How To Recognize Gluten on a List of Ingredients (Plus a List of Hidden Gluten Ingredients)

Going gluten free may be one of the best health decisions you make for yourself. After my Celiac Disease diagnosis and a few days of going gluten free, I felt like a new person.If you’re sensitive to gluten or you have celiac disease, eliminating gluten can change your life, too.

You’ll have more energy, less pain, and you’ll feel as if you’ve gotten your life back. It’s amazing how much of an impact a single factor can have on your health and your life.

There are many myths about living a gluten-free lifestyle. One prevalent myth is that living gluten free is difficult. It’s not. It does, however, require you to make some changes to your eating habits and to learn how to read labels. You might be surprised where you’ll find hidden gluten ingredients when you’re at the supermarket.

How to Avoid Gluten

The easiest way to avoid gluten is to eat whole foods. We’re talking about meat, fruits, veggies, beans, eggs, dairy, nuts, and seeds. The things that you typically find on the perimeter of the grocery store. These items don’t contain gluten. You’re not going to find gluten in a steak or in an apple. About 99% of everything in the produce aisle is safe - sometimes they through some extra things there like shortcake by the strawberries which is why I didn't say 100...

Gluten-Containing Ingredients to Avoid:

  • Wheat
  • Rye
  • Barley
  • Oats (unless certified gluten-free)
  • Malt
  • Brewer’s yeast

Additionally, the following items may contain gluten or may be derived from gluten:

  • Modified Food Starch
  • Starch
  • Dextrin

Most Malodextrin in the US is derived from corn today, but it's better to be safe than sorry and call the company to confirm. If your diet contains processed and packaged foods (think about cereal, pasta, and snacks that you eat), then you’re going to want to make some substitutions. For example, instead of eating granola for breakfast, you might eat rice cereal or find a certified gluten free brand. Instead of eating pasta for dinner you might eat rice or enjoy spaghetti squash instead. Today there are thousands of gluten-free options to choose from even when it comes to pasta.

It can be frustrating trying to remember all of the ingredients that could make you sick. So I created this free cheat sheet of hidden gluten ingredients for you to use! Click the button below to get instant access to the guide.

Gluten-Free Labeling

Fortunately, more and more companies are labeling their foods “gluten free.” This makes it easier to know that you’re buying a product that is safe for you. Look for the gluten free label or seal and/or the words “made in a gluten free facility,” or on gluten free equipment. Conversely, you may find foods that are gluten free, for example, oats, but the label says that they’re made in a facility where wheat or gluten is processed. If you’re highly sensitive to gluten or have Celiac, this is a product to avoid.

The Gluten Free Aisle

At your supermarket you may find a growing selection of gluten-free products. These products range from bread and pasta to baked goodies like cookies and cake. This is both wonderful and detrimental. When you first go gluten free, you might lean heavily on these items. You might be tempted to fill your cupboard with gluten-free processed foods like cookies and snacks. Keep in mind they’re not any better for you than any other processed food. They are still full of sugars and carbs. While it’s okay to have a gluten-free cookie or cupcake once in a while, try to find alternatives. For example, instead of eating gluten-free pasta try zucchini noodles (or “zoodles”) or spaghetti squash.

With a little education on label reading and avoiding gluten you can eat well on a gluten-free diet. There are thousands of gluten free products and food choices and even more recipes to try. Living gluten free can be delicious and healthy.

I'm always pinning gluten free recipes on Pinterest. Follow me here:



Blog, Gluten FreeJenna Drew