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Most people gasp when they hear I’m not a huge fan of bread, and I get it—there are so many classic recipes where bread is a natural go–to! 

I’ve toyed around with gluten–free alternatives ever since my sister was diagnosed with a gluten allergy, and I’ve found that I feel so much better when I avoid bread products as much as I can. Bread can feel heavy and can get quite boring after a while. 

There’s such a wide variety of grains out there, and some great ways to try each. Some still think I’m crazy, but try these reimagined classics and see for yourself! 

Go To: Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

How to Switch It Up: Cheese Quesadillas

Grilled cheese is that classic go–to comfort food. Something I think many of us can agree on, though, is that the best part is the ooey gooey cheese in the center. In that case, you don’t even need the bread! So instead… grab some tortillas and make yourself a dang quesadilla! (Bonus points for that movie reference.) 

As a kid, I never wanted to eat sandwiches for lunch, so quesadillas were a natural alternative. All you need is cheese and a corn tortilla and it’s ready to be dipped into tomato soup. 

What’s great about this recipe, though, is that there’s so much room to add to it. If you add some pizza sauce and pepperoni, you have a pizza quesadilla! Have leftover rice or meat? Throw that in too!

Go To: Avocado Toast

How to Switch It Up: Rice Cakes

Avocado toast has been all over social media these days, and it’s understandable why! You can’t go wrong with some smashed avocado, and it’s even better dressed up with tomatoes, maybe an egg, and, of course, everything bagel seasoning. 

Turns out, you can still enjoy all of that, but ditch the toast for rice cakes instead! Rice cakes are so underrated, and they come in so many flavors, making them incredibly versatile. You still get a crunch similar to toast, but it requires no cooking whatsoever! 

I usually go with savory, lightly salted rice cakes for avocado toast. However, there are many sweet options you can sub in for a dessert toast with peanut butter or cream cheese and fruit!

Go To: Hamburger Buns

How to Switch It Up: Hear me out on this one: anything can stand in for a hamburger bun if you’re brave enough!

This is probably the switch most people find the hardest, since the bun is really an all–around vessel to carry the rest of the toppings. Rest assured, though: it’s possible to find a substitute. While I’m a fan of the lettuce leaf wrap, it’s easy to make it more fun. For example, having a brunch burger? Use hash browns as the bun instead! At a classic barbeque, use potato chips in the same way!

Go To: Mini Pizzas

How to Switch It Up: Just cheese pizza!

I saw this recipe on pinterest, and it’s been a go–to snack ever since. Mix parmesan, mozzarella—really any kind of cheese you want—with one egg and pizza–flavored herbs and spices (oregano, thyme, basil, etc.), and of course any topping you’d put on a pizza. Pop it in the oven on a baking sheet with parchment paper, and bake until it becomes golden and forms a crust. 

I’ve tried cauliflower crusts, too, but cheese is the superior option any day. Note: this recipe is also technically keto–friendly! 

Go To: Croutons

How to Switch It Up: Parmesan Crisps

One of the best parts of a salad is that crunchy topping—usually a crouton. If you’re like me and have been seeing bags of parmesan snack crisps everywhere, do yourself a favor and add them to your next caesar salad. Or go one step further, and make your own: it’s super easy to bake shredded parmesan in the bottom of a muffin pan until crisp. 

While bread certainly has its moments, I’m taking the bold stance here and saying it’s boring. It’s important to note that you don’t even have to be gluten–free to switch out the bread once in a while! I may not have dietary restrictions myself, but it’s always fun to try new recipes, and these have been some of my favorites for a while now.

You might not want to say goodbye to bread for good, but I hope you at least enjoy trying some of these fun alternatives!

Sienna is a sophomore studying Neuroscience, hoping to also minor in Nutrition and Psychology. She grew up in Philly, so she knows how to have fun in the city, but is just as happy outside- if you're down for a road trip she's your go-to! There isn't much she won't try once, and can't wait to be able to travel to the next new place to meet new people and of course try more food! Sienna wants to study veterinary medicine, and used to foster several working dogs who are now certified narcotic detection dogs! She naturally is a big animal lover, but has a soft spot for kids too, as she tutors local West Philly kids through a tutoring club at UPenn.
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