Cooking Gluten Free

A few weeks ago, a lovely mom friend I met at Baby Boot Camp had her baby. It was inspirational to work out with her because there she was, sweating with the rest of us, but with her belly full of baby. Trainers and owners Melinda and Elizabeth sent out a Meal Train email to everyone so we could take her a meal. I remember how helpful it was (and how new I was to the concept at the time) when I was recovering from childbirth when friends came over with food. The last thing you want to think of as a new mom is what to feed yourself.

The mom’s meal train notes had the following dietary restrictions:

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I’ve never intentionally cooked gluten-free before, so I was particularly mindful when I shopped. I decided to make a pasta salad, inspired by this spinach-pasta salad recipe I found on Cooking Light. At Vons on Sepulveda in West LA, I found gluten-free pasta by Ancient Harvest. It’s also available on Amazon.

Here is my modified version of the recipe. I didn’t use any salt, even when boiling the pasta. Adjust dressing measurements to your taste, and add grilled chicken for a complete meal.

Gluten-Free Spinach, and Red Bell Pepper Pasta Salad


  • 1 8oz box of gluten-free pasta (Suggested: Ancient Harvest Supergrain Pasta® Rotelle)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon white rice vinegar (don’t get seasoned rice vinegar if you want to avoid salt)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 cups baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup chopped red pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion


  1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain. Rinse with cold water; drain.
  2. Combine olive oil and next 4 ingredients in a large bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Add garlic vinaigrette, spinach, and onion to pasta.