Tasty Eats Without the Wheat: Gluten Free Restaurants in Santa Barbara

Experts estimate that 1 in every 100 people have celiac disease - a digestive disorder related to the consumption of gluten - and a much higher percentage of the population has gluten sensitivity. 

In a related but unofficial study, our travel experts estimate that a full 100% of those with gluten sensitive stomaches enjoy taking a trip from time to time. But where to eat? 10Best will show you the way!

Whether you're allergic to wheat or just enjoy the benefits of gluten-limited diet (we hear some people report feeling less fatigued after making the switch), you should add Santa Barbara to your list of a delicious dream destinations. This small city by the beach has multiple restaurants with gluten-free options to delight your taste buds throughout the day. Enjoy gourmet breakfasts, lunches and dinners that meet your dietary needs with ease. 

For breakfast, we recommend that you head to Backyard Bowls for a refreshing acai bowl or hot quinoa bowl topped with fresh, local berries. At lunch time, check out The Natural Cafe in the heart of downtown and do a little sightseeing. For dinner, enjoy a steaming hot pie from Persona Wood Fired Pizzeria. Ready for dessert? Lilac Patisserie has cakes, cookies and more to satisfy every sweet tooth. 



With a menu that's naturally gluten-light, Brasil Arts Cafe serves a variety of meats and fish paired with yucca roots, chimichurri and more. Their menu has a strong focus on serving high-quality local meats and produce. In addition to...  Read More

The Natural Cafe
Photo courtesy of Geneva Ives


With 10 locations in the surrounding areas, The Natural Cafe is a Santa Barbara small business success story. A local favorite for vegetarian and vegan options, this popular lunch and dinner restaurant also serves up delicious chicken and fish...  Read More



When you're looking for a healthy bite in downtown Santa Barbara, consider a visit to Silvergreens. Everything on the menu - from the soups to the breads to the salad dressing - is made from scratch in their kitchen daily. There are also...  Read More



A fine local restaurant with one of the best salad bars in town, Savoy Cafe & Deli is a great choice for an easy breakfast, lunch or dinner. Mornings highlight fresh eggs, piping hot coffee, gluten-free pastries and loose-leaf teas. At lunch...  Read More



Do you like cakes? How about pies? We thought so! For the best, freshest, most homemade pies in Santa Barbara, head to Crushcakes Cafe & Simply Pies. They make scrumptious cupcakes and mouthwatering pies using the freshest local ingredients....  Read More



What's that? You want a wood-fired pizza, made to order, cooked in just 90 seconds? Coming right up! Oh, you're a vegetarian? A meatetarian? Gluten-free? No problem! Stop by Persona Pizzeria on State Street in Santa Barbara to get a personal...  Read More



Their slogan says it all: better life through better food. Don't let your meals slow you down - you can grab complete nutrition on the go at Backyard Bowls. Serving acai bowls, whole grain bowls and nutritious smoothies, Backyard Bowls offers...  Read More



Our Daily Bread has been a Santa Barbara favorite since it first opened its doors in 1981. Beloved for their fresh-baked breads and crazy good pastries, Our Daily Bread is a great stop whether you're in the mood for a whole meal or just a little...  Read More



Looking for a place to grab a gluten-free beer and a brat in Santa Barbara? Look no further than the Hoffman Brat Haus located right downtown in the Paseo Nuevo mall. They serve up over 20 kinds of sausages - ranging from classic bratwursts to...  Read More



Lilac Patisserie is a dedicated gluten-free bakery and cafe right in the center of downtown Santa Barbara. Located near some of the best shopping on State Street, this charming stop is the perfect place to grab a latte and a cookie - or a slice...  Read More


Meet Geneva Ives

Geneva Ives moved to Santa Barbara in 2000 on a whim (ok, and to go to college) and never looked back. She loves Santa Barbara because it’s really one of America’s greatest small towns - it...  More About Geneva