I have been on the hunt for coeliac-friendly gluten free kids menus in restaurants recently and, as a result, my toddler has been enjoying some lovely treat meals out and about!
Dining out as a fully grown coeliac is nerve-wracking enough, but the pressure you can feel when feeding a coeliac child is next level. All parents are protective of their children and having to trust a restaurant to cater safely for your little coeliac can be hard.
I am coeliac and so far (fingers crossed) my daughter seems to have her dad’s genes and can eat everything. However, I often eat out with her and when it’s just the two of us she eats gluten free as well. She loves to share her food with me and gluten free food offerings now are so good she really isn’t missing out.
Finding child-friendly restaurants can be a challenge at times and adding in their ability to cater safely for gluten free kids can be a headache. Hence, I decided to compile this list to make it easy for other parents looking for coeliac-friendly restaurants with kids menus.
We have not tried all of these places personally (you’ll see a detailed review where we have, the food having been tested by my coeliac tummy), but I have researched all of these restaurants thoroughly. All restaurants featured here offer a kids menu (or child friendly choices) and are able to cater for coeliacs. I have been coeliac for more than 20 years now and only ever recommend places that have solid processes in place to minimise cross contamination.
That being said, please ALWAYS ask your own questions when you visit. Processes or menus may have changed and you should treat this article as a guide only. Treat this as the first step in your research, giving you suggestions. If you are unsure of what questions to ask, have a read of my Eating Safely at mixed Facility Venues guide. It sets out the sort of questions I tend to ask as a coeliac, to ensure my gluten free meal is safe for me.
Finally, if you have any other recommendations I would love to hear them. I am hoping to build this guide out gradually as we try more places and your tips are always so invaluable.
Right, let’s crack on and have a look at some gluten free kid friendly restaurants then, shall we! I’ve started with a section on nationwide options, then if you scroll down you’ll find city/town-specific recommendations.
Bella Italia offer an Italian-style menu and mention their ability to cater for coeliacs on their website. They offer two kids menus, Piccolo (3 courses and a drink £5.99) for little’uns and Grande (£7.99) for bigger kids.
Ask for the gluten free options when you order and staff will provide guidance. Choices for little coeliacs include cheesy garlic bread, veggie skewers, pizza, pasta, salad, burgers, ice cream and fruit lollies.
This chain of brunch cafes have a good kids menu, which we tried recently. They can cater for coeliacs, with gluten free bread available and dedicated boards and equipment in the kitchen for gluten free orders. We visited the Bristol White Ladies Road branch.
Accredited by Coeliac UK, there are a few gluten free options on the kids menu at Chiquito. Choices include paella, Mexican bean stew, veggie chilli and chocolate brownie with ice cream.
Their kids menu is £5.99 for any main, side, dessert and drink. They also have a dedicated gluten free menu for grown ups with more choices.
The restaurants in this group have a kids menu with gluten free options available. They are able to cater for coeliacs and options include gluten free burger, mezze plate and chocolate brownie.
This chain has various locations across the country and while we have not tried their kids menu, they stress on their website that they cater safely for gluten free customers. The gluten free kids menu options are not extensive but they have gluten free burger and chips and gluten free falafel burger and chips, with ice cream or chocolate brownie for dessert.
We had a fantastic family meal at burger chain Honest Burger recently and Alba loved it (especially rocking out to their restaurant sound track)! I have eaten here a lot yet did not realise that they had a kids menu until this latest visit.
I was impressed with the kids menu. For £6.50, gluten free kids can have a gluten free burger of their choice (beef, chicken or veggie fritter), which you can customise with vegetable and sauce additions – ideal for fussy litte’uns. The burger comes with chips (saltless) and an apple/orange juice or lemonade.
Portions are generous and staff were LOVELY with Alba. We felt very welcome. They have high chairs for kids and baby changing has been available in most restaurants I have visited.
Let them know your child is coeliac when you order and they will take extra care in the kitchen. I have spoken to the restaurant founder before (we interviewed him for our podcast “Oh Crumbs – the Gluten Free Podcast“) and he really reassured me about the solid processes they have in place.
Chicken and chips, a crowd pleaser for the whole family. Nandos have lots of gluten free options and have always catered really well for me as a coeliac. Let them know you are coeliac when you order and the manager will supervise your food being made.
It’s a very family-friendly restaurant chain, with highchairs and baby changing in all the branches I have visited. They offer a Nandino’s menu for kids under 10 with plenty of chickeny choices for coeliac kids. Alba especially enjoyed the bottomless froyo for dessert!
I am a huge fan of Pho, which is a Coeliac UK chain of Vietnamese restaurants. 95% of the menu is gluten free and staff are clued up to advise which items should be avoided. Alba loves eating here!
They have a fab kids menu, which even includes a “Baby Bun” option for under 2s (plain noodles, chicken, cucumber, tomato and prawn crackers – pictured below). For £5.50 gluten free kids can choose from noodles dishes, fried rice, meatballs, soup and curry. For dessert (add 50p-£1) there’s ice cream, fruit or gluten free banana fritters and a drink is included too.
The children’s menu is accredited by Coeliac UK and clearly mark the gluten-containing items that should be avoided by mini coeliacs. Highchairs and colouring packs available too.
Alba has the time of her life enjoying the 3-course Piccolo menu at Pizza Express with her little pal (and obvs us parents!). She has gluten free dough balls, gluten free pizza and ice cream for dessert, plus a bambinocino for extra cute factor. They have plenty of gluten free choices on the kids menu (including a brownie and pasta dishes too), all clearly marked.
Pizza Express is Coeliac UK accredited, for that extra reassurance, and I have always eaten there successfully. High chairs, baby changing facilities and colouring packs available.
Pizza Hut is accredited by Coeliac UK and offers a gluten free kids menu, priced at £5.99 – £7.99. Meal options for gluten free kids include a gluten free pizza (dairy free option available), drink and dessert (brownie, ice lolly, milk shake or ice cream factory).
Another Coeliac UK accredited chain restaurant with an Italian-style menu, Prezzo offers a kids menu with gluten free options. The choices aren’t huge but there are garlic dough dippers, gluten free pasta and ice cream on offer.
For kids aged 5-11 years it’s £6.75 for three courses and drink. For under 5s it’s £3.95 for three courses and a drink from the tots menu.
This fish and chips restaurant group in the South West is Coeliac UK accredited and can cater well for gluten free guests. Their kids menu is £7.95 for a main and dessert, plus kids get an Ocean Protector play pack. Very young children (highchair age) can get a smaller meal and ice cream for £3.95.
They have high chairs and baby changing and we had a very good experience when we visited the Brixham branch.
Local Kids Menus/Kid Friendly Restaurants
Here I have listed restaurants and cafes in specific cities, which are able to cater for gluten free kids. All have a kids menu offering, either one that is specifically gluten free or one that is able to offer gluten free options for children.
All can cater safely for coeliacs, with cross contamination measures in place. However, please always ask questions in case processes or menus have changed since this guide was published. If you are unsure of what questions to ask, have a read of my Eating Safely at mixed Facility Venues guide. It sets out the sort of questions I tend to ask as a coeliac, to ensure my gluten free meal is safe for me.
This section is far from extensive, but gives a few ideas for city-specific locations you might want to try. I would welcome any local reader input to help add further venues to this section, as I am sure you will all know of more gluten free kid friendly venues in your local areas.
With plenty of gluten free choices on their menu, Leadbelly’s in Canada Water also cater ably for gluten free kids. Alba had coeliac-safe battered fish goujons, chips and beans. They have plenty of highchairs and baby changing facilities.
This restaurant in Clapham is super for kids on Sundays when they have a kids activity area and child-sized Sunday roasts. Mommi is Coeliac UK accredited and the majority of the menu is gluten free. We have eaten here a few times and always had a good experience. Main, drink and pud on Sundays for £8.90.
This pizza restaurant in Camden has lots of gluten free, coeliac friendly options with processes in place to minimise cross contamination. Kids under 10 get a free pizza when adults buy a main course and Alba ended up with a huge gluten free pizza all to herself! We loved it.
Although they don’t have a specific kids menu, some of the larger dishes are available as half portions, plus they have porridge and other small kid friendly meals. The cafe is coeliac friendly and you’ll find baby changing facilities on the top floor. We have a good experience at Rosario’s.
Although I couldn’t see a kids menu mentioned specifically, this bowling alley is Coeliac UK accredited and can make safe gluten free pizzas. Ideal for slightly kids if you want a family outing with some pizza sharing :).
This Coeliac UK accredited fish and chip shop offers a gluten free kids menu. I’m hoping to try their food in person later this year and will report back!
I will be adding more venues to this guide soon and would be really grateful for any local tips or suggestions you might have. Either DM me on Instagram or Facebook (I’m @myglutenfreeguide) on those channels or ping me an email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more coeliac tips and gluten free recommendations, why not have a read of one of these:
- Central London Gluten Free Guide
- Gluten Free Recipes
- Where to Buy Gluten Free Birthday Cakes
- Top Gluten Free Products
- How to Be Gluten Free on a Budget