As a celiac and mother of a child with celiac disease, Chick-fil-A is one of our go-to, fast-food restaurants. It is one of a handful of fast-food chains with gluten-free options that we trust.
With restaurant locations throughout the US, it is easy to find a nearby Chick-fil-A whether at home or on the road. Having a reliable list of chain restaurants streamlines road trip planning when you or a loved one has celiac disease or gluten intolerance. Chick-fil-A definitely makes this list.
This chain offers a wide selection of items without gluten. Although Chick-fil-A discloses that there is a risk of cross-contamination due to a shared kitchen, its restaurants have excellent protocols to prevent cross-contact:
- Cashiers note “gluten-allergy” on the ticket and notify kitchen staff verbally.
- Cooks change gloves and clean surfaces.
- There is a separate fryer for waffle fries. (Yay!)
- Grilled chicken and grilled chicken nuggets are prepared separately from the fried chicken.
- Your certified gluten-free bun (for a gluten-free grilled chicken sandwich) is served to you still sealed in its package.
Importantly, through these protocols, Chick-fil-A has demonstrated that it values its customers who are on a medically-necessary gluten-free diet.
Always check with the manager at any Chick-fil-A you visit to confirm cross-contamination protocols are in place, the staff is knowledgeable at that location, and the menu items you are ordering are still on the Chick-fil-A issued list of gluten-free options. Airport locations, in particular, may have limited kitchen space for typical cross-contamination protocols resulting in a more limited gluten-free menu.
Breakfast is where Chick-fil-A really stands out. So many of the chains we trust for gluten-free options serve only lunch and dinner, but Chick-fil-A is open for breakfast when you are in a hurry or on the road.
The Chick-fil-A breakfast menu has the following gluten-free items:
- Hash Brown Scramble Bowl w/ grilled chicken filet
- Hash Brown Scramble Bowl w/ sausage
- Bacon slice
- Sausage patty
- Hash browns
- Fruit cup
- Yogurt parfait (without granola)
Another option is to order from the lunch/dinner menu at breakfast time. Chick-fil-A makes these items available all day, but they will take an extra 15-20 minutes to prepare during breakfast service.
Important note about the granola served with the yogurt parfait: while oats are inherently gluten-free, 90% of oats are cross-contaminated with gluten-containing grains in the field, or during transporting, processing and shipping. Chick-fil-A does not use gluten-free oats in its granola, so the Harvest granola package that comes with the yogurt parfait is not celiac safe. If you really want a little crunch in your parfait, you could bring a portion of gluten-free granola from home.
Chick-fil-A offers a number of gluten-free menu items for lunch and dinner:
- Grilled Chicken Sandwich (order gluten-free bun)
- Grilled Nuggets
- Entree Salads:
- Market Salad (without toppings)
- Cobb Salad w/ Grilled Nuggets, Grilled Filet (without toppings)
- Spicy Southwest Salad w/ Grilled Nuggets, Grilled Fillet (without toppings)
There is so much to love about this lunch menu. My favorite is the grilled market salad, which I order with no blue cheese (preference), and the Zesty Apple Cider Vinaigrette (gluten-free). My husband typically gets the Cobb Salad with grilled nuggets.
Miss E can’t pick a favorite and usually orders either the grilled nuggets or the grilled chicken sandwich (on a gluten-free bun). The grilled chicken sandwich comes disassembled, and the gluten-free bun is served in a separate package (the way it comes from the factory) to prevent cross-contamination in the kitchen.
Chick-fil-A’s gluten-free bun is enriched with vitamins and minerals, made with ancient grains quinoa and amaranth, instead of rice flour, and sweetened with molasses and raisins.
The regular breaded and spicy chicken options are not gluten-free.
The grilled chicken sandwich and grilled nuggets come with a choice of one of the following gluten-free sides, or you can order them a la carte:
- Waffle Potato Fries
- Waffle Potato Chips (pre-packaged)
- Side Salad (without toppings)
- Kale Crunch Side
- Fruit Cup
- Greek Yogurt Parfait (without toppings)
French fries in a dedicated fryer are a rarity, so for folks with celiac disease, the gluten-free Chick-fil-A waffle fries are the big win here! My daughter orders them every time.
As noted above, the oats that are served with the greek yogurt parfait are not gluten-free. They are packaged separately, so easily excluded from your meal.
There is only one menu item for a gluten-free kids’ meal: 5-count grilled nuggets. But your kiddo can have a choice of beverage and the following sides:
- Waffle Potato Fries
- Waffle Potato Chips (pre-packaged)
- Apple Sauce (pre-packaged)
- Fruit Cup
The best part of the kids’ meal is the surprise. Choose from one of two prizes (ages 3 & under or ages 4 & up) or an Icedream Cup!
Chick-fil-A says that the following dressings are gluten-free, which currently happen to be ALL of its salad dressings:
- Avocado Lime Ranch Dressing
- Creamy Salsa Dressing
- Fat-Free Honey Mustard Dressing
- Garden Herb Ranch Dressing
- Light Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Light Italian Dressing
- Zesty Apple Cider Vinaigrette
Gluten-Free Dipping Sauces:
- Barbeque Sauce
- Chick-fil-A® Sauce
- Honey Mustard Sauce
- Honey Roasted BBQ Sauce
- Polynesian Sauce
- Zesty Buffalo Sauce
The dipping sauces are so in demand that Chick-fil-A started selling them in large containers. I only know this because my son is a huge fan of Chick-fil-A sauce. Lovers of the popular Polynesian sauce and Chick-fil-A sauce will be thrilled to know that they made the gluten-free list.
The only two dipping sauces missing from the gluten-free list are the Garden Herb Ranch Sauce and Siracha Sauce. The latter contains wheat.
- Icedream (in a cup)
- Yogurt Parfait (without granola)
- Frosted Lemonade
Yogurt Parfait is not on Chick-fil-A’s list of treats, but it’s on mine! Even better, combine the fruit cup and Icedream for an upgraded ice cream treat!
Sample Menu Combinations
- Grilled chicken sandwich, waffle fries, lemonade
- Grilled nuggets with Chick-fil-A sauce, side salad, soda
- Market salad, water, yogurt parfait for dessert
- Hash brown scramble bowl w/ sausage, fruit cup, coffee
- Kids’ nuggets with barbeque sauce, milk, fruit cup, icedream (combine fruit cup and icedream for dessert)
Here are answers to Gluten-Free Chick-fil-A Frequently Asked Questions:
My family has been enjoying Chick-fil-A since before Miss E and I were diagnosed with celiac disease. You can read the story of my diagnosis here. In the hazy, early days of a celiac diagnosis, it was such a joy and relief to find out that we could continue eating at Chick-fil-A! If this guide gives you and your family the same enjoyment, it will have been my pleasure.