Is Ice Cream Gluten-Free?

Gluten Free Ice Cream

Who doesn’t enjoy the sweetness and chill of an ice cream cone on a hot, sticky, summer day? When do kids, teenagers or adults ever turn down an ice cream treat? Never! It is easy to see why ice cream became so popular in the United States. It is very appealing regardless of who you are or what your circumstances may be.


You probably still enjoy ice cream without suffering a health reaction, whether you are a Celiac or simply, gluten sensitive. But, have you ever suffered allergies after eating certain kinds of ice cream, such as, cookie dough, Oreo or chocolate chip? Maybe so, unless you were smart enough to read the label first. Has this caused you to believe that maybe ice cream is not gluten-free? Should this, also, be cut from your diet?

Initially, ice cream is gluten-free. By “initially,” I mean the basic, natural flavors: vanilla, chocolate and strawberry. Unfortunately, different ice cream brands will use different ingredients, so it is absolutely essential that you read the label of the carton before purchasing.

The good news is, it is usually easy to tell when an ice cream flavor contains gluten. For example, the flavors, cookie dough, Oreo and cheesecake ingredients obviously have gluten. You also know to avoid ice cream sandwiches, cones and cakes when you are following a gluten-free diet.

Now, if you are merely gluten sensitive, as my daughter was, then you should be able to order a bowl of ice cream at a stand or restaurant without having any problems. However, if you happen to have Celiac or gluten intolerance, you will have to watch out for cross-contamination. Different ice cream flavors are often served with the same scoop all through the day; this means that the scoop has been in contact with the gluten-filled cookie dough flavor as well as the gluten-free chocolate flavor.

Fortunately, this problem can be easily solved by asking the staff of the stand or restaurant to serve your ice cream from a newly opened carton. At certain ice cream stores, the management reserves sanitized, unused ice cream scoops so that they can serve their gluten intolerant customers without endangering them with cross-contamination.

To make your search for safe ice cream easier, I have included a list of various kinds of gluten-free ice cream below:

  • Breyers All Natural Ice Creams
  • Vanilla
  • Chocolate
  • Strawberry
  • Chocolate Chip
  • Coffee
  • French Vanilla
  • Mint Chocolate Chip
  • Peach
  • Rocky Road
  • Strawberry
  • Vanilla Fudge Twirl
  • All McDonalds Ice Cream Sundaes
  • Ben & Jerry’s (all flavors except the ones with obvious gluten such as, cookie dough)
  • Dreyers (again, all flavors except the ones which obviously contain gluten)

Ice Cream is truly one of America’s favorite treats. It is sweet, creamy and refreshing on a hot summer day. Not to mention, ice cream comes in a vast number of different flavors – enough to satisfy anybody. Even if you have Celiac or gluten sensitivity, you can enjoy this delicious dessert, provided that you remember to purchase and/or ask for safe flavors and servings.

Tricia Fecteau

I have tried to share what I have learned years in my book called "Gluten-Free with Love" available on Amazon and on my website. I want to help you in your journey to good health.

6 Comments

  1. Yasmine Cohen said:

    Hi,

    The japanese ice cream Maeda-En is sold in many grocery stores in NYC. I contacted the manufacturer and asked whether their ice cream is gluten free. Here is their response:

    Thank you for contacting at Maeda-en Info.
    Yes our ice creams are gluten free.
    We hope this information is helping with you and you can enjoy our ice
    creams.
    We also have mochi ice cream and those are gluten free.

    If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us.

    Your comments are very important for our products and we always appreciate
    with you.

  2. Jeralyn Lash-SAnds said:

    Two years ago, my daughter who lives an organic lifestyle, that I try to imitate!! told me to try a Gluten-Free or Macrobiotic Diet. She suggested them to rid myself of inflammation and chronic pain in my neck and back. Stubborn, I decided to stay with the close-to organic foods that I eat. The pain stayed as well.
    Recently, I was at a retreat and met about 5 women that are Gluten-Free and pain free. I guess I had enough pain and decided to try it. I only started 6 days ago and wondered about ice cream. Happy to read what you stated above about it. I hate to completely give it up! Oh, my!

  3. Bob Carlson said:

    Thanks for the information. Just so you are aware – My wife is the proud owner of Susans Ice Cream Essentials – The first totally dedicated Gluten Free Ice Cream line. Her pint products are Vanilla, Cappuccino, Double Fudge Brownie, Cookies&Cream and Mocha Fudge Chunk. They are All Natural and Superpremium as well. The product is sold in the greater Boston area. One final note – many lower quality ice cream products use starches in their flavoring – If it does not say Corn Starch it usually is a Wheat based starch – Susan’s line is guaranteed to be Gluten Free. Look us up on Facebook at facebook.com/susansicecreamessentials – Thanks.

  4. Barbara said:

    So glad to hear about Susan’s Ice cream….I live on the greater Boston area….will be looking them up on Facebook.
    I have been gluten free for 8 years(celiac disease). Sometimes I am still not “used to it” and miss certain goods and crave them!

  5. Dean A Wagner Jr said:

    Thanks everybody,just found out I have a gluten problem and this really helps me.

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