The Place to be if You're Gluten Free
Hello! My name is Abby, and I want to start by saying that I am a huge foodie. I’m living in Chicago for the summer, and I’ve come to realize Chicago has endless food options. For me, not a lot beats exploring and trying out new places. The Magnificent Mile has a surplus of food locations, and although I am not gluten free, it occurred to me that if you are a gluten free eater, you should never have to let your diet determine where you do or don’t go. I felt the need to find the best gluten free restaurants right here on The Magnificent Mile, and here’s what I found.
Welcome to 676 Restaurant, where all food is farm-to-table fresh. At the top of the menu, there’s a list of the farms where 676 receives the food to make their tasty dishes.
Their menu offers many GF options on both of their breakfast and lunch/dinner menus. The 676 chef has his own garden on the 5th floor sundeck of the hotel where he grows and uses his own herbs for the dishes, which helps makes them even more delicious and fresh tasting.
The GF dishes that I tried were eggs benedict and handmade blueberry and maple sausage patties, the perfect savory breakfast. If eggs benedict and sausage isn’t your gig, 676 offers much more than just that for their gluten free breakfast selection. There’s a delicious gluten free French toast, fruit smoothie, veggie benedict, and a wide assortment of cereal, muffins, and pastries that will make any gluten free tummy happy.
As far as lunch and dinner options are concerned, there are many to choose from. A few of the most popular dishes are the 676 Caesar Salad, the Charcuterie selection, and the GF Flatbreads. 676 even offers a GF beer! (Crisp Beer). Not only is 676 able to cater to your gluten free needs, everything is farm-to-table, which is a great added bonus!
Howells and Hood
Howells and Hood claims that it’s very easy to cater to people who prefer GF dishes for two reasons: one being that Executive Chef, Brett Faldstein, has crafted many dishes for the menu with a vast amount of items that are 100% GF – and some of these happen to be the most popular dishes! Reason number two being that it is easy for the restaurant to adjust most dishes that aren’t originally GF. Another bonus about Howells and Hood is that if you’re allergic to gluten or just prefer not to eat it, they always pay very close attention to GF customers, as they have separate frying and cooking stations for all dishes that are made without gluten.
Now, let’s talk food. I started with trying one of the GF appetizers, which was the Melon Burrata (pressed watermelon, whipped burrata, spiced orange, sour apple, and matcha powder). It was so refreshing and delicious, and I never would’ve thought watermelon and burrata could be paired together so well. Next, I tried the Chilean Sea Bass (seared sea bass, plantain gnocchi, cilantro oil, and mango chutney). This dish was very light and fresh – yet surprisingly filling! I also sampled the Spicy Thai Citrus Shrimp (jumbo shrimp, pineapple-coconut bamboo rice, and Thai citrus sauce). This might’ve been my favorite. The fresh shrimp combined with some spice and rice was beyond anything I could describe. Howells and Hood proved to me that eating gluten free can be effortless and absolutely delicious.
Not only does WildFire offer delectable food, they take a gluten free customer’s needs very seriously. When ordering a GF dish, the server rings up an allergy sheet (whether the customer is allergic or not) which then must be approved by several people prior to even making its way to the sterile kitchen to be prepared. Major ‘gluten free’ brownie points for you, WildFire!
WildFire offers an entire GF menu with an extensive amount of options to choose from. Dishes include everything from their famous Chopped Salad, to their gluten free pasta and pizza, and of course their Filet.
I started by trying out their homemade bread - and it was some of the best warm and fluffy bread I’ve ever had. It was a great introduction to the famous Chopped Salad, which was phenomenal. The Chopped Salad comes with delicious croutons; and to make them GF, they’re made with a special ingrediens and are baked instead of fried. Next, I tried some GF pepperoni pizza, and WildFire’s homemade gluten free crust made for the perfect thin crusted slice. I could have easily polished off this entire pizza, but restrained myself from doing so because I knew I had one more dish coming. Lastly, I tried their Flourless Chocolate Cake: I never knew gluten free cake could be such a chocolaty, rich, warm, and perfect dessert.
As you can tell by my giant three-course meal, eating totally GF at WildFire is easy, breezy, and simply delicious. If you’re looking for a place that offers just about anything in a gluten free form, WildFire is guaranteed to exceed your needs.
Hub 51 has about a half a dozen sushi rolls that customers can choose from that are 100% GF. Tuna & Thai Basil and Hamachi & Serrano Chili are just a few of many. Here’s the best part: On weekdays, Hub 51’s sushi is half off at the bar from 3:00pm – 6:00pm!
Most of Hub 51’s most popular dishes happen to be gluten free! The options are endless and simply delicious. A crowd favorite is the Pulled Chicken Nachos. They’re totally gluten free, and have been on Hub 51’s menu since the beginning – definitely a signature dish. While we’re on the Mexican food kick, let’s talk about their tacos. Hub 51 has an array of soft tacos that are griddled corn tortillas fresh to order, served with rice, black beans, and guacamole paired with your choice of fish, filet mignon, braised chicken, or slow-cooked pulled pork. You can also pair all of this yummy food with their GF chips and guacamole!
Not in the mood for Mexican? How about a burger? Hub 51 can make all your GF burger dreams come true by giving it to you ‘bunless’, which means it’ll come ‘lettuce bun’ style. As you can tell, there is no lack of variety at Hub 51. You can’t go wrong with these GF options. No matter what you’re craving, Hub 51 will be able to satisfy you - gluten free style.
You find yourself in ‘the city of pizza’ but can’t seem to find a place to indulge in some gluten free ‘za’… No need to fear, Dolce Italian is here! Their wide variety of delicious pizzas can be made with a GF crust.
In addition to their pizza, Dolce Italian offers many delicious dishes for lunch and dinner options that are gluten free. These include: Grilled Salmon, Seared Halibut, Veal Piccata, Beef Carpaccio (order without croutons), Lamb Chops, and Butter Lettuce Salad – all popular dishes that are 100% GF. Don’t let Italian cuisine get in the way of your gluten free diet.