The first and only time I visited North Carolina was many moons ago. I was 17 years old and I spent a few days there. I used to be pretty much the biggest Dawson’s Creek fan ever (embarrassing but true. It was filmed in Wilmington, NC) and it’s also an absolutely beautiful place. I look forward to going back at some point and now I know where to eat safely.
A big thank you to fellow gluten free-er Jenni from Spoonful at a time for this wonderful guest post detailing the gluten free goodies which Raleigh, North Carolina has to offer! Jenni has been strictly gluten free since the beginning of 2011 and lives a healthy, balanced gluten free lifestyle in Raleigh. If you are gluten free and headed to Raleigh it sounds like there are quite a few places to check out. I definitely plan to eat at Remedy Diner and Sitti the next time I find myself there!
The Raleigh, NC area dining scene has a lot to offer to the gluten-free community. Like many cities we’ve got the usual big chains with great GF menus – Outback and P.F. Chang’s are my favorites – but there are also a lot of lesser-known places that proudly serve amazing gluten-free food, from casual lunch spots to fine dining.
The Remedy Diner is a funky little place in downtown Raleigh that features lots of vegan and gluten-free choices. They have a variety of amazing sandwiches, and you can get them on gluten-free bread for no additional charge. I recommend the Turkey Pesto sandwich – thinly sliced turkey with homemade pesto, applewood bacon, avocado, lettuce and tomato. The bacon is absolutely amazing! The gluten free bread is a white rice flour bread from a local bakery, perfectly toasted and not at all dry or crumbly. They are open for lunch, dinner and late night.
Right down the street from Remedy is another favorite of mine, Sitti. It’s the first gluten free restaurant I went to in Raleigh, and I’ve been back many times – it’s a great place for date night or a girls’ night out. They offer authentic Lebanese cuisine, and their many gluten-free options are clearly labeled on their menu. I like to order a bunch of things from the mezze sections (small plates) and share everything among the table . The halloumi with dates is not to be missed!
We have several places that offer gluten-free pizza, but Z Pizza is the best I’ve tried. They have a great downtown restaurant with a patio and live music on Friday nights, plus locations in Cary and north Raleigh. Their gluten free crust is fantastic – perfectly crispy on the bottom, with just the right amount of chew. They use top-quality organic sauce and toppings, and there are lots of fun creations on the menu safe for celiacs, like the ZBQ pizza. Unlike some other pizza places, Z Pizza takes extra precautions to keep your pie safe – not only is it cooked in a special pan in the oven, they also prep it in the walk-in freezer to keep contamination from happening at the assembly level.
If it’s a sweet treat you’re after, head over to Sweetfrog for a frozen yogurt fix – they’ve got locations throughout the state, including Raleigh and Cary. It’s a great little place with lots of gluten-free premium frozen yogurt choices and toppings. Beware, the toppings section was a little scary in terms of cross contamination if you wanted anything from the candy section – however they group together the fresh fruit and it’s a bit separate from the rest so I felt safe sticking with that. I like the sweet coconut yogurt with fresh pineapple and kiwi, it’s the perfect refreshing summer treat!
Those are my current favorites, but there are also lots of other places on my wish list that I am eager to try. Here are some recommendations from my local gluten-free friends!
Sawasdee – this was actually my favorite Thai restaurant before I had to go gluten free and I just recently learned that they have a GF menu, I’m eager to go back!
Spize Café – a downtown restaurant serving street-style Thai food for lunch Monday-Saturday. They offer gluten-free rice plates, summer rolls and salads.
Sunflowers Café – a sandwich place in the Peace College area that offers gluten-free bread.
Zen Cat Bakery – I have been eager to try the gluten-free treats from Zen Cat Bakery ever since reading about them on Gluten Hates Me, but their stuff is only in Greensboro and Durham and I haven’t been over that way recently. Sounds like it would be worth the trip though!
Do you live in Raleigh or have you travelled there? What are your favourite celiac friendly go-to spots?