Top Allergy-Friendly Eateries in Portland
Eating out is hard when you have food allergies, like really hard! So I've created this list for you of places where I can eat, and have had positive experiences. Now of course, you'll still need to let them know about your allergens, and ask the right questions, but all these restaurants offer delicious options to accommodate my family of allergens (no gluten, no dairy, no egg and no soy).
Kim's Restaurant Philosophy: I'm a big believer in only eating out for food I really can't make myself (or takes a huge amount of time and effort), so if the only thing I can eat at a restaurant is steamed broccoli and grilled salmon, I'm sorry, you are not a restaurant I'll spend my money eating at, you have to offer something special.
For Reference: Dedicated means their entire restaurant is free from those allergens.
Please don't be shy to shoot me an e-mail if you have a recommendation of a place I should add to my list to try.
Now onto the important stuff, where to eat out, with kids and food allergies......
Petunia’s Pies and Pastries
Dedicated Gluten-Free & Vegan
**My Personal Favorite** (all my friends know)
Food: The entire restaurant is vegan and gluten-free. It’s been a little harder to find a lot of options that are also soy-free, but there is always something! The staff is very knowledgeable and has a reference sheet on hand to answer any questions about other allergens in their foods.
My Food Recommendation: Their mac n’cheese topped with kale is a perfect lunch option and kid-friendly. I also love pretty much ALL their pastries! Donuts on the weekends, which is a real treat! Their cinnamon rolls are also amazing, and they warm them up for you, which absolutely hits the spot! They also can do custom-order cupcakes and cakes (this definitely was done for my baby showers). Oh and I have to mention that they also offer gluten-free beer, wine and mixed drinks, I don't get down there for drinks nearly enough, but don't worry, I'll offer my recommendations as soon as I can. (Anyone want a night out with me??)
Location: NW Portland Bakery + Cafe and their products are available at New Seasons
Environment: Beautifully decorated cafe with little tables for seating. Parking is a bit of an issue, but they are across the street from a parking garage, which is convenient.
About the Food: Several options of delicious local, natural and organic foods. They have an entire book filled with labels for the foods they serve, and servers are quick to bring it out for you, if you have any questions. Honestly, this brings huge piece of mind!
My Food Recommendation: Buick on a lettuce wrap with fries (fried in rice oil) and a glass of D’s Wicked Cider. For Lucia, we get a kids meal, hot dog (no bun), applesauce or fries and always a free scoop of sorbet.
Location: One location in rural Hillsboro and a beautiful scenic drive out there, perfect stop for bike riders or wine tasters.
Environment: A traditional diner feel with outdoor seating on nice days. Kid-friendly crayons, books and toys on hand as well.
Dedicated Meat-Free, Dairy-Free, Egg-Free & Vegan
About the Food: The entire restaurant is vegan, which to me means EVERYTHING is dairy-free and egg-free. They have a handy matrix on-hand to suggest things that are also gluten-free and soy-free.
My Food Recommendation: I love their plant-based burgers with a gluten-free bun, delicious! Ideally with their sweet potato fries (which are seasonally served). They also carry a “kim-friendly” brownie which is delicious!!
Location: There are two locations in the Portland area, one in downtown Portland, the other in Beaverton. This is also a chain, so they have several locations across the country.
Environment: This is a “fast-food” style restaurant, which is really nice if you don’t have a lot of time but need a good meal.
Dedicated Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free and Soy-Free
About the Food: Paleo, Autoimmune Paleo & Gluten-free. Their goal is nutrient dense foods sourced as locally an organic as possible.
My Food Recommendation: I haven’t eaten here enough to make a recommendation, but I’ll certainly update this once I have one! I know their coconut cake was to die for and they have kombucha on tap!
Location: Restaurant in Kenton
Environment: Nice environment for sitting down and having a meal with a kids corner! This is a MAJOR bonus, they have a chalkboard on the wall with toys for the kids, parents can enjoy their meal while their kids make new friends and play!! They also sell several AIP and Paleo products, which is amazing, I'm all about "one-stop shopping" these days, and eating AIP is so not easy, it's nice they carry some products on hand to alleviate that stressor.
New Cascadia Traditional
Food: Dedicated gluten-free bakery with amazing products, many are vegan and soy-free. I was a little disappointed recently that they won’t do substitutions on their menu, this meant I didn’t have nearly as many options as I was hoping for on their menu.
My Food Recommendation: Bagels, give me all the bagels!! Bagel sandwiches are one of my favorite foods that I miss so much, so when I’m feeling particularly in need I get one of these! Their baguettes are also a favorite of mine, honestly you wouldn't know they are gluten-free and vegan if I didn't tell you.
Location: Restaurant in SE Portland and their products are available at New Seasons and Whole Foods
Environment: Cute little cafe without a lot of seating, but perfect for dropping in for a quick bite.
Food: Vegan, Vegetarian and Gluten-free options available! The servers are knowledgeable about other allergens that may be in the foods.
My Food Recommendation: Vegan Mac n’cheese can be made gluten-free. Thai coconut soup was super yummy! Vegan nachos can be made without soy.
Location: East Portland Restaurant on NE Alberta
Environment: Fun restaurant vibe with plenty of seating in the heart of Alberta. Especially fun in the summer months, as they have a beautiful large window that can be rolled up for a great summer feel.
Back to Eden Bakery
Dedicated Gluten-Free & Vegan
Food: All of the food they serve, and the kitchen it is prepared in, is completely free of gluten, wheat, dairy, eggs and meat. They are a plant-based, vegan and gluten-free bakery. At back to eden, the only other allergen I'd need to check for is soy, so that really simplifies my dining experience, plus more options available!
My Food Recommendation: I have been a huge fan of their donuts, when I used to work on that side of town, my sweet bosses would get me a treat from here to go with everyone else's treats, it always made me feel so special!
Location: Food cart in SE and Restaurants on NE Alberta.
Environment: Small bakery and Desert Bar in the heart of Alberta. Plus they have a food cart (which I seriously need to try).
Food: Fresh Mexican is their style and the entire restaurant is Gluten-Free and all of their menus take a variety of dietary lifestyles into consideration including Vegan, Paleo and Gluten Free. The wait staff is always knowledgeable and helpful in navigating our allergens.
My Food Recommendation: Gringas con Mole is my favorite with kombucha or a margarita. But also a plug for their delicious tortillas, which are of course gluten free, so so yummy and warm, they always serve them warm!
Location: They have three cafes in Portland (Sylvan, Pearl District and Hillsdale) so my bet is you have one not too far from you.
Environment: This really feels like a restaurant, it isn't overly fancy but it is large enough that our whole family can actually fit, 10-14 people. We actually reserved space at the Sylvan location for our Nana's 80th birthday party, and they were able to accommodate a family full of a lot of allergens, which is a consistent problem we run into!
Food: High quality foods offering many Paleo options and able to accommodate most dietary needs.
My Food Recommendation: Well, their burgers are delicious and fries, if you're a meat eater they will not disappoint!! Plus, the fact that I can have a MILKSHAKE there, um yes please! Don't worry it's coconut milk, but honestly any restaurant that has multiple desert options for me is a WIN in my book.
Location: They have 2 locations, one in SE Portland and the other in NW Portland. I'm a fan of the NW one, it's in the heart of NW 23rd area, which is one of my favorite spots in Portland.
Environment: Traditional diner feel, with a hip ambiance and it opens up in the summer time (NW location) for a breeze.
Corbett Fish House
Food: I'm a HUGE seafood fan and fish and chips is something I hadn't had in YEARS, like 10 years and this place is a hidden gem!! We drive way out of our way to stop here for a traditional greasy (in a good way) fish and chips dish!!! Because it is not only gluten-free breaded fish but also egg-free, which is not easy to find in restaurants!!
My Food Recommendation: At a restaurant like this honestly the simple is such a treat, I'm all about the Alaskan Pacific Cod fish and chips dish, plus a beer. I'm not much of a beer drinker myself, but my hubby swears by the Ground Breaker Gluten-Free beer, it's the best gluten-free beer we have found, and he's tried them all! They are also a local Portland brewery, but I haven't visited them yet in person, they are on my list!
Location: There are 3 locations, Corbett and Hawthorne in the Portland area, then Vancouver, Washington (just 30 minutes away-ish from Portland).
Environment: Corbett is the one I've been to, it's a traditional pub environment, not a lot of seating so sometimes needing to wait on a table if you have a large party, but it's worth the wait.
About the Food: I love love love Chipotle! It is definitely one of my "fast-food" options, but actually quite healthy. They offer an allergy matrix to help you determine which options are best for you with your allergens.
My Food Recommendation: "Kim's bowl" ha ha, I actually have it saved on my notes on my phone, so when people ask my order, I can easily copy and paste it for them, that's how much we eat Chipotle. Brown rice, black beans, chicken, pico de gallo, corn salsa, guacamole 'yes I know it's extra' and lettuce. Often an extra side of chips and guac as well.
Location: This is a national chain that I have been enjoying for more than 10 years, I remember hitting up Chipotle during my night classes at Portland State University.
Environment: Definitely a 'to-go' environment that honestly I wouldn't trade for the world. It's chic and modern, but you know you go in and get high quality healthy foods.
About the Food: Pizza and ice cream is their slogan and wow they did not disappoint. Everything they make is plant based, so vegan and no meats. For the pizzas there was a gluten-free crust option, which yes costs a couple dollars extra but delicious! The staff was knowledgeable, friendly and very accommodating to our requests!
My Food Recommendation: We ordered 3 pizzas and 3 waffle cones with ice cream!
First of all, we got the Margherita Pizza for my daughter, and we swapped out the tomato sauce for their white sauce (bianca), because she’s sensitive to tomatoes and it was delicious! We also added kalamata olives. The Superfunghi and Ultraviolet were also amazing, we also opted for the bianca sauce on those as well. The bianca sauce they explained is a cauliflower and garlic sauce, seriously so good!
My fave pizza was the Superfunghi which we added artichoke hearts and kalamata olives to!
They also had several kombucha flavors on tap, so we got the Happy Mountain Kombucha, the flavor was a lavendar. I prefer sweeter kombucha so this one tasted a bit more fermented than I like.
We had no idea how we would feel after all that pizzas, so we waited to order ice cream. But as soon as we discovered that they had gluten-free + soy-free and vegan waffle cones we had to get to sampling! We did Bourbon Vanilla on a waffle cone, which was amazing! It was a really nice creamy ice cream, with a cashew and coconut milk base! Then also we had Rocky Road on a waffle cone, which has soy in it, so I didn’t get to sample that one, but my family loved it!
My personal fave was the peanut butter cookie (yes it’s gf) on a waffle cone, so much yum!
Location: There are 3 locations in Canada and 1 in Portland! We will definitely be back!
Environment: Cute urban chic modern dinner feel. I was a bit disappointed there wasn’t a kids menu or even kid size options, but honestly my kids eat so much variety, it wasn’t an issue for our family, but I’m used to having that option.
*Not recommended for anyone with severe food allergies or celiac disease*
About the Food: Think Chipotle for pizza! They have a fix your own style set-up, which is so convenient.
My Food Recommendation: The gluten-free pizza crust does not have dairy or egg in it, but the new cauliflower pizza crust does have egg in it. So we opted for the gluten-free pizza crust. We have eaten here several times and unfortunately more recently I have started to notice myself not feeling well afterwards. I think the main culprit is that they don’t have dedicated trays for the gluten-free pizza, so they use the same trays for both glutenous and gluten-free. They use the same open fire wood oven, which I don’t think would be an issue for me if they had dedicated trays and a dedicated tool to take the pizzas in and out of the oven.
They did a great job of pulling ingredients from under-neath for me, so there wasn’t any cross contamination on the line, they changed their gloves.
I’m honestly super sad to write this review, because the first few times I ate there, I felt fine and was just so excited to find a pizza place that could accommodate me and my family!
Location: There are so many locations in the USA! Go here to find one near you.
Environment: Cute urban chic modern fast food restaurant feel. Nice environment to sit quickly and eat with your family.
Food: The entire restaurant is vegan. They offer several gluten-free options as well and label most of their items with extra allergens, like nuts and soy.
My Food Recommendation: I haven’t eaten here enough to make recommendations, but everything I have tried has been delicious. I’m looking forward to updating this section as I eat here more, but I really wanted to get the word out!
Location: 4725 SW Lombard Ave # 108, Beaverton, OR 97005
Walkable to the Beaverton library and farmer’s markets, make an outing of it.
Environment: As a girl who grew up deeply rooted in my Swedish culture, I actually discovered this bakery at the annual Scan Fair (Scandinavian Christmas Bazaar) which my grandfather took me and my family to yearly as a child, and has such a special place in my heart. Carina’s has a clear Scandinavian flare into her decor and food offerings, this is so nostalgic and special for me.
Extra Special Notes: Carina the owner is visually impaired and she has a guide dog who is with her in the bakery as her guide dog/therapy dog, they even had a kennel built into the counter (totally up to code and hygenic). She also employs other people who are visually impaired, and to me this is just beautiful. She has taken her impariment and found a way to turn it into something beautiful and way to raise awareness. Supporting her local business helps support people with disabilities. You may not think about this much in your life, but we do a lot, we have several people close to use who have a disability of some kind and supporting the cause in any way possible, is incredibly powerful!
**This blog post will be updated as I try more eateries.**
Places that have been recommended to me and I have yet to try:
Some of these places I have had their products, but have yet to visit their storefront in person.
Eat at your own risk.
Ground Breaker Gastropub
La Vida Veggie
Sweet Lemon Vegan Bistro
Sweat Pea Baking
Gluten Free Gem
Kyra’s Bake Shop
Ed & Bean