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22 OF THE BEST SPOTS FOR GLUTEN-FREE EATS IN PORTLAND

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Erinn Scotland

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In the past few years, gluten has gotten a pretty bad rep. We get it. And Portland definitely gets it. Whether you have a gluten intolerance or just read Grain Brain, Portland is a hub for gluten-free eats.

To help you and your gluten-sensitive gang out, we’ve found the best GF spots in the city; from breakfast to dinner to that mid-day treat, check out one of the restaurants below for a tasty meal that won’t result in a stomachache.

Let’s start this post out with a drink. Ground Breaker Brewery on SE 7th Ave. is dedicated to a gluten-free menu, from kitchen to brewery. Grab a GF pale ale with that GF-bunned burger. Want to share a dish? Split their delicious, Painted Hills New York strip steak. Really, this is the perfect place to celebrate a Friday night in SE — Ground Breaker = party-starter.

If you’ve strolled along Alberta around brunch time and seen a line of 10+ people surrounding a tin shed… well, welcome to Tin Shed. One of the most laid-back and popular restaurants in Portland, Tin Shed offers an array of gluten-free meals. Also, doggy dishes. Yup –– bring your pup. A  “Doggy Menu” is available to keep Rosco/Spike/Fido as happy as you are. For human fare, we love to grab their salmon burger on a gluten-free bun. For brunch, order their bloody mary with the bacon. Can’t skip that protein.

Verde Cocina

Restaurant

Verde Cocina is ideal for those who love great food but have issues with gluten cross-contamination. You can rest easy knowing there’s not a trace of gluten in their kitchen or on their menu, which offers vegan and vegetarian dishes as well. They have four locations (The Pearl, Mississippi, Sylvan, and Hillsdale), and serve a mean brunch to boot. But for dinner, we usually choose their Paleo Bowl with the local pork belly bacon — always a win.

DarSalam

Restaurant

Night and day — that’s how we describe the difference from walking out on Alberta into DarSalam. You’ll enter a Middle Eastern restaurant with colorful and fun vibes all around; this place is unlike anywhere else in PDX. The menu is mostly gluten-free (bonus: plenty of vegan options), and has a Shredded Lamb Rice Plate that fills our hearts with joy and bellies with satisfaction. We suggest any of the lamb dishes, to be honest –– they’re cooked to a spicy and unique perfection. They also have a downtown location for all your west side friends.

Deep in NW, this spot will cure your Thai food needs. Sweet Lemon Vegan Bistro’s menu offers plenty of gluten-free options: soups, salads, wraps, noodles. We go crazy for the noodles, and, specifically, you should give the Rama Pad Thai a go. But if a tangier taste is what you’re after, the Noble Noodles are the move. Fitt Tip: trust the cartoon peppers on the menu — their spice isn’t for the faint-of-heart.

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¿Por Qué No?

Restaurant

Por Qué No is one of the most popular Mexican spots in Portland, with eateries on Hawthorne and Mississippi. The hype is due to the bright aesthetic, simple menu, killer happy hour, and addictive chips and guac. 90% of the menu is gluten-free, plus, all the tacos are served on corn tortillas. We keep coming back for the Bryan’s Bowl, margs, and fish tacos. Fitt Tip: our personal opinion? Their beef/steak filling is usually a bit tough. Opt for the fish/veggie tacos instead!

Live music and a slice of ’za? Sounds like a win to us. If you’ve been on Mississippi St. and haven’t visited Mississippi Pizza, odds are you’ve smelled the aroma wafting from their kitchen to the streets. This joint hosts a friendly and lively atmosphere complete with mouth-watering gluten-free pies. Example: The Portland, made with pesto sauce, roasted red pepper, red onion and sheep feta. Got a sensitive friend group? They offer traditional, gluten-free, AND vegan pies –– this place is basically cloud nine for healthy(ish) pizza-lovers.

If a sandwich sounds good but a cookie sounds great, how about a GF cookie sandwich with bourbon hazelnut espresso filling? Yep, Petunia’s Pies & Pastries can give you that. The gluten-free/vegan bakery in downtown SW has mastered settling Portland’s sweet tooth. Too sweet for you? They offer breakfast and lunch options, and their sammies are usually a safe bet. Add in one of their signature cocktails depending on how your afternoon is going.

Love breaded foods, but hate gluten? Try the Corbett Fish House in Corbett, Hawthorne, and just across the border in Vancouver. They’ve mastered breaded dishes, but use a rice flour breading to save the day. (Hurrah for gluten-free fish and chips!) And their 100% gluten-free menu offers all the seafood options we love, like Chile-Fried Catfish tacos, topped with wasabi slaw and chopped tomatoes. Fitt Tip: if you’re a Vikings fan, don’t bother. Corbett’s is a Packers-dedicated spot –– cheese curds proudly made “near Lambeau field”.

You’ve probably heard about this funky, Portland-weird spot in Hawthorne. The waiters will most likely be rockin’ a tattooed arm sleeve or suspenders. The wait will always be about 15 minutes. The drinks, the food, the desserts — all vegan and gluten-free. This place is our heaven. Divulge in guiltless, delicious meals, and don’t leave without trying their Harlow Latte, their Urban Bowl, and their chili. You won’t go wrong with any option, we promise.

On many occasions, people choose salads to be healthy. But when the bowl is loaded with fatty dressings and dried fruit, the nutritious meal quickly becomes indulgent. And who wants to waste their cheat meal on a salad? Not us, but we do love a good bowl of greens. So does Crisp. This North Portland joint offers gluten-free and paleo salads that meet all your expectations: chicken breast dressings, feta, roasted yams, etc. Need help? We love their Emma’s Detox Salad with extra Coconut Bacon.

You know when you’re driving the highway, spot that glittering Portland sign and convince yourself this city couldn’t get any more perfect? Well, that’s when you check out Bang Bang on NE Fremont. They have a Southeast Asian-inspired menu that offers only gluten-, peanut-, and dairy-free products — the perfect continues. We’re obsessed with their curry and late night happy hour. Enjoy dishes (think spring rolls, wings, skewers) for $5 or less until midnight.

If you have a sweet tooth like us, let’s talk about Gluten Free Gem. Don’t you hate eating a GF cupcake that tastes like cardboard? At this bakery, that’s never an issue. Every menu option is made gluten-free and is delicious: chocolate chip cookies, tiramisu, coconut caramel vegan brownies, it goes on. Their location in NE is full of treats you’d say “I’d like two slices, please” to. You can also find these guys at Hollywood Farmers Market every Saturday.

The Matador

Restaurant

If you’re looking for a Mexican spot that has fancier vibes and more options, then Matador is your place. They’re perfect for date night, and have a menu packed full of Mexican-style favorites. They serve mouth-watering fajitas on corn tortillas, and a delicious plate of nachos that could, realistically, feed a group of 10. The restaurant has two locations: SE and NW.

Sungari Pearl serves Asian dishes that pair taste with a healthy conscience. They offer unique GF options, like Sesame Chicken and Seafood & Pineapple Fried Rice. Yes, we’re addicted. And not only do they offer GF and vegan dishes, but use locally-farmed produce and meats raised without hormones. They’re your spot for a chic happy hour next time you’re in NW.

If you’re looking for a classy dinner, chances are you’re already near NW Glisan. So, choose Andina! We love that they’re one of the first restaurants to introduce a GF menu to Portland. Let’s talk your meal: start with the tapas and end with their quinoa-crusted scallops on a spinach and potato puree. You can thank us later. They’re a little pricey, but definitely one of our favorite GF menus.

Teote

Restaurant

Teote, in SE and NE, makes South American cuisine for all appetites. Their famous arepas, made with corn cakes and GF ingredients, are a staple — we love the pork pernil, or keep it simple with the vegetarian black bean. Willing to share? Get the Carne for 3, which includes all the goods: beans, cabbage, fried plantains, cilantro, arepas… yum.

Need that brunch pick-me-up? Waffles, cheesy scrambles, pulled-pork sandwiches — all served gluten-free at Jam. For breakfast, we add Nutella to our waffle or GF toast to the Downtown Scramble. Obviously on Hawthorne, the food is well worth the 15-minute wait during the weekend brunch rush.

An enchilada-lover searching for the ideal gluten-free restaurant? Sounds like a familiar predicament. We found our answer in Iron Horse near Sellwood. Their menu is as impressive as it gets; butternut squash in their enchiladas, corn tortillas, and chips fried in vegetable oil. The restaurant has an amazing Southwest vibe, and they’re perfect for celebrating a birthday, or just to enjoy extra guac.

Eb & Bean

Restaurant

We started with a drink, so let’s end with dessert. This is our favorite place to satisfy our sweet tooth, as Eb & Bean serves delicious GF and vegan frozen yogurt. Their menu is filled with different plant-based and gluten-free yogurt flavors and toppings. It’s celiac heaven. And even if you’re not afflicted, they’ll steal your heart with vegan Nutella yogurt topped with GF/vegan cookie dough crumbles. Get your fix at their two locations on NE Broadway and SE Division St. Fitt Tip: the fro-yo is a bit pricey but tastes super rich, so you’ll need less than you think.

Brought to you by the genius behind Rawdacious Desserts, the teeny Tiny Moreso is vegan and gluten-free heaven offering smoothies, juices, toasts, snacks, and desserts with not a speck of gluten in sight. Our faves would have to be the noodle bowl with tangy almond butter sauce and the Chipotle Yam Chili. And don’t leave this cool NE spot without snapping a bathroom selfie with their iconic ‘Feminist’ sign. For the ‘gram of course!

 

**Updated by Carly Manning, September 2018

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Stay up to date on what’s happening in Portland’s health and fitness scene.

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Fitt

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Stay up to date on what’s happening in Portland’s health and fitness scene.