Why is everyone but me so upset by Papa John’s Gluten Free Pizza?

Kudos to Papa John’s for creating a Gluten Free Pizza Crust! But as they say, no good deed goes unpunished. But why does everyone seem so upset with them?

Let me start off by saying that I love pizza.  Heck, I’m from NY where we have the best pizza, or at least that is the way I remember it before going gluten free!

Pizza is a staple, its a part of life.  And some from where I am from would argue that pizza is one of the basic needs to sustain life – somewhere on the chart higher than shelter!

Before I start my rant – please keep in mind that I’ve never eaten at a Pappa John’s.  They came into my ‘hood after I was diagnosed with Celiac.  Peyton Manning loves them, so they must be good pizzas, right?

Celiac Safe Pizza?

Most corner pizzerias by me have huge signs that read “Try our Gluten Free Pizza and Pastas”.   But when you start asking questions most are completely unaware of cross contamination, the need for separate prep areas, cheese, sauce, topping, etc.

There are a few places that actually get it.  These are the places that get my money, but sometimes life is not perfect and I end up paying double.  Get it???

So what is the Internet’s problem?

From my point of view, there is no problem.   Papa John’s did the right thing with how they market the crust.

From their online menu:

(not recommended for customers with Celiac Disease).


And in their FAQ:

Papa John’s does not recommend pizzas with Papa John’s Ancient Grains Gluten-Free Crust for customers with Celiac Disease. Although Papa John’s Ancient Grains Gluten-Free Crust is gluten-free and Papa John’s employs procedures to prevent contact with gluten, it is possible that a pizza with Papa John’s Ancient Grains Gluten-Free Crust is exposed to gluten during the ordinary preparation process. Please use your best judgment in ordering a pizza with Papa John’s Ancient Grains Gluten-Free Crust if you have a sensitivity to gluten.

And for some reason that has the internet going ape!

Why I applaud Papa John’s

I’m very excited to see that Papa John’s did the right thing by coming straight out by saying that there might be cross contamination in their kitchen.  I mean…. DUH!

Unless the kitchen is separate, or their staff has met strict Gluten Free training, would you expect a kid (yes kid) to understand that they can’t use the same cheese, sauce, pans, utensils, or even have to wash their hands before creating a gluten-free pizza?   Heck no!

So I say – great job Papa for being honest.   I wish more local pizza joints would do the same.  Thank you Papa John’s for understanding that Gluten Free is not just a fad diet, but it is actually something that those of us with Celiac Disease need to watch closely.


I'd love to know what you think.... please leave me a comment below!