We tried and tested more than 70 popular foods that normally contain gluten, including breads, pastries, cereal and sausages. We were looking for an appealing texture and appearance, as well as value for money and of course, a great taste. Here’s what we discovered…
The best gluten-free breads
M&S Made Without Wheat brown seeded loaf
This loaf had the best texture of all those tested, plus a lovely natural toasted flavour from the added seeds. Caroline liked the nice bounce the bread had. £3, from M&S
BFree multigrain wraps
These wraps are thin – but won’t tear or break. They’re made from potato and corn starch, as well as flours from rice, quinoa, millet, teff and buckwheat. £3.50 for six, from Tesco
M&S Made without wheat pizza bases
These stone-baked bases make a thin and crispy pizza – and have lots of their own flavour. They’re made with olive oil and are well-seasoned with salt. £3.60 for two, from M&S
The best gluten-free biscuits
Tesco triple choc cookies
Because this cookie is so laden with chocolate, you don’t miss the gluten! It’s crumbly and packed with white chocolate chunks. £1.80, from Tesco
Walkers gluten-free shortbread rounds
Rice flour works well in these biscuits – giving them the distinctive ‘short’, buttery texture. The ingredients list is reassuringly brief, as well. £2.90, from Walkers Shortbread
Morrisons Free From milk chocolate digestives
These are made from gluten-free oat flour, which gives a fantastic crisp but crumbly texture – with no graininess. We loved them. £1.20, from Morrisons
The best gluten-free cakes
Mrs Crimbles gluten-free Bakewell slices
Extremely moist, these little slices have a lovely texture and hold together well. The perfect treat to go with a cup of tea. £1.30, from Sainsbury’s
M&S Made Without Wheat blueberry muffins
Light, buttery and generously specked with fruit – what more could you want! This was a standout favourite of everything we tried today. Caroline described these as a revelation! £2.40 for two, from M&S
The best gluten-free ingredients
Tesco gluten-free penne pasta
There wasn’t a huge amount of variation in this category, and gluten-free penne can be either gluey or too hard. This one is made from potato starch and cooks to a good al dente texture. £1.14, from Tesco
Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference pork and herb sausages
Packed with flavour, these are a great choice whether you are coeliac or not. The meat is juicy and we like the coarse texture, and Caroline commended the herby flavours. £3, from Sainsbury’s
Heck 97% Pork sausages
The pork is finely ground, creating a solid, no-frills sausage, which tastes delicious. They’re made from lean pork shoulder, but are still very juicy. Caroline called them the perfect breakfast sausage. £3, from Tesco
This review was last updated in October 2018. If you have any questions, suggestions for future reviews or spot anything that has changed in price or availability, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Caroline’s tips for following a coeliac diet..
For anyone who has been recently diagnosed coeliac, my first advice is to read labels on food really carefully – gluten is hidden in lots of places that you wouldn’t expect to find it!
You can compensate for gluten in other ways – for instance, I do miss pasta, but what I do now is look for a really great sauce recipe, with masses of bite, like something with lots of chunky veg in it.
People can think that coeliac disease is a synonym for fussy eater but it isn’t – it’s an autoimmune disease. A tiny amount of gluten (the size of a grain of rice) makes me terribly unwell so accidental ‘poisoning’ in restaurants or at work can be a nightmare. At home we’ve adapted an entirely gluten-free kitchen so cross-contamination doesn’t occur.
To read more about coeliac disease, visit the Coeliac UK website.