Ready to simply and organize your Grain-Free Lifestyle? Here are the 9 essential steps to avoiding grains in 2024!


Are you overwhelmed by the thought of a Grain-Free Lifestyle? I certainly was in 2012. When my doctor told me I had a grain allergy, I stared at him in disbelief. “But what will I eat?” I was a deer in headlights. No one gave me a plan…I was terrified.

And that’s what I’m giving you…a plan to embrace the Grain-Free Lifestyle and make it work for you!

  1. Set A Longterm Goal That Will Make A Difference In Your Life
  2. Set A Short-term Goal that you can achieve quickly
  3. Identify Simple Swaps For The Foods You Can’t Live Without
  4. Keep Your Baking Ingredients Simple
  5. Get Support With Achieving Your Goals
  6. Don’t Sacrifice
  7. Have A Safety / Backup Plan For When You Are Accidentally Exposed To Grains
  8. Be Gentle With Yourself
  9. Have Fun With Your New Lifestyle

How do I know these steps work? They’re the ones I follow myself and the steps I use to help my clients add flavor and variety back to their Grain-Free Lifestyle!

Welcome To Break A Recipe

Nina Blake, The Grain-Free lifestyle coach with her homemade cheeseburger casserole.

My name is Nina Blake, I’m The Grain-Free Lifestyle Coach!

If this is your first time visiting, thank you for stopping by! If you are a returning reader, Grain-Free VIP, newsletter subscriber, or Facebook group member, thank you for all your help! You keep me on my toes. You inspire me to Break New Recipes each week.

Life is better with foodie friends, and I’m thankful to call you mine!

How did I get here?

I’ve been cooking and baking without Grain, Dairy, Egg, Soy, Corn, Almond, Cashew, and other food since 2012.

Whenever I introduce my allergies, I get asked, What’s left to cook with?

I always tell them my secret ingredient is Unicorn Farts!

After we finish laughing, I explain that I use simple ingredients like chickpea, coconut, and tapioca, to create the appearance, flavor, and texture of the foods I’m craving.

It’s My Mission To Help You Simplify & Organize

Your Grain-Free Lifestyle!

I remember how much I struggled when I was new to the Grain-Free Lifestyle in 2012. I also remember how wonderful it was to have Grain-Free cookies that Christmas. Those cookies made me feel normal.

To help you simplify and organize your Grain—Free Lifestyle, I’d like to give you a copy of my cookbook 7 Simple Grain-Free Recipes.

Grain-Free cookbook

Inside you’ll find recipes for fast mac’n cheese, pizza, brownies, and chocolate chip cookies that get rave reviews! While the recipes are simple, they give you the feeling that you aren’t missing out. They’re some of my favorite recipes for sharing.

Ready To Embrace A

Grain-Free Lifestyle In 2024?

When my grain allergy was diagnosed in 2012, I feel like a deer in head lights! It was as though every food I ever enjoyed was suddenly off limits!

My head was spinning with questions like:

  • What are grains?
  • How many foods are made with grains?
  • What foods aren’t made with grains?
  • Which foods can I eat?
  • What should I avoid?
  • How will my body respond if I mistakenly eat a grain?
  • How long will the effects last?

Does this sound familiar? If it does, the you’re in the right place!

What Are The 9 Steps To A Grain-Free Lifestyle?

  1. Set A Longterm Goal That Will Make A Difference In Your Life
  2. Set A Short-term Goal that you can achieve quickly
  3. Identify Simple Swaps For The Foods You Can’t Live Without
  4. Keep Your Grain-Free Baking Ingredients Simple
  5. Get Support With Achieving Your Goals
  6. Don’t Sacrifice
  7. Have A Safety / Backup Plan For When You Are Accidentally Exposed To Grains
  8. Be Gentle With Yourself
  9. Have Fun With Your New Lifestyle

This will be your dream goal! Imagine that vision of yourself that you want to be when you ring in the next new year. Some sample goal for a Grain-Free Lifestyle might be

  • I want to eliminate all grains from my diet.
  • I want to make my home Grain-Free
  • I want to go to any restaurant and enjoy a Grain-Free Meal.

These are all amazing goals which would make a difference in your life. You’ll be healthier, smarter, and more organized when you achieve them. But how will you get there?

In the next step you’ll break down your long term goals into manageable bites that you can tackle in short periods of time!

Achieving the Grain-Free Lifestyle of your dreams can happen! Break that long term goal down into short ones. The important thing is that your short term goal is a small step that gets you closer to your big dream.

When I first started, I set goals two weeks at a time. Some of the first short term goals I achieved were:

  • I will eliminate all wheat from my diet within two weeks.
  • I will eliminate all rice from diet within two weeks.
  • I will eliminate all corn from my diet within two weeks.
  • I will eliminate all other grains from my diet within two weeks.
  • I will organize a Grain-Free snack cupboard, so that when I’m hungry I know I can grab a safe snack.

I worked on each of these goals one at a time. I didn’t make every deadline. Sometimes it took six weeks to achieve a goal that I thought I could achieve in two. When you set a goal, the important thing is to commit to it for a short period, and reflect on it when the time period is over.

When you have achieved the goal, celebrate your achievement! It you didn’t achieve the goal, ask yourself why? Before you try again, revise your approach.

One common misconception about goal setting is that small goals aren’t worth the effort. The truth is that setting small short-term goals builds motivation and makes the long-term goal you set in step one much more achievable!

When I coach my Grain-Free VIPs through this process, we start with the smallest goals. In just a few short months, they are avoiding grains completely! They’re able to do this because they’ve done it all in small manageable steps!

When I asked my doctor’s help with avoiding grains, he was straight forward.

“Just eat meat and vegetables and you’ll be fine, have some potatoes when you want a starchy side”

A life of meat, veggies, and potatoes may be satisfying to some, but it wasn’t satisfying to me. I needed substitutes for the foods my Italian-American diet was built around. I needed breads, pastas, and sweets that were made without grains and the other allergens I avoid.

Thankfully, it’s not 2012 any more. And the world is filled with Grain-Free pastas, crackers, snack bars, and recipes for the foods we’re craving!

If you’re just starting out, I’d like to share my blogpost on

Stocking Your Grain-Free Pantry with you.

You’ll find simple swaps for bone broth, breads, cereals, crackers, and pastas there. By identifying safe swaps for your favorite foods, you’ll be less likely to accidentally expose yourself to grains!

Simplicity is key! When I first started, I had 17 different flours in my pantry and I still didn’t have the ingredients I needed to bake the recipe I wanted to try! I wasted so much money and time with trying recipes which called for substitutions. If you’ve ever tried to adapt a Gluten-Free Bread Recipe to your individual dietary needs, you know what I’m talking about!

After much trial and error, I was able to identify simple ingredients that I could use in all my baking! I save space, I save time, and I don’t waste ingredients!

Each time you use a different ingredient there’s a learning curve—knowing the flavor, texture, and appearance it will contribute to your recipe is essential. Learning how it interacts with other ingredients can be mind boggling…

What do I mean? Once I tried to replace almond butter with sun butter in a cookie recipe. Sounds simple right? No! It’s not simple at all, sunflower and baking soda react to produce a green color within 24 hours of baking! I thought my tasty recipe developed a green fungus!

Would you believe I use the same 9 ingredients in almost all my baking? Really! I keep it simple so I can have brownies, cookies, cakes, pies, with the same simple ingredients! To read more about the 9 Simple Ingredients I use in my baking, click here.

Transitioning to a Grain-Free Lifestyle is a major shift! Finding support from a friend, family member, or group of like minded individuals makes all the difference!

On my very first Grain-Free Christmas, I remember how sad I was thinking that I wouldn’t be able to have any cookies. It was barely two months after my allergies were diagnosed…and I was devastated by the thought of missing out on my favorite foods on Christmas! My aunt made me cookies that year. She searched through every cookbook she had until she found a recipe!

Everyone deserves support as they transition to a Grain-Free Lifestyle. The Grain-Free VIPs in my coaching groups have a great time connecting each month. They give each other recipe ideas, and share Grain-Free Lifestyle tips. It’s a pleasure to support them on their Grain-Free journey!

I’d love to have you join us for coaching. Use the button below so we can connect and talk about how I can support you on your Grain-Free journey!

Really, I mean it! Avoiding grains is hard enough. Instead of focusing on all the foods you can’t have, focus on what you can enjoy! What do I mean?

While gatherings and get togethers are often focused around food, they don’t have to be. Shifting your focus away from food when you spend time with family and friends goes a long way. Exercising, attending an outdoor event, or playing a game are just a couple of things you can do that aren’t completely food focused!

Flip the script: make a list of all the foods you don’t have to eat any more—I never liked green bean casserole, but I always ate it to be polite. Instead of thinking about what I can’t have, I’m thankful to avoid the green bean casserole!

Explore a new recipe! One recipe at a time, you’ll build your menu and identify safe foods that you enjoy. Exploring one new recipe each week will leave you with 52 new options at the end of the year!

The photos above show you some delicious and simple recipes that you can add to your menu in a short amount of time. You can find all of these recipes in my VIP Recipe Box on Patreon. Use the button below to unlock them now!

Focus on adding the foods you miss most to your menu. I needed desserts immediately, but not everyone does. Some people focus on breakfast foods because they want to be excited to get out of bed and have a delicious safe meal each morning.

If you truly feel as though there is nothing you can enjoy, this is where the supportive community comes in. A supportive friend or family member can remind of you of all the things you can have and maybe even help you find some new ones.

If you feel like you don’t have anyone to help you through this, I’d like to help you. It’s my mission to help you add flavor and variety to your menu. You don’t have to do this alone.

Grains hide everywhere! They’re in our foods, our personal care products, cleaning products, skincare, and even medications! Exposure to grains is always possible.

Here are just a few examples of times when I have been exposed to grains:

  • My doctor prescribed a supplement containing rice flour and I didn’t check the label!
  • I cleaned with white vinegar which is made from grains!
  • My favorite cold cut brand changed the ingredients in the deli meat. They switched from using water to broth…which can often contain corn!
  • A friend gave me a sugar-free mint and I didn’t read the label before I ate.
  • I applied sunscreen to a friend’s back at the beach.
  • I bought a new haircare product containing alcohol made from grains.

In each of these occurrences, I was stuck with the nasty effects that grains have on my body: inflammation, fatigue, digestive discomfort, low mood, joint pain, and more.

When you are exposed to grains, following the advice of your doctor or health care provider is essential. Seek emergency support when necessary.

Knowing how your body responds to grains can help you recover quickly. When we’re exposed to a toxin, our body tries to eliminate it. Drinking extra water, and taking supplements or medications which your healthcare provider recommends can help you recover as quickly as possible.

The important thing is to know what your body is doing and to have a plan for when it happens. Also, communicating that plan to others is important. You’ll want others to know how to help you before you’re ever in that situation.

In addition to increasing my water intake, I get hungry…my body is over producing insulin to try and digest the proteins it cannot process. In response to this extra insulin in my blood, I eat extra protein to help stabilize my blood sugar and avoid crashing. I also make sure to get extra rest as my body recovers.

I do take medications when necessary, depending on the reaction I’m having.

My husband knows me quite well and I can count on him to help me through any reactions. Friends know I avoid grains, if I’m exposed sometimes we cancel plans, other times we do something chill at a slower pace. My boss and my officemate are aware of my safety plan should I ever need it at work.

It’s perfectly normal to feel upset when you’re exposed to grains. We feel awful! We’re dealing with bloating, brain-fog, digestive discomfort, inflammation, hives, join pain, mood swings, and more!

The effects the grains have on your body are enough to deal with. Being hard on yourself isn’t going to make it better.

You’re doing so much to avoid grains and eliminate them from your diet. You may feel that you could have avoid the exposure, but no one is perfect. No one reads every label. I cannot tell you how many times a grain has snuck into a product I’ve been using, when suddenly the manufacturer changed the formula and now I’m reacting to it. It happens, we learn and we do better.

Try showing yourself the same kindness you’d show a friend, family member, or your own child if they were in your situation.

Blame won’t help you recover any faster. When you’re recovered, you can problem solve how the exposure happened and make a plan to prevent it from reoccurring.

If you need help problem solving or label reading, I’m glad to help you. Use the link below to schedule a complimentary consult call.

The Grain-Free Lifestyle is filled with opportunities! At first you might feel like you’re missing out. However, in time you’ll find you’re feeling better, you have more energy, and you may even be thinking more clearly! My clients tell me that thinking clearly is their favorite benefit of the Grain-Free Lifestyle!

With grain based foods off of the menu–you have an opportunity to fill your plate with new flavors! Exploring new flavors is an unexpected benefit of the Grain-Free Lifestyle!

If you haven’t joined us yet, come and make some new Foodie Friends on Facebook in Grain-Free Lifestyle and Support Community!

As you learn more about Grain-Free Ingredients, you’ll be able to try new recipes. You’ll add to your network of supportive people and you’ll even have your favorite spots for Grain-Free dining!

A Slice Of The Grain-Free Lifestyle

I don’t miss out any more, and you don’t have to either! My lifestyle has changed a lot since my food allergies first became a part of my life in 2012. I have more energy, I’ve lost weight, I can build muscle when I exercise. My Grain-Free Lifestyle is packed with flavor and variety!

I avoid grains on a daily basis. My friends and family know I can’t eat just any old foods. When we get together, we go somewhere that I can enjoy. I often order a salad with some grilled chicken, shrimp, or salmon, and bring my homemade creamy garlic dressing. I also bring a dessert I can enjoy safely.

I bring my own food a lot, and I always share! The more I share, the more others are willing to try. There’s no longer a stigma attached to the way I eat. When I offer to share something, people are excited because they know they’ll get to try something new and amazing!

Recently, I shared Iced Lemonade Cookies and Cucumber Sandwiches with a large gathering of crafters. The sandwiches were perfect for the tea party we hosted; and the iced lemonade cookies tasted like summer. They were hit!

My crafting friends are a huge part of my support system! Many of the ladies in attendance avoid grains and allergens as well. It’s a joy to share treats they can eat safely so that no one has to miss out!

If you’d like to add some of these amazing recipes to your menu, unlock my VIP Recipe Box with all my Exclusive Recipes using the link below!

Let’s Connect!

It’s my mission to help you pack your Grain-Free Lifestyle with flavor and variety! Breaking Recipes, teaching cooking classes and helping Grain-Free VIPs simplify and organize their Grain-Free Lifestyle is my passion!

My Grain-Free VIPs learn to Break Their Family Recipes so that they can once again enjoy them without grains and other allergens!

I’m always impressed with how my VIPs break their favorite family recipes so that they can enjoy them safely!

If you’re ready to add flavor and variety back to your table, use the link below so that we can connect. There is no cost to this call. I’m committed to supporting you on your Grain-Free Journey.

You can save time, money, and become confident Grain-Free Cook in no time!

Thank you again for reading this blog post. I look forward to connecting with you soon.

You can also find me on Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest using the links below. I really enjoy your feedback and comments. I can’t wait to hear how your recipe turned out!

Come connect with others who cook without grains. Life’s better with Foodie Friends. We’d love to have you join us in Grain-Free Lifestyle And Support Community.

Wishing You Safe & Delicious Foods,

❤️ Nina Blake, The Grain-Free Lifestyle Coach