10 Ways to Accidentally Gluten Yourself at Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is full of gluten-filled landmines. If this is your first Thanksgiving on a gluten free diet, you might not realize the challenge that awaits you. Read this list and make sure you’re ready to stay gluten free this Thanksgiving.

Even if you’re not new to the gluten free diet, a refresher of the potential pitfalls is valuable. How do you think I came up with this list anyway?

The Top 10 Ways To Accidentally Gluten Yourself At Thanksgiving

10. The Turkey: Eat a turkey that’s been shot up with gluten filled flavorings. Make sure that your turkey is gluten free.

9. Eat cornbread dressing that was made with non-GF cornmeal. Go the extra step and buy certified GF cornmeal to make sure that you’re not getting cornmeal that was processed in a facility that also processes wheat.

8. Attempt to scrape the pie filling out of the pie without catching any crumbs. I’ve tried it – many times. I dare say that it’s not possible.

7. Eating vegetable dishes without asking about the ingredients. Creamed corn is a great example – sometimes it’s made with cornstarch, but it’s often thickened with wheat flour.

6. Let someone use the same spoon to serve the GF and non-GF stuffings. Big no-no. Even little bits of gluten cause damage.

5. Eat a creamy casserole that you didn’t make yourself. Chances are overwhelming that a can of Campbell’s soup was included.

4. Not having a back-up plan for overwhelming temptation, e.g., a can of chocolate icing in your purse.

3. Pouring gravy over your stuffing without checking ingredients. You know gravy is often thickened with wheat flour, right? And that not all cornstarch is GF?

2. Nosh on the veggie dip appetizers that your aunt set out for the early arrivers. Salad dressings and spinach dips seem so innocuous, but read the label before dipping.

1. Getting overwhelmed before you even get to Turkey Day and deciding that you’ll just cheat so that you can enjoy the day. I know some of you are thinking that, so STOP IT! Get busy and figure out what you can cook so that your Thanksgiving meal will be enjoyable.


  1. Last year we were traveling to Thanksgiving – family tried as they could, but I had to do without a lot of items. One exception – someone had brought some little crustless pecan pies made in ramikins. They were wonderful! Each one was individually sized and I could add a little ice cream to them after they were warmed up. Suddenly I felt like part of the group again!

  2. Do you have any stuffing recipes that don’t include cornbread. I would like to make italian-style bread and cut it into pieces, but have no idea what to add to it to make it into stuffing?

  3. Thanks Mary. Now if I can just get my parents to see this! I have already ask to put my gluten free foods some where separate from others…. so that the not GF stuffing spoon gets used to dip out GF stuffing….arrrgggg!

    I am planning to take GF cornbread stuffing, raw veggies (because in the south no one eats those on thanksgiving it seems, lol) and a gluten free pie or dessert.

    I had not even thought about turkey being glutened. I almost wanted to buy an organic turkey from Earthfare today….guess I should have.


  4. Nikki Renee says:

    Thank you so much for this list. I avoid gluten due to my Hashimoto’s diagnosis. I have been eating Paleo so I easily avoid grains etc… It’s the things like gluten in turkey that I just have no idea to look for. Happy Thanksgiving!

  5. I have to say I was totally guilty of #8 as a kid. For some reason, my family and I never took that kind of cross contamination seriously and I was encourage to eat the “inside” of apple pie. Yeah, totally not safe at all and totally sick by the end of each meal.

    Great list!

  6. Melissa Williams says:

    Thanks for #1
    I was already planning on cheating :( i’ve been
    Very overwhelmed lately. I just fell like throwing
    Myself on the floor and throwing a kicking and screaming
    Fit until I pass out from exhaustion:( I know we have
    All felt like this once and awhile especially at the holidays.
    I just want to thank you for the encouragement that this can
    Be done. Just stay focused and you will stay healthy and well!

  7. The gluten free corn flakes in the cereal isle at Whole Foods ground slightly also make a great crumbing mix.

  8. Wow, Thanks for the information. It’s good to be aware especially with the things we eat occasionally. Indeed, fascinating list for thanksgiving and for the upcoming events. =)

  9. Frances Westover says:

    I really appreciate the “gluten free and corn free” flour mix that can be made soy free as well. I am saddled with multiple allergies including all the grains except rice and sorghum, so I have a hard time eating in a non-boring way. Thanks.

  10. i am not a celiac. but i am gluten intolerant. i was told by the physician who told me to go gluten free, not to eat chicken. i found out that ANY kind of poultry unless it is fed a gluten free diet, including eggs make me sick.

    here in new york i found Murray’s chickens and turkeys and cornish hens etc at one of the local supermarkets (fairway) and they are all gluten free, so i can now enjoy poultry and even chopped liver. at costco i found gluten free eggs. if your local market does not carry Murray’s chickens call Murray’s and they will tell you where you can find their chickens.

    i make all dishes gluten free. that way, i know there is no way for me to get sick and none of my family or guests have any complaints, only exclaimed
    “are you sure this is gluten free?”

    enjoy with a gluten free thanksgiving. i hope you find a gluten free turkey.

Speak Your Mind