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Meats And Cheese
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We are just starting our daughter on the gluten free diet. We have lots of questions.

Are meats in the deli off limits? Or bags of chicken at Sams club? What's good and what's bad?

What brands of cheese are gluten-free? We need a sharp chedder, slices and parm.

Are there any other good websites with lists of acceptable foods and recipes?

Thanks for the help!

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Welcome to the board!

Many processed meats (ones with sices and stuff added) can contain gluten, so you'd have to be very careful. It may not be clearly listed on the label either. Plain meats like ground beef, turkey, etc are supposed to be safe from a gluten standpoint. As for cheese, there a few which can contain gluten, such as blue cheese, but I'm not familiar with all the names. You can look it up, and I'm sure other members will reply with some names too. I don't think the ones you've asked about are usually a concern, but if flavored them perhaps.

Here's a great place to start (in case you haven't already):

http://www.celiac.com/st_main.html

I hope you and your child find the answers and relief you need.

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Kraft cheese is reliable -- if there is anything in it it will be on the ingredient list. White cheeses are safe -- just watch out for additional flavorings and for what they use as an anti-caking on slices. Most now say cellulose or potato starch (both safe). Modified food starch is _supposed_ to be safe with new labeling laws, I'm waiting another year till I trust they know what they're doing.

I use Oscar Meyer shaved turkey breast from the packaged lunch meat section. Folks who have a relationship with their deli crew and trust them to clean the machine and who know which deli counter meats are safe sue the in-store deli. I don't. Hormel lists their gluten-free stuff here: http://www.hormel.com/faq/faqList.asp?catitemid=41, and Oscar Mayer here: http://www.penny.ca/Oscar.htm

just google the brand and "gluten"

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We are just starting our daughter on the gluten free diet. We have lots of questions.

Are meats in the deli off limits? Or bags of chicken at Sams club? What's good and what's bad?

What brands of cheese are gluten-free? We need a sharp chedder, slices and parm.

Are there any other good websites with lists of acceptable foods and recipes?

Thanks for the help!

Dear Chancer7,

I have a list that should really help. This is overwhelming. I went through this with myself six months ago. You spend most of your day cooking and cleaning obsessively. The rest you are on the phone with reps from companies trying to find out what is safe. I decided to save you the trouble!

1. There are a number of things in the regular grocery that are safe. Some things are labeled already. Wal-Mart's Great Value brand has numerous things you can eat.

2. For the love of God use Coupons on items you are allowed to eat. People can get them and print them out online even. Call some of the local stores and ask if they accept online coupons.

3. Check the ads online and in the newspaper. You would be surprised how many people do not do this.

4. Some items like rice flour and rice noodles are safe to buy at the Chinese or oriental market. The merchants are more than happy to help you if you cannot read the label.

Now, here is my list of great things to get you started:

Condiments:

Smart Balance Margerine

Crisco Shortening

Crisco Oil

Pompeiian Olive Oil

Great Value soy sauce

Heinz Ketchup

Lea & Perrins Worchestershire Sauce

Sweet Baby Ray's Barbecue Sauce

Kraft French Fat-Free Salad Dressing

Kraft Thousand Island Fat-Free Salad Dressing

Pace Picante Sauce

Ortega Salsa

All Classico Red and White sauces

All Jif Peanut Butters including Smooth Sensations

Welch's Grape Jelly

Cool Whip

Philadelphia Cream Cheese

Miracle Whip

Daisy Sour Cream (fat-free, low-fat, regular)

Snack Foods:

Fritos

Tostitos

Lay's Original Potato Chips

Cool Ranch Doritos (Nacho cheese has gluten)

Act II Microwave Popcorn

Cheetos

3 Musketeers candy bars

Butterfinger candy bars

Reese's Peanut Butter Cups

Meat and Protein :

Eggs

Great Value Frozen Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts

Extra Lean ground beef

Carl Buddig lunchmeats all are safe

Johnsonville Original Bratwursts

Kraft Cheese Shredded or sliced (Kraft is a great company, they never hide gluten in their labels. If it does not say wheat, barley, oats or rye, then it is not in there!)

Cereals:

Cocoa Pebbles

Fruity Pebbles

Dora The Explorer Cinnamon Stars

Seasonings:

Durkee Cinnamon-ground

Durkee Ginger-ground

Durkee Chili powder

Durkee Vanilla Extract (in fact, all of their liquid flavorings, food colorings, and extracts are g.f.)

Emeril's Essence - Asian, Italian

Ortega Taco Seasoning (In fact, since they are under a very strict labeling policy, all of their products are gluten free at this time)

Miscellaneous:

Ortega Taco Shells

Starkist or Great Value Tuna

Butter Buds

Great Value Soy Milk

Lettuce

Tomatoes

Apples

Pears

Carrots

Great Value Canned Fruits and Vegetables

Del Monte Canned Fruits and Vegetables

Ore Ida Tater Tots

Ore Ida French Fries

Hormel Chili

Hormel Spam

Hormel Turkey Spam (Oven Roasted and Smoked)

Hormel Beef Au Jus Entree

Hormel Pork Au Jus Entree

Jimmy Dean Fresh Taste Fast Sausage (links, rolls, and patties)

Plumrose Bacon

PAM Non-Stick Cooking Spray (all except for PAM for baking; it has flour)

Beverages:

Coca-Cola (Diet, Regular, Vanilla, Caffeine Free)

Diet Rite

Folgers Coffees (all including Cappuccinos)

Luzianne Tea (We get decaf)

Arizona Teas

Ocean Spray Cranberry Juice

Some Household Items that are safe include:

Cascade Dishwashing Detergent

All Laundry Detergent

Wisk Laundry Detergent

Dawn Dish Soap (all including the Power Disolver)

SoftSoap Hand Soaps

Murphy's Oil Soap

Hygiene, Cosmetics, and Beauty Items:

Dove Soaps, Shampoos, Conditioners, Lotions, and Styling Aids (Will clearly label gluten if present)

Crest Whitening Expressions Toothpastes

Colgate Toothpastes

Suave Soaps, Shampoos, Conditioners, Lotions, and Styling Aids (Will clearly label gluten if present)

Maybelline (Gluten is clearly labeled when present)

CoverGirl (Gluten is clearly labeled when present)

Wet'n Wild (All except for one of the mascaras)

Olay Quench Body Lotion

Crest WhiteStrips

Colgate Simply White

I hope this helps a bit!

Sincerely,

NoGluGirl

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We are just starting our daughter on the gluten free diet. We have lots of questions.

Are meats in the deli off limits? Or bags of chicken at Sams club? What's good and what's bad?

What brands of cheese are gluten-free? We need a sharp chedder, slices and parm.

Are there any other good websites with lists of acceptable foods and recipes?

Thanks for the help!

You will need to address each food item individually. No one can give you an answer that will cover all meats in the deli dept. Not even a statement such as "cheddar cheese is gluten free" is accurate 100% of the time. Each brand of Cheddar Cheese needs to be looked at. Each deli counter needs to have a worker who hears you when you request the slicer be wiped down in order to remove gluten from previous orders.

Boars Head deli meats and cheeses are all gluten free.

Make a list of your child's favorite foods, go on the internet to the various sites and look up the gluten information at the sites. Call the 1800 numbers when necessary. Email the question to the company under the "Contact us" option. This has two benefits: One, you find the answer you need. Two, the company hears that folks need to know about gluten. This is what happened at Boars Head. They had so many inquiries into the gluten content of their product that they finally decided it was worth addressing. You will find the words, "gluten free" on all Boars Head products. Now, I do not eat their products as they contain NITRATES which are very bad for you, but it is an example of how simply questioning gluten can make changes happen.

AppleGate Farms cold cuts are nitrate free, dairy free, casein free, horomone free, antibiotic free... and they still taste great! I mention them only in the hopes that you would consider their products over other nitrate laden ones.

Since food products change ingredients so frequently, there is no one on line source for gluten free foods. Many food manufactureres will change and add ingredients due to cost cutting. Wheat may be cheaper and increase their profits. Malt may suddenly be added. It is up to the gluten free person to check diligently, each product they purchase. Check it each time, unless it is a sold as a specific gluten free food.

You may want to use kinnikinnick.com for ordering bread products. I like them, though I have other favorites such as Glutino. I can find that quite easily where I live.

Nogluegirl's list is amazing. It was very thoughtful of her to take the time to write all that down. I would tell you to exercise caution with each product and to read the label even though it may seem like over-kill. It is always possible for a food company that is not specifically selling a "gluten free" product to change it's ingredients with no warning to the celiac community.

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.....Are meats in the deli off limits? .....

C7, Darn that's a good question. I never thought about it really, although I rarely buy deli stuff. Usually I get packaged meats and cheeses. If it doesn't say "wheat" or "malt" on the package, I don't worry about it (hasn't happened yet). That's just me though, some people have reactions from sulfites, sulfates, etc. I guess I'm just lucky, 'cause those preservatives keep the meat from going bad right away. I have a brother in law that gets migraines from that stuff, he's not celiac, but he shouldn't eat hot dogs, bologna etc. (but does sometimes anyway).

I do get some nice rare roast beef sometimes from the deli at Central Market (think Whole Foods to the next level x2), or some imported salami from Itay or Spain (very expensive but unbelievably good) but I never gave it a thought. Anyone think they put wheat gluten in that?

best regards, lm

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You will need to address each food item individually. No one can give you an answer that will cover all meats in the deli dept. Not even a statement such as "cheddar cheese is gluten free" is accurate 100% of the time. Each brand of Cheddar Cheese needs to be looked at. Each deli counter needs to have a worker who hears you when you request the slicer be wiped down in order to remove gluten from previous orders.

Boars Head deli meats and cheeses are all gluten free.

Make a list of your child's favorite foods, go on the internet to the various sites and look up the gluten information at the sites. Call the 1800 numbers when necessary. Email the question to the company under the "Contact us" option. This has two benefits: One, you find the answer you need. Two, the company hears that folks need to know about gluten. This is what happened at Boars Head. They had so many inquiries into the gluten content of their product that they finally decided it was worth addressing. You will find the words, "gluten free" on all Boars Head products. Now, I do not eat their products as they contain NITRATES which are very bad for you, but it is an example of how simply questioning gluten can make changes happen.

AppleGate Farms cold cuts are nitrate free, dairy free, casein free, horomone free, antibiotic free... and they still taste great! I mention them only in the hopes that you would consider their products over other nitrate laden ones.

Since food products change ingredients so frequently, there is no one on line source for gluten free foods. Many food manufactureres will change and add ingredients due to cost cutting. Wheat may be cheaper and increase their profits. Malt may suddenly be added. It is up to the gluten free person to check diligently, each product they purchase. Check it each time, unless it is a sold as a specific gluten free food.

You may want to use kinnikinnick.com for ordering bread products. I like them, though I have other favorites such as Glutino. I can find that quite easily where I live.

Nogluegirl's list is amazing. It was very thoughtful of her to take the time to write all that down. I would tell you to exercise caution with each product and to read the label even though it may seem like over-kill. It is always possible for a food company that is not specifically selling a "gluten free" product to change it's ingredients with no warning to the celiac community.

Dear HawkFire,

Thank you for the compliments. I want to make this easier for others. Six months ago, I thought I was going crazy. I was totally overwhelmed. The whole day was call manufacturers, stay on hold for eternity, obsessively clean counters, dishes, and table, cook until you drop. Saving people from that is important to me. I agree that you should always be sure to check labels. I do as well. You never know when ingredients will change.

Sincerely,

NoGluGirl

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Deli meats and cheeses in general are very, very easy.

Cheese -- even "flavored" ones -- are nearly universally gluten-free (in the U.S.) and when you're talking about something like cheddar, all you have to do is read the ingredients. I'm not saying you don't ever have to call a company, but Kraft will clearly list any gluten and ALL Boar's Head cheeses are gluten-free. I've been gluten-free for more than 5 years and I've NEVER found a cheddar with gluten. If somebody else has, please post the brand. Same is true with processed cheese food slices. At this point, I won't even address the whole bleu cheese thing.

Deli meats in packages are nearly universally gluten-free. Kraft lists gluten. ALL Buddig, Hillshire Farm, Sarah Lee and Boar's Head prepackaged meats are gluten-free, althoiugh once again, it's always advisable to check the ingredients. There are some meats that are sliced at the counter that have gluten and the ones sliced at the counter also have a potential CC issue. You need a clean slicer.

I'm not sure which bags of chicken you're talking about, but if it's raw chicken, that's governed by the USDA. The USDA REQUIRES that any grain added to a raw meats be clearly listed in the ingredients. At the meat counter and with frozen raw meat, read the ingredients.

richard

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I recall years ago I found hams that had gluten. (back when I ate pork). I had already purchased the product because I didn't expect there to be gluten in the ham. I believe it was a standard brand of ham such as hillshire farm. Maybe not, but do be cautious with every product that is not specifically known to be gluten free... such as Boar's Head products. They have a commitment to being universally gluten free. They're ham will be safe.

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Honey Baked Hams contain gluten (in the honey glaze)

FYI, I have been gluten free for nearly 10 years and I have never gotten deli meats sliced from the actual deli. I do not trust the employees to be able to clean it properly. I eat Carl Buddig, Hebrew National and Oscar Meyer Deli Meats all the time.

The actual grocery delicatessen is a gamble and one that I am unwilling to take...

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Honey Baked Hams contain gluten (in the honey glaze)

FYI, I have been gluten free for nearly 10 years and I have never gotten deli meats sliced from the actual deli. I do not trust the employees to be able to clean it properly. I eat Carl Buddig, Hebrew National and Oscar Meyer Deli Meats all the time.

The actual grocery delicatessen is a gamble and one that I am unwilling to take...

Amen to that!

Yesterday I was getting roast beef at the deli and I asked the counter-person if I could see the ingredients because I was on a gluten free diet and needed to avoid WRBO. She said she could read them to me, which she did, and all seemed fine. She packaged up the roast beef and when I looked at the price sticker, it had the ingredients listed, they've never done this before. I looked it over as I walked away and there it was listed under the ingredients for the rub--wheat gluten. I took it back and put it on the counter and asked which part of wheat and gluten she couldn't understand. She then tells me that's in the rub, not the roast beef :blink:

And they let these people play with razor sharp blades? :ph34r:

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Well John, sounds like she just "rubbed" you the wrong way. lm

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Amen to that!

Yesterday I was getting roast beef at the deli and I asked the counter-person if I could see the ingredients because I was on a gluten free diet and needed to avoid WRBO. She said she could read them to me, which she did, and all seemed fine. She packaged up the roast beef and when I looked at the price sticker, it had the ingredients listed, they've never done this before. I looked it over as I walked away and there it was listed under the ingredients for the rub--wheat gluten. I took it back and put it on the counter and asked which part of wheat and gluten she couldn't understand. She then tells me that's in the rub, not the roast beef :blink:

And they let these people play with razor sharp blades? :ph34r:

lol!! :lol:

So what were the ingredients in the actual roast beef part? Uh - roast beef? It's all the things that AREN"T roast beef that we care about!

This would be funny if it weren't so hazardous to our health.

I agree that you should always be sure to check labels. I do as well. You never know when ingredients will change.

Sincerely,

NoGluGirl

Ah, yes - the words I fear the most - "New and Improved". What is so improved about sticking some gluten in something that shouldn't have any??

Debbie

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