- When powdered sugar is processed naturally, it is gluten-free
- There are different ways in which gluten can be present in powdered sugar
- Gluten-free powdered sugar is safe for individuals having celiac disease
- Check the powdered sugar label for any gluten information before you buy
- It is possible to make a homemade powdered sugar
Powdered sugar is a popular core ingredient in making icing. Consumers would like to know whether it is gluten-free or not.
Powdered sugar is gluten-free when it is manufactured purely. Certain brands put additives or preservatives that may contain gluten. There is a risk of cross-contamination in some brands, especially when they share their facilities in manufacturing powdered sugar with other products.
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Is Powdered Sugar Gluten free?
Powdered sugar, otherwise known as icing sugar or confectioner’s sugar, is an ideal product that is very important in baking. When this very fine powder is combined with cornstarch, it is important in preventing the formation of large clumps during baking.
Consumption of gluten has become a big problem in the modern American diet. Many foods are made from grains such as wheat flour which contain gluten. This causes gluten problems such as celiac disease. Others complain of gluten intolerance and wheat allergy.
Whereas there is ample research made on gluten, there is no cure yet on gluten problems. The only solution is to avoid gluten foods.
This is through checking the labeling of food, asking the doctor,asking the manufacturer, and reading gluten resources from reputable resources such as the FDA.
Is powdered sugar gluten free? Is it naturally gluten free? If you are a beginner or follower of the gluten-free diet, one of the main things to do is to carefully examine each ingredient you eat or use in baking.
This is because ingredients containing gluten will either harm you or interfere with your goal of eliminating gluten. You must make a deliberate effort to avoid gluten containing ingredients. This has to be a part of your diet, and in some cases, this can be a lifetime commitment.
Individuals, especially those with gluten sensitivities and celiac disease, must be more cautious because consuming gluten may negatively impact their bodies and health. The effect on gluten on small intestines could deteriorate, something that will not be easy to reverse.
Powdered sugar typically is gluten-free since it does not contain any components that have gluten.
If the sugar is refined correctly without adding flavorings, preservatives, or chemicals that may contain gluten, it is safe for individuals with gluten allergies, sensitivities, or celiac disease.
Even though most brands are cautious in ensuring their powdered sugar is gluten-free, some still need to reach the gluten standard required. It is always good to check reliable sources on the amount of gluten in a product.
Gluten could be present in powdered sugar in the following ways:
Addition of Starch
Powdered sugar has an absorption property that makes its powder clump together when it absorbs moisture due to its small particle size. Some brands tend to add starch to minimize moisture absorption rate.
Corn starch could contain corn gluten in them, thus making them unsafe for individuals with celiac disease. Before you buy powdered sugar from different brands, ensure it does not contain starch.
Wheat starch may be used instead of cornstarch though.
Through Cross Contamination
Some brands manufacture more than one product using their facilities. Therefore, when the brand makes powdered sugar with other related products that may contain gluten but do not clean the facilities and equipment, the powdered sugar will contain gluten.
Sharing of equipment is a common thing due to the high cost of purchasing such equipment. During food processing, some foods come into contact with gluten.
Since it may be impossible to avoid gluten, regulatory bodies such as the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) have set gluten-level standards which are safe for every person regardless of their dietary needs.
This body will certify products with less than 20 parts per million of gluten level. As a result, you should check for any certifications in the product before you buy it.
Is it safe to buy powdered sugar from stores?
Buying powdered sugar from stores is unsafe, especially if you suffer from any gluten problem or celiac disease.
This is because most stores share their bins selling powdered sugar with other products that may contain gluten.
Even though stored bough powdered sugar is affordable, it poses a high risk for individuals following a gluten-free diet.
Brands Trusted to make Gluten free Powdered Sugar
Since not all brands make gluten-free powdered sugar, it will require you to know the brands that are certified and are known to cause gluten-free powdered sugar.
The following are some of the brands known to cause gluten-free powdered sugar:
Wholesome Powdered Sugar
Wholesome Organic powdered sugar is a brand known to make powdered gluten-free powdered sugar..
Since powdered sugar easily clumps due to moisture absorption, the brand adds tapioca starch, which is gluten-free, to reduce the rate of moisture absorption.
To give the sugar more flavor, the brand adds natural molasses that gives the product a coffee-like taste when making the icing.
According to the brand's website, its powdered sugar is tested to be gluten-free and free from pesticides, herbicides, and other harmful chemicals.
Wholesome organic powdered sugar is found in malls or online via Walmart or Amazon.
HEB Powdered Sugar
The HEB is a popular and trusted brand that processes powdered sugar using organic sugar cane and tapioca starch as the main ingredients.
Besides powdered sugar lacking gluten, the brand's powdered sugar is certified GMO-free, 100% organic, and free from chemicals such as herbicides and pesticides.
The HEB powdered sugar is adaptable to various kinds of baking goods, and you can use it to make icing or as a sugar substitute in baking.
According to the HEB official website, all their powder sugar varieties are entirely gluten-free.
The brand advises their consumers to check the ingredient information directly on the product’s label because the website information may differ from the one on the product.
Since HEB powdered sugar is popular, it is available in supermarkets and online through Instacart or HEB's official website.
Aldi powdered sugar
Aldi is a popular company that makes gluten-free powdered sugar using natural ingredients.
According to the company’s website, they add tapioca starch to help the sugar not to absorb moisture from the environment.
Aldi powdered sugar is found in different supermarkets, or if you wish to order it online, you can use platforms like Walmart and Instacart, and the product will be delivered to you.
Can you prepare Powdered Sugar at Home?
Making products at home is not only fun, but it can save you a lot of food expenses. You are going to prepare the food you want, the way you want it. For example, if you have gluten problems, you will avoid gluten ingredients.
If you are still in doubt about buying powdered sugar from different brands, making your powdered sugar at home is possible since the ingredients needed are affordable and accessible.
As discussed earlier, most powdered sugar brands could be contaminated with gluten.
To prepare homemade powdered sugar, you must have cornstarch and granulated sugar.
Ideally, the ideal ratio is one cup of granulated sugar to one spoonful of cornstarch. Place the mixture into a blender.
The quality of the powdered sugar will depend on your blender's strength. The higher the strength and grinding speed, the finer the powdered sugar particles.
About THE AUTHOR
I have over a decade of experience in food and beverage management, including a ServSafe food safety qualification. As part of this qualification, I have been professionally trained in safe food storage.Read More About Mark Walker