Eat Gluten-Free In Austin: A 2016 Guide to the Best Gluten-Free Restaurants

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Austin, Texas is a vibrant, beautiful city in which to live, and to visit. It’s also a wonderful place in which to find delicious food, with plentiful offerings to suit anyone’s dietary preferences. Most restaurants in the city offer vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options, with some of the city’s restaurants catering solely to one or more of these specific preferences. Naturally, since this blog is devoted to a gluten-free lifestyle, the restaurants listed below are of interest mainly to people who have, or choose, to eat gluten-free. I’ve included fast (though not necessarily fast-food) restaurants as well as more formal restaurants, to suit the needs of those have time for only a quick meal, as well as those who have time to sit and linger over a meal. Continue reading

Gluten-Free @ Austin City Limits 2015

In the past I’ve posted lists of gluten-free / gluten-friendly restaurants

Max's Wine Dive

Max’s Wine Dive

for the benefit of out of town guests attending Austin City Limits and SXSW, in Austin. Look here, here, and here for previous lists. To these lists I’m adding to more restaurants:: Max’s Wine Dive and Cenote.

If you want to cry for joy, for longing, for nostalgia, for something once lost but now regained, run as fast as you can to Max’s Wine Dive and order the gluten-free fried chicken. Continue reading

Gluten-Free SXSW in ATX: 2015

Weather confusion notwithstanding, March has arrived. The month of March brings with it blooming mountain laurels, atx run 2 -25milder temperatures (most of the time), and in Austin, SXSW. Austin’s population necessarily swells as people arrive to participate in the tech, music, and film event of the year. Many of these visitors will be looking for gluten-free dining options: this post is for you.

Tarka Indian Kitchen: this restaurant has a glutenl-free menu. My two Celiac children like the food at Tarka Indian Kitchen, and they’ve never been glutenized by the restaurant.


Mighty Fine Burgers
: I regularly eat burgers from this burger place. I’ve been meaning to write a blog post recommending Mighty Fine Burgers; I never seem to get around to it. The employees at MFB are extremely careful when they take gluten-free orders. They also know what’s gluten-free and what’s not (the chili, sadly, is not). Continue reading

Pizza Hut Announces Certified Gluten-Free Pizza

When I first saw the sign at a Pizza Hut announcing the arrival of gluten-free pizza, I was skeptical. Phil asked me if I

Image from pizzahut.com

Image from pizzahut.com

wanted to try it, and remembering the Domino’s Pizza gluten-free pizza debacle (about which I only read, but never experienced), I decided I’d hold off a while. A plethora of pizza restaurants are offering safely gluten-free pizza these days, so I felt no need to take the Pizza Hut gluten-free purity test. Still, I was curious about Pizza Hut’s success in offering a gluten-free pizza that can be safely consumed by people who have Celiac or suffer from gluten-intolerance. I decided to look into it and found that the Pizza Hut people have taken strong measures to prevent the cross-contamination of its gluten-free pizzas. I don’t know the price of the Pizza Hut gluten-free pizza, but I’m willing to bet that it’s probably less expensive than gluten-free pizzas offered by more exclusive pizza restaurants Currently, Pizza Hut offers its gluten-free pizzas in two flavors: pepperoni and cheese. Customers can order more toppings than pepperoni, of course, but the the Pizza Hut people explain that with the ingredients will have to come from bins from which are taken the ingredients for the regular pizzas; therefore, cross-contamination is more likely if additional ingredients are added to the gluten-free pizzas. Several Pizza Huts in ATX, Cedar Park, and SATX offer the new gluten-free pizza. Has anyone tried the Pizza Hut gluten-free pizza? If so, please leave a comment and let us know what you think of it!

Marvelous Gluten-Free Pizza at Mellow Mushroom

I just recently experienced one of the most delicious gluten-free pizza’s I’ve ever tasted. I like to take my mom out to mellow mushroom pizza 2lunch once a month, and I usually choose restaurants to which she hasn’t been; I try to choose restaurants to which I’ve never been, either. Ever since Mellow Mushroom began offering gluten-free pizza, I’ve been meaning to try it. My mom lives in San Antonio, so for our January lunch outing, I took her to the San Antonio location: 115 North Loop 1604 East (2426 Guadalupe St, in ATX). Mellow Mushroom gluten-free pizza is made with Smart Flour crusts, so it’s vegan as well as gluten-free. The ingredients of the pizza crust are listed on the Smart Flour website.

mellow mushroom 1Our entire experience at the restaurant was pleasant. The service is impeccable; several people in addition to our very attentive server stopped by our table to make sure my mom and I had everything we needed. Most of the regular pizza offerings can be made gluten-free; my mother and I both wanted to try the Kosmic Karma: Red sauce base with feta and mozzarella cheeses, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes and Roma tomatoes with a pesto swirl. Since we wanted to try the same pizza, my mom said she would just share the gluten-free pizza with me. We also each ordered the Greek dinner salad.  The salad was a  common Greek salad, but a better quality than the salads I’ve been served a restaurants lately (an increasing number of restaurants seem to be serving smaller salads with more lettuce cores or wilted lettuce, and a paucity of tomatoes, cucumbers, etc).

The pizza itself was pretty amazing. The ingredients were flavorful, and the crust was perfectly tender, yet crisp. The crust looked and tasted so much like a regular pizza crust that I momentarily panicked upon tasting my first bite; I caught our server’s attention and asked her if she were certain the pizza we were served was gluten-free. She assured me it was. My mom, upon tasting the pizza, said she couldn’t tell the difference between the gluten-free pizza crust and the regular pizza crusts she’s used to eating. Mellow Mushroom definitely made my list of trusted restaurants that serve quality gluten-free food.

Just a note: he pizza was not inexpensive, but then again, people who eat gluten-free are accustomed to paying more for our food, whether at the grocery store or in a restaurant.

Celebrate (A Gluten-Free) Labor Day In Austin

As the long Labor Day weekend arrives, our thoughts turn to the end of yet another summer, the rhythmic and dependable change of seasons

Guacamole with pumpkin seeds and cojita cheese

Guacamole with pumpkin seeds and cojita cheese at Jack Allen’s Kitchen

marked by such natural signs as the end of peach season, and such human signs as the beginning of a new school year. The end of peach season and the beginning of the new school year each bring with them a certain melancholy, for nothing tastes quite as magically and sweetly as a perfectly ripened peach plucked at the  height of the season, and nothing feels as quite as delicious as summer days void of the burdens that school schedules and responsibilities add to family life. Labor Day, the official end of summer, gives us the opportunity for a last gasp at holiday as another lazy summer slips into the past. Unlike most holidays, Labor Day lacks association with traditional foods, and with temperatures still in the triple digits, a nice way to celebrate Labor Day is to stay out of the kitchen. For gluten-free people spending their holiday in Austin (either as a visitor for the long weekend, or enjoying a “stay-cation”), I recommend two restaurants: Jack Allen’s Kitchen and Milano’s Cafe. Continue reading

Austin’s Gluten-Free Friendly Habanero’s Makes The Big Time

Habanero’s is a nice, intimate, gluten-free friendly neighborhood restaurant about which I’ve

Image from habanero.com

Image from Habanero website

previously written. I am pleased to see that it’s mentioned in this Zagat article about emerging foodie streets in Austin. Habanero is noted in the article as an old standby amidst new foodie-magnet restaurants such as Winebelly and AGBG located on W Oltorf (not S Oltorf, as the article’s author mistakenly refers to the street). Habanero’s corn tortillas are made without flour, which is a joyful find in a S Texas world filled with an increasing number of Tex-Mex and Mexican restaurants that add a small amount of wheat flour to their corn tortillas. The wait staff, always eager to help, know all the ingredients in all the dishes and gladly answer questions about the items on the menu. Continue reading

Delicious Tex-Mex: Easy, Safe Gluten-Free Eating At Rosario’s

In a recent blog post, I wrote that I have reduced the number of high carbohydrate foods in my diet. I emphasized in that post that I do not

Rosario's on San Pedro Ave, San Antonio, TX

Rosario’s on San Pedro Ave, San Antonio, TX

plan to completely omit carbs altogether. Food factors into my quality of life and to do away with carbs completely would mean to reduce the joy I derive from eating delicious food; for example, I live in South Texas, where one can find the best, most satisfying, carb-laden delicious Mexican food in the world. Of course Mexican or Tex-Mex food naturally low in carbs is available, but I, for one, cannot and will not resist those traditional enchiladas or tacos just to skip a few carbs. I find other dietary areas from which to delete my carbs – from other foods in which they’re not so irresistible. My claim about the superiority of Tex-Mex food in the Southern region of Texas is fact, not at all hyperbolic. No one has to take my word for it, however; doubters are free to do the field research themselves. I suggest they begin their culinary investigation at Rosario’s in San Antonio. Continue reading

Gluten-Free At SXSW 2014

image from ultimate-image.com

image from ultimate-image.com

Austin is a city filled with restaurants sensitive toward their customers’ individual dietary needs and choices. For this reason, people who have Celiac or are gluten-intolerant will find many places to safely eat a meal while they enjoy SXSW activities. Austin Eater recently published a fairly comprehensive list of gluten-free / gluten-free friendly Austin eateries: http://austin.eater.com/archives/2014/02/19/austins-best-glutenfree-dining-options-mapped.php

Many other gluten-free friendly restaurants are in Austin but are not on the list. One such restaurant is Wholly Cow Burgers. Wholly Cow serves delicious burgers on Udis gluten-free hamburger buns. The possibilities for creating a satisfying burger are practically endless, with a variety of cheeses and toppings from which to choose. Topping offerings include candied jalapenos – I mean, what gets better than a burger topped with candied jalapenos? Don’t forget to order fries, though! Wholly Cow fries (both potato and sweet potato varieties) are fried in a dedicated fryer!!!

Gluten-Free Burger From Wholly Cow

Gluten-Free Burger From Wholly Cow

Two Tex-Mex restaurants (actually, Curra’s is a blend of interior Mexico and Tex-Mex) at which Celiacs / gluten-intolerant people can safely eat are Habanero Mexican Cafe and Curra’s Grill. Continue reading

EZ’s Brick Oven and Grill Update: No More Gluten-Free Buns??!!

Sad news. I went to fulfill my EZ’s burger craving last week and noticed the absence of the bright green menu that usually hangs over ez's burgerthe cash registers. I asked the girl who waited on us about the menu. She handed us paper menus and explained that EZ’s has changed management companies, and as a result the menu is changing. Until the new menu is finalized the giant menu that hangs over the registers will remain missing. I asked her details about the changes. GONE are the gluten-free pizza crust and the gluten-free hamburger bun! I was able to have a burger that night; the girl explained that the restaurants would use up the gluten-free stock they have and the location where my husband and I ate that night (on DeZavala) still had some gluten-free buns in stock. Life has been really busy of late; however, when I get the chance, I will email EZ’s and beg for the company to continue offering gluten-free hamburger buns and pizza crusts. In the meantime, people who need to eat gluten-free and are thinking about heading out to EZ’s for dinner need to call ahead to the location of their choice and find out if that location still has some gluten-free buns or pizza crusts. EZs serves my favorite gluten-free burger! How very unfortunate that the people who make these decisions for EZs would choose to delete the restaurant’s gluten-free options from the menu. Well, at least I recently discovered the gluten-free burgers Hut’s Hamburgers in Austin, a place that rivals EZs as my favorite go-to place for my burger fix.