Can I Have Basmati Rice On A Gluten Free Diet?
Rice is a staple food to have with meals, but those who suffer from gluten intolerance need to be careful with rice meals since some can contain gluten, but what about basmati rice, is it gluten-free?
Basmatic rice and rice, in general, are typically gluten-free, gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye, and rice does not contain this.
We’ve composed a short guide below which will take you through which kinds of rice are gluten free, which aren’t, how to be safe from contamination and rice dishes which have gluten.
Which Types Of Rice Are Gluten Free?
Nearly all kinds of rice are gluten-free as long as it is plain rice, not mixed with any other ingredients, rice typically comes in the following varieties; short grain, medium grain, long grain, wholegrain and refined and is classed as vegan. You can learn more here Is Rice Vegan?
Do you think Is Rice A Vegetable? I know it sounds funny but Read this article to learn more.
We’ve listed the main types of rice below along with a short explanation of which each type is.
- Sweet rice – This is a short chalky white rice, as it cooks it becomes very sweet and the rice does not hold its shape.
- Jasmine rice – Jasmine rice becomes quite soft and sticky when cooked and is very fragrant too.
- Basmati rice – Basmati rice is a fragrant rice which separates when cooked, the fragrant long-grain rice comes in both brown and white varieties, with the brown version being slightly higher in fibre.
- Aborio rice – This rice is mostly used for risottos and puddings it has a lot of starch since it is not milled like regular rice. The rice comes in both brown and white forms of rice and releases starch when cooked which is what gives it its creamy texture.
- Red/purple rice – Coming in both short and medium styles, red and purple rice gets its colour from something called anthocyanins which is a phytochemical.
- Glutinous rice – Despite the name, glutinous rice does not contain any gluten, it’s just simply a name for the sticky texture this rice has once cooked.
Which Kind Of Rice Is Not Gluten Free?
All kinds of rice are typically gluten-free, however, whenever there are added ingredients there is a risk of gluten in rice.
We would consider the following kinds of rice as potentially containing gluten; Rice Krispies cereal, rice pilaf, seasoned packaged rice, rice with added sauce like soy sauce and rice cooked with any kind of sauce.
Read more here Are Rice Krispies Vegan?
Risk Of Rice And Cross Contamination
The biggest problem of rice and gluten is cross-contamination, those who are sensitive to gluten need to be careful and consider the following when consuming all forms of rice.
- Do not buy rice from bulk bins.
- Always check the gluten on food labels for a risk of gluten.
- Call ahead to restaurants to check gluten-free options.
- Always ask for plain rice with no added seasonings when eating out, additional ingredients can have gluten.
- Call the food manufacturer to double-check if a certain rice has gluten.
Types Of Rice Dishes With Gluten
Now we know that plain rice is gluten-free, you also need to consider popular rice dishes since a prepared rice dish is much more likely to contain gluten inside.
We’ve listed the main types of rice dishes which are not gluten-free below.
- Some boiled rice – You need to be careful if the rice has been boiled in the same pots as pasta since there is a risk of cross-contamination.
- Instant preseasons rice mixes – Instant rice mixes often contain gluten based ingredients such as hydrolyzed wheat protein and other flavourings like regular soy sauce. Some rice mixes can also contain a mix of grains.
- Sushi rice – Sushi rice is most of the time not gluten-free due to the following reasons; this rice often contains wheat vinegar which is not gluten-free, soy sauce, imitation crab meat which contains wheat and starches and tempura sushi which is often deep-fried containing wheat flour. Do you think Rice Flour Gluten Free? Check it out here.
- Cuban rice, risotto, paella – Paella rice and Cuban rice can often be cooked in stock which can sometimes contain wheat making it not gluten-free, same goes for fried rice dishes.
- Buffet rice dishes – You need to be careful when eating buffet rice dishes since they can often contain gluten due to cross-contamination, with a mix of people using different utensils to scoop the rice.
Is Basmati Rice Good For You?
Basmati rice is very good for you and is also known as super grain rice, it contains eight essential amino acids plus whole-grain brown rice is also high in fibre and can even lower cholesterol.
This type of rice also has a low glycemic index which means it releases energy slowly throughout the day.
Frequently Asked Questions About Basmati Rice & Gluten
Is arborio rice gluten-free?
Yes, Arborio rice is the base of risotto and is naturally gluten-free, just be careful about any extra ingredients added to this dish.
How much fibre does brown basmati rice have?
Brown basmati rice has on average 2.2g of fibre for a 100g portion making it a good choice over white rice has 20% more fibre.
Is yellow-seasoned rice gluten free?
Yellow seasoned rice is typically not gluten free since it is seasoned and cooked in stock which contain wheat.
Are rice puddings gluten free?
Yes, most rice pudding is gluten free naturally, just double check that flavoured rice puddings are gluten free.
To conclude, basmati rice is gluten free as long as it is plain rice, be careful if this rice is cooked in any flavourings or stock this can add wheat into the rice which would make it non-gluten friendly.
A wide variety of rice dishes such as sushi rice and pilaf (see our pilaf rice guide here) can also contain gluten, always be cautious of cross contamination when eating at restaurants or buffet which are not suitable for a strict gluten-free diet.