Gluten Free Grains

Okay, more and more people are gluten and dairy free. Dairy free is easy… no milk products or by products. I am still a little fuzzy on which foods other than wheat products to avoid for the gluten free. What other grains have gluten? Am I safe with Oat flour? Rice products? I am making a pot luck dish for a Red Hat party and there are folks that are gluten free. Part of my dish to pass has a long grain and wild rice layer. That should be safe, right? The rest of the dish is veggies.  Kathy – Walton, NY

Yes, rice is gluten free. Even “glutinous rice” is gluten free, it just contains a higher rice starch content that makes it gummier.

Other grains that contain gluten are: barley (which I react to even more strongly than wheat gluten) rye, triticale, spelt, durum/semolina and even some oats. Actually, oats contain a type of gluten that is more water soluble, making it easier to digest for some that are intolerant to them. Often oats are contaminated by other grains growing in the same field. You can buy certified gluten-free oats, but they are expensive. I eat a bowl of oatmeal every now and then, but don’t use oats much.

Gluten-free seeds/grains include: soy, corn, potato, rice – brown, white and wild, tapioca/manioc/yucca/cassava, sorghum, arrowroot, tef, quinoa, amaranth, buckwheat, and bean flours like garbanzo and black bean, and mung bean noodles.

Hidden gluten comes in the form of soy sauce, thickeners like modified food starch, bread crumbs in meat products like meatballs and meatloaf, and for some really intolerant celiac patients, it can be something as simple as being manufactured in the same facility, touching the equipment that gluten containing foods have been processed on as well. (Luckily I am not that sensitive.)

Your long grain and wild rice dish sounds great.  Just make sure to label it with all of the ingredients, and your gluten-free friends should be thrilled!

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