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gluten free chili

Gluten-free recipes for your march basketball party

by FIJI Water on April 4, 2017

With the college basketball finals beginning soon, you may be planning on hosting a party to watch the big games. As you know, hosting a game party requires you to provide food for the cheering fans. However, if your friends adhere to a gluten-free diet, it can make planning the menu more challenging. Score big this year with these quick tips on gluten-free recipes and drinks that will please the entire crowd!

Snacks & Appetizers

Fruit and Veggie Trays

Fruits and vegetables are naturally gluten-free according to The Celiac Disease Foundation as long as you choose fresh fruits and veggies that are unprocessed or have been processed appropriately. Make sure to double check the labels of any processed food to make sure they are gluten-free.

Get creative, and assemble a tray of fruits and vegetables matching those of your favorite team’s colors. It’s easier than it sounds! Fruits and veggies are available in dozens of bold, unique colors. Think: kiwis, blueberries, mangoes, snap peas, jicama, or cherry tomatoes.

fresh fruits and veggies on a tray

Big Bowls of Chips

While potato chips and corn tortilla chips should be naturally gluten-free, not all of them are, make sure to choose a brand that does not add ingredients containing gluten during processing. Look for the “gluten free” claim regulated by the FDA.

Sweet Potato Sliders

Sliders have long been a basketball party staple, and you can ensure that remains the case with a few tips from The Fit Foodie Mama. To make the sliders gluten-free serve them on baked sweet potato slices instead of traditional buns!


  • Instead of frying the sliders in a skillet, bake the small beef patties in a muffin tin for at least 10 minutes in a preheated, 450-degree oven.
  • Slice sweet potatoes into disks, then put the disks in a bowl and coat with one tablespoon coconut oil and one teaspoon Cajun seasoning. Place potato disks on lined baking sheet, baking for about 25 minutes in 450-degree oven, flipping halfway through.
  • Top with fresh lettuce leaves, sliced tomato, and avocado. Enjoy!

The Main Dish

Healthy Turkey Chili

Spicy turkey chili is a hearty addition to your March basketball party, and it’s easy to serve. Try out this healthy and delicious recipe from Monica at Ambitious Kitchen.

Main ingredients

  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 pound extra lean ground turkey or chicken (99%)
  • 4 tbsp. chili powder
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 1/4 cups chicken broth
  • 2 (15 oz) cans dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15 oz) can sweet corn, rinsed and drained

Optional topping ingredients

  • Cheese
  • Avocado
  • Corn chips
  • Cilantro

Place oil in a large pot and place over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic, and red pepper and saute for 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently. Next, add ground turkey and break up the meat; cooking until no longer pink. Next add in chili powder, cumin, oregano, cayenne pepper, and salt; stir for about 20 seconds.

Next add in tomatoes, chicken broth, kidney beans, and corn. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30-45 minutes or until chili thickens and flavors come together. Taste and adjust seasonings and salt as necessary. Garnish with any of the suggested toppings.

Makes 6 servings, about 1 1/2 cups each.

Sweet Treats

Fresh Fruit with Coconut Whipped Cream

Another great way to incorporate fresh fruit into your March basketball party spread is with a fruit and coconut whipped cream dessert. Choose your favorite berries or sliced fruit and top it with this Coconut Whipped Cream recipe from the Minimalist Baker:


  • 1 14-ounce can (414 ml) coconut cream or full-fat coconut milk
  • 1/4 - 3/4 cup (28 - 84g) icing/powdered sugar
  • Optional: 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Chill coconut cream or coconut milk in the refrigerator overnight, being sure not to shake or tip the can to encourage separation of the cream and liquid.

  2. The next day, chill a large mixing bowl 10 minutes before whipping.

  3. Remove the coconut cream or milk from the fridge without tipping or shaking and remove the lid. Scrape out the top, thickened cream and leave the liquid behind (reserve for use in smoothies).

  4. Note: If your coconut milk didn't harden, you probably just got a dud can without the right fat content. In that case, you can try to salvage it with a bit of tapioca flour - 1 to 4 Tbsp - during the whipping process.

  5. Place hardened cream in your chilled mixing bowl. Beat for 30 seconds with a mixer until creamy. Then add vanilla (optional) and powdered sugar and mix until creamy and smooth - about 1 minute. Taste and adjust sweetness as needed.

  6. Use immediately or refrigerate - it will harden and set in the fridge the longer it's chilled. Will keep for up to 1 - 2 weeks!

The Drink Menu

Water always works for any thirsty crowd, so make sure you have plenty of FIJI Water on hand. Stock up with ease and keep it coming automatically with a monthly subscription.

Many beers contain gluten, but most cider does not. Alcoholic and non-alcoholic ciders are typically made from apples, rather than barley, wheat or rye. Be sure double check the ingredients before you buy.

Hard Liquor
If you’re serving up hard liquor, rum, tequila, and potato vodka are gluten-free, according to the Gluten-Free Survivors Guide.

For a tasty, non-alcoholic drink option, serve a sparkling cherry spritzer to your guests, like this one from Amie Valpone at The Healthy Apple:


  • 2 Tbsp. honey
  • 2 tsp. freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 Tbsp. lime zest, plus more for garnish
  • 4 fresh mint or basil leaves
  • 2 cups fresh cherries, pitted
  • 1 tsp. chia seeds
  • 2 cups sparkling water or seltzer


  1. Juice cherries using a juicer or a blender into a large glass.

  2. Strain through a sieve, pushing juice through with a spatula. Discard cherry solids.

  3. Pour cherry juice into a large pitcher. Add remaining ingredients; mix well to combine.

  4. Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving

  5. 5. Serve chilled with additional lime zest, if desired.

Hosting a gluten-free March basketball party just takes a bit of creativity! These quick tips can help ensure your entire crowd cheers as enthusiastically for your food and drinks as they do for the games.

We remind anyone eating a gluten-free diet due to a health condition to consult their personal doctor for diet restrictions and recommendations. This article is not meant to treat or prevent any medical condition, but to offer guidance on gluten-free meal planning.