As the first national pizza chain to roll out a gluten free pizza, Domino’s announced their new gluten free pizza crust on May 7, 2012. It is available in all of its nearly 5000 stores. Who is it for? It all depends upon your sensitivity to gluten. Do you have gluten sensitivity, gluten intolerance or celiac disease? Watch the video to learn the ingredients, procedures and warnings, and read this entire article to learn the difference between the two National Foundation for Celiac Awareness designations for restaurants from their GREAT Kitchens Expansion Program. You may be surprised at what you learn.
On April 25, 2012 the NFCA rolled out the expansion program of GREAT Kitchens providing 2 separate designations: Amber and Green. Why the two separate designations? The NFCA realized that gluten free items offered in restaurants were getting out of hand. Since no rules are yet set by the FDA, they decided to act now by providing 2 different designations for gluten free offerings: Amber for gluten sensitivity and Green which is safe for celiac disease and non-celiac sensitivity.
The NFCA suggests you ask questions and proceed with caution when eating at facilities approved with their Amber Designation. As part of NFCA’s Great Kitchen Program, their Amber Designation is provided for those kitchens that are not safe for those with celiac disease, but safe for mild gluten sensitivity. Many individuals assume that their Kitchen Program was to make kitchens free of cross contamination, but this is not always the case anymore. Domino’s is a chain that has various kitchen practices which falls under the Amber Designation. An Amber Designation means that the kitchen has been approved for ingredient verification and basic training of wait staff and managers.
The NFCA’s Green Designation is recommended for those offerings for those with celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity. This verifies that comprehensive training has been provided to wait staff, managers and kitchen staff; the status of gluten free ingredients have been verified; and the company has established strict gluten cross contamination procedures.
Though there are many who feel that having two designations cause more confusion, as seeing the NFCA label used to provide some with certainty that it is free of gluten cross contamination, this may not be the case anymore, at least until awareness is made of the two designations. They surely picked the most opportune time, as this month is National Celiac Awareness month.
All training for either designation certification is performed online through NFCA.
Domino’s Gluten Free Pizza Procedures
They make their crust with under 20 ppm (parts per million) gluten. However, trace amounts of gluten exists. This comes into play because their toppings are used for all pizzas, as well as their ovens. And glutenous flour tends to fly about the kitchen and may contamination gluten free pizza. They use a special tray to place the pizza in the oven, though, as can be seen in the video above.
Full List of Domino’s Gluten Free Pizza Crust Ingredients
Their crust contains: Water, Rice Flour, Rice Starch, Potato Starch, Olive Oil, Evaporated Cane Juice, Tapioca Flour, Potato Flour, Fresh Yeast, Avicel, Salt, Calcium Propionate. All of these ingredients are not stated in their released video.
Which Toppings to Avoid
While the you may order a gluten free crust, some of their topping contain gluten. The ingredients to avoid are: Philly meat, Alfredo sauce and cheddar sauce. In addition, you should avoid their boneless chicken, as it also contains gluten. And their salads may be cross contaminated with gluten, as they are prepared at another facility using similar toppings as their pizza toppings.
Why Doesn’t Domino’s Make Their Gluten Free Pizza Crust for Celiacs?
While Domino’s would have wanted to service the gluten intolerant, their present business model currently does not allow them to ensure 100% gluten-free pizza. They worked closely with NFCA, and came up with the best model they could create at this time.
With the above stated, you should be aware that if you are gluten intolerant, have non-celiac gluten sensitivity or celiac disease the NFCA does not recommend Domino’s gluten free pizza for you. It was created to address the issues of those with mild gluten sensitivity. If you read the fine print, you’ll find that it states that their gluten free pizza crust is prepared in a common kitchen with the risk of gluten exposure; the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA) does not recommend the pizza for those with celiac disease; and that those with gluten sensitivities should exercise judgment in consuming their gluten free pizza.
For Sources and to Learn More:
Read Domino’s full press release here.
See Domino’s Gluten Free Pizza Crust FAQs.
Learn more about the NFCA’s designations here.
Read the NFCA’s Designation Statement here.
If the new designation upsets you, take action by signing this Petition.