Are M&Ms Gluten-Free?

If you’re wondering Are M&Ms Gluten Free?, you’ve come to the right place. I’ll walk you through the ins and outs of this beloved candy staple, including whether traditional M&Ms are gluten-free and if there are some varieties to avoid.

A woman holding a bag of M&M's in one hand and some of the candies in the other on a green and white background with text overlay that says "Are M&M's Gluten Free?".

Are M&Ms Gluten Free?

In a word: yes. M&Ms do not contain any gluten ingredients. Your basic bag of milk chocolate M&Ms, manufactured by the Mars Wrigley Company, is free of gluten-containing ingredients. However, it’s important to note that Mars Wrigley does not specifically label any of their products as being certified gluten-free or even simply as gluten-free. At the same time, they state that they will include any gluten-containing ingredients on their labels.

The main sticking point preventing M&Ms from being labeled gluten-free is the cross-contamination factor. In fact, Mars Wrigley has never stated that M&Ms are processed on dedicated gluten-free equipment. So this is something to keep in mind if you want to purchase M&Ms.

Most of the various M&Ms varieties have the same base ingredients, including milk, soy, and chocolate – all of which are gluten-free. However, because they may be manufactured on equipment that is also used to make gluten-containing products, if you are very sensitive you may want to skip M&Ms in favor of another sweet treat.

Bags of plain and peanut M&M's on a white wooden tabletop.

Which M&Ms Are Gluten Free?

Technically, all of the M&Ms varieties except for pretzel M&Ms and some seasonal varieties are gluten-free. But are M&Ms gluten free? Again, if you are worried about cross-contamination, Mars Wrigley does not guarantee that its candies are certified gluten-free.

The M&M varieties that are not made with gluten-containing ingredients include Mini M&Ms, Milk Chocolate M&Ms, Dark Chocolate M&Ms, White Chocolate M&Ms, Peanut Butter M&Ms, Peanut M&Ms, Caramel M&Ms, and Almond M&Ms.

Which M&Ms Are NOT Gluten Free?

There are two M&Ms varieties that clearly contain gluten ingredients: pretzel M&M’s and crispy M&M’s. These flavors contain wheat flour and barley malt, so those on a gluten-free diet should stay away.

Are Plain M&Ms Celiac Safe?

To be on the absolute safe side, plain M&Ms candies, as well as all the other flavors, should not be considered celiac-safe. Because of the possible cross-contamination issues, Mars Wrigley does not label its M&Ms candies as being certified gluten-free. Even though most varieties are free of gluten-containing ingredients, if you have celiac you may not want to take a chance.

Don’t forget to read my post on How to Read Food Labels for a Gluten-Free Diet.

M&M's candies spilling out of a bag of plain M&M's.

Do Chocolate M&Ms Contain Gluten?

The chocolate varieties of M&Ms do not contain any gluten ingredients. You’ll just need to be mindful of potential cross-contamination if you’re very sensitive.

Are Peanut M&Ms Gluten Free?

Similar to chocolate M&Ms, peanut M&Ms are also free of gluten ingredients. Again, cross-contamination could be an issue. So if you are sensitive you may wish to avoid them.

Bags of plain and peanut M&M's on a white wooden tabletop.

Ways to Use M&Ms in Gluten Free Baking

You can throw in some M&Ms into some of my favorite gluten-free recipes, like my Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies, Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies with Chocolate Chips, Gluten Free Monster Bars, or Gluten Free Brookies! Either swap M&Ms for the chocolate chips in these recipes, or do a combination.