Friday, June 12, 2015

Gluten-free Grilling

It sure seems like we get busy this time of year, doesn’t it? As soon as summer activities wind down, we dive right into back-to-school craziness, and before we know it, cold weather is upon us again! Luckily, we've got one more chance to soak up the fading, summer sun, and what better way to do so, than by celebrating with a Labor Day cookout?!

By now most of us know that by itself, meat is generally the safest of havens for gluten-free folks, but that doesn’t mean missteps are impossible or caution can be eliminated. Whether you’re attending a barbeque or doing the grilling yourself this Labor Day weekend, a list of tips to ensure everything that’s supposed to be gluten free stays that way, couldn’t hurt! Here are a few ideas:
  • Cross contamination is your No. 1 enemy – It’s common for grill racks to be shared amongst several different foods, so watch carefully for what’s placed where, and when. Separate utensils for turning gluten and non-gluten products are a must, as is a clean grill (soap and water are a much better method than an old bristle brush that could contain crumbs), and tinfoil for placing beneath gluten-free dishes. 
  • Beer + meat = sneakiness – While watching out for marinades that may contain gluten is a widely accepted practice, what about that beer can chicken or those beer brats? Those are two backdoor ways gluten can slip into places you don’t want it. And those gluten-free beers? Even some of those are made with malted wheat or barley, which could present issues for those with Celiac disease. Be mindful of these often-overlooked issues, whether you’re drinking those brews, or using them for added moisture in your meats!
  • Not all meats are fully gluten free – That huge porterhouse, when kept away from any contaminants, yes, that big guy is gluten free. But, several other popular grilled meats can present trouble for the gluten-free crowd: veggie burgers, turkey burgers, hot dogs and sausages can contain filler product that may house gluten, so make sure to check labels before digging in.
Below are links to sites with additional, and more detailed, tips and tricks for making this Labor Day barbecue a good one. And, what’s a good cookout without a new dish thrown in for kicks? We’ve also included a link to some great gluten-free grilling recipes, to guarantee less guessing when grilling for your weekend celebration!

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