If you are wondering is rice gluten free, gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye and triticale that must be avoided by those sensitive to it or suffering from celiac disease. Rice naturally lacks gluten.
Unfortunately, many flavored rice mixes sold at grocery stores contain gluten as a thickener or flavor enhancer. Be wary when purchasing these products! Read their labels closely.
Natural rice varieties are gluten free; however, you should take caution with any flavored mixes that may contain gluten ingredients. Also read labels before ordering in restaurants as many seasoned rice dishes contain broths or soy sauce that could contain harmful gluten components which could put those living with celiac disease at risk.
Even if the rice you buy is naturally gluten free, it could still contain cross-contamination from being processed at a facility which also processes wheat, barley or rye. For maximum safety, purchase certified gluten-free products and avoid bulk bins at grocery stores.
Mahatma and Zatarain’s are gluten free brands of flavored rice products; however, some ingredients such as tamari or hydrolyzed wheat protein may still contain gluten traces. When choosing an appropriate brand it’s wise to read its label thoroughly to be sure all its components are listed therein.
Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye and triticale that some individuals are sensitive to or suffer from celiac disease and must avoid. Plain rice naturally is gluten-free so can be enjoyed as part of many recipes and at restaurants without issue; however flavored varieties may contain thickeners or sauces containing gluten if processed near or in the same facility as gluten-containing products.
Some brands of flavored rice such as Zatarain’s are certified gluten-free; however, you should always read labels on all flavored rice products to verify whether or not they contain gluten ingredients. Be especially wary when purchasing from bulk bins as many shoppers do not wash their scoops between different bins so your rice could become cross-contaminated with gluten from other food items in the store. If unsure, contact the manufacturer for additional guidance.
Many restaurants rely on precooked rice mixes that may contain gluten. When combined with sauces that also contain gluten and ingredients such as croutons that may cross-contaminate meals for those living with celiac disease. Because these items are often made using equipment that also prepares flour-based products, they pose an immediate danger of cross contamination of meals consumed at these establishments. To combat this problem, restaurants can create their rice dishes from scratch using gluten free ingredients.
If you have a gluten allergy or celiac disease when dining out, it’s essential that you notify your server of this fact and understands how they should prepare gluten free dishes for you. If they don’t understand, don’t be shy about asking to speak with the manager instead.
Some restaurants provide exclusively gluten-free menus, like Dirt Candy in New York City. Offering brunch favorites and dinner entrees in an aesthetically pleasing space, this Neapolitan pizza stalwart provides 19 gluten-free pies plus sides such as arancini and salads.
Gluten free rice can be used in place of wheat flour in many dishes as an excellent source of fiber and protein, antioxidants and phytonutrients – making it an excellent option for people living with celiac disease, wheat allergies or non-celiac gluten sensitivity.
Keep in mind, however, that not all rice products are gluten free. Fried rice often includes soy sauce which contains gluten, and some rice mixes contain additional grains that do not comply with gluten-free regulations.
At restaurants and grocery stores, it’s essential to be mindful of these issues when eating out or shopping for groceries. When reaching for buffet bin flavored rice dishes, be mindful that other customers’ scoops could contaminate it with wheat flour, rye flour, barley, spelt or durum flour; additionally, some flavored rice mixes contain wheat-based thickeners or flavorings like malt extract which could contaminate even those labeled gluten free!