Last Updated on September 3, 2021
Today, we’re going to be answering the question: are Lay’s potato chips gluten-free? Lay’s are a household favorite and have some of the tastiest potato chips out there. They’re crunchy, flavorful, and the perfect snack. They offer a huge selection of traditional and crazy flavors. But are they safe to eat when following a gluten-free lifestyle? Let’s take a look!
What Are Lay’s Potato Chips?
Lay’s is a brand of potato chips, and they’ve been around since the 1940s! They come in a huge variety of flavors and are extremely popular – and it’s not hard to see why.
It’s important to note that whilst the US calls them Lay’s, other countries have different brand names (UK: Walkers, AUS: Smith’s), and their ingredients and manufacturing methods are not the same. For example, in the UK, no Walkers potato chips are suitable for the celiac lifestyle as they all have a “may contain” label.
Read more about: Do Mashed Potatoes Have Gluten?
Are Lays Chip’s Gluten-Free?
Good news if you live in the US! The majority of flavors are gluten-free and safe to eat. Whilst they aren’t certified gluten-free, Frito Lay have a whole page dedicated to what potato chips are classified as gluten-free. And which products contain no gluten.
The first list we’ll be taking a look at are Lay’s gluten-free potato chips. These are products that have been through testing and confirmed by the FDA to contain less than 20ppm of gluten. The flavors are as follows:
Lays Gluten Free
- Baked Original Potato Crisps
- Baked Sour Cream & Onion Flavor Potato Crisps
- Classic Potato Chips
- Lightly Salted Potato Chips
- Simply Sea Salted Thick Cut Potato Chips
- Bacon & Cheddar Potato Skins STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- Buffalo Wings with Ranch STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- Cheddar STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- Chile Limón STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- Flamas STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- Mesquite Barbecue STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- Original STAX Potato Crisps
- Salt & Vinegar STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- Sour Cream & Onion STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- Wavy Lightly Salted Potato Chips
- Wavy Original Potato Chips
- Baked BBQ Flavor Potato Crisps
The following list of varieties are flavors that contain no gluten ingredients, but they may contain due to manufacturing methods. However, they do state that they clean between production runs. But this isn’t something we can be sure of. You should avoid these if you have celiac disease, or your intolerance is hyper-sensitive. These flavors are:
May Contain Gluten Flavors
- Barbecue Flavor Potato Chips
- Cheddar & Sour Cream Flavor Potato Chips
- Cheddar Jalapeno Flavor Potato Chips
- Chile Limón Flavor Potato Chips
- Dill Pickle Flavor Potato Chips
- Flamin’ Hot Dill Pickle Flavor Potato Chips
- Honey BBQ Flavor Potato Chips
- Extra Extreme Cheddar (Kettle) Flavor Potato Chips
- Extra Honey Habanero (Kettle) Flavor Potato Chips
- Flamin’ Hot (Kettle) Flavor Potato Chips
- Flamin’ Hot Limon (Kettle) Flavor Potato Chips
- Jalapeño (Kettle) Flavor Potato Chips
- Maui Onion (Kettle) Flavor Potato Chips
- Original (Kettle) Potato Chips
- Smoky BBQ (Kettle & Reduced Fat) Flavor Potato Chips
- Jalapeño Cheddar (Kettle & Reduced Fat) Flavor Potato Chips
- Original (Kettle & Reduced Fat) Potato Chips
- Sea Salt & Vinegar (Kettle & Reduced Fat) Flavor Potato Chips
- Sea Salt & Cracked Pepper (Kettle) Flavor Potato Chips
- Salt & Vinegar (Kettle) Flavor Potato Chips
- Limón Flavor Potato Chips
- Honey BBQ (Poppables) Flavor Potato Snacks
- Sea Salt (Poppables) Potato Snacks
- Sea Salt & Vinegar (Poppables) Flavor Potato Snacks
- Southwest Ranch (Poppables) Flavor Potato Snacks
- White Cheddar (Poppables) Flavor Potato Snacks
- Salt & Vinegar Flavor Potato Chips
- Sour Cream & Onion Flavor Potato Chips
- Flamas Xtreme STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- Queso STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- Salted STAX Potato Crisps
- Spicy Chile Limon STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- Tangy Limon STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- XTRA Flamin’ Hot STAX Flavor Potato Crisps
- Sweet Southern Heat BBQ Flavor Potato Chips
- Wavy Hickory BBQ Flavor Potato Chips
- Wavy Ranch Flavor Potato Chips
I know those lists may seem overwhelming, however, all of their products will display a “may contain” label if their has been any chance of cross-contact. Which certainly makes things easier for us!
Are All Flavors Gluten-Free?
The main ingredients are potato, vegetable oil, and salt. However, the lists above may seem extensive but there are quite a few varieties that are not on either list. This is because there are some flavors that do contain gluten in the ingredients. For example, the Kettle Mesquite BBQ flavor contain barley malt, which is not safe for us. Therefore, you should always check the label before consumption.
Also, frustratingly, ingredients can change. As can manufacturing methods. So try to get into the habit of checking everything you buy, just to be safe. I’ve been caught out before with ingredients changing but the packaging seemingly looking the same!
It’s also important to bear in mind that if you have celiac disease or are severely intolerant to gluten, you may not be able to tolerate even the “gluten-free” flavors. Whilst they can legally be classified as “gluten-free” if they contain less than 20ppm of gluten – if you are super sensitive, this may still present a problem.
To conclude, Lay’s potato chips and predominantly gluten-free – hurrah! As they’re one of the most popular brands, this should be music to your ears (it is to mine). I hope this article has helped you to realize how many flavors we have on offer and how great Lay’s are for making their products inclusive. Hopefully, in the future, they can be certified and supply us with even more gluten-free goodness.
And please remember, wherever you are in the world, this article may not be accurate. Every country is different and it’s important to keep that in mind.
Do you like Lay’s potato chips? What’s your favorite flavor? I’d love to know – mine is definitely BBQ. I love anything BBQ flavored!
I would also like to know what your experiences have been with Lay’s since your diagnosis. Whether good or bad, feel free to share your experiences in the comments below.
Hi, my name’s Zoë. I’m 28 years old and live in London, UK. I work full time as a freelance writer and critic for West End theatre. Writing has been a passion of mine for as long as I can remember. I spend most of my free time at the theatre, or at conventions. I’m married to the love of my life, and live in a small apartment with my fur baby, Lillie. I run two of my own blogs: No Safer Place and Stage to Page: both of which have won awards. I also have a YouTube channel where I talk about all things stagey.