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Updated January 2022
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Buying guide for best gluten-free breads

People follow a gluten-free diet for a number of reasons. Some follow it because they don’t like the taste of wheat or want to limit their intake of carbs, while others suffer from gluten intolerances or sensitivities. Gluten-free bread used to have the reputation of being flavorless, but today there are bountiful options when it comes to bread. Gone are the days of crumbly or cardboard-like gluten-free bread. Thanks to the many types of flour available on the market, there is plenty of variety in gluten-free bread, all of them made with unconventional ingredients that help them mimic traditional bread.

When buying gluten-free bread, carefully read the ingredients list and, if possible, steer clear of any that have lots of preservatives and artificial sweeteners. You can buy gluten-free bread pre-baked or in a mix if you want to experiment with baking your own at home. If you suspect that products with gluten are causing issues for you, consult a doctor before going on a gluten-free diet.

We’ve put together this guide to help you navigate the process of choosing a delicious gluten-free bread that fits your needs.

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Eating gluten-free can be a helpful solution to the autoimmune condition known as celiac disease.

Key considerations


There are many types of gluten-free flour out there, and they don’t all react the same way as wheat when it comes to baking. Here are the three main markers to measure when choosing a gluten-free bread that is right for you.

  • Airiness: Bread should be light and airy, but it shouldn’t have too many large air holes in the slices because they can ruin a sandwich and make it fall apart at the first bite.

  • Density: Some people prefer more texture in their gluten-free bread, but for the most part, bread should remain soft without being overly gummy, heavy, or wet, problems with some gluten-free products.

  • Structure: There’s nothing worse than building the perfect sandwich just to have it disintegrate before your eyes. The ideal gluten-free bread should hold together without crumbling, even when topped with condiments. That means the bread needs a certain amount of moisture.

Types of flour

Cutting out gluten can sometimes mean cutting out valuable essential nutrients, which is why it’s important to know what’s inside your gluten-free bread. Choosing a blend of gluten-free flour types may offer a more realistic bread flavor, but some people prefer to choose just one flour type to avoid cross-contamination concerns.  Here are some of the most popular flour types used to bake gluten-free bread.

  • Almond: Almond flour, a common replacement for wheat, has a nutty, full-bodied flavor. It’s commonly used in baked goods and as an alternative to breadcrumbs. Almond flour contains many minerals and vitamin E, but it is relatively high in fat and calories.

  • Millet: Made from millet seeds, this flour is often praised for its wheat-like softness paired with a slightly nutty and versatile flavor. It also has more fiber than brown rice flour and is packed with calcium, iron, protein, and various vitamins, including niacin, folic acid, and B-6. Millet may be beneficial to those suffering from inflammation issues.

  • Sorghum: Sorghum flour has been used for thousands of years. It is light in texture with a mild and subtly sweet taste. It can be too dense and heavy to be used on its own, so it’s used in blends instead. Sorghum is high in protein, fiber, and iron and contains more antioxidants than pomegranates or blueberries.

  • Brown rice: This nutty-tasting flour is commonly used for noodles and is more healthful than refined white rice flour. It’s high in fiber, protein, iron, and B vitamins, and it can help lower blood sugar levels while protecting against heart disease.

  • Quinoa: This superfood is a complete protein and packed with nutrients like potassium, phosphorus, vitamins B and E, and all nine essential amino acids. Made from ground quinoa seeds, this flour yields fluffy bread that doesn’t disintegrate.

  • Oat: Made from ground whole oats, this flour often makes bread that is more chewy and crumbly than wheat bread, but it yields more flavor than all-purpose flour. Oat flour is a great way to add moisture to bread, and it also contains beta-glucan fiber, which can lower bad cholesterol, insulin, and blood sugar levels.

  • Corn: Corn flour comes in yellow and white varieties. It has a high fiber content and is also high in the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin, which can benefit eye health and help reduce the risk of cataracts. Corn flour is also high in vitamin B6, magnesium, and manganese.

Other gluten-free alternatives include lentil, chickpea, amaranth, buckwheat, tapioca, coconut and other nuts. Make sure to check labels to be sure a product is certified gluten-free.

Gluten-free bread features

Nutrition facts

Overall, gluten-free bread is slightly higher in fat and lower in protein than other types of bread.

  • Calories: 65 to 100 per slice (Wheat bread averages approximately 80 calories per serving.)

  • Carbohydrates: 11 to 21 grams per slice (Most of the calories in gluten-free bread come from carbohydrates.)

  • Fiber: 0.5 to 2 grams per slice

  • Fat: 2 grams per slice

  • Protein: 2 grams per slice

Health benefits

Gluten-free bread can help you meet your daily iron, protein, fiber, and calcium needs. These loaves are chock-full of vitamins and ingredients that help regulate blood sugar, facilitate weight loss, and prevent heart disease, as mentioned above.

Whether you suffer from a wheat sensitivity, are completely wheat intolerant, or just looking for a lifestyle change, some of the health benefits of going gluten-free include the following:

  • Reduced inflammation and risk of inflammatory diseases

  • Enhanced nutrient absorption

  • More energy

  • Calmer and more balanced moods

  • Less irritability and anxiety

  • Improved digestion and relief from gas, bloating, or constipation


Gluten-free bread used to be considered flavorless, but today, they are available in most of the flavors that gluten-based breads come in, including sourdough, honey wheat, and cinnamon raisin. Many gluten-free breads have a natural flavor to them due to the type of flour that is used.

Ingredients to avoid

Try to stay away from gluten-free bread that contains a lot of artificial colors and sweeteners. The same goes for gluten-free bread that contains fillers, preservatives, stabilizers, or texturizers. These additives may improve taste, but they could negate any other nutritional benefits. Some “gluten-free” bread can even contain trace amounts of gluten.

Potential allergens

Lots of individuals who eat luten  fre Many gluten-free breads are also free of nuts and soy, but they can contain eggs. Similarly, read the labeling to see if there’s any cross-contamination with gluten products. Look out for the following if you suffer from any allergies other than gluten:

  • Dairy

  • Eggs

  • Tree nuts

  • Peanut

  • Wheat

  • Soybeans

Gluten-free bread prices

Going gluten-free can sometimes come with a hefty price tag, but there are lots of affordable options that are just as healthful and flavorful as more expensive products.

Budget-friendly: Any gluten-free bread that costs around $5 to $6 a loaf is reasonably priced, but make sure the bread isn’t loaded with preservatives. This is similar to the average price of a loaf of wheat bread.

Expensive: Gluten-free bread that costs from $7 to $10 a loaf is considered expensive, but the price can vary based on quality and the amount of bread in the package.


  • Check other products for gluten, too. To avoid gluten entirely, check the ingredients list in your cosmetics, hair products, toothpaste, medications, and supplements, too.

  • Stock up on fruits, veggies, legumes, and meat. That way, you’ll always have naturally gluten-free options.

  • Try coconut flour. It brings a naturally sweet and tropical flavor to your dessert recipes while staying gluten-free.

Another product we considered

While our top picks are stellar, there are a couple other products we want to point out. The Ojai Natural Foods BUK Sourdough Gluten-Free Bread contains sprouted buckwheat, and the 32-ounce loaves are larger than your average gluten-free loaf. They come in a two-pack and in multi-seed or honey nut options if sourdough isn’t your preference. Although pricey, this innovative buckwheat and cassava blend doesn’t break apart the way other varieties can, and people with celiac disease rave that you won’t miss gluten after trying this bread.

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There are many gluten-free bread mixes, too, so you can bake loaves according to your own preferences and tweak the ingredients to your heart’s content.


Q. Can gluten-free bread help me lose weight?

A. That depends. For people who don’t have celiac disease but have a sensitivity to gluten, going gluten-free may help with weight loss by reducing inflammation. However, gluten-free rice- and corn-based products may negatively impact your gut bacteria and hinder weight loss.

Q. Are gluten-free foods safe for people with wheat allergies?

A. Not necessarily. Wheat allergies can be different than gluten sensitivity, so be sure to consult with your physician before going on a gluten-free diet.

Q. If I don’t have any digestive issues, what are some possible symptoms of celiac disease or gluten sensitivity?

A. Celiac disease and gluten sensitivity can have symptoms and signs unrelated to digestion, including headaches, depression, joint pain, mouth ulcers, and anemia.

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