GAH! You guys. I am sooooo jazzed that I was invited to write this sponsored post about Cheerios™ going gluten-free. We’ve been waiting for this for years, literally.
My 15-year-old daughter has been on a gluten-free diet since she was 7. She’s always done great with it, mainly because she remembers how bad she felt when she was eating gluten. But there are a few things she’s really missed. Crusty French bread is one. Cheerios is another.
We’ve tried every alternative, gluten-free, O-shaped cereal we can find, but none of them taste anything like real Cheerios. So, my girl has spent eight years wistfully watching her younger siblings enjoy their Honey Nut Cheerios™ (her favorite), lamenting her glutenless lot in life. (Yes, I know there are greater challenges in the world, but give the gluten-free girly her props. We all have our favorite foods that we’d be sad to give up.)
So imagine her giddiness when she found out that Cheerios was making all five Cheerios varieties gluten-free. And then imagine MY giddiness when Cheerios invited me to try them out and write about the experience. JOY JOY JOY in our house!
We already knew we loved Cheerios—the question was, “Would the gluten-free ones taste the same?” Well, that question was immediately answered when my daughter ripped open the box of Honey Nut Cheerios, shoveled a handful into her mouth, and exclaimed, “They’re JUST like I remember!”
Now, I wouldn’t necessarily trust her taste buds, having not had a Cheerio in eight years. But my other two Cheerios-lovers can’t tell the difference, and neither can I. And I’ve been eating Cheerios for almost forty years. So, there you go. 🙂
Here are the whys and hows behind this awesome news:
– Phil Zietlow, an engineer at Cheerios for 50 years, set off on mission to make Cheerios gluten-free when his daughter-in-law was diagnosed with Celiac disease. (Watch this video interview with Phil explaining the whole story, and try not to fall in love with him. Seriously.)
– The main ingredient in Cheerios cereals is oats. Oats are naturally gluten-free, but the way they are harvested, transported, and processed almost always results in contamination from gluten-containing grains. So, regular oats can’t be considered gluten-free.
– Gluten-free oats aren’t grown on a scale that could supply a huge brand like Cheerios. So Phil repurposed some machinery to sift the regular oats to remove the other, gluten-containing grains. Then a team of engineers figured out how to do that sorting process on a massive scale. Brilliant.
– The only Cheerios cereal that contained other gluten grains was MultiGrain Cheerios™. They replaced the wheat and barley in that cereal with millet and sorghum, both naturally gluten-free grains. (I can’t tell any difference in taste, and I was eating a regular box of them a week before the gluten-free ones arrived at my doorstep.)
We had actually never tried Apple Cinnamon Cheerios™. They got a thumbs-up from my gluten-free girl, and my hubby loves them.
So . . . bottom line: Same awesome-tasting cereal, same price, just safe for everyone. Happy day!
(Oh, and just FYI. The Yellow Box Cheerios™ don’t contain any genetically modified ingredients. So if avoiding GMOs is important to you, munch away in bliss.)
Thanks, Phil—and the rest of the folks at Cheerios—for making our mornings a little less complicated. 🙂
This is a sponsored post happily written by yours truly, on behalf of Gluten-Free Cheerios.