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Gluten-Free Is Here to Stay – How to Tweak Your Menu to Keep Up

Food Service

The “gluten-free” label is becoming more prevalent and gaining popularity among health-conscious consumers and becoming a popular preferred choice. Through the food segment’s gaining attractiveness, this doesn’t seem to simply be a fading trend amongst consumers. Gluten-free appears to be here to stay as a permanent option that restaurant patrons and grocery shoppers are seeking in their daily lives. Companies who make products like pizza dough, cakes and cookies, and even cooking sprays are looking to offer more gluten-free options.

What is gluten and how do you know what it’s in? Gluten is a protein in wheat, barley, rye and some related grains that provide elasticity. These proteins help stretch pizza dough to be extremely thin and still have it come out with a chewy texture. Gluten also assists in the process of how a cake rises. The higher the protein in flour, the more elasticity the made dough will have, and the finished product will be chewier. The difference in the protein in these flours explains the differences in the texture and appearance in cakes and pizza crusts.

Why should you offer gluten-free? Gluten-free products currently form the largest sub-section of the overall “free from” food category. According to a recent report from Spoonshot AI and a New York University study, around one-third of US adults are believed to be looking to reduce the amount of gluten in their diets regardless of any medical diagnosis. This goes to show that consumers see “free from” products as better for them.

What are the options for gluten-free products? There are many different types of flour that have been tested and used in replacement for wheat, rye, or barley and have similar (but maybe not quite perfect) results. Some interesting options include jackfruit flour, okara flour, amaranth flour, breadfruit flour, coffee cherry flour, and orange byproduct flour. Several new products, including gluten-free items, have prominently featured cauliflower this year. In gluten-free formulations, cauliflower often may be combined with other gluten-free ingredients like quinoa flour or xanthan gum to replicate glutinous structures. Cauliflower has been a popular replacement for pizza crusts, pastas, and more with overwhelming success amongst consumers. Fortunately, PLZ offers processes to produce gluten-free pan sprays that will ensure a gluten-free cooking processes.

So, what does this mean? Gluten-free is here to stay and many people are requesting new and improved products and food items that fit these requirements. Restaurants must now accommodate delicious menus that cater to this audience as well as fulfilling the needs of patrons with no dietary restrictions.

In food service, it is important to stay aware of any diet restrictions and how best to operate a business to accommodate that need. Of course, the main concern amongst chefs is taste integrity. It is an on-going battle for anyone in food service to keep up with any new dietary needs without compromising on taste of their products.

PLZ Corp can help you manufacture cooking sprays that can facilitate the process of switching to gluten-free without affecting flavor. These cooking oil sprays would be the perfect substitution for cooking oil, as there is no risk for gluten contamination. In addition to this, PLZ will help you with sprays for a variety of cooking needs, such as baking.

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