True Food Kitchen gluten-free seasonal harvest salad with greens, golden beets, and goat cheese.

Gluten-Free at True Food Kitchen (2023)

True Food Kitchen is one of my go-to restaurants for truly amazing gluten-free food!

The flavor-forward menu is focused on seasonal and sustainable nutrient-rich ingredients. Special nets, like vegetarian and vegan, are well accommodated. And gluten-free options abound.

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Cross-Contamination

White pan-seared fish on to of a bed of rice and pesto sauce. Garnished with fresh herbs and cherry tomatoes.

True Food Kitchen offers the usual disclaimer that although it takes precautions to avoid cross-contact, it is not a gluten-free kitchen.

I get it. Unless a restaurant is dedicated gluten-free, you can expect to find that notice on menus and websites.

That said, True Food Kitchen takes it a step further with this lovely statement, “When it comes to being an allergy-friendly restaurant, we want every guest to feel comfortable at our table. We take ingredient allergies and sensitivities seriously and our team is committed to protecting your health.”

This kind of language on a restaurant website communicates it is willing and intentional about serving the gluten-free community.

There is room for those of us with celiac disease or gluten intolerance at the True Food Kitchen table. đź’•

Over the years, I’ve frequented True Food Kitchen for family meals, business dinners, and girls’ nights out. I’ve ordered more True Food Kitchen via DoorDash than I care to admit when our home was being remodeled, and have catered holiday parties with its undetectably gluten-free dishes. My daughter and I both have celiac disease and have been glutened by TFK exactly zero times.

While not a dedicated gluten-free restaurant, True Food Kitchen has excellent protocols and training to reduce the risk of cross-contamination for guests with food allergies and dietary restrictions.

Here’s True Food Kitchen’s allergy commitment to you:

  • The server alerts the kitchen team.
  • The kitchen team takes steps to avoid gluten cross-contact.
  • The manager or chef verifies your meal has been prepared correctly.
  • Your meal is served to you by a manager or team leader.

Always ask questions and use your judgment regarding each local restaurant’s allergy protocols and even the crew’s expertise on a particular evening.

Gluten-Free Menu Items

Because the extensive menu changes seasonally, the current in-restaurant or online menu is the most accurate source of up-to-date gluten-free offerings.

You’ll find the menu is packed with “gf” options noted next to menu items. At True Food Kitchen, gf stands for “Gluten-friendly”… not my favorite term, but every restaurant chain hires lawyers.

Modifications: If you see something you want that doesn’t have “gf” next to it, ask if it can be safely modified. It often can!

Here is just a sampling of the wide variety of “gluten-friendly” menu options by category:

Starters: butternut squash soup, roasted Brussels sprouts, charred cauliflower. Herb hummus and edamame guacamole are gluten-free if you substitute gluten-free pita.

Salads: Seasonal harvest salad changes seasonally (thus the name) and is usually gluten-free, look for the gf symbol on the menu. The Tuscan kale salad is gluten-free when you ask for no breadcrumbs.

Pizzas (must request gluten-free pizza crust): roasted butternut squash pizza, chicken sausage pizza, Margherita pizza.

Bowls: spicy panang curry, teriyaki quinoa bowl, Korean noodle bowl. You can order any of these bowls as a vegetarian dish or add optional proteins: chicken, shrimp, grass-fed steak, or salmon.

Burgers & Sandwiches (must request gluten-free bun): grass-fed burger, turkey burger.

Main Course: pan-seared sea bass, grilled sustainable salmon, lasagna bolognese, wild-caught tuna poke, spaghetti squash casserole, summer tacos, Moroccan chicken.

Sides: herb-roasted fingerling potatoes, kale-jicama slaw, roasted seasonal vegetables, wild rice pilaf.

Kids’ Meals: mozzarella & organic tomato pizza (request gluten-free crust), kids chicken teriyaki bowl, kids grass-fed burger (sub gluten-free bun).

Miss E taking a bit of a gluten-free burger.

Desserts: flourless chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream, chocolate chip cookies, squash pie (similar to pumpkin pie).

Natural Refreshers: the OG, kale-aid, pomegranate limeade, honey lemonade. The beverages are highly seasonal items, so always vet ingredients and alcohol with the bar staff.

Heather’s personal TFK gluten-free favorites: charred cauliflower, Tuscan kale salad without breadcrumbs, chicken sausage pizza on a gluten-free crust, spicy panang curry with chicken, lasagna bolognese, and flourless chocolate cake.

Celiac Tips for True Food Kitchen

  • Communicate your gluten-free needs to your server. I use both the words “allergy” (although inaccurate, it means something to restaurant employees) and “celiac” (to raise awareness).
  • Ask questions about the safe preparation of your specific order. You can always ask to speak to a manager or chef.
  • When your meal is delivered by a manager or team leader, confirm that your food is gluten-free.
  • If you order dessert from the dessert menu (highly recommended!), be sure to remind the server of your gluten-free needs.

Food Delivery Tip! Follow up your online order with a call to a TFK manager to confirm the order is made following allergy protocols.

Need help navigating dining out with celiac disease? Get a free copy of the Celiac Guide to Dining Out.

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    The True Food Kitchen Story

    True Food Kitchen outdoor patio with bright blue and green cozy chairs around a long rectangle fire pit.
    Outdoor Seating

    The menu is based on the anti-inflammatory diet of True Food Kitchen’s founder, Dr. Andrew Weil. It is rooted in Mediterranean, Asian, and Californian cuisine, 3 of my favorites!

    With a frequently updated, seasonal menu, guests can enjoy fresh food at peak flavor.

    Each menu item is followed by a list of real ingredients… good food, for your body and for your taste buds. For example, the Spicy Panang Curry Bowl contains sweet potato, bok choy, rainbow carrots, snap peas, green beans, black rice, and Thai shellfish curry broth. Grilled Sustainable Salmon is served with roasted Brussels sprouts, wild rice pilaf, and pomegranate vinaigrette.

    The restaurant strives to accommodate special diets with vegan offerings, vegetarian options, and “gluten-friendly” choices noted on the menu. Keto and Paleo menus are available online. From plant-based to carnivores, there’s something for everyone.

    For those with celiac disease, gluten intolerance, or another medical reason that requires a gluten-free diet, there is a huge selection of delicious dishes for us. Truly a rarity when it comes to gluten-free dining out.

    To make some of these seasonal recipes in your kitchen, get Dr. Weil’s #1 bestseller cookbook, True Food: Seasonal, Simple, Pure.

    The food blogging world is also full of free True Food copycat and related recipes. Add chopped Medjool dates to this recipe for Tahini Roasted Cauliflower to enjoy the flavors of True Food Kitchen’s charred cauliflower at home. Use gluten-free breadcrumbs when making this easy, copycat Tuscan Kale Salad, and you are well on your way to creating fresh, seasonal, health-conscious fare in your own kitchen.

    This chain started in Arizona and has expanded across the country, giving us gluten-free options wherever we live or roam.

    Currently, there are True Food Kitchen restaurants in dozens of major cities, including Phoenix, Los Angeles, San Diego, Denver, Miami, Tampa, Atlanta, Chicago, New Orleans, Kansas City, MO, Las Vegas, Columbus, Austin, Dallas, and Houston. Look online for a location near you.

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