Best Gluten-Free Menu Items That Are Normally Off Limits (Pizza, Pasta and More!)
On August 2, the Food and Drug Administration finally decided to define the term "gluten free." Up until then, manufacturers had been able to slap the label on anything that they felt was gluten free enough. How much gluten to include in gluten-free products was completely up to the discretion of the individual companies.
Photo by Ongjulian
Not anymore though! Now, according to the FDA, products labeled gluten free will have to contain less than 20 parts per million of gluten. This amount is recognized by the medical community as low enough that it won't make people suffering from Celiac disease ill.
Because more and more people are being diagnosed with Celiac disease or other gluten intolerances (my mom swears it makes her joints hurt), many restaurants are also accommodating the gluten free public. We've compiled a few lists in the past of the best local joints offering gluten free menus or a number of gluten free items. They could probably use an update, as they were written in 2011 and 2012, but today's list is all about specific menu items.
Where's the best gluten-free burger (bun) in town? How 'bout gluten free pasta or pizza? We've got a round up of all that and more!
Best Gluten-Free Pizza
Photo by Jane Catherine Collins
Pink's Pizza makes Neapolitan-style pizza in four locations across Houston, and all four offer gluten-free crust. It's not made in-house like the rest of Pink's dough, but it's pretty tasty for something that's gluten free. It's not dry or flaky like some gluten-free pizza crust. It has a nice chewy firmness to it, and it can hold up against some of the awesome toppings Pink's piles on its pizzas. Unfortunately, the gluten-free crust is only available in the 12-inch size, and it's an extra $4. I recommend the Luigi, which has Canadian bacon, gorgonzola, mozzarella, portabella mushrooms, sundried tomatoes, apples and roasted garlic with a pesto sauce. Heck, even if the gluten-free crust wasn't that good, you wouldn't know it with all of that deliciousness on top of it.
Best Gluten-Free Burger
Photo from Guru Burgers and Crepes
Obviously burger patties are, by nature, gluten free. I'm talking about the buns. Guru Burgers and Crepes offers buns sans gluten, so folks with an intolerance can enjoy a good burger with a fluffy, toasted bun just like everybody else. The patties are great too; Guru uses only Akaushi beef and has a number of topping options that run the gamut from simple and standard to peanut butter and bananas. Guru also has salmon and lamb burgers (that can be topped with gluten-free buns, of course) as well as gluten-free crepe batter for a yummy dessert. Note: They may be delicious for folks with Celiac disease, but neither the burgers nor the crepes are guilt free.
Best Gluten-Free Fried Chicken
Photo by Kanko
Every Tuesday, Pondicheri offers fried chicken marinated in a spicy yogurt masala then rolled in chickpea flour and fried. The chickpea flour makes it both gluten free and Indian-inspired, so this fried chicken is extra special. It's served with curried fingerling potatoes and arugula and blueberry salad, and $25 will get you enough to feed two. It's so good, you won't even realize you're skipping out on the gluten that usually coats fried chicken. In fact, you may never fry chicken in anything other than chickpea flour again.
1600 Westheimer, Houston, TX