Gluten-free beer has often been an unobtainable dream for people who need to avoid gluten due to gluten allergy, sensitivity, wheat allergy, or celiac disease, but who also enjoy beer. The reason why is simple. Beer is most commonly made with wheat, malted barley, both of which contain gluten.
Fortunately, there is good news these days for people who are living gluten-free. While it is true that at one time it was almost impossible to find beer that didn’t contain gluten, today there is a nice variety of gluten-free beers to choose from.
Beer Without Wheat?
Often, people are surprised to learn that it is possible to brew beer without wheat or barley, but it is. Gluten-free beer is brewed from cereal grains that do not contain gluten, such as buckwheat, corn, millet, rice, or sorghum.
In additional to beer that contains no gluten at all, there are also low-gluten beers available. Be aware, though, that there is no consensus on how much gluten is too much. Some brewers maintain gluten levels that are less than 20 ppm (“parts per million”), while others have less.
There is also a lack of agreement on how much gluten someone with celiac disease or gluten allergy can safely consume without causing physical damage to their bodies. If you have been diagnosed with adverse reactions to gluten, it is best to discuss the possibility of drinking low-gluten beer with your doctor before you go out and try it.
How Does It Taste?
Granted, the taste of beer made without gluten doesn’t taste like traditional beer. In the past, it tasted downright dreadful. Fortunately, the tweaking in ingredients and brewing methods over the past few years have greatly improved the taste. There is still room for improvement, but you should be able to find a beer from the many available that will satisfy you when you get a craving for a beer.
Who Makes Gluten-Free Beer?
Both huge and small brewing companies are taking an interest in brewing gluten-free beer. Below are some of the best of what’s out there today:
- Bard’s Tale Beer
- New Grist Beer
- New Planet Beer
- Green’s Gluten-Free Beers
- Hambleton Ales Gluten-Free Brews
- Les bières de la Nouvelle-France
- Ramapo Valley Honey Beer
- Redbridge Beer
- Schnitzerbräu Gluten-Free Beer
- Sprecher Brewery Mbege and Shakparo Beers
- St. Peter’s Brewery Gluten-Free Beer