There is a lot of confusion in the gluten-free world about Rice Krispies, mainly since the beloved cereal brand used to have a gluten-free version. In this post, I’ll help you decode Rice Krispies for hidden gluten. This post contains affiliate links. Please see my disclosures.
If you’re new to the gluten-free diet and wondering if Kellogg’s Rice Krispies are gluten-free, I have all the details in this article.
Most people assume Rice Krispies are gluten-free; after all, the cereal is made from rice, and rice is naturally gluten-free.
Unfortunately, Kellogg’s Rice Krispies are not gluten-free because it contains malt flavoring, a flavoring derived from barley, and gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye, and barely. Cocoa Krispies and Frosted Krispies also contain malt flavoring and are not gluten-free.
In my article, Beware of Malt and these 21 Potential Sources of Barley (Gluten), you can read more about why hydrolyzed ingredients are not gluten-free.
Remember, even if Nima Sensor, a portable gluten-detecting device, doesn’t detect gluten in Rice Krispies, smart label reading will tell you that the product contains gluten and should be avoided.
What Happened to Gluten-Free Rice Krispies?
You might recall a time when Kellogg’s sold a gluten-free version of its beloved Rice Krispies. It came in a yellow box and was clearly labeled “Gluten Free.”
Unfortunately, Kellogg’s discontinued production of the cereal in March 2015, citing “manufacturing constraints.” And that was the end of gluten-free Rice Krispies.
Are Packaged Rice Krispies Treats Gluten-Free?
Unfortunately, packaged Rice Krispies treats are made from Rice Krispies cereal. This means they also contain barley malt and are not gluten-free.
A good gluten-free Rice Krispies Treats alternative is Made Good Crispy Squares. They’re not only gluten-free, but also they’re organic, vegan, and made with vegetable extracts. They come in Chocolate Chip, Strawberry, Vanilla, and
Gluten-Free Rice Cereal Options
Even though Kellogg’s Rice Krispies cereal is not gluten-free, you can still enjoy crispy rice cereal. Below are a few brands that make crispy rice cereal without gluten:
- Erewhon Brown Rice Cereal – This brown rice cereal is certified gluten-free and tastes like Rice Krispies except without the malt flavoring. I often use this brand when making gluten-free rice cereal treats.
- One Degree Veganic Sprouted Brown Rice Crisps – While these are not certified gluten-free, they are labeled gluten-free and contain no gluten ingredients. These brown rice puffs are a bit larger than you might be used to, but they taste good.
- Nature’s Path Crispy Rice Cereal – This brown rice cereal is certified gluten-free, organic, and non-GMO certified. It is an excellent substitute for Rice Krispies.
- Barbara’s Organic Brown Rice Crisps Cereal – Barbara’s makes gluten-free brown rice crisps that are an alternative to Kellogg’s Rice Krispies. The cereal is not certified gluten-free, but the box says the product is “verified to contain less than 20 ppm of gluten,” which is the FDA-required minimum to label a product as gluten-free.
- Kroger’s Crispy Rice – Kroger’s privately labeled rice crispy alternative is gluten-free. Check the labels of other store brands to see if they’re gluten-free, too.
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