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Surprising Foods That Contain Gluten

For anyone with Celiac disease, the word "gluten" probably has a prominent place in daily conversations. But gluten is no laughing matter, especially if your body can't process it and you are trying to adhere to a gluten-free diet. If this is the case, you need to get the facts before dining out or shopping at the grocery store.

A protein found in wheat, rye, and barley, gluten is usually the main ingredient in grain-based products like breads and pastries since it allows flour to rise. When first setting out on a gluten-free diet, the rule of thumb is this: the doughier the item, the more harmful it probably is; the usual suspects include bread, crackers, cookies, biscuits, pasta, pizza, and cake.

With all that said, there are a number of foods with hidden sources of gluten that you may find surprising. Keep in mind that some companies offer gluten-free variations of these items, but always be sure to read ingredient labels thoroughly. Keep reading to arm yourself with this gluten information.

  • Twizzlers licorice
  • Malt vinegar
  • Pickles (made with nondistilled vinegar)
  • Blue cheese
  • Couscous
  • Hot dogs
  • Gravy powders
  • Root beer
  • Cold-cut meats
  • Canned baked beans
  • Pudding
  • Boxed soups
  • Soy sauce
  • Dry mustard powder
  • Salad dressings
  • Tabbouleh
  • Communion wafers
  • Sausages
  • Curry powder
  • Beer

Which food on this list do you find the most surprising?

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freekitties freekitties 5 years
kudos to those with this disease who do a little research before dining out! i manage a restaurant and there are so many diseases/diets guests have questions about and it is extremely hard to keep them straight, especially in the middle of a busy night. the most frustrating question i, or my servers get asked is: "i have a problem with _____ in my diet, what would you suggest i eat here?" it would be so great to get specific questions like, "does your soup/salad dressing/veggie patty/etc contain _____?" we try to be as aware as we can but if we do not suffer from the disease and have to try to be aware of all of them at once, and allergies as well, it can become very confusing. the last thing anyone in the restaurant industry wants is to have guests have a bad reaction to something they ate in their establishment. the more informed you are about your specific disease the more we can help you have a great dining experience.
amber512 amber512 6 years
Oh Anon I agree. The first ingredient in my church's crackers is wheat. :(
natswrite natswrite 6 years
The stinky thing is gluten can be found in "natural spices/flavorings" and they don't label it - the FDA really needs to get on that! I never thought about root beer or pickles, though pickles make more sense if they use vinegar. Beer is kind of a no-brainer :) but I mourn the loss of licorice the most from this list - there is no gluten-free version, while a lot of the other items there can be found with G versions.
brilliance13 brilliance13 6 years
curry powder and pickles!?? gahahhhh
amber512 amber512 6 years
I totally agree testadura67. Would definitely make life easier. As well as requiring "made in a facility that also processes..." be in LARGE letters and explain what exactly they do to prevent cross contamination. That would greatly reduce the amount of research I have to do.
Angelica-Marden Angelica-Marden 6 years
The pickles/vinegar bits get me. I would have never guessed!
alisonelainescott alisonelainescott 6 years
PICKLES!? really?? what is gluten used for in pickles?.... curry powder, hot dogs, and chocolate I'm also going to have to watch for :(
testadura67 testadura67 6 years
I really wish food manufacturers were required to put whether or not their product contains gluten, not just wheat. It would make a lot less frustrating and painful.
jesikah85 jesikah85 6 years
Some of those are so crazy! Root beer?? Gluten is in almost all of my faux meat products like pepperoni, hot dogs, meatballs and faken' bacon!
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