Can Prom be Easily Gluten-Free?

by | G+ Amy Leger

Well normally I wouldn’t post something on prom – not yet anyway. I figured it would be a few years before I experienced it as a parent. But with Ida our exchange student here, suddenly I’m thrust into prom-land — which is filled with dress talk, choices and alterations. When the main thing I’m worried about is that prom dinner! Where is it? Catered at school, out to a restaurant, or something else?  If you’re in the same boat — the clock is ticking and it’s time for parents to get planning.

Catered at School

I don’t know if they do this anymore, but this happened when I was going to prom – ahem…20 years ago. This one might be the trickiest one of all. First of all, as a parent you need to nail down who the caterer is. Easier said than done? Maybe. I can’t even find a page on Ida’s high school’s website regarding prom plans.

But either way, you should call the office and find out who’s coordinating the event and get the contact information for the caterer. I bet you could arrange it so your celiac child would hardly have to do anything that evening except enjoy the night.

Eating out

Depending on where you go, this could be easier than dealing with a caterer. Many high-end restaurants can cater to the gluten-free diet without a problem. Your teenager should speak up and give their date and other friends a variety of choices of restaurants, based on where he or she can eat. If it is a restaurant you haven’t dealt with before, call them and talk about possible options for your gluten-free child.

There are several helpful lists online as well: celiac handbook, glutenfreeonthego, glutenfreeregistry, can all help you as well.

The other Gluten-Free Eating option….a group dinner at a friend’s house

I think I have it good – because Ida will be going to prom with a huge group of kids – two limos and a massive cook-out at one person’s house before they head to prom. It appears they’ll be eating burgers and brats. I will find out more from the parents about the kinds of brats they choose and what, if anything, they will be adding to the burgers.

If your child will be doing something like this – I recommend always having aluminum foil. It is your friend at the neighborhood barbecue. Plop the gluten-free meat, kabob, ribs, whatever you’re cooking on the foil, put it on the grill and cook away.We don’t do this at home because our grill is gluten-free. But most people put seasonings and sauces on their foods when they’re grilling.  And you, and they for that matter, likely have no idea whether the sauces and spices they use are gluten-free.  So if you’re a guest, it’s always best to have the foil on hand.

In our case I believe the kids will be bringing items to share, we can find chips, pickles, condiments, fruit — that’s a piece of cake…wait. Maybe that’s what Ida should share…cake! HMMM Gotta start thinking about that one.

Hopefully these suggestions will help you, the parent, get ready for the big day. You can worry about the food — let her worry about the dress. FYI, back here the final decision on the dress has been made — color is purple, full length – and yes it will need just a few alterations….

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