Baked beans are great to keep in the pantry for a last-minute side dish. They go great with many meals, especially meaty ones like ribs, burgers, and hot dogs.
Beans don’t have gluten naturally, but what about baked beans? Are baked beans gluten free? Now you’ll be able to find out if you can safely eat them when you have an intolerance, sensitivity, or celiac disease.
While all kinds of beans themselves are naturally gluten free, that doesn’t mean baked beans are gluten free. (Don't worry; I list some gluten-free brands below for you!)
What Are Baked Beans?
Baked beans have been part of North American cuisine for quite some time. They were initially made with white beans, which were indigenous to the settlers. In the 17th century, the colonists in New England began adding them to their meals.
While most people use navy beans when making baked beans from scratch, they can be made with Great Northern beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, cannellini beans, or even black beans.
Usually, maple syrup is added to sweeten up the sauce. However, now, molasses and brown sugar are used to get that signature sweet taste and thick texture.
While you are here, check out all of my meal ingredients to see what is gluten free.
Answer: Are Baked Beans Gluten Free?
The answer can be complicated. Some brands of baked beans are gluten free, and some are not. Gluten can get into beans in a few unsuspecting ways.
Unfortunately, cross-contamination in the processing and packaging steps may mean you could be gobbling up gluten with your baked beans.
Baked beans are not always gluten free. Even if no gluten gets in with the beans during farming, processing, and packaging, vinegar or liquid smoke may be added, bringing gluten into the picture.
To choose gluten-free baked beans, you need to read the labels. Avoid protein additives like wheat, seitan, TVP, and hydrolyzed plant protein.
Texture additives like flour, vegetable gum, and starches should also be avoided. Put the can back on the shelf if you see flavor enhancers that list miso, spices, flavoring, or seasonings. You don’t want to risk it like that unless the can of baked beans you’re holding in your hand is labeled gluten-free.
Fortunately, a few brands of baked beans are gluten-free, allowing you a safe way to eat baked beans from a can.
If you love rice and beans, also check to be sure the rice is gluten free.
What Brands of Baked Beans Are Gluten Free?
- Amy’s Baked Beans
- B&M Baked Beans
- Bush’s Best Baked Beans
- Heinz Baked Beans
Ways To Use Baked Beans:
Baked beans can be used in so many ways.
- You can make chili with baked beans.
- Top them on nachos with cheese and all the toppings.
- Make ham and bean soup, or serve them on the side of any meal to round it out. They’re great for backyard barbecues and parties!
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