The Downside of Going Gluten Free: Everything Tastes Gross

A local comedian’s take on gluten-free diets

Did you catch the NewsWorks piece from earlier this week written by Philly comedian and begrudging celiac sufferer Valerie DiMambro about what it’s really like to eat gluten free? Nutshell: she’s, er, not so much a fan.

To wit:

I don’t need everyone’s constant reminders that everything I eat tastes fantastically disgusting. I know this. I’m eating it. All. The. Time.

What did I do in a past life to be punished with fake cake? People wonder why I don’t smoke weed. What would I eat when I get the munchies? Carrots? Apples? Lame!

Free from gluten? More like free from flavor. More like free from joy.

Her essay is funny and maybe a tad sad. Read it here.

I want to hear from you gluten-free eaters: Does everyone go through a GF learning curve, during which time you eat a lot of gross things until you find the good stuff? Does it get better? Tell us in the comments.

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  • Jenn

    Most store-bought “gluten-free” food (pasta, crackers, cake) *is* gross and it’s full of stuff humans shouldn’t consume anyway. Eat real unprocessed food (protein, fruits, nuts, veggies) and before you know it, real bread and pasta doesn’t taste so good… especially if eating it makes you feel sick. Try baking at home with recipes using almond flour or coconut flour if you crave “baked” goods.

  • nicole

    I signed up for the gluten free meal plan on and it has really helped me so much with the transition to this diet. Now I can eat delicious food again sans the stomach fits!!! :) yeah, it takes time to find what’s really good and what sucks lol

  • ktb

    The detox off gluten, for me, was truly a horrible experience. Headaches, body aches, nausea. Now I feel amazing, no longer experience the awful stomach problems and my sinuses have cleared up completely. Initially I think that transitioning with gluten free products is a great way to not feel deprived, but overall, I now steer clear of those products and eat a much cleaner diet. If you need your bread fix, go to Taffets in the Italian Market. The bread is actually better than the wheat versions.

  • afg5

    I agree with above commenters – REAL food tastes so much better anyway! If you try to do gluten-free by substituting in ingredients, things will taste different (and crappy). I find this article annoying, even if it’s trying to be funny, because it just confirms a common misconception about going gluten-free. Even if it is sad once in a while to have to pass up a slice of pizza or a beer, isn’t it worth it when you feel so much better?

  • nicole

    When I get to missing pizza, I just remember how crappy I’m going to feel the next 5 days if I eat it. Its sooooo not worth it to me lol honestly, I’m eating such a healthier diet with more veggies since I’ve gone gluten free.

  • Carrie

    Basic Batters is a dedicated gluten and dairy free bakery in West Chester, PA. Our products are full of flavor and texture you would not believe it is gluten free. We use all natural and organic ingredients and no GMO’s! We can help you be happy about being gluten free. Check us out on Facebook!

  • nicole

    I LOVE Better Batter’s chocolate cake mix! It’s AMAZING!!!!!

  • nicole

    Carrie, I wish we had a bakery like yours here in Birmingham, AL!!!

  • Elizabeth

    I am from a family that revolves around food. Planning the next meal while still eating. I discovered the best cookbook with a truly amazing flour blend, it even works in my Grandma’s traditional recipes. It is Artisinal Gluten Free cooking by Kelli and Peter Bronski. I even make the cupcakes and desserts for my non gluten free family and they all love them. It has helped me tremendously. Their pizza crust recipe was also a hit