Last Updated on January 18, 2022
Today, we’re going to be answering the question: do taco shells have gluten? And looking at some of the most popular taco shell brands and confirming whether they contain any gluten or not. But first, let’s take a look at the most common ingredients in taco shells.
What Are Taco Shells?
Taco shells come in two varieties: hard shell tacos and soft shell tacos. Today, we’ll be mainly looking at hard shell tacos – these crispy delights are one of my favorite foods to eat. The taco is a Mexican dish that was then developed further in the US and has since been enjoyed all around the world.
You can fill tacos with anything of your choosing, but the most common fillings are meat, cheese, and vegetables – I love a beef brisket taco myself!
Ingredients In Taco Shells
There’s usually the only main ingredient in hard shell tacos – and that’s corn! That’s right, taco shells are made from corn tortillas.
Do Taco Shells Have Gluten?
Traditionally, taco shells should not contain any gluten. While corn is a grain, it is not a cereal grain such as wheat, rye, barley, and oats (unless GF oats), which means corn is safe to eat. However, it’s very common to have problems with corn if you have problems with gluten, so if gluten-like symptoms persist when eating corn, it may be best to remove it from your diet.
While corn is naturally gluten-free and there aren’t usually any hidden ingredients in taco shells, cross-contact can be a risk. Cross contact is when a food product does not contain any gluten ingredients, but due to methods such as packaging and storage, it may have come into contact with gluten. This is why it’s best to always opt for products that make “gluten-free” claims or are certified gluten-free.
Most hard taco shells you’ll come across in your local grocery store will contain no gluten. But it’s always best to check the ingredients, as they’re subject to change at any time.
Learn more about: Mission Gluten-Free Tortilla Ingredients
Are Old El Paso Taco Shells Gluten-Free?
When you think of Mexican food at home, the brand that will first come to mind is Old El Paso. Old El Paso is a tex-mex brand that offers a huge selection of Mexican-style food. Their hard taco shells are one of their best-sellers and I have some good news for you – they’re gluten-free!
It’s important to note that this information is only relevant to people who live in the US. For example, in the UK, the Old El Paso Hard Taco Shells are not suitable for gluten-free life, as they carry a “may contain gluten” label.
However, if you’re living in the US, you can enjoy their hard taco shells, as they carry a gluten-free label. The only ingredients you’ll find in this product is:
- Limed Whole Grain Corn
- Palm Oil
- TBHQ (preservative)
You can find their crunchy taco shells here.
Hard Taco Shell Nutrition Information
If you’re looking for the nutritional information of the Old El Paso Crunchy Taco Shells, here’s all the information you’ll need.
- Energy: 66kcal
- Fat: 3.5g
of which saturates: 0.3g
- Carbohydrate: 7.7g
of which sugars: 0.1g
- Fiber: 0.5g
- Protein: 0.7g
- Salt: 0.01g
Gluten-Free Taco Shell Brands
If you’re looking for a list of gluten-free taco shell brands, look no further! We’ve got several options to take a look at today.
Casa Fiesta may only offer one gluten-free option, but they certainly pack a crunch. What’s great about this brand is that they’re not just gluten-free, but also kosher verified and non-GMO, meaning they’re suitable for a range of dietary lifestyles.
They carry a gluten-free label, and contain the following ingredients:
- stone ground cornflour
- coconut/soybean oil
- folic acid
You can find the Casa Fiesta Taco Shells here.
Old El Paso
We’ve already taken a brief look at Old El Paso, but their gluten-free taco shells don’t just stop there. They offer quite a large selection of gluten-free tacos, as well as other gluten-free foods such as tortilla chips and tortillas. Their gluten-free taco shells include:
- Crunchy Taco Shells
- Crunchy White Corn Shells
- Super Stuffer Taco Shells
- Stand n’ Stuff Taco Shells
- Ranch Stand n’ Stuff Taco Shells (Bold)
- Spicy Cheddar Stand n’ Stuff Taco Shells (Bold)
- Nacho Cheese Stand n’ Stuff Taco Shells (Bold)
- Stand n’ Stuff Taco Shells (Hint of Lime)
- Tostada Shells
Mission has a few gluten-free options, but it’s important to note that like Old El Paso, they do not just supply gluten-free products, so be sure you’re purchasing the correct product, and be sure to check the ingredients label before you buy, as ingredients can change at any time.
The gluten free taco shells available at Mission are:
- Baked Tostadas
- Yellow Tostadas Casero
- Yellow Tostados Nortena
- Red Tostados Nortena
Garden Of Eatin’
Garden of Eatin’ is a great brand that makes certified gluten-free products. When a product is certified gluten-free, it’s individually tested for gluten and must meet strict guidelines set by the FDA before it can hit the shelves – so these products are as safe as possible.
Not only are they gluten-free, but they’re also organic and non-GMO too – making them suitable for a range of dietary lifestyles. Their gluten-free option includes:
- Blue Taco Shells
- Yellow Taco Shells
I hope this article has helped to answer the question: do taco shells have gluten? And helped you to become more familiar with the plethora of gluten-free taco shells available. And this list is by no means extensive, so feel free to add brands that you think are worthy of adding to the list.
Do you enjoy taco shells? What’s your favorite gluten-free taco shell? Please let me know in the comments below – sharing is caring!
Read more about Are Pupusas Gluten-Free? (GF Recipes)
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.