Create A Gluten-Free Easter Basket!

gluten-free easter basket
Create this gluten-free Easter basket. Copyright © D. Cassell, 2016

It's a given that none of the pre-packaged Easter baskets on store shelves are going to be completely (or even mostly) gluten-free. But that shouldn't deter you from presenting the gluten-free child in your life with a perfectly safe (and beautiful!) Easter basket this year.

It's actually really easy to create a gluten-free Easter basket from store-bought gluten-free Easter candy and a few other inexpensive materials.

My daughter and I built the gluten-free Easter basket pictured above for about $20, with plenty of candy left over to go in school lunches and to use for snacks. Everything in it is Easter-themed, and it's all gluten-free.

Here's what you need to build your own gluten-free basket:

  • Dove milk chocolate bunny, 4.5 ounces (Dove chocolates and chocolate novelties, like this bunny, have been listed as gluten-free in the past, but be sure to always check the label — the manufacturer will disclose any gluten ingredients or risk of gluten cross-contamination)
  • Easter Egg-Shaped Tootsie Pops (Tootsie Pops, made by Tootsie Roll Industries, are reliably gluten-free — the manufacturer only makes one gluten-containing item)
  • Easter-themed milk chocolate M&Ms in fun-sized packages (be sure to purchase only the milk chocolate M&Ms, since some of the other Easter-themed merchandise may contain gluten ingredients)
  • Speck-tacular M&M Eggs (these have always been gluten-free, but be sure to double-check the label, since ingredients and manufacturing may change)
  • Jelly Belly jelly beans, assorted (Jelly Belly reports that all its jelly bean candies are gluten-free, so any flavor you like should be perfectly safe)
  • Dove milk chocolate foil-wrapped Easter eggs (again, Dove chocolates have been listed as gluten-free, but always check the label)
  • Peeps (any color, shape or flavor as long as they contain the words "gluten-free" on the ingredients label — some Peep products are not safe)
  • Basket (available at discount stores; we paid $2.50 for ours)
  • Plastic "grass" for the basket ($1.50 at the same discount store)

All these candies and confections are listed by their manufacturers as gluten-free. However, I can't emphasize enough that you should always check the label to be certain the product is gluten-free.

For holidays that emphasize candy (such as Easter), manufacturers frequently use alternative manufacturing facilities, which can introduce a risk of gluten cross-contamination. The candies above are made by manufacturers that will disclose any such risk.

For other gluten-free candy options you might want to include in your custom Easter basket, check out my master candy list:

For example, you may want to throw in some Hershey's Kisses -- just be sure to choose carefully, since buying gluten-free Hershey's Kisses can be incredibly confusing.

Enjoy your basket, and Happy Easter!

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