The Girl Scouts Go Gluten Free

You recognize them by their green sashes and big smiles. Every year, the Girl Scouts of America sell their delicious cookies across the country, and very few can resist the temptation of those alluring boxes. Unfortunately, those with celiac disease were unable to indulge in this American favorite, as the cookies contained gluten. That is, until now.

Gluten-free America
According to the National Foundation of Celiac Awareness, approximately one in 133 Americans has the disease. There are no cures or treatments for celiac disease, which causes damage to the lining of the small intestine and prevents the absorption of nutrients, so those with the disease must avoid gluten altogether. Even more Americans are choosing a gluten-free lifestyle because they are allergic to it or feel their health would benefit from abstaining. Either way, gluten-free diners must avoid obvious foods, such as beer and bread, as well as many other products that contain gluten.

Serving the minority
The growing popularity of a gluten-free lifestyle has prompted many restaurants, bakeries and food production companies to offer options for those diners who wish to avoid the product. In fact, you’ve probably learned gluten-free recipes and/or baking secrets from your online cooking school or discovered. Now the Girl Scouts are jumping on the bandwagon to offer the same choice.

The gluten-free cookie
A gluten-free chocolate chip shortbread cookie will be offered in certain test regions in 2014. Made with rice and tapioca flour, the cookie seems like a great option for those with celiac disease. It does not contain artificial flavors or colors, high-fructose corn syrup or hydrogenated oils. Furthermore, the cookie is made with real butter and chocolate. It is manufactured in a facility that processes nuts and tree nuts. The cookie is made by ABC Bakers, a company that creates some of the other cookies on the Girl Scout product list.

Where to get it
The cookie will only be available in certain test markets in 2014 to ensure the product is viable, however, there seem to be plenty of locations. You can see the complete list of regions, along with more detailed information on that distribution area, by visiting the organization’s website. If your region will not carry the cookie, you can call a nearby location and order through them. The Girl Scouts have also manufactured the Girl Scout Cookie Finder app, which helps you track down your favorite cookies. The app is available for both iPhone and Android devices.

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