Last Updated on January 18, 2022
Today, we’re going to be answering the question: what spices have gluten? And taking a look at some of the best places to buy gluten-free spices. When buying spices, you probably don’t even check the ingredients label – I know I didn’t when I first received my diagnosis.
Spices should be gluten-free, right? That is most definitely not always the case with spices, so you must always be vigilant and check any ingredients label – even if it’s a spice you’re familiar with. Let’s take a look at some of the most common spices that may contain gluten.
Do Spices Have Gluten?
In their purest form, spices will usually not contain gluten. And be considered gluten-free. The gluten protein is found in cereal grains such as wheat, barley, rye, and oats (unless GF oats), and no spices are derived from cereal grains.
However, blends of spices and herbs are far more likely to contain gluten. Gluten is great for holding ingredients together, and for bulking it out too! It also helps to stop the spices clumping. This is why you may see wheat starch or wheat flour on the ingredients label.
Most Common Spices To Include Gluten
While it’s quite rare, gluten is sometimes an ingredient in spices. The most common spices to watch out for gluten are:
- Any blend of spices
- Curry Powder
There’s a chance gluten has been added to prevent the spices from clumping. And there’s also a chance of cross-contact. Cross contact is when a product that does not contain gluten comes into contact with a product that does (this could be due to reasons such as preparation and storage methods etc.), meaning your spice may now contain traces of gluten.
Gluten-Free Spices & Gluten-Free Seasonings
Finding spices and seasonings without gluten can feel daunting – but it’s nowhere near as difficult as you may think. There are plenty of gluten-free spices available for us; you just need to know where to look! So let’s take a look at some of our favorites.
There’s no doubt you’ll be familiar with McCormick. In fact, you’ll likely already have a few of their spices in your pantry. They are the most readily available spices and seasonings in the US. And here’s some good news…they’re almost all gluten-free! There is gluten in some of their spices and seasonings, but they are very transparent with their labeling and it will not be difficult to see on their ingredients labels.
McCormick has also commented that they’re looking to expand their gluten-free range of spices and mixes, so that’s definitely something to keep an eye out for in the future!
Durkee is a spice manufacturer that is home to a host of spices and spice blends. They confirm that all of their single ingredient spices are gluten-free, and are prepared on dedicated equipment which is not shared with any gluten-containing products. However, they do not carry a gluten-free label, so if that’s something you’re not comfortable with, it may be best to try one of our other options.
Some of their blends are also gluten-free. If you have any queries regarding the gluten-free status of a blend – they’re super easy to contact for additional information!
The Spice Hunter
If you’re looking for quality, look no further. The Spice Hunter may be expensive, but they have some unique blends and a great selection of spices. On their FAQs, they state that:
“Our spices and spice blends do not contain gluten. Our Organic Dip & Seasoning Mixes, Turkey Brines, and Global Fusion Rubs are certified gluten-free”.
When a product is certified gluten-free, it means that it’s undergone rigorous testing and met strict guidelines set by the FDA to ensure its gluten-free status. You can find their full range of products here.
While Seasoned Pioneers may be a UK company, they really do strive to make the best free-from spices and seasonings on the market. And it doesn’t just stop with their spices and seasonings…they also offer gluten-free herbs, salts, peppercorns, and chilies too!
The best part about Seasoned Pioneers is that the prices are extremely reasonable. Starting at just £1.50 per bag, you can really stock up your pantry for a fraction of the price. You can find their extensive range available here.
- If you’re unsure of a spice or seasoning label, they’ll usually have a contact number or email – don’t be afraid to get in touch! Most manufacturers are more than happy to help with any queries you have.
- Try to stop in the stores we’ve listed above. These are stores that pride themselves on their transparency and food labeling procedures.
- Avoid bulk bins. It’s tempting to buy from them as they’re so much cheaper, but the risk of cross-contact is far greater than buying anywhere else – so definitely avoid if possible.
- Avoid buying from markets. Although they look fresh (and many likely are), without knowing the ingredients or where they’re from, it’s simply not worth the risk.
It’s worth noting, that even if a spice/seasoning doesn’t carry a gluten-free label, it’s highly unlikely to contain enough gluten to make it unsafe. As the amount of spice you usually use in a meal is small, the ppm would usually be low enough to enjoy safely. The threshold level for people with celiac disease is 10ppm per day, which is the “safe” amount to consume per day.
I hope this article has helped to answer any questions you may have about spices and seasonings. And the easiest way to stock up your pantry – it really couldn’t be easier. When cooking, what’s your go-to spice of choice? Please feel free to let me know any comments or thoughts on this article in the comments below. Sharing is caring!
Read more about: Does Couscous Have Gluten? (And GF Couscous)
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.