A common question I hear from the gluten free community is "What spices and seasonings are safe?" In fact, this inquiry just came up in my Facebook group. I feel this topic is very worthy of a post!
This is a great question. It is not uncommon for spices and spice blends to contain wheat which is used as an anti-caking agent. In sauces, gluten is often used as a stabilizer or thickener. If it is intentionally added for this purpose, wheat will be reported in the list of ingredients.
Gluten (most often in the form of wheat) can also be added to these products unintentionally through the manufacturing process. This is known as the dreaded cross-contamination. If wheat is unintentionally added to spices or sauces, its presence does not have to be disclosed on the label. The FDA does not require the disclosure of possible cross-contamination. Crazy, right?!? There's a lot of work to be done to improve labeling standards and regulations. Thankfully, there are some great advocates working on this.
Our family's favorite spices are McCormick spices and seasonings. This company will disclose any presence of gluten clearly on the label (including sources of cross-contamination). Also noteworthy is the fact that although most of their spices are gluten free, you will not see a gluten free statement on the label. As long as there are no sources of gluten listed in the ingredients, you can be assured it is gluten free.
Need to learn how to look for gluten on a label? Read this post for tips.
My spice cabinet is full of McCormick single spices and also some spice blends. We love the following blends: Italian Seasoning, Poultry Seasoning, and Lawry's Seasoned salt.
We also frequently use the following spice packets that are certified gluten free: chili seasoning, taco seasoning, and gravy mix.
A bonus is that McCormick products are always easy to find in grocery stores near you.
McCormick spices fill my spice cabinet
Pioneer Brand is another company that makes great certified gluten free packets. I find these at Hy-Vee stores. Give them a try!
For soups and stew, we use Herb-ox gluten free chicken and beef bouillon granules. Great flavor!
These great companies also make a variety of gluten free seasonings and spices:
- Flavor God - Offer many great gluten free seasoning blends that get awesome reviews. Check them out.
- Magic Seasonings - According to the company, all the blends are considered gluten-free to 20 parts per million except for Breading Magic and Gumbo Gravy Magic.
- Spicely Organic - This company makes a variety of spices that are certified organic and certified gluten free.
In addition to the above seasonings, these are some of our very favorite gluten free sauces:
- Favorite Soy Sauce - Kikkoman Gluten Free Soy Sauce (certified gluten free)
- Favorite Worcestershire Sauce - Lea & Perrins
- Favorite Barbecue Sauce - Stubb's Sticky Sweet (certified gluten free) and Sweet Baby Ray's Honey Barbecue Sauce.
- Favorite Marinara Sauce - Prego - always gluten free!
- Favorite Salad Dressing - Hidden Valley Original Ranch and Ken's Steakhouse Country French. I've not tried their products yet, but have heard amazing things about Primal Kitchen products. They make a number of salad dressing and sauces, many of which are certified gluten free. Try them out!
I hope these ideas add some flavor and happiness to your gluten free meals.
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