Is Xantham Gum Gluten Free? | Build a Stash

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Key Takeaways

  • Xanthan gum is a popular ingredient in food preparation
  • It’s used as a binder, thickening agent and emulsifier
  • Xanthan gum is gluten-free since it’s made using corn-based sugars
  • People on a gluten-free diet can also opt for xanthan gum substitutes

Xanthan gum is a flavorless and odorless food additive. Many people would want to know if it is gluten free or not.

Xanthan gum is usually considered gluten-free. It’s made from corn-based sugars like lactose, glucose and sucrose. If you have reservations about using xanthan gum, then you can opt for alternatives like chia egg, arrowroot flour, mustard, eggs and tapioca.

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Table of contents


Is Xanthan Gum Gluten-Free?

If you were to check the packaging of any store-bought bread, ice cream or salad dressing, there’s a high possibility that they will contain xanthan gum among the ingredients list.

But what exactly is xanthan gum? Xanthan gum is a flavorless substance used as a food additive. A product of fermentation, it’s mainly used as a stabilizer and thickener for sauces, gravies, and creamy liquids, just to name a few.

It is produced by xanthomonas campestris and can contain a lot of ingredients including baking soda, sugar, and dairy products.

Xanthan gum is primarily made from corn. It’s produced when glucose, lactose and sucrose are fermented by bacteria, resulting in a sticky, gummy substance. The impact of the bacteria ensures that one gets a ready and tasty product.

The gums are then dehydrated and the remaining residue is ground into powder. This is the powder that you will find in a store near you.

You will find xanthan gum in shelf-stable sauces and salad dressings, in baked goods recipe, yogurt, mayonnaise, frozen entrees and soups, just to name a few. Xanthan gum is an ideal product for thickening sauces such as cheese sauce.

On how much xanthan gum can cost, this is an affordable product to use. You might need to use oil in order to ensure that it dissolves evenly and prepare a tasty dish.

Gluten occurs naturally in grains like wheat, barley, rye, spelt, durum and kamut, just to name a few. It acts as a binder in these cereals, helping to hold the grain together. Also, it’s an important component when it comes to baked goods and products.

While gluten plays an important role when it comes to cooking and baking, it’s also known to cause serious complications for some people.

It will trigger a serious autoimmune response and various other undesirable symptoms in people with celiac disease, non-celiac gluten sensitivity and gluten intolerance. Some people experience an allergic reaction to wheat.

Symptoms of gluten problems include bloating, presence of gas in the stomach, and chronic diarrhea. These symptoms, if not checked, do worsen over time. Though it is rare, extreme symptoms of gluten problems can lead to surgery.

People who experience gluten-related complications or undesirable symptoms after eating any gluten-containing product need to abide by a gluten-free diet including gluten free baking and gluten free cakes. There’s no cure for gluten-related complications.

The solution to managing celiac disease will lie in ensuring that one takes gluten free foods such as gluten free bread, gluten free breads, gluten free baked goods, and products made from gluten free flour. If a certain product has gluten, then you must look for a gluten substitute or prepare gluten free recipes at home.

While you can manage the symptoms, avoiding foods and drinks with gluten remains the safest option if you’ve been diagnosed with any gluten-related condition. You have to make taking gluten free products part of your lifestyle in order to avoid harsh symptoms that come with celiac disease.

The gluten free niche is now more dominant and wide. Ohe or she wants, and one will need to simply make a careful search of the market products. Some companies will give you the option of making tailor-made orders.

This brings us to the question; is xanthan gum gluten free? Does xanthan gum have gluten? Is xanthan gum gluten-free? Is xanthan gum safe for individuals on a gluten-free diet? Can you consume products with xanthan gum as an ingredient if you have gluten sensitivity?

Xanthan gum is gluten-free. Xanthan gum is primarily made from corn-based sugar. And corn isn’t a gluten grain. Because xanthan gum is gluten free, it is used in the preparation of many gluten free recipes which will require gluten free dough and gluten free wheat flour.

If you have gluten sensitivity, gluten intolerance, wheat allergy or any other gluten-related complication, then you can consume products with xanthan as an ingredient without experiencing any adverse reactions.

Is Xanthan Gum the Same as Guar Gum?

Some people tend to assume that xanthan gum and guar gum are the same things. But, as much as both are food additives and they work almost the same way, they have some differences.

Xanthan gum is mainly derived from corn-based sugars like glucose, sucrose and lactose. Guar gum, on the other hand, is produced from guar beans, thus the name. Guar beans are mainly grown in India.

Another difference between these two food additives is that xanthan gum gels naturally. Guar gum, on the other hand, will require additional substances like calcium or borax to gel.

Is Xanthan Gum Safe for People with Celiac Disease?

We earlier mentioned that xanthan gum is a common food additive, used as an emulsifier, stabilizer and thickener. If you have celiac disease, you may be wondering whether it’s safe to eat foods with xanthan gum as an additive.

The good news is that xanthan gum is fully safe for individuals with celiac disease. If you’ve been looking to try out a product with xanthan as an ingredient but you’ve been having some reservations, then you can now rest easy.

You can go ahead and try out that product and you shouldn’t experience any gluten-related complications. It’s worth pointing out that gluten cross-contamination is always a risk with food products. Check and ensure the product has been certified gluten-free.

Reliable Substitutes for Xanthan Gum

Xanthan gum is gluten-free and it should be safe for people with gluten sensitivity, gluten allergies and gluten intolerance.

If you have some reservations about using this food additive or you have experienced some complications after consuming a product with this ingredient, then you can simply opt for alternatives and these tips here will help you in your gluten free baking.

Some of the recommended substitutes for xanthan gum in food preparation include tapioca, chia egg, mustard, eggs, and arrowroot flour.

Xanthan gum can also be replaced by chia seeds which form a gel similar to that of the gum. In addition to that, chia seeds are known to be rich in nutrients, and are rich in fiber.

Psyllium husk is derived from the psyllium plant which is then made into a fine powder. This product can be a substitute for xanthan gum and can be used in gluten free foods. It has a similar role to that of xanthan gum and can be used as its substitute for most recipes giving them more elasticity and texture.

Cornstarch is a thickening agent too which can be used in place of xanthan gum.

One should note that baking powder is not a substitute for xanthan gum. This is because xanthan gum, on its own, is not a leavening agent.