Starbucks Removing Gluten From Frappucino Lights
My wonderful neighborhood Starbucks manager keeps me informed of the gluten comings and goings at Starbucks. A recent corporate email has informed stores that the gluten containing Frappuccino Light Base, introduced in May of 2010, will no longer be made with gluten. This dairy base is used in the prep of Starbucks Frappuccino Lights only. The regular Frappuccino base has not ever contained gluten.
The gluten free light base will be phased in to stores as the old inventory is used up, so CHECK with your location before ordering. The old bottle says “Contains: Gluten” in bold under the ingredients panel on the bottle and the new ones don’t. Ask to see it yourself if you want to confirm it before you order. They showed me the old bottle back when it was introduced, and I saw the new bottle, which is already being used in my local store, today. You’re looking for an allergen statement following the ingredients that says, “Contains: Gluten,” or that doesn’t say that.
Starbucks maintains their “official” position that they can’t guarantee gluten free status for any of their drinks since they serve gluten-containing foods, but the option to purchase is of course, up to you. “If you have an allergen concern, please feel free to ask our baristas to check the ingredient labels or click on our Customer Service page. We cannot guarantee that any of our beverages are allergen free because we use shared equipment and handle allergens throughout the store.”
The chocolate chips used in the Java Chip Frappuccino and the Double Chocolate Chip Frappuccino still contain wheat, so avoid those, and ask for a clean pitcher to be used if you choose to order a Frappuccino at Starbucks and are worried about cross contamination. The other syrups, including mocha, don’t contain gluten.