Gluten Schmuten: Van’s French Toast Sticks

GLUTENSCHUMUTENGluten-free foods are expensive and their flavor profile, in many cases, is suspect. The Al Dente blog is going to work through the good and the bad from the perspective of a toddler who known for her picky eating and her parents. We’ll collect these, as well as the rest of our journey with The Kid’s Celiac disease diagnosis, under the Gluten Schmuten category tag.

On the first Saturday after nutritionist visit, we made an excursion to Syracuse’s eastern suburbs. Natur-Tyme, a local natural health food store, is located on Erie Boulevard East, and one of the largest Wegmans in the chain is stationed on Route 5 heading towards Fayetteville.

Amongst the bounty of products we brought home were Van’s French Toast Sticks. Now, breakfast foods like pancakes and french toast can serve as any of the three meals or a snack around here, so we acquired these with the plan of serving them as a potential dinner that evening.

THE SELL: Start your day with gluten free whole grain goodness and a dash of delicious cinnamon. Van’s Gluten Free Cinnamon French Toast Sticks are a tasty morning meal or afternoon treat. 


THE PACKAGE: A six-slice box found in the freezer case. Each slice has three sticks.

THE INGREDIENTS: Water, Van’s Gluten Free Mix (Brown Rice Flour, Potato Starch, Rice Flour, Soy Flour), Evaporated Cane Syrup, Canola Oil, Baking Powder (Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Baking Soda, Rice Flour, Monocalcium Phosphate), Natural Flavors, Brown Sugar, Sugar, Calcium Carbonate, Cinnamon, Soy Lecithin, Sea Salt, Guar Gum, Cornstarch, Molasses.

THE STATS ON A SERVING: 2 slices has 190 calories, 3.5 grams of fat, 1g dietary fiber, 12g sugar and 30 percent of your daily calcium.

THE COST: $3.29 at Syracuse Wegmans stores.

THE REPLACEMENT: It replaced Eggo French Toast Sticks. An eight-slice box was $2.99.

THE ADULT TASTE TEST: I didn’t taste much of a difference between the gluten-free and conventional varieties. The texture is fine, but they are chewier than the Eggos. This is likely due to the emulsifiers that give them a gummier feel.

THE KID TEST: On the first night, she ate two full slices. To know The Kid is to know that this was a BIG HIT. It has since become a dinnertime staple.

THE VERDICT: A keeper. Our rating scale will go from zero to five. Since we’re talking Celiac disease and I’m a little screwed in the head, we’ll post our score in  healthy villi:



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