Where to Eat Gluten-Free in Atlanta
As dietary needs evolve, Atlanta’s restaurants have responded with vegan and vegetarian options. No longer do those with celiac disease or a gluten allergy need to be relegated to one or two dishes on the menu. Instead, they can choose from several dishes at the restaurants listed below.
- Mediterranea – Special mention to Mediterranea for being entirely gluten free. Here, those with gluten intolerance don’t have to ask questions. Owner Gerard Nudo’s partner is affected by celiac disease, so making sure the entire menu is gluten-free is important to the owners of this Grant Park restaurant. Get the quartet of spreads – an eggplant being the best one. The bread is quite tasty even to this non-gluten free eater. Shrimp and polenta are outstanding as well. Mediterranea shines as a bakery though. The chive biscuit is flaky and savory and so is the scone. Had I not been told, I wouldn’t have known these bakery items were gluten free.
- 1Kept – Though it can be difficult to find, with not much signage, this restaurant is well worth seeking out. Not only are several options gluten-free, the restaurant even keeps gluten-free beer on hand. Several of the appetizers are gluten free or can be made so by omitting the bread. For entrees, indulge in items like a vegetable risotto, pork loin, salmon or shrimp and grits.
- 10 Degrees South – The first South African restaurant in Atlanta offers gluten-free highlights such as prawns and ostrich medallions. There are a couple of steak options that are gluten-free. A seafood standout is the Cape Kingklip, a South African fish. Tip: There’s a lovely patio with live music on weekends.
- Bantam + Biddy – Looking for a brunch spot or casual dinner? Bantam + Biddy has you covered with lots of gluten-free options. Try starters like fried green tomatoes or deviled eggs. At breakfast both the omelet and protein scramble are gluten-free. Personally, I’d go for The Southern – three farm eggs, Anson Mills creamed grits, pimento cheese, fried okra, Patak bacon, cornbread. It’s one of the breakfast items that is served all day every day. At dinner, options like salmon and shrimp and gluten-free as well.
- Better Half – Many of the items already on the menu are gluten-free, and the wait staff is well versed to help you pick out those items. However, some others can be made gluten free when you provide advance notice to the restaurant. Go ahead, wow your gluten-averse sweetie with a special meal here.
- Cape Dutch – The swanky Buckhead restaurant is perfect for a special occasion. Maybe you are celebrating a birthday with friends. If one of them happens to eat gluten-free, she will find a variety of both steak and seafood options, including rib eye, veal tomahawk, sea bass, elk and lamb shank.
- Chai Pani – Just because it’s gluten-free doesn’t mean it falls short on flavor at this Indian street food-style restaurant in Decatur. Gluten-free options include the corn bhel, composed of (besides corn), cucumber, mint, tomato, onions and cumin-lime dressing. Another choice is chicken pakoras, featuring a curried chickpea batter served with green chutney and sweet yogurt, and there’s also a green mango chaat, with peanuts, golden raisins, onions, cilantro, green chutney and fried curry leaves. For a gut buster, indulge in the Bombay chili cheese fries, topped with spiced lamb hash, tomato, onion, cilantro, tomato chutney and a drizzling of Chai Pani’s signature “special hot stuff.”
- CO – This Asian restaurant features different types of cuisine from Southeast Asia. Expect to find noodles, sushi and banh mi sandwiches. And if you’re gluten-free, there’s a separate menu with lots of tasty choices. Malaysian chili chicken wings, pho, Hanoi noodles and a spicy tuna roll are all gluten-free. Plus the prices at CO are so affordable.
- Davio’s – This Buckhead restaurant features separate gluten-free items for both lunch and dinner. Besides many cuts of steaks, halibut and scallop dishes are gluten-free.
- Ecco – You could make a meal from the charcuterie board, which is mostly gluten-free as denoted on the menu, but there’s so much more to explore. An octopus with chorizo is a super starter if meats and cheeses aren’t your thing. Plus, entrees like the lamb shank and Arctic char are gluten-free, too.
- Eclipse di Luna – Gluten-free with a Latin flair? Just say, “Si!” Start your meal with the ahi tuna ceviche with serrano chiles for a bit of a kick. Tapas dishes include the grilled chicken with confit potato and salsa, sirloin steak with roasted scallions, marcona almond and piquillo pepper romesco.
- Hampton + Hudson – Located in Inman Park’s Inman Quarter, this sports bar offers so much more than a spot to catch your favorite game. The curried deviled eggs with bacon are the perfect way to start your gluten-free meal. If you want to keep it light, the salad with fall squash and peanut vinaigrette is a great option. If you’re splurging on calories, get the nachos libre or hangover fries topped with pork chile verde, cheddar and a fried egg.
- Hobnob – This Ansley neighborhood spot is quite popular for meeting up with friends. And the restaurateurs are serious about their gluten free items including many salads, pizzas and even a burger.
- Iberian Pig – This beloved Decatur spot has a lot of menu space devoted to gluten-free dining. One of the best is the duck breast. Other notable gluten-free options include bacon-wrapped dates and grilled eggplant with corn salsa, heirloom tomatoes and manchego.
- Red Pepper Taqueria – You may be surprised to know that a full 90 percent of the menu here can be made gluten-free. Some items are naturally gluten-free, but many tacos can become gluten-free by swapping to corn tortillas. Just ask your server.
- Saltyard – Sharing really is the best way to dine together. Buckhead’s Saltyard is perfect for this, dividing the menu into small shares, large shares and farm shares. And you can do this even if you are dining gluten-free as nearly 60 percent of the menu is or can be modified to be gluten-free. Start with items like the sea scallops or octopus (I loved the cilantro and chorizo in this dish.). Other must-order dishes are the duck confit with fried cabbage and smoked beet salad. And gluten-free diners don’t have to skip dessert as both a creme brulee and chocolate marquise are gluten-free.
- Under the Cork Tree – This Sandy Springs restaurant has a huge menu, and many of the tapas and entrees are gluten-free. Tapas are the way to go if you want to sample a bit of everything. “GF” items are easily noted on the menu and include terrific items like the ahi tuna, artichokes, lamb ribs, scallops and many more delicious items. Big plates like the leg of lamb, steak and paella are gluten free as well.
- Wahoo Grill – The menu here improves as years go by. Wahoo has a new chef, Robbie Pacheco, who’s breathed new life into the menu. And there are still terrific gluten-free choices like the braised short rib with parsnip puree and the New York strip, as well as the grilled duck breast with succotash and citrus gastrique. Several of the menu items can also be made gluten-free upon request. I love that the menu lists all allergens, too, like soy, nut, dairy.
Malika Bowling is the author of Culinary Atlanta: Guide to the Best Restaurants, Markets, Breweries and More!, and founder of Roamilicious. Malika also has served as a judge at various culinary competitions and food festivals, including Taste of Atlanta. Her podcast, Just a Byte, can be downloaded from iTunes. Follow her on Twitter @MalikaBowling and Instagram.
Get to know Atlanta, and discover the best things to do around the city.