Maple Sesame Salmon Bowls

This fast and easy dinner for two is made with simple, naturally gluten free ingredients.  One of the first meals I made after the New Year, it was a nice change of pace after all the holiday cooking.  The marinade gives the salmon just a hint of an Asian flair, pairing nicely with the jasmine rice, steamed broccoli and fresh mango.  Once you prep the ingredients, this meal comes together in 15 minutes!

Dinner for 2

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Whisk together the sesame oil, maple syrup and coconut aminos in a non-reactive baking dish.

Place the salmon skin side up in the marinade for 20-30 minutes while you prep the other ingredients.

Toast the sesame seeds in a dry pan and set aside for garnish.

Combine the rice, water and salt in a small saucepan and simmer covered for 15 minutes.  Peel and slice the mango.  Cut the broccoli into florets and steam for about 10 minutes or until crisp tender.

Cook the salmon for 10 minutes in a grill pan or skillet over medium heat.  Start the filets skin side up for the first 5 minutes.  To caramelize the sugars and get that nice crust, don’t move the salmon around in the pan.

As soon as you remove the salmon from the marinade, pour that marinade into a small sauce pan and simmer (important, to kill any bacteria you must bring it to a boil).

After 5 minutes turn the salmon and finish cooking 5 minutes longer.

To assemble the bowls, arrange the rice on one side, followed by the broccoli.  Add one salmon filet and finish out the bowl with mango slices.  Garnish it all with toasted sesame seeds and a drizzle of the marinade.

Notes ♪♫  Salmon is a heart healthy fish that is rich in protein and omega-3 fats.  It is widely available both fresh and in the freezer section.  I like to buy family packs of individually portioned fillets so that I can take out one or more at a time as needed.  For more ways to prepare salmon, check out my Oven Baked Salmon with Almonds and Pecans, or my Gluten Free Salmon Burgers.

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Gluten Free Chicken Broccoli Casserole

The thought of preparing gluten free meals from scratch can be overwhelming.  It took a while for me to realize that there were meals I had been making for years that were naturally gluten free.  From there, I started looking at other favorite recipes that only required a swap of one or two ingredients to be gluten free.  My repertoire began to grow and now I have added many of my old favorites back to the dinner rotation.

My Chicken Broccoli Casserole is a good example.  Here’s how to make it!

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  • 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast
  • Rice flour for dusting
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olive oil
  • White wine, divided use
  • ½ large sweet onion, diced
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1 large broccoli crown, chopped
  • 1 can (14.5 oz.) fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • ½ tsp. basil
  • ½ tsp. Italian seasoning
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 8 oz. gluten free penne
  • Cooking spray
  • gluten free seasoned breadcrumbs
  • Grated Parmesan cheese
  • Fresh Italian parsley for garnish


Preheat the oven to 350º.  Set up a pan of salted water for the pasta, and bring to a boil.

Cut the chicken breast into 1-1/2″ chunks.  Dust with rice flour and season with salt and pepper.  Begin browning the chicken in a little olive oil, about 3 minutes per side.  Don’t crowd the pan, use a large skillet or do it in 2 batches.

When the chicken has browned on all sides, add a splash (1/4 cup) of white wine to the pan and toss until the liquid evaporates.  Remove from the pan and set aside.

Wipe the skillet clean.  Add a little more olive oil and begin browning the onions.

When they have a little color, add the broccoli, garlic and diced tomatoes.  Add another splash of white wine, then season with salt and pepper, basil and Italian seasoning.  Cover and cook 10 minutes, until the broccoli is crisp tender.

While the vegetables are cooking, add the pasta to the boiling water.  Use your favorite (Jovial Brown Rice Penne is one of mine) and be sure to cook for 2 minutes less than the package instructions.  Drain and add to the skillet, along with the reserved chicken.  Toss well.

Mist a casserole dish with cooking spray and transfer contents from the skillet in an even layer.  Drizzle with olive oil, then top it off with breadcrumbs and grated cheese.  Bake for 30 minutes.

I like to finish it off under the broiler for a few minutes to crisp up the topping.  Remove from the oven, garnish with fresh parsley and serve.

This is a real family favorite.  I hadn’t made it in a very long time, but now with just a couple of adaptations we can all enjoy this comfort food meal again.

Notes ♪♫ Always check prepared ingredients for hidden gluten.  In this recipe, pasta and breadcrumbs must of course be gluten free.  Less obvious but important, use rice flour for coating and thickening, make sure canned tomatoes and seasoning mixes are gluten free.  I always grate my own cheese, but if you are using a pre-grated cheese always check for additives that may contain gluten.

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Gluten Free Asian Beef and Broccoli

Asian Beef and Broccoli is a restaurant favorite that can be made right at home with just a handful of ingredients.  Adapting the recipe to be gluten free was easy, so why haven’t I made it in a while?  The short answer, sodium.

These days our meals not only have to be gluten free, but also lower in sodium for my husband.  That means many of my Asian inspired meals have gone on the back burner.  With that in mind, I am on a mission this year to makeover some of my favorite gluten free recipes with less salt.  This was our first meal of the new year and I dare say it was a success.

Would you believe my original recipe used 1/4 cup of gluten free soy sauce and 1/4 cup of hoisin sauce?  That’s a lot of sodium!

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In this recipe remake, I’m using Coconut Aminos, a new condiment in my kitchen that is much lower in sodium than gluten free soy sauce or tamari.  I have substituted Coconut Aminos in many of my recipes that call for soy sauce.  And a little Hoisin Sauce goes a long way, I cut the original 1/4 cup down to 2 tbsp. and it was still delicious.

4 Servings


  • 1 lb. sirloin tips or petite sirloin (top sirloin), cubed
  • 1 tbsp. coconut aminos
  • 1 tsp. dark brown sugar
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced thin
  • 1-1/2 tsp. sesame oil, divided
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil, divided
  • 1/4 tsp. powdered ginger
  • 2 tsp. fresh chives
  • pinch red pepper flakes
  • 1 large broccoli crown (about 2 cups)
  • 2 tbsp. gluten free Hoisin sauce
  • 1 tsp. sesame seeds, toasted
  • rice or gluten free rice noodles for serving


Once you start cooking this dish comes together very quickly, so measure and prep all of the ingredients ahead of time.

For the marinade, whisk together 1 tbsp. coconut aminos, 1 tsp. brown sugar, the garlic slices, 1 tbsp. of olive oil, 1/2 tsp. of sesame oil, 1/4 tsp. powdered ginger, chives and pinch of red pepper flakes.

Cut the sirloin (uncooked) into 1″ cubes and add to the marinade.  Cover and let it stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Toast the sesame seeds in a dry skillet, watching closely that they don’t burn.  Set aside for garnish.

Next, cut the broccoli into uniform pieces.  Steam 5 minutes.  Remove the steamer basket from the heat and set aside while you finish the dish.

Add the remaining tbsp. olive oil and 1 tsp. sesame oil to the skillet and begin browning the beef.  Don’t crowd the pan, do it in 2 batches if needed.  Discard any marinade left in the bowl.

Stir in 2 tbsp. hoisin sauce.

Finally, add the broccoli to the skillet and toss with the beef.

Let it cook for another minute or so, then transfer to a platter.  Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and either toss with rice noodles or serve with rice.

Here I served with Annie Chun’s Pad Thai rice noodles.

Shown here, served with rice.

So, were you thinking of ordering takeout?  Try this instead, you will love it!

Notes ♪♫ Coconut Aminos contain about 1/10th the sodium of gluten free soy sauce.  If you aren’t worried about sodium, try a gluten free soy sauce or tamari.  I like San-J Tamari, which also comes in a lower sodium version that is completely gluten free.

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