I Can’t Eat That! Promoting National Food Allergy Awareness Week

The week of May 14th-20th marks the 20th Food Allergy Awareness Week started by Food Allergy Research Education (FARE). To raise awareness of the growing issue of food allergy developments, especially in young children, the list of books below offers delicious, allergy-free recipes and fun, relatable stories that teach kids and adults alike how to safely offer an inclusive food environment at schools, parties, and community gatherings. Between gluten, dairy, nut, soy, and many other food allergies, kids can find it difficult and frustrating to live with such restrictions on their diets. Thankfully, awareness of these allergies is growing and more companies and restaurants are creating products, cookbooks, and meals that help accommodate all diets. Whether you have a child with a food allergy or you’re simply hoping to learn more about them, the list of books below will help educate and hopefully inspire you to raise awareness and make the culinary world a more inclusive place for everyone.

Corn, Tori.
Dixie Wants an Allergy. 2014.
On Dixie’s first day of school, she learns about her fellow classmate’s various food allergies. One classmate gets to order special meals at restaurants due to her wheat allergy. Another student talks about his trip to the emergency room when he accidentally ingested dairy. Dixie becomes jealous of the special treatment these students receive and wishes she could have a food allergy, too, but she soon learns that food allergies certainly aren’t always fun to live with.
[SSHEL S-Collection SE. C8143di]

Fliess, Sue.
A Gluten-Free Birthday for Me! 2013.
A birthday party isn’t complete without cake, but what happens when the birthday girl is allergic to gluten? The birthday girl and her mother don’t see this as a problem at all and make a delicious gluten-free chocolate cookie-crumble cake that can be enjoyed by everyone.
[SSHEL S-Collection SE. F643g]

Gleeson, Erin.
The Forest Feast for Kids: Colorful Vegetarian Recipes that are Simple to Make. 2016.
Written by best-selling author Erin Gleeson, this gorgeously illustrated cookbook offers simple and delicious vegetarian recipes for kids. Complete with beautiful watercolors hand painted by the author and recipes based on a wholesome, plant-based diet, this cookbook is sure to please any vegetarian chef.
[SSHEL S-Collection Q. S.641.5636 G479f]

Gordon, Sherri Mabry.
Peanut Butter, Milk, and Other Deadly Threats: What You Should Know About Food Allergies. 2006.
This book offers explanations and first-person accounts of common food allergies that affect more than 11 million people in the United States. From peanut to milk to wheat allergies, the book offers helpful advice, warnings, and support for those afflicted by or parents of children afflicted by a food allergy.
[SSHEL S-Collection S.616.975 G658p]

Howe, James.
Horace and Morris Say Cheese (Which Makes Dolores Sneeze!). 2009.
Dolores and her friends enjoy spending time doing what they love most: eating cheese! But one day, Dolores has an allergic reaction and discovers that she can no longer eat cheese. Deeply upset, Dolores struggles to find new foods that can replace the cheese she so dearly loves. She soon discovers a knack for creating new, cheese-less recipes that teach her to enjoy eating again.
[SSHEL S-Collection SE. H838hor]

Koster, Gloria.
The Peanut-Free Café. 2006.
For Simon and most of the students at Nutley School, peanut butter is a staple during lunchtime. But when new student Grant shows up to Nutley and explains his peanut allergy, problems arise. The students decide to open a “Peanut-Free Café” to include Grant during lunchtime and learn that there’s more to life than peanut butter.
[SSHEL S-Collection Q. SE. K8481p]

Kruszka, Bonnie J.
Eating Gluten-Free with Emily: A Story for Children with Celiac Disease. 2004.
Emily, a five-year-old girl, starts feeling pain and discomfort whenever she eats, but she can’t understand why. She is soon diagnosed with Celiac Disease and learns what living a “gluten-free lifestyle” means. Though she finds the new diet challenging at times, Emily learns how to enjoy gluten-free food, how to express her frustrations with her parents, and how to continue enjoying her life as a fun-loving girl who just happens to have some dietary restrictions.
[SSHEL S-Collection S. K946e]

Miller, Edward.
The Monster Health Book: A Guide to Eating Healthy, Being Active & Feeling Great for Monsters & Kids! 2006.
With a charming monster as its main character, this book helps teach kids the importance of eating healthy and staying active. By explaining the food pyramid, healthy alternatives to junk food, common food allergies, and healthy body image, this book is the perfect guide to help kids adopt a healthy lifestyle.
[SSHEL S-Collection Q. S.613.7 M613m]

Ware, Cheryl.
Venola the Vegetarian. 2008.
Seventh grader Venola is already starting her year with some big changes: her mom is pregnant, her role model is sick, and a particularly eye-opening science class inspires her to become a vegetarian. Venola navigates middle school as best as she can and teaches herself how to prepare healthy, delicious vegetarian meals for herself and her growing family.
[SSHEL S-Collection S. W22v]

Zevy, Aaron.
No Nuts for Me. 1995.
Follow young Noah around during a typical week of school, shopping with mom, and attending a friend’s birthday party. As you learn about his life, you’ll also learn about his nut allergy. Noah explains to readers that he has to be very careful about the food he eats and he always carries his EpiPen with him. His assures the reader that his allergy doesn’t stop him from having fun, though!
[SSHEL S-Collection S.616.975 Z61N]


Sometimes, a book inspires you to action. This is particularly true with cookbooks, which have a practical use beyond just perusing. Teachers introducing new cultures and traditions may want to include a tasting lesson. Kids and teens might want to stretch their creative muscles and give a new recipe a try on their own. Parents could begin helping their children develop independent skills in the kitchen, one easy ingredient at a time. Whatever the reason, the S-Collection’s cookbooks are educational, fun…and tasty.
To find cookbooks or books with recipes, try a subject search of “juvenile” combined with a keyword search of “cookbook” and/or “recipe*”; you can add keywords like “vegetarian,” “Indian,” or “dessert” to find your favorite type of cuisine!

Brennan, Georgeanne.
Green Eggs and Ham Cookbook: Recipes Inspired by Dr. Seuss! 2006.
Pair your favorite Dr. Seuss rhymes with silly, delicious treats like Cat in the Hat Pudding and real Green Eggs and Ham!

Chung, Okwha.
Cooking the Korean Way. 2003.
Chung focuses on the rich culture associated with food in Korea while presenting delicious, easy recipes for san jok (vegetable and beef skewers) and other traditional dishes.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S. 641.59519 C472k]

Cotler, Amy.
My Little House Cookbook. 1996.
Fans of the Laura Ingalls Wilder Little House series will love a chance to make some frontier food that Laura and her sister might really have eaten.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S. 641.5123 W645m]

Dahl, Roald.
Roald Dahl’s Revolting Recipes. 1994.
Some of the names might not be very appetizing — Stink Bug Eggs and Lickable Wallpaper don’t exactly sound delicious — but Roald Dahl promises to please kids in the kitchen with yummy (and silly) recipes inspired by his beloved books.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S. 641.5123 D137r1997]

Frankeny, Frankie.
The Star Wars Cookbook II: Darth Malt and Other Galactic Recipes. 2000.
Doesn’t food just taste better when the recipe comes from a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away? Each dish in this cookbook, from salad to dessert, is inspired by a Star Wars character or location.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S. 641.5 F853S 2000]

Gold, Rozanne.
Kids Cook 1-2-3: Recipes for Young Chefs Using Only 3 Ingredients. 2006.
Kids Cook 1-2-3 is the perfect starting cookbook for even the youngest children. Recipes are friendly to small hands and encourage collaboration between guardians and children in the kitchen; the basic PB & J is represented, but so is more exotic fare, like wasabi-crusted salmon!
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S. 641.5123 G563k]

Gordon, Lynn.
Messipes: A Microwave Cookbook of Deliciously Messy Masterpieces. 1996.
Ovens aren’t always kid-friendly — but microwaves often are! This sandwich-shaped cookbook spices up favorite recipes but stays simple enough for young ones to follow.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S. 641.5882 G656m]

Groner, Judith.
Maccabee Meals: Food and Fun for Hanukkah. 2012.
The eight nights of Hanukkah can be even sweeter with the recipes in this book; many are paired with activities for the whole family to enjoy.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION 641.568 G898m]

Krizmanic, Judy.
The Teen’s Vegetarian Cookbook. 1999.
New vegetarians of all ages can appreciate the ease and diversity of recipes included in this cookbook; the author also recommends it for parents who unexpectedly find themselves raising — and feeding — a young vegetarian.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S. 641.5363 K899t]

Ling, Mary.
The Pirate Cook Book. 1997.
Pirate Pete brings kid chefs recipes from the high seas. He recommends the Scurvy Salsa and Salty Dog Snacks!
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S. 641.5 L646C1997]

McCallum, Ann.
Eat Your U.S. History Homework: Recipes for Revolutionary Minds. 2014.
Eat Your U.S. History Homework takes hands-on learning to a whole new level! Recipes include succotash from the First Thanksgiving and Colonial Cherry-Berry Grunts to help kids taste the past. Other books in the series include Eat Your Science Homework and Eat your Math Homework.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S. 641.5973 M124e]

McElmeel, Sharron L.
Authors in the Kitchen: Recipes, Stories, and More. 2005.
Children’s book authors from Eric Carle to Yuyi Morales share recipes inspired by their stories — what better way to end a read-out-loud than with a treat!

Parham, Vanessa Roberts.
The African-American Child’s Heritage Cookbook. 1993.
Parham uses her home economics background to lay out traditional African and African-American recipes in an easy-to-follow way. She includes little history lessons along the way to explain the origins of familiar recipes.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S. 641.59296703 P217a]

Plotkin, Gregory.
Cooking the Russian Way. 2003.
Those looking for a little borscht will find it here, alongside brief discussions of Russia’s changing political and cultural scenery.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S.641.5947 P724c]

Smithyman, Kathryn.
Native North American Foods and Recipes. 2006.
An effective companion to introductory lessons about the indigenous peoples of North America, this cookbook highlights historical facts while describing — and providing step-by-step instructions to make — recipes that have been part of the diets of different Native Nations.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S. 641.59 Sm69n]

Vezza, Diane Simone.
Passport on a Plate: A Round-the-World Cookbook for Children. 1997.
Learn about international food customs and etiquette as you make delicacies from the Caribbean, Russia, the Middle East, and more.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION S. 641.59 V649p]

White, Linda.
Cooking on a Stick: Campfire Recipes for Kids. 1996.
S’mores and hot dogs are just the beginning in this outdoorsy recipe book. Kids who love camping are sure to love ideas for food they can cook themselves over the fire.
[SSHEL S COLLECTION 641.578 W584c]