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10Best spots for gluten free munching in New Orleans



New Orleans food culture can be all about the gluten, from flour-thickened gumbo roux to flour battered fried chicken and sandwiches like po-boys and muffulettas. But restaurant folks are increasingly catering to eaters with special requests, and eating gluten-free isn't difficult with a little bit of forethought. 

In the following list, some places actually offer separate gluten-free menus. These menus still offer appetizers, entrees, desserts, just without the gluten.

Other spots offer recommendation menus. These menus will guide you through how to order off the regular menu to make sure your food comes out exactly the way you want. This includes instructions on what to tell your server, including the appropriate substitutions to make.

Globally inspired restaurants, from Mexican to Thai and Vietnamese, are ideal spots to avoid bread and pasta.  Rice and corn-centric cuisines deliver lots of flavor without a hint of flour.

Just because you are trying to, or have to eat gluten-free doesn't mean you can't enjoy all the wonderful food New Orleans has to offer. Even the upper crust Creole palaces like Galatoire's, Broussard's and Arnaud's will happily help you choose items from the regular menu that adapt to your needs. Heck, all of Casamento's fried seafood is gluten-free!


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Theo's is a go-to pizza place with a slew of locations throughout the city and across the lake. The local chain offers the option of gluten-free pizza along with fresh salads and specialty items. Two popular locations are uptown on Magazine and in Mid-City. PBR flows cheap here, televisions are available for sports viewing, and waiting for a seat is a rarity. The pizza errs more on the side of thin crust, with an excellent cheese to sauce ratio and a solid mix of red and white pies. The chalkboard sign out front will alert guests to daily specials, and the beer is a great value when you're ordering lunch or dinner.

Recommended for Restaurants with Gluten-Free Menus because: Who says you can't have your cheesy saucy pizza and still be gluten-free?

Beth's expert tip: For an extra $4.50 your 10-inch pie arrives on a gluten-free crust.

Read more about Theo's →


Sushi Village


Sushi Village in Metairie may look like non descript from the outside, thanks to its shopping center location, but don't let that deter. Inside, the restaurant offers fresh sushi, sashimi and specialty entrees in a sleek, comfy setting. Diners who avoid gluten have plenty of options here, with its rice-centric menu and host of specialty rolls stuffed with everything from tuna and salmon to avocado and show crab. The staff is friendly and helpful, so if in doubt just ask. The lunch special, which includes two or three regular rolls along with miso soup or a house salad, is a great deal for around $10.

Recommended for Restaurants with Gluten-Free Menus because: Just about everything at Sushi Village is gluten-free, but the waitstaff is very knowledgeable and can guide you through the options.

Beth's expert tip: Try one of the specialty rolls, like Fire Mountain, with salmon, tuna, yellowtail and avocado or the Sexy roll filled with boiled shrimp and snow crab.

Read more about Sushi Village →


Sukho Thai - Marigny


Thai hot is only for the very brave at Sukho Thai, a Thai eatery with an emphasis on fresh ingredients. Dishing some of the best Thai cuisine in town, Sukho Thai has locations uptown as well as in the Marigny. in a setting that will soothe and delight. Everything is good, from the pad Thai to curries as fiery as you like and stir-fries perfumed with Thai basil. Service is most accommodating and gluten-free is the order of the day, since flour isn't a common ingredient in Thai cooking. Instead, rice noodles and steamed white and brown rice are options on the side. There's an inventive menu of tropical cocktails and imported beers.

Recommended for Restaurants with Gluten-Free Menus because: Sukho Thai dishes some of the best Thai cuisine in town.

Beth's expert tip: Weekday lunch specials are in the $10 range, a great deal, with options like hot basil stir fry with beef and drunken noodles and red curry.

Read more about Sukho Thai - Marigny →


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Carmo
Photo courtesy of Artz Baglez


Carmo is a breath of fresh air in a city full of rich and decadent food. From its tropical vibe and art gallery setting to its menu of fresh, raw, light and tasty dishes, Carmo delivers on all counts. The first restaurant in Louisiana certified by the Green Restaurant Association, Carmo is an oasis of fresh, local ingredients, with an emphasis on vegetarian and vegan fare, along with sustainable seafood and other options for omnivores. Simply put, Carmo makes healthy delicious. Just ask Woody Harrelson. The notoriously health-conscious actor won't eat anything but raw food from Carmo when he's in town on a shoot.

Recommended for Restaurants with Gluten-Free Menus because: Owners Dana and Christina Honn have created a tropical cafe that caters to diets from vegan to carnivore and gluten-free.

Beth's expert tip: Ask about Carmo's array of tropical juices from Brazil.

Read more about Carmo →


Casamento's Restaurant


A New Orleans tradition for 100 years, this unpretentious neighborhood classic offers seafood fare that's all local, all fresh and all affordable. Casamento's best and most renowned entrees are those that come from the raw bar, but other signature menu items include sandwiches like the fried Oyster Loaf po-boy and gumbo that's sure to satisfy even the most die-hard devotees of Cajun cuisine. Thanks to its spiced cornmeal coating mix, the fried seafood is gluten-free, without a bit of flour in the mix. This is a beer-only joint - outside drinks are not allowed. But there is a gluten-free beer option and it's service in a jelly jar glass.

Recommended for Restaurants with Gluten-Free Menus because: There are oodles of gluten-free options on this seafood-centric menu.

Beth's expert tip: You can indulge in fried seafood at this old school oyster house - no flour is in the mix.

Read more about Casamento's Restaurant →




Juan's Flying Burrito touts itself as the worlds first Creole "taqueria". Two locations on Magazine and S. Carrollton (Mid-City) serve up delicious tacos and burritos made to order. Serving sizes are large and meals come value-priced relative to other city offerings. Always a lively scene, good for twentysomethings and families with kids, a young waitstaff sling drinks, nachos and an early riser favorite, the "Texican" (PBR and shot of good tequila complete with lime). Happy hour is 2-7 pm Monday through Friday and all day Sunday ($1 PBR, $2 Tecate and $5 Margaritas). Juan's offers take-out and does great "family-sized" meals for four-plus people.

Recommended for Restaurants with Gluten-Free Menus because: Corn tortillas sub out for flour for gluten-free guests at Juan's.

Beth's expert tip: Happy Hour lasts all day on Sundays at Juan's, a great option for brunching.

Read more about Juan's Flying Burrito →


Muriel's Jackson Square


Strolling down Decatur, passing by Jackson Square, you will see a lot of familiar chain type restaurants like Bubba Gump and Hard Rock Cafe. Muriel's is one of a few spots in the area that is local, has historical significance and can cook up some savory Creole food. Muriel's offers four different experiences with a courtyard bar, balcony seating, bistro seating and a lounge area known as "the Seance". The BBQ Shrimp and Seafood Bayoubaisse are big hits, as is the Sunday Jazz Brunch. Long catering to glute- free clients, Muriel's executive chef Erik Veney gets creative so you won't miss out on the New Orleans dining experience.

Recommended for Restaurants with Gluten-Free Menus because: Muriel's was an early adopter in the gluten-free category and has offered diners a choice for years.

Beth's expert tip: Ask about the two-course gluten-free lunch menu for $19.95.

Read more about Muriel's Jackson Square →


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French Quarter


While most New Orleans seafood restaurants take a hyper-local approach to fill in the catch of the day, chef-owner Tenney Flynn at GW Fin casts a global net. The French Quarter restaurant impresses with quality and variety, including fish caught in waters around the world as well as right here in the Gulf. Chef de cuisine Michael Nelson's menu changes daily, depending on what's fresh and seasonal, but you might feast on King crab from Alaska, sea scallop Crudo with local caviar and Scottish salmon with jalapeno glaze. The philosophy is simple at this upscale establishment: let the seafood's natural flavors shine. The wine list shimmers with crisp whites guaranteed to enhance your catch of the day. Tenney's new book The Deep End of Flavor, written with former Atlanta Journal-Constitution Food Editor Susan Puckett, makes for a great gift. Ask about a signed copy.

Recommended for Restaurants with Gluten-Free Menus because: GW Fins will provide a gluten-free menu upon request, and can also make most items on their regular menu gluten-free (except for etouffee).

Beth's expert tip: GW Fins provides free 3-hour parking for its guests, so don't worry about trolling the Quarter for a spot.

Read more about GW Fins →


Superior Seafood & Oyster Bar
Photo courtesy of Superior Seafood


Superior Seafood, located on the corner of Napoleon and St. Charles Uptown, is a popular seafood restaurant with a comprehensive gluten-free menu with boatloads of options. Choose from risottos and blackened seafood items, salads, fresh grilled fish and flourless chocolate cake for dessert. Situated right on the St. Charles Avenue streetcar line, Superior has a large bar, full-service oyster bar, climate-controlled patio and private indoor and outdoor dining space. The building was formerly used as a car barn for the New Orleans and Carrollton Railroad Company in the early 1800s. The vast wine list includes more than 300 selections, or order a shot neat from the copious whiskey menu.

Recommended for Restaurants with Gluten-Free Menus because: A popular spot for all kinds of seafood, Superior doesn't leave its gluten-free customers out of the mix.

Beth's expert tip: Raw oysters are just $.50 from 4-6:30 every day of the week.

Read more about Superior Seafood & Oyster Bar →


Fogo de Chao
Photo courtesy of Fogo de Chao New Orleans


Swords, handsome cowboys who can cook, endless amounts of fresh salads and perfectly cooked meat - have you died and gone to heaven? No, welcome to the earthbound reality of Fogo de Chao (say fo-go de shoun), the new-to-New Orleans Brazilian-based churrascaria ensconced in the JW Marriott on Canal Street. Blessed with a gorgeous space, high ceilings and a second-floor balcony with private dining rooms, this Fogo is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner to serve the hotel's guests. Grill artists sear up cuts like filet, top sirloin, beef and pork ribs and lamb chops over a custom-made, 500-degree gas rotisserie. Veggie lovers will be equally happy with the market table with its seasonal greens, salads, smoked salmon, a giant wheel of imported Parmesan and fresh fruit. There's also a feijoada bar featuring rice and Brazil's national black bean and pork stew.

Recommended for Restaurants with Gluten-Free Menus because: A vast array of veg and plenty of grilled meat add up to zero gluten for lunch and dinner.

Beth's expert tip: The $15 lunch is a great deal, including the market table and feijoada, with additional meats priced per cut.

Read more about Fogo de Chao →


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Meet Beth D'Addono

Beth D'Addono is a food and travel writer obsessed with flavor, exploring cultures, street music and the city of New Orleans.

Beth writes about New Orleans and other destinations for outlets...  More About Beth

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