We believe our cereal should be enjoyed by all. That’s why we made Rice Chex™, Cheerios™, and Lucky Charms™ gluten free by simply removing stray wheat, rye, and barley grains from our oat supply.
How We Did It
Learn more about how we made Cheerios™ and Lucky Charms™ gluten free.
Cheerios™: Same Cheerios™, Simply Gluten Free
We know that lots of different families want to enjoy Cheerios™ together. That’s why we worked hard to remove stray wheat, rye, and barley grains from our oat supply. Cheerios™ still have the same great taste but are gluten free.
From the field to the bowl, the journey our oats take to become Cheerios™ is long, and we make sure they’re gluten free every step of the way.
Cheerios™ have always been made of oats, which are naturally gluten free. First the oats are harvested. Many farmers who grow oats rotate their crops; which means they also grow grains that have gluten (like wheat, barley, and rye). These grains get mixed in with the oats during harvesting and transport. To make Cheerios™ gluten free, we separate them from the oats. All the oats are sifted. Our sifter sorts out the grains of barley, wheat, and rye, which are different shapes than oats. Every batch of oats is tested to make sure it has less than 20 parts per million of other grains; that means, on average, for every 15,000 grains of oats, there can be no more than one grain of wheat, barley, or rye.
Then, the oats are milled into flour. The oats go to a mill that’s dedicated to making gluten-free flour. Once the oats are milled, the flour is checked to make sure it’s still gluten free. The oat flour gets shipped to the plant. The flour travels in our dedicated gluten-free trucks and rail cars on its way to becoming Cheerios™. And then it’s made into Cheerios™. Using the same recipe as always, we puff and toast the oat flour into Cheerios™. The finished Cheerios™ are checked once more to ensure they’re gluten free.
Lucky Charms™: Magically Delicious and Gluten Free Too!
This is how Original Lucky Charms™ became gluten free.
Oats are naturally gluten free and so are Lucky Charms™ marshmallows—so we didn’t change a thing!
The recipe for Original Lucky Charms™ stayed the same; which means the texture and the delicious taste stayed the same, too. In fact, we can’t taste a difference—except for the sifting.
Our sifter takes out grains of barley, wheat, and rye, which can have gluten. A few of these extra grains can get mixed in during harvesting and transport from the farm. Now we sift them out!
How gluten free is gluten free? We test every batch of oats after sifting to make sure it has less than 20 parts per million of gluten.
We check it multiple times. First, we check the oats after sifting; but we check again after the oats are milled into flour. We even ship the flour to our plants in our fleet of dedicated gluten-free trucks and rail cars. After the flour is baked into Original Lucky Charms™ cereal, we check one last time to ensure they’re gluten free.
(Chocolate Lucky Charms™ are not gluten-free.)