The hunt for gluten-free food can be a curse on an otherwise great day out.
Thankfully, the range of restaurants now providing inclusive dining options is growing all the time, leading Chris Tapley to pick out some of the best GF friendly restaurants in Edinburgh.
Mamma’s is a firm favourite with Edinburgh’s gluten dodging population, thanks to the amazingly decadent gluten-free pizza they serve up in their cosy restaurant at the heart of the Grassmarket. The quality of the base used is definitely a level above most places, without a hint of the stale cardboard taste of many a gluten-free pizza. As well as a great base, they offer an unrivalled range of toppings including unique options such as chocolate and marshmallows. Pizza is not the only area where Mamma’s excels; their sweet potato fries are perfect and their chocolate fudge brownie dessert is worth saving space for.
Mamma’s also does takeaway and makes it simple; you can order online and they will even deliver alcoholic beverages to go with your meal! Delivery may be convenient, but you really would be missing out on the welcoming spirit and vibrant atmosphere of this wonderful restaurant.
Mamma’s Pizza, 28-30 Grassmarket, Edinburgh, EH1 2JU, 0131 225 6464, more info
— BURGER. (@burgeredinburgh) May 18, 2015
Finding a great gluten-free burger can be tough, but popular local diner Burger lives up to their name and provides something for everyone with high quality GF friendly buns and vegetarian options.The simple name reflects Burger’s approach to their menu; if you’re looking for excessively over-loaded offerings prone to falling apart, this ain’t the place for you. At Burger there’s a focus on quality fresh ingredients cooked to perfection; using this principle and some simple customisation options they provide a host of amazing burgers. There is also a selection of mouth-watering sides such as chilli cheese and curry poutine fries.
This is my favourite spot in the city to grab a quick burger, thanks to it’s casual but welcoming atmosphere. There are now two city centre Burgers; the original Fountainbridge spot and and a second location on Shandwick Place.
Burger, 94a Fountainbridge, Edinburgh, EH3 9QA, 0131 228 5367, more info
Nestled on Cockburn Street, this traditional style diner is the oldest Mexican restaurant in the city; and while it may not look like much from outside, the food is hard to beat. A large portion of their menu is naturally gluten-free, and is all clearly labelled for those with intolerances.
Here you can experience a wide range of Mexican favourites sans gluten, including Tacos, Tostadas and Enchiladas. The owners are committed to providing an authentic taste of Mexico, and all of dishes are bursting with flavour thanks to the use of unique recipes and fresh produce. Viva Mexico also offers incredible bang for your buck with ludicrously generous portion sizes across the menu. Once you try it, you’ll almost certainly be desperate to visit again soon.
Viva Mexico, 41 Cockburn Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1BS, 0131 226 5145, more info
Henderson’s has been an Edinburgh culinary institution since Henderson’s Deli opened all the way back in 1962. They have always focused on catering to vegetarians and have gradually diversified their menu to cater very well for a number of other dietary requirements too. The restaurant is nestled underneath the Deli and benefits from being able to access the freshest of ingredients from upstairs every single day.
The relaxing atmosphere of the restaurant on Hanover Street is one of the major pulls of Henderson’s, but their range of GF food is also mighty impressive. You can have your pick from an extensive range of their specialist salads, and a number of other seasonal main dishes; their cauliflower and chickpea curry is a favourite. In a rare treat, the dessert menu at Henderson’s is also almost entirely GF friendly and almost impossible to resist – their chocolate nut cake would provide a fitting finish to any meal.
Henderson’s, 94 Hanover Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1DR, 0131 225 2131, more info
Wee brownie cakes with choc chilli or rose icing….GF and DLish…. pic.twitter.com/CLoRTzHoeq
— Apiary Restaurant (@apiaryedinburgh) March 29, 2015
Finding somewhere with a touch of class can be difficult when it comes to gluten-free dining, but Apiary in Newington provides a perfect option for a classy but understated meal. Their varied menu changes seasonally to keep up with the very best local ingredients, and there are always a few designated GF options on offer. The staff are generally well clued-up on allergen issues and happy to offer information on which dishes are best suited.
Apiary offers premium food, with creative takes on traditional British dishes, without the premium price tag. Their lunch and pre-theatre menus offer particularly good value, and can be easily altered to cater to those wishing to avoid wheat or gluten. Their range of exotic ice-cream flavours for dessert makes it worth a visit alone. While it may be a little bit out of the centre, you certainly won’t regret taking the time to visit.
Apiary, 33 Newington Road, Edinburgh, EH9 1QR, 0131 668 4999, more info
Main image: Mamma’s Pizzeria