Setting Up Your Gluten Free Kitchen

If you are new to a Gluten Free Vegan diet, not only will you need to clean out your pantry, you will also need to check and maybe replace some of your cooking utensils.  (If you are interested in my story around cleaning out our pantry, check out My Pantry posts).  Gluten is sneaky stuff that can get into EVERYTHING in your kitchen.

Here are some tips in Setting Up Your Gluten Free Kitchen:

  1. Toaster — your toaster is the biggest collector of gluten.  Even with a good cleaning, it Skillet & Utensilscan still harbor residues of bread and crumbs.  Best to have a dedicated gluten free toaster — especially if you share a kitchen with a gluten eater.
  2. Non-stick pans — your non-stick pans can contain gluten in the scratches.  If you cookware is fairly new, a good cleaning may do the trick.  If you have used your pans to cook gluten foods for a long time or there are visible scratches, replace them.
  3. Cast-iron pans — Believe it or not, cast iron is porous.  Best to replace these or if you want to just do a thorough cleaning instead, follow the tips for cast iron cookware listed on the About.com article.
  4. Cutting boards — wooden or otherwise, cutting boards have scratches where gluten can hid.  Even the best cleaning cannot insure they are safe, so replace them.
  5. Silicone and plastic utensils — gluten can hide in cracks in either silicone or plastic utensils that were used to cook gluten food — especially if they have wooden handles.  Best to replace these.
  6. Wood spoons and utensils — no matter how hard you clean them, wooden utensils can still have gluten in them.  It is just easier to replace them.
  7. Rolling pins and cloths — anything used with gluten flour should be replaced.  These is especially true of rolling pins and pastry cloths.  No matter how well you clean them, gluten can still hide in them.

If you are sharing a kitchen with someone who is not gluten free, it would be a good idea to set aside a separate area for gluten free cooking and preparation.  As you know, Gluten can hide ANYWHERE in your kitchen, so a good cleaning of the separate area will deter any cross contamination (NOTE:  If you have ever pour flour from a bag into a canister, you will know what I mean when I say that gluten can be EVERYWHERE in your kitchen!)

For more tips on making your kitchen gluten free, check out the following articles from Jan Anderson, the About.com – Celiac and Gluten Sensitivity expert:

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