Tim Horton’s Gluten-Free
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Jan 5 2012

Tim Horton’s Gluten-Free

If you have ever been inside a Tim Horton’s, you know that there don’t seem to be a lot of gluten-free options to choose from.  I happened to meet a friend there the other day and was discouraged when I was really hungry, yet the employees on duty didn’t have any idea if they had any gluten-free choices other than fruit.  I made a mental note to not only check into the gluten-free options when I got home, but to share what I found with you all as well.

Upon browsing the Tim Horton’s website, I found that they do indeed have an allergen list.  I knew that there wouldn’t be any magically appearing gluten-free doughnuts, but I wanted to be better prepared the next time I was at Tim Horton’s, as I really like their coffee.  I hadn’t made Tim Horton’s one of my priorities in the past because they weren’t on any of my daily routes.  With a new location in my gym parking lot, I see that changing in the near future.

After perusing the allergen list, I found that the following items don’t contain any gluten (USA):

  • Iced cappuccino (with milk, chocolate milk or cream)
  • Iced cappuccino supreme
  • Mocha iced capp
  • Iced coffee
  • Iced mocha
  • Iced chill mocha
  • Strawberry Banana Smoothie with yogurt
  • Strawberry Banana Smoothie without yogurt
  • Mixed Berry Smoothie with yogurt
  • Mixed Berry Smoothie without yogurt
  • Frozen Lemonade
  • Real Brewed Iced Tea
  • Coffee
  • Decaffienated Coffee
  • Hot Chocolate
  • White Hot Chocolate
  • French Vanilla Cappuccino
  • English Toffee Cappuccino
  • Café Mocha
  • Caramel Café Mocha
  • Apple Cider
  • Caramel Apple Cider Supreme
  • Steeped Tea
  • Specialty Teas
  • Hot Smoothees (all flavors)
  • Gingerbread Hot Chocolate
  • Candy Cane Hot Chocolate
  • Caramel Hot Chocolate
  • Hashbrown
  • French onion soup (broth only)
  • Hearty potato bacon soup
  • Turkey and wild rice soup
  • Chili
  • Creamy Sundried Tomato with Roasted Garlic
  • Yogurt & berries

As always, ask questions before ordering.  Iced beverages and smoothies may be made with the same blender as versions that contain gluten, so ask for a new one.  Ask about the hashbrown preparation to see if they are cooked with gluten-containing foods.  Some locations may have different procedures in place, so it is necessary to do your due diligence.  I was pleased to learn the yogurt & berries was on this list, as  I had asked about it yesterday and since nobody had a definite answer at the time.   I ended up settling on an XL coffee and a bar from my emergency stash.  Tim Horton’s has locations across the US and Canada.

Have you eaten at Tim Horton’s gluten-free?  What did you have?

Article Written by:

Kimberly Bouldin is a gluten-free wife, runner & blogger with two children in Columbus, Ohio. After her celiac diagnosis in 2006, she has made it her mission to embrace an entirely new approach to nutrition in a gluten-free world, exploring options that run the gamut from "made from scratch" homemade bread to sampling and reviewing the gluten-free prepared foods that are continuously being introduced to the market. While navigating the waters of becoming gluten-free, Kim shares her experiences and passes along valuable product reviews in addition to helping other moms of celiac kids develop healthy menus that are kid-friendly and palatable. Kimberly is a valuable resource for those who are newly diagnosed, as well as for the more seasoned gluten-free veterans. Follow Kim on Twitter!

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Comments

  1. Anne Steib says:

    We don’t have Tim Horton’s here, but when I did have the opportunity to go to one (before being gluten-free) I remember really liking the hot chocolate. I am glad to see that is one of the gluten-free friendly items. thanks!

  2. Ashley says:

    As per my knowledge, in Canada ice caps and hot chocolate MAY contain wheat at Canadian Tim Hortons.

    • Ashley,

      The allergen chart was updated in February 2012 and has notes for both the US and Canada. Is it the way they make them in the store?

      http://www.timhortons.com/us/pdf/TimHortonsAllergyChart.pdf

      Kim

      • Joel says:

        In the US, the GF limit for labeling packages as being GF is 20 ppm (parts per million),, whereas in Canada it is 5 ppm. So, some products in the US can be labeled as GF but the same item cannot be marked GF in Canada.
        The limit as set for gluten-free testing makes it hard for items contaminated with gluten from the processing operations, to slip through and be labeled as GF.
        Thank you for posting your great bread recipe!

  3. Jamesina says:

    I wouldn’t trust the yogurt as it is made by Dannon, and on their website only plain yogurts are safe, but there is no guarantee…….

  4. Melissa says:

    There have been reports that most flavoured coffees usually contain traces of gluten. As for TIm Hortons, I can confirm this fact as true. I drink a medium to x-large size French Vanilla Coffee (I guess it’s considered cappuccino on the list?) and was having reactions which I thought was to food. But after a violent episode of hives (as well as gastrointestinal, I get body-wide itching and hives from gluten once my body has processed it. It is usually delayed by a few hours) I looked at my diet and found there was NO WAY my food contained gluten as everything I had eaten was gluten-free. Then it hit me. The coffee. It was the only thing I had consumed that I couldn’t guarantee was gluten-free. It also explain a few other episodes I had that I didn’t know where it was coming from (realized those days I had also have a FV coffee). Upon research, voila, it’s true. Most flavoured coffees contain gluten. And although Timmies will not admit to it on their list, from weeks of experience I can conclude that there is traces of gluten in FV coffees!

    • Joel says:

      Gluten may not be an ingredient, but with all cappuccinos being made with the same machine, this allows cross-contamination of gluten, into everything that shares that same equipment. If someone is not gluten tolerant, this will be a problem.
      The TH website states:
      None of our products are “gluten-free”. Wheat is present in our manufacturing facilities and in all our food preparation areas.

  5. Heather says:

    I have had reactions to their non-flavored coffee as well – just regular black coffee. So I no longer go to Timmy’s at all.

    • Patricia says:

      Coffee has no glutten,you might be sensitive to caffeine..anything that is related to gerds disease you may be reacting to as well!! Look up gerds and see the list of what not to have!!!! I have celiac disease.. I have coffee all the time and I’m fine!! But there are some things that are related to gerds disease that don’t have glutten that I’m still sensitive to!!!! Doesn’t mean you have gerds, just means your body’s sensitive to some of those things!!!!

      • Evey Styles says:

        I have a reaction to their coffee too, but not other coffee. Makes me wonder what they put in it. Their “sugar” is just syrup, you know…and their “cream” is a milk solids mix.

  6. Patricia says:

    I have celiac.. I’m pretty sure hashbrowns in general have glutten!! If you have the disease be extremely careful with the soups as well..it may have even the slightest bit of glutten!! It’s not just wheat you have to stay away from, it’s barley and rye as well!! I had Tim Hortons chilli the other day and I was fine so highly unlikely that has glutten!!!! Just be very careful, google it!!!! Other then that, everything else on this list should be fine!!!!

    Thanks for uploading..still very helpful!!

    • Evey Styles says:

      Hash browns in general don’t have gluten in them and shouldn’t ever (McDonald’s are 100% gluten-free). I’m guessing that, since I ate 2 of TH’s hash browns this morning and I’m feeling pretty icky, they do have a sort of breading on them…or I got cross-contamination since they stick them in the same toaster they use for all their breads. However, since I can’t find a complete ingredient list ANYWHERE ONLINE I can’t be certain what it was.

      But I’m pretty sure about 98% of this list is NOT safe for celiacs. For instance, the Caramel Apple Cider Supreme might LOOK GF, but caramel flavouring itself is generally made from barley.

      • Jenn says:

        McDonalds Hasbrowns are NOT Gluten Free !!!!
        HASH BROWNS:

        Ingredients: Potatoes, Vegetable Oil (Canola Oil, Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Natural Beef Flavor [Wheat and Milk Derivatives]*, Citric Acid [Preservative]), Salt, Corn

        Flour, Dehydrated Potato, Dextrose, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate (Maintain Color), Extractives of Black Pepper.

        CONTAINS: WHEAT AND MILK.

        *Natural beef flavor contains hydrolyzed wheat and hydrolyzed milk as starting ingredients.

        • Evey Styles says:

          Thank you for pointing that out, but the ones in Canada are (although they are still filled with crap):

          http://www1.mcdonalds.ca/NutritionCalculator/IngredientFactsEN.pdf

          I’m not sure about the USA, but as with their fries, McDonald’s removed the “beef flavouring” long ago due to complaints from vegans and religious groups that do not condone beef eating.This is the only restaurant I personally know of that makes a point of frying their hashbrowns and fries in a vat that is completely separate from their breaded, meaty items so as not to piss off the vegans. I personally know that because I used to work there.

          If you go to that website they have for answering questions, they recommend both the hashbrowns and french fries for a gluten-free diet (and that’s ALL they recommend!).

          • Jenn says:

            What I had posted earlier was the updated nutritional list for USA McDonalds – They still have the beef flavoring and note that only their Yogurt Parfait is recommended for the Gluten Free Diet minus the granola – I just avoid all together

  7. Evey Styles says:

    Hash browns in general don’t have gluten in them and shouldn’t ever (McDonald’s are 100% gluten-free). I’m guessing that, since I ate 2 of TH’s hash browns this morning and I’m feeling pretty icky, they do have a sort of breading on them…or I got cross-contamination since they stick them in the same toaster they use for all their breads. However, since I can’t find a complete ingredient list ANYWHERE ONLINE I can’t be certain what it was.

    Besides most of the beverages, I’m pretty sure about 98% of this list is NOT safe for celiacs. For instance, the Caramel Apple Cider Supreme might LOOK GF, but caramel flavouring itself is generally made from barley.

    • Jenn says:

      McDonalds Hasbrowns are NOT Gluten Free !!!!
      HASH BROWNS:

      Ingredients: Potatoes, Vegetable Oil (Canola Oil, Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Natural Beef Flavor [Wheat and Milk Derivatives]*, Citric Acid [Preservative]), Salt, Corn

      Flour, Dehydrated Potato, Dextrose, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate (Maintain Color), Extractives of Black Pepper.

      CONTAINS: WHEAT AND MILK.

      *Natural beef flavor contains hydrolyzed wheat and hydrolyzed milk as starting ingredients.

      • Evey Styles says:

        Thank you for pointing that out, but the ones in Canada are (although they are still filled with crap):

        http://www1.mcdonalds.ca/NutritionCalculator/IngredientFactsEN.pdf

        I’m not sure about the USA, but as with their fries, McDonald’s removed the “beef flavouring” long ago due to complaints from vegans and religious groups that do not condone beef eating.This is the only restaurant I personally know of that makes a point of frying their hashbrowns and fries in a vat that is completely separate from their breaded, meaty items so as not to piss off the vegans. I personally know that because I used to work there.

        If you go to that website they have for answering questions, they recommend both the hashbrowns and french fries for a gluten-free diet (and that’s ALL they recommend!).

        • Jenn says:

          What I had posted earlier was the updated nutritional list for USA McDonalds – They still have the beef flavoring and note that only their Yogurt Parfait is recommended for the Gluten Free Diet minus the granola – I just avoid all together

  8. Evey Styles says:

    I have a reaction to their coffee too, but not other coffee. Makes me wonder what they put in it. Their “sugar” is just syrup, you know…and their “cream” is a milk solids mix.

  9. catpea33 says:

    If I have anything with gluten in it, I get a lovely rash on my neck within 30 minutes that itches like crazy. I had a Tim Hortons Hot Chocolate today (the store-bought kind) and within 30 minutes, my neck was going nuts. Everything I’ve eaten today, I’ve made myself, except for the powder that I used for the hot chocolate. I don’t understand how their website can say ‘These products are gluten-free’ and then just above that say that there may be cross-contamination from the factory. If they’re not sure then they shouldn’t be saying gluten-free; this isn’t a guessing game!

  10. catpea33 says:

    If I have anything with gluten in it, I get a lovely rash on my neck within 30 minutes that itches like crazy. I had a Tim Hortons Hot Chocolate today (the store-bought kind) and within 30 minutes, my neck was going nuts. Everything I’ve eaten today, I’ve made myself, except for the powder that I used for the hot chocolate. I don’t understand how their website can say ‘These products are gluten-free’ and then just above that say that there may be cross-contamination from the factory. If they’re not sure then they shouldn’t be saying gluten-free; this isn’t a guessing game!

  11. Judy Anderson says:

    Since this allergen list is based on US standards…I’m guessing that the French Vanilla cappuccino does have a small amount of gluten…Canada only allows 20 ppm and I have Celiac’s and have had a reaction from drinking one and have had employees tell me it is not gluten-free.

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  1. Weekly Menu Plan–January 9, 2012 « Gluten-free is Life says:

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