When I was a kid, I had over a dozen food allergies. This was back in the day when food allergies weren't commonly diagnosed, and NOBODY made allergy-friendly pre-packaged foods. Just about everything had to be made from scratch for me.

Not everything needs to be homemade when you're lactose or gluten-intolerant. Here are allergy friendly foods that you can buy at the grocery store.

Nowadays, allergies are more accepted. Entire companies exist to make allergy-friendly foods, and many established manufacturers try to use allergy-friendly options when they can. Knowing what a challenge it can be to feed your family with these limitations in place, I'm sharing my four favorite allergy-friendly pre-packaged foods that can help replace traditional standbys and make mealtime a bit faster for busy families.

Allergy-Friendly Food That Doesn't Have to be Cooked from Scratch

allergy-friendly macaroni

  • Ian's Natural Foods holds a special place in my heart for creating the only macaroni I can eat that doesn't require me to roll out special pasta flour, whip up sauce made from nuts, mix in some coconut milk and stand on my head praying it all works out. They make a ton of snack foods such as fish sticks, chicken nuggets and pizza that tastes delicious and are free of top allergens including wheat and gluten, milk and casein, eggs, nuts and soy. They do use canola oil, but many of their products are made with certified GMO-free ingredients. I pick them up at Albertsons, Ralphs or Whole Foods.

toddler holding kabrita

  • Kabrita has FINALLY come on the market with a snack pouch and formula option for little ones who can't tolerate cow's milk (Sidekick has had ongoing issues with dairy sensitivity and loves the goat milk-based pouches as his own treat when Some Boy chows down on yogurt). I'm happy that my toddler has found a solution that works for his intolerance (note that he doesn't have a true dairy allergy, which only impacts about 2-3% of children under the age of six and is a more severe issue that requires complete avoidance of any milk proteins). I'm thrilled to see a natural formula that's free of cow's milk, soy proteins and GMOs. They're sold online at Kabrita-USA.com.

allergy-friendly gourmet meal

  • Cuisine Solutions has me covered for allergy-friendly grown-up mealtime in a flash. Their sous-vide cooking method makes delectable prepared meals that are often made without gluten, eggs or dairy (I check each label individually based on who will be eating each meal). The beef short ribs are divine. They're available online or at Costco or Sam's Club.

allergy friendly ice cream

  • Arctic Zero is my hero, with ice cream and ice cream bars that are GMO free, low glycemic and lactose intolerant friendly. I am utterly addicted to the 85 calorie chocolate-dipped vanilla bars. They're conveniently sold at Sprouts, Albertsons, Fresh & Easy, Ralphs, Vons and more.

What are your favorite allergy-friendly pre-made foods?