Nourished & Gluten and Allergen Free Expo


Last weekend I had the great pleasure of attending Nourished-Food Blogger Conference and the Gluten and Allergen Free Expo in Chicago. I had high expectations. After all, the ladies who planned the events, Jen Cafferty of Gluten Free Life and Amy Green of Simply Sugar and Gluten Free are phenoms in the gluten free world. I was not disappointed. In fact, I was completely blow away. Jen and Amy went to great lengths to provide an incredible variety of experts in the field to teach us about the practicalities of blogging (like social media how-to’s, publishing your work, partnering with brands, getting the media to take notice, recipe development and photography tips) as well as veteran cookbook authors and prize-winning bakers to teach baking and cooking classes. The blogger conference drew in just over 100 bloggers, some just starting out and some more experienced as well as those simply wanting to be a part of the gluten free community. Over 4,200 people attended the expo where more than 100 vendors were giving out samples of products geared towards gluten free living.

Since becoming gluten free in September, after finding out I had Celiac Disease, I have never been in an environment where I felt so supported, so encouraged, so optimistic about the future, and so very safe. To be around thousands of people who share this lifestyle was simply overwhelming. I teared up several times, on Friday especially, as we shared our stories, struggles, and successes. I made so many new professional contacts, and so many new friends. And I can’t wait for next year. Below is a list of some of the folks I had the opportunity to met this weekend. Please support them by visiting their websites, “liking” them on Facebook and following them on Twitter. They are all fabulous resources on gluten free living. Please let me know if I forgot you or if you would like me to add you to the list!

Kyra Bussanich of Crave Gluten Free Bake Shop

Shannon Brown of Enjoying Gluten-Free Life

Suzanne Florek of Salty Fig

Annelies Zijderveld of Attune Foods

Shannon Matthews of Earthly Eater

Robin Bengtson of Robin’s Ravenous Writes

Miriam Pearl of Delicious Without

Dr. Liz Kaltman of The Nourishing Table

Tess Masters of The Blender Girl

Colette Martin of Learning to Bake Allergen-Free

Miachel Pruett of Spiced Curiosity

Taryn Fixel of Ingredient 1

Kim Lutz of Welcoming Kitchen

Andrea Kosinski of Andrea’s Gluten-Free

Kelly LeBerthon of McKee’s Gluten Free

Cybele Pascal of Allergy Free Cook

Brandy Wendler of A Spoonful of Wellness

Pete and Kelli Bronski of No Gluten, No Problem

Laura Russell of Notes from a Gluten Free Kitchen

Karen Morgan of Blackbird Bakery

Melissa of Stockpiling Moms

Lauren-Lucille of The Celiac Diva

Silvana Nardone of Easy Eats

Amie Valpone of The Healthy Apple

Ricki Heller of Diet Dessert N Dogs

Melanie of Grecian Garden

Mary Fran of FrannyCakes

Tickets are now on sale for the Gluten and Allergen Free Expo to be held on September 8-9 in Dallas. I highly encourage you to go so that you too can feel supported and encouraged and truly nourished. And you won’t leave hungry…or lonely, I promise.

{Photo, clockwise from top: Mescal Margaritas from Frontera Grill, me with Karen Morgan, author of Blackbird Bakery Gluten Free, me with Mrs. Alaska Brandy Wendler, me with Kelly LeBerthon, the river in Chicago, Chicago building, fountain in Millennium Park, “The Bean” in Millennium Park, amazing, gluten-free sandwiches served at Nourished, the tulips (!!!) in Millennium Park, Laura Russell of Gluten Free Asian Cooking with Mrs. Alaska Brandy Wendler, me with Kelly LeBerthon reflected in “The Bean”, more tulips in downtown Chicago.}


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  1. What, no mention of FrannyCakes? I kid!

    I am so glad that it was worth while for you!

    One day we will have to meet! Are you going to Dallas? I think I might go again this year…

    1. OMG. Duh. Adding it now! I’d love to go…got to see if I’ve got room in the calendar (and budget). 😉

  2. Beautiful recap, Allison. It truly was a memorable event that showed the strength of our wonderful gluten free community. Thanks for including a link to my blog! 🙂

    1. You’re very welcome Melissa! 🙂

  3. Great recap! Lovely to meet you as well–and thanks for the mention! 🙂

  4. miriam pearl says:

    So nice to meet you Alison! It was amazing to be amongst amazing people, great food and learning environment. Thrilled to be included!

  5. I do have an odd question: is there any food out there that is worth getting sick to experience? I know so many people that give me that look like ‘just one bite of pizza/licorice/bread wont kill you’ and I wonder if others have the same battle I have. Is any food good and unique enough that it is worth getting sick over (e.g., a real french baguette)?

    I realize you are very busy but if you or anyone have any thoughts I would love to hear them on here, in email. or in response to my blog.


    I hope to hear from you


  6. Have you thought about going national?? Is there a way to at least order products and have them delivered in a cold truck at any time of year to customers in Columbus, Ohio? I don’t have time to bake, and finding a good provider of gluten free pastry would keep me out of trouble. Can your open a store in Columbus Ohio??

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