Gluten-free Superhero Birthday Party
Table of Contents:
- Entertainment: Superheroes, of Course!
- Party Favors: Capes
- Gluten-Free Birthday Food: Taco Bar
- Decorate-Your-Own Gluten-Free Cupcake
- Gluten-Free Superhero Birthday Cakes
Our first gluten-free birthday party… why not do it big? 70 guests, including 37 children!
CJ and Miss E agreed on a joint gluten-free Superhero birthday party, which according to pinterest, apparently has endless creative possibilities.
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Entertainment: Superheroes, of Course!
Since we were doing all of the food ourselves, I decided to keep the party prep as simple as possible and contacted Dava at Dazzling D’s Princess Productions to see if Spiderman & Wonder Woman could host games at the party. Since Dazzling D’s specializes in princesses, I was thrilled to find out she also has superheroes.
They delivered! After a quick meet-and-greet with photo opps, Spiderman and Wonder Woman played with the littles for an hour, everything from superhero training to duck-duck-goose. They got down with the kids and were 100% the entire time. Miss E was especially fond of her new friend, Wonder Woman, who gave her tons of birthday girl attention. They were inseparable.
We have a tiny, wonderful house in a great neighborhood, too small to accommodate 70 guests without having to serve food in the garage. Fortunately, we also have a large, green belt in front of our home… the perfect space for a huge party. I purchased two human hamster balls from Costco, and between those and Superhero games, the littles made great use of all the green space.
Party Favors: Capes
Although CJ and Miss E are huge fans of the goody bag, I am not. Instead, I picked up tons of superhero capes, precut superhero logos and shapes out of felt, and provided tacky glue. I also made superhero masks with felt and elastic. This gave the party guests an activity before the superheroes came, a costume for superhero training and a fun gift to take home. I saw several superhero minis in costume over the days following the party.
Gluten-Free Birthday Food: Taco Bar
Let’s get to the food! Having a 100% gluten-free birthday party where Miss E would not be at risk of an accidental “gluttening” at her own party was a priority. I also wanted something that was naturally gluten-free, something that the kiddos wouldn’t think tasted “weird”.
A taco bar seemed like the perfect solution. My chef-for-a-hobby dad was amazing and did most of the food prep. He cooked 20 lbs of ground beef (too much, it turned out, since most of the guests were kiddos), chopped tomatoes, red onions and cilantro. Hubby took care of the homemade guacamole, and I opened a few containers of salsa and sour cream. We provided gluten-free tortilla chips and gluten-free taco shells and fruit.
Decorate-Your-Own Gluten-Free Cupcake
Cupcakes were topped with these cupcake toppers (plus Wonder Woman toppers), cut with a 2 inch punch and glued onto toothpicks. I baked almost 100 chocolate and vanilla cupcakes (saving extra in the freezer for our regular birthday party stash for Miss E and me) and stored them in a freezer for a few days.
A couple of gluten-free professional bakers gave me the following tips and everything turned out perfectly: use an oil-based recipe rather than butter, add sour cream to the recipe for moistness, let cupcakes cool completely, wrap in plastic and freeze, ideally frost while still frozen and serve in 1-2 hours. We didn’t do the last one, but I removed the cupcakes from the freezer right before the party.
The week before CJ and Miss E’s superhero party, a friend had her party guests decorate their own cupcakes. Thank you, very much! Two hours of frosting cupcakes saved! I shamelessly bought Pillsbury frosting (labeled gluten free) rather than make my amazing buttercream frosting.
Sprinkles almost defeated me. With the ubiquitous Wilton stating possible cross-contamination and the alternative I found on amazon.com being quite pricey, I bought granulated sugar and decided to color my own sprinkles with gluten-free food color gels from Duff Goldman (purchased from Amazon and Michael’s). It was an easy solution, and CJ and Miss E enjoyed helping.
Since making sprinkles from scratch, there are now many more off-the-shelf, gluten-free sprinkles, including Betty Crocker sprinkles (double check the current gluten-free status of each product on the Betty Crocker website).
Gluten-Free Superhero Birthday Cakes
CJ insisted that they have their own personal cakes (not cupcakes). While decorating those cakes, I realized the danger of homemade sprinkles… no sprinkle dispensers and my kiddos were about to shovel sugar on their cakes. I used a few empty spice containers from the taco meat prep and procured one more by dumping my cinnamon into a bag temporarily. For the rest of the sprinkles, we put out tiny spoons from one of Miss E’s tea sets. That seemed to do the trick. Decorate-your-own cupcake was a hit with the kids, and several moms told me they plan to copy my stolen idea;)
The birthday party was a success. My superheroes SpiderCJ and MissWonderE smiled ear to ear the entire time, along with their friends, the gluten-free-ness of the party was undetectable, and I was able to slow down enough to let some of my children’s joy rub off on me.
What are your gluten-free party tips? Go Gluten Freely has many more in our future and would love your ideas!
Wow, GF Boy-Girl Superhero Birthday Party looks fantastic. I enjoyed watching these cute photos. At one of the local New York venues we also had hosted a superman inspired party for our twins. All the kids as well as adults had just stunning time over there.
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