Do Grits Have Gluten? (& GF Recipe)

Today, we’re going to be answering the question: do grits have gluten? And taking a look at the best gluten-free grits brands and a gluten-free grits recipe you may like to try yourself. Grits are a favorite in the southern parts of the US and it’s not difficult to see why. When I visited the US, they were absolutely delicious!

When following a gluten-free diet, you need to be extremely careful about the foods that you eat. There are grains such as wheat, rye, and barley that contain gluten and must be avoided. However, there are plenty of safe grains to eat, which you can make dishes such as grits. Let’s take a closer look.

What Are Grits?

To put it simply, grits are ground corn. While ground corn in a dish doesn’t sound all that appealing, it’s actually a delicious and creamy dish. It’s most often eaten at breakfast, but adding cheese to this dish means it can be served with virtually any meal. Usually, dent corn is used when making grits – this is because it’s a variety of corn that’s less sweet, but more starchy. It’s essentially porridge that is made using cornmeal, rather than oatmeal.

Ingredients In Grits

Ingredients in grits can differ depending on where you purchase them or how you make them. However, let’s take a look at the ingredients in one of the most famous brands of grits, Quakers.

Quakers Grits contains the following ingredients:

  • Specially processed Degerminated white corn grits
  • Salt
  • Calcium Carbonate
  • Reduced iron
  • Niacin
  • bht and citric acid
  • thiamin mononitrate
  • riboflavin
  • folic acid

Learn more about: Is Quaker Corn Meal Gluten-Free?

Are Grits Gluten Free?

Grits are naturally gluten-free. This is because they’re made using corn, which is a gluten-free grain. However, when it comes to grits, there’s a huge risk of cross-contact. For example, as you can see from the ingredients in Quakers Grits, there are no gluten-containing ingredients. However, there’s a statement on their FAQs that say that they can not claim their grits are gluten-free, as their product may contain traces of gluten. From harvesting to storage, they can come into contact with gluten, as there’s no dedicated area.

Grits Gluten Free Brands

There are many brands of grits that are known to be gluten-free. It’s best to stick with one of the following brands when you’re following a gluten-free diet. Particularly if you’re celiac, or particularly sensitive to gluten.

The following brands are safe:

  • Arrowhead Mills
  • Bob’s Red Mill (Bob’s Red Mill is always my go-to choice!)
  • Julia’s Pantry
  • Medford Farms
  • Sam Mills
  • Palmetto Farms

These brands will clearly be marked as gluten-free and always be sure to check the ingredients label, as ingredients can change at any time.

Gluten Free Grits Recipe

Let’s take a look at this Cheesy Gluten-Free Shrimp and Grits recipe from Eat At Our Table. While grits are delicious on their own, they’re even better with a main-like shrimp. Let’s take a look at the recipe.

Ingredients

The ingredients you’ll need for this recipe are:

Grits

  • 1 cup of grits (corn or rice)
  • 1 cup of gluten-free chicken broth
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese

Shrimp

  • 2 pieces of cut-up bacon
  • 1 pound of shrimp (ready to eat)
  • 2 teaspoons of Cajun seasoning (ensure it’s gluten-free)
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon of butter

Recipe

Grits

  • In a pan, add all of the ingredients for the grits (besides the cheese) and combine
  • Over medium heat, bring to the boil
  • Stir to mix well
  • Move heat to low, and cover and cook for around 20 minutes
  • Remove from the heat. Add the cheese and mix well

Shrimp

  • Zest your lemon until you have around half a teaspoon of zest
  • Grab your Cajun seasoning and lemon and sprinkle over the shrimp. Place it to one side
  • Cook the bacon and leave the leftover oil/grease in the pan
  • Add the shrimp to said pan and on medium heat, cook each side for around 2 minutes
  • Squeeze the juice of the lemon over the shrimp
  • Continue cooking until shrimp are completely cooked
  • Remove the shrimp from the pan and take off the heat. Add the butter to the pan
  • Once melted, add the shrimp and cover well to ensure it’s coated
  • Serve the grits, with the shrimp on top
  • Your gluten-free dish is ready to eat!


Read more about Sausage Gravy With Cornstarch

Conclusion

I hope this article has helped to answer the question: do grits have gluten? And give you an insight into how to make your own gluten-free grits at home. Grits are one of the easier foods to find gluten-free – so we certainly don’t need to miss out on this delicious dish.

Do you know of any other gluten-free brands? Or do you have your own gluten-free grits recipe you’d like to share? If so, please feel free to let me know in the comments below. I love to explore new recipes. Caring is sharing!

FAQs

Do Grits Have Flour?

No, grits are not made using flour. They are made using corn - which is always gluten free. This is why it's very unusual to find that grits that contain any gluten ingredients. However, it's always best to opt for products that carry a gluten free label, so you can be sure there has been no chance of cross contact.

Are Grits Made From Corn or Wheat?

Grits are made from corn, rather than wheat. This is great news for those that follow a gluten free diet, as grits are more often than not, completely free from any gluten! 

Are Grits Inflammatory?

Yes. It's worth noting that grits contain zein, which is part of corn. Zein is a protein that is known to be an inflammatory and can be irritating to your gut. This is why corn can often be a trigger for food intolerances. If you're still experiencing symptoms after removing gluten from your diet, it may be worth checking if you have an intolerance to corn too.