Seven Surprising Gluten-Free Foods

When I was diagnosed with Celiac disease, there were a ton of things that I cut out of my diet that I later re-introduced. I’ve discovered that even if it isn’t marked gluten-free, it might still be gluten-free. It’s just that there are strict guidelines if a product is going to be marked gluten-free that most companies don’t want to follow.

Always be careful when eating food not marked gluten-free. Stick to small portions until you know whether or not the food will bother you. Always pay attention to what your innards have to say! If you react to a food, stop eating it – it’s as simple (and sad) as that.

So here’s my list of seven surprising gluten-free foods, in reverse order…

7. Nacho Chips

Most nacho chips only have corn-based grains. I have had great luck with Tostitos, although obviously the multigrain flavor is out. Stick with chips that have just a few ingredients. Add some salsa and cheese (both of which are usually gluten-free) for a delicious snack!

6. U.S. Lea and Perrins Worcestershire Sauce

The first ingredient in Canadian and British Lea and Perrins Worcestershire sauce is malt vinegar, which contains barley. However, the same sauce in the United States is gluten-free, using spirit vinegar instead of malt vinegar. No, I don’t know why. But I do know I got my parents to buy me a few bottles on their last trip to the U.S. 🙂

5. Taco Shells

Like nachos, most taco shells are corn-based and gluten free. (Remember, though, always read the ingredients!) They are an excellent idea for meal night: chop up some vegetables, put out some sour cream and salsa, fry up some ground beef, grate some cheese, and let everyone create their own taco!

4. Chapman’s Ice Cream

This Canadian ice cream company makes all of their original ice cream flavors gluten-free. Many of their other products are gluten-free too, and feature a symbol that is easy to spot. Plus, they offer many other specialty products, including lactose-free and low fat ice cream.

3. Doritos

All flavours of Doritos are gluten-free except for Nacho Cheese. Bring on the Cool Ranch! You can see a full list of gluten-free Canadian Frito-Lay products here. Note their warning about the (very slight) possibility of cross-contamination!

2. Cheese Slices

Most cheese products are gluten-free, but I was really surprised when I found out that that extended to processed cheese, too. Kraft cheese slices are one of my go-to foods!

1. Chex

A friend told me about gluten-free Chex, currently only available in the United States. It tastes just like normal cereal and is available in Chocolate, Rice, Corn, Cinnamon, and Honey Nut. Plus, Chex has a ton of great recipes to go with it. Now, the downside is that it’s only available in the U.S., so if you know someone that has a trip planned, get them to bring you some back! It’s available in most grocery stores at around $3 a box.)

A Postscript on Potatoes

This one couldn’t be in the list because I knew from the start that potatoes are OK. However, many people think potatoes have gluten. Why??? I’d die without my starchy friends. (Caveat: Some processed potato products can contain wheat.)

Do you have a favorite, surprising gluten free food? I’d love to hear about it!


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  1. #1 by Robin on February 1, 2011 - 9:10 am

    Oh potatoes… I’m going to have to do more research and look a little closer at some recipes, but Potato Bread might possibly be a good alternative. It’s also magically delicious.

  2. #2 by Robin on February 1, 2011 - 9:33 am

    I lied… you’d be hard pressed to find a GOOD recipe for potato bread that doesn’t use flour. Sorry. I got ahead of myself. It can be done, but not as easily as I thought…

    • #3 by glutenfree4hfx on February 1, 2011 - 11:07 am

      Well that’s not a surprise, but I am intrigued by potato flour! I will let you know if I find any good recipes!

  3. #4 by Michael Kelly on May 18, 2011 - 9:46 pm

    Supposedly Chex are coming to Canada in June 2011! 🙂

    • #5 by glutenfree4hfx on May 19, 2011 - 7:57 am

      This is incredibly exciting!!! Thank you so much for sharing the news – I somehow hadn’t heard of this yet. I will be posting today!

  4. #6 by LCA on April 29, 2012 - 12:18 pm

    Chapman’s Ice Cream recently came out with a bunch of new fun gluten free products. From Super Lollys to variety of Sorbet – it is a perfect treat for a family dinner or a big party. You can follow their promotions and news on

    • #7 by glutenfree4hfx on April 30, 2012 - 12:46 pm

      Thanks for the tip! We actually just tried their Fudgesicles and were impressed. Watch for a post soon!

  5. #8 by Richids Coulter on February 4, 2013 - 2:46 pm

    It’s unfortunate that Doritos are full of MSG ingredients and GMO’s. There are definitely other options like “Late July” that use 100% Non-GMO, organic ingredients for those wishing a Doritos-like snack without all the chemicals.

  6. #9 by Gluten Allergy Guy on September 16, 2013 - 6:18 pm

    Potatoes is in the “should be gluten free – fooled you!” category. Of course potatoes themselves are fine, but more and more, french fries are dusted with a mixture of wheat and spices. And not all potato chips are safe. I used to be fooled by potatoes, but not any more!

    • #10 by glutenfree4hfx on September 16, 2013 - 6:19 pm

      Spices can be the worst culprit! Most Lay’s flavours of potato chips are fine, except for BBQ. I find that these are constant reminders to always read the labels 🙂

  7. #11 by Gfree momma on November 2, 2013 - 6:08 pm

    I love the gluten free Nut Thins crackers in Ranch flavor (only in the States). Sooo yummy!

    • #12 by glutenfree4hfx on November 2, 2013 - 9:25 pm

      I am pretty sure I have seen those here in Canada… One of our favorites!

  1. Seven Surprising Gluten-Free Foods (via Gluten For Punishment) « Family Journey

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