The Ultimate Guide to Gluten-Free Grains

There are so many tasty, gluten free grains out there! And tons of great recipes using gluten-free whole grains or flour. Here is a list of the very best.

There are so many tasty, gluten free grains out there! And tons of great recipes using gluten-free whole grains or flour. Here is a list of the very best.

When I first embarked on my gluten-free diet, I had no idea where to begin. I was only giving it a try to see if gluten-free living would reduce my need for an anti-depressant (it did) and give me more energy (it did).

But I didn’t have much of a gluten-free grains plan

Giving up bread seemed like unnecessary torture, and I hadn’t tried many gluten-free grains. What was I going to eat? I ate a lot of oatmeal and rice at first, but those got boring fast—really fast!

That’s when I started experimenting more

I began my gluten-free grains journey with quinoa in place of pasta, and gluten-free flour in my baked goods (and who could give up baked goods completely? I know I didn’t want to!). From there, I branched out to more exotic grains.

almost don’t miss wheat bread

I discovered there are so many tasty, gluten-free grains out there! And tons of great recipes using gluten-free whole grains or flour.

10 of the tastiest gluten-free grains available

Organic Oats
Oats

Another popular gluten free grain, oats are high in fiber and protein. Though many oats are contaminated with gluten because of crop rotation practices, certified gluten free oats are safe for most people with gluten intolerance. Use whole oats in oatmeal, cookies and breads, or use oat flour in a GF flour blend.

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Organic Oats
Wild Rice
Wild Rice

This tasty and nutritious grain is actually not rice at all, but instead a water-grass seed. Found in Minnesota and Canada, wild rice was a staple in the diets of many Native Americans. Use wild rice in the place of white rice in a variety of dishes, or in pilaf or casseroles.

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Wild Rice
Organic cornmeal
Corn

Found in many forms from popcorn to corn flour, corn is another popular gluten free grain. Corn is often genetically modified, so organic varieties are preferable. Use corn meal for breading, corn flour for tortillas, and popcorn for popping!

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Organic cornmeal
Organic brown rice
Brown rice

One of the most popular gluten free grains, brown rice is an inexpensive choice for many. Gluten free rice can be boiled and eaten as a side dish or milled into flour. Brown rice flour is a popular choice for gluten free flour but should be mixed with other GF flours, particularly high protein ones, for best baking results.

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Organic brown rice
Organic Quinoa
Quinoa

High in protein calcium, phosphorous, iron, fiber and B vitamins, quinoa has a slightly nutty taste and can easily take on the tastes of what it’s cooked with, similarly to rice. This seed can also be milled into flour for baking.

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Organic Quinoa
Organic Sorghum
Sorghum

Sorghum originated in northern Africa and is now cultivated in many parts of the world. With a slightly sweet taste and whole wheat-like texture, Sorghum flour is ideal for ginger cookies and spice cakes. Sorghum can also be used to make GF beer.

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Organic Sorghum
Organic amaranth
Amaranth

An ancient Aztec food, Amaranth is very high in the essential amino acid Lysine which makes it a great companion to other less protein rich grains such as corn or sorghum. With an earthy, nutty taste, Amaranth seeds can be cooked, ground into flour or puffed into breakfast cereal.

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Organic amaranth
Organic Buckwheat
Buckwheat

A fruit rather than a grass, buckwheat has been part of many ancient cultures diets. This gluten free grain has a strong wheat flavor that is best combined with other gluten free flours. Add buckwheat flour to bread recipes to add a whole wheat taste and texture.

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Organic Buckwheat
Organic Teff
Teff

A staple food of Ethiopia, Teff is a powerhouse of nutrition, rich in protein, iron, and calcium. With a mild nutty flavor, Teff flour can be used for baking pies, cookies, and breads. Teff grain can also be eaten whole as a side dish or main course.

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Organic Teff
Organic millet
Millet

With a mildy sweet and nutty flavor Millet flour is a great addition to GF baking. Because of its light texture it’s ideal for recipes containing yeast. Millet grains can also be cooked and served like many other grains (boiled and seasoned to taste).

— Shop for —
Organic millet

Organic oats

Another popular gluten free grain, oats are high in fiber and protein. Though many oats are contaminated with gluten because of crop rotation practices, certified gluten free oats are safe for most people with gluten intolerance. Use whole oats in oatmeal, cookies and breads, or use oat flour in a GF flour blend.

Wild rice

This tasty and nutritious grain is actually not rice at all, but instead a water-grass seed. Found in Minnesota and Canada, wild rice was a staple in the diets of many Native Americans. Use wild rice in the place of white rice in a variety of dishes, or in pilaf or casseroles.

Organic brown rice

One of the most popular gluten free grains, brown rice is an inexpensive choice for many. Gluten free rice can be boiled and eaten as a side dish or milled into flour. Brown rice flour is a popular choice for gluten free flour but should be mixed with other GF flours, particularly high protein ones, for best baking results.

Organic cornmeal

Found in many forms from popcorn to corn flour, corn is another popular gluten free grain. Corn is often genetically modified, so organic varieties are preferable. Use corn meal for breading, corn flour for tortillas, and popcorn for popping!

Quinoa

High in protein calcium, phosphorous, iron, fiber and B vitamins, quinoa has a slightly nutty taste and can easily take on the tastes of what it’s cooked with, similarly to rice. This seed can also be milled into flour for baking.

Sorghum

Sorghum originated in northern Africa and is now cultivated in many parts of the world. With a slightly sweet taste and whole wheat-like texture, Sorghum flour is ideal for ginger cookies and spice cakes. Sorghum can also be used to make GF beer.

Amaranth

An ancient Aztec food, Amaranth is very high in the essential amino acid Lysine which makes it a great companion to other less protein rich grains such as corn or sorghum. With an earthy, nutty taste, Amaranth seeds can be cooked, ground into flour or puffed into breakfast cereal.

Buckwheat

A fruit rather than a grass, buckwheat has been part of many ancient cultures diets. This gluten free grain has a strong wheat flavor that is best combined with other gluten free flours. Add buckwheat flour to bread recipes to add a whole wheat taste and texture.

Teff

A staple food of Ethiopia, Teff is a powerhouse of nutrition, rich in protein, iron, and calcium. With a mild nutty flavor, Teff flour can be used for baking pies, cookies, and breads. Teff grain can also be eaten whole as a side dish or main course.

Millet

With a mildy sweet and nutty flavor Millet flour is a great addition to GF baking. Because of its light texture it’s ideal for recipes containing yeast. Millet grains can also be cooked and served like many other grains (boiled and seasoned to taste).

A gluten-free diet may seem daunting at first

But I’m here to tell you that a gluten-free diet is absolutely manageable. A good place to start is with naturally gluten-free foods (fruits and veggies, nut butters, etc), and then slowly add in new gluten-free whole grains. Then when you’re up for it, try baking with gluten-free flour, too.

The trick is to get the blend right

The challenge with gluten-free baking is getting the right blend of flours together. There are many gluten-free flour blends available to purchase, but if you’re hoping to make your own, a good rule of thumb is to not include more than 20 to 30 percent of any one flour.

How about you?

What are your favorite gluten-free grains? How do you use them? Share with us in the comments below!

Genevieve Howland

About the Author

Genevieve Howland is a childbirth educator and breastfeeding advocate. She is the bestselling author of The Mama Natural Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth and creator of the Mama Natural Birth Course. A mother of three, graduate of the University of Colorado, and YouTuber with over 85,000,000 views, she helps mothers and moms-to-be lead healthier and more natural lives.

4 Comments

  1. It is wonderful program and I really enjoyed and appreciated the opening reception.

  2. ALL grains contain gluten. There are over 400 types of gluten. None of these are “gluten free” if you are gluten intolerant do NOT follow this, it’s based on 60 year old science. If you want the latest gluten facts try glutenfreesociety.org. it took me several years to try and eliminate all these “options”. Some may have less difficulty but those who need a truly gluten free solution will continue to have symptoms. Watch also cross contamination and other products. Stamps and envelopes lip stick there are a lot of places gluten can be hidden.

  3. We have been gluten free for over 8 years. The kicker for us is we can’t have oats (even gluten free), corn, white potato, or even rice!
    We use a lot of quinoa and millet especially, but these grains aren’t new to us! Baking really isn’t quick so we just tend to stick with organic fresh fruits and veggies and local meat.

  4. Hi I wondered what your toughest on RayPeat are? As know you have mentioned him a few times? I recently started reading his articles & I know he is anti cod liver oil & pro white sugar. What are your thoughts on his views? Thank you


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