If you’re hoping for a nice, tasty lunch, complete with a pizza vibe and without the trouble of ordering out, Hot Pocket may sound right up your alley! However, if you have a gluten allergy, you may be wondering: is there such a thing as a gluten free Hot Pocket?
Hot Pockets, made by the Nestle Company, are not typically gluten-free. Gluten is a protein which is generated in types of grain, such as barley, rye, and wheat. Nestle Hot Pockets are made with more than one gluten-containing flour, and are not gluten-free. However, it is possible to make your own gluten-free Hot Pocket recipe, and some brands are gluten free.
In this article, we’ll cover not only what gluten is and which Hot Pockets ingredients include it, but also a recipe for making your own gluten-free Hot Pockets and some frequently asked questions on the topic!
How To Tell If Hot Pockets Are Gluten Free
If you want to make sure that store-bought Hot Pockets like the Nestle brand are not gluten-free, then the best way to go about it is to understand which ingredients contain gluten and check for those! First, we’ll break down what gluten actually is. Then we’ll go over Nestle’s recipe for Hot Pockets so you can know without a doubt why they are not gluten-free!
What is Gluten?
The word gluten is a name for the protein that is created in several different types of grain. These types of grain are:
- Wheat grain – Used to make many common foods including, but not limited to: bread, flour, pasta, and most cereals.
- Barley grain – Another popular, mainstream grain used to make: beer and other alcoholic drinks, natural sweeteners, and porridge. Barley grain is usually used along with wheat grain to make things like pastries and pancakes.
- Rye Grain – You’ll most commonly hear rye grain as a component of rye bread, flours, and rye beer or whiskey. However, it’s berries are also sometimes sold and eaten naturally.
- Triticale – Triticale may not have the word grain in it, but it is a combination of wheat and barley and it does contain gluten. It is used in making tortillas, cakes, breads, and cookies, though it is possible to find it in one of the biggest gluten-containing culprits on the market: malt. Malt is used to make malt flour and milkshakes.
The protein each of these grains contains, gluten, is great as both a binding agent and a source of protein and nutrients for some people. However, for others with a gluten allergy, it can bring nothing but pain in the form of intestinal inflammation or, in the case of celiac disease, even worse health issues.
For this reason, many substitute gluten-containing ingredients with gluten-free alternatives, or look for a store-bought food without this protein. That’s why it is so important to understand what ingredients go into Hot Pockets you can purchase off the shelf, like Nestle’s product!
What is in Hot Pockets?
In the Nestle version of the Hot Pocket recipe, the following gluten ingredients are included:
- Malted Barley Flour
- Wheat Flour
- Enriched Flour
Though these are not the only ingredients in most Hot Pocket products, they are a staple, and they all include amounts of the gluten protein. Therefore, since we’ve covered which ingredients do contain gluten and found them present in Hot Pockets, it is safe to say that Hot Pockets are not gluten-free!
Are There Gluten Free Substitutes to Hot Pockets?
Yes, there are ways to get pizza-like foods similar to Nestle’s Hot Pockets, but without the gluten content! Listed below are two ways to replace Hot Pockets:
- Mikey’s Cheese Pizza Pockets – These cheese pizza pockets are gluten free as well as dairy free. They are entirely plant-based, meaning they are a great option for vegan eaters, as well. They can be found in most grocery stores.
- Make Your Own – It may seem intimidating, but it is not impossible to make your own pizza-pocket foods without gluten. Simply get a gluten-free puff pastry dough from your local store, then fold it together with cheese, marinara sauce, and toppings of your choice! Then, bake the whole thing on a cooking sheet at about 420 degrees!
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some frequently asked questions related to gluten and Hot Pockets!
Are any Hot Pockets gluten free?
No, there are no Hot Pockets that are made by the original Hot Pocket brand, Nestle, which do not contain gluten. Even with a large amount of variety in their products, all traditional Hot Pockets contain several types of flour, which, in turn, have gluten in them.
However, there are some alternative brands that do produce pizza-pockets very similar to Hot Pockets, but without gluten! One popular gulten-free brand is Mickey’s Cheese Pizza Pockets.
Are pepperoni Hot Pockets gluten free?
If the pepperoni Hot Pockets you’re about to buy are produced by the Nestle company, it is important to note that they are not gluten-free. All Hot Pockets made by the Nestle company contain wheat flour and malt flour, which contain the gluten protein.
Are Pizza Rolls Gluten Free?
No, the traditionally sold frozen pizza rolls made by Totino’s are not gluten-free. They contain wheat flour in the makeup of that delicious crust. However, other brands, like Feel Good Foods, do create a similar pizza roll product that is gluten-free!
Is pepperoni gluten free?
Yes, by itself, pepperoni meat is gluten-free. This is thanks to the fact that a pepperoni is not, on it’s own, one of the types of food that contains the gluten protein. However, some pre-prepared pepperoni may be seasoned with products that contain gluten, like rye grain, so be sure to check the ingredients included on pepperoni.
In conclusion, Hot Pockets that are created by the brand Nestle are not gluten free. The crust of a traditional Hot Pocket is made with gluten-containing flours like wheat and malt. However, those with a gluten allergy or celiac disease can choose to either pick a different pizza pocket brand, like Mikey’s Pizza Pockets, or create their own gluten-free alternative!