I’ve been eating a gluten free diet for nearly 2 years now, since I discovered I have a serious intolerance to gluten.
It’s not much fun, and not something to do unless you have a compelling medical reason – not least because gluten free food is such a minefield! Breads tend to be soft and crumbly, and biscuits crispy and greasy. And no one supermarket has their entire range nailed. My weekly shop often takes me around 3-4 different supermarkets as I hunt for the items I know taste relatively normal.
Having eaten my way through most of the gluten free ranges on offer, I reckon I can offer up this list as the ideal gluten free shop. Enjoy!
1. Genius Triple Seeded Sandwich Loaf (Sainsburys / Waitrose / Tesco)
In my opinion, this is the best gluten free bread out there. It tastes normal, it doesn’t crumble, you can actually chew it and it toasts beautifully. It is worth working your way through the loaves on offer though to try and find the one that is most floured and has the widest girth as those two markers seem to indicate whether the loaf has massive air holes in it or not (the bain of gluten free loaf making!).
2. Waitrose Free From Gluten Pasta
This is the best gluten free pasta out there and easily trumps the posh brands (like Dove’s farm). It cooks up to a lovely al dente texture and with a bit of oil drizzled over it after straining, you’d have trouble working out if it was gf or not.
3. No-G Range (Sainsburys)
Pretty much all of this range is outstanding. But my favourites are the beef pie and the cheese and bacon quiche. Definitely one to try if you miss pastry!
4. Dove’s Farm Organic Fibre Flakes (Sainsburys)
I used to eat a fibre-based cereal and really missed the taste and crunch, but this filled the gap nicely. The flakes stay crispy in milk, and taste spot on with a handful of raisins.
5. Nature’s Path Gluten Free Granola Mixed Berry (Sainsburys / Waitrose)
This is so good even my non-gf other half is addicted. If we buy a packet it disappears surprisingly quickly! The yogurt chunks taste like white chocolate chunks so its a perfect topping for a yogurt-based dessert.
6. Udi’s bagels (Sainsburys / Waitrose)
Toasted, these taste pretty much exactly like real bagels taste. Ideal for a filling of smoked salmon and cream cheese. Most places seem to sell the plain variety, but the whole grain ones are a real treat if you can find them.
7. Sainsbury Free From Oaty Muesli
I’m a bit fussy about muesli – I basically like something oat-based with lots of raisins – and this fills that brief. The pumpkin seeds add a nice crunch, and the sultanas are not too sultana-y.
8. Sainsbury Free From Hot Cross Buns
Fluffy, chewy, perfectly spiced, full of fruit and amazing toasted with a scrape of butter.
9. Sainsbury Free From Fish Fingers
I really miss big thick chunky fish fingers but these are 80% of the way there. They cook up nice and crispy, but I would suggest giving them an extra 10 minutes.
10. Amy’s Kitchen Gluten Free Rice Mac & Cheese
Gluten free ready meals aren’t up to much on the whole, but this is a great freezer staple. Super cheesy and no artificial ingredients.
11. M&S Gluten Free Crumbed Cod Fillets
Deep fried or traditionally breaded items tend to be off the menu for gluten free people, so it was quite exciting when we discovered these! They do taste healthier than your regular fish and chip shop fish but that’s no bad thing!
12. Dietary Special Gluten Free Custard Creams (Sainsburys)
I reckon these are indistinguishable from the glutinous version! Crunchy without being crispy, and the filling is smooth and very tasty.
13. M&S Gluten Free Victoria Sponge Cake
This doesn’t look particularly tasty in its back, but once its out this is a brilliant gluten free cake – light with a creamy filling and tasty jam.
14. Udi’s Gluten Free Chocolate Sandwich Cookies (Waitrose)
These taste exactly like Oreos! Winner.
Honorary Mention: Doves Farm gluten-free plain flour blend
Generally useful to have around!