For those having a wheat allergy or celiac disease finding baked goods that not only taste good but are safe to consume is no easy task. Many of our best baking processes have been developed over hundreds of years and sometimes modern efforts to replace wheat or flour in the baking process leads to less than stellar results.
A true gluten free bakery is dedicated to producing products that are safe to consume for those with these dietary restrictions or sensitivity. This means that ONLY gluten free products will be produced in that facility ? and that flour, wheat or other allergen causing products should not be allowed on site.
Many of us have learned how important these safeguards are as sometimes mistakes are made with food processing, handling or preparation by people or businesses with the best of intentions.
* What are the signs of a truly “gluten free” bakery:
* No gluten, wheat, flours or other allergens allowed on site
* Tested and safe gluten alternatives are used in the baking process.
* Dishes, bowls and mixing utensils have not been used to prepare products which may have gluten, wheat or similar products in them.
* Cooking sheets and surfaces are used exclusively for gluten free baking
* Health information, ingredients and labels are clearly visible
* No gluten or wheat based products are produced in that facility
* Employees can answer any questions about ingredients or the baking process.
What do you mean “cross contamination”?
Using these standards may require you to look elsewhere for baked goods but for good reason. Cross contamination is a very real danger to those with gluten diet restrictions ? and not just from those who don?t know better. “Cross contamination” can occur from using utensils, dishes or pots that have cooked products with gluten, mistakes in product handling and lack of knowledge when choosing ingredients.
The fact is that gluten and wheat are in so many everyday products that we consume. And while many bakeries would love to sell you products they think are gluten free ? if it is not a dedicated gluten free bakery there is always the risk that allergens may make their way into your food. And unfortunately the consequences can be serious for those who should not consume any gluten in their diets.
Gluten Free Bakeries Provide Health and Safe Food Choices
So next time you are shopping for something gluten free like muffins, breads or cakes that don’t taste like cardboard ? look carefully to see if what you are buying was made in a gluten free bakery. Generally speaking those products will be safe to consume and will probably taste better as the owners are most likely fanatics about maintaining a gluten free facility.
And if you are struggling to find a good selection of palatable goods at your traditional local retailer we recommend that you go online, shop and have products shipped fresh right to your door. There is a great selection of online retailers that offer a variety of delicious items including muffins, pizza, breads, brownies and other delicious goods baked with alternative ingredients. Some online stores will even allow you to leave comments or reviews in posts on the site.
Generally speaking gluten free products and especially baked goods are steadily improving. In addition to improved flavor and product categories, they also now feature improved nutrition and increased use of organic products that can satisfy those who have casein or sugar diet restrictions.