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  • Jefferson Adams
    Jefferson Adams

    Papa John's New Gluten-Free Pizza Not Safe For Celiacs

    Reviewed and edited by a celiac disease expert.

      Popular pizza maker Papa John’s newest pizza offering is gluten-free, but not for the people who need it most.


    Caption: Papa John's says its new gluten-free pizza is not safe for people with celiac disease. Photo: CC-- imeguides

    Celiac.com 08/14/2017 - Pizza chain Papa John's is warning consumers that its new gluten-free pizza is not safe for people with celiac disease or serious gluten intolerance.

    After announcing on Monday that it was introducing a gluten-free crust made with sorghum, teff, amaranth, and quinoa at locations across the US, the company warned that it does not recommend the crust for people with a serious gluten intolerance.

    An official statement from the company reads in part:

    "Papa John's employs procedures to prevent contact with gluten…it is possible that a pizza with gluten-free crust could be exposed to gluten during the in-store, pizza-making process.

    Therefore, the brand does not recommend its Gluten-Free Crust made with Ancient Grains for customers with Celiac Disease or serious gluten intolerances."

    This gluten-free pizza dustup is similar to efforts by Dominos to debut a gluten-free crust, but not a gluten-free pizza.

    Now, can major pizza makers actually produce a gluten-free pizza for those who need it? Yes.

    Take Pizza Hut, for example, which has worked hard to offer a genuinely gluten-free pizza experience.

    Pizza Hut strives to serve certifiably gluten-free pizzas by storing ingredients in designated gluten-free kits. Workers wear gloves to prepare the pizzas, bake the pizzas on parchment paper, and use a designated gluten-free pizza cutter.

    Even so, Pizza Hut website says it cannot guarantee that the pizza is prepared in a 100% gluten free environment, and that customers should consult a medical advisor before ordering.

    So, that's your slice of gluten-free pizza insight for now.

    Read more at: businessinsider.com


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    I commend Papa John's for their honesty. In my personal opinion I do not believe anyone with celiac disease should be eating pizza prepared in the same facilities with gluten. Way too high of risk for cross contamination. Even the oven space that it is being cooked in contains gluten. Up until two years ago I was still eating out at restaurants that offered "gluten free" options, and yet I was still getting sick all of the time. Then one night I was able to figure it out, I was only eating at 2 dedicated gluten free establishments and 1 national up scale chain that assures everyone that ALL possible precautions are taken. After eating a meal from the chain I became very ill, and it was then I realized I need to stop eating out a locations that are not 100% gluten free. I believe that those with celiac are still ingesting gluten when they decide to dine out, and unless they are testing all the food or having blood work done soon after, they will never know just how safe all the meals and establishments actually are. I have heard and read time and time again that no amount of gluten is safe for those with celiac, but unfortunately I do not believe the community is actually aware of the invisible risks to us.

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    On 8/21/2017 at 3:26 AM, Guest Rick said:

    I commend Papa John's for their honesty. In my personal opinion I do not believe anyone with celiac disease should be eating pizza prepared in the same facilities with gluten. Way too high of risk for cross contamination. Even the oven space that it is being cooked in contains gluten. Up until two years ago I was still eating out at restaurants that offered "gluten free" options, and yet I was still getting sick all of the time. Then one night I was able to figure it out, I was only eating at 2 dedicated gluten free establishments and 1 national up scale chain that assures everyone that ALL possible precautions are taken. After eating a meal from the chain I became very ill, and it was then I realized I need to stop eating out a locations that are not 100% gluten free. I believe that those with celiac are still ingesting gluten when they decide to dine out, and unless they are testing all the food or having blood work done soon after, they will never know just how safe all the meals and establishments actually are. I have heard and read time and time again that no amount of gluten is safe for those with celiac, but unfortunately I do not believe the community is actually aware of the invisible risks to us.

    I don't understand why Papa Johns they even bother selling supposedly gluten-free Pizza if it's not for people with Celiac disease after all that is what gluten-free is really all about not just gluten-free fad diet eating people (which is probably the patrons they are trying to attract) but people,who,suffer from this serious disease.  And, I agree don't eat any foods that are prepared in an establishment that produces wheat, barley, rye, and in some cases oats, as not everyone can have oats even the gluten-free oats, I stay away from any establishment that is not totally gluten-free.  There are a lot of restaurants now that are just for gluten-free and you can feel safe in these places, I have never had a problem with them.

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  • About Me

    Jefferson Adams is Celiac.com's senior writer and Digital Content Director. He earned his B.A. and M.F.A. at Arizona State University, and has authored more than 2,000 articles on celiac disease. His coursework includes studies in science, scientific methodology, biology, anatomy, medicine, logic, and advanced research. He previously served as SF Health News Examiner for Examiner.com, and devised health and medical content for Sharecare.com. Jefferson has spoken about celiac disease to the media, including an appearance on the KQED radio show Forum, and is the editor of the book "Cereal Killers" by Scott Adams and Ron Hoggan, Ed.D.

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