March 3rd, 2014
10:00 AM ET
Share this on:

America's Test Kitchen is a real 2,500 square foot test kitchen located just outside of Boston that is home to more than three dozen full­time cooks and product testers. Our mission is simple: to develop the absolute best recipes for all of your favorite foods. To do this, we test each recipe 30, 40, sometimes as many as 70 times, until we arrive at the combination of ingredients, technique, temperature, cooking time, and equipment that yields the best, most­ foolproof recipe. America’s Test Kitchen's online cooking school is based on nearly 20 years of test kitchen work in our own facility, on the recipes created for Cook's Illustrated magazine, and on our two public television cooking shows.

In the pantheon of cookies, chocolate chip cookies are just about everyone’s favorite. But gluten-free versions are all too often overly cakey or gritty - a far cry from the classic. We spent a year developing "The How Can It Be Gluten Free Cookbook," and what would a gluten-free cookbook be without a tried-and-true chocolate chip cookie recipe? Here’s how we made gluten-free chocolate chip cookies with a rich, buttery flavor, a crisp exterior and a tender (but not too cakey) interior. Even we had trouble tasting the difference between a traditional chocolate chip cookie and our gluten-free version.

We started the development process for our Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies by swapping in our flour blend for the all-purpose flour in a standard Toll House cookie recipe. It was no surprise that these cookies had problems: They were flat, sandy and greasy. We’d discovered during our baked goods testing that gluten-free flour blends simply can’t absorb as much fat as all-purpose flour can, so cutting back on the butter helped to minimize greasiness. Less butter, along with some xanthan gum, also helped alleviate the spread issue, so the cookies didn’t bake up so flat.

As for the sandiness, we knew from our gluten-free muffin testing that fixing this problem required a two-step approach. The starches in our blend needed more liquid as well as more time to hydrate and soften, so we added a couple tablespoons of milk and let the dough rest for 30 minutes. This resting time also had a secondary benefit: It gave the sugar time to dissolve, which led to faster caramelization in the oven. And that meant a cookie not just with deeper flavor, but also with a chewier center and crisper edges. Finally, we wanted our cookies to be less cakey and more chewy.

We realized creaming the butter, as the original Toll House recipe directs, was aerating the butter too much. Melting the butter instead, and changing the ratio of brown sugar to granulated sugar, gave our cookies the right chewy texture. The extra brown sugar also gave our cookies a more complex, toffee-like flavor. Bite for bite, this was a chocolate chip cookie that could rival the best versions of the classic.

Here were our key kitchen discoveries when it comes to making the ultimate batch of gluten-free chocolate chip cookies:

Add xanthan gum:
Because starches are liquid when hot and don’t set up until cool, and because the bonds between the proteins in gluten-free flour blends are weak and few in number, gluten-free cookies don’t have the ability to hold their shape like traditional cookies, which have the power of gluten to provide structure, even when hot. To prevent the cookies from spreading all over the baking sheet, we needed to add something to reinforce the weak structure of our gluten-free flour. Just a small amount of xanthan gum did the trick.

Get the sugar ratio right:
We wanted a cookie that was chewy in the center and slightly crisp on the outside. The toll house cookie recipe calls for equal amounts of granulated sugar and brown sugar. Granulated sugar contributes to a caramelized, crisp texture and provides structure, while brown sugar adds moisture and rich caramel notes. We went up on brown sugar and down on granulated sugar to achieve a perfectly chewy center with crisp edges. Using more brown sugar than white also enhanced the butterscotch flavor notes in this classic cookie.

Use less butter and make sure to melt it, too:
A traditional chocolate chip cookie recipe has about 12 tablespoons of butter, but our gluten-free version couldn’t handle this much fat. That’s because our flour blend has more starch and less protein than all-purpose flour has, and it’s the proteins that are compatible with fat. We found that eight tablespoons of butter were the most our cookies could handle; any additional butter couldn’t be absorbed and so made the cookies greasy. Creaming aerated the butter, which made the cookies too cakey; melting the butter got us closer to the texture we were after.

Hydrate the dough:
Because we had to decrease the amount of butter in our cookies, the dough had very little liquid to hydrate the flour (remember, butter is about 18% water) and we were left with gritty cookies. To solve this problem, we added a small amount of liquid to our dough in the form of milk, and then we let the dough rest to give the starches enough time to absorb the liquid. Two tablespoons of milk and a 30-minute rest hydrated the dough just enough to eliminate grittiness. resting the dough also helped stiffen it, which improved structure and prevented spread.

Portion them out for freezing:
Given the fact gluten-free cookies don’t store all that well - and that a fresh chocolate chip cookie, gluten-free or traditional, is better than an old one - we have found that freezing the cookie dough is a good option in some recipes. Portion and shape the dough according to the recipe, arrange the unbaked cookies on a baking sheet, then put the sheet in the freezer.

Save them for up to two weeks:
Freeze the dough until it’s completely firm (for between two to three hours) then transfer them to a zipper-lock freezer bag and freeze them for up to two weeks.

RECIPE: Gluten-free chocolate chip cookies
Makes about 24 cookies

Note: Do not omit the xanthan gum; it is crucial to the structure of the cookies. Do not shortchange the 30-minute rest for the dough; if you do, the cookies will spread too much. Not all brands of chocolate chips are processed in a gluten-free facility, so read labels carefully.

8 ounces (1 3/4 cups) ATK Gluten-Free Flour Blend
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
5 1/4 ounces (3/4 cup packed) light brown sugar
2 1/3 ounces (1/3 cup) granulated sugar
1 large egg
2 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
7 1/2 ounces (1 1/4 cups) semisweet chocolate chips

1. Whisk flour blend, baking soda, xanthan gum and salt together in medium bowl; set aside. Whisk melted butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar together in large bowl until well combined and smooth. Whisk in egg, milk and vanilla and continue to whisk until smooth. Stir in flour mixture with rubber spatula and mix until soft, homogeneous dough forms. Fold in chocolate chips. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let dough rest for 30 minutes. (Dough will be sticky and soft.)

2. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Using 2 soup spoons and working with about 1 1/2 tablespoons of dough at a time, portion dough and space 2 inches apart on prepared sheets. Bake cookies, 1 sheet at a time, until golden brown and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft, 11 to 13 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through baking.

3. Let cookies cool on sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature. (Cookies are best eaten on day they are baked, but they can be cooled and placed immediately in airtight container and stored at room temperature for up to 1 day.)

Gluten-Free Flour Substitution
King Arthur Gluten-Free Multi-Purpose Flour
8 ounces = 3/4 cup plus 2/3 cup

Bob’s Red Mill All-Purpose GF Baking Flour
8 ounces = 1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons

(Note that cookies made with King Arthur will spread more and be more delicate, while cookies made with Bob’s Red Mill will spread more and have a distinct bean flavor.)

More from America's Test Kitchen:
Which Gluten-Free Spaghetti Doesn’t Taste Like Cardboard?
Buy Our Ground-Breaking Gluten-Free Cookbook
What Baking Sheet Should You Use to Make Cookies?
Buy Our Favorite Baking Sheet on Amazon

soundoff (61 Responses)
  1. Bea

    THESE WERE THE BEST GF COOKIES I'VE EVER MADE OR SEEN!!!!!! you would never know they were gluten free :P THANK YOU!!!!!!!

    August 18, 2014 at 5:09 am |
  2. Nancy

    This recipe looks great! I found some gluten free recipes on this online book and they were to die for!

    June 4, 2014 at 6:25 pm |
  3. Teresa

    Love all your information and the support we all can bring to gluten and celiac individuals. Everyone deserves to know ways to make some of their all time favorites again with healthy alternative grains.


    April 29, 2014 at 2:30 pm |
  4. Teresa

    Thanks for contributing this article for all gluten/celiac individuals looking for alternative recipes to help them on the journey.

    April 29, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
  5. M.Ko

    1. Before anyone attacks what I have to say, please know I have non-celiac gluten sensitivity, a very real condition that results in my having extreme GI symptoms immediately after ingesting gluten and being bedridden for 3-4 days after that.

    2. Wheat allergies are real, gluten allergies are real, food sensitivities are real. Celiac disease is real.

    3. I have met a lot of people who have given up gluten for fluffy dietary reasons that don't have a health condition, and I have had to argue with a lot of waiters in restaurants who think that "just a little bit of gluten" (ie. Cross contamination issues are too nitpicky) won't be a problem because other people have said that to them. (Thanks diet fad people for spreading misinformation about my condition.)

    4. GMO Wheat is NOT being cultivated for food in the USA. Google this. The FDA has not approved any GMO wheat at this time.

    5. There is a POSSIBILTY that glyphosate (RoundUp herbicide) is causing a lot of the upsurge in gluten sensitivity and other GI problems. Google Dr. Stephanie Seneff. She also has a talk on YT. I say "possibilty" because I am a skeptic about every new theory I come across until I can research it. Her research is intriguing though.

    6. I know some people have problems with xanthan gum. I do not.

    7. My favorite gluten free foods are asparagus, avocados, shrimp, latkes with sour cream and applesauce. I'm tired of people bringing me gf cookies and cake as a treat. A perfectly ripe avocado will gain my undying love and some ecstatic facial expressions on eating.

    8. I have been having chocolate chip cookie cravings this week.

    9. Bob is having a lot of fun getting your goat.

    10. God I need a chocolate chip cookie.

    11. My cat posted these comments.

    Good health to you all.

    April 10, 2014 at 8:15 am |
  6. KAthy

    Has anyone made these cookies – how are they??

    March 24, 2014 at 5:30 pm |
    • Marie

      They are outstanding! The only thing is that I think there is a typo. I think instead of 1 tablespoon vanilla it should say 1 teaspoon. I made it with 1 1/2 tsp vanilla to be on the safe side and the cookies were delicious! Enjoy!

      March 24, 2014 at 9:36 pm |
  7. Marie

    Question about the recipe: Hey, did anyone make these chocolate chip cookies? I'm making them now and 1T vanilla seems like an awful lot in ratio with the other ingredients. Did they mean 1t? I can't find a Contact Us link so that I can ask the ATK staff. Anyone?

    March 10, 2014 at 9:23 pm |
  8. pennypoet007

    Why can't the mfgr's add xanthan gum to gluten-free flour? It's very hard to find that stuff and when you do, you must purchase a lifetime supply !

    March 10, 2014 at 10:16 am |
    • Lisa

      you can get a small package at Wegman's for a pretty reasonable price...

      March 19, 2014 at 8:00 am |
    • Sonia Simone

      Because different types of recipes need xanthan gum in different proportions. Get a package, it's worth it! It opens up the doors to lots of excellent GF baking.

      March 30, 2014 at 12:44 am |
  9. Say What?

    If you have to add Xanthan gum, then its far from perfect...

    March 5, 2014 at 1:33 pm |
    • mattk

      My wife is a professional baker, and she is also (ironically) sensitive to gluten.
      She has tried numerous different binders in gluten free baking but so far Xanthan Gum is the closest (and best) option as a gluten substitute. Guar Gum works almost as well but is not as good as Xanthan.

      March 9, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
  10. Don

    This from the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology.

    Two truths about allergies that may blow your mind: Bo Obama isn’t a hypoallergenic dog, and nobody is actually “allergic” to gluten.

    These are just two examples of the myths allergists would very much like to bust, according to a presentation being given today at the annual meeting of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. Dr. David Stukus put the presentation together after years of patients coming to him with fiercely held, but totally incorrect, beliefs about allergies — something that’s only gotten worse in this age of medical Googling.

    Myth 2: No bread for me; I’m allergic to gluten!

    Two words these days that make any allergist sigh: gluten allergy.

    “Gluten has been blamed for all that ails humanity,” Stukus says. But there are only three disorders you can attribute to gluten on a scientific basis, he says: celiac disease, wheat allergies and non-celiac gluten sensitivity.

    “Then there’s this claim about ‘gluten allergy,’ which really doesn’t exist,” Stukus says. “It’s not really a recognized allergy. Wheat is a recognized allergy — but a lot of people will misinterpret that as gluten.”

    March 5, 2014 at 9:51 am |
    • Sonia Simone

      As many have said, this isn't about an allergic reaction, it's primarily about celiac. (Although some people are allergic to wheat as well, and this recipe would also be useful to them.) A real disease, honest. I'm afraid you've made yourself look like a bit of an idiot.

      Many of us, frankly, say "gluten allergy" because people like wait staff in restaurant hear the word "allergy" and they pay attention, where they're often rather fuzzy about what celiac is.

      The fact that many people are completely full of beans about gluten does not mean that everyone can eat gluten. Celiacs are between a half a percent and one percent of the population (and much higher in some parts of the world) - it doesn't sound like much, but it adds up to a heck of a lot of people.

      March 30, 2014 at 12:49 am |
  11. Burbank

    I have gluten sensitivity, but I have always preferred crunchy over chewy cookies anyway. Store bought "too crunchy" GF cookies are just fine with me. This recipie sounds pretty good too, but I would probably overcook it a minute or two to make it crunchier.

    March 4, 2014 at 5:47 pm |
  12. Thinking things through

    I do have to say, looking at that cookie, just give me some good quality dark chocolate, and we can call it quits. ;)

    March 4, 2014 at 5:40 pm |
  13. Becca

    This recipe may be quite delicious but it's not for me. In addition to not being able to eat gluten, I cannot have xanthan gum – it gives me bad cramps, even though it's derived from corn, I still can't eat it. Finding baked goods, and following recipies is difficult.

    To people who say "it's just a diet craze": I cannot have gluten because I physically become ill. Recently cross contamination resulted in not only with GI problems but also made my throat and lungs close, my vitals (pulse and blood pressure) to drop, etc, you get the point. I hate it when people say it's a "fad", while some people follow this "diet" others of us cannot eat gluten. I miss the days of when I could enjoy a doughnut, a heaping bowl of Lucky Charms, and being able to eat with my friends without worrying "am I going to get sick?". Even though I miss my past enjoyment of food, I have never directly consumed any wheat/gluten products. Cross contamination is enough to send my body is downward spiral and I personally want to remain alive and out of the ER. I have Celiac and I have a wheat allergy, neither of which I would ever want.

    March 4, 2014 at 4:36 pm |
    • bryanska

      Your celiac issue is not the fad. "Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity " is the fad, because it has no defined mechanism and is conflated with many other biological mechanisms.

      Your issue is real and quite well defined. I wish you the best in living a great life without gluten (or xanthan, which comes from several grain sources and not just corn).

      March 4, 2014 at 5:49 pm |
      • LC

        Gluten-sensitivity is not a fad. It's just not well studied–therefore, there is no defined mechanism at this time. As an epidemiologist, I see some amazing "anecdotal" evidence that would be pretty significant if combined in a larger sample. For example, a diabetic able to reduce her daily insulin by 6ml after going gluten-free (in case you are not familiar with diabetes, that's pretty amazing–most Rx drugs don't do that in an already "controlled" diabetic). Another person had debilitating lupus-like symptoms for years before going gluten-free and recovering her life in 3 months. I'm sure others could chime in people they have seen improve or recover from illness. The bottom line is that food sensitivities take a back seat to allergies and people do not understand the differences or the health consequences. Just remember, at one time people didn't wash there hands because there was no evidence germs caused illness!

        March 5, 2014 at 1:42 pm |
    • Kyra

      Becca, ground flax seed makes a one-to-one substitution of xanthan gum. Mix the ground flax seed with two parts boiling water and let it rest for a few moments. For example, if the recipe calls for 1 tsp of xanthan gum, take 1 tsp of flax seed and mix it with two tsps of boiling water.It becomes gelatinous, and holds the recipe together, like xanthan gum. Plus, it helps to eliminate that weird gluten free after-taste you get, gives the recipe a really nice, subtle nutty taste, and gives you some fiber and omega 3's.

      My sister has celiac's disease, and this has helped cakes rise, and cookies stay together.

      March 5, 2014 at 1:58 am |
  14. JD

    Ok I just have to say this and get this off my chest. It seems to me more people are allergic to more things than ever. What's going on? I guess I'm lucky that I'm not allergic to anything but outside of bee stings and hayfever/pollen I can't remember anybody I ever grew up with being allergic to anything.

    March 4, 2014 at 2:45 pm |
    • bryanska

      Combination of increased detection and confirmation bias (people diagnosing themselves based on intuition not conclusion).

      March 4, 2014 at 5:50 pm |
      • foodfight

        Your points on detection and bias are indeed quite valid. But, if increases in rates of several autoimmune disorders is any indication, there may be significant actual increases in incidence of occurrence as well. An increase in Type I diabetes in the U.S. over 8 years suggests there is a real increase in the rate of occurrence. Further, it suggests that increases likely have a strong environmental factor as genetic factors would not be expected to alter susceptibility at that rate that quickly. Could such an increase in the rate of occurrence in autoimmune disorders have origins in environmental factors that may also affect other allergies?

        March 4, 2014 at 8:40 pm |
  15. JLA

    Gluten-free is just another fad and I will be glad when it is done. Just like those who have fibromyalgia or other 'maladies', the people I have met who eat gluten-free are extremely high maintenance, attention-seeking individuals, mostly white, middle to upper class women. Another reason I have noticed is they want to keep their weight very low but don't want to admit it.

    March 4, 2014 at 2:45 pm |
    • Alicia

      I think I might love you.

      March 4, 2014 at 5:10 pm |
    • bryanska

      I always say "i'm not rich enough to have a gluten intolerance"

      March 4, 2014 at 5:51 pm |
    • kbie

      Wow... you really need to get educated on the medical facts behind gluten intolerance and celiac disease.

      March 5, 2014 at 1:42 pm |
    • Rochelle

      A fad?? Do you know anything about Celiac disease? It is an autoimmune disorder when the body cannot digest gluten. The body attacks the gluten, and also attacks the lower intestine. This causes sickness, vomiting, and pain. It can cause the body to not absorb nutrients, resulting in malnutrition. Get educated before you call things a fad. How egocentric to think they just because you don't have it, then it doesn't exist. Ignorant!!

      March 20, 2014 at 10:16 am |
  16. Fateh

    As a person diagnosed with Celiac Disease, but also a person with a modicum of common sense, I have to side with the underdog Bob on this issue. As a person who surfs the internet for a hobby, I have come across a LOT of misinformation concerning gluten. In fact, this misinformation is not limited to gluten. I have come to realize that the internet, splendid as it is, is a double-edged sword. Misinformation can spread just as easily, if not more so, than simple, boring truths.

    Case in point: most blogs claim that the number of people with gluten intolerance range from 1 in 3, all the way up to 100% of all people (it's just that some people can handle it better than others, they claim). A cursory look at the educational background of these bloggers (yes, some people actually do check that information) reveal that these "experts" either have no scientific background, or have a masters or PHD in something akin to "aromatherapy" from an online institution (and they have the gall to refer to themselves as "Doctor" on their blogs). Sadder still, is that many people fall for their claims. Autoimmune thyroidism can be cured by staying away from gluten, you say? Fascinating! There is a conspiracy to keep us all on gluten and thus spending all that money on pharmaceuticals, you say? Sheer genius! Hit the nail right on the head.

    Here's the un-adulterated truth, and this is bound to upset some people: Just as in real life, many on the internet prey on the weak minded. I assure you, there is NO scientific evidence backing up the claim that we are all gluten intolerant to various degrees. I assure you, going on a GF diet will NOT make you lose weight. I also have the sneaking suspicion that most people in that GF isle in Publix are not even gluten intolerant.

    But, such is the power of the internet. And, when, eventually, saner heads prevail, it will be revealed that gluten intolerance is not the epidemic that many people think it is, or that many people making money convincing other people that it is... think it is. Think about that.

    March 4, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
  17. Deb

    Not everyone that eats 'Gluten Free' has a problem with gluten. My ALLERGIST did blood tests that proved I was allergic to wheat. I follow a GF diet because it doesn't contain wheat. I don't have stomach problems when I eat it but if you did more research than "I know someone that said" you would find that there are hundreds of symptoms linked to gluten and wheat allergies. I'm very proud to say that after years of suffering from horrible asthma and joint pain cutting wheat out of my diet has completely cured these conditions. No more monthly visits to the doctor for asthma flare ups. No more monthly visits to the rheumatologist (who couldn't figure out what was causing the joint pain anyway). And as an added bonus....NO MORE ACHNE. I really thought I would be 80 years old and still have a face full of zits!

    March 4, 2014 at 1:55 pm |
    • Becca

      I hear you with the acne! I had the same problem before being diagnosed, as soon as I stopped eating gluten my acne cleared up almost overnight! I also had a rash that never went away and it annoyed me, but again, once I stopped eating gluten it also went away.

      March 4, 2014 at 4:39 pm |
  18. k

    "Gluten free," always means they take out one bad thing and just add another. I've never seen a gluten free product that I could safely digest. Ditch the grain and the sugar and use nut flour and honey or stevia then come back with a decent recipe. I've got a honey cake I make that is out of this world!

    March 4, 2014 at 12:12 pm |
  19. VictoriaSue

    Xanthan Gum??? And just how can this be good for you. There are enough additives in foods now a days than adding it to something that is supposed to be homemade. I guess I'll have to be asking my gluten free friends if they are using this in their cookies. If so, thanks but no thanks.

    March 4, 2014 at 11:19 am |
    • JFGI


      March 4, 2014 at 12:24 pm |
    • Margaret

      You can bet your GF friends are eating food with Xantham Gum in it if they eat anything that resembles wheat flour based foods. It doesn't replace wheat, it gives GF free food that risen texture.

      March 4, 2014 at 1:24 pm |
    • Alicia

      Nope nope nope, does not seem any healthier than any other additive out there.

      March 4, 2014 at 5:17 pm |
    • bryanska

      Xanthan is perfectly natural. Look it up. it's extremely safe and produced from living biomass. Any problems come from ingesting too much. It is a thickener after all.

      March 4, 2014 at 5:54 pm |
  20. Dennis

    Wheat has same symptoms as milk, butter, and eggs, causing stuffy nose and mucous. I would not call this the perfect chocolate chip cookie, simply another version of stuffy nose syndrome from mixing junk foods together for flavor, not health. Vegan wheat free varieties are much better, both flavor, effects, and health.

    March 4, 2014 at 11:12 am |
  21. Paula New York

    Not real? I double dog dare anyone to feed my dear mother-in-law a sandwich made on wheat bread and then take her for a ride in your car for a half an hour. Be prepared to need to have your car detailed when your ride is over!

    March 4, 2014 at 12:59 am |
  22. Been There

    Oh yeah, gluten allergies are real. Our son, who is now 16 has had severe reactions when he has accidentally injested gluten in the past. It is called anaphylactic shock. He carries an epipen when ever he leaves the house. When he was less than a year old he was transported via ambulance to the ER several times. His airway would nearly become swollen shut. It took quite a bit of testing by an allergist before they finally found the cause – gluten allergy. I will never forget the fear I felt while trying to perform CPR on our child while waiting for the ambulance.

    March 3, 2014 at 7:35 pm |
  23. Em

    Bob, I know there are a lot of people out there who do not believe gluten sensitivities/Celiac disease is real. I for one can attest it is very real. I came upon this disease after having one too many surgeries. It is a part of my family tree but most of my family is just fine. The people who have health issues can get allergic (even get celiac)! It's all in the way our genes are. Now if you gave me gluten I would end up in the hospital with extreme extreme stomach pain. It's not the eggs, butter, milk, etc in bread I have trouble is the Wheat! (my gastroenterologist did a lot of testing...involving food and that is what it is). Gluten allergies are definitely not a comfortable thing to deal with. Gluten allergies are a very real thing.

    March 3, 2014 at 3:47 pm |
  24. Johnny B Goode

    Now, now. Let's not all gang up on Bob. He's only jealous because the doc just told him that he doesn't have a trendy designer disease – just an run-of-the-mill STD.

    March 3, 2014 at 1:09 pm |
    • Bob

      You make it sound like it is normal to be a hypochondriac.

      March 3, 2014 at 4:46 pm |
      • Poor Baby

        You sound defensive.

        March 4, 2014 at 11:14 am |
  25. steve

    You contradict yourself Bob. "There is no such thing as gluten allergies...less one tenth of 1% of people are allergic to gluten."

    March 3, 2014 at 12:53 pm |
  26. celiac

    Did you read the article Bob? It doesn't mention gluten allergies. Now as to why many people require (and yes, medically require) a gluten free diet; it is most frequently due to Celiac disease. A rather common (like one in 130 people) autoimmune disease. And while celiac disease manifests a bit like food allergies, and sometimes celiacs describe it as a food allergy to make it easier for the uninformed to understand, it is not an allergy. Before spouting off-google it.

    March 3, 2014 at 12:43 pm |
    • Bob

      And how many people have allergies to xanthan gum?

      March 3, 2014 at 4:46 pm |
  27. Bob

    There is no such thing as gluten allergies. I know an allergist who says it's unpleasant that after testing them they don't have gluten allergies – less one tenth of 1% of people are allergic to gluten. There are a very few people, and those that have Crohn's, IBS, etc where they actually have a problem but they have problems with many foods.
    As always, none of you have any scientific evidence that gluten is bad – unless you count Aunt Martha or the companies trying to make a buck. Why do you think that bread is called the staff of life?
    People have eaten wheat since time memorial and this author wants to replace it with XANTHAN GUM!

    March 3, 2014 at 12:25 pm |
    • Kitty

      Yes but old world wheat is not what is put in the current breads and various grain based products we eat today, most of modern "wheat" is genetically modified to the point it does not even resemble what it was 35 years ago.
      The gluten sensitivities and allergies that are currently showing up are a result of genetically modified wheat not "classic" wheat.
      Besides we didn't eat wheat bread for most of our history, we ate a variety of breads made from a variety of grains (notice most "artisan" breads are mixed grain, there are corn breads, rice breads, potato breads for the irish,nut breads, even grass and bean based breads existed) and only recently were they made ONLY with wheat flour and GMO wheat flour that as I mentioned is NOT the same as old world wheat it is actually very genetically different..and that GMO wheat is what is causing people to have a "allergy".
      Many people can eat old world wheat, rye, and barley grain breads with no issue but hand them GMO wheat based bread and their throats swell up.

      And yes science has proven GMO wheat is bad, why do you think the UK has banned them?

      March 3, 2014 at 1:44 pm |
      • Warren

        Very well stated!

        March 3, 2014 at 3:04 pm |
      • Bob

        Please provide a scientific reference (not National Enquirer or your cousin) that says "old world wheat" causes less disease or difficulty than more modern wheat.

        March 3, 2014 at 4:51 pm |
        • k

          There comes a point when it's not everyone else's responsibility to spoon-feed you information. Google is your friend. Not only can you discover the exact scientific difference between the modern dwarf hybrid, you can actually read about people with IBS or Crohn's or celiac who have tried the old wheat and hear exactly how it effects them.

          March 4, 2014 at 12:16 pm |
        • Margaret

          Bob, why don't you supply credible evidence, rather than your friend, google, and facts without peer reviewed journal articles to back it up. Celiac is a histamine reaction (allergy) that can be seen in the gut, as well as on the skin. Other gluten intolerances are autoimmune or an inflammatory process exacerbated by wheat. Anyone who experiences unpredictable, sudden and painful diarrhoea and finds relief from it by limiting or avoiding gluten doesn't need to be chastised. Mind your own business if you think it's bollox. Or get a better lobby.

          March 4, 2014 at 1:07 pm |
        • kbie

          Hear, hear, to Margaret & K! One "allergist friend" does not a team of medical researchers make...

          March 5, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
        • Rochelle

          Bob, you clearly need to get a life. The chemical laden food we eat today is not healthy. The wheat that is produced today is genetically modified. People have a hard time digesting it. There might not be a wheat allergy, but Celiac is an autoimmune disorder. Do your research before you spew your ignorance. Just because you know an allergist does not mean you know what you are talking about.

          March 20, 2014 at 10:25 am |
    • Lemon

      Celiac disease is very real. Just ask one of those scientific DOCTORS, not your 1 friend who's an allergist. The fact that they identify it and there's not even any money in it for pharmaceutical companies says enough.

      March 3, 2014 at 4:25 pm |
    • Katie

      Well, yes there are. They can be allergies to anything, just as there can be sensitivities to anything. A lot of people are turning to a gluten free diet and are liking the change in their overall health. Less bowel troubles, less arthritic pain, less blood sugar problems are only a few of the benefits a lot of people are seeing. People with Celiac disease find the change in their overall health dramatic by going gluten free. Many geriatric doctors are now recommending their patients at least lessen the amount of gluten in their diets because metabolism changes as one ages and a gluten free diet works better for their quality of life.

      March 3, 2014 at 6:04 pm |
    • Thinking things through

      Bob, there are allergies and there are sensitiviites, and scientifically, they are not identical, but if one is either allergic to, or sensitive to, gluten, one should stay away. There is a lot more gluten in wheat over the last approximately 50 years, than previously. This is why the problems are showing up.

      I am LOW gluten, just to keep safe. And no, I won't be subbing in xanthan gun as a replacement. If I really want a chocolate chip cookie, say every other month - I am SO not a sweet tooth - I will deal with that, then. Folks I know do NOT have this option, and they do have to be NO gluten.

      It is real.

      March 3, 2014 at 7:00 pm |
    • Thinking things through

      What does this fellow you reference say about Celiacs? No, technically it is not an allergy, but does he recommend people with Celiacs eat wheat and gluten? Ii would doubt it.

      March 3, 2014 at 7:09 pm |
    • Alicia

      You're right, there is no such thing as a gluten allergy. You can be allergic to wheat itself, but not to be able to digest gluten celiac's disease) is an autoimmune disorder. Gluten insensitivity is what is grossly over diagnosed.

      March 4, 2014 at 5:32 pm |
| Part of