As the days get cooler and a lot of us turn toward a steaming hot cup of tea, coffee or hot chocolate, it’s always good to know your options when you’re out and about this fall and winter. Caribou Coffee — a chain of coffee shops based in Minnesota — recently got back to me with additional information on what’s gluten free in their stores.
On a particularly chilly day, I emailed Caribou wondering what we gluten-free folks could have if we stopped by their shop. Aaron in Customer Relations says,
“Currently all of our coffee and beverages are Gluten Free, unless the drink contains Cookie Crumb topping in or on it. In regarding to our foods, the Fresh Fruit Medley, Caramel pieces, and Trail Mix are the only options which are gluten free.” — Aaron, Customer Relations February, 10, 2014
The kid’s cocoa and Cookies and Cream Cooler are examples that have the cookie crumbs. Otherwise you should be fine ordering a coffee with a flavored syrup, but when you get into their fancier coffee drinks, just as a precaution, you may want to double check each individual ingredient. You can do that on the menu page.
They also have an allergen page which has a few ingredients that contain wheat (some more obvious than others), like the crushed peppermint (seasonal), oatmeal (hot cereal) blend, Oreo cookie bits, brown sugar crumble (for the oatmeal). The list of items that “may contain wheat” are: chocolate-covered espresso beans, cooler mix (regular and Northern Lite), and honey roasted almonds. While most of those are actually food options, you may just want to double check to make sure your beverage doesn’t have a topping or something like the crushed peppermint, oreos or cooler mixes which could contaminate your drink.
Caribou Coffee has shops in 16 states and several countries other than the United States.
(Editor note: This post was originally published on October 8, 2010 and updated February 10, 2014)