For San Francisco's Sensitive Sweet Tooth: Get Your Gluten-Free Goodies Here

The Bay Area has not only embraced but started many food movements. AliceWaters' famous restaurant, Chez Panise in Berkeley, practically spawned the entire organic food movement in this country. And the idea to eat locally sourced food has been practiced in the Bay Area for decades. So it was only a matter of time before gluten-free menus would cover this progressive place.

Unlike gluten-free dinner or lunch menus, gluten-free desserts and baked goods are a specific challenge since most flours and baking recipes involve gluten. If you're eating a muffin, a slice of toast, a piece of cake or just a plain old bagel, you're almost certainly eating gluten. Even oats can contain gluten because most oats are mass produced and can be contaminated with wheat products that contain gluten. 

Determining what has gluten is only the first step. Getting the gluten out can be tricky, since removing gluten can also involve removing some of the beneficial vitamins and minerals connected to gluten. The bakeries below are conscious of replacing the benefits, though. For example, instead of using wheat, some bakeries will use nutritious brown or white rice flour. And instead of using a standard but necessary starch in baklng, bakeries may use potato starch or tapioca starch as a substitute.

Whatever these bakeries decided to take out, rest assured there's one thing they decided to leave in: great taste. 

Balboa Cafe Mill Valley opened in 2008 in the same tradition and spirit as the renowned Balboa Cafe in San Francisco. This location in the bucolic town of Mill Valley, has made an impression among locals and visitors as a classic American Bistro...  Read More

If you're looking for gluten-free, your search might start and stop at Mariposa. Mariposa's first few years were spent in a shared kitchen in West Berkeley, California. Their popularity grew, so they needed bigger ovens, which spurred a move in...  Read More

DeLessio Market & Bakery

Ask anyone about DeLessio's and their eyes will sparkle with delight as they mention the place's decadent macaroni and cheese, tasty gourmet sandwiches, and impressive buffets. When the topic of desserts and pastries comes up, however, those...  Read More


Crave is a neighborhood restaurant serving sandwiches, salads and breakfasts featuring fresh, locally-sourced ingredients. Crave is also proud to serve Ritual Roasters coffee and espresso drinks, along with a thoughtful selection of wine and...  Read More

While plenty of places serve up Blue Bottle's famous roast, the Mint Plaza location, housed in the elegant 1912 Provident Loan Building, is the original headquarters. Known for its individually brewed drip coffee, this San Francisco favorite...  Read More

If you want to ease your social conscience as you gobble down a blueberry muffin, swing by Hayes Valley Bakeworks. Besides offering delectable morning pastries, cookies, porridge bowls and signature sweets, this bakery trains and employs people...  Read More

Tartine Bakery

Devoted to premium, organic ingredients, this bakery willingly acknowledges that its menu selections depend on everything from seasonal goods to chef-driven whims. Even with such a (mild) disclaimer, it's pretty well certain you'll go away with...  Read More

You'll find much more than just delicious coffee at the aptly named Coffee Bar, but this charming cafe is definitely known for its java. The beans come directly from Mr. Espresso, a family-owned and operated Bay Area coffee producer since the...  Read More


The cheery bakery and cafe Flour and Co. sticks out among the upturned noses of Nob Hill's high-end restaurants like an unabashedly happy smiley face. If the gourmands of Nob Hill have you too self-conscious about which is the salad fork and...  Read More

Locals love this cooperative bakery for its delicious pastries, artisan breads and gourmet pizza. Just two blocks from Golden Gate Park, Arizmendi offers its specialties on a weekly schedule, and depending on the day, patrons enjoy assorted...  Read More


Meet Tom Molanphy

The only thing that Tom Molanphy loves more than the food, art, music, and culture of San Francisco is sharing it with others. San Francisco never gets old for Tom.

Tom has lived in the San...  More About Tom

comments powered by Disqus

Build your own lists that you can easily reference or share stories with your friends.

Login ×

Forgot login/password?
Don't have an account? Create Your Account!

Enter your username or email in the box below and click
"Remind Me".

Remind Me ×
Create Account ×
Create Account ×

Already have an account?

Add to List ×
Save ×

Go to Lists Close Window ×