Over the last decade or so, gluten-free foods have emerged from obscurity to go from specialist health food products to mainstream supermarket staples. Free-from aisles are growing, bringing choice and variety to the one in 10 people in the UK who avoid gluten altogether.
Among that cohort are those with coeliac disease, an autoimmune condition that damages the gut lining when gluten – the protein found in grains such as wheat, barley and rye – is eaten. And according to Coeliac UK, the condition affects one in every 100 people. And others might experience non-coeliac gluten sensitivity or a wheat allergy.
Unfortunately, the condition has no cure, and the only treatment is a diet free of gluten for life. Besides being found in obvious foods such as pasta and bread, gluten lurks in other places, including sausages, fish fingers, soy sauce and some chocolate and crisps. In fact, what people embarking on this lifelong change will likely have found is that almost everything in a packet seems to contain gluten.
When picking up a quick snack, you really need to know your onions (or rather, grains) or pick products explicitly marked as gluten-free. Luckily, the number of specialist gluten-free snacks continues to edge closer to that of gluten-containing ones. To help you discover your favourites, we’ve rated some of the best around.
How we tested
We tracked down a wide variety of gluten-free snacks, both sweet and savoury, that will keep you going until your next meal. There are crunchy titbits, chewy morsels and even some with exotic flavours in the mix. We’ve rated each on their taste, texture and how satisfied they left us. Stock up on these delights, and you’ll always have something on hand when the urge for a light bite strikes.
The best gluten-free snacks for 2022 are:
- Best overall – Creative Nature ultimate snack taster bundle: £16, Creativenaturesuperfoods.co.uk
- Best all-natural snack – Chika’s taster box plantain crisps, 12 packs: £11.85, Chikas.co.uk
- Best gluten-free brownies – Positive Bakes brownie and blondie selection gift box, 25 portions: £22.95, Positivebakes.com
- Best throwback snack – Crave pickled onion monster feet, 80g: £1.73, Thevegankind.com
- Best vegan gluten-free sweet treat – Flower and White vegan meringue bar taster pack, 10 bars: £14.99, Flowerandwhite.co.uk
- Best vitamin-enriched snack – Perkier variety snack box, 8 bars: £9.99, Perkier.co.uk
- Best fruit snack – Soul Fruit discovery box, 10 bags: £15, Soulfruit.co.uk
- Best for crunch – Shore Seaweed chips mixed case, 12 packs: £24, Amazon.co.uk
- Best for carnivores – The Can-D Food Co premium candied smoked bacon, 100g: £8.95, Can-d.co.uk
- Best gluten-free crackers – Cru8 raw carrot and sesame crackers, 35g: £2.65, Meltedinside.com
- Best dip – ChicP beetroot and horseradish houmous, 150g: £2, Ocado.com
- Best lentil chips – Properchips mixed box, 16 x 20g packs: £13, Proper.co.uk
- Best cheesy nibbles – Cheesies variety pack, 6 x 20g bags: £8.99, Cheesies.co.uk
- Best biscuits for cheese – Seggiano organic buckwheat digestive biscuits, 150g: £4.40, Seggiano.com
- Best for kids – Eat Real veggie straws kale, tomato and spinach multipack, 5 x 20g bags: £2.20, Sainsburys.co.uk
- Best keto snack – Nibble simply multipack, 12 x 36g packs: £17.99, Nibblesimply.com