Pirate’s Booty is a popular puffed corn and rice snack produced by Robert’s American Gourmet Foods. With its crunchy texture and variety of flavors, it has become a favorite snack for many. But is Pirate’s Booty actually safe for those with celiac disease or who follow a strict gluten-free diet?
Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder triggered by consuming gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye. For those with celiac disease, eating gluten causes damage to the small intestine and can lead to symptoms like abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhea, constipation, nausea and fatigue. The only treatment for celiac disease is strictly adhering to a gluten-free diet by avoiding all foods and products containing gluten.
When scanning ingredient labels, terms like wheat, barley, rye, malt and brewer’s yeast can indicate the presence of gluten. Oats are naturally gluten-free but are often contaminated with gluten during growing and processing. For celiacs, it is essential to consume certified gluten-free oats to ensure purity.
Is Pirate’s Booty Actually Gluten-Free?
The good news is that yes, Original Pirate’s Booty and Pirate’s Booty Fruity Booty are certified gluten-free to less than 10 ppm. This means both products have been third-party tested to verify they contain less than 10 parts per million of gluten. For reference, the FDA defines gluten-free foods as containing less than 20 ppm of gluten.
Pirate Brands clearly labels these two products as “Certified Gluten Free” on the front of the package. The website also states that Original Pirate’s Booty and Fruity Booty are certified gluten-free.
So in terms of the two original Pirate’s Booty products, you can feel confident they are safe and allowable on a strict gluten-free diet, to the level of less than 10 ppm of gluten.
Ingredient List for Original Pirate’s Booty
To completely understand if a product is gluten-free, it is always smart to review the ingredients list and nutrition facts label.
The ingredients list for Original Pirate’s Booty is:
– Rice Flour
– Corn Grits
– Aged Cheddar Cheese (Pasteurized Milk, Cheese Cultures, Salt, Enzymes)
– Rice Bran Oil
None of these ingredients contain gluten, making Original Pirate’s Booty an inherently gluten-free snack.
Ingredient List for Fruity Booty
Fruity Booty contains:
– Rice Flour
– Corn Grits
– Aged Cheddar Cheese (Pasteurized Milk, Cheese Cultures, Salt, Enzymes)
– Rice Bran Oil
– Fruit Juice Concentrates (for color)
– Natural Flavors
– Turmeric Extract (for color)
– Annatto Extract (for color)
Again, the ingredients are gluten-free. The fruit juice concentrates, natural flavors and coloring agents do not contain gluten.
Other Pirate’s Booty Products
While the Original and Fruity Booty varieties are certified gluten-free, some other Pirate Brands products do contain gluten:
– Pirate’s Booty Crunchin’ Treasures contain wheat-based ingredients and are not gluten-free.
– Pirate’s Booty Baked Twists are NOT gluten-free or certified gluten-free. They contain wheat flour.
– Pirate’s Booty Veggie Booty Snacks are NOT certified gluten-free. They contain oat fiber sourced from gluten-containing grains. The facility also processes wheat-based foods.
So it’s important to double check the specific variety you are purchasing. Only Original Pirate’s Booty and Fruity Booty are labeled gluten-free to under 10 ppm. Other products under the Pirate’s Booty line contain gluten or may be cross-contaminated.
Pirate Brands states that Original Pirate’s Booty and Fruity Booty are produced in a dedicated gluten-free facility. No gluten-containing ingredients are used on the same manufacturing lines. This dramatically reduces the risk of cross-contamination.
The products are also third-party tested for gluten both before and after production. This verifies the finished products contain less than 10 ppm of gluten.
Are Oats Used in Pirate’s Booty Production?
As mentioned earlier, oats require special handling to avoid gluten cross-contamination. Thankfully, neither Original Pirate’s Booty nor Fruity Booty contain oats or any oat-derived ingredients.
The products are made from just rice, corn, aged cheddar cheese and oils. Oats are not used at any point in the production process.
Can Kids with Celiac Disease Eat Pirate’s Booty?
Yes, kids with celiac disease can safely enjoy Original Pirate’s Booty and Fruity Booty as certified gluten-free snacks. Since the products are third-party tested to less than 10 ppm of gluten, they fall well below the FDA gluten-free labeling standard.
Just be sure to double check the specific flavor – only Original and Fruity varieties are labeled gluten-free. Others may contain gluten. Teach kids to look for the words “gluten-free” stamped clearly on the front of the package.
As always, discuss introducing new foods with your child’s doctor and watch for any reactions. But Pirate’s Booty’s Original and Fruity Booty can be considered celiac-safe based on ingredient labels and manufacturing controls.
Traveling with Pirate’s Booty
Pirate’s Booty makes an excellent travel snack for those eating gluten-free. The single-serve bags are portable and non-perishable at room temperature. The puffs aren’t easily crushed, so they travel well.
When flying, consider packing Original or Fruity Booty in your carry-on bag. This reduces the risk of your gluten-free snacks getting contaminated by other passenger items in the overhead bins.
If bringing the snack on a cruise or to an all-inclusive resort, contact the company ahead of time to verify their gluten-free handling procedures. In destinations with a shared kitchen, cross-contact is a greater concern.
Is Pirate’s Booty Nut-Free?
Yes, all Pirate’s Booty products, including the gluten-free varieties, are peanut-free and tree nut-free. They are produced in a nut-free facility.
This makes Pirate’s Booty not only gluten-free but also safe for those with peanut allergies or tree nut allergies. The snack can be enjoyed by people with celiac disease, nut allergies or other dietary restrictions.
Pirate’s Booty Nutrition Facts
Here is a comparison of the nutrition facts for 1 ounce (about 1 cup) of Original Pirate’s Booty vs Fruity Booty:
|Nutrition Facts||Original Pirate’s Booty (1 oz)||Fruity Booty (1 oz)|
As you can see, Fruity Booty is slightly higher in carbohydrates and sugars due to the added fruit juice concentrates. But both offer a gluten-free, nutritious snack option.
Portion control is important, as the calories and carbs can add up quickly if you eat more than one serving size. Stick to a 1-ounce portion for a 100 to 140 calorie snack.
Pirate’s Booty tends to cost more than regular off-brand puffed corn or cheese snacks. Expect to pay $0.50 to $1.00 more per bag.
Here are some average prices for Pirate’s Booty:
– Single serving bag (1 oz): $1.00 to $1.50
– Multipack (30 count, 1 oz bags): $30 to $35
– Large bag (4 oz): $3.50 to $4.50
For comparison, a regular bag of cheese puffs may cost $2.50 to $3.00 for 4 ounces. So you will pay a premium for the gluten-free Pirate’s Booty brand. But it ensures safety if you have celiac disease.
You can occasionally find Pirate’s Booty on sale at major grocery stores for 10 to 20% off. Stock up if you see a deal.
Where to Buy Pirate’s Booty Gluten-Free
You can find Original and Fruity Booty Pirate’s Booty at most major supermarkets like Walmart, Target, Kroger, Safeway and more. It’s usually sold in the snacks or natural foods aisle.
Pirate’s Booty is also available online from retailers like Amazon, Thrive Market, Vitacost and elsewhere. Purchasing online tends to offer the lowest prices, especially if buying in bulk.
Some grocery delivery services like Instacart allow you to order Pirate’s Booty directly to your home. This is a convenient option if mobility issues make shopping difficult.
You can also buy directly from the Pirate Brands website. They offer variety packs and subscriptions for regular delivery.
Is There a Pirate’s Booty Recall?
As of November 2022, there are no current recalls or safety notices for Pirate Brands snacks. The products are considered safe to consume.
Of course, always check the FDA website periodically for the latest food recalls. But overall Pirate’s Booty has a strong safety track record and rigorous gluten testing.
Pirate’s Booty Reviews
Pirate’s Booty receives mostly positive reviews from gluten-free consumers:
– “My son and I both have celiac disease and happily eat the Original Pirate’s Booty for a crunchy, gluten-free snack.”
– “I’ve never gotten sick from eating Pirate’s Booty products labeled gluten-free. It gives me peace of mind seeing the certification.”
– “We always bring small bags of Fruity Booty in my daughter’s lunchbox since the school is nut-free too.”
– “I wish more gluten-free brands would third party test to that level of less than 10 ppm. You really can’t go wrong with certified Pirate’s Booty.”
A few negative comments mention the snack being easily crushed and coming in a lot of packaging waste. But most reviews praise the taste, crunch and gluten-free safety.
Gluten-Free Snack Alternatives
If you get bored with Pirate’s Booty’s limited flavors, there are other gluten-free puffed corn and rice snacks to try:
– Hippeas Organic Chickpea Puffs
– Wonderfully RAW Pili Puffs
– Lesser Evil Avocado Puffs
– Pipcorn Cheese Balls
– Good Health Veggie Sticks
– Lundberg Organic Rice Cakes
Popcorn and popcorn chips are also naturally gluten-free options. Just beware of flavored varieties with malt or risky seasoning blends.
Overall Pirate’s Booty remains a top choice for safe gluten-free snacking. But explore similar puffed and popped snacks to keep your tastebuds excited.
Is a Gluten-Free Diet Healthy?
For those with celiac disease, a strict lifelong gluten-free diet is medically required. But for people without celiac, going gluten-free can be a mixed bag.
Potential benefits of a gluten-free diet include:
– Fewer processed foods and more whole foods
– Increased fruits, vegetables and lean proteins
– Weight loss
– Improved gastrointestinal symptoms
– More energy
– Better cholesterol levels
However, there are some drawbacks to consider:
– Difficulty getting enough fiber
– Reduced intake of enriched grains
– Higher grocery costs
– Possible social challenges
– Risk of gluten cross-contact
People without celiac disease should approach going gluten-free cautiously and speak to a doctor first. There is no evidence that gluten is inherently harmful for most people.
Focusing on total diet quality is most important – not just avoiding gluten. But for medical needs like celiac disease, gluten avoidance is vital.
Is Pirate’s Booty Good For Weight Loss?
Like any food, Pirate’s Booty can be part of a healthy weight loss diet when eaten in moderation. It provides a crunchy, flavored snack for 180 calories or less per serving.
The puffed rice and corn offer a lighter alternative to greasy chips when a salty craving strikes. Just beware of mindless overeating directly from the bag.
For maximum fullness, enjoy Pirate’s Booty alongside protein like yogurt, hard-boiled eggs, or nut butter. Protein increases satiety and balances blood sugar.
Avoid thinking of certain foods as “good” or “bad.” Pirate’s Booty can fit into a balanced gluten-free diet contributing to weight loss, just track your portions.
When shopping the snack aisle, the Pirate’s Booty brand can be a safe bet for those requiring a gluten-free diet. Original Pirate’s Booty and Fruity Booty are certified gluten-free to less than 10 ppm through third-party testing.
The snacks are produced in a dedicated facility and undergo rigors controls to avoid gluten cross-contact. Plus Pirate’s Booty is free from major allergens like nuts.
While not all Pirate’s Booty products are gluten-free, the Original and Fruity varieties provide a crisp, satisfying gluten-free snack. Just maintain proper portion sizes and enjoy Pirate’s Booty as part of an overall healthy eating pattern.