Eating Out: 7 Tips For Staying Gluten
Tips for Dining Away from Home
Staying gluten-free when dining out can be a source of anxiety. Many restaurants have gluten-free offerings, but how can you be sure that procedures are being followed to avoid cross-contact and that all ingredients used are truly safe?
The best approach to feeling more confident about the place where youre dining is to choose a restaurant that has gone through GIGs Gluten-Free Food Services Validation Program. GFFS works with restaurants and other foodservice establishments, to educate, train, and audit their staff to meet and adhere to the highest standards for preparing gluten-free food. Once they successfully complete the program, they are validated as Gluten Free Safe Spots.
When eating at restaurants that are not validated, follow these tips to help assess the safety of what youre ordering.
1.Choose the right kind of eating establishment.
Your success at gluten-free dining is determined by several factors, including the type of restaurant you choose.
3.Dine early or late.
Time your meal either before or after the busiest mealtime. You will have more time and easier access to the people who can help you. Even the most cooperative server may not have the time you need during rush hour.
4.Clearly explain your dietary restrictions.
When ordering at a food establishment, allow extra time to discuss your needs for a gluten-free meal.
5.Ask to have your food prepared on a clean surface with clean utensils.
Outback Steakhouse And Texas Roadhouse
What You Need To Know: A little friendly competition never hurt anyone. Both of these popular steakhouses have dedicated pages on their company websites informing guests about their approach to gluten-free dining. Visit their sites to prep for your visit and expect a well-informed, friendly response to your dietary restrictions while dining.
Outback Steakhouse and Texas Roadhouse may be fierce competitors in the market, but theyre in perfect harmony when it comes to GF options. Both assert that they take allergies seriously and offer modifications to menu staples for GF visitors. Expect to have solid GF options across the menu, from appetizers to dessert. Its worth noting that Outback Steakhouse has a deeper menu when it comes to GF options and they do not limit your seasoning and butter options for your steak entrée. Touché, Outback.
Outback Steakhouse Gluten Free Menu
Outback Steakhouse is an Australian-themed restaurant serving American food. As their name suggests, they are famous for steaks, chicken, and seafood. Despite an emphasis on meat-based dishes, Outback Steakhouse also offers a number of salads and sides for health-conscious customers, including those looking for a gluten free meal.
According to their official ingredient and allergen information, there are as many as 42 gluten free options at Outback Steakhouse, depending on your level of gluten sensitivity. Some of their most popular gluten free dishes are their four Big Bowl Salads: the Aussie Cobb Salad, the Brisbane Caesar Salad, the Brisbane Caesar Salad with Grilled Chicken, and the Brisbane Caesar Salad with Grilled Shrimp. Top your salad off with one of their gluten free dressings such as Ranch, Caesar, or Honey Mustard.
Looking for a meatier dish? Luckily, most of Outback Steakhouse’s pork-based and beef-based dishes are also gluten free, such as their Sirloin & Grilled Shrimp, Filet Mignon & Lobster, Bone-In Ribeye, Melbourne Porterhouse. Pineapple & Pork Medallions, and Baby Back Ribs. Pair these entrees with one of their gluten free side dishes such as Homestyle Mashed Potatoes, Fresh Seasonal Veggies, or Fresh Mixed Vegetables.
Then finish off your meal with Outback Steakhouse’s Chocolate Thunder From Down Under, a pecan brownie topped with vanilla ice cream.
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Which Independent Restaurants In London Offer A Reasonably Priced Gluten Free Meal
Mommi This fabulous restaurant in Clapham, south west London, offers an exciting menu of Japanese Peruvian inspired dishes. Ive visited a few times and always impressed with their approach to diners with more than one allergy. You can read my post about Mommis entry in the Free From Eating Out Awards . The menu is full of interesting dishes and for me, the Nikkei tempura fish and chips, with wasabi mayo and cassava fries is a stand out in terms of flavours and textures. All dishes at Mommi are gluten free and its also accredited by Coeliac UK. ££
Ceru If you love the flavours of the Eastern Mediterranean, you should head for Ceru with a menu of big, bold Levantine dishes packed with flavour. So much of the menu here is gluten free, including items normally off limits to coeliacs including spice battered squid and there are plenty of options for vegetarians too the sticky aubergines with dates and tamari are a must. Locations in South Ken and Soho
Bird Come here for naturally gluten free finger lickin good fried chicken yes, it really does exist! Bird should probably be in the chain section following their recent expansion
The Vurger Co This vegan and plant based burger resto in Shoreditch offers gluten free burgers and buns. I thoroughly enjoyed eating here, especially as they offer 50/50 fries for those like me who cant decide between regular and sweet potato fries. ££
% Gluten Free Restaurants In London
In truth, I dont make a massive effort to search out 100% gluten free restaurants. Of course Im happy when this is an option, but given the choices and high standards of non-100% gluten free restaurants in London, this is an option for me but not a requirement.
Ardiciocca I adored my meal at this 100% gluten free trattoria and pizzeria in Fulham. If youre looking for the lightest, tastiest gluten free pizza was top quality ingredients, you would be hard pushed to find a better place than this authentic, Italian run restaurant. Despite the lightness of the food I could not help indulging on my meal here. The menu is full of flavour combinations you wont find offered gluten free elsewhere in London from potato and mussel croquettes, arancini, pasta with beef ragu to tripe to pizza Nduja with lemon and rocket. This is a must-visit destination in London. ££
Free From Bakehouse Although Carolines award winning can be bought online and in various outlets ranging from Fortnums to Whole Food Markets, its to Borough Market you should come. The market itself is a wonderful place for a foodie to roam, if a little crowded on a weekend. My favourites are the savoury tarts and the raspberry and white chocolate brownies are impossible for me to resist so good!
Recommended Reading: Do Panko Crumbs Have Gluten
Best Chain Restaurants For Gluten Free In 2019
This awesome list of the 25 best chain restaurants for gluten free dining is the only resource youll ever need for safely eating out gluten free! Not only do these restaurants offer a gluten free menu, but theyre also celiac friendly. This list includes gluten free fast food restaurants and sit down restaurants chains, so you can find exactly what youre looking for! Enjoy safe and delicious gluten free options anywhere in the USA!
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When youre allergic to gluten, eating out can be a challenge. Its hard enough just avoiding obvious gluten without also having to worry about cross contamination too. This list of the 25 BEST Chain Restaurants for Gluten Free takes the guesswork away, so you can confidently enjoy a safe gluten free meal without the worry! Ive personally researched and eaten at every single restaurant on this list Ive even spoken to managers and corporate where necessary to make sure these chain restaurants are safe for celiacs!
These 25 celiac friendly chain restaurants all have gluten free options and/or menus to make eating out gluten free much easier! They also have standards and procedures for dealing with cross contamination, so you know that your meal is safe. These delicious gluten free restaurant chains will keep you coming back for more. Enjoy!
Good For: Your First Step To Finding Gluten Free Restaurants
My first step is always a simple Google search. My preference is to look at articles by bloggers , rather than large sites like TripAdvisor or Yelp.
Why? Its easy for restaurants to be listed in top 10 gluten free restaurants articles on sites like TripAdvisor or Zomato. These articles are automatically generated and all a restaurant has to do to be included is is select a simple tab on their profile this doesnt actually mean they have gluten free options or are safe, though!
I prefer reading bloggers perspectives because they are usually honest, show photos, explain their experience, and sometimes mention cross contact . There are, however, some important caveats to this.
First of all, check when a blog post was published . Many times Ive tracked a restaurant down in person after reading a good review, only to find it permanently closed . Always double check!
Second, just because Joe Bloggs says a restaurant has gluten free hamburger buns doesnt mean they actually do, or still have them, or even prepare them in a safe way. You might have different standards for cross contact than Joe. Joe might have visited the restaurant under different management, or at a different location. These are all things you should keep on your mind, and that well discuss further down in this article!
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Wait Youve Missed My Favourite Gluten Free Bakery Or Restaurant In London From This List Why Is That
Perhaps your favourite spot is one I havent visited, or perhaps I did visit and I didnt have a great experience there, both reasons they might not be in this list.
This is a list of my personal recommendations. This is not a list constructed from google search or other peoples blog posts these are the places I have actually eaten in, sometimes once and sometimes I eat there every week! If you met me in real life, these are the places Id tell you to eat.
However, one other reason there are some notable absences is that I have a nut allergy which means many of the gluten free bakeries which use nuts/nut based flours are off limits for me.
Eating Out Gluten Free At Restaurant Chains
You see, if youre allergic to gluten or have Celiacs Disease, there are a few issues that you sometimes run into.
First, most major restaurant chains dont offer an official gluten free menu. Youll literally have to spend hours at a time looking at a restaurants nutrition and ingredients list manually crossing out unsuitable options for your diet. This is an annoying and painstaking task that should be done by no one, and I mean NO ONE.
And if restaurant does have a gluten free menu, they usually burry it in the archives of their websites where youll literally take hours of your life digging through it into you finally find the menu.
Second, if a restaurant does offer a gluten free menu the kitchen staff, servers, and management are either
Third, certain restaurants are cross contamination havens I mean seriously, some restaurants you go to are so dangerous for gluten free dieters that their dining experience can be deadly.
Its a nightmare.
So hopefully, this listing helped you out!
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Hang On Youve Not Mentioned Where I Can Find Gluten Free Fish And Chips In London Yet
London and the UK may be known for its national favourite of fish and chips but its surprisingly difficult to find coeliac safe fish and chips in London. If youre in a restaurant which claims it has gluten free fish and chips, please do check and double check the batter AND that they have a separate and dedicated fryer as this is not always the case.
The Mayfair Chippy Im a huge fan of this stylish fish and chip shop with three locations in the capital. Dedicated fryers here make this a good choice for coeliac safe fish and chips. Vegans wont go hungry here either. If, like me, you live close to the Clapham location then you can have you gluten free fish and chips delivered directly to your door via Deliveroo. ££
Olleys Fish and ChipsOlleys opposite Brockwell Park offers Coeliac UK certified gluten free fish and chips every day of the week! But you dont have to take my word for for how good their fish and chips are in 2019 Olleys have just been rated in the Top 10 fish and chip shops in all the UK! Olleys is 10 minutes by overland train from Victoria station to Herne Hill. ££
The Seine Rigger technically this is not in London but I enjoyed the fish and chips here so much Ive had to include it. If youre in south London, this might be an option. Please do call ahead to make sure the separate fryer is on and for them to prepare a fresh batch of the gluten free batter.
Pie Five Pizza Company
Pie Five uses all natural, organic, preservative-free tomato sauce they make in-house, all natural chicken breast, and 100% pork sausage with no antibiotics or hormones. Their gluten free crust is provided by Smart Flour, which produces all of its gluten free products from Ancient Grains including teff, amaranth and sorghum flours, giving the pizza crust an enhanced nutritional profile with more vitamins, minerals and fiber than pizzas made from other gluten free flour combinations. Read More
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My Philosophy For Eating Out Gluten Free
Before I get into my step-by-step guide for finding safe gluten free restaurants, I want to lay out my philosophy for eating out gluten free.
I have two auto-immune conditions Celiac Disease and Eosinophilic Esophagitis which means I need to be particularly vigilant about maintaining a gluten free diet or I might end up in the hospital with food stuck in my esophagus. Which happened three times in my first year of being a Celiac, the first of which led to my diagnosis.
My needs might be different than yours you might just be avoiding gluten because it makes you feel terrible when you eat it, which is great and Im glad youre here which is why I want to take a second to outline exactly what my needs are.
When it comes to gluten free dining, I prefer eating out at dedicated gluten free restaurants when possible for a couple of reasons.
First, the risk of cross-contamination is significantly lower than eating at a place with a mixed kitchen. For me, the peace of mind is worth the extra money that youre usually going to be spending.
So when youre eating out gluten free, make sure to support the dedicated gluten free restaurants.
If they dont have those processes, or cant articulate them to me, Im out.
Here are some other semi-random thoughts on eating out gluten free in mixed kitchens.