Starbucks does have a special menu for allergens and it is called the Starbucks Allergen menu. However. oatmeal is a product to be wary of because of the way it is milled. In Australia, the food standard laws prohibit ‘gluten-free’ on any oat-containing products. While Europe and the USA have different standards where oats are marketed as gluten-free. These labels are the equivalent of oats labeled wheat-free in Australia.
Gluten is a protein found in the grains like wheat and barley, and something most of us don’t need to think about when eating bread.
Pure oats can sometimes be consumed by people with celiac disease because they aren’t sensitive to the protein avenin contained in the oats.
It takes very extensive testing to determine who can and can’t eat oats, and without the results, health can be at risk when oats are consumed.
If you ignore the recommendation of your doctor it can lead to damage to the intestinal lining from consuming gluten, wheat, and barley.
People who have a gluten intolerance can develop a harmful immune response from eating oats, so it is recommended that no oats are consumed as part of a gluten free diet in Australia. But when sifting through the literature all countries seem to have different requirements and recommendations.
What is Oatmeal?
Oatmeal is a preparation of oats that are de-husked and flattened or ground white oats known as oatmeal. When prepared for consumption the oat grains are de-husked and steamed, the courser they are the more cooking time is required to make them edible. The smaller lighter oats are eaten raw in muesli while the heavier oats are cooked in porridge. Oatmeal provides various health benefits, including lowering the risk of heart disease when eaten daily.
Pure oats are gluten-free, but it is impossible to trust the process as oats are often contaminated with gluten when they are processed in a facility that also processes wheat and barley. So, if one knew the oats were pure we could eat them, but we have no way of being certain.
Oatmeal at Starbucks
Is Starbucks oatmeal gluten free, becoming more transparent? Over the last couple of years, Starbucks has taken steps to ensure that people with gluten sensitivity are kept safe. If you are planning to consume oatmeal you should specifically look for Starbucks gluten free products, and one of these is Starbucks gluten free Blueberry oatmeal bars. The gluten-free range at Starbucks is growing, but, because of the cross-contamination, a person with gluten sensitivity cannot safely eat breakfast oatmeal in Starbucks. However, Starbucks has introduced a gluten-free breakfast sandwich, or try the Quinoa and honey.
The advice from Starbucks themselves is that people with gluten intolerances eat no food prepared on-site at Starbucks as it can’t be guaranteed as gluten-free, and consequently, it is best to choose an especially prepared offsite product like the Blueberry oatmeal bars.
Starbucks Perfect Oatmeal
For most people the Starbucks Perfect Oatmeal is just that, making the ideal breakfast for those without food intolerances.
As the consumption of oatmeal is recommended by Dieticians and medical professionals as part of a healthy diet, and for people with gluten sensitivity, it is better to prepare and eat their oats at home.
Oats fuel the body for most of the day, making them the ideal breakfast for nearly everyone. When we have gluten-free oatmeal at home, it makes it easy and quick to prepare.
In some countries, pure oats are being introduced to people on a gluten-free diet, and studies have shown that better intestinal healing occurs when these people have a gradual introduction of oats and medical monitoring. Many food allergies are thought to be the result of solids being commenced later in infancy than they once were, and ways of fixing this are being studied, peanut allergy is a good example.
15%-30% of people in the USA identify as gluten intolerant, although the statistics could be higher as some people are never diagnosed. For those who have an intolerance, even a tiny amount can be harmful, so avoiding gluten is the only way to stay well.
A number of companies have begun to process and grow oats in fields designated as gluten-free, and the final product must contain less than 20ppm of gluten. This is a step forward for Starbucks and other outlets that are doing their best to give the client a safe product, and will ultimately make a difference to the final composition of the Oatmeal and they may be able to ensure is Starbucks oatmeal gluten free.
Frequently Asked Questions
For those with gluten, intolerance life can be difficult and some people don’t want to eat out as they only trust foods prepared at home.
Some of the questions asked are:
Am I safe to eat breakfast in Starbucks?
Yes perfectly safe, but stay away from oatmeal and eat something entirely different like fruit and quinoa. Or even the lean protein wraps for breakfast make a great change. Have an iced tea with it as this is also a safe option.
Yes, you can study the Starbucks Allergen menu before you go along, and maybe avoid the oatmeal and try the Glazed Chai Pumpkin Scones that are both vegan, and gluten-free for a change.
Some people are both vegan and gluten-free, and the above scones are ideal, as Starbucks can now use the gluten-free flour to make their product as safe as possible for diners. If you are a good cook recreate them at home using King Arthur Flour blend, gluten-free flour.
Starbucks is good fun for the whole family, and they do their best to keep you safe from food allergies. Unfortunately for those with gluten intolerance, it is such an individual thing that the onus is on the person to avoid the food additives or allergens as much as possible.
Is Starbucks oatmeal gluten free? Maybe alright for you to eat, but you do have to be careful wherever you go with whatever you eat.