Dealing with Food Allergies as a Host

Dealing with Food Allergies as a Host

Alysha Findley
Nov 14, 2012

We are all familiar with the insane rise of food allergies in the past decade. From kids going into anaphylaxis from nuts to the gluten free craze (excluding people with an allergy or celiacs disease), knowing your guests' diets is as important as their RSVP. With all the restrictions these days, how do you go about keeping your guests safe?

Here are some tips to get started on having an allergen free party:

1. On the invite, ask guests to tell you of any food allergies you should be aware of. Don't forget to ask to what degree they are allergic. There is a big difference between someone needing to pull out an epi pen or simply having to stay away from a specific dish.

2. If anyone has a severe allergy, like kids with nuts, make sure you tell your other guests not to bring any dishes with that ingredient. It's best in this case to just completely rid the house of that food than to try to manage it. It's just not worth the risk.

3. If you have gluten-free guests and you're not familiar with cooking with this restriction, you can ask the guests for recipes and/or to make something for the party. There are lots of great resources on the internet that you can use for ideas.

4. Lastly, you want to label your dishes. Make cards that include the name of the meal and what it's free of. Although this is a bit extra work, it's a heck of a lot better than standing in front of the food table all night explaining everything over and over again.

Here's a list of the top allergens and dietary restrictions, plus abbreviations for each:

V = Vegetarian
VG = Vegan
NF = Nut Free
DF = Dairy Free
GF = Gluten Free
DyeF = Dye Free
SF = Soy Free
EF = Egg Free

You don't need to let allergies bring down your party. With a little precaution and extra preparation you can provide a fun, safe and delectable time for all your guests. Party on!

(Image: Allergy Riders Baking Cups)

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