One of the fruitiest flavors used in everyday baking is vanilla extract.
The gluten status of the delicious baking flavoring ingredient also causes a lot of confusion among many people.
That is why in this article we will get to see if all vanilla extract is gluten-free, what vanilla extract you should avoid, and what you should know about Pure Vanilla Extract.
Why is Vanilla Extract Gluten Free?
Vanilla beans, which are inherently gluten-free, are used to make vanilla extract.
Vanilla beans are mixed with alcohol and water during the manufacturing process to create a vanilla extract.
The flavor gets fuller and less bitter as it steeps for a longer period.
The type of alcohol used is not a concern because the distillation process removes any gluten traces.
Most producers counter that all alcohol made through the distillation process is gluten-free and suitable for celiacs.
Whereas some businesses go above and beyond by employing alcohol made from gluten-free ingredients.
By doing this, they completely rule out the possibility that your vanilla essence contains gluten.
The best-quality brands might be pricey, although some low-quality ones are affordable and widely accessible. So, the answer is yes, pure vanilla extract is free of gluten and is suitable for those on a gluten-free diet.
Are All Kinds of Vanilla Extract Gluten Free?
Since some imitations of vanilla extract contain artificial flavors or caramel color, which some people may consider to be unsafe ingredients because they might include barley malt syrup, you may decide to avoid such products because it is only an imitation of the vanilla extract rather than pure vanilla extract.
However, there are claims that even vanilla extract imitations are gluten-free and include actual vanilla extractives.
For this reason, if you still want to go for such, you should always read the ingredients list and allergen statement on labels to be sure.
What You Should Know About Pure Vanilla Extract
Vanilla, alcohol, and water are the only ingredients in pure vanilla.
Therefore, if a vanilla product’s packaging lists additional ingredients, do not purchase it.
That indicates that rather than using pure vanilla, it has been imitated by adding other flavors and fillers.
Although making pure vanilla may appear straightforward, there are restrictions on what may be called a pure extract.
According to the FDA, there must be at least 13.35 ounces of vanilla pod per gallon of alcohol for pure vanilla extract to be classified as such.
Because of this, pure vanilla is relatively expensive but well worth the cost.
Is Vanilla Extracts Safe for Those with Celiac?
Yes, gluten is naturally absent from pure vanilla extract, making it safe for people with celiac disease and gluten intolerance.
But, before you buy, ensure that the ingredient label for the vanilla extract you’re looking for reads distilled alcohol because non-distilled alcohol may contain gluten.
Some Gluten-free Vanilla Extract Brands
Below are some vanilla brands that are labeled gluten-free and safe for those with gluten intolerance.
1) McCormick Vanilla Extract
Despite always being gluten-free, they recently started labeling their pure vanilla extract as gluten-free.
It is the simplest to find in stores adding that they produce it using distilled alcohol.
2) Native Organic Vanilla Extract
This extract is made from Real Organic Vanilla Beans and has this tantalizingly delicious flavor and aroma. The best part is that it is safe and gluten-free.
3) Simply Organic
Since this brand has many vanilla products, to be on the safe side only, go for their pure vanilla extract that is certified gluten-free.
All Nielsen-Massey vanilla products have received gluten-free certification. Their pure vanilla and flavor extracts are produced using ingredients completely free of gluten.
5) Rodelle Extract
Rodelle vanilla extracts are gluten-free and suitable for those with gluten intolerance. Consider giving it a shot.
6) Singing Dog
This extract is additive- and gluten-free since it is produced with gluten-free distilled alcohol.
You can also find others like Vnlla, Watkins, Beyond Good, Molina, and the Blue Cattle Truck Trading brand.
Always check labels for the most recent product information and allergen information before buying any product, whether it is a vanilla extract or another item, to be on the safer side.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What brand of vanilla extract is gluten free?
Some Vanilla Extract gluten-free brands include Singing Dog, Rodelle Extract, Nielsen-Massey, Simply Organic, Native Organic Vanilla Extract, McCormick, Watkins, Beyond Good, and Molina.
Why does vanilla extract have gluten?
Naturally, vanilla extract is gluten-free but contains gluten only if other gluten-containing flavoring additives are added.