Wondering if Worcestershire sauce is gluten-free? Don’t worry, you are not the only person to wonder this. This article will give you all of the information you need to know about Worcestershire sauce!
Worcestershire sauce is a condiment that is commonly used with sandwiches, salads, soups, stews, and grilling vegetables. It has a tricky name, but it is used frequently. The sauce is named after where it was created: Worcester in Worcestershire, England. Even though it is used quite often, is it gluten-free?
The answer is sometimes. All of the ingredients are naturally gluten-free, so the sauce should be gluten-free. It all depends on the brand of Worcestershire sauce you buy.
Even though the sauce does not contain any gluten, it is not always gluten-free. Some brands put soy sauce in their Worcestershire sauce, which is not gluten-free. You really have to read the ingredients list when it comes to this sauce.
Keep reading to learn all about Worcestershire sauce and what makes it gluten-free or not gluten-free.
Quick Answer: Is Worcestershire Sauce Gluten-Free?
Yes and no. I know, it is a frustrating answer, but it’s true. It all depends on the sauce you buy and what brand you buy it from. According to the FDA, for a product to be labeled as “gluten free,” it has to have less than 20 parts per million (ppm) of gluten.
So when you see a gluten-free label, the product contains less than 20 ppm. Some brands of Worcestershire sauce have “Gluten-Free” on the label, but not every container has that label, meaning some bottles have more than 20 ppm of gluten content. If your gluten allergy is severe, it is crucial to avoid products that are not labeled “gluten-free.”
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What is Worcestershire Sauce?
Worcestershire sauce is a popular sauce that is made up of malt vinegar, spirit vinegar (or white vinegar), salt, cane sugar, molasses, garlic powder, chili pepper extract, high fructose corn syrup, and anchovies. Sometimes this sauce is referred to as fish sauce. This sauce is actually the oldest commercially bottled condiment in the United States!
There are plenty of uses for Worcestershire sauce, such as: salad dressings, steak sauce, sandwiches, and even in drinks. Worcestershire sauce is on the list of ingredients in a Bloody Mary. Its tangy flavor makes it one of the most popular condiments.
If you have celiac disease, it is important to look at the types of Worcestershire sauce and Worcestershire sauce brands to ensure that they are gluten-free. Looking at the product label, ingredient statement, and ingredient list is also important to double check there are no gluten ingredients.
There is always a possibility of cross-contamination and sometimes companies do not have a thorough equipment clean-up procedure, so if your allergy is severe enough, it may be better to make homemade Worcestershire sauce to avoid allergens. Unfortunately, not everyone understands the seriousness of food allergies or good manufacturing practices.
What is the Difference Between Worcestershire Sauce and Soy Sauce?
Soy sauce is made up of soybeans, salt, and koji mold. It is typically used with Asian dishes. Soy sauce is fermented, but not as long as Worcestershire sauce and is not as strong as Worcestershire sauce.
Worcestershire sauce has a bunch of different ingredients and is typically used for beef. This sauce contains natural flavorings, which are pickles, peppers soy, and lemon. Traditional Worcestershire sauce is fermented for up to 36 months.
A really important difference to note between the two sauces is that soy sauce is not good for a gluten-free diet. Unlike Worcestershire sauce that does not have gluten products, soy sauce does. Soy sauce contains wheat, making it not a gluten-free sauce.
There are gluten-free brands of soy sauce, like Kikkoman or San-j Tamari. There are also gluten-free brands of Worcestershire sauce, like The Wizard’s Gluten-Free Organic Vegetarian Worcestershire sauce, Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce, and French’s Worcestershire sauce.
Is Worcestershire Sauce Gluten-Free? FAQs
Yes! You can find gluten-free Worcestershire sauce at any grocery store. I usually find mine at Whole Foods. Just keep an eye out for the gluten-free label.
Soy sauce is a good replacement for Worcestershire sauce, as long as it is gluten-free. You can also use red vinegar or balsamic vinegar mixed with tamarind paste. A1 sauce actually is pretty similar to Worcestershire sauce, but this would only work with meats or sandwiches.
No, it is not vegan, as it contains anchovies. There are brands that sell vegan Worcestershire sauce, like The Wizard.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Even though it is a complicated answer, Worcestershire sauce is sometimes gluten-free. It all depends on how the sauce is made and if it has less than 20 ppm of gluten content. If there is not a gluten-free label on the bottle, you may have to avoid it if your allergy is severe enough.
There are brands that do make gluten-free Worcestershire sauce, so keep an eye out for the label. Worst case scenario, you can experiment and make your own Worcestershire sauce!