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Papa Murphy's New gluten-free Offering

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Papa Murphy's is the pizza place where you go in and choose the pizza toppings you like. Then you take the pizza home and bake it in your own oven.

 

They've just come out w/ a Udi's gluten-free crust and are advertising they can give you a gluten-free pizza. Of course, there are tons of us commenting on their website and writing the corporate site to ask serious questions. One person asked if there were actually "schooled" in the gluten-free food arena and would they be changing their gloves when making a gluten-free pizza. Papa Murphy's responded that... surely they would change gloves, when asked, and would accommodate utensil changes... WITHIN REASON.

 

Bottom line... I told anyone who cared to read that this was NOT a gluten-free panacea and to avoid it at all costs. Serving completely gluten-free fare is an education and it was obvious Papa Murphy's has not taken the class!

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I used to be a huge Papa Murphy's fan. I still get texts from them so my husband can get their pizzas, which he cooks in his mother's kitchen. (That crap ain't going in my oven.) Last week I got a text for bogo pizza and we went in and our pizzas had a flyer on them for the Udi's crusts. Every store makes their regular crusts fresh, in-store every day. They don't have separate containers of toppings for gluten free pizzas or a separate place to make them. You couldn't pay me to eat one of their pizzas.

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That just sounds really unsafe.  And it's a bummer because I'd love a really good pizza.  Some people though will eat it.  My dential hygienist has celiac disease and she eats the Domino's gluten free pizza even though they say it's not for celiacs.  I wouldn't, couldn't.  Ugh.

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I know a family that is gluten-free for their kid who has autism. Some people are gluten-free because it helps with other AI diseases or other conditions they have besides celiac. If they can enjoy this pizza and not suffer any issues from it, more power to them. Especially the kids, because being a kid is already rough and being different makes it so much harder. There is a real group of people that exist that can use this, and good for them. But it is so disappointing that they haven't taken the time to become properly educated or GIG certified so they can make pizza for us all. Heck, I think most of us would be happy if they even had just limited toppings, like their top 5 and maybe their 2 most popular specialty pizzas or something. Limited toppings is what we get at The Pie, which has a separate kitchen, and there are no complaints there!

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Thank you for the warning on that. I had a friend who tried to encourage me to eat one of their pizzas showing me the gluten-free label and stuff. Bless them for  thinking about me, but I  was not so convienced, now I know to leave it well and alone, and that's a major bummer as I hear they are terrific.

I used to be a huge Papa Murphy's fan. I still get texts from them so my husband can get their pizzas, which he cooks in his mother's kitchen. (That crap ain't going in my oven.) Last week I got a text for bogo pizza and we went in and our pizzas had a flyer on them for the Udi's crusts. Every store makes their regular crusts fresh, in-store every day. They don't have separate containers of toppings for gluten free pizzas or a separate place to make them. You couldn't pay me to eat one of their pizzas.

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Not to mention... Udi's pizza crusts are terrible!! I've been to pizza places where I trust their practices and they often used Against the Grain crusts (which are only for businesses... not individuals... to purchase). Those are awesome! Udi's... not so much.

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Not to mention... Udi's pizza crusts are terrible!! I've been to pizza places where I trust their practices and they often used Against the Grain crusts (which are only for businesses... not individuals... to purchase). Those are awesome! Udi's... not so much.

You can buy against the grain crusts!!!  I have seen them at a few places... any Sprouts stores within reasonable distance to you?  Unless they have a version they only sell to restaurants... but I agree they are very good.  I am also not a fan of the Udi's crusts.  I think they'd be good for kids especially when you need to make them their own pizza.  But if I am going to get a pizza on a crappy Udi's crust and have to bake it myself... I am just going to buy the toppings myself and make it all at home.  I can see papa murphys being potentially do-able if you got them to do special treatment for you like getting everything out of containers in the back... but lots of places where it could go wrong.  I used to love that place pre-diagnosis.... /cry

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This really depends on the location. Not all of them are owned by the same people. Also, they only have 2-3 meat ingredients that are gluten free.

 

I actually went into the one by my house and taught them how to make a safe, gluten free pizza. Showed them how to use a separate work station, spoons, scoops and ingredients. I set them up with a tray that has separate cheese, veggies, and only has the gluten-free meats on it.  So, at my location they do it safely because I showed them how to do it.

 

They do use Uddis crust but it's not the same crust you buy at th store, it's a lot better than that. Uddis works with places to make special recipe gluten-free breads for Papa Murphy's and other places  like Erbert's & Gerberts Sub shops. The products they sell to restuarants tend to be different than what you buy off the shelf and are actually better tasting, IMO.

 

I spend some time talking with the manager of Erbert's and Gerberts where I go and they actually had Uddis make 8 different recipes for their Gluten-Free bread before they got a good one. I have had their subs on gluten-free bread and it is probably best gluten-free bread I've had.

 

So, the only two places I get food that I don't make myself is from my local Papa Murphy's, Chipotle and Erberts and Gerberts and that's because I have observed their practices and in one case actually helped them to do it safely.

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Hey Fenrir...I think it's awesome that you went in and showed them how to do that! How cool!

You'd be surprised how many places are open to letting you show them the best way. Sometimes if you do the research and are willing to show them, the managers can be pretty receptive.

 

My experience is that most of these places are willing to do things the right way, particularly if you make it easy for them by telling them how to do it.

 

I have found that the best approach is to have them set up a gluten-free tray. That way all the employee has to do is pull out the tray, go over to the designated gluten-free work station and as long as they change gloves and use the utensils and ingridients on the tray it should be safe for celiacs. So basically they have this 2ftx2ft  tray dedicated to gluten-free pizzas. The ingriedents are taken directly from the bag/container when first opened and put into containers on the gluten-free tray. Only the gluten-free meats are only the tray and I made them up a little list to keep that register so they can tell people which ingredients they can have on a celiac safe gluten-free pizza. More or less it is bacon, and pepperoni and most of the fruits/veggies.

 

This also happens to be the way Erberts & Gerbert's makes their subs.

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Papa Murphy's "gluten free pizza" is definitely not an option that I will let my celiac kid eat. 

 

On the plus side: The gluten-free crust (just an Udi's crust) was separately packaged/wrapped, and already on a baking tray so the crust doesn't come in contact with their counter or prep area. The pizza-maker removed his gloves and washed his hands before taking out the gluten-free crust. He then put on a fresh pair of gloves to prep the pizza. 

 

On the downside: He then grabbed the shared spatula from the shared sauce bin and used it to slather to sauce all over the gluten-free crust. Umm, can you say "major cross contamination?" After they finished my pizza, I drove to the grocery store across the street to get my daughter a frozen Udi's pizza instead. The rest of the family at the PM pizza. 

 

We may give it another go, but next time I will be the big-time-PITA customer who directs them to take out a fresh sauce container and use a brand-new utensil and watches like a hawk while they do their thing. Maybe. Don't love PM pizza so much that we just HAVE to have it. If we do, will so how that goes - probably will have more to do with the individual franchisee than any corporate-wide thing, so I'd anticipate if I have luck that it won't be universal across all PM locations. 

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I don't trust any of these big pizza chains that claim they make gluten free pizza.

 

In my grocery store here in Western Maryland, I have TONS of frozen gluten free pizzas to choose from in the Organic/Gluten free isles. Against the Grain has a premade gluten-free pizza and it's the best one I've ever had. We get it a lot in my household.

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Happily, Daiya pizzas are now available at my health food store. 

 

Most of the pizza places are pretty iffy. There is a place here in Michigan, though, Guido's that offers truly gluten free pizza. They have a gluten free bakery right next door to them and the pizza is baked in the bakery's oven. The other pizza place that I feel comfortable with is California Pizza Kitchen.

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We went to the Gluten Free Expo last weekend in Phoenix. Huge Expo. Lots of yummy samples and educated people to talk to re Celiac and Gluten free. One HUGE exception. Papa Murphy's was there, handing out "gluten free pizza samples". They had an oven there they were cooking them in. I figured since they were at the Gluten Free Expo, they would of made some changes. Just as my daughter and I were about to try the pizza they gave us, they guy causally said "if your celiac you can't eat our pizza". REALLY? Your at a gluten free expo and we can't eat your pizza? I asked about their practices of prepping for this particular event, and why we couldn't have it. He said all the pizzas they were serving that day were made in their stores, around gluten, and separate utensils and sauce and toppings were not used to prep these pizzas. Really?  Why in the world were they at the worlds largest gluten free expo that travels to so many large cities? Even if you are "gluten sensitive" or "gluten allergy" their pizza is not safe for you.  Maybe if you were just trying to avoid gluten? I don't know. But they should not of been there.

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I know a family that is gluten-free for their kid who has autism. Some people are gluten-free because it helps with other AI diseases or other conditions they have besides celiac. If they can enjoy this pizza and not suffer any issues from it, more power to them. Especially the kids, because being a kid is already rough and being different makes it so much harder. There is a real group of people that exist that can use this, and good for them. But it is so disappointing that they haven't taken the time to become properly educated or GIG certified so they can make pizza for us all. Heck, I think most of us would be happy if they even had just limited toppings, like their top 5 and maybe their 2 most popular specialty pizzas or something. Limited toppings is what we get at The Pie, which has a separate kitchen, and there are no complaints there!

Not only for Autism, even though my son has Aspergers, but most people don't realize gluten-free helps people suffering with inflammation related Arthritis, which I have. Just thought I'd throw that out there.

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Went in and talked to the manager of our pm and asked about the gluten free pizza, and he told me he can't guarantee its 100% gluten free because of the flour in the air from the other crusts being made.  I value the honesty.   The other employee also mentioned changing gloves.   I was thinking wow great, until I walked out and got to thinking about cross contamination from everyone grabbing the toppings out of the same bins and spreading the sauce with the same utensils.    My son was just diagnosed this week so we are new to the whole lifestyle.   So any help or info is greatly appreciated.    Thanks

 

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1 hour ago, Knd746599 said:

Went in and talked to the manager of our pm and asked about the gluten free pizza, and he told me he can't guarantee its 100% gluten free because of the flour in the air from the other crusts being made.  I value the honesty.   The other employee also mentioned changing gloves.   I was thinking wow great, until I walked out and got to thinking about cross contamination from everyone grabbing the toppings out of the same bins and spreading the sauce with the same utensils.    My son was just diagnosed this week so we are new to the whole lifestyle.   So any help or info is greatly appreciated.    Thanks

 

Welcome!  

You were smart to think about cross contamination.  Although it is great that there are so many gluten-free options out there, in the beginning it is best to try a whole foods diet, until your son feels a bit better.  The learning curve for the gluten-free diet is steep.  It is better for you to get everything down before letting others feed him.  

When I was diagnosed, my hubby had been gluten free for 12 years.  I thought I knew the drill and converted right over to those gluten-free goodies I baked him.  Turned out, like many of us, I had some food inolerances not related to gluten but as a result of gut damage.  So, additives like Xantham gum made me think I was getting glutened, but I was not.  So, again, try to stick to naturally gluten free foods that are less processed for a while. 

When you do venture out, I use "find me gluten free" and read the reviews from celiacs (not a person who thinks gluten-free is a way to lose weight! )  

Here are some great tips from out Newbie 101 thread:

 

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On 8/28/2016 at 1:00 AM, Knd746599 said:

Thanks.  This is very helpful.  Our first post diagnosis grocery store trip took several hours, just trying to read labels to make sure everything is safe.   Our son loves bread and this going to be the hardest part. 

my first trip to the grocery store i had a meltdown and didn't buy anything lolz

i like udi's bread or rudi's is pretty good.  if you have a red robin nearby, they will sell you the gluten-free burger buns (and they are yummy)  good luck :) !

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