Is vinegar gluten free?

Vinegar is usually gluten free, but read the caveats below.
Is vinegar gluten free?

Photo by Rainer Zenz

Almost all types of vinegar, including vinegar made from gluten grains, is gluten free. This is because the distillation process breaks down the gluten and eliminates it, like with distilled alcohol. Vinegar generally tests well below the 20 parts per million that is considered safe internationally. However, there are those who claim to have a reaction to vinegar anyway. So if you are particularly sensitive or if you just want to be absolutely safe, you may want to avoid any vinegar that originated from gluten grains. But it is not something that most people need to worry about at all.

The FDA does not have any standards which define which ingredients can be used to make vinegar. However, they do have definitions for different types of vinegar for labeling purposes. These include apple cider vinegar, wine vinegar, spirit or grain vinegar, and malt vinegar as listed below.

If vinegar actually contains wheat, barley, or rye, it will be listed on the label. This is true even when this type of vinegar is used as an ingredient in another product, such as condiments. If the label only says “vinegar,” with no specific ingredients, it must be apple cider vinegar.

Is malt vinegar gluten free?

Malt vinegar is not gluten free.
Is malt vinegar gluten free?

Photo by Paul Shannon

This is the major exception. Malt vinegar, also known as alegar, is made from barley malt ale, and it is not distilled. Since barley is a gluten grain, malt vinegar contains gluten. This one you definitely want to avoid. The other thing you want to check for are vinegars which had malt added after the distillation process. If the barley malt itself has not been distilled, the vinegar is not gluten free. Beer vinegar also falls into this category.

Is apple cider vinegar gluten free?

Apple cider vinegar is gluten free.
Is apple cider vinegar gluten free?

Photo by maic2010

Apple cider vinegar, also known as apple vinegar or cider vinegar, is made from apple cider. No gluten grains were ever involved, so it is safe to eat on a gluten free diet. Additionally, if the ingredient list on a product says only “vinegar,” it is required by the FDA to be apple cider vinegar.

Is distilled white vinegar gluten free?

Distilled white vinegar is gluten free.

White vinegar is also known as spirit vinegar or grain vinegar. It is made by the fermentation of distilled alcohol. White vinegar can be made from pretty much any starch, including gluten grains. In the United States, most white vinegars are made from corn. In many other countries, barley malt is commonly used.

Keep in mind that manufacturers are not required to disclose whether gluten grains were used to make the vinegar. This is because the distillation process is considered to render it safe. If you are extremely sensitive to gluten, contact the manufacturer to be sure.

Is rice vinegar gluten free?

Rice vinegar is gluten free.

Rice vinegar is made from rice, which is gluten free. Plain rice vinegar is safe to eat. Be careful, however, that other grains have not been added in the form of added flavorings. Black vinegar can be made from rice, wheat, millet, sorghum, or any combination.

Is wine vinegar gluten free?

Red wine vinegar and white wine vinegar is gluten free.

Wine vinegar, or grape vinegar, is made from red or white wine, which in turn is made from grapes. There are individual varieties of wine vinegar, including Champagne vinegar and sherry vinegar. Like apple cider vinegar, no gluten grains were ever involved. It is gluten free and safe to eat.

Is balsamic vinegar gluten free?

Balsamic vinegar is gluten free.
Is balsamic vinegar gluten free?

Photo by JacobEnos

Balsamic vinegar is not a vinegar in the usual sense, as it is made from grape juice aged in wooden casks. Traditional balsamic vinegar is aged for a minimum of 12 years and sometimes for 25 years or more. There’s a minute possibility that gluten based paste used to seal the casks might contaminate the vinegar. However, only extremely sensitive individuals would be bothered by it. It still tests well below 20 parts per million. For the most part, it is safe to eat on a gluten free diet.

Some imitation balsamic vinegar is simply wine vinegar with additional ingredients like flavoring or thickeners to simulate traditional balsamic vinegar. Check the label to be sure what you have. Only traditional balsamic vinegar is permitted by the EU to be labeled as Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale.

Is cane vinegar gluten free?

Cane vinegar is gluten free.

Cane vinegar, or sugar vinegar, is made from sugar, which are gluten free. Some manufacturers of gluten free products use cane vinegar. Vinegar can also be made from molasses or honey, though these are less common.

Are flavored vinegars gluten free?

 Flavored vinegars may or may not be gluten free.

Flavored vinegars include fruit, herb, spice, and sweetened vinegars. Flavored vinegars vary from product to product. Many are safe, but some are not. Always check the ingredients to be sure. Some may contain malt vinegar, which will be shown in the ingredients. You can always make your own to be sure you know what’s in it.

Other vinegars

Some other vinegars which are gluten free as long as no other ingredients have been added are coconut vinegar, date vinegar, black currant vinegar, raspberry vinegar, quince vinegar, tomato vinegar, persimmon vinegar, jujube vinegar, wolfberry vinegar, rose apple vinegar, Job’s tears vinegar, kiwifruit vinegar, kombucha vinegar, palm vinegar, raisin vinegar, and sinamak vinegar.

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Information contained on this website should not be construed as as medical advice. This site is designed to be of assistance in planning diets for people like me, who suffer from gluten intolerance and wheat allergies. You should always seek help from a medical professional to determine your level of gluten sensitivity and what steps you need to take to keep yourself healthy.

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