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I get it. Life is already tough enough when you’re met with a groan and eye roll from every waiter when you politely ask about the restaurant’s gluten-free options. And don’t get me started on the fact that every grocery run is automatically lengthened due to the fact that you’re committed to meticulously scanning dozens of labels to see if you can find a “Certified Gluten Free” logo or “Made in a facility that also produces wheat.” Although “gluten-free” has made a somewhat misguided transition from being a serious health problem to a blanket statement that’s interchangeable for “healthy,” not all gluten-free foods are good for you just because they eschew those dreaded wheat proteins. (Yes, they’re types of proteins!)
Side Note: I just want to say that I feel confident in this list as I myself follow a gluten-free diet. I don’t have celiac I have what is called non-celiac gluten sensitivity. I hope this list is helpful for you? If you have any questions please feel free in reaching out and I will be more than happy to answer any concerns or questions you may have. You can find all of my links at the end of today’s post or you can always comment on the post itself.
So, to help you navigate the choppy waters of the gluten-free world because i’ve been gluten-free for 3 years now, I’ve gathered collected some -approved gluten-free snacks (along with their horrible counterparts). Our top picks are free of scary additives and chemicals, low in sugar, and high in protein and fiber—two macronutrients that will make it much easier to keep your mind off your rumbling stomach.
** Disclaimer today’s post contains affiliate links. By purchasing using my link I do make a small commission and you help me keep my blog running. Thank You for supporting my site.**
Pure Organic Ancient Grains Vanilla Almond Bar
Per 1 bar (35 g): 160 calories, 8 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 45 mg sodium, 18 g carbs (2 g fiber, 6 g sugar), 5 g protein
This certified gluten-free bar blends protein-packed nuts, quinoa, and amaranth with flax and hemp seeds, both of which promote cardiovascular health because of their potent anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids. This portable snack makes it easy to be prepared; it has just enough sugar to calm your hanger and the right amount of healthy fats and protein to keep hunger from striking again too quickly.
SHOP NOW: $23.88 for a pack of 12, amazon.com
LARABAR Coconut Cream Pie
Per 1 bar (48 g): 210 calories, 10 g fat (7 g saturated fat), 5 mg sodium, 31 g carbs (5 g fiber, 24 g sugar), 3 g protein
Even though this is one of the top-selling gluten-free products on Amazon, I regrettably have to dub it a “No.” Even though it’s made with five simple ingredients (including dates, coconut, almonds, and cashews), it contains 24 grams of sugar—which is excessive to consume in one sitting for only providing 5 grams of digestion-slowing fiber. It’s not an everyday snack, but you can certainly reserve it for a post-workout treat once in a blue moon.
Glutenfreeda’s Apple Almond Honey Granola
Per ⅓ cup: 160 calories, 5 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 60 mg sodium, 25 g carbs (4 g fiber, 6 g sugar), 4 g protein
Bits of apples and almonds give this granola a fall (which I can get behind.. I love fall) vibe; besides topping your favorite Greek yogurt, feel free to sprinkle a serving atop mashed sweet potatoes for a killer casserole.
SHOP NOW: amazon.com
Gluten Free Chex Granola Mix: Honey Nut
Per ⅓ cup: 130 calories, 4 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 35 mg sodium, 20 g carbs (2 g fiber, 7 g sugar), 2 g protein
Not That!: It might be lower in calories, but Chex’s gluten-free granola is also lacking where it matters: on the protein and fiber front. We’re also not pleased by Chex’s addition of BHT: University of California-Berkeley researchers say this petroleum-derived antioxidant is linked to an increased risk of cancer in animals. It’s hard to say whether these effects would be prevalent in humans, but experts say to avoid it as much as possible to err on the side of caution.
Ancient Harvest Organic Gluten-Free Quinoa-Corn White Cheddar Mac & Cheese
Per 1 cup (74 g): 270 calories, 2 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 400 mg sodium, 59 g carbs (2 g fiber, 2 g sugar), 4 g protein
Ancient Harvest’s quinoa- and corn-based gluten-free macaroni can be topped with a low-sodium and low-fat blend of white cheddar cheese. If you’re looking to boost the protein content of your mac and cheese, simply add some reduced-fat milk!
SHOP NOW: $26.31 amazon.com
Horizon Gluten-Free Macaroni & White Cheddar Cheese
Per 1 cup (71 g): 280 calories, 5 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 540 mg sodium, 46 g carbs (2 g fiber, 2 g sugar), 10 g protein
While I certainly commend Horizon for using a blend of lentils, rice, and corn for their gluten-free pasta, I’m disappointed by their high sodium content, which is one of the highest in the market.
Udi’s GF Three Cheese Pizza
Per ½ pizza (142 g): 360 calories, 15 g fat (9 g saturated fat), 570 mg sodium, 45 g carbs (2 g fiber, 6 g sugar), 12 g protein
Pick up this gluten-free standard, made with brown rice flour and a blend of mozzarella, fontina, and romano cheeses, from the freezer section. If you’re not concerned with blood-pressure and see a brand known as Smart Flour, we’d also recommend their pick, but it’s a little higher in sodium.
SHOP NOW: $9.99, target.com
Glutino GF Duo Cheese Pizza
Per 1 pizza (175 g): 410 calories, 19 g fat (8 g saturated fat), 660 mg sodium, 48 g carbs (3 g fiber, 4 g sugar), 12 g protein
Don’t be a glutton with this personal pizza. Glutino’s single-serving pies are consistently higher in calories and fat than the competition. Also, it doesn’t taste good.
Glutenfreeda Apple Cinnamon with Flax
Per-packet (50 g): 180 calories, 2.5 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 110 mg sodium, 35 g carbs (4 g fiber, 8 g sugar), 6 g protein
If you’re looking for plain gluten-free instant oatmeal packets, you’re pretty safe picking up an option from Arrowhead Mills, Nature’s Path, Bob’s Red Mill, or Purely Elizabeth. But when it comes to flavors, make an effort to grab this Apple Cinnamon oatmeal from Glutenfreeda. Made with fiber-rich flax seeds, it’s low in calories and sugar while being high in fiber and protein, making it the perfect morning meal.
Bakery on Main Gluten Free Apple Pie Flavor Instant Oatmeal
Per-packet (50 g): 200 calories, 3 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 40 mg sodium, 36 g carbs (5 g fiber, 11 g sugar), 6 g protein
Apple Pie Oatmeal from Bakery on Main is higher in sugar and calories than its Eat This counterpart.
Ian’s Natural Foods GF Breaded Chicken Tenders
Per 3 oz (85 g): 160 calories, 6 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 210 mg sodium, 7 g carbs (< 1 g fiber, 0 g sugar), 20 g protein
These chicken tenders are made from actual chicken tender meat (or breast meat) and not shredded rib meat! Then they’re breaded with a batter of corn flour and Italian seasonings. The result is a protein-packed dinner that’s low in sodium, fat, carbs, and calories.
SHOP NOW: Whole Foods Market
Perdue SimplySmart GF Breaded Chicken Breast Tenders
Per 4 tenders: 210 calories, 11 g fat (2 g saturated fat), 520 mg sodium, 16 g carbs (0 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 13 g protein
They might be called “tenders,” but the part of the chicken which is actually called the “tender” isn’t even used in this product. Instead, it’s chicken breast with rib meat, which is then coated in rice flour and cornmeal. Compared to Ian’s, Perdue’s offering is much higher in sodium, which won’t help you with that belly bloat.
Bisquick Gluten Free Pancake Mix
Per 1/3 cup mix: 140 calories, 0.5 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 340 mg sodium, 31 g carbs (1 g fiber, 3 g sugar), 2 g protein
I love a store-bought product with an ingredient list that’s limited to foods you can find in your pantry. Bisquick’s Gluten Free Pancake mix fits the bill and is much lower in carbs and sodium.
SHOP NOW: $25.71 for a pack of 6, amazon.com
King Arthur Flour GF Pancake Mix
Per 1/3 cup mix: 180 calories, 0.5 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 430 mg sodium, 41 g carbs (1 g fiber, 3 g sugar), 2 g protein
For the same size serving, you consume an extra 40 calories and 10 grams of carbs by choosing King Arthur’s mix over Bisquick’s.
Rice Chex GF Cereal
Per 1 cup (27 g): 100 calories, 0.5 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 220 mg sodium, 23 g carbs (1 g fiber, 2 g sugar), 2 g protein
Chex keeps things simple by using just whole grain rice, sugar, salt, molasses, and a vitamin and mineral blend in this easy-to-please gluten-free staple. The short ingredient list and low sugar content mean it’s significantly better than the “good-for-you” cereals that are anything but.
SHOP NOW: $2.50, amazon.com
Special K Touch of Brown Sugar Gluten Free
Per 1 cup (49 g): 180 calories, 1 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 180 mg sodium, 42 g carbs (5 g fiber, 9 g sugar), 3 g protein
For the same sized cup of cereal, you’d scarf down an extra 80 calories, 20 grams of carbs, and 7 grams of sugar (probably from the addition of sugar, brown sugar syrup, honey, dried invert cane syrup, and molasses) by choosing Special K’s gluten-free option over Rice Chex. Skip it.
Straw Propeller Maple Oats
Per container (63 g): 198 calories, 3 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 140 mg sodium, 34 g carbs (5 g fiber, 6 g sugar), 7 g protein
Oatmeal is not only a breakfast of champions, but it’s also a great snack to stash in your desk drawer. Go gourmet with Straw Propeller, which makes their cup of instant oatmeal with gluten-free rolled oats, organic maple sugar, and sea salt.
SHOP NOW: Currently Unavailable on Amazon
Bob’s Red Mill GF Brown Sugar & Maple Oatmeal Cup
Per cup (61 g): 240 calories, 5 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 310 mg sodium, 43 g carbs (7 g fiber, 10 g sugar), 7 g protein
I love Bob’s Red Mill as much as any foodie, but I was disappointed to see they use “caramel color” and “natural maple flavor” instead of real maple syrup to flavor and color their instant mix.
Betty Crocker Yellow GF Cake Mix
Per 1/10 package (43 g): 150 calories, 0 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 230 mg sodium, 37 g carbs (0 g fiber, 17 g sugar), 1 g protein
Go with Betty Crocker’s simple yellow cake mix for all your sweet tooth needs. Even though it has a larger serving size than our “Not That!” pick, it still has less sugar and fewer calories!
SHOP NOW: $28.74 for a pack of 6
Duncan Hines GF Vanilla Creme Cake
Per 1/16 package (34 g): 210 calories, 9 g fat (4.5 g saturated fat), 150 mg sodium, 32 g carbs (0 g fiber, 21 g sugar), 2 g protein
Like I said before, “gluten-free” should not be synonymous with “healthy.” This is the perfect example of that. Duncan Hines’ cake mix is gluten-free, but that doesn’t erase the negatives of stuffing a cake full of shortening, sugar, inflammatory carrageenan, artificial flavor, and artificial dyes Yellow 5 and Yellow 6.
Banza Chickpea Spaghetti
Per 2 oz (85 g): 190 calories, 3.5 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 60 mg sodium, 32 g carbs (8 g fiber, 5 g sugar), 14 g protein
Who knew you could have a helping of pasta and also get a full serving of veggies? That’s exactly what will happen when you grab a box of Banza’s chickpea spaghetti. I’m just glad that the legume-based pasta trend has caught on!
Barilla Gluten Free Spaghetti
Per 2 oz (56 g): 200 calories, 1 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 0 mg sodium, 44 g carbs (1 g fiber, 0 g sugar), 4 g protein
Besides corn and rice flour, there are a couple of nasty ingredients lurking in this gluten-free spaghetti: mono- and diglycerides. These man-made additives often contain the same artery-clogging trans fats that the FDA decided to ban in June 2018. The only reason these ingredients are allowed in your food is that the FDA reviewed the evidence and concluded that we don’t consume enough of them to count as hazardous; however, that “evidence” hasn’t been updated since 1975.
Snyder’s of Hanover Gluten Free Mini Pretzels
Per 25 pretzels (30 g): 120 calories, 2 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 470 mg sodium, 25 g carbs (1 g fiber, < 1 g sugar), 0 g protein
Your favorite bag of pretzels now comes gluten-free! Go ahead and grab a handful—or two.
SHOP NOW: $19.99 for a 3 pack, amazon.com
Good Health Gluten Free Pretzels Sea Salt
Per 4 pretzels (28 g): 100 calories, 3 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 350 mg sodium, 18 g carbs (3 g fiber, 1 g sugar) 1 g protein
If you want to snack on a pretzel, you’ll probably want to go for a whole handful; however, you’ll only be able to eat four pretzels from Good Health before you’ve eaten what the nutritional information reads. Besides the fact that you may have trouble sticking to the serving size, these pretzels aren’t too bad of a choice. In fact, they come complete with as much mood-boosting vitamin B6 as seven cups of spinach!
Katz Gluten Free Everything Bagels
Per 1 bagel (99 g): 250 calories, 9 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 150 mg sodium, 47 g carbs (12 g fiber, 6 g sugar), 6 g protein
This well-balanced bagel is a great addition to your morning routine, thanks to an impressive 12 grams of fiber—just about 50 percent of your recommended daily intake. Add it to the list of high-fiber foods!
SHOP NOW: $6.19, theglutenfreeshoppe.com
Udi’s Gluten Free Everything Inside Bagel
Per 1 bagel (99 g): 290 calories, 10 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 490 mg sodium, 43 g carbs (3 g fiber, 5 g sugar), 7 g protein
When Udi’s says “everything inside,” they really just mean “salt.” Their sodium count is over three times that of Katz’s!
Purely Elizabeth Banana Nut Butter Grain-Free Granola
Per ⅓ cup: 150 calories, 11 g fat (3.5 g saturated fat), 100 mg sodium, 9 g carbs (2 g fiber, 4 g sugar), 5 g protein
Purely Elizabeth’s Grain-Free Granola will help keep your energy levels stable throughout the morning because of the great combination of cashews, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, and cashew butter.
SHOP NOW: $26.43 for a pack of 3 amazon.com
Nature’s Path Gluten Free Honey Almond Granola
Per ⅓ cup: 187 calories, 6 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 65 mg sodium, 21 g carbs (2 g fiber, 7 g sugar), 3 g protein
Made simply with only 10 ingredients, Nature’s Path falls short in that it’s lower in protein and healthy fats—both of which will help you stay full throughout the morning—but is higher in sugar.
Enjoy Life Brownie Mix
Per 3 tbsp mix (35 g): 130 calories, 2.5 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 120 mg sodium, 25 g carbs (2 g fiber, 17 g sugar), 6 g protein
This is our top pick, and it’s not just because these brownies come with the extra benefit of mini chocolate chips. Enjoy Life uses sprouted brown rice protein, which means these treats should be easy on those who have sensitivities to digesting grains.
SHOP NOW: $5.79, amazon.com
Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Brownie Mix
Per 1 brownie (37 g): 150 calories, 0.5 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 65 mg sodium, 33 g carbs (2 g fiber, 24 g sugar), 2 g protein
I’m all for the simple blend of ingredients, but Bob’s brownies are higher in carbs — namely sugar — and lower in protein than those from Enjoy Life.
Simple Mills Farmhouse Cheddar Crackers
Per 17 crackers (30 g): 150 calories, 8 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 125 mg sodium, 16 g carbs (2 g fiber, < 1 g sugar), 3 g protein
Don’t worry about the high fat content; those eight grams are mostly healthy fats, such as LDL-cholesterol-lowering stearic acid, from the addition of real cheddar cheese. Also, having organic cheddar cheese listed so high in the ingredient list helps Simple Mills to boost their protein content; eating a whole serving will provide you with two more grams of protein than those from Glutino.
SHOP NOW: $14.97 for a 3 pack, amazon.com
Glutino Cheddar Crackers
Per 8 crackers (30 g): 130 calories, 4 g fat (2 g saturated fat), 280 mg sodium, 22 g carbs (1 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 1 g protein
Even though Glutino has less fat than Simple Mills, more of that fat is from LDL-cholesterol-raising palm oil. And with more sodium and carbs per gram, these crackers are not going to do your belly any favors.
Mary’s Gone Crackers Chocolate Chip Cookies
Per 2 cookies (26 g): 130 calories, 6 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 95 mg sodium, 19 g carbs (1.5 g fiber, 9 g sugar), 1 g protein
Mary’s Gone Crackers, but she hasn’t gone sugar crazy! She has some of the lowest sugar counts on the market and her serving size sticks to less than 10 grams of sugar. I’m also a fan of her use of organic blackstrap molasses, one of the “least-bad” sources of added sugar because of its high vitamin and mineral content.
SHOP NOW: Whole Foods Market
Lucy’s Chocolate Chip Cookies
Per 3 cookies (32 g): 150 calories, 6 g fat (2 g saturated fat), 150 mg sodium, 23 g carbs (2 g fiber, 16 g sugar), 2 g protein
They’re allergen friendly, but Lucy’s is a little too heavy handed with the sugar scoop, leading these cookies to be sweeter than other brands in the market.
BFree Brown Seeded Rolls
Per bun (60 g): 150 calories, 5 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 320 mg sodium, 21 g carbs (5 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 6 g protein
BFree Brown Seeded Rolls are made with a unique blend of gluten-free flours with both sunflower seeds and toasted flax seeds scattered throughout for added texture and fiber. I also love the addition of sourdough—a combination of fermented quinoa, rice, and corn, which is teeming with gut-healthy probiotics.
Canyon Gluten-Free Hamburger Buns
Per bun (85 g): 200 calories, 4 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 320 mg sodium, 38 g carbs (3 g fiber, 6 g sugar) 3 g protein
With fewer satiating macronutrients like protein and fiber and more blood-glucose-spiking sugar than their gluten-free counterpart, Canyon’s Hamburger Buns just don’t stack up to the competition.
Van’s GF Original Waffles
Per 2 waffles (85 g): 200 calories, 6 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 330 mg sodium, 33 g carbs (1 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 2 g protein
Van’s proprietary blend of brown rice, potato, and soy flour makes the perfect base for these original waffles. And with only a gram of sugar split between a serving of two discs, you’ll be able to start your day off without worrying about a massive dip in blood sugar mid-morning.
Nature’s Path GF Waffles
Per 2 waffles (70 g): 210 calories, 7 g fat (1.5 g saturated fat), 460 mg sodium, 34 g carbs (1 g fiber, 4 g sugar), 1 g protein
Sure, Nature’s Path uses all organic ingredients in these homestyle waffles, but they’re a little too high in sugar compared to other products on the market. While you’re picking out your perfect waffle, make sure you also choose the best maple syrup.
Mary’s Gone Crackers Cocoa Minis
Per 22 pieces (30 g): 140 calories, 7 g fat (3.5 g saturated fat), 140 mg sodium, 19 g carbs (2 g fiber, 6 g sugar), 1 g protein
When you want to indulge, you want to go all out. And these minis will let that happen. Why stop at one? You can have 22! Even if you manage to get through an entire serving size, you’ll only set yourself back 6 grams of sugar and 7 grams of fat, much of which comes from coconut oil!
SHOP NOW: Whole Foods Market
Back to Nature GF Double Chocolate Cherry Brownie Cookies
Per 2 cookies (30 g): 130 calories, 5 g fat (2.5 g saturated fat), 100 mg sodium, 21 g carbs (1 g fiber, 13 g sugar), 1 g protein
Gram for gram, these cookies have more than double the amount of sugar than what Mary’s Cocoa Minis have.