Is Pacific cream of chicken gluten-free?

Quick Answer

Yes, Pacific cream of chicken is gluten-free. Pacific Foods states that all of their broths, including their cream of chicken broth, are certified gluten-free to less than 5 ppm.

What is Pacific cream of chicken?

Pacific Foods cream of chicken is a prepared broth made with chicken stock and cream. It is packaged in aseptic cartons and sold as a liquid concentrate. Pacific Foods is a brand of soup and broth products based in Oregon, USA.

Their cream of chicken broth is made with the following ingredients:

  • Chicken stock
  • Heavy cream
  • Sea salt
  • Black pepper
  • Parsley

It has a creamy texture and rich chicken flavor. The broth can be used as a base for soups, chowders, gravies, and cooking. It provides convenience for quick preparation of recipes requiring chicken broth.

Why broths are sometimes not gluten-free

Many broths and stocks contain gluten-containing ingredients like wheat, barley, rye, or oats. This includes bouillon cubes, soup bases, and some canned and boxed broths.

Sources of gluten may include:

  • Grains like barley, wheat, rye, or oats
  • Starch thickeners derived from gluten sources
  • Malt or malt flavoring
  • Soy sauce containing wheat

Therefore, broth is not automatically gluten-free unless specifically stated by the manufacturer. Checking the ingredients list on all store-bought broths is important for gluten-free diets.

Why Pacific Foods broths are gluten-free

Pacific Foods broths are certified gluten-free because they do not contain any ingredients derived from gluten-containing grains like wheat, rye, barley, and oats.

Instead of using wheat as a thickening agent, their broths use ingredients like potato starch, corn starch, and xanthan gum to provide thickness and texture. These alternative thickeners and stabilizers are derived from gluten-free sources.

Pacific Foods also states that all their broths and soups are produced in a dedicated gluten-free facility. They have strict controls in place to avoid cross-contamination with gluten-containing ingredients.

Third-party certification

Additionally, Pacific Foods voluntarily submits their products for third-party gluten-free certification. Their plant in Oregon is certified gluten-free by NSF International.

NSF certification means the facility and products undergo rigorous auditing and testing to verify gluten levels are below 10 parts per million (ppm). This level of certification provides added assurance to sensitive individuals who require a gluten-free diet.

What Pacific Foods says about gluten content

On their website’s gluten-free FAQ page, Pacific Foods states the following:

All Pacific Foods’ broths, stocks and bisques are certified gluten-free to less than 5 ppm. That’s 1/20th the level of gluten allowed for certification!

They also note that many of their products are certified by the Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG), another third-party certifier of gluten-free products. GIG has a stricter standard of less than 10 ppm of gluten.

So according to Pacific Foods’ own statements, their cream of chicken broth easily meets the requirements for gluten-free status under 20 ppm per the FDA’s standard.

Verifying on the product label

You can also verify the gluten-free status directly on the product label of Pacific Foods cream of chicken broth. The label states “gluten free” under the product name.

The label may also contain certification logos from organizations like NSF International, the Gluten Intolerance Group, or the Celiac Support Association. These logos provide added assurance the product has been third-party tested.

Ingredients list

Checking the ingredients list is another way to verify gluten-free status. Pacific cream of chicken lists:

Chicken Stock, Heavy Cream (Cream, Milk), Sea Salt, Black Pepper, Parsley

No gluten-containing ingredients are included. The broth contains cream as the third ingredient, adding richness and texture.

Calling manufacturer to double check

If ever in doubt, you can always call Pacific Foods directly to ask about their manufacturing processes and allergen protocols.

Their customer service team is available by phone at 800-347-2112. They should be able to definitively confirm whether any product is made in a gluten-free facility and free of cross-contamination risks.

Risk of cross-contamination

Even when a product contains only gluten-free ingredients, cross-contamination during manufacturing is still a potential concern. Trace amounts of gluten could be introduced during the production process if equipment is shared with gluten-containing foods.

This is why third-party audits and testing of both ingredients and the facility are so important for certification. Pacific Foods enforces stringent allergen controls to prevent any cross-contamination of their gluten-free products:

  • Dedicated gluten-free facility
  • Sanitation procedures
  • Allergen control plans
  • Employee training
  • Testing of surfaces and products

Their fork-lift policy even prohibits vehicles that unload gluten-containing ingredients from entering areas where gluten-free foods are exposed. These rigorous preventative measures provide assurance to sensitive individuals.

Does cream contain gluten?

Some people may wonder if the cream itself could contain gluten. Heavy cream does not naturally contain any gluten. Dairy products like milk, cream, butter and cheese do not contain gluten unless a gluten-containing ingredient is added.

The heavy cream used in Pacific cream of chicken broth should be gluten-free. It simply contains cream and milk as indicated on the ingredients statement. No hidden sources of gluten.

Testing Pacific cream of chicken

For those with celiac disease or extreme gluten sensitivity, product testing can provide added assurance about the gluten content of the broth.

There are a few options for testing products:

  • Send out to a lab – There are specialized labs like BioFront Technologies and EMSL Analytical that test food products for gluten. Cost is typically $100-300 per sample. Results are very accurate but it can take up to 2 weeks to get results.
  • Nima sensor – This portable device allows you to test foods for gluten on the spot. It costs about $290 for the sensor and capsules are $5 each. Accuracy is good but there can be some false positives/negatives.
  • Gluten home test kits – These kits allow you to swab a food sample and test it at home. The GlutenTox kit costs around $150. They claim to detect down to 5 ppm but these types of kits can have accuracy issues.

Realistically, advanced testing may not be necessary for a widely-available product with a “gluten-free” label from a reputable company like Pacific Foods. But it provides an extra level of assurance for the very sensitive.

Using Pacific cream of chicken in a gluten-free diet

Pacific cream of chicken can be used in place of homemade chicken broth in many gluten-free recipes. The rich, creamy flavor makes it ideal for soups, stews, gravies, risottos, and cooking grains like rice or quinoa.

Here are some recipe ideas with Pacific cream of chicken broth:

  • Chicken and rice soup – Cook rice in cream of chicken broth seasoned with herbs.
  • Chicken pot pie – Make a creamy filling with chicken, veggies, and cream of chicken.
  • Gluten-free risotto – Use as the cooking liquid for risotto.
  • Casseroles – Adds richness to any casserole recipe.
  • Sauces and gravies – Whisk with cornstarch to thicken sauces.

Canned cream soups can sometimes contain wheat flour or barley as thickeners. So Pacific Foods cream of chicken provides a handy gluten-free alternative for recipes.


Pacific cream of chicken broth is low in calories and fat but provides a boost of protein from the chicken broth:

Nutrition Facts Per 1 cup
Calories 60
Fat 4.5g
Protein 4g
Sodium 580mg

It makes a nice alternative to cream or whole milk in recipes to reduce calories and saturated fat. The sodium content is a little high, so those on low-sodium diets may want to account for that.

Cost and availability

Pacific cream of chicken broth is sold at many major grocery stores such as Safeway, Kroger, Whole Foods, and Target. It’s with the rest of the Pacific Foods broths and soups.

A 33.5oz carton costs around $3. This provides about 4 servings of broth. It’s a bit more expensive than basic chicken broth but the rich creaminess makes it worthwhile for certain recipes. It’s available at a reasonable price point for an occasional cooking ingredient.

Pacific Foods products can also be found online through retailers like Amazon and This provides an option if you can’t find it locally in stores.


Pacific cream of chicken broth scores 4.6 out of 5 stars based on 200+ reviews on the Pacific Foods website. Here’s what buyers have to say:

“This broth is amazing! I use it for everything from cooking rice to making sauces. It has so much more flavor than regular broth.”

“I love using this for gravies and sauces. It makes everything creamy without having to use flour or butter.”

“This is my favorite broth for cooking. The creaminess is so good in soups and stews. Way better than watery broth.”

Most reviews confirm it has an excellent creamy chicken flavor. People love using it for cooking rice, sauces, gravies, and as a soup base. Most say it’s worth the slightly higher price for the convenience and flavor.


Here are some other gluten-free cream soup bases to consider:

  • Imagine Foods Creamy Broths – Similar concept to Pacific Foods with flavors like cream of mushroom, cream of chicken, and cream of celery.
  • Campbell’s cream soups – Select varieties are labeled gluten-free like cream of mushroom and cream of celery.
  • Progresso cream soups – Some flavors are gluten-free, but check labels since not all.
  • Homemade – Make your own creamy soup base from chicken or vegetable broth plus cream and thickeners like cornstarch, potato starch, or xanthan gum.

Pacific Foods has the widest selection of cream broth varieties so it’s a top choice for gluten-free cooking and soup recipes.

The bottom line

Based on the ingredients, manufacturing processes, and third-party certifications, Pacific cream of chicken broth is clearly gluten-free. It can be enjoyed without concern by those following a gluten-free diet due to celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity.

Pacific Foods’ line of broths and soups are produced in a dedicated gluten-free facility to prevent cross-contamination. Their rigorous protocols and testing procedures ensure their products are safe for gluten-free consumers.

So in summary:

  • Pacific cream of chicken broth is certified gluten-free to less than 5 ppm of gluten.
  • It does not contain any gluten-containing ingredients.
  • Manufacturing facility and processes are gluten-free.
  • Can be used without hesitation by those requiring a gluten-free diet.

This tasty broth provides a quick and convenient way to add rich, creamy chicken flavor to gluten-free recipes. It can help spare home cooks the work of making broth from scratch.

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