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What Are Gluten-Free Biscuits?

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  • Written By: Lainie Petersen
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 23 July 2017
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The term gluten-free biscuits may have one of two meanings. In the United States, it would refer to a type of breadstuff, similar to a roll, that does not contain gluten. Gluten-free biscuits in the United Kingdom refers to gluten-free versions of biscuits, typically small baked goods that are better known as crackers or cookies in the United States. In either case, the term gluten-free is used to designate a food that is prepared without the use of wheat, rye, or barley flour or any other ingredients that contain gluten. It is generally a good idea for those who need to eat gluten-free foods to research the companies offering these items in order to ensure that the foodstuffs offered are genuinely gluten free.

Gluten is a protein to which many people have a significant sensitivity. While consumption of gluten is widespread, there are some individuals who cannot tolerate its inclusion in their diets. Some of these people have celiac disease, a condition in which exposure to gluten can cause significant digestive discomfort and malnutrition. Others are simply sensitive to gluten and may experience a wide range of symptoms when exposed to gluten in food or personal care products. In recent years, the health and nutrition communities have become more aware of gluten issues, and many food manufacturers are beginning to produce gluten-free foods for this expanding market.

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In the United States, a gluten-free biscuit typically refers to a small, soft bread roll that is typically served either with meals or, in some cases, as a main dish for breakfast. Biscuits are typically made from white flour that has been blended with some type of shortening or fat, creating a soft or even flaky texture. A gluten-free biscuit does not include wheat flour but may be made from rice, soy, or other gluten-free flours. As many people feel that biscuits are often best when very fresh, many people on gluten-free diets may simply decide to make gluten-free biscuits at home to be able to enjoy them when just removed from the oven.

Those who adhere to a gluten-free lifestyle in the United Kingdom, on the other hand, may look for gluten-free biscuits at their local store. A savory biscuit, known as a cracker in the United States, would be made from gluten-free flours, while a sweet biscuit would be similarly made but would also be sweetened. The availability of gluten-free biscuits may depend on the area in which a person lives, though many gluten-free foods are also available through mail-order sources.

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