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Dairy-free snacks for my little Goldfish lover

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gimlis1mum Jul 1, 2013 07:10 PM

Not too long ago, we found out that my four-year-old has a milk allergy. Problem is he remembers eating things like Goldfish crackers, Cheese-Its, etc. - and remembers that he really likes them. He misses them. Another problem is that his daycare keeps putting Goldfish, Cheese-its, Pirate's Booty and the like on their snack rotation. The little man is quite sad that he can't have them (and has been known to sneak a few when he thinks no one's looking...).

I've been looking for dairly-free substitutes of these classic kid snacks. Today I found Earth Balance brand's vegan versions of Pirate's Booty and Cheese popcorn at Whole Foods; woohoo! We tried the knockoff Booty and it's pretty good. I'm still stumped for a Goldfish substitute though. There used to be one (forget the name; I found it online) but they've stopped production. I know, I could make them from scratch, there are several recipes out there but part of the appeal for the four-year-old is that the crackers come out of a package. (Also I just don't have the patience to stamp out and bake goldfish right now). Has anyone seen vegan cheddar crackers anywhere? Preferably in cute little animal shapes?

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  1. C. Hamster Jul 1, 2013 07:33 PM

    I'd suggest also posting this on the special diets board

    1 Reply
    1. re: C. Hamster
      g
      gimlis1mum Jul 2, 2013 05:10 PM

      I will, thanks. I've looked a lot online and not found much, so I was sort of hoping there was an artisinal vegan cheese cracker maker lurking somewhere at a farmers market...

    2. Science Chick Jul 2, 2013 01:21 PM

      How about these?
      http://www.godairyfree.org/product-re...

      3 Replies
      1. re: Science Chick
        pinehurst Jul 2, 2013 01:32 PM

        +1 to the Eco...They are surprisingly good.
        Also, TJ's has lots of vegan kid-friendly treats. Maybe suggest that the daycare put some of their vegan animal crackers into rotation? Or other options?

        1. re: pinehurst
          g
          gimlis1mum Jul 2, 2013 05:13 PM

          Part of the problem too is that other kids bring these items in their lunches/snack, so even if it's not on the daycare's menu it's always around.

          I'll take another look at TJ's, thanks.

        2. re: Science Chick
          g
          gimlis1mum Jul 2, 2013 05:09 PM

          That's the one that's been discontinued :-( I emailed to ask them if they distributed in the Boston area & they said that they'd lost their manufacturer & were having trouble finding a new one.

        3. j
          jbsiegel Jul 2, 2013 05:14 PM

          What about the pretzel Goldfish? I don't know if they are dairy free or not, and I know they're not cheesy, but at least they are Goldfish shape...

          2 Replies
          1. re: jbsiegel
            maillard Jul 2, 2013 05:17 PM

            Or original Goldfish. Those are my favorite. They taste like celery salt, yum!

            1. re: jbsiegel
              g
              gimlis1mum Jul 2, 2013 06:32 PM

              Sadly, even the pretzel Goldfish have milk protein in them.

            2. f
              foodieX2 Jul 2, 2013 05:29 PM

              First of all I would talk to your son's dietician/nutritionist. They are a HUGE reference for kids will allergies as companies are often tinkering with ingredients so one day a food could be fine and the next it's not.

              Some else posted pretzel goldfish which is the first thing that came to mind. As of today they still have a trace amount of non fat dried milk but again his doc can tell you if this amount is OK
              <MADE WITH SMILES AND WHOLE WHEAT FLOUR, UNBLEACHED ENRICHED WHEAT FLOUR (FLOUR, NIACIN, REDUCED IRON, THIAMINE MONONITRATE [VITAMIN B1], RIBOFLAVIN [VITAMIN B2], FOLIC ACID), VEGETABLE OILS (CANOLA, SUNFLOWER AND/OR SOYBEAN), CONTAINS 2 PERCENT OR LESS OF: SALT, BAKING POWDER (SODIUM ACID PYROPHOSPHATE, BAKING SODA, CORNSTARCH, MONOCALCIUM PHOSPHATE), MALTED BARLEY FLOUR, ENZYMES, NONFAT DRY MILK*. *ADDS A TRIVIAL AMOUNT OF CHOLESTEROL.>>

              then there are Annies classic Bunny crackers, they are dairy free
              <<MADE WITH ONLY THE BEST INGREDIENTS: ORGANIC WHEAT FLOUR, ORGANIC EXPELLER-PRESSED VEGETABLE OIL (SAFFLOWER AND/OR SUNFLOWER), ORGANIC EVAPORATED CANE JUICE, SALT, YEAST EXTRACT, ORGANIC MALT SYRUP, YEAST, ORGANIC NATURAL BUTTER FLAVOR, BAKING SODA, ANNATTO EXTRACT FOR NATURAL COLOR.>>

              And Annies "saltines" (cute heart shapes)
              <<MADE WITH ONLY THE BEST INGREDIENTS: ORGANIC WHEAT FLOUR, ORGANIC EXPELLER-PRESSED VEGETABLE OIL (SAFFLOWER AND/OR SUNFLOWER), ORGANIC EVAPORATED CANE JUICE, SALT, YEAST EXTRACT, ORGANIC MALT SYRUP, YEAST, ORGANIC NATURAL BUTTER FLAVOR, BAKING SODA, ANNATTO EXTRACT FOR NATURAL COLOR.>>

              2 Replies
              1. re: foodieX2
                g
                gimlis1mum Jul 2, 2013 06:36 PM

                Hmmm I'd checked the label on the wheat bunnies and thought there was milk protein. I'll look again - not sure about the natural butter flavor.

                I haven't seen the Annie's saltines at Whole Foods, do you know of a store that carries them?

                We know from experience, trace amounts of milk proteins are not OK (though he's alright with "made on shared equipment that processes milk").

                Thanks!

                1. re: gimlis1mum
                  f
                  foodieX2 Jul 3, 2013 05:42 AM

                  Our WF has the Annie Saltines and so does the "organic/health food" section of our local Stop and Shop or least both have in the past. My son is now 11 and he rolls his eyes at bunnies and hearts, LOL!

                  You could try the store locator on their site:
                  http://www.annies.com/our-products/st...

                  You can also order directly from them or from Amazon but you have to buy quite bit to get free shipping so not sure that would be cost effective.

              2. c
                cheesehead in recovery Jul 2, 2013 06:34 PM

                Any cracker that is "Parve" or has a Kosher symbol for Parve would fit the bill..but its really hard to find fake Cheese flavors...Parve is dairy free.

                1. i
                  Isolda Jul 3, 2013 06:06 AM

                  If you want to fake a cheese flavor at home, nutritional yeast isn't too bad, as it adds a bit of tang. It won't fool anyone, though.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Isolda
                    Science Chick Jul 3, 2013 07:46 AM

                    Yup, pretty sure the Eco brand vegan "cheddar" cracker uses nutritional yeast as the main flavor note

                    1. re: Science Chick
                      f
                      foodieX2 Jul 3, 2013 07:57 AM

                      Its pretty good on popcorn too!

                  2. d
                    dtremit Jul 5, 2013 05:50 PM

                    Does he like (and can he eat) peanut butter? These peanut butter sandwich crackers from Late July appear to be vegan, and are a fun size:

                    http://www.latejuly.com/late_july_organic_snacks/2008/01/our-bite-size-c.html

                    In the pretzel direction, Utz makes plane-shaped pretzels

                    http://www.utzsnacks.com/store/p-827-sacks-of-disneys-planes-shaped-pretzels.aspx

                    as well as Phineas and Ferb shaped pretzels:

                    http://www.utzsnacks.com/store/p-671-...

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: dtremit
                      g
                      gimlis1mum Jul 5, 2013 05:55 PM

                      Hmmm he could have the peanut butter crackers at home, but not at daycare (they're nut-free). I'll try the pretzels. Thanks!

                    2. g
                      gimlis1mum Nov 19, 2013 10:10 AM

                      Bumping this because I found a product at the Chelsea Market Basket this am that just might work! Funley's Cornbread crackers. Small, yellow, hexagonal crackers stamped with a few different designs, mostly faces. To be honest, the faces are a little creepy...but I'm willing to overlook that in something that might possibly satisfy my child's pining for cheese-its.

                      1. g
                        grant.cook Nov 19, 2013 10:24 AM

                        No answer to your goldfish issue, but there a bakery in East Arlington - Something Sweet without Wheat that does a lot of dairy free items.

                        1. l
                          Ladycale Nov 19, 2013 11:11 AM

                          I have not tried these, but I've been told that the "Original Tings" by Pirate brands taste like cheetos and are vegan. Not sure where to find them in the area but I know you can get them online.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: Ladycale
                            g
                            gimlis1mum Nov 19, 2013 02:33 PM

                            I think I've bought them at Market Basket; Whole Foods for sure. DS likes them and think they taste pretty good too :-)

                          2. p
                            poundcake Nov 19, 2013 01:52 PM

                            We have a similar issue at our house. Market Basket has some plain salted corn puffs that worked for us.They're their own brand. They're like Pirate's Booty without the cheese.

                            On the not-at-all-wholesome end of the spectrum, I read that spicy sweet chili doritos are vegan.

                            I'll look for the Funley's cornbread crackers. Are they in the regular cracker section?

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: poundcake
                              g
                              gimlis1mum Nov 19, 2013 02:38 PM

                              Thanks for the tip about the corn puffs, I'll look for them. Probably cheaper than the Earth Balance vegan booty. And I'll look into the Doritos, too - my non-milk-allergy kid has been begging for them as a treat but I was afraid he'd feed them to his little brother...

                              Yes, the Funley's were in with the rest of the crackers. Right next to the Back-To-Nature brand stuff, which I also like.

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