Gluten Schmuten: Envirokidz Peanut Butter Panda Puffs

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.

If she had her druthers, The Kid would snack all days from a bowl of cereal. It bothers me that my daughter has the dietary habits of a hamster, but she’s three and I’ll cut her a little slack.

We’ve made a successful transition from frosted mini wheats and Cheerios to Chex and more Chex. Kix, however, is a tougher replacement. It is gluten-free per its ingredients, but not labeled as such (General Mills has done well in marking which cereals are and are not GF). My best guess is that Kix is made in a plant where cross contamination with wheat is likely. We’ve tiptoed, allowing The Kid to eat Kix here and there, waiting for the return of the yellow poop. Thus far, no disaster. Still, we need a replacement that is clearly gluten free.

Nature’s Path makes a few different gluten-free options, including entries under its Envirokidz line. There is a Kix-like corn puff, which is unopened and in our cabinet. We decided to give the Peanut Butter Panda Puffs* a shot.

THE ASTERISK: Peanut Butter Panda Puffs are, in fact, not made from pandas.

THE SELL: Gluten free cornmeal puffs with the peanut butter flavor.

THE PACKAGE: Each box is 10.6 oz.

THE INGREDIENTS: Corn meal, evaporated cane juice, peanut butter, soy oil, sea salt, tocopherols (natural vitamin E), tapioca starch.

THE STATS ON A SERVING: One 3/4 cup serving has 130 calories, 2.5g fat, 24g carbs, 2g fiber, and 7g sugar. 

THE COST: $3.99 at Syracuse Wegmans stores.

THE REPLACEMENT: Kix comes in at $3.29 for a 12 oz. box

THE ADULT TASTE TEST: The Wife likes them. They have a mild gritty texture, but a good corn and peanut butter flavor. I think they would be good when mixed in with Chex chocolate or in some chocolate milk.

THE KID TEST: Thumbs down. Did not like them at all. Jammed a handful in her mouth, then removed them one puff at a time.

THE VERDICT: Thumbs down from her. The Wife said it’s earned four villi, but since this is about The Kid:


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