Let’s answer the question, Are Marshmallows Gluten Free? We’ll cover which brands are safe, ingredients to avoid, contamination risks, and whether marshmallows are safe for celiacs.
Marshmallows are a must for s’mores and Rice Krispie treats, but are they gluten-free?
The quick answer is: Yes, many marshmallow brands in the US are naturally gluten-free. These squishy confections are mostly made from sugar, water, and gelatin. Meaning that when you find yourself roasting marshmallows over the fire or baking them into your favorite desserts, chances are good that they’re safe to eat for those with gluten sensitivities.
However, as anyone who’s celiac or gluten-intolerant will tell you, gluten can lurk in unexpected places. Certain ingredients like glucose syrup and wheat starch, for example, found in some marshmallow brands, are not gluten-free. Always check those labels!
Let’s have a look at more ingredients to look out for, cross-contamination risks, and whether marshmallows are truly safe for celiacs.
Related: Are Rice Krispies Gluten Free?
Many, but not all, marshmallows you’ll find in stores are fine to eat. Some brands contain ingredients derived from wheat and therefore should be avoided if you’re particularly sensitive to gluten.
The only way to know whether a marshmallow brand is gluten-free is to check the labels. Ingredients to watch out for include:
Wheat starch and glucose syrup, as they’re derived from wheat. Any ingredients with the words “wheat”, “barley”, or “rye” contain gluten and aren’t safe to eat. The same goes for malt syrup, flavorings, dyes, modified starches, and additives. These can sometimes contain traces of hidden gluten.
If you’re uncertain about a particular brand or label, you can always refer to the company website or contact the company directly. See below for marshmallow brands that are considered gluten-free!
While they aren’t specifically labeled as gluten-free, Kraft Jet-Puffed marshmallows are generally considered safe for gluten-free diets. This is because the ingredients list doesn’t contain any references to gluten, and Kraft has said that there is no risk of cross-contamination on the manufacturing line.
I’ll use Jet-Puffed marshmallows in recipes like these Homemade Rice Krispie Treats and Gluten Free Rocky Road Squares.
Aside from Kraft Jet-Puffed, below is a list of more manufacturers that are considered to be safely gluten-free:
Doumak is the number one marshmallow company in the US, and their Campfire brand marshmallows are found just about everywhere. According to the company website, all of Doumak’s products are gluten-free.
Trader Joe’s regular marshmallows are labeled as gluten-free, vegan, and kosher on the company website. They’re free from artificial flavors and preservatives, making them generally safe for gluten-free diets.
Dandies vegan vanilla marshmallows are gluten-free according to the company’s website. They’re also made with no corn syrup, no gelatin, and no artificial colors or flavors.
Like marshmallows, most, but not all, brands of marshmallow fluff are gluten-free. For example, Fluff Brand marshmallow creme of “Fluffernutter” sandwich fame is considered to be free from gluten. However, always refer to the labels to know for sure. While many marshmallow products are safe for gluten intolerances, they’re not necessarily suitable for celiacs (see below).
Cross-contamination is where things get tricky. Even though certain marshmallow brands don’t contain any gluten, they are sometimes manufactured on production lines that come into contact with other gluten products. While the trace amounts of gluten are often low in this case, this means that for some brands, they’re never zero.
So, while minor cross-contamination may go unnoticed by people with mild sensitivities to gluten, it may be unsafe for those with celiac disease. More on this in the next section.
For the most part, yes. As you’ll find above, many traditional marshmallow brands are free from gluten and therefore considered safe for celiacs. That being said, there is sometimes the risk of cross-contamination with gluten-containing ingredients. For this reason, if you’re celiac or highly sensitive to gluten, it’s worthwhile to consult your doctor and take any necessary precautions.
The bottom line is, marshmallows are largely safe for those with celiac and non-celiac gluten sensitivity. The next time you have a campfire, you can safely stock up on your favorite gluten-free brands and whip up some Gluten-Free Graham Crackers for s’mores!
Always keep in mind that cross-contamination does pose a risk, however small, for some brands of marshmallows. If you’re still unsure, check in with a health professional to know what’s best for you.
Welcome to Cupcakes & Kale Chips, where I share gluten free recipes & kid-tested family favorites!