Gluten-Free Candy Canes

Christmas wouldn't be the same without candy canes—those red-and-white mint treats look festive on the tree and taste great, too. But if you're following a gluten-free diet, you can't take anything for granted, including candy canes.

But several different types of candy cane—both traditional and non-traditional—are gluten-free and therefore safe for people with celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity to eating. The following is a rundown on which brands are considered gluten-free by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration standard of fewer than 20 parts per million of gluten.

Unfortunately, there are no certified gluten-free candy cane products available (which would mean they would be tested to contain less than 10 parts per million of gluten, a more stringent standard). However, some of these are processed in dedicated gluten-free facilities.


Bobs Candy Canes

Bobs Original Candy Canes

Farley's & Sathers

For traditional, red-and-white-striped, peppermint-flavored Christmas candy canes, it's hard to beat Bobs, part of Farley's & Sather's candy company. Bobs make several different options, ranging from 12-packs of full-sized candy canes to huge tubs of mini candy canes. The company's red, white and green candies are billed as "the original candy cane."

According to a company spokesperson, all Bobs candy canes are considered gluten-free to 20 parts per million, without a possibility of cross-contamination from other gluten-containing products. Most are made in the same facility, and that facility does not process gluten-containing products.


Jelly Belly Candy Canes

Jelly Belly candy canes

Jelly Belly

Jelly Belly, best-known for its gourmet (and reliably gluten-free) jelly beans, offers gluten-free candy canes in six different flavors: Very Cherry, Green Apple, Orange, Tutti Frutti, Blueberry, and Watermelon. Although they're not your traditional mint candy cane, these colorful candies make a nice addition to your holiday assortment.

If you're looking for the taste of candy canes but don't care about the shape, you consider a package of Jelly Belly jelly beans in candy cane flavor—they're available all year, not just during the holidays. Jelly Belly candies are considered gluten-free to less than 20 parts per million, vegetarian-friendly, and Kosher.


Starburst Candy Canes

Starburst candy canes


Starburst fruit chews are an established favorite. The products are made by Wrigley and they also make gluten-free candies. Starburst candy canes, which come in a box of 12 (six strawberry and six green apple), also are gluten-free to levels of less than 20 parts per million.

According to a spokesperson for Wrigley, Starburst and Starburst candy canes sold in the U.S. are free of any gluten sources, and are not produced on equipment that also processes gluten-containing items.


Lifesavers Candy Canes

Lifesavers Candy Canes


Lifesavers also is a Wrigley product, and at holiday time the company makes colorful candy cane versions in cherry, watermelon, orange, pineapple, and raspberry flavors.

Like Wrigley's Starburst candy canes, Lifesavers candy canes are free of all gluten ingredients (considered gluten-free to levels of less than 20 parts per million) and are not manufactured on shared equipment.


Hershey's Kisses Candy Cane

Hershey's candy cane with Kisses


If you don't want authentic candy canes, but want something festive for the holidays, maybe you want a giant plastic candy cane packed with Hershey's Kisses. Plain chocolate kisses are on Hershey's gluten-free list, and the holiday-wrapped kisses in green and red foil are gluten-free. Hershey's Kisses filled with caramel also made the gluten-free list.

Avoid candy-cane-flavored Hershey's Kisses (in silver foil decorated with red candy canes), since they are not considered gluten-free by the company.

3 Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Gluten and food labeling.

  2. Gluten-Free Certification Organization. About us.

  3. Hershey's. HERSHEY'S Chocolate Mint Candy Canes, 0.44 oz, 12 count box.

Additional Reading

By Jane Anderson
Jane Anderson is a medical journalist and an expert in celiac disease, gluten sensitivity, and the gluten-free diet.