Do you find yourself making two or even three meals a night to meet your family's dietary needs? When it comes to food issues—allergies, intolerances, and the like—a "one-for-all" dish that satisfies the whole family may seem impossible. But here's good news: Not only can you feed everyone easily and deliciously (once you learn some basics), you'll also probably improve the nutritional quality of your daily meals, including breakfast. Get started by trying these recipes and tips.

Chip Soup
Wheat-free, soy-free, nut-free, dairy-free
Serves about 10 / Even if kids pick them out, much of the mushrooms' immune-building benefits are steeped in the soup. Ingredient tips: Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce and roasted Hatch chilies come in small cans, often already chopped. Use corn chips with sesame seeds for extra calcium.

3 tablespoons avocado oil, or any high-heat oil
2 medium onions, coarsely chopped
8 whole cloves garlic
1 28-ounce can low-sodium tomatoes, diced or crushed
1 28-ounce can low-sodium roasted tomatoes, diced
8 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
7 cups sliced shiitake mushrooms, stems removed

Avocado chunks
Spinach, thinly sliced
Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, or roasted Hatch chilies, finely chopped
Goat cheese (optional)
Corn tortilla chips, crumbled

1. Heat oil over medium heat in a large, heavy pot or Dutch oven. Add onions and garlic and cook for about 10 minutes. If mixture gets dry, add a little water and stir occasionally. Cool a few minutes.

2. Working in batches, purée tomatoes in a food processor with onion-garlic mixture. Return to pot. Add broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and add mushrooms. Simmer 30 minutes or more (flavors will blend more the longer it simmers).

3. When ready to serve, place desired amounts of avocado, spinach, peppers, and goat cheese in bowls and ladle soup over all. Top with crumbled chips.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving (with 2 tablespoons avocado, 1/4 cup spinach, 1/2 teaspoon chipotle, 1 1/2 tablespoons goat cheese, and 4 chips):
Calories: 225 calories
% fat calories: 46%
Fat: 12g
Saturated Fat: 4g
Cholesterol: 10mg
Protein: 8g
Carbohydrate: 24g
Fiber: 5g
Sodium: 660mg

Nutty Vegetable Pasta
Wheat-free, dairy-free, egg-free
Serves 4-6 / This is the perfect substitute for those who miss peanut sauce. Serving tip: With the exception of the extra sauce, which you can save to enhance other meals, this is a dish you'll want to eat right away; it doesn't age gracefully, but it's so good. Ingredient tip: Although soba noodles are buckwheat noodles, they usually contain real wheat as well, so be sure to check the label. Buckwheat noodles generally do not stay in one long strand like noodles with gluten, so be prepared for smaller pasta pieces. Make-ahead tip: Use the leftover tahini mixture as a calcium-rich spread for crackers, a veggie dip, or a sauce over steamed greens.

3 cloves garlic
1/4 cup tahini
1/2 cup unsalted, creamy almond butter
2 1/2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1/4 cup low-sodium tamari (wheat-free soy sauce)
1/2 cup water or low-sodium vegetable broth, or a combination
7 ounces low-sodium, wheat-free soba noodles
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 8-ounce can sliced water chestnuts, drained
3 cups raw sliced vegetables (carrots, broccoli, mushrooms, zucchini, or your favorites)
Crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
Salt
Water, broth, or tamari, to moisten (optional)

1. Place garlic, tahini, almond butter, rice vinegar, tamari, and water or broth in a food processor; blend until smooth. Set aside. (Yield: 1 1/2 cups.)

2. Boil noodles about 8 minutes. While noodles are cooking, begin stir-frying sliced water chestnuts and all vegetables in olive oil in a wok or large frying pan over medium-high heat. When vegetables are crisp-tender (at least 5 minutes), season with crushed red pepper flakes, if desired, and salt to taste.

3. Drain noodles. Add noodles and about half of the tahini sauce to vegetables. Stir to coat. Add more water, broth, or tamari to moisten, if desired. Serve immediately.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Calories: 429 calories
% fat calories: 40
Fat: 20g
Saturated Fat: 2g
Cholesterol: 0mg
Protein: 14g
Carbohydrate: 56g
Fiber: 6g
Sodium: 479mg

Breakfast Bread Pudding
Wheat-free, soy-free, nut-free, dairy-free
Serves 4 / Breakfast is often tough for those who can't eat toast or cereal, but this supersimple, one-dish wonder is a crowd pleaser. Ingredient tips: You'll find stevia, a plant-based sweetener, in the supplements section of your natural grocery store. Buckwheat is not wheat at all, but rather a gluten-free relative of rhubarb. Cooking tip: This can be prepared ahead and doubled easily. Freeze leftovers to enjoy later, warmed in a toaster oven.

4 eggs
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/8-1/4 teaspoon powdered stevia (or 1 packet)
1/2 cup milk (soy, cow, or nut milk)
2 tablespoons cream of buckwheat
4 slices sprouted-rice bread (about 7 ounces total)
Blueberries and sliced fresh strawberries, or other fruit (optional)
Agave nectar or honey (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350°. In an 8x8-inch or 9x9-inch casserole dish, whisk together eggs, cinnamon, stevia, milk, and buckwheat. Cut each bread slice in half; place in egg mixture and let soak for about 10 minutes. (A couple of layers is fine, as long as the bread gets soaked. If making ahead, cover and refrigerate; remove from refrigerator 20 minutes before cooking.)

2. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for a few minutes. Top with fresh fruit and agave nectar or honey, if desired.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Calories: 214 calories
% fat calories: 30
Fat: 7g
Saturated Fat: 2g
Cholesterol: 212mg
Protein: 8g
Carbohydrate: 30g
Fiber: 2g
Sodium: 208mg

Turkey Meat Loaf
Wheat-free, soy-free, nut-free, dairy-free, egg-free
Serves 6 / This recipe omits eggs and replaces bread crumbs with high-protein quinoa. Cooking tip: You can divide the meat loaf mixture into two smaller loaf pans; after cooking, freeze one for later use. Serving tip: Pop some fork-pricked sweet potatoes in the oven about ten minutes after the meat loaf has started cooking, and you'll have a complete meal.

1 medium onion, quartered
2 carrots, each cut in 2 or 3 pieces
2 stalks celery, each cut in 2 or 3 pieces
1 handful spinach, washed
3/4 pound ground turkey breast
3/4 pound ground turkey thigh meat
1 cup cooked quinoa
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon ground sage
1 teaspoon sea salt
4 tablespoons organic ketchup, plus more for brushing

1. Combine onion, carrots, and celery in a food processor and pulse until roughly chopped (do not purée). Transfer to a large bowl.

2. Preheat oven to 375°. Place spinach in food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add to onion mixture. Add remaining ingredients to bowl and mix with your fingers. Form into a large loaf and transfer to a 9x5-inch loaf pan. Brush with additional ketchup. Bake for about 1 hour, until a meat thermometer reads 165°. Cool 5 minutes before slicing.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Calories: 215 calories
% fat calories: 24
Fat: 6g
Saturated Fat: 1g
Cholesterol: 62mg
Protein: 27g
Carbohydrate: 13g
Fiber: 4g
Sodium: 612mg

Hidden allergens
Soy sauce contains wheat. Some tamari is wheat free; check the label carefully.
Tuna may be packed in soybean oil; check labels.
Packaged meat replacements, such as meatless sausage, usually contain wheat.
The foam on fancy coffee drinks may include egg whites.

—K.C.

Brown Rice Pulao
Wheat-free, soy-free, nut-free, egg-free
Serves 8-10 / A popular Indian rice dish. Ingredient tip: Also known as hato mugi, Job's tears—a healthy, gluten-free grain—is available in some health food stores and Asian markets.

1 cup brown basmati rice
1 cup Job's tears, or 1 more cup brown rice
3 tablespoons ghee or avocado oil, or a mixture
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
10 whole cloves
5 cardamom pods
2 bay leaves
1 cinnamon stick
4 cups water
2 cups frozen vegetable medley (corn, carrots, peas), not thawed
1/4-1/2 cup raisins
Pinch of salt (optional)
Additional ghee (optional)

1. Wash rice and Job's tears in a strainer; set aside.

2. Heat ghee or oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add spices. Stir a few minutes, being careful not to burn spices. Add rice and Job's tears, and stir about 8 minutes.

3. Carefully add water to rice mix (it will pop and splash). Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook for 45-55 minutes.

4. Add frozen vegetables to rice and stir on medium-low heat. Stir in raisins and add a bit of salt and ghee, if desired. Remove large spices before serving.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Calories: 258 calories
% fat calories: 21
Fat: 6g
Saturated Fat: 3g
Cholesterol: 12mg
Protein: 5g
Carbohydrate: 47g
Fiber: 6g
Sodium: 21mg

Pink and Purple Quinoa
Wheat-free, soy-free, nut-free, dairy-free, egg-free
Serves 4 / A morning bowl of high-protein quinoa keeps me satisfied much longer than cold cereals or even oatmeal. Better still, my 5-year-old requests this for breakfast almost daily. Keep some plain, cooked quinoa in the refrigerator for other meal bases. Ingredient tips: People with milk challenges often can handle ghee (clarified butter) because it is basically free of casein, or milk protein. Hempseed, available at natural products stores, is an excellent source of protein and omega-3 essential fatty acids. It is best used uncooked, straight from the package, to retain the valuable—but delicate—omega-3s.

1 cup quinoa, well washed
2 cups water
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Dash of salt
3/4-1 cup fresh or frozen cherries or blueberries, or a combination
1 tablespoon ghee (optional)
4 tablespoons hempseed

1. Combine quinoa and water in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 12-15 minutes.

2. Remove from heat and stir in cinnamon, salt, and berries. Add ghee, if using, and sprinkle each serving with a tablespoon of hempseed.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Calories: 258 calories
% fat calories: 30
Fat: 9g
Saturated Fat: 1g
Cholesterol: 0mg
Protein: 10g
Carbohydrate: 35g
Fiber: 12g
Sodium: 12mg


Kelly Corbet regularly convinces family and friends to serve as recipe guinea pigs. When she's not mothering, cooking, or researching, she teaches others how to cook and get healthy at www.smartfoodshealthykids.com.