Organic cocoa powder is full of heart-healthy antioxidants, fiber, protein and has a far higher concentration of mood-enhancing compounds than chocolate. Not to mention a deep rich chocolate taste when sweetened just enough to offset cocoa's inherent bitterness.
I have to admit giving up my McCormick spices was a bit harder than switching cocoa powders. As a cookbook writer I think I have just about every McCormick spice available. I also wasn't really sure what spice company I could trust anymore.
I still use the McCormick Cream of Tartar. Eventually I hope to find a replacement for that, too.
Many of my herbs I grow myself and then chop and freeze for later use.
The main spices we use now are from The Spicy Gourmet
. These are organic and Fairtrade spices. Some are whole spices such as nutmeg or coriander and we grind it or micrograte it. Currently, this is my preferred brand of spices.
We also use Litehouse which are freeze-dried herbs and spices, but they're not organic. I discuss them in greater detail on my blog post Litehouse Freeze-Dried Herbs and Spices. We just love the fresh taste they add to some of my dishes. These are available in many grocery stores now for less than $4 a bottle.
Keep in mind that some supposed naturally gluten-free spices do actually contain gluten. For instance many paprika add something to keep it from clumping.
It's smart to introduce spices one at a time and wait a week to see if you have any reaction. If you can't find them in your store many of their products are available on amazon as add-ons where you're able to still take advantage of the free shipping option. Our family had reactions to this line of spices.
Our family currently can not eat any type of black pepper and apparently for several in the GlutenZAP forums
this is also an issue. Just something to keep in mind if you can't seem to pinpoint the cause of your food reactions.