Pissing In The Gluten-Free Cheerios

CheeriosADDENDUM: Since writing this post I started a petition on Change.org as more and more stories of people in gluten-free community kept pouring in. Please sign it and share. The only thing that you have to be to sign this petition is a human being who believes Celiac/gluten-sensitive people should be able to enjoy labeled gluten-free foods safely.

There is so much controversy surrounding gluten-free Cheerios right now. They are all over store shelves and it’s causing a divide. On one side are people who are encouraging people to eat them and eating it themselves. On the other side are people like me who are staying far from them and will never encourage anyone with any type of issue with gluten to eat them.

First, General Mills is mechanically cleaning oats instead of using certified gluten-free oats. This could change based on Tricia Thompson’s (Gluten-Free Watchdog) last conversation in which they stated they were looking to source “some” oats from growers following purity protocol. I quoted some because it’s not all. If you’re like me, if a product containing oats isn’t using 100% certified gluten-free oats, then I put it back on the shelf. My hope is that GM’s will move from some to all.

Second, some of the tests have had results as high at 90ppm. My thought is that if you are making a gluten-free product, the test results should be in a small cluster with an occasional slightly higher result (this is my opinion based on my psychology classes in statistics and methodology). Knowing that there has been one result that high, I don’t feel comfortable…because with my luck, I would get one of those boxes and be sick for weeks. NothanksIlikenotbeingsickallthetime.

Third, just because other people say it’s okay, I never jump on the bandwagon. I weigh the facts and the options carefully. You should too. Just because people say they don’t react, doesn’t mean the gluten isn’t doing damage while they enjoy bowl after bowl of cereal. There are a lot of things we all miss, but I refuse to do more damage to my gut just for something I might miss. I still won’t eat Domino’s gluten-free pizza.

It is a fine line to be in the public eye, blogging and using social media to spread the word about gluten-free living. It would be irresponsible of me to say, “Hey, gluten-free Cheerios are safe to eat because we have those awesome labeling regulations now.” No, it doesn’t work that way, especially with something this controversial and iffy. Research, dig, do due diligence. You owe it to your health (and that of your family if you’re the one making decisions for gluten-free family members) to do so and not just take someone’s word for it who you happen to follow on Facebook or read their blog.

If someone has to use a qualifying statement like, “If you have Celiac or are extra sensitive, you shouldn’t eat/drink this.” IF it is that serious, no one who is gluten-free should be eating or drinking said product. I won’t use gluten-free Cheerios until I’m certain they will be safe for EVERYONE.

Some articles by Tricia Thompson on gluten-free Cheerios:

General Mills “Gluten-Free” Cheerios: Comment from Gluten-Free Watchdog

More Thoughts on Gluten-Free Cheerios

Gluten-Free Cheerios: Take Two

After some discussion on the gluten-free easily Facebook page, Shirley has encouraged everyone saying they reacted to the gf Cheerios to contact General Mills and the FDA. I feel it is important to contact both and not just one. GM needs to know that their product and how they are processing and testing it is not meeting true gf needs. The FDA needs to know that a labeled gf product is making people sick. 



Pumpkin Maple Bacon Oatmeal

Pumpkin Maple Bacon Oatmeal

Pumpkin Maple Bacon Oatmeal

First thing, the winners drawn last week in the Real Jules, Real Good Giveaway did not contact me so I did a re-draw. Jennifer C. and Chris, congratulations on winning gfJules™ Instant Gluten-Free Oats! Please email me at debi.v.smith@gmail.com with your mailing address by next week Wednesday, January 28th, 5pm EST.  Jennifer, I hope you and your daughter enjoy the oats. Chris, I hope you like the oats as much as you like Jules’ flour.

The first thing I made with oats while trying them out was this Pumpkin Maple Bacon Oatmeal. I had homemade pureed pumpkin in the refrigerator to make risotto, but I knew I had enough for a hot bowl of oatmeal. And if you’ve followed me for awhile, you know how much I like the pumpkin maple bacon combination. Plus, it’s been some time since my last pumpkin recipe.

Pumpkin Maple Bacon Oatmeal – serves 1-2 

1 cup water

1/2 cup gluten-free oats

1/4 cup pureed pumpkin

1 tablespoon pure maple syrup


cooked bacon

In a small saucepan, bring water to a boil. Add oats and stir occasionally. Once most of the water is absorbed, add pumpkin, salt, and maple syrup. Cook until the oatmeal reaches your desired consistency. Dish into a bowl and crumble at least one piece of bacon on top.

Gluten-Free Mac & Cheese

gf mac & cheeseI don’t make mac & cheese often. When I do, I forget to write the recipe down. This last time I made it, Chaz raved. I asked several times if he was serious because I wanted to make sure he wasn’t just appeasing me. To make his point, he went for seconds. Something we rarely do these days.

So here you go readers, a Chaz approved gluten-free mac & cheese. If you want to make it dairy-free, your favorite milk, fat, and meltable “cheese” should work. Also, I’ve made it using the Chedda Fondue from The Ultimate Uncheese Cookbook. Just use the Chedda Fondue in place of the béchamel cheese sauce.

Gluten-Free Mac & Cheese – serves 6-8

12 ounces gluten-free pasta (I used Tinkyada brand)

6 cups water


3 tablespoons butter

3 1/2 tablespoons rice flour

1 1/2 cup milk

3 cups cheddar cheese, shredded or cut into small chunks.

Preheat oven t0 350º.  In a large pot, bring your water to a boil. Add about a tablespoon of salt, enough to make it almost like sea water. Add the pasta and cook 2 minutes under the package directions, stirring occasionally to keep it from clumping. In a large saucepan, melt the butter on medium heat.  Add the flour when the butter is completely melted and stir together, cook for 2 minutes. Turn the heat to low and slowly whisk in your milk. Let it simmer for about 2-3 minutes then add your cheese, stirring frequently to help the cheese melt. Once your pasta is done, drain it and set aside. Once the cheese is completely melted, keep stirring until the sauce is thick. Remove the sauce from the heat and add the pasta, stirring to coat it in the sauce evenly. Transfer to a casserole or baking dish. Place the dish in the oven and bake for 20-30 minutes.