DC GFree Eats

Amsterdam Falafel – Adam’s Morgan
Fresh falafel with no pita, plus unlimited amazing toppings (hummus, beet salad, cucumbers) for $5.

Baked and Wired – Georgetown
Best baked goods in DC, hands down. I’ve had a delicious blondie and caramel bar there so far, but they also have cupcakes and cookies (usually at least one gluten free of each). They also have really solid coffee/espresso to wash them down.

Bluejacket at The Arsenal – Navy Yard
Fresh baked gluten free brioche buns for burgers, and they supply crispy chickpeas as an alternative for bread! Only downside is watching your dining companions taste their beers, since your only gluten free option is wine.

Cafe Ole – McLean Gardens
If you had a Lebanese grandmother, this is what she would cook you. Fresh, seasonal dishes (like this ratatouille topped with poached eggs) and lovely service.

Casa Luca – Logan Circle
I’ve declared Casa Luca to have the best gluten free pasta in the District, and I stand by that.

Churchkey - U Street
Six gluten free beers, including Estrella Damm Daura, my fave. They also have great cheese platters, and will bring up chickpea crackers from the restaurant downstairs, Birch and Barley, if you ask for them. Just added flatbreads to their menu.

Crios – Dupont Circle
As the sister restaurant to Scion (below), one can only expect this “modern Mexican” restaurant to deliver a solid brunch. Their yucca fries are reason enough to try this place.

District of Pi - Penn Quarter
Delicious salads, big enough to share, and thin crust pizza.

Ella’s Pizza – Metro Center
Pizza that tastes “just okay”, with gluten free beers and appetizers.

Firefly – Dupont
Gluten free menus for all meals, lots of gf desserts, plus fries and $2 mimosas at brunch!

Indique – Cleveland Park
Naturally gluten free appam rice bread to scoop up your curry!

Nellie’s Sports Bar – U Street
Arepas stuffed with a variety of toppings, menu marked gluten free.

Open City – Woodley Park
They do have gluten free pizza, but no longer carry gluten free beers, and quality has gone down in my opinion. Not worth the long waits on weekends.

Pulpo – Cleveland Park
Gluten free eggs benedict (served on rice) and great brunch.

Red Velvet Cupcakery – Chinatown
Best and most chocolatey cupcake I’ve ever eaten.

Ripple – Cleveland Park
Almost all of the menu is gluten free – including the french fries and soft shell crab. Plus a great offering of $6 glasses of wine.

Scion – Dupont Circle
Scion is my all time favorite brunch spot in DC. Since they have a dedicated fryer, you can order all the fried potatoes your heart desires. They keep the bottomless mimosas coming, and provide a fresh fruit bar to nosh on while you wait for your food. The staff is friendly and knowledgeable, and the relaxed atmosphere is exactly what I want on a weekend morning.

Sticky Fingers Bakery – Columbia Heights
Massive chocolate chip cookies full of brown sugar, wraps, sandwiches, and pancakes on the weekends.

Tryst – Adam’s Morgan
Giant cups of coffee, full bar, gluten free muffins and flourless chocolate cake.

Zengo – Chinatown
$5 mojitos and mini arepas for Happy Hour.

14 responses to “DC GFree Eats

  1. I like that you have listed places that appear to actually cater to GF diners, not just the places that “can accomodate” GF (which is what most lists I have found on line are like). My favorites are Jose Andres’ restaurants: Jaleo, Oyamel, Zatinya. Rustico is also good and has a few GF beers that I haven’t seen elsewhere.

  2. Thanks, Justin! Since I just moved here, I’m building the list as I try places – but I do only try to post restaurants that I would recommend and that you can find something worth the trip and $$. I loved Oyamel and Zatinya as well – the chickpeas in the shell at Zatinya are amazing! Thanks for the tip on Rustico – it looks great! I loooove chickpea crusts :)

  3. Do you have a useful resource for finding local restaurants with GF menus? Again, when I say a good resource, I mean one that really differentiates bewteen “accomodating” and providing complete GF dishes. I find that most resources (Yelp, Urbanspoon, even the DCCeliac Yahoo group/listserve that maintains a “database” of GF restaurants) are littered with places that are only accomodating… like Chipotle (which I have had bad experiences with) or something similar… places where you have to order cautiously or modify a menu item so severely it is no longer recognizable. I think quick-bite type places in the full-GF category are particularly hard to find, but it looks like you have a few listed on here.

  4. I feel your frustration with long/unhelpful lists. The Gluten Free Registry has a list that you can filter so it doesn’t include restaurants that are only accommodating. However, the dreaded Chipotle is still on it :) I’ll keep posting restaurants as I find them here, but I won’t post a place unless I’ve been there in person and know that it’s the real thing. If I find something better I’ll let you know! http://glutenfreeregistry.com/gluten-free-state-search.do?state=DC&multipleLoc=Y&inclAccommodates=N&city=All%20Cities

    • Here’s a recipe I found (and moiiedfd slightly). I’ve been GF for a year, and am still learning. Baking with GF flours is always an experiment, and it certainly helps to keep xanthan gum on hand (helps mimic gluten in some things, and reduce the unavoidable crumbliness of it all).3c Gluten Free Flour (I use Bette Hagman’s recipe for Gluten Free Mix)4 tsp Dried Yeast1/2 tsp sugar1 tsp salt1 1/2 tbsp canola or olive oil1 egg (this I added as the dough was very crumbly otherwise you might want to try 1-2tsp of xanthan gum if you have it)Combine yeast, sugar and 3 tablespoons of warm water in a small bowl and set aside until foaming. Sift the flour and slat into a large bowl. In a separate bowl mix together 1c warm water and the oil, then pour into a well in the dry ingredients along with yeast mixture. Mix together with wooden spoon until all combined. [This is where we realized it needed a little more fluid, so we added a splash of water and an egg].Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Cover and set aside in a warm place for about 1hr, until doubled in size.Punch down dough, knead lightly. Divide dough into 2 portions, and form onto 2 10 3/4inch pizza trays.Add toppings and all that yummy stuff. Bake at 425F for approximately 20min.The crust came out thin (which we really enjoyed) it wasn’t your traditional pizza dough consistency, though the xanthan gum may help add a little chewiness to it.Hope this works out for you!

  5. I’m just starting out avoiding gluten and my son has a peanut allergy so now we are going to find it even more difficult to eat out. I have to sneak one of the fantastic Red Velvet Cupcakery GF chocolate cupcakes into the house so that he doesn’t see them. We regularly eat at a Japanese restaurant called Momiji in Chinatown and have never had a problem. The waitress, Miss Penny, is great about catering to our dietary needs and always lets us read the packaging if we need to. Royal Thai next door is also a good place for a GF meal, though not so good for the peanut allergy of course. And of course Zaytinya and Jaleo have great GF and nut free options. Not sure how I’m going to be able to resist the awesome Zaytinya bread though.

    • At Zaytinya I love to get the roasted chickpeas as an appetizer. That way you have something to occupy yourself while everyone eats the bread. They’re actually still in their shells and you pop them out – salty and really yummy!

      Thanks for the rec on the Asian places as well – I’m always looking for some good, spicy Thai food!

  6. glutenfreerollercoaster

    Awesome post! If you ever venture over to Northern Virginia Fireworks in Arlington (Court House) can make any of their woodgrilled pizza’s on a gluten-free crust http://www.fireworkspizza.com/Arlington/Web/Menu.php and they have a few gluten-free beers and ciders. Also Rustico in Alexandria/Ballston has really good gluten-free pizza/beers/ciders http://rusticorestaurant.com/menus/documents/SlatersDinner.pdf.

  7. Great list!! Thanks for this–there are a few on here that I had no idea made gluten free food!! Also check out: Roti (near Metro Center), which is a greek fast food restaurant that has gluten free pitas; Wildfire in Tyson’s corner, which even has gluten free bread to go with your meal; Fuel, which just opened near the Verizon Center and has gluten free pizza; Hello Cupcake in Dupont Circle, which has a pretty big variety of GF cupcakes (the flavors change every day); Z-Pizza, which actually delivers GF pizza (there is a location in Chinatown and another one in Arlington). I also second Rustico in Alexandria, which is my favorite restaurant in the area. Love your blog :)

  8. Great list! Thank you!!! I have passed several of these places on a daily basis and had no idea they had gluten free food! A few others that I recommend: Roti (near Metro Center), which is a fast food Greek restaurant that has GF pitas; Wildfire in Tyson’s Corner, which even serves GF bread with your meal; Fuel (near the Verizon Center), which just opened and apparently has a GF pizza; Graffiato (also near the Verizon Center), which has GF pasta; Hello Cupcake (Dupont Circle), which has a pretty big variety of GF cupcakes and the flavor changes each day; Z-Pizza (there is one in Chinatown and one in Arlington), which actually delivers GF pizza (I love their super fresh and healthier ingredients). I also second Rustico in Alexandria, which is one of my favorite GF restaurants in the area.

  9. Zorba’s labels their GF items on the menu, and they have a dedicated fryer. Dupont Circle.

  10. Love this! For anyone who ventures out to Clarendon, my fave pizza is at Pete’s (there’s also one in Columbia Heights). Fuego (Mexican tequileria) just opened and is SUPER GF friendly. They fry their chips in a dedicated “chips only” fryer, so there is very little chance for cross contamination. I also recently went to the Inn at Little Washington and they created an entire GFree tasting meal for me. I’ll be looking for updates to this list! :)

  11. I am visiting in DC for GW graduation. Love Scion. My son lives in the navy yard and wanted to go to dinner in that area. He phoned Gordon Biersch and they said they had a GF menu. Looked online and only found disclaimer about possible cross continuation. So I was not totally trusting and ate a sandwich before I went. When we got there they had no GF menu but chef said he would make me salmon, mashed potatoes, and veggies. I said ok – still not convinced. But I ate some of it – delicious- and no after effects. Felt great to eat with everyone.

  12. Another vote for gluten-free pizza from Pete’s New Haven Style Pizza — there are locations all over the DC metro area (Friendship Heights, Silver Spring, etc.)! Zaytinya is also great for those of us who are both vegetarian and gluten free!

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