Due to popular demand, a growing number of restaurants are beginning to offer gluten free menus and menu items. Many fast food chains, however are resisting the trend due to cross-contamination concerns. If you are careful, you can still get a meal free of gluten while eating out. Here is a list of fast food restaurants that do make gluten free items as part of their menu selections.
Wendy’s is the first choice for gluten free fast food for most celiacs and gluten intolerant people. Baked potatoes, chili and Frostys are all gluten free as are their salads without the croutons. If you order french fries, be sure they are fried seperately from other items.
Arby’s also provides a fairly comprehensive menu including most of the meats without the buns and two large salads: the Farmhouse Salads with turkey, ham or roast chicken. Also offered are the chocolate, jamocha swirl, and vanilla shakes. The fries and potato cakes are not gluten free.
Chick-Fil-A is the best of any fast food restaurants for providing a gluten free listed menu. A six page document shows a large variety of options with ingredients listed, making it possible for people with added food allergies or intolerances to determine what is safe for them to eat. They also serve meal-sized salads, two different breakfast choices and their special waffle fries. Here again, it is important to learn if they are fried separately. Yogurt parfaits and Ice Dream dessert cups are also listed as gluten free.
Burgers without buns can be enjoyed here, and fries and tater tots are gluten free. Plain Shakes are supposed to be safe, but there are many toppings and flavor mixes which may not be tolerated.
CHIPOTLE MEXICAN GRILL
Chipotle Mexican Grill makes the claim that everything on its menu except the flour tortillas can be eaten safely by celiacs or those with gluten intolerance. Unfortunately, many of their menu items include flour tortillas.
VERY FEW OR NO GLUTEN FREE ITEMS AVAILABLE:
Here, sadly the only gluten free items are limeade sparklers and a handful of sauces.
KENTUCKY FRIED CHICKEN
Nothing is safe for celiacs here, and no attempt has been made to accomodate them.
McDonald’s does not have a gluten free menu because management insists the logistics of their frequently changing ingredients and suppliers would make the continuous revision and publishing of gluten free item menus too costly. Cross-contamination is also an issue here.
Burger King brought out its gluten sensitive list recently, but readers find it hard to determine just what menu items are actually gluten free. It might be possible to get a bun free meat sandwich, but most of the menu items are not safe for celiacs due to cross-contamination.