If you’re wondering what the answer to the question, “Is rice gluten free?” you’re probably new to the gluten free diet. Rice is naturally gluten-free. It doesn’t matter if you purchase a bag of uncooked, unprocessed rice in white, jasmine, brown, or even wild or red varieties. Boxed basmati rice is included. However, there are certain times when rice may contain gluten. The FDA allows up to 20 parts per million (ppm) gluten in any product labeled gluten free. However, rice is usually gluten free when it is not labeled gluten free. Learn when rice is gluten free and when it may not be.
I have heard from several people with celiac disease that they have experienced severe reactions to wild rice due to cross-contact/contamination. Therefore, avoid it or check with each manufacturer before consuming, if you are gluten intolerant.
Cross-Contamination (aka Cross-Contact)
Just as in any packaged food, rice may come in contact with other gluten products; thus, contaminating the rice. However, mills don’t usually process wheat, rye, or barley at a rice mill. You can always check for cross-contact/contamination with the manufacturer to make sure it’s safe for you.
When you purchase pre-seasoned rice in boxes, it often contains gluten. Read labels carefully; and if you are super-sensitive to gluten, check with the manufacturer if the rice is tested or made in a facility that also processes gluten. Packaged, frozen, or seasoned uncooked rice may contain wheat or barley. Rice-A-Roni contains wheat-based pasta. Others may contain liquids such as wheat-based soy sauce, gluten-containing Worcestershire sauce,
Again, any product labeled gluten free only means it contains less than 20 ppm gluten. It could be zero, or it might be 15 ppm. You just don’t know. The rice pasta brands that are certified gluten free are you safest brands. However, it all depends on what you can tolerate.
Certified Rice Products
Some certification organizations certify for under 5 ppm while most do so at or under 10 ppm. You can learn all about certification organizations and their logos on my Gluten Free Products List.
All of the above tips may be applied to restaurant rice, as well. However, most people do not have reactions to plain rice. If it is cooked in broth, it may contain gluten. If the rice is Asian-flavored, it may contain gluten as regular soy sauce contains wheat. Other Asian sauces such as sweet and sour may also gluten. However, there are a few brands/varieties that are gluten free. My favorite brand of soy sauce is not soy sauce at all, but tamari sauce, San-J.
Gluten Free Rice Recipes
If you enjoy Indian food, you have to try Tasty Bites rice packets. You can read my review here.
For my gluten free rice recipes and articles, click here.