It’s got to be New York, New Yorrkkkk and there is so much gluten free New York to be discovered. During my last couple of work trips to the City That Never Sleeps, I managed to squeeze in some gluten free adventuring. My main takeaway: there are lots of fantastic coeliac-safe gluten free options in NYC, but also numerous”gluten free” offerings that are not coeliac friendly due to cross-contamination risks. Always ask the extra questions when going to a place that isn’t 100% gluten free – people are usually very helpful and it’s better to be safe than sorry.
After reading a tonne of enthusiastic gluten free reviews about 100% gluten free restaurant Senza Glutine, I knew it was a must-visit for my latest trip. It’s a lovely little Italian place, which would be perfect for date night but equally I happily ate there solo (the joys of business travel). A portion of bruschetta and large serving of mushroom, speck and truffle oil pasta later, I could wholeheartedly agree with the other recommendations for Senza Glutine. It is a must visit for coeliacs in New York.
I chanced across Melt Shop while on the hunt for a late evening snack. My tentative questioning about gluten free options was rewarded by a super friendly server who explained that they had gluten free bread available for toasties and they could toast them in foil so as to avoid cross-contamination. PLUS, their Shop Tots (mini hash browns) are gluten free and cooked in a dedicated fryer so I could have those too. Brilliant! I had a gluten free grilled chicken, sundried tomato, truffle mayo and cheese toastie with a side of Shop Tots and a nutella milkshake…my eyes were bigger than my stomach and I was defeated by the generous portions, but it was great to try their various gluten free dishes. The star of the show here really was the staff – they were fantastic and took extra care once I told them I was coeliac and took the time to run me through their gluten free processes.
Take a stroll across the river to Williamsburg – it’s a cool area with markets to explore, including the Smorgasburg food market. There were a number of gluten free food choices, including epic truffle parmesan hand cut chips with roasted garlic and lemon aioli (drooooool) from Home Frite – I checked with them about whether their food is coeliac friendly and they confirmed they don’t use any wheaty coating on their fries. To go with my fries, I had a quinoa arepa with jumbo shrimp and avocado from Palenque.
Another entirely gluten free bakery, this place does the most wonderful gluten free pastries and savoury baked goods. I had the best raspberry vanilla custard tarlet of my life – the sweet pastry was incredible and the filling and fruit made it totally moreish. If you only have time to visit one gluten free bakery while in New York, make sure it’s NoGlu. I also sampled their sundried tomato and pesto focaccia bread, which was yummy and survived a New York-London flight!
A number of my non-coeliac colleagues recommended Erin McKenna’s bakery to me, as it has quite the reputation. It is a fully gluten free and vegan bakery on Broome Street and I can personally attest that their doughnuts are delicious (salted caramel and Samoa were the flavours I tried…for breakfast one day…what, I was jetlagged!). They have a whole range of baked goods here and the bakery is definitely worth a visit if you are gluten free or coeliac.
A New York institution for pizza, Keste also does a mean gluten free pizza with a soft chewy base and crispy crusts. Awesome pizza that is well worth the queue, or you can also order takeaway/delivery if you’d prefer.
Brunch it up at Bluestone Lane, an Australian brunch spot that has lovely gluten free bread and plenty of coeliac friendly options.
Their corn tortillas are gluten free (avoid the tortilla chips or anything deep fried) and the fillings are awesome. The shrimp was my favourite and their guacamole was gooood! Perfect for late night snackage after the East Village nightlife has worked up your appetite.
Teeny tiny cutesy gluten free cupcakes are the order of the day at Baked by Melissa, as well as macarons. I visited the Fulton Street branch where the cupcakes can be purchased in pre-sealed packs of 25, so no worrying about gluteny tongs being used on gluten free cakes or cross-contamination. Alternatively, visit their entirely gluten free branch in the city if you want to buy a smaller quantity of cakes.
The lobster tail and kale salad here is so fresh and good, plus they also have gluten free bread in case you would rather go for the lobster roll option. There are branches of this chain all over the city – I visited the Fidi branch.
A quick pancake hit, Fresh & Co will sort you out. This chain has tonnes of gluten free options – sandwichs and pancakes included. They keep one side of the griddle gluten free and I asked the cook to change his gloves to ensure there was no cross-contamination. I had gluten free buttermilk pancakes with blueberries and strawberries.
The famous Dominique Ansel bakery did have some gluten free cakes when I went in, but as you can see from the picture below, the gluten free Mini-Me cakes were very friendly with the gluteny eclairs when I went in. As I am coeliac I didn’t want to risk the cross-contamination but if you are just gluten intolerant you may want to check it out.
This is a brand sold all over the place in supermarkets across the city (Duane Reade and Wholefoods, for example). Confession time – I may have developed a mild addiction to Tate’s Bake Shop gluten free chocolate chip cookies. They are AMAZING. Crisp and crunchy and full of chocolate chips. They do great gluten free blondies too, mmmmm.
I didn’t manage to find a coeliac-safe bagel – I headed to Sadelle’s on the advice of another blogger, but there was so much cross-contamination (knife from gluten bagel back into cream cheese pot, the server thinking that if they used their cloth to brush away gluten crumbs then the same surface could be used for gluten free, etc) that I just knew I would get glutened if I had one of their gf bagels. If anyone has reliable tips for a coeliac-friendly bagel place in NYC, please let me know so I can check it out on my next trip.
Other recommendations I received but didn’t get a chance to try myself:
A fully gluten restaurant that looks lovely – top of my list for my next trip.
There was a huge queue every time we tried to go here, but they have the gluten free options marked on the menu and a couple of people had recommended this restaurant to me as a coeliac friendly spot.
I didn’t manage to get to S’mac on my last trip, there’s only so much food my stomach can handle, but apparently it’s great for gluten free mac n cheese.
Another fully gluten free restaurant – focused on operating with a social conscious and serving American cuisine.
This restaurant in Chelsea was another recommendation I received. Apparently they have gluten free bread and a number of gluten free dishes.
Has a gluten free menu.
Delicious food and can cater for gluten free.
For sweet treats that are both gluten free and dairy free.
Gluten free pizza, pasta and dessert.
Healthy gluten free goodies.
Fully gluten-free, with a focus on vegetarian food.
99% gluten free with a focus on healthy, vegetarian food. Good for lunch bowls.
Other blogs worth checking out for gluten free NYC tips:
Gluten Free Globetrotter – lots of great tips from a coeliac New Yorker.
Gluten Free Follow Me – Jackie who runs this account is also coeliac and she is forever posting about mouthwatering gluten free food in NYC on instagram.