We’re pretty big fans of gluten. But we understand that it’s not for everyone. That’s why we made this list of our favorite places in Seattle to eat gluten-free - from a brewery and a vegan tiki bar to an upscale French spot great for dinner with your parents (no matter how they feel about wheat, barley, and rye). Note that most of these places aren’t fully gluten-free - they just that happen to have good gluten-free options on the menu.
If you’re gluten-free and constantly feel left out when your friends get together to drink beer, welcome to the club. A club known as Ghostfish Brewing Company. This is a gluten-free brewery that makes its beer out of grains like millet, buckwheat, and quinoa, and it’s actually quite good. As a bonus, the taproom also has a fully gluten-free kitchen. You’ll find great day-drinking food like mac and cheese with pork belly confit, ahi tuna street tacos, and a burger with bone marrow aioli on a bun that doesn’t taste like wet cardboard and sadness. Cheers.
100% gluten-free kitchen
If you can’t drink beer but don’t care about it anyway, consider Capitol Cider. It’s a lot like Ghostfish, but with a focus on hard cider, plus a more upscale environment and classier, still 100% gluten-free food. It works well for a big group sharing things like cider-battered fish and chips, lamb ribs, chicory caesar salads, loaded fries with smoked chicken, and even a great creamy mushroom pasta. Keep it in mind as a potential Friday night HQ for board games, hand shuffleboard, and snacks.
100% gluten-free kitchen
Use Bounty Kitchen, a bright and kind of healthy cafe in Queen Anne, for a brunch that’ll make anyone with or without dietary restrictions very happy. The menu has grain bowls, salads, tacos, and sandwiches that are mostly wheatless (and/or can be modified to make the gluten disappear). All of those are tasty and on the lighter side, butit would be a travesty if you didn’t take advantage of the gluten-free griddle cakes with cinnamon butter.
Cafe Flora is an all-vegetarian restaurant, so they know a thing or two about dietary restrictions. There are only three things on the entire menu that are not gluten-free or easily modified that way, which means that fried avocado slices with honey-chipotle aioli, smoked mozzarella pizzas with a crust that doesn’t suck, and cheesy potato tacos are all things you can and should be taking advantage of.
Homer is a Mediterannean spot in beacon Hill that makes most of its dishes inside of a giant oven. The best part is that a ton of the food here doesn’t even have gluten to begin with, like burnt cabbage with stracciatella cheese and peanuts, charred carrots with mustard vinaigrette, or grilled pork with lentils. Even if you want to have some mezzes but don’t feel like eating hummus with a spoon while your friends get to eat hot pita, the crispy basmati cake is a terrific stand-in. Pour the lamb ragu and tahini all over it.
Gluten-free fried chicken is hard to come by, but it does - like true love and VCRs. You’ll find it at Kedai Makan, an excellent Malaysian spot on Capitol Hill. The perfect fried chicken is dredged in tapioca flour and served with rice and a creamy curry sauce. In addition to the chicken, many of the stir fry dishes and appetizers are gluten-free, and you could substitute rice pasta for the mushroom pan mee noodles. The staff is also very accommodating and will happily mark up a menu notating what’s fair game.
This casual Japanese spot in Fremont serves rice bowls topped with raw (and lightly seared) fish, plus some salads and small plates. Its quality ingredients and reasonable price point make it a solid casual lunch or dinner option. The excellent homemade soy sauce is sadly not gluten-free, but they do have separate gluten-free packets you can use.
The amount of dietary restrictions that this burger spot can accommodate is impressive. They have wheatless buns, veggie burgers, fishless sandwiches, vegan and gluten-free corn dogs and desserts, and a substantial list of appetizers that are safe too (like fried brussels sprouts and chimichurri chickpeas). The dark interior could be mistaken for a woodsy diner in Forks, so use Oak for a post-hike lunch, a group dinner in the middle of winter if you’re really missing trees that aren’t evergreens, or after watching the Twilight trilogy.
Ciudad specializes in Middle Eastern dishes, particularly grilled meats (which you order by weight). We like the marinated hanger steak, the harissa chicken, the chimichurri and smoked yogurt sauces for dipping, and mural. This place is ideal for wheat-avoiding carnivores.
Morfire, a Thai hot pot place on Capitol Hill, is a fun spot to get together with a couple of friends to break up the work week. You’ll be safe with most of the broths, sauces, and toppings, and if some people are craving dumplings and wheat noodles, you can ask to split the pot between two different soups to keep one side gluten-free.
Plum is our favorite place to eat upscale vegan food, and a ton of the menu items here are also gluten-free. Come on a blind date when you have no idea what the heck this person eats - a lot of bases are covered with things like the pan-seared creole tempeh, the grilled olive pesto tofu, and the portobello buffalo burger, which you can get on a wheatless bun. If none of that appeals, go for the legendary Cajun “mac and yease” - just get it with gluten-free macaroni. See you there.
This is one of our favorite pho spots in the city. Come here with friends and get set up with a big bowl of the special chicken pho (if that’s not available, get the short rib bowl). Some fresh rolls and fries with cilantro mayo can’t hurt, either. Then, take some pictures in the photo booth to commemorate your delicious meal.
For the best arepas in town, plus Cuban plates piled with braised meats, rice, beans, tostones, and creamy green sauce, try Mojito. It feels like one big party in here - don’t be surprised if the owner comes out with tequila shots for everyone. This place isn’t huge, but it also doesn’t get totally packed, so you should always be able to show up with a group on a Saturday night.
If you’re avoiding gluten, you can pretty much have anything on the Indian/Nepali menu at Kastoori Grill, other than naan and the momo dumplings. Come for a casual weeknight dinner or grab some takeout, and don’t miss the mango soft serve, which is gluten-free, too.
The servers at this Korean steakhouse are pretty attentive to dietary restrictions, and gluten-free people have a lot of great options to choose from. There’s the geoduck fried rice with seaweed, the Chinese broccoli with garlic and walnut pesto, or the best steak in the house: the ribeye with beef belly la lot and spicy peanut oil. Bring your parents or your friends, and share a bunch of dishes family-style.
Manolin is an attractive Fremont spot with creative seafood dishes - like a rockfish ceviche with fried sweet potato strands and avocado - that are pretty much all gluten-free. There’s a steak with chimichurri and creamed yucca on the menu, too, as well as some life-altering black rice with chorizo and squid. If you’re just coming for cocktails, get some hard-to-stop-eating plantain chips at the bar.
The tortilla chips here are fried fresh to order, and your tacos (we recommend the fish and/or al pastor) come on housemade corn tortillas. The braised steak and spicy shrimp plates with rice and beans are also very good things you can do to your stomach. This is a reliably great place for big, tequila-fueled group meals.
This is an Italian spot known for its pasta, but it’s actually pretty easy to have a great gluten-free meal here. Mix and match starters like the carpaccio, the antipasti board, and the chickpea flatbread with tomato confit and cagliata (a cheese that’s like a spreadable burrata). Entree-wise, there’s usually a nice risotto on the menu, as well as a couple of protein/vegetable plates. This is the perfect place to go with your friends who aren’t gluten-free, if you suspect they don’t feel like compromising and skipping gluten themselves.
This Capitol Hill spot serves very good Isan Thai food. The menu notes which items are normally made gluten-free and which can be adapted, and the amazing panang curry chicken stuffed with even more chicken falls into the second category. It’s a big space with lots of wood and metal decor, and ideal for a casual but fun weeknight date, or a pre-bar weekend dinner with friends.
Yes, a huge plate of BBQ is gluten-free - rejoice. Head to Wood Shop for piles of smoked brisket, pulled pork, ribs, and hot links drowned in spicy homemade sauce. Side-wise, get the surprisingly great kale salad, the potato salad, or both. Just know that it gets busy in here - if there’s no space at the bar, don’t give up. Just take your meal to-go.