In late February, United Airlines announced they were expanding their in-flight food. They were switching from regular to gluten-free salad dressing on the premium-cabin menu on flights departing the United States to points throughout North and Central America. Additionally, United is making their Savory snackbox completely gluten-free. They are adding the Two Degrees Fruit & Nut Bars to their Snack Shop à la carte menu as a gluten-free option. All of these announcements made us gluten-free travelers very happy and the news quickly spread through the Celiac traveler community.
According to United, “Snack Shop selections are available for purchase in United Economy on most North and Central America flights scheduled for more than two hours and flights to and from northern South America. The fruit and nut bars are also available on the airline’s Choice Menu Bistro on Board, on flights departing after 5:45 a.m. and before 9:45 a.m. Bistro on Board offers fresh food for sale in United Economy on most flights scheduled for more than three-and-a-half hours within North America and to Central and northern South America.”
Finding safe gluten-free food to eat for sale on a flight is often a daunting task. Any Celiac traveler knows that more than half of your carry-on bag is usually filled with gluten-free food. The expansion of the gluten-free options on board United flights is a big perk for the gluten-free travelers of the world!
I connected with United Airlines via Twitter and was asked to be one of the first people to try their new gluten-free snack box items and provide feedback. I was thrilled at the opportunity to share my Gluten-Free Globetrotter experience and knowledge while checking out the new gluten-free snackbox options.
Here’s what I received in my sample box:
I thought this was a decent gluten-free selection that thankfully wasn’t limited to the usual airline chips and peanuts. Many of these options were from familiar gluten-free brands that I am already comfortable eating. I think picking known gluten-free brands and especially foods that are certified gluten-free was a wise choice by United Airlines. This adds a level of comfort and familiarity for the gluten-free traveler. I was most excited about the Wild Garden shelf-stable hummus dip, the WOW Baking Company chocolate chip cookie, and the Two Degrees Fruit and Nut Bars.
Here are my sample items (starting clockwise) with links directly to their ingredients pages from the manufacturer if I could find it. I have also indicated which United snackbox you can find these items
- Haribo Gold Bears (Classic snackbox)
- King Leo Royal Mint – Citrus (Savory snackbox)
- WOW Baking Company Chocolate Chip Cookie (Classic snackbox)
- Two Degrees Fruit & Nut Bars (A la carte option)
- POP! Lite Gourmet Popcorn – Sunflower Oil and Sea Salt (Savory snackbox)
- Dairyfood USA Smoked Gouda Gourmet Cheese Cup (Savory snackbox)
- Dairyfood USA White Cheddar Gourmet Cheese Spread (Classic snackbox)
- Wild Garden Traditional Hummus Dip (Tapas snackbox)
- Hormel Genoa Salami (Savory snackbox)
- Mediterranean Snacks Cracked Pepper Lentil Crackers (Savory snackbox)
Also available in the snackboxes but not sent samples:
- Olympos Pitted Green Olives (Tapas snackbox)
- Heritage Roasted Red Pepper Bruschetta
- Mediterranean Snacks Sea Salt Lentil Crackers
- Boulder Canyon Totally Natural Kettle Chips
The boxes range from $7.99 for the Classic snackbox to $8.99 for the Savory and Tapas snackboxes. The Two Degrees Fruit & Nut Bars is $3.99 for a 2-pack box. According to the United Choice Menu page, the menu is “available all day on most North America and Latin America flights (excluding Argentina, Brazil, Peru and Venezuela) over 2 hours. All flights accept credit and debit cards only.”
Overall, I have to say I was very pleased with the new gluten-free options in the United snackboxes. This is a welcome and much-needed addition to their in-flight menu. I don’t usually purchase in-flight meals simply because I feel that more than half of the meal would be wasted on me. With these new, gluten-free options, I would definitely rethink this behavior and probably would buy one of these in-flight snackboxes the next time I fly United. I applaud United Airlines for being one of the first airlines to pay attention to their gluten-free customers by updating their menu.
Thank you United for the opportunity to help inform your gluten-free in-flight menu planning and for the free samples!
I was sent this package free of charge and was not compensated for this post except for the samples.