Gone are the days of sad, boring gluten-free food. That being said, sometimes it can feel like following a gluten-free diet when eating out requires a bit of detective work, so you don’t end up eating a piece of cardboard that's being passed off as pizza. Luckily, more and more restaurants are making sure they cater for the gluten-free amongst us and understand that for many, a gluten-free diet is not a mere preference but a medical necessity.
These days, the Gold Coast is home to several stellar eateries that accommodate different diets with food just as delicious (or more!) as the next restaurant. For our diet-restricted gang, here are all our favourite gluten-free friendly restaurants on the Gold Coast.
This little Miami establishment packs a punch with its plant-based, gluten-free and whole foods menu, earning its status as one of the best restaurants on the Gold Coast. The Greenhouse Canteen also boasts a delicious cocktail menu, as well as Australian wines and beers from local breweries. There are plenty of ever-changing specials ensure a fresh experience each time, so don’t be afraid to try whatever they throw at you - these guys know how to work the gluten-free magic and the end results are seriously mouthwatering!
Located in the middle of the village-like Tugun shopping strip, Sticky Rice Tugun has made a name for itself as a prime dining spot on the Southern end of the GC. Serving authentic Thai food and epic cocktails in their leafy upstairs dining room, the atmosphere is just the right balance of refined dining and cool tropical vibes. If you’ve been looking for gluten-free food with a bit of a kick, you’ll love this place, because the dishes at Sticky Rice deliver the goods on the flavour front, gluten-free options included.
Gold Coast Gluten-Free Bakery
If you’ve been looking for somewhere to enjoy a classic pie or sausage roll sans gluten, this is your spot. Located in Nerang, the Gold Coast Gluten-Free Bakery is a treasure trove for baked goods to suit gluten-free diets. What’s more, you can buy their goods at heaps of Farmer’s Markets around the GC too - check their socials for all the latest details.
Good news, fam! We no longer have to miss out on the wheaty delights that make up much of classic Italian cuisine. Balboa Italian in Palm Beach delivers the goods for gluten-free Italian dining on the Gold Coast, with a fresh take on all our beloved favourites. Almost everything on the menu can be made gluten-free upon request, from pizza and pasta to focaccia and more, and vegan cheese is available, too!
Marie Anita’s Bakery
Marie Anita’s is a completely gluten-free cafe and artisan bakery, so go nuts and live your wildest baked goods dreams! This charming and rustic little Mermaid Beach joint has become a staple for gluten-free Gold Coasters, thanks to their incredibly wide range of yummy artisan bread, cakes and pastries. The team at Marie Anita’s know how to work that flour magic, so prepare to lift your standards on gluten-free baked goods.
Arguably home to the Gold Coast’s most extra acai bowl, the Cardamom Pod is a fully vegetarian health food cafe, as well as a gluten-free haven. This local gem is located right in the heart of Broadbeach, serving nutritious foods that cater to all dietary requirements. The incredibly tasty dishes are a treat to the eyes (the garnishing is seriously on point), so get your phone out for some great food 'Grams. The atmosphere is super cosy with colourful knickknacks that create that homey vibe, and rustic tables that offer both indoor and outdoor seating.
BSKT, a stone’s throw from the sands of Nobby Beach, is another unmissable health food cafe on the Gold Coast for gluten-free brunching or lunching goodness. The menu is abundant with gluten-free, vegan and dairy-free goods to die for, and the coffee is up to scratch as well. It’s not just the food that we love, though. The bright and airy space is filled with leafy plants, and the large windows open out to the hustle and bustle on the street outside. BSKT is always popping on the weekends, but luckily there’s heaps of seating out the back too.
Red Hot Cod
Sometimes you just crave a good ol’ fish and chips, but it can be hard to find one with gluten-free batter. Fear not, your search has come to an end: Red Hot Cod in the heart of the Burleigh Heads foodie hub is not just any old fish and chips shop, their menu is seriously as fresh as it gets. Fish and chips can be made gluten-free upon request, and if you’re looking for something healthy, the poke bowls are some of the best on the coast.
This West Burleigh restaurant is a hidden gem if there ever was one, tucked away near the greenery of Tallebudgera Creek. The simple interiors at Wazen ring true to the traditional Japanese dining experience, and the flavours are as fresh and authentic as it gets. Best of all, the extensive gluten-free menu means it’s easy to enjoy a feast without the annoyance of feeling limited in your choices.
A Palm Beach local treasure, Frida Sol is mainly known for its chic, Frida Kahlo-themed interiors and glorious cactuses, but it also boasts an extensive menu of gluten-free Mexican food. There’s more to love with a massive beach-facing balcony that offers cooling breezes, best enjoyed with a margarita in hand, of course. Come for the yummy Mexican gluten-free options, stay for the vibes!
Vietnamese cuisine with a modern touch and an Australian twist, Jimmy Wah’s brings a welcome addition to the Gold Coast gluten-free friendly food scene. This cool little eatery combines a minimalist look with edgy touches, and a large window opening out to the hustle and bustle of Burleigh. Jimmy Wah’s has some unmissable treats on the menu, including gluten-free crispy spring rolls and gluten-free tempura oysters. Round up your wheat-sensitive mates and make a night out of it, because the menu is great for sharing, and the Instagram-famous cocktails are top-notch too!
I like ramen
These guys may be best known for their plant-based ramen magic (seriously, the plant-based “duck” is out of this world), but their slurp-worthy menu is filled with gluten-free options too. A ramen restaurant and Japanese whisky bar, I like ramen has become an iconic institution for all dietarily restricted Gold Coasters. To be fair, it’s just an all-around great restaurant with a super innovative menu and a cool urban vibe to go with it, so what’s not to love?
Ate your way through the best gluten-free eats? Hit up our fave vegetarian restaurants next.
Image credit: Hayley Williamson