Are you looking for a way to use fish in your gluten-free diet? Catfish along with other plain fish and meats do not contain gluten. However, certain preparation methods and ingredients do contain gluten; therefore, it is important to establish the different ways to eat catfish for gluten sensitivity.
What is Gluten?
Gluten is a protein found in certain grains such as wheat, barley and rye that individuals with Celiac Disease have a hard time tolerating. According to the Celiac Disease Foundation, celiac disease is an autoimmune disease that causes damage to the small intestine after the consumption of gluten. Some individuals suffer from gluten sensitivity and intolerance for other reasons, which may lead them to choose a gluten-free lifestyle. Bread, baked goods, pizza, pasta, crackers, breaded foods, battered or deep-fried foods, oats and cereals all contain gluten unless otherwise stated. Celiac disease or any other gluten sensitivity can create a limiting and restrictive diet that makes it difficult to find meals that are safe to eat, especially at restaurants or in social settings. It can also be very tedious to comb through lists of ingredients looking for specific indicators of gluten. So, here’s the tricky question: how can we make catfish, so it remains gluten-free?
Do’s and Don’ts for Gluten-Free Catfish
Catfish is gluten-free on its own. However, it is important to keep in mind certain ingredients commonly found in catfish dishes contain wheat flour or wheat-based starches which would add gluten to the dish. Fried catfish, one of the most popular catfish recipes, contains gluten. But that doesn’t have to hinder you from eating fried catfish if you are gluten-free. There are a variety of substitutes that can offer the same classic taste and flavor of fried catfish. Cornmeal, for example, is a great alternative to flour when frying.
In this day and age, there are plenty of popular substitutes that make it possible to have all your favorite catfish dishes. The good news is, there are many grilled and blackened catfish recipe variations available that are delicious and gluten-free. Baking and frying catfish is where the line tends to get blurry, and substitutions may need to be made.
Usually, the batter the fish are dipped in before they are fried contains gluten. The same is also true if there is a batter or breading involved in baking fish. Even if the fish itself and the preparation methods are gluten-free, the key is to identify add-ins and add-ons that might sneak in gluten. Dipping sauces and especially side dishes are good examples of add-ins and add-ons.
Although there are limitations to a gluten-free diet, it is still possible to find tasty and flavorful meals, especially through catfish. Ready to start cooking a delicious gluten-free dish? Heartland Catfish 2022 cooking competition winner Lisa Bynum prepared Mediterranean catfish fillets, a delicious, gluten-free meal. Check out the recipe for all cooking instructions and specifics.