Grits are a common Southern breakfast staple. They are typically touted as a comparable dish to oatmeal. However, concerns surround the safety of grits for those following a gluten-free diet.
Grits made consistent with traditional processing are made from ground corn. This means they should classify as gluten-free because corn contains zero gluten. Corn made grits are safe to eat for those with celiac disease or gluten intolerance. However, one crucial element is purchasing grits from a reliable source to avoid the risk of cross contamination.
Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free Corn Grits
Bob's Red Mill produces a celiac-friendly corn grits. This product is manufactured in the company's dedicated gluten-free factory. These grits are certified gluten-free and the only ingredient in the product is gluten-free corn. Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free Corn Grits runs about $4.00 for a 24-ounce bag.
The Sprouted Flour Organic Gluten-Free Yellow Corn Grits
This brand has created a line of gluten-free corn grits that contains only organic yellow corn grits. These grits are produced in a closed facility with dedicated equipment to ensure the product is gluten-free. A 1-pound package package sells for just under $4.00.
Other Grits Brands
Most other brands will naturally be free from gluten and therefore safe for individuals following a gluten-free diet for lifestyle choices. However, these grits brands could be exposed to a higher risk for cross contamination. Some of these brands are:
Some of these brands even have a warning label stating the product may contain wheat, making these unsafe for those with celiac disease.
Although uncommon, flavored grits exist. These products contain a more extensive ingredient list and therefore more room for gluten cross contamination. For example, Quaker makes a variety pack of original, butter, cheddar cheese, and country bacon grits flavors. Although none of the ingredients on this list are gluten-containing, for safety reasons it is best to avoid this product if you have celiac disease.
Grits and Gluten
Grits are naturally gluten-free as they are traditionally made from corn. However, if diagnosed with celiac disease or gluten intolerance, the safest choice is to purchase grits from certified gluten-free companies as stated above. Consult a registered dietitian if you have concerns about the grits you are eating.