Where is sesame found?
Sesame seeds and oil are common food ingredients around the world. In addition, sesame is often found in spice blends and flavorings, but since recipes for these items are often proprietary, sesame may not be listed on all ingredient labels involving spices.7 Because sesame seeds are often used atop bread, other baked goods, and salads, there is a risk of cross-contamination, particularly in bakeries and at deli and salad counters. What's more, the seeds often develop a static charge and cling to surfaces such as other foods and clothing, furthering the risk of cross-contamination.4
Foods that may contain sesame include:7 Asian cuisine, baked goods (e.g., bagels, bread, hamburger buns, rolls), breadcrumbs, cereals (e.g., granola, muesli), chips (e.g., bagel, pita, tortilla), crackers (e.g., melba toast, sesame snap bars), dipping sauces (e.g., baba ghanoush, hummus, tahini sauce), dressings, falafel, flavored rice and noodles, gravies, goma-dofu (sesame tofu), herbs and herbal drinks, hummus, margarine, marinades, pasteli (sesame seed candy), processed meats and sausages, protein and energy bars, sauces, snack foods (e.g., pretzels, candy, halvah, rice cakes), shish kebabs, stews, stir fries, soups, sushi, tempeh, Turkish cake, and vegetarian burgers.
In addition, the following ingredients may indicate the presence of sesame and should be avoided by allergic individuals:7 benne, benne seed, benniseed, gingelly, gingelly oil, gomasio (sesame salt), sesame flour, sesame paste, sesame salt, sesamol, sesamum indicum, sesemolina, sim, tahini, tahina, tehina, and til.
Nonfood products that also may contain sesame include cosmetics (such as soaps and creams), medications, and nutritional supplements.7