Paprika powders go absolutely well with almost any dish, as well as marinades, barbecue rubs, barbecue sauces, and more! But can people with gluten sensitivities enjoy it too?
Paprika powder is generally gluten-free. It is usually sold as a single ingredient or added with silicone dioxide to prevent caking. But watch out if it says may contain wheat, or if it states that it’s been made in a facility that processes gluten or wheat.
What does the FDA say and what brands to watch out for? Read on to find out!
Is Paprika Normally Gluten Free?
Paprika powder is generally free from gluten if it is the only ingredient in the ingredient list.
Paprika powder is made with any ripe and red pepper variety of the Capsicum annum species. The peppers are dried and grounded (source: Masterclass). Paprika powder is favored for its mild flavor and vibrant red color.
When bottled or made commercially, most paprika powders are either single-ingredient, added with silicon dioxide, or a color-preserving ingredient to retain the vibrant red color of paprika powder.
Single-ingredient paprika powders can be organic or the manufacturer won’t mention if it’s organic or not. Those that aren’t, are added with silicone dioxide and sometimes with rosemary extract.
Rosemary extract and paprika are actually a team when it comes to preserving color or preventing the loss of it which can last for a few months (source: Journal of Food Processing and Preservation).
Silicone dioxide, on the other hand, is an anti-caking agent and is gluten-free. Anti-caking agents are added to prevent caking or clumping of the powder.
Herbs and spices differ in texture and structure. Seasoning mixes that have two or more spices or herbs might stick and bind together due to humidity or the type of ingredients.
To combat this, anti-caking agents are used. They help decelerate or prevent clumping and binding between ingredients (source: Michigan State University) which is why you’ll see them in the list of ingredients.
We advise you to always read the product label and look for wheat, flour, wheat flour, wheat starch, and others on this list as these ingredients are highly likely to contain or have gluten.
In addition, you also need to look for the phrase “Produced in a facility that processes wheat”. If you see this on the label, it would be best to avoid it.
Is Smoked Paprika Gluten Free?
Smoked paprika is free from gluten. Paprika, the regular kind, can be sweet, spicy, or both. The same goes for smoked paprika.
The only difference the two has is the drying process, which then leads to a different flavor profile between the two. Smoked paprika is made by roasting the peppers slowly over a fire from oak wood before being grounded (source: Masterclass).
Paprika Brands and Whether They’re Gluten Free
In this section, we will discuss what the FDA has to say about a “gluten-free” label, and some popular paprika brands if they label their products gluten-free or not, and if they can be considered gluten-free.
To begin with, let us discuss what a “gluten-free” label is. This label is not mandatory for producers or manufacturers to put on their labels. But those who do will have to follow a set of requirements and regulations.
If a product is labeled “gluten-free”, “free of gluten”, “without gluten”, or “no gluten”, it should have less than 20 ppm of gluten. A food product is also allowed to have the gluten-free label if:
- It has no ingredient that contains any kind of wheat, barley, rye, or a crossbreed of any of these grains
- It has no ingredient that comes from any of the grains mentioned above that have not undergone gluten removal
- It has a component from the grains listed above that have undergone gluten removal but still led to having more than 20 ppm of gluten
With this said, let’s take a look at some popular paprika brands.
McCormick doesn’t mark their paprika as gluten-free. According to their website’s Allergen Statement, they always declare any ingredient on the label, if this ingredient or ingredients can cause food allergies (source: McCormick). The McCormick paprika is not labeled to contain wheat or gluten.
Like McCormick paprika, Olde Thompson paprika also isn’t indicated to be gluten-free. But according to Spoonful App, it is free from gluten (source: Spoonful App).
Based on our research, Stonemill paprika doesn’t have a lot of information. However, we found this website that states it may have traces of gluten cereals. We recommend avoiding this to make certain (source: Open Food Facts).
Spice Island is under its parent company B&G Foods, Inc. which offers gluten-free spices without labeling as such. Although, they do state in an email that their single-ingredient spices are gluten-free in general (source: Good For You Gluten Free)
Great Value is a Walmart store brand. On their website, they have indicated that their Great Value paprika is gluten-free. But while this is so, you’ll see on the label that it also states that it may contain traces of wheat (source: Walmart).
Kroger has many brands of spices. According to their website, their Spice Lab Smoked Sweet La Vera Paprika Powder as well as the smoked version are gluten-free (source: Kroger).
MasterFoods paprika doesn’t indicate that it’s gluten-free, nor does it state the presence of gluten or wheat. What it states is that it may contain sesame seeds which are gluten-free.
Many types of paprika brands, in fact, many spices, do not have the “gluten-free” label or similar label on their products. We recommend reading the whole packaging or information on the products.
If the paprika powder says that it may contain traces of wheat, or is produced in a facility that also processes gluten or wheat, we recommend giving it a pass. We also recommend contacting the manufacturer if necessary.
We hope you found this guide helpful!