Gluten-free diets have become increasingly popular in recent years, with more and more people choosing to avoid gluten for health or dietary reasons. For those with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity, eating gluten-free is a necessity, not a choice. For others, going gluten-free is seen as a way to generally improve health, lose weight, or simply feel better. Whatever the motivation, finding tasty gluten-free options for foods you love can be challenging at times. Biscuits are a staple of southern cooking and a breakfast favorite for many. But are those fluffy, melt-in-your-mouth biscuits from Immaculate Biscuits actually gluten-free? Let’s take a look.
What is Gluten?
Before we can answer whether Immaculate Biscuits contain gluten, it’s important to understand what gluten actually is. Gluten is a general name for the proteins found in wheat, rye, and barley (Triticeae grains). It acts as a “glue” that helps foods maintain their shape and have a chewy texture. For those with celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS), even small amounts of gluten can trigger an autoimmune reaction that damages the small intestine. This reaction causes a variety of digestive symptoms and health issues. About 1% of the population has celiac disease, while 6-7% are estimated to have NCGS.
Some of the common symptoms caused by gluten exposure in gluten-sensitive individuals include:
- Diarrhea, constipation, vomiting
- Bloating, gas, abdominal pain
- Fatigue, joint pain, headaches
- Skin rashes
- Mood issues such as anxiety, depression
- Weight loss or gain
For those with gluten sensitivity, following a strict gluten-free diet by avoiding all foods and products containing wheat, rye, barley, and their derivatives is the only treatment.
Are Biscuits Typically Gluten-Free?
Biscuits are traditionally made with wheat flour, which contains gluten. The gluten in biscuit dough helps create the layered, flakey texture biscuits are known for when baked. Most basic biscuit recipes call for 2-3 cups of all-purpose flour, which always contains gluten. Whole wheat flour is also commonly used to add a little more nutrition, but it also contains gluten.
Some typical ingredients in basic biscuit recipes include:
- All-purpose (wheat) flour
- Baking powder
- Cold butter
- Milk or buttermilk
As you can see, wheat flour is the main ingredient. So most standard biscuits made with common recipes are not naturally gluten-free. However, there are ways to adapt recipes to make delicious gluten-free biscuits.
Gluten-Free Flour Options for Biscuits
While wheat flour contains gluten, there are several gluten-free grain and starch alternatives that work well in baking. Here are some of the most commonly used:
- Gluten-free all-purpose flour – Made from a blend of other gluten-free flours, starches, and gums. Mimics wheat flour.
- Rice flour – Ground rice grains. Light texture.
- Tapioca starch/flour – From cassava root. Provides structure.
- Sorghum flour – Adds protein and fiber. Dense, heavy texture.
- Cornstarch – Light texture and binding abilities.
- Potato starch – Helps with rising and moisture retention.
- Sweet rice flour – Soft, starchy texture.
Using a mix of these gluten-free options can help replicate the properties of wheat flour in biscuits. Adding binding agents like xanthan gum also helps recreate that fluffy biscuit texture. With some recipe adjustments, you can make tasty gluten-free biscuits at home. But what about Immaculate Biscuits?
Are Immaculate Biscuits Gluten-Free?
Immaculate Biscuits is a popular commercial brand of refrigerated biscuits you can find in many grocery store freezer sections across the United States. While Immaculate’s biscuits are flakey, buttery, and delicious, unfortunately they are not gluten-free.
According to the company, their standard biscuits contain wheat flour as the main ingredient. So they do contain gluten. Immaculate does not offer any gluten-free biscuit products at this time. Their full ingredient list includes:
- Enriched bleached wheat flour (wheat flour, niacin, iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid)
- Palm oilshortening (palm oil, soybean oil, hydrogenated palm oil, mono and diglycerides, and soy lecithin [emulsifier])
- Leavening (sodium aluminum phosphate, baking soda)
As you can see, wheat flour is clearly listed as the first ingredient. So Immaculate’s original biscuits contain gluten and would not be safe for anyone following a gluten-free diet.
Are There Any Similar Gluten-Free Options?
While Immaculate’s regular biscuits contain gluten, there are some other brands that make gluten-free frozen biscuits similar to Immaculate. Here are a few good options to look for:
- Kinnikinnick Foods Gluten Free Biscuits – All-purpose gluten-free flour blend. Dairy-free.
- Against the Grain Gourmet Gluten-Free Biscuits – Made with tapioca starch, sorghum flour, and xanthan gum.
- Cup4Cup Gluten Free Biscuit Mix – Make your own biscuits.CONTAINS milk.
Kinnikinnick and Against the Grain are brands that make pre-made frozen gluten-free biscuits you can bake at home similar to Immaculate. Cup4Cup is a gluten-free biscuit mix you combine with your own wet ingredients to bake.
While these won’t be exactly the same as Immaculate in terms of taste and texture, they provide a comparable gluten-free alternative. You’ll have to check the ingredients carefully though, as some contain dairy. Always read labels thoroughly before consuming any product if you have food allergies or sensitivities.
Tips for Making Your Own Gluten-Free Biscuits
If you want 100% control over the ingredients, making your own gluten-free biscuits from scratch may be your best option. Here are some tips:
- Use a blend of gluten-free flours – Try an all-purpose blend, sorghum flour, tapioca starch, potato starch, etc.
- Xanthan gum helps mimic gluten
- Don’t overwork the dough – Keep a light touch when handling.
- Frozen dough makes for easier handling.
- Add acidic ingredients like yogurt or buttermilk.
- Use light fats like olive oil or coconut oil.
- Brush biscuits with milk or butter before baking for a nice browning.
It may take some experimenting to get the perfect texture, but baking your own allows for total control over the ingredients. Substituting different dairy-free milks and fats makes it easy to adapt recipes for your own dietary needs.
Gluten-Free Biscuit Recipe
Here is a basic recipe to try for easy gluten-free biscuits:
|Gluten-free all-purpose flour
|2 1/2 teaspoons
- Preheat oven to 450°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment.
- In a bowl, whisk together the flour, potato starch, baking powder, salt, and sugar.
- Using a pastry cutter or fork, cut in the cold butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Add in milk and stir just until combined into a sticky dough.
- Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead a few times.
- Pat or roll dough to 3/4″ thickness. Cut biscuits using a biscuit cutter or the rim of a cup.
- Arrange biscuits on prepared baking sheet. Brush tops with extra milk if desired.
- Bake 12-14 minutes until lightly golden brown. Allow to cool 5 minutes before serving.
Let the biscuits fully cool before storing any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one week. Reheat in microwave before enjoying.
The Bottom Line
So are Immaculate Biscuits gluten-free? Unfortunately no, they contain wheat flour and are not currently offered in a gluten-free version. However, there are several alternatives available for those looking for a pre-made frozen gluten-free biscuit. Reading labels carefully and contacting companies directly with any questions is the best way to determine if a product is gluten-free if it is not explicitly stated. Making your own gluten-free biscuits at home gives you full control over the ingredients. With some modifications and gluten-free flour blends, you can whip up biscuits that are just as flakey and delicious as the original Immaculate version.