at University with her, also came to love the soups.
The next thing I knew I was ordering cases of the soups weekly from Amazon.com.
When we moved her out of the dorm a few weeks ago, empty boxes of the soup were overflowing in her trashcan. I had to laugh. What I thought would happen during her first year away, and what actually happened were two different things.
I was (and continue to be) eternally grateful for the excellent Organic Chicken and Wild Rice Soup and Organic Santa Fe Style Chicken Soup that Pacific Foods has created. I wanted to do something to honor this excellent brand and inform others who were dealing with children who had multiple food allergies and wondering what their kids are going to eat this summer at camp or college. As always, our allergies are not your allergies, so make sure you contact them if you have any questions.
I wrote Pacific Foods and told them how we discovered their soups and how happy we were. They were thrilled to support me in this giveaway.
Are you planning a summer trip away from home and wondering what to bring or buy that would make your food allergy and gluten-free management easier? Consider entering my giveaway and you can try these wonderful soups for free!
For the month of June, you may enter the giveaway once a day to win a case of Pacific Foods boxed soups and broths. Click on the link below to see how it works:
* Although Pacific Foods says that this soup is soy-free and dairy-free, our wheat allergic, gluten-free child can have this safely. When I wrote them to ask them why the product is not “gluten-free or wheat free” they responded that the black beans aren’t guaranteed to be wheat-free or gluten-free. If you have any questions about their product, contact them directly: www.pacificfoods.com