Gluten-Free by the Golden Gate: San Francisco's 10 Best Gluten-Free Restaurants

What's the deal with gluten? For a myriad of reasons, some hard to pin down, this simple protein is getting a bad rap for being the meanest bully on the food block. Gluten-free diets are all the craze: celebrities from Miley Cyrus to Al Roker are forsaking the protein, and there's even a Gluten Free Expo in Sandy, Utah that drew thousands and thousands of eager devotees. 

But for those who have the rare disease called celiac, the choice to go gluten-free has nothing to do with fads, celebrities, or expos. Since their bodies can't tolerate gluten, which is a protein found in rye, wheat and barley, they have to avoid it all costs. And since gluten can be found in almost all baked goods (and most beers..!), locating that expertly made gluten-free chocolate cake to accompany your after-dinner coffee becomes a must.

But since gluten is almost always accompanied by other necessary proteins and vitamins, such as zinc, B12, iron, phosphorous and calcium, those who don't really need to be gluten-free should talk to their doctor. Or approach your "gluten-free" diet the same as you would a vacation: it's a nice place to visit, but you wouldn't want to live there.



Nopa defies categorization as either old or new because it has some of both. Although it's only been around since 2006, chef Laurence Jossel worked at several traditional and popular restaurants before Nopa and brings professionalism and...  Read More



Specializing in fish, Pacific Catch combines innovative cooking styles from Asia, Latin America and Hawaii with fresh, local ingredients to create a California-style cuisine all its own. Patron favorites include the raved-about island fish tacos...  Read More



High ceilings and awesome Bay views establish a unique atmosphere at this well-received waterfront venue. Style and spectacle are grounded, though, by Slanted Door's authentic country Vietnamese dishes, which get a California kick from local...  Read More



If you still have savory dreams from childhood of two slices of perfectly buttered toast squeezing out melted cheddar cheese, this restuarant is for you. And, even though the recipe is simple, they take their one product very seriously, with...  Read More

DOSA on Valencia


Dosa provides some of the finest authentic Indian Cuisine in San Francisco. The restaurant derives its name from its specialty dish, the dosa, which is similar to a crepe, it is made from rice & lentils (no wheat) and served with a variety...  Read More



Lynn Gorfinkle and Josh Spiegelman – the inspired and conscientious owners of Roam Artisan Burgers, with two San Francisco locations and one in the East Bay – have made a hamburger that's a cut above all the rest. Every ingredient on Roam's...  Read More



The "gluten-free" craze certainly has its share of cynics. Since gluten has been in food since, well, biblical times, there are naysayers who claim it's just a strange fad and not really based on any true health issues. Those naysayers should...  Read More

Noe Valley


Marked only by the image of a firefly, this neighborhood restaurant features a fabric-draped ceiling and impeccable seasonal cuisine. Local, organic ingredients play a major role in the menu, especially in favorites like shrimp and scallop...  Read More



When a big popular tend like gluten-free comes along, it's definitely important to distinguish the posers from the true believers. If you want to eat where they take gluten - or the lack of it - very seriously, head to one of the Plant's six...  Read More



One of three locations, the Valencia Street restaurant in the Mission District is where the magic that is Pica Pica first happened in 2010. Fitting in perfectly with its surroundings full of Latin flair, this Maize Kitchen is open for lunch,...  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.

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