Gluten-Free for Me: Charleston's Top Restaurants for Dietary Restrictions

It's no secret that Charleston is one of the South's leading foodie destinations, stacking up more accolades each year for its talented chefs, one of a kind restaurants, and even its tradition of southern hospitality. Traveling to any city when you're committed to eating gluten free, and many visitors assume that gluten-free menu items are hard to find in a southern city, as southern cuisine is often thought of as mostly fried or barbequed. Not so in Charleston, where the restaurant scene is as diverse as any major city, and plentiful gluten-free dishes are served throughout town.

Gluten-free diners need only to stroll down King Street to find the ideal restaurant for a satisfying gluten-free meal. For breakfast, gluten-free eaters should make a visit to the gourmet grocery, upscale deli and coffee bar-in-one that is Caviar & Bananas. When it comes to finding a midday meal in the Holy City that satisfies all dietary restrictions, the options are plenty: simply take your pick from soup and sandwich combos at Five Loaves Cafe, the rice wraps at Brown Dog Deli, or a couple of slices of gluten-free pizza, (yes, you read that correctly), from Mellow Mushroom.

Selecting a gluten-conscious dinner destination is easy in Charleston! If it's spicy Asian food you're after, visit Basil on Upper King, or venture down the street to Co, a Thai and Vietnamese hybrid offering an entire menu of gluten-free items! For a lighter alternative, stop into Verde, a salad bar with dozens of toppings and dressings.

Bon Banh Mi
Photo courtesy of Bon Banh Mi


This little but enticing local restaurant is located on Spring Street, in one of Charleston's quickest developing culinary neighborhoods. Dubbed a sandwich bar by its owners, Bon Banh Mi lives up to its name, dishing out tasty Vietnamese Banh Mi...  Read More

Caviar & Bananas
Photo courtesy of Caviar & Bananas


Gluten-free diners are in luck! Caviar & Bananas' delicious brunch, lunch, and dinner items are available at two locations, on George Street near the College of Charleston and within the Charleston City Market. This downtown hotspot is...  Read More



Black Bean Company, now with three locations across Charleston and Columbia, has taken up permanent residence in the heart of vegetarians, vegans, and gluten-free eaters. The Black Bean Company regulars will tell you that they keep coming back...  Read More



Whether the craving for pizza strikes you for lunch or dinner, Charleston's Mellow Mushroom on King Street is your ideal destination. Serving up some of the Southeast's most famous pies, with a trademark style that revolves around a "groovy"...  Read More



Basil Thai restaurant, located on Upper King, is wildly popular with both local and visiting Thai food lovers, and is packed with eager diners each night of the week. Basil also serves up a lunch menu of big proportions, an alternatively less...  Read More



Verde is an ideal lunch or dinner destination for vegans and vegetarians, gluten-free eaters, as well as omnivores. Located on busy King Street close to the College of Charleston and Marion Square Park, Verde serves up fresh and healthy salads...  Read More



Tucked into a small but cozy space on beautiful Broad Street downtown, Brown Dog Deli offers classic deli sandwiches alongside an eclectic menu of wraps, salads, and burgers. Omnivore options run from the traditional French Dip to specialty...  Read More



Ask any local for their recommended healthy, gluten-free, and vegetarian-friendly restaurant, and they'll probably send you to Five Loaves downtown. Located on Coming street in a quiet residential area, Five Loaves has been serving a dedicated...  Read More



Dellz Uptown, one of several Dellz family ventures, is a mecca for vegetarians, vegans, gluten-free diners, and health-conscious eaters in Charleston. The restaurant itself is known for its "good vibes," with live music weekly and painted walls...  Read More

Photo courtesy of Co


Co, sharing its name with the word "feast" in Vietnamese, is located on King Street in the heart of downtown Charleston. Like its name implies, Co is an authentic Vietnamese and Thai restaurant, serving up lunch and dinner from 11am to 11pm...  Read More


Meet Clare Sweeney

A South Carolina native and avid locavore, Clare is always venturing between traveling abroad and her beloved Lowcountry. 

Clare works and plays in downtown Charleston, spending her days...  More About Clare