Pam Cureton: Hi! I am Pam Cureton, registered Dietitian at the University of Maryland, Center for Celiac Research.
Today, in partnership with General Mills, I am talking about how to eat gluten-free, healthfully. And now I'll discuss how to prepare and store gluten-free foods at home.
After returning to home from the grocery store, after carefully selecting safe gluten-free foods, it's important to keep them safe at home. Cross-contamination can occur when gluten containing ingredients combine with gluten-free foods. To avoid contaminating gluten-free foods try these steps:Find a separate area in the kitchen to store gluten-free products. If the person needing a gluten-free diet is a child, it is also helpful to use stickers or put their name on the gluten-free items, so they can help themselves to save gluten-free snacks or meals when mom and dad are not around. Avoid double dipping, which is putting a knife in a condiment, then spreading that condiment on a gluten containing product, and then putting the knife back into the condiment, dragging those crumbs along with it. To avoid this situation purchase separate condiments or use squeeze bottles and no knife is needed.
Purchase a separate toaster as the family toaster is filled with gluten containing crumbs that can contaminate gluten-free products. A toaster oven can be use if it is cleaned between uses and gluten-free product is placed on a clean foil or tray. Clean countertops carefully after preparing gluten containing foods so left over crumbs do not get into gluten-free items. If possible, prepare the gluten-free food first. Carefully and thoroughly wash pots, pans, cooking and serving utensils and dishes after each use.
With the availability of great tasting gluten-free foods today, everyone in the family can enjoy the same great tasting food so there really is less worry about cross contamination.