I use to think avoiding dairy and eggs was tricky. Especially when explaining to other people. Then Molly had to go gluten free for a while, and eventually so did I. Suddenly saying ‘vegan’ seemed easier. Here are our tips when you enter the gluten free zone!
Gluten is in places you’d never expect which frankly is a bit of a pain. The obvious things are easy…goodbye baguettes, sandwiches and pasta in most restaurants. It’s the tricky things like sauces and soups being thickened with flour that can catch you out!
When other people are feeding you or your child:
There are the screamingly obvious things to mention:
Pasta, pizza, bread, crackers, crisp breads, cookies, biscuits, doughnuts, cakes, pastry, anything in batter, rye bread, any bread other than specific gluten free bread, breadcrumbs, flour, pies, tarts, quiches,
Less screamingly obvious but you have to tell everyone:
Thickened with wheat flour – Soups, Gravy and store bought sauces
Chips/crisps that have flavourings contain flour as part of the mix of spices
Oats – that means porridge, oat cakes, flap jacks, unless make specifically with gluten free oats. For some reason people seem to think if it’s organic, its okay – it’s not.
Under the heading of ‘you’re kidding me????’
Soya Sauce – virtually all of them – Tamari Sauce should be fine.
Teriyaki sauce, hoisin sauce – any Asian sauce made with soya sauce
Baking Powder – yes there are gluten free versions
These are a nightmare. It’s really best to stick to Nature’s Path and other specific gluten free brands. Otherwise you’ll just make yourself miserable reading through them all.
Sausages and burgers often have wheat – and don’t forget to check all pate labels too. Most supermarkets now have gluten free sausages.
Watch out for chocolates with wafers, malts, crispy bits.
When I was out…
I love Chinese and Asian food and the shops are filled with sauces. I was in Waitrose recently and they had a tonne of packed sauces to go with Rice Noodles. Now you’d think ‘ohhh rice noodles and sauce – great’, no…the black bean sauce? – wheat flour, sweet and sour? wheat flour, spicy szechuan sauce? wheat flour, sweet and sour?…wheat flour…oh so irritating.