What’s gluten-free at Subway?

Subway has become increasingly accommodating for customers seeking gluten-free menu options over the past several years. For those with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity, being able to customize a sandwich with gluten-free ingredients is a huge perk. Subway’s gluten-free menu offers bread, meat, cheese, veggies, and sauce options to build a satisfying sandwich or salad.

What is gluten?

Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye. For most people, consuming gluten is not a problem. However, for those with celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity, gluten triggers an immune response in the body and causes damage to the small intestine. This can lead to symptoms like abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, bloating, fatigue, headache, anxiety, and more. The only treatment for celiac disease is adhering to a strict lifelong gluten-free diet. Limiting gluten intake also helps manage non-celiac gluten sensitivity.

Why go gluten-free at Subway?

Subway recognizes that many of its customers follow a gluten-free diet for medical reasons. By offering gluten-free bread and carefully avoiding cross-contamination with gluten-containing ingredients during prep, Subway provides a fast, convenient gluten-free meal option for those with dietary restrictions. Customers appreciate having a widely available chain restaurant choice when needing a quick gluten-free meal on-the-go.

Gluten-Free Bread

The centerpiece of any Subway sandwich is the bread. Subway introduced gluten-free bread in 2019 after years of research and development. They opted to formulate their own recipe from scratch rather than use a third-party gluten-free bread product in order to achieve tastiness and texture similar to their original breads. Here are some key facts about Subway’s gluten-free bread:

  • It is certified gluten-free to contain less than 20 parts per million gluten.
  • Subway produces the bread in a dedicated gluten-free bakery to prevent cross-contamination.
  • The bread contains wheat starch, which is gluten-free, though the name is confusing to some.
  • It has a blend of whole grains like millet, buckwheat, quinoa, amaranth, and teff.
  • The bread has a soft, light texture similar to Subway’s 9-Grain Wheat and Italian White breads.
  • It toasts well for sandwiches that require toasted bread.
  • The bread has a slightly sweet flavor profile.
  • Each 6-inch gluten-free sub roll contains 150 calories, 2.5g fat, 28g carbs, 4g fiber, and 6g protein.

The availability of the gluten-free bread makes it possible to customize a gluten-free sandwich. Some Subway locations even keep the gluten-free bread in a separate toaster to prevent cross-contamination. Check with your local Subway to see their process.

Gluten-Free Sandwich Options

With gluten-free bread as the foundation, guests can build gluten-free sandwiches choosing from an array of gluten-free ingredients. Subway carries the following gluten-free proteins, cheeses, veggies, and sauces:

Gluten-Free Proteins

  • Rotisserie-Style Chicken
  • Oven-Roasted Turkey Breast
  • Black Forest Ham
  • Roast Beef
  • Steak
  • Chicken Strips
  • Bacon
  • Meatballs

All of Subway’s sliced meat options are gluten-free. The rotisserie-style chicken, steak, chicken strips, meatballs, and bacon are all gluten-free as well.

Gluten-Free Cheeses

  • American Cheese
  • Monterey Cheddar Cheese
  • Pepperjack Cheese

Subway’s classic sliced cheese options are all gluten-free friendly.

Gluten-Free Veggies & Toppings

  • Lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Tomatoes
  • Green Peppers
  • Red Onions
  • Pickles
  • Jalapenos
  • Banana Peppers
  • Avocado
  • Cucumbers
  • Olives

All of Subway’s veggie toppings are gluten-free, meaning you can load up your sub with your favorites.

Gluten-Free Sauces & Dressings

  • Yellow Mustard
  • Spicy Brown Mustard
  • Spicy Mustard Sauce
  • Buffalo Sauce
  • Honey Mustard Sauce
  • Sweet Onion Sauce
  • Ranch Dressing
  • Light Mayonnaise
  • Red Wine Vinaigrette
  • Oil & Vinegar

Subway makes it easy to flavor your gluten-free sub with condiments. Skip the teriyaki and sweet onion sauces, which contain soy sauce.

Gluten-Free Salad Options

In addition to sandwiches, Subway’s salads provide more fresh, gluten-free options without the bread. Specifically, the following salad recipes are safe for gluten-free diets when using a gluten-free dressing:

  • Black Forest Ham Salad
  • Rotisserie-Style Chicken Salad
  • Steak & Cheese Salad
  • Sweet Onion Chicken Teriyaki Salad without teriyaki sauce
  • Turkey Breast Salad
  • Veggie Delite Salad

These pre-determined recipes feature gluten-free proteins, cheeses, veggies, and exclude croutons or other gluten-containing ingredients. You can further customize with extra veggies and gluten-free dressing on the side.

Gluten-Free Breakfast & Eggs

In addition to the sandwiches and salads, those seeking a gluten-free breakfast or egg sandwich at Subway have some options.

Subway’s egg white-only egg patties are gluten-free. Order any bread variety, including the gluten-free sub rolls, with egg whites, cheese, and your choice of veggies for a customized gluten-free egg sandwich.

Subway’s Black Forest Ham, Bacon, Egg & Cheese on gluten-free bread is another gluten-free morning sandwich choice. Simply request to have the regular egg patties substituted with egg whites.

While the subs and flatbreads contain gluten, the Hash Browns and Cinnamon Rolls are also gluten-free at Subway for those wanting a side.

Gluten-Free Kid’s Meals

For parents needing to accommodate gluten-free children, Subway can still be an option.

The kid’s meals feature gluten-free bread, meat, cheese, veggies, and sauces/dressings to assemble sandwiches or salads. Subway allows customization of the kid’s meal, so simply request the gluten-free bread, meats like turkey, ham or roast beef, and any desired toppings and dressing. For variety, kids can also enjoy a gluten-free breakfast sandwich on gluten-free bread with egg whites and cheese for example.

Gluten-Free Sauces & Dressings Recap

Here are the gluten-free sauces and dressings at Subway again as a quick reference:

  • Yellow Mustard
  • Spicy Brown Mustard
  • Spicy Mustard Sauce
  • Buffalo Sauce
  • Honey Mustard Sauce
  • Sweet Onion Sauce
  • Ranch Dressing
  • Light Mayonnaise
  • Red Wine Vinaigrette
  • Oil & Vinegar

Gluten-Free Side Options

While gluten-free sandwiches and salads will be the bulk of your order, Subway has a few gluten-free side options to complement your meal:

  • Chips: Regular chips, Fritos, Baked Lays, and Sun Chips are gluten-free
  • Hash Browns
  • Apple Slices

Some Subway locations also carry gluten-free cookies or other desserts. Inquire with your location directly to see if they offer gluten-free sweets.

Ordering Gluten-Free at Subway

When purchasing gluten-free meals at Subway, keep these tips in mind:

  • Request gluten-free bread and newly opened, uncontaminated ingredients.
  • Specify that you have celiac disease or gluten intolerance.
  • Ask that gloves be changed and that sandwich tools are washed before prep.
  • For extra precaution, ask if the location has separate toasters for gluten-free bread.
  • Check that the employee prepares your order away from other sandwiches containing gluten.
  • Request gluten-free dressings and sauce packets on the side.
  • If dining-in, ask for a manager or supervisor and inquire about what measures they take to avoid cross-contamination.

Being clear and specific about your needs when ordering gluten-free makes a big difference. Some locations are better versed than others. Don’t be afraid to ask questions to ease your mind!

Does Subway Have Gluten-Free Baked Goods?

Subway does not offer gluten-free versions of its freshly baked cookies or other sweets instore. The Hash Browns and Cinnamon Rolls are gluten-free, but these are the only dedicated gluten-free baked goods available. Some locations may bring in gluten-free baked goods on occasion, but this is not common practice. Those following a gluten-free diet should stick with the sandwiches, salads, and sides that are prepared gluten-free.

Subway Gluten-Free Menu Conclusion

Having gluten-free bread makes it possible to enjoy Subway sandwiches on-the-go. With deli meat, cheese, eggs, veggies, and certain sauces as gluten-free options, there is wide customization for subs and salads. While vigilance is required to avoid cross-contamination, Subway makes an effort to accommodate gluten-free requests. The ability to walk into a Subway and leave with a customized gluten-free lunch is a great convenience for those avoiding gluten. Just be sure to clearly communicate your needs related to celiac disease or gluten intolerance. With proper precautions, Subway can be a reliable gluten-free fast food choice.

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