Know if the Rice is Gluten Free
If you are wondering is rice gluten free? Rice is naturally gluten free; however, during processing or cooking it may become contaminated with gluten through cross-contact with wheat products or due to cross-contamination by store-bought rice mixes containing seasoning packets with gluten.
However, there are a number of things you can do to mitigate this effect – read on!
It’s a natural grain
Rice is naturally gluten-free, yet many individuals with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity may be unaware. While wheat, barley, rye and their counterparts contain gluten, all forms of rice – white, brown, black purple wild rice are gluten free! Even glutinous (Asian/Thai sticky rice) is gluten free regardless of its name!
People living with Celiac disease should only consume plain rice and avoid any flavored mixes or instant flavored rice products, as these often contain thickeners and sauces containing gluten. Furthermore, some flavored products are processed in facilities that also handle gluten-containing grains, potentially leading to cross-contact between the grains used and your rice product. It is best to buy brands of flavored rice that clearly label their gluten-free status; this is particularly important when dining at buffets where other customers could be using the same spoon to scoop pasta and rice from different bins!
It’s a popular food
Rice, both brown and white varieties, is naturally gluten free when prepared without gluten-containing ingredients; however, precooked and flavored varieties may contain thickeners made from wheat flour which could present problems for people avoiding gluten due to celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivities.
Also, certain seasoned rice dishes utilize vinegar or soy sauce that contain gluten. When eating out at restaurants, ask if their gluten-free options exist as well as what kind of seasonings have been added to their dish.
Mahatma Rice offers various gluten-free varieties for those needing to restrict gluten intake due to celiac disease or other medical issues. Their processing facilities also test for gluten, making these options even more useful for those needing to do so.
It’s easy to prepare
Rice is naturally gluten free, making it an excellent addition to a healthy diet. As such, it forms the base for many dishes, from South American Arroz con Leche to Asian pilaf. But beware! Precooked and preseasoned mixes often include wheat-based thickeners and flavor enhancers – be sure to read ingredient lists closely! Many brands also add chicken broth which may contain trace amounts of gluten.
Plain minute rice is gluten-free, while its flavored varieties may contain wheat flour or other gluten-containing ingredients. Even when marked “gluten free”, be cautious at buffets due to cross-contamination that occurs when customers use one spoon to scoop both types. Glutinous or sticky Asian style rice does not contain gluten but should still be avoided by individuals who suffer from celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity.
Rice is an affordable staple food for gluten-free eaters. Available at grocery stores in two or five pound bags, rice offers excellent nutrition. Plus, its fiber content keeps digestion functioning optimally while helping people feel full for longer.
Care should be taken when shopping for rice as certain brands may contain gluten, even when labeled gluten-free. In particular, bulk food stores might have cross-contaminated it with other ingredients; therefore, it is crucial that labels are read and bulk foods are avoided from grocery stores.
If you are on a gluten-free diet, be mindful when selecting the broth to cook your rice in. Many brands contain trace amounts of gluten so be sure to read labels before purchasing it. When purchasing pre-cooked rice from the gastronomic section, inquire as to whether it was cooked alongside other gluten-containing foods in one pot.