Friday, October 31, 2014

SAFE and UNSAFE Gluten-Free Candies for Halloween 2014 and other sweet times

I found a great list last week of both SAFE and UNSAFE candy for people with celiac disease or gluten intolerance.  (Remember, people with celiac disease must eliminate all foods that contain wheat, barley, rye, and products made from these grains. If they do not strictly avoid gluten-containing foods, long-term malnutrition could result due to damaged villi in the intestines).

But first, there is one rule of thumb to use if you are new to this gluten-free thing: You can’t tell if a food has gluten just by looking. And that means looking at the ingredient list, too. My illustration above of Brach’s candy corn, one of my once-a-year treats for fall, is to show that even though the ingredient list does not list a gluten-containing food, the statement below the ingredient list tells the real story (“This product was manufactured in a facility where milk, eggs, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat and soy are used in the production of other products”).

Here are a few candies that caught my eye (there were way more listed):

SAFE Candy for Celiac and Gluten-Free: 
  • 3 Musketeers fun size
  • Almond Joy fun size
  • Baby Ruth
  • Bit-O-Honey
  • Butterfinger original
  • Haribo Gold-Bears
  • Jelly Belly beans
  • Jolly Rancher hard candy
  • Laffy Taffy
  • Lemonheads
  • M&Ms original
  • Peanut M&Ms
  • Snickers
  • Swedish Fish
  • York Peppermint Patties 

UNSAFE Candy for Celiac and Gluten-Free

  • Anything from Brach’s (candies are manufactured in a facility where wheat-containing candies are made, which means the candy could be cross-contaminated with wheat).
  • Red Vines
  • Trolli Gummi Bears
  • Ferrero Rocher Chocolates
  • Kit Kat
  • Whoppers
  • Twizzlers
  • Milky Way (contains barley malt)
  • Butterfinger Crisp or Stixx (contains wheat flour)

Click Here for the complete list of Yes and No candies for people following a gluten-free diet, compiled by Jefferson Adams at  While you’re at it, you can sign up for their newsletter to find out the latest on gluten-free foods and research.

And spoiler alert (sorry, I have to say this): Even if a candy is gluten-free, it’s still candy! Don’t go wild with it or the calories will come back to haunt you!

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