Cross Contamination

In the home

As little as 50mg gluten (equivalent to 1/100th of a slice of standard wheat bread) can damage the small intestine of a person with coeliac disease. It is essential to avoid cross contamination with foods containing gluten to maintain a strict gluten free diet once diagnosed with coeliac disease.

Simple procedures for gluten free food preparation remove the risk of cross contamination:

  • Store gluten free products and ingredients in separate sealed containers, and clearly label all foods in the pantry, refrigerator and freezer once they have been removed from original packaging.
  • Separate butter and condiment containers may be necessary if you find that gluten containing crumbs are being left in the condiment.
  • Thoroughly clean bread boards, knives and other cooking utensils used in food preparation.
  • Ensure appliances such as toasters, sandwich makers and grills are clean before preparing gluten free foods.
  • Use separate water in a clean pot for cooking or re-heating gluten free pasta. Use a separate strainer for gluten free pasta or strain it first.
  • Do not dust meats or fish with flour prior to cooking.
  • Do not dust cake tins with gluten containing flour (including wheaten cornflour).
  • Icing sugar mixture commonly contains wheat. Keep this in mind when dusting cakes and slices. Gluten free icing sugar mixture is available.
  • Clean oil should be used when deep frying. If sharing with the family, make sure the gluten free item is fried first and then the gluten containing items. Once a gluten containing item is cooked in the oil, the oil is contaminated with gluten. When eating out, ask if a separate fryer is used for gluten free products or if gluten containing products are used in the fryer.

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