Industry watchers say the next wave of gluten-free foods is likely to be more focused on healthfulness. For some time, it seemed like a victory just to have more and more products available. But now some manufacturers are working to up the game a bit.
Bgreen Food, a San Diego company, makes five varieties of organic, gluten-free angel hair pasta: black rice, white rice, buckwheat, millet and brown rice. Each cooks in five minutes. Don't expect the same taste and texture as wheat pasta – but they're good on their own terms, often with a nuttier flavor.
The company has recipes on its bgreenfood.com website.
Rice is often a good choice for people who cannot eat wheat (which, along with barley and rye contain gluten). Bgreen has Extraordinary Black Rice, a beautiful, small grain from China.
A new line of frozen muffins put vegetables first. The first ingredient in all of them is a vegetable. They're not without sugar; The zucchini banana chocolate chip variety, for example, has 120 calories, with 3 grams of fat, 11 grams of sugar and 5 grams of fiber. They're sold in boxes of four.
Garden Lites muffins are sold frozen and individually wrapped. They come in five flavors: blueberry oat, zucchini banana chocolate chip, zucchini chocolate, carrot berry and golden corn. I especially liked the flavor of the corn muffins, which have actual kernels in them.
Some other new gluten-free products:
Pamela's newest products, Figgies and Jammies bar cookies, come in four flavors: mission fig, strawberry and fig, blueberry and fig, and raspberry and fig. Pamela's is a longtime gluten-free producer, based in Ukiah, with popular flours and baking mixes sold widely.
The cookies are fairly good-sized, 100 calories apiece, with 11 grams of sugar, 2 grams of fat and no artificial additives. My family proclaimed them delicious, and my colleagues ate them happily.
All But Gluten is a new line of Weston Foods, of gluten-free baked goods, including granola bars, bread and other products that adds to the rapidly growing choices for consumers. Unlike many of the gluten-free breads that are sold in the freezer sections, All But Gluten is sold in supermarket baked goods departments.