You’re wondering: Is ketchup gluten-free? We have the answer for you! Read on to find out how ketchup fits into your gluten-free lifestyle.
Ketchup is one of America’s best-loved condiments. Burgers, chicken nuggets, hot dogs, and French fries wouldn’t be the same without it!
If you’re new to the gluten-free diet, you may be crossing your fingers that ketchup can remain a sidekick to your favorite foods.
The big question is: Can I eat ketchup if I’m gluten-free?
SHORT ANSWER: Yes! The ingredients that make up ketchup are naturally gluten-free, so most ketchup is gluten-free.
However, not all ketchup brands are certified gluten-free. Depending upon your level of sensitivity, you may need to proceed with caution.
Cross-contamination could be a concern if ketchup is being manufactured in a facility that produces gluten-containing products. This may be mentioned in the allergen statements on the label.
Is Ketchup Gluten-Free?
Yes, ketchup is made from naturally gluten-free ingredients, so it is generally considered to be gluten-free. Even some of the most popular ketchup brands, such as Heinz, are labeled gluten-free. This means that they have met the FDA regulation of testing at less than 20 parts per million (ppm) of gluten.
Ketchup ingredients are naturally free from gluten. If you read the nutrition label on your classic Heinz tomato ketchup, this is what you’ll see:
- Tomato Concentrate from Red Ripe Tomatoes
- Distilled Vinegar
- High Fructose Corn Syrup
- Corn Syrup
- Onion Powder
- Natural Flavoring
You’ll notice that “distilled vinegar” does not state the original source of the vinegar. Rest assured, though, the distilled vinegar in Heinz products is derived from corn, not from wheat.
Is Vinegar Gluten-Free?
Vinegar is one of the main ingredients in ketchup, and vinegar can be tricky.
Most vinegars come from gluten-free sources. Apple cider vinegar, wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, cane vinegar, and rice vinegar are gluten-free.
Distilled white vinegar is commonly made from corn in the United States, so it is almost always gluten-free. Outside of the US, white vinegar is sometimes made with gluten containing grains, specifically malt from barley.
Those with celiac disease or others who are highly sensitive to gluten could have an adverse reaction to malt vinegar, even if it tests below 20 parts per million of gluten.
Malt vinegar is the one variety that should definitely be avoided when you’re eating gluten-free.
Gluten-Free Ketchup Brands
There are many popular ketchup brands that are safe to consume on a gluten-free diet. The following ketchup brands, commonly found on grocery stores’ shelves, are labeled gluten-free (less than 20 ppm gluten):
- Annie’s Organic Ketchup
- Sir Kensington
- Walden Farms
Note: Ketchup brands have become more health conscious lately! It’s easy to find ketchup that is free from artificial colors, artificial flavors, and high-fructose corn syrup if that’s something you value.
What Condiments Are Not Gluten-Free?
These condiments typically do contain gluten:
- Soy Sauce (See this article on is soy sauce gluten-free?)
- Malt Vinegar (made from barley)
- Heinz 57 Sauce (contains malt vinegar)
- Worcestershire Sauce*
If you are avoiding gluten-containing foods, you will want to steer clear of the sauces listed above, or look for gluten-free variations.
*Worcestershire is usually gluten-free in the US, but it’s important to check the label. (See this article on is Worcestershire sauce gluten-free?)
Which Heinz Products are Gluten-Free?
The majority of Heinz products are gluten-free, including the following:
- Ketchup (all varieties)
- Honey Mustard
- Spicy Brown Mustard
- Yellow Mustard
- Carolina Mustard BBQ Sauce
- Carolina Vinegar BBQ Sauce
- Chili Sauce
- Culinary Crunch (all varieties)
- Dill Relish
- Hot Dog Relish
- Balsamic Vinegar
- India Relish
- Kansas City BBQ Sauce
- Cocktail Sauce
- Original Sweet & Thick BBQ Sauce
Visit the Heinz website for full ingredients. Their product line is expanding all the time, so the heinz website is the best resource for staying up to date.
No, French’s ketchup does not contain gluten. French’s ketchup is made from naturally gluten-free ingredients: tomato concentrate, sugar, distilled vinegar, salt, onion powder, spices, and natural flavor.
Yes, Great Value ketchup is labeled gluten-free on the Walmart website. Great Value ketchup contains tomato concentrate, high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, distilled vinegar, salt, spices, onion powder, and natural flavor.
Yes, Heinz ketchup is gluten-free, as stated on its label. It contains less than 20 parts per million of gluten, making it safe for celiac consumers and others with gluten sensitivities.
Hunt’s ketchup appears to contain only gluten-free ingredients. Hunt’s ketchup is not specifically labeled gluten free, which means that it may not have been tested to prove it is under 20 parts per million of gluten. However, the Hunt’s website says that it does not contain any common allergens.
The Bottom Line
Ketchup is typically gluten-free. To be extra cautious, buy a brand that is certified gluten-free.
Ketchup lovers, rejoice! Ketchup is made from naturally gluten-free ingredients, so most brands of ketchup should be safe to enjoy as part of a gluten-free diet.
Because cross-contamination could occur at certain facilities, look for ketchup that is certified gluten-free on the label.