Get a Taste of the Vancouver Gluten Free Expo 2014

Living gluten free doesn't have to be an unappetizing chore. Learn more at Vancouver's Gluten Free Expo January 25 and 26

Credit: Flickr / elena's pantry

Suffer from celiac disease or have a gluten allergy? The Vancouver’s Gluten Free Expo is the place to be

With one in six Canadians suffering from gluten intolerance, it’s no wonder the Gluten Free Expo has grown into a national, not-to-be-missed show in the span of just over a year.

Event founder Margaret Dron created the event as was a way to raise gluten-free donations for the Food Bank, but it quickly turned into a much-needed opportunity for sufferers of celiac disease and gluten allergies to learn more about products and strategies for successful (and delicious) gluten-free living.

This year’s Vancouver show runs at the PNE Forum January 25 and 26 with 117 exhibitors, more than 300 products and five speakers to educate and entertain the more than 9,000 expected attendees. Tickets are $12 online and $15 at the door.

If you’re new to gluten-free eating, or curious about how wheat-free products actually taste, be sure to go on an empty stomach! Exhibitors will be sampling, and this is a great opportunity to discover your new favourite products in a variety of categories. Here is what you’ll want to try…


Credit: Facebook / Glutino


While there’s no doubt gluten-free bread tastes significantly different than its wheat-filled parent, the variety of gluten-free breads on the market and variation in their tastes and textures can make shopping for bread a bit puzzling if you’re new to gluten-free eating. And as Dron pointed out, “This is your chance to try them without spending $6 a loaf!”

Bread makers at the expo include some of the most popular grocery-store brands like Udi’s, Glutino and Silver Hills. Just remember to BYOB (bring your own butter).

Credit: Facebook/ Holy Crap


If you can’t fathom facing mornings without your Wheaties, Cheerios or Rice Krispies (which, despite the name, are not gluten-free), you can take heart in the numerous gluten-free breakfast cereals that have begun claiming space on grocery store shelves.

Must-try options at the show include Bakery on Main (gluten-free granola in a variety of flavours), Enjoy Life Foods (in Cinnamon Raisin, Very Berry and Double Chocolate), and Holy Crap (the most successful business ever to come out of the Dragon’s Den.)

Credit: Facebook / Sincerely Pasta


You can have your pasta and eat it too even though you’re on a gluten-free diet. Noodles made from quinoa, brown rice and corn are now available in major grocery stores.

Options at the show include Catelli’s four-grain blend of brown and white rice, quinoa and corn, gluten-free ravioli from Zara’s Pasta and Sincerely Pasta made with quinoa, amaranth, chickpea, and brown rice flour.

Credit: Facebook / Way Better Snacks

Salty Snacks

Sometimes there’s no substitute for a good cracker when the craving hits for a Ritz. These show samplers are safely made from corn, rice and potato flour: Corn Thins, CheeCha Puffs and sprouted seed crackers from Way Better Snacks.

Sweet Treats

When that box of donuts shows up at the office, don’t despair. Simply hit up your new favourite gluten-free bakery like Cloud 9 Specialty Bakery, Lemonade Gluten Free Bakery and Panne Rizo, all of which will be tempting your tastebuds at the show.

Credit: Flickr / couldntbeparve

Tips for Getting the Most out of the Expo

Follow these tips for a great day at the Gluten Free Expo

  1. Download the free mobile app available on iTunes. The app will not only give you a list of all the exhibitors and a map of the floor plan so you can find them, it also allows you to create a shortlist of your favourite products.
  2. Listen to guest speakers for information on everything from living gluten free, gum-free baking and immune-boosting grains.
  3. Don’t forget to stock up on your favourite items, indulge in free samples and bring a gluten-free donation for the food bank.