Find out if balsamic vinegar is safe for a gluten-free diet, and which brands and options to look for at the store.
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Do you love salads with balsamic vinegar? Or do you have a favorite chicken marinade that calls for balsamic vinegar as an ingredient?
This complex, dark, and rich vinegar has a unique flavor that’s great in a variety of dishes. It’s great with salads, chicken, in glazes, and even served with strawberries. It’s truly versatile for both sweet and savory dishes.
If you follow a gluten-free diet, you may have been wondering if this ingredient is gluten-free. After all, you know that being gluten-free means having to check just about every ingredient that goes into your body just to be safe.
In this post, we’re going to talk about balsamic vinegar and how it fits into a gluten-free diet. We’ll talk about what balsamic vinegar is, what it’s made of, and if it’s gluten-free. We’ll wrap the post up with a few gluten-free balsamic vinegar brands you can look for at the grocery store.
Let’s get to it!
What is balsamic vinegar?
Balsamic vinegar is a type of vinegar that has a unique flavor. It is dark in color, almost maroon, and can be used as in salad dressings, reduced into a glaze, and used in a variety of dishes.
Balsamic vinegar also works well as a marinade for meat and chicken. It has a sweet rich flavor compared to other vinegars.
What is balsamic vinegar made of?
Balsamic vinegar can be made in two ways: the traditional method and the modern method.
The traditional method uses only grape must, which is the juice from pressed grapes. This juice is boiled, fermented, acidified, then aged in wooden barrels.
The modern method that’s used for large producers of balsamic vinegar is where concentrated grape must, the juice from pressed grapes, is mixed with wine vinegar. This process works much faster than the traditional method, taking only about 2 months to 3 years versus the 12 to 25 years that the traditional method takes.
What is gluten?
Gluten is a protein found in most wheat products, and acts as the “glue” that helps to hold wheat, barley, kamut, spelt, farro, durum, bulgur, rye, and semolina together to maintain their shape.
You can find gluten in whole grains, but also in many processed foods as well. If you purchase wheat bread, there will be gluten in it, because wheat by nature has gluten.
Many processed foods have hidden gluten in them in the form of gluten or wheat derivatives. These are also in the form of flavorings, binders to keep ingredients together, or other additives.
Is balsamic vinegar gluten-free?
Balsamic vinegar is naturally gluten-free as grapes and the other ingredients used in fermentation are gluten-free. If you follow a gluten-free diet, you can safely enjoy these balsamic vinegar options you can find at stores and restaurants:
- Balsamic vinegar
- Balsamic vinegar of Modena
- Balsamic glaze
- White balsamic vinegar
- Traditional balsamic vinegar
Is balsamic vinaigrette gluten-free?
Balsamic vinaigrettes are most likely going to be gluten-free, as this type of salad dressing would combine balsamic vinegar, oil, and seasonings. Assuming the seasonings do not contain gluten, this type of dressing is safe for a gluten-free diet.
It’s always a good idea to review ingredients lists before purchasing anything pre-made in a bottle or other packaging. Look for any hidden names of gluten or any notes that say “contains wheat” under the ingredients list.
Are my favorite brands of balsamic vinegar gluten-free?
You might be wondering if your favorite brands of balsamic vinegar contain gluten. Let’s talk about some popular options and if they’re safe.
Is Heinz balsamic vinegar gluten-free?
Heinz balsamic vinegar contains no gluten ingredients or has any allergen warnings on their product. Though the packaging doesn’t specifically say it’s gluten-free, you can feel good about this product. Heinz typically does a great job of labeling their foods with gluten.
Is Bertolli balsamic vinegar of Modena gluten-free?
According to the Bertolli website, their “vinegars are made with only grape derivatives – no glucose or other ingredients.” This statement is alongside a gluten-free label. We can feel confident that this product is safe for a gluten-free diet.
Gluten-free balsamic vinegar brands
Since we now know that balsamic vinegar is safe for a gluten-free diet, I won’t go through every single brand there is available on the market that’s gluten-free. But to give you a few ideas, here are some options you can look for at the grocery store.
- Alessi Balsamic Vinegar
- Bertolli Balsamic Vinegar of Modena
- Colavita Balsamic Vinegar of Modena
- Filippo Berio Balsamic Vinegar
- Monari Federzoni Balsamic Vinegar of Modena
- Pompeian Balsamic Vinegar
- Primal Kitchen Balsamic Vinegar
- Spectrum Balsamic Vinegar of Modena
- Star Balsamic Vinegar
- Thrive Market Balsamic Vinegar
Looking for more gluten-free salad dressing options? Check out this list of types and brands.
I hope that if you’ve been looking for answers about balsamic vinegar and how it fits into your gluten-free diet that this post has put your mind at ease. Balsamic vinegar is naturally gluten-free, so you can confidently enjoy this ingredient anytime.
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