Lazy Gluten Free: Hidden Food Sources of Gluten

Hidden Food Sources of Gluten


You probably know the main things to look for when trying to figure out if something is gluten free. If not, check out this comprehensive list from Celiac.com: Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List. In my experience it's usually pretty easy to tell what has gluten in it. However, there's some things that you may not even consider as sources of gluten, and that's why I'm here to tell you what I've learned to look out for.

For the most part, if you're sticking to one-ingredient foods, you're probably not going to have any issues determining if something is gluten free. However, when you start adding a novel-long list of ingredients, or you are not preparing the food yourself, that's where problems come in.

Here's some triggers I look for in foods that have a good chance of containing gluten:
  • Breaded - I would say this one is pretty obvious
  • Deep-fried - generally restaurants do not have a dedicated GF fryer, so breaded foods will share the same oil
  • Creamy (soups, sauces, gravy, etc.) - a very common thickener is flour
  • Sauces - especially dark, savory, and salty as these may contain wheat starch or flour
  • Seasonings - determining the source of the ingredients is important, as they may have come in contact with gluten during manufacturing
  • Modified/gelatinized food starch - typically this is corn, however the source of the starch may be wheat, so unless the source is specified, avoid it
  • Malt - typically derived from barley and if the source is not specified, avoid it
  • Medications - read my post here for detail on this one: Gluten-Free Medications
Keep in mind that this is not an all-inclusive list, but rather a good place where gluten hides most commonly. Remember, when in doubt, just don't eat it!

Next FYI Friday: Hidden Non-Food Sources of Gluten