I think by now we've all seen the Tesco gluten free Christmas advert (see bottom of post) with the 'gluten free Latimers' coming for tea. Whether or not you're slightly irritated by or over the moon with the mainstream advert highlighting free from products, you've got to hand it to Tesco for the effort they've put in this Christmas.
Yes, Tesco has very generously sent me a huge Christmas hamper (a lot of which I'm giving away in a competition on my Facebook page, have you seen it?) but this doesn't sway the fact that it seems to have the biggest Free From Christmas range out of all the supermarkets I have seen this year.
So what does the range entail? Here's a, by no means inclusive, list and some thoughts on Tesco's range...
Free from Christmas products
In terms of festive-specific stuff, Tesco has a pretty standard range. I want sent some Christmas cake slices, a Christmas pudding and a giant, beautifully iced Christmas fruit cake. This thing is super heavy and would make a fab present or showpiece at a party. The mince pies are nice but I prefer Waitrose's ones - see review here.
Perfect gluten free party food
There are plenty of treats on Tesco's shelves which would be perfect for parties or as yummy snacks to have around the house when family and friends are visiting. These include:
Tesco Finest gluten free Cookies - I love this range and especially how it is packaged in non-Free From attire. I was sent a dark chocolate and ginger variety and a triple chocolate cookie. Very tasty!
- Tesco Finest gluten free bites - I have been a fan of these for quite some time! The millionaire's shortbread ones and rocky roads are my favourite, but the brownie bites are also amazing! Perfect to pick up at a party or for a taste of something sweet
- Free From breadsticks - another party staple! If you were serving these with dips you would need to be careful of cross-contamination (no double dipping with the wheat-eaters!) but it's great to have the option and not feel left out.
- Finest gluten free carrot cake - Tesco seem to have a range of gluten free cakes now, which are great when it's your turn to bring the cakes to work on your birthday, or if you have a gluten free relative and you're not the best baker. This cake was a lot smaller looking that the box looked, but it tasted pretty damn good.
- St Peters gluten free beer - I was sent two bottles of this which I am yet to sample! As I've never drunk beer (I was diagnosed coeliac when I was 12) I can't get my head around the taste. I will have to seek a willing beer drinker and get their opinion - has anyone else tried this brand? Let me know what you think!
Tesco frozen free from foods
Tesco seems to have the biggest range of frozen Free From foods I have seen, and it's pleasing to see they are constantly adding to their choice. So far in their range I have found...
- Gluten free profiteroles - I am SO excited to try these! I went to buy some and they were out of stock, so I'm going to check back again during the week and see if I can hunt them down.
- Gluten free cheesy dough balls - I often long for dough balls in Pizza Express and this may be the closest I come! These looked a little bit more like macaroons than dough balls, but they tasted GOOD! Cheesy and a bit chewy, they would be great with some garlic mayo or dip at a party - or for binge watching Netflix with....
- Gluten free chicken nuggets
- Gluten free burgers
- Gluten free onion rings - all of which would be great for a party and some savoury nibbles!
Gluten free stuffing and sausages
The thing I found by far the most impressive is the amount of fresh stuffing and sausages which are gluten free - and that's pretty much all of it! Just take a look at the choice here...
I was really quite impressed with this and I'll certainly be buying some to pop in the freezer ready for Christmas Day. The last two years I have had Tesco's pigs in blankets so I am looking forward to trying some more products. On offer was...
- Pork cocktail sausages (pack of 10)
- Pork chipolatas (pack of 18)
- Roasted chestnut and onion pork stuffing
- Sage and onion pork stuffing balls (pack of 12)
- Bramley apple, blossom honey and sage pork stuffing
- Caramelised red onion pork cocktail sausages (pack of 18)
- Leek, pancetta and thyme pork stuffing parcels (pack of 6)
- Spiced fruit and brandy pork stuffing portions (pack of 6)
Last time I checked they were all £3 or two for £5, so I would stock up now! It's great to see such an extensive range - thank you Tesco!
As well as providing all this fantastic Free From food, the Tesco Free From team will be taking over the @Tesco Twitter channel tomorrow (Monday, Dec 14) with their #GlutenFreeHelps campaign. It comes after the supermarket giant ran a survey which found:
- 49% of Brits said they had never cooked for someone with a special dietary requirement
- Two-thirds said that if they had a gluten intolerant Christmas dinner guest, they wouldn't know what they couldn't eat
- Nearly half of those with a gluten intolerance said that they felt embarrassed about it when being hosted at Christmas
The Free From team will be responding to queries about cooking gluten free this Christmas, offering hints, tips and product suggestions from Tesco’s Free-From selection and beyond. All you will need to do is tweet your query @Tesco using the tag #GlutenFreeHelps. I'll be checking them out to see what they say - perhaps we could all learn something!