Many of you might be wondering if licorice is gluten free. It looks like it should be gluten free, but most are surprised to learn that the main ingredient in licorice is wheat flour. In this article, I’ll discuss why licorice isn’t gluten free as well as share some brands that are making gluten-free licorice available to all. This post contains affiliate links. Please see my disclosures.
My friend had a party at her house with a beautiful spread of desserts. Since the desserts contained gluten, she thought she would do something special for me. She bought me a large pail of licorice from Costco so I wouldn’t feel left out.
I was fairly new to the gluten-free diet at the time, but I knew enough to turn over the pail to check the ingredient list. Sure enough, wheat flour was the first ingredient.
My friend and I were both shocked. And while I couldn’t enjoy her kind gesture, we both had a big learning moment to never judge a book by its cover, or in this case, never evaluate a food item just because it looks gluten free.
Are Twizzlers and Red Vines Gluten Free?
I’m asked all the time, are Twizzlers gluten free? And are Red Vines gluten free?
The answer is a hard no, they are not.
Twizzlers, made by Hershey, and Red Vines are primarily made of corn syrup and wheat flour, along with a few other ingredients like food dye and additives. This goes for ropes, vines and Nibs. All contain gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye, barley and sometimes oats.
If you can’t enjoy the two leading brands of licorice, is all hope lost?
Not at all.
There are several brands of gluten-free licorice ready to satisfy your craving for the chewy and sweet candy of your childhood.
Next are a few brands of gluten-free licorice worth checking out.
YumEarth Gluten-Free Licorice
YumEarth makes organic, vegan and gluten-free licorice in a variety of flavors, including its original flavor, pomegranate, peach and black licorice.
All YumEarth products are allergy friendly and free from peanuts, gluten, tree nuts, milk, eggs, fish, shellfish and soy. You also won’t find high fructose corn syrup or artificial dyes in these babies.
The licorice looks more like bite-sized nibs than ropes or laces, but the taste is near perfect.
You can purchase YumEarth licorice on Amazon, and I’ve also seen them in Marshall’s and TJ Max at a steal in the past.
Wiley Wallaby Licorice
I recently discovered Wiley Wallaby licorice. I’m impressed with the taste and texture. It’s soft and chewy and has a great flavor and no strange aftertaste.
I also love that Wiley Wallaby licorice contains only one gram of sugar and is certified gluten free by the GFCO.
It’s important to note that ONLY the Very Berry flavor is gluten free despite the fact that it comes in other flavors. And unfortunately, you can only find this flavor on the Wiley Wallaby website. It’s not listed on Amazon yet. Bummer, I know!
Mom’s Place Gluten-Free Licorice
Mom’s Place Gluten Free sells handmade gluten-free licorice along with tons of baking mixes and other gluten-free products and essentials. Everything is certified gluten free.
After publishing this article, several people messaged me to look into Gimbal’s gluten-free licorice. The company makes gluten-free black licorice in the shape of cute Scottie dogs.
Gimbal’s original black licorice is also allergy friendly as they are also peanut-, soy-, dairy-, and egg-free.
Candy Tree Gluten-Free Licorice
Candy Tree, a small family-owned business from Holland, makes organic, GMO-free and gluten-free red and black licorice. It comes in strawberry, cherry and raspberry flavors, in both ropes, laces and bites.
Smart Sweets Gluten-Free Licorice
Another brand of gluten-free licorice is known as Smart Sweets. Not only are the red twists free from gluten, but also they contain only 2 grams of sugar per bag.
They’re also vegan, GMO free, free from artificial flavors and contain no food dyes. On top of that, the product is loaded with soluble plant-based prebiotic fiber and contain 38 percent less calories than other licorice brands.
I encourage you to read the reviews on Amazon before buying. It’s a mixed bag, with many people saying they don’t like the taste.
Selection is Sparse
As you can see, gluten-free licorice is not very common, but it is something you can still enjoy despite eating gluten free.
If you want to make your own gluten-free licorice, if you dare, my friend Nicole at Gluten Free on a Shoestring, will show you how. Nicole says her gluten-free licorice recipe is easy to make, but I think it’s looks pretty involved. Good luck!
Have you found other brands of gluten-free licorice? If so, please leave a comment to share. I will update this article as I learn of more options.
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