Ultimate Gluten-Free Food List for Families

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Ultimate Gluten-Free Food List for Families

Do you need to suddenly follow a gluten-free diet because your child was diagnosed with celiac disease? Are you following a gluten-free diet for another health reason? You need our Ultimate Gluten-Free Food List

Gluten Free Certification

Gluten-free food has come a long way over the past 10 years. It is now relatively easy to find gluten-free alternatives to many of your favorite foods and cooking ingredients. However, not all of them taste like your favorite foods so it can be hard to know which items to buy. Given that gluten-free foods are also significantly more expensive, it’s hard to just buy things to try without knowing if you’ll like them. 

That’s why I put together this gluten-free food list! Even before our daughter was diagnosed with celiac disease, I was following a mostly gluten-free diet due to my own autoimmune issues and would often get questions about product recommendations. Once I had to really search for kid-friendly gluten-free options, I decided to create this gluten-free food list as a starting point for parents. I hope that this can help take some of the stress out of where to start!

Using the Gluten-Free Food List

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This gluten-free food list is broken into 7 categories: 

1. Carbohydrates

For many foods in this group, you will be searching for a gluten-free label or reading ingredients. I have outlined some of our favorite brands that should be common in your local grocery store.

We were thrilled when we discovered Annie’s Mac & Cheese Cups! Not only does it taste great, but they are easy to pack for travel as well. Another easy favorite is Mama Mary’s Pizza Crust. These are awesome for quick pizza weeknight dinners before or after activities. 

When it comes to baking, there are also some really good boxed mixes out there! King Arthur Brownie Mix and Kodiak Gluten Free Pancake Mix are 2 that we keep in the pantry 24/7. I also like to keep a good gluten-free flour on hand for any recipe that calls for all-purpose flour. I have tried several and Cup4Cup Multipurpose Flour has been the winner for cupcake baking in our household.

2. Protein 

All animal protein sources are naturally gluten-free. When buying pre-seasoned meats and seafoods, you need to check the ingredients label to be sure that there are no gluten-containing ingredients. This includes more common products that you may not think about, such as meatballs, hot dogs, sausage, deli meats, and ground meat. Many times, wheat ingredients are used as fillers and binders. 

Vegetarian protein sources are also an area where you need to read labels. Wheat ingredients are often used in products such as veggie burgers and other meat alternatives.

3. Fruits & Vegetables

All fruits and vegetables are naturally gluten-free, so anything fresh or frozen should be safe. When purchasing fruits and vegetables that have sauces, or have been dried or canned, be sure to check that no gluten-containing ingredients are present.

4. Dairy

Plain dairy products such as milk, cheese, cottage cheese, and yogurt are also naturally gluten-free. You need to proceed with caution when flavorings are added, such as with flavored milks or yogurt. 

5. Condiments

You have to be very careful with condiments as this is where gluten can be hidden. Some of the first condiments we needed to search for were Asian-style sauces, as they usually contain soy sauce and wheat. 

A few of our favorites are Kikkoman Soy Sauce and Teriyaki Sauce and San-J Mongolian Sauce, and Big Tree Farms Soy Free Ponzu Sauce. When we go out for sushi, I pack a ramekin with half gluten-free soy sauce and half gluten free ponzu sauce. It is the tastiest dipping sauce! 

Mom and daughter grocery shopping

6. Snacks

Gluten-free snacks are getting easier to find. I try to search for something new every few grocery trips to keep my little one excited about the changes, rather than upset about them. We also make time to try out stores that we typically don’t shop at, since products change from store to store. 

One snack that the whole family loves is Marimix Snack Mix! I met one of the owners on a flight who just happened be from my alma mater and I just loved their story and their snacks! A couple other key finds to replace some typical kid favorites are Glutino Animal Crackers and Simple Mills Pop Mmms Crackers

7. Frozen

Many gluten-free foods are found in the frozen section. This is helpful if not everyone in the family is eating gluten-free. We mentioned that these products are more expensive, so we definitely don’t want to be throwing any out because it spoils. 

Udi’s has been our go-to for bagels and buns, while Katz is great for sweet treats! We keep some on hand to pull out and send in to school for birthdays. 

Naturally Gluten-Free Foods

Remember that kids don’t need to eat pre-packaged, gluten-free snack foods all day! As you read above, so many healthful foods are naturally free from gluten. Fresh fruits and vegetables, cheese, yogurt, and nuts make great snacks for kids, too! 

When thinking about meals, start simple and choose whole foods like plain meat or fish, rice or potatoes, and a veggie or fruit side. Simplifying your menu will really help reduce the stress and overwhelm that comes with a new diagnosis.

Tips for Grocery Shopping

Most stores have a designated gluten-free section in the store, which can make grocery shopping a little easier. However, other products can be scattered throughout the frozen foods, baking, and snacks sections. Try to give yourself some extra time to grocery shop until you get comfortable with where your favorite items are. 

Stressful to Stress Free

Many larger chains of grocery stores have also started carrying store brand gluten-free items, which can be a nice way to save money. 

It can be tempting to feel overwhelmed and buy all the gluten-free things, but stick to your list and aim to try 1 new food each trip. This will keep costs more reasonable as well as make you feel less stressed.

Ultimate Gluten-Free Food List [PDF]

Can’t wait to get your hands on our Ultimate Gluten-Free Food List? You can download it here!

Gluten-Free Food List

About the Author

Dru Rosales

Dru Rosales, MS, RD, LD is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian. She specializes in helping busy families understand how to go gluten-free with a school-age child while still making sure that they are providing the right nutrition foundation. She also has a strong background in eating disorders, weight management, and sports nutrition, and brings mindfulness and an intuitive eating approach to all she does. Dru received her Bachelor’s Degree in Kinesiology from the University of Southern California and her Master’s Degree in Nutritional Science from California State University, Los Angeles.

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