Gluten is a mixture of proteins that help retain the elasticity of certain food items. Most cooking oils, in general, are naturally gluten free. For example, peanut oil and canola oil are some of the common gluten free cooking oils. But, is sesame oil gluten free?
Sometimes, cross-contamination and usage of additives might happen. This step would often add gluten to the natural oils. Sesame oil, on the other hand, is naturally gluten free. But, it also has the risk of cross-contamination.
Wheat, rye, and barley are rich in gluten. Most people can digest gluten easily. But many are gluten intolerant. For those people, gluten free food items are a blessing. Hence, if you buy gluten free sesame oil, you should read this article before! Let’s find out!
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Is Sesame Oil Gluten Free?
Like most cooking oils, sesame oil is gluten free in its natural state. The reason that it is gluten free is because we get sesame oil from sesame seeds and not from grains, which usually contain gluten. Sesame seeds do not contain gluten. Hence, in its natural form, sesame oil is gluten free.
Lack of gluten makes it very safe for gluten allergic people or those with celiac disease. Celiac disease is a more severe version of gluten intolerance.
Even though sesame is gluten free, you should opt for brands with gluten free labels. One should be more careful, especially if one is severely allergic to gluten. After all, it is always better to be safe than sorry. There are a lot of brands that provide products with clear gluten free labels.
What Is Sesame Oil, and How Is It Made?
As the name suggests, sesame seeds produce sesame oil. You can use both toasted and raw seeds to make this oil. One can find its reference in Ayurveda too, and people have been growing sesame plants (Sesamum indicum) for ages.
One can benefit a lot from sesame oil. Sesame oil is rich in healthy fatty acids (omega-3 and omega-6). You will come across these benefits more clearly as you keep reading.
One can trace the history of sesame plants back to Africa. Later, people continued growing these plants in China, India, Myanmar, Egypt. Now, these countries have become some of the largest manufacturers of sesame.
Related:- Is Canola Oil Have Gluten?
How to Make Sesame Oil at Home?
You can even prepare sesame oil at home! Preparing homemade sesame oil is easy. Follow these steps below:
- First, toast the seeds till they turn golden brown.
- Choose any cooking oil, and mix it with the seeds. Preferably, mix 1 cup or 237 ml of oil with 59 g of sesame seeds.
- Now heat the mixture on your stovetop for 5-7 minutes on a medium heat setting.
- Now blend the seeds and the oil properly in a blender until the seeds break into small pieces.
- Once done, let the mixture sit for 45 minutes.
- The sesame oil will then float at the top that you can collect and store.
You can store it in the refrigerator and keep it for an extended period.
Where to Buy Sesame Oil?
You can find the regular sesame oil in most grocery stores. It is usually present in the aisle, which contains other cooking oils. Toasted sesame oils might not be available in general stores or can be present in the international foods aisle. It is a pretty popular ingredient in Asian food recipes. You can also order this online on online shopping platforms like Amazon.
Is Sesame Oil Soy-Free, Vegan, and Dairy-Free?
Along with being gluten free, sesame oil is soy-free as well. Hence, people who do not want to consume gluten or soybean oil can opt for sesame oil. Also, sesame seeds and sesame oil are vegan and do not contain dairy products. These properties make it safe for consumption for vegans and lactose-intolerant people.
Is Sesame Oil Good for You?
Sesame oil is rich in antioxidants. It is prevalent in Asia as cooking oil, as well as for other health benefits.
- Firstly, sesame oil (especially the toasted one) enhances the taste of the food. It has a rich nutty flavor.
- Secondly, sesame oil supposedly contains healthy fats suitable for your heart. This oil is also rich in Vitamin E.
- The usage of sesame oil is not recent. Taiwanese people have been using this oil for ages for its medicinal value. It included treating toothaches and premenstrual cramps too.
- It might also help in keeping blood sugar levels in check. Vitamin E present in this oil is beneficial for your hair too.
Thus, sesame oil can be very beneficial unless one gets allergic to sesame. Keep reading to know more about sesame sensitivity!
Types of Sesame Oil:
Sesame oil comes in two forms: toasted (or dark sesame oil) and light (regular) sesame oil.
The regular one is generally used as cooking oil and has a mild flavor. It provides Vitamin K and about 880 calories of energy.
We usually do not use toasted sesame oil as a cooking oil. It is mainly used as a finishing product since it is more flavorful than the regular one. If you are looking for a strong and more vibrant flavor, go for the toasted sesame oil.
Some of the best ways to use toasted sesame oil are as follows:
- Using it in soups and salads to enhance the taste.
- Coating noodles
- Dressing popcorn.
Now to answer the original question, “is sesame oil gluten free?” YES! Both regular and toasted sesame oils are gluten free.
Also Read:- Is Beef Jerky Gluten Free?
Sesame Sensitivity: How Serious Is It?
By now, we hope you are already aware of the benefits that sesame oil can provide you. But what about the potential risks? Even for people without gluten intolerance, how safe is sesame oil for them?
At first thought, the most common risk that comes to mind is weight gain. This oil is indeed high in healthy fats, but it is high in calories too. It can also lead to blood sugar dropping too low in some instances.
There is another concern about consuming sesame oil, which is far more severe. The problem is Sesame sensitivity. Survey says that around 0.23% of children and adults are sesame sensitive in the US.
The intensity of sesame sensitivity varies from person to person. It can be a mild allergy or a more severe reaction. Nausea, coughing, hives, swelling, etc., are some common symptoms of sesame allergy. In extreme cases, anaphylaxis is a severe symptom and can lead to cardiac arrest.
In case you are allergic to sesame, you should prefer avoiding the following food items:
- Sesame seeds and the oil obtained from them.
There are some other items that you should be careful about before consuming. They are:
- Noodles dipped in sesame oil
Some cosmetics contain sesame, so you should be cautious while using them.
Sesame Oil Brands That are Gluten Free:
You always have plenty of sesame oil brands to select from when purchasing sesame oil. But, all of them may not be gluten free. Hence, you need to check the label to ensure that you buy the right one.
We did that for you and got you the best gluten free Sesame oil brands you can trust. These products have zero gluten and are perfect for people with celiac disease. Also, they are healthy and aptly priced. Have a look!
- Dynasty sesame oil
- Kikkoman sesame oil
- Trader Joe’s sesame oil
- Kadoya sesame oil
- Imperial Dragon sesame oil
We hope this article has provided all the information about sesame oil. Now, if you haven’t already purchased your favorite sesame oil yet, hit the nearest grocery store.
Sesame oil is gluten free in its natural state. But it is still recommended to have a quick look at the label before buying. You can also elevate the taste of various recipes using this oil. Use it as a miso salad dressing or drizzle it on some ice cream, and you are good to go!
Hence, sesame oil is worth a try.