Q: Is maltodextrin really gluten-free?
Maltodextrin can sound scary if you are on a gluten-free diet, because it sounds like it would be made from barley malt. However, it does not contain barley. Maltodextrin is a type of partially hydrolyzed starch that is often used as a thickener in foods. It can be made from wheat, but is almost always derived from corn in the United States. If it is made from wheat it has to be declared on the label as an allergen on foods regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) per the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA) either in parenthesis directly after the ingredient containing the wheat or in a “contains statement” following the ingredient listing.
However, even if maltodextrin is derived from wheat, it is generally considered safe for people with celiac disease as gluten is removed during processing.
Confused about other food ingredients? Check out our helpful list of confusing ingredients here:
Reviewed and updated October 20, 2022.
Note: This information is provided by NCA and Katarina Mollo MEd, RDN, LDN, NCA's Director of Education. This information is meant for educational purposes only and is not intended to substitute for personalized medical advice or replace any medical advice provided directly to you by your health care provider. No liability is assumed by the NCA or Katarina Mollo, MEd, RDN, LDN by providing this information.