I’m something of an obsessive. So when my doctor instructed me to cut gluten out of my diet, I hit the gluten-free bandwagon hard. I sought out gluten-free restaurants, broke the bank at gluten-free shops, read gluten-free books, and pored over as many gluten-free products as I could find online.
Lucky for those of us with some form of gluten issue — from celiac sufferers to Paleo dieters — there are some truly amazing gluten-free alternatives out there. What follows are strictly the hits — my all-time favorite gluten-free snacks from years of daily snacking. Some of them are remade versions of the standard, gluten-containing fare, made with rice flour or potato or corn; others are naturally just gluten-free. All are delicious.
Crunchmaster Multi-Seed Crackers, 2-Pack ($11)
These Crunchmaster crackers are as delicious as any cracker, period. I love to put these on a cheese plate next to regular, glutenous crackers, and see how my gluten-skeptic guests devour them. They’re always the first to go! Crunchy like a rice cracker, but with a flavor closer to Wheat Thins. They’re great to dip, too, and are a perfect vehicle for hummus. I always have these around because they’re so versatile and delicious — and they come in a resealable bag to keep them fresh. They’re available in a range of flavors, and I’ve yet to try one that I don’t like. Try original or a variety pack.
Snyder’s of Hanover Gluten Free Pretzels, 2-Pack ($20)
I could not believe my eyes when I saw these in a suburban grocery store.
Snyder’s of Hanover pretzels were one of my favorite snacks growing up, and here they were, gluten-free. These pretzels taste just like the originals — rich, hearty, traditional pretzels with a great crunch. Other brands make fine gluten-free pretzels, too, but these are by far the best. Honey Mustard & Onion is particularly hard to find, and particularly delicious, though the regular salted ones are fantastic, too.
Tate’s Bake Shop Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies ($9)
Just as Snyder’s makes the best pretzels, gluten-free or otherwise, Tate’s makes truly delicious cookies. Their gluten-free chocolate-chip cookies taste so good. The same buttery, crispy goodness — even the most discerning cookie aficionados can’t taste the difference between gluten-free and regular versions. Oh, and they make for tasty homemade ice-cream sandwiches, too.
RXBAR Whole Food Protein Bar, Variety Pack ($38)
I frigging love these bars. Healthy, delicious, and filling, RXBARs are made from only a handful of ingredients, all delightfully messaged on the front. And none of them is wheat. I carry a few of these with me whenever I’m traveling — the perfect alternative to an airplane snack or continental breakfast. They come in a plethora of flavors — for me, Chocolate Sea Salt and Chocolate Coconut are tops.
Simple Mills Farmhouse Cheddar Snack Crackers, Pack of 3 ($13)
Simple Mills makes a delicious, nut-based alternative Cheez-It. Simply delicious for a snack or a craving. I find these difficult to have around because I eat them so quickly.
Bamba Peanut Snack, 8 Count ($8)
Bamba is the most famous snack food you’ve never heard of. Apparently, it accounts for something like 25 percent of snack-food sales in Israel. Imagine a cheese puff, but instead of cheese, the taste of delicious peanut butter. These are a great way to introduce peanuts to babies. (I snatched my first Bamba from a friend’s baby.) They’re good to have around the house, for you and any kids who might come around.
Justin’s Almond Butter, Honey Squeeze Packs, 10-Pack ($11)
I once heard Khloé Kardashian say that the secret to her dramatic weight loss was the stash of Justin’s Almond Butter packets in her glove compartment. So I bought a box and ate three packets in a row. Not quite the best way to get trim, but delicious on a sliced apple or for a quick protein fix.
Popcorn Indiana Movie Theater Popcorn, 4-Pack ($28)
Some people struggle with knowing what has gluten in it and what doesn’t, and I get a lot of questions about if corn is okay. Corn is great! So is popcorn. Especially this Popcorn Indiana popcorn. It’s hands down the best bagged popcorn that money can buy. It tastes like you’re at the movies. If you try this, I will have ruined all other bagged popcorn for you. Sorry.
Glutino Gluten-Free Toaster Pastry, 5 Count ($10)
Nothing reminds me of my childhood mornings like a Pop-Tart. Here’s the gluten-free version.
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