An odd and often acquired taste, licorice (or liquorice for anyone from Great Britain) candy really is without comparison. Made from licorice extract, a plant root uncommonly consumed in any other way, this candy is famous for its strange taste and often deep black color.
Is licorice gluten free? No! While your standard black licorice will be gluten containing, you can find brands of gluten free licorice for sale. If you are on a gluten free diet, you may want to avoid the traces of gluten found in the variety of flavors licorice can be found in.
These flavors of the chewy candy include red cherry, and American classics such as Red Vines and Twizzlers. Although sweeter takes on licorice, these icons of the candy industry are not gluten free licorice options, and will upset even the most hardy of celiacs.
Thankfully, the world has come a long way to accomodating different dietary needs. Gluten free licorice recipes can be found all over the internet, using rice flour and condensed milk to save any allergen with a gluten free dairy free snack.
What is Licorice?
Gluten free living can be difficult, which is exactly why its important to know what you’re consuming. Gluten free recipes, as well as most restaurants and eateries having a gluten free option nowadays, does alleviate some of the issues.
When you think of candy, you might think of the grams of sugar involved. For licorice, its the anise flavor more so than the granulated sugar, but actually the main ingredient in licorice is enriched wheat flour. Barley malt containing barley gluten may also be used by the manufacturer.
These flours are used as binding agents to get the rigid yet chewy texture of the licorice. You may also be shocked to learn that, despite being a plant based sweet snack, the herbal flavor of licorice is usually one of many artificial flavors added. They may even add black food coloring!
Are Other Candies Gluten Free?
While Twizzlers and Red Vines aren’t gluten free, what about any other candy food product? Well, for another food product to be wheat products you may have to check for yourself. While you can find lists of gluten free shop products online, you may have to check for cross – contamination.
Chocolate, much like handmade liquorice products, can be gluten free. Or they might not be and contain wheat products. It varies from every manufacturer and their ingredient selections. Dairy free chocolate tends to be without any gluten proteins however.
Dark chocolate bars also often contain less, if any, gluten in them. Although still not the healthiest food in the world, the absence of gel food coloring and artificial flavoring does make chocolate at least more organic than the average licorice.
Is Licorice Vegetarian or Vegan?
Plant based, licorice is totally vegetarian. However, the presence of brands of milk can muddy it on the vegan front. You can still make it yourself, but much like the gluten containing grains or unhealthy additions of high fructose corn syrup you may be better off dodging the food entirely.
Barley malt can be consumed on a vegetarian diet, so you needn’t worry the same way about gluten free foods as someone on a gluten free diet. Instead, you need to concern yourself with the condensed milk often used.
What are Some Gluten Free Licorice Brands?
With any form of flavorings available, you can find licorice perfect for your flavoring of choice. For example, Gimbal’s gluten free licorice. This licorice candy is among the gluten free foods available with certified gluten free oats.
With rice flour on the ingredient list, you can’t go wrong with this if you’re on a gluten free diet. You can also find gluten free red cherry licorice, if you’re really missing those iconic red candies we mentioned before. A gluten free diet doesn’t need to be an unenjoyable one after all!