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Nicole Osinga, Dietician

Nicole Osinga

Registered Dietitian

Italian company Barilla’s gluten-free pasta is made of high-quality ingredients and offers many health benefits for people suffering from digestive concerns.

Gluten is a hot topic these days, and Canadians are increasingly seeking out gluten-free products to keep themselves and their families healthy. For people with digestive issues, going gluten-free can be the key to symptom-free living.  

Gluten-free foods — not just for Celiac sufferers

“People with Celiac disease need to eliminate all gluten-containing products from their diet, but we’re seeing that a gluten-free diet and gluten-free products can actually help people who have various digestive concerns as well, including people who have irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or even Crohn’s or colitis, which are forms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD),” says Nicole Osinga, a Durham Region-based registered dietitian.

So while eating gluten-free is essential for people with Celiac disease — a chronic digestive disorder resulting from an immune reaction to gliadin, a gluten protein found in wheat, barley, rye, millet, and sometimes oats — Osinga has noticed that many of her clients who suffer from other digestive disorders also benefit from going gluten-free.

Gluten-free products contribute to digestive wellness, which is a foundational aspect of overall health. And going gluten-free is surprisingly easy.

Box of Barilla Gluten-Free Spaghetti

Easy swaps to make eating gluten-free effortless

“A big misconception is that eating gluten-free is really hard and expensive,” says Osinga. It doesn’t have to be that way. With products like Barilla’s gluten-free pasta on the market, you can go gluten-free without giving up your favourite foods.

Barilla’s gluten-free pasta, available at its Amazon store, is a favourite amongst those who want the taste and texture of real pasta — no sticking together or clumping — without the gluten.

“Barilla’s is probably the best gluten-free pasta I’ve ever had,” says Osinga. “It tastes so similar to standard wheat pasta. My partner didn’t even notice the difference. Two thumbs up!”

Barilla’s gluten-free pasta is made from high-quality ingredients, which allow the pasta to cook perfectly al dente every time. The ingredients are also non-GMO and the gluten-free pastas are produced on a dedicated gluten-free line, giving you peace of mind.

FODMAP — Healing digestive concerns with simple steps

Along with eating gluten-free, eating a low-FODMAP diet can help those with IBS, IBD, or sensitive stomachs. FODMAPs (fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols) are carbohydrates that tend to trigger digestive symptoms.

Osinga recommends 10 key ingredients to include in a low-FODMAP diet, starting with Barilla’s gluten-free pasta. Other foods to include are oats, garlic-infused extra virgin olive oil (to add flavour without garlic itself, which is a high-FODMAP food), diced tomatoes, edamame, berries, seeds (such as pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, and chia seeds), spinach or kale, maple syrup, and dried herbs (such as basil, oregano, and paprika). These ingredients guarantee a flavourful and healthy diet while eliminating foods that may cause digestive distress.

Recipe: Eggplant & Zucchini Gluten-Free Pasta

Eggplant and Zucchini Pasta with Barilla Gluten-Free Spaghetti

Servings: 4
Time: 30 minutes
Difficulty: Easy


  • 1 box of Barilla Gluten-Free Spaghetti
  • 1/4 cup garlic-infused olive oil
  • 1 eggplant, diced
  • 2 zucchini, diced
  • 1/4 cup green onions, chopped
  • 24 oz diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp dried basil


Cook your pasta according to package directions, until perfectly al dente.

Heat 1.5 tbsp of garlic-infused olive oil in a saucepan, over medium heat. Add about half of the eggplant and sauté until softened, browned and cooked through. Remove and place in a bowl. Repeat with another 1.5 tbsp of the oil and the rest of the eggplant, adding to bowl when done.

Add the last tbsp of oil to the saucepan and sauté the zucchini and green onions until the zucchini is crisp and tender. Add the eggplant back to the skillet along with the tomatoes and basil. Cover and simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Divide pasta into four servings. Add sauce on top. Enjoy!

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