Before we learn about the various alcoholic beverages which are gluten-free you can have, let's go over the concept of what gluten really is. Basically, gluten is available after processing wheat, barley, corn, oats, and rye. It is a protein composite which makes the dough stretchy, helps it to change form, gives it a flexible texture, and assists it to rise. We eat gluten-based foods everyday, but this isn't the case with some people. Those who suffer from celiac disease, people who can't tolerate gluten in their diet, have a tough time choosing the right alcoholic beverages for themselves. Or do they?
Many experts believe that after the distillation process, the proteins which are found in certain alcoholic beverages are removed. However, different companies which make these spirits can opt to include or refrain from adding gluten in them. Certain spirits like beer, Bourbon, whiskey, liqueurs, and pre-mixed drinks, do contain some percentage of gluten. Hence, it is important that you find out whether or not a particular alcohol has gluten or not. Now that we know what is gluten, let's go over the list of gluten-free alcoholic drinks, and some recipes.
Gluten-free Drinks You Can Enjoy
People who are gluten intolerant will be happy to know that there are many alcoholic beverages that are made without any grain (wheat, barley, corn, oats, or rye); and that's what we will discuss in this article. Apart from the spirits' list given below, The National Institutes of Health claims that after the spirits are distilled, it helps remove the gluten protein molecules. However, the distillation process has to be done properly and for certain amount of times. Only then can you be sure that the beverage is absolutely gluten-free. As for the spirits that don't contain gluten, take a look at the following list.
|Alcoholic Beverages||Alcohol by Volume (ABV)|
|Absinthe||45 to 74%|
|Armagnac (type of brandy)||40%|
|Beer (only 100% gluten-free)||1 to 20%|
|Brandy (almost all types)||40 to 45%|
|Burgundy (cooking wine)||13%|
|Calvados (apple brandy)||40%|
|Champagne (sparkling wine)||4 to 12%|
|Cider||2 to 9%|
|Cognac (type of brandy)||40%|
|Frangelico (herb-flavored liqueur)||20%|
|Fruit Brandy||40 to 45%|
|Gin||37 to 48%|
|Grappa||35 to 60%|
|Kahlúa (coffee-flavored liqueur)||20%|
|Kirschwasser (colorless fruit brandy)||40%|
|Mead (honey wine)||8 to 18%|
|Ouzo (anise-flavored aperitif)||37.5%|
|Pisco (colorless grape brandy)||8 to 10%|
|Port (fortified wine, made with grapes)||19.5 to 20%|
|Schnapps (colorless fruity alcohol)||32%|
|Scotch Whiskey||40 to 94.8%|
|Sherry (fortified wine, made with grapes)||18%|
|Southern Comfort (whiskey liqueur)||15 to 35%|
|Tequila||35 to 55%|
|Triple Sec (orange-flavored liqueur)||15 to 40%|
|Vermouth (fortified wine, made with grapes)||17%|
|Vodka||37 to 62%|
|Whiskey (distilled)||60 to 75%|
|Wine (almost all types)||11%|
Quite a list, isn't it? Even though this is a pretty general list of gluten-free drinks, it is necessary to know which of the different brands in them are made without grains. And depending on your preferences, you can select the ones you like to drink.
Recipes for Gluten-free Alcoholic Drinks
I'm guessing you're not happy with only a list and want some actual drinks to make, right? So let's make it happen. Go over the different recipes mentioned below, and enjoy.
To prepare this rum based cocktail, take 1½ oz. Bailey's Irish Cream, 1½ oz. Bacardi Coco Rum, 1 oz. dark cream de cacao, ½ oz. whipped cream, a splash of green crème de menthe, and a pinch of cayenne peppers. Take a cocktail glass, fill it with ice, and pour the spirits over it. Put whipped cream on top and sprinkle cayenne pepper.
To prepare this Triple Sec based cocktail, take 1¼ oz. white crème de cacao, 1¼ oz. double cream, 1¼ oz. Cointreau orange liqueur, 1 teaspoon Galliano herbal liqueur, ¾ oz. orange juice, cherry, and slice of orange for garnish. In a shaker, add all the ingredients along with few ice cubes. Shake vigorously and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a cherry and a slice of orange.
To prepare this scotch drink, take 1½ oz. scotch, ½ oz. sweet red vermouth, and a cherry for garnish. In a shaker, add scotch and vermouth with some ice cubes. Shake vigorously and strain into a cocktail glass. Add the cherry in and enjoy.
While searching for gluten-free alcoholic beverages, it's important to have complete knowledge of the different spirits available in the market. This way, you can make a conformed decision about consuming certain drinks. Also, I'd like to add that, whenever you do consume any of these drinks, please do not drink and drive. ¡Salud!
Note - This article is for informational purposes only. If you are a celiac or gluten intolerant, consult your doctor before consuming any alcoholic beverages that may or may not contain gluten.