Is whiskey gluten free? Whiskey is gluten free, and it is because of the distillation process. The distillation of whiskey separates most of the gluten but if the distillation isn’t done properly, it can potentially contaminate the whiskey. There is a risk of cross-contamination if whiskey is processed in a facility that carries gluten containing ingredients.
The only time that gluten could be found in the whiskey is if there is trace amounts due to cross contamination during the processing part in the manufacturing facility. Or possibly gluten containing ingredients were added to the whiskey product after the distillation process which can happen.
Is whiskey gluten free? Photo credit: iStock- AlexRaths
Here are some whiskey brands as an example that are made with gluten containing grains:
- Jim Beam Bourbon
- Wild Turkey Bourbon
- Jack Daniel’s Whiskey
- Crown Royal Canadian Whiskey
- Johnny Walker Scotch
- Knob Creek Whiskey
- Glenfidditch Scotch
Even though some whiskey you may purchase says gluten free, that is not a 100% guarantee unless there is a gluten free certification seal.
Here are some other gluten free based option whiskeys that are made of corn or millet.
- Koval Millet Whiskey
- Koval Bourbon Whiskey
- Hudson Baby Bourbon
- Queen Jennie Sorghum Whiskey
- James F.C. Hyde Sorgho Whiskey
- New Southern Revival Sorgho Whiskey
And the most important thing to remember is if you do drink whiskey to do it within moderation. Try not to exceed one standard drink per day for women and two standard drinks per day for men.
The Bottom Line is whiskey is gluten free because of its distillation. But it is important to know that 100% of gluten may not be completely removed from the distillation process.
And there could be possible cross contamination when it comes to small traces of gluten being in the product after the distillation process. Be mindful of that and the only way to know that whiskey is 100% gluten free is if it has that gluten free certification label.
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- Panda R, Garber EAE. Detection and Quantitation of Gluten in Fermented-Hydrolyzed Foods by Antibody-Based Methods: Challenges, Progress, and a Potential Path Forward. Front Nutr. 2019 Jun 28;6:97. doi: 10.3389/fnut.2019.00097. PMID: 31316993; PMCID: PMC6611335.
- DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau- https://www.ttb.gov/images/pdfs/rulings/2014-2.pdf
- Celiac Disease Foundation- https://celiac.org/gluten-free-living/what-is-gluten/sources-of-gluten/
- IARC Working Group on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans. Alcohol Consumption and Ethyl Carbamate. Lyon (FR): International Agency for Research on Cancer; 2010. (IARC Monographs on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans, No. 96.) 1, Exposure Data. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK326559/
- Gunzerath L, Faden V, Zakhari S, Warren K. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism report on moderate drinking. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2004 Jun;28(6):829-47. doi: 10.1097/01.alc.0000128382.79375.b6. PMID: 15201626.