Rebecca's Gluten Free Blog

Gluten Free in the Upper Midwest

Burch Steakhouse & Pizza Bar December 16, 2014

I must admit that I wasn’t too excited to go to Burch at first, because the pizza and dumplings sounded amazing, but I figured they wouldn’t have any of that in gluten free versions. but I was very pleasantly surprised…

while they don’t have gluten free pizzas, several of the dumplings can be made gluten free! they make homemade egg noodles to sub for some of the dumplings menu (at least they taste homemade, I guess I didn’t ask to verify though). I tried two of the three or four options. I’m not sure why I ordered the noodles with lobster, caraway and mint, because I dislike caraway… but the noodles with walnut and gorgonzola I loved!! there was at least one more option that I had to struggle with myself not to order (next time). I know that a lot of Italian restaurants carry gluten free noodles now, but these are quite different, they taste homemade, are a different type of noodle, and have such delightful sauces and toppings that are completely different than Italian restaurants. I just wish that I could get take-out noodles (“dumplings”) from them regularly! they’re also quite reasonably priced, around $10. I believe that they’re meant to be split across several people to sample, but if you order one, that would be sufficient for a whole meal, though quite rich for one. I had a lot to take home!

as for the steaks, of course the steaks are gluten free (and they have a huge assortment of grass fed, regular, wagyu, etc. the largest steak assortment I think I’ve ever seen! and very tasty too.

and of course many of the salads and sides are gluten free, they have a list if you ask.

Burch is located on Hennepin and Franklin, at the crux of Downtown and Uptown, and only open in the evenings, starting at 5pm.


Erte October 24, 2014

Erte is located in Northeast Minneapolis, and has a quaint, atmosphere, perfect for a romantic evening out. it’s not a huge restaurant, so you may want to make reservations. particularly if you plan to dine while they have live music on Fridays and Saturdays.

it’s the kind of restaurant that likes to keep their menu fresh, and change it up. in fact, the menu they post online might not be exactly what they currently offer… but it will give you the idea of the types of things that they serve. and one constant that they’re known for is their steaks.

and while the menu may change, they should always have a version marked for what is or can be gluten free, so be sure to ask for that.

when I went, they had the most amazing polenta sticks. I love polenta sticks in general, though I’ve had some difficulty re-creating them at home, which then makes me appreciate them even more.. and these were the most amazing ones I’d ever tasted! usually I only find these at Brazilian steakhouses, just plain or with parmesan. but these had a quinoa coating of sorts, and an amazing dip to go with them. I couldn’t get enough of these, and hope that they become a menu regular!

as for the main entree, I couldn’t decide between the short ribs or the steak, and eventually decided on the steak. it was quite delicious, but I sort of wished I’d tried the short ribs, as it can be more unique with the various prep and sauce options. the risotto was also very tempting. I believe that I got the au gratin potatoes as my side, which was good, but different (and larger) than I’d expected. I think I’d probably try something new next time.

all in all, the regular menu is pretty small, so that means that the gluten free one is even smaller. but it’s filled with more meat- and veggie-based entrees, rather than burgers or lots of carbs, so you don’t miss out on too much. and it’s got every thing you need: apps, salads, steaks, and other entrees, and a nice variety of sides. so although it’s a short list of options, it’s actually enough.

Erte is a little pricey, so it’s great for a special night out. but it’s got delicious food, and the live music (which is surprisingly unique). so it makes for a great night out.


DeLeo Brothers Pizza May 30, 2013

I recently tried this place out with my parents, as they’re big fans of this restaurant. and I can definitely see why..  the staff was very friendly and helpful!

although the gluten free pizza crust wasn’t the best I’ve ever had, it’s just nice to find restaurants that make the effort! (the regular crust looked amazing, by the way.. for your friends and family that go with you) and these guys seem like they’ve really put the effort in, making sure their toppings are gluten-free as well. and I don’t believe that they charged any extra for the gluten-free crust, like so many others do. I believe what they told my mother was that they don’t think people should be punished for their allergies. this is really nice of them, as I know those GF pizza crusts can be a lot more expensive to buy.

another nice touch is that although we can’t do the regular cheese, we can do goat cheese. and they happen to have a goat cheese for their pasta that they shredded for us instead of the regular. so that was a treat as well!

as I said, I can see why my folks are big fans of DeLeo Bros. it’s a nice, family-owned restaurant that goes out of their way for their customers!


Champps Americana July 6, 2011

I was at Champps over the weekend, and found out that they have a new gluten-free menu! they’ve only had it for about a month, according to our waitress, so I asked a lot of questions to make sure they were preparing my food properly. all went well though, and they were extremely careful for me.

chicken satays were the only appetizers available, but it’s nice to have any choices! especially if you’re just going out for a drink.(after all, it is a sports bar!)

they had a lot of bun-less burger options, and all of the sandwiches can be made gluten free by omitting the bun as well.  but feel free to bring your own slice of bread if you want to make it a proper sandwich!

as is typical, there are a few salad and salad dressings that are gluten free.

as for the other entrees, options such as steak, ribs, salmon, and balsamic chicken are all gluten free.

the fries are of course off limits, as are the homemade chips. but there are a surprising amount of gluten free sides available, like coleslaw, cottage cheese, potato salad, mashed potatoes, veggies, and fruit, but you may have to pay extra for some of those.

although the gluten free menu is relatively new there, they seem to take it seriously. it’s great to see more restaurant options all the time!


The Herb Box December 27, 2010

The Herb Box is a great new restaurant inside the Eden Prairie Lifetime Fitness (on Prairie Center Drive). and luckily, you don’t have to be a Lifetime member to eat there.

almost everything is made from scratch, and everything I’ve tried has been delicious. the gluten-free menu items are marked either “GF” for gluten-free as is, or “RGF” for request gluten-free, which can be modified to be safe for us celiacs.

since it’s relatively new, there are a few kinks they seem to be working out. for instance, the breakfast and brunch menus don’t have any gluten-free designations on their menus, but there ARE gluten-free options available (sadly, the buckwheat pancakes aren’t one of them though~ those DO contain gluten). since everything is made on-site, they are extremely knowledgeable about the ingredients and cooking methods, so if you’re uncertain about anything, just ask. they’re very friendly and helpful.

the lunch and dinner menus both have several GF items. the butternut squash corn enchiladas look really interesting, but I usually opt for the pulled pork street tacos~ they’re really delicious!! I also really enjoy the chicken chili, which isn’t a typical chili~ it’s not a tomato-based soup. just make sure you “request gluten-free” and they’ll leave off some of the toppings (tortilla chip strips, I think). this is dairy-free as well if you let them know not to add ANY of the toppings, and just serve as is. I also love getting a side of the crisp fingerling potatoes. there was some discussion of where it was normally cooked versus where it should be cooked to make it gluten-free. make sure you point out that they may need to change up where they cook them for you (they should probably be marked “RGF” rather than “GF” in the menu). those are the perfect side dish or bar food, so definitely try them out. another great appetizer or side dish is the edamame. this is a fried dish, but instead of checking into where it should be fried, I just had mine steamed. they’re deliciously salty! there are a few other dishes that are, or can be, gluten-free as well. these are just some of my quickly-growing list of favorites!

everything that I’ve tried so far has been absolutely delicious. and besides that, it’s all very healthy, in everything from the ingredients to the oil they use. beyond a few menu labeling issues, I couldn’t be happier about this new restaurant. if you get a chance to go there, I don’t think that you’ll be disappointed!


New Hope Cinema Grill March 13, 2010

the New Hope Cinema Grill offers gluten-free pizzas! it’s a great place for everyone’s entertainment~ couples, families, or even kids’ birthday parties. it can also be rented out for various events; and at times they offer live performances, such as comedians. it’s a rare thing to find a theater that offers dinner & a movie.

it’s a movie theater with six screens that show slightly older movies, and they serve entire dinners during the movie. everyone’s seated and orders their entire meal from apps to dessert, and then they bring the food as it’s ready.

there are special weeknight deals on Tuesdays ($2 Tuesdays~ discounted admission and concession items) and Wednesdays (pizza night~ though I’m not sure if pizza night specials would be available with the gluten-free pizzas).

they’re currently re-vamping their menu, so it would be a good time to go and show your interest in gluten-free products and foods, if you think this is something that you would enjoy. I don’t think many people are aware of their gluten-free pizzas yet, so they haven’t seen much demand, other than for groups of kids that have rented out the theater for special showings. but if they do see higher demand for it, they may expand to get GF buns and such.

and of course, there are other items that can be altered to be gluten-free, such as salads without croutons, plain burgers, etc. their menu is on their website.

I haven’t actually been there yet myself~ I actually just found out about them. but it looked so unique and fun, that I called them up to get some more info to share with everyone right away! I can’t wait to go!


Biaggi’s February 16, 2010

Biaggi’s is a fun restaurant to go to if you’re celiac / gluten-free. they have a ton of options (they have a large, two-page menu of gluten-free items!), with a wide variety of price ranges, which makes it a good option for many different occasions.

there are a few appetizers that you can start with. I haven’t ordered them before, but carpaccio is always good, and caprese salad has been a long-time favorite of mine, so the apps look really tasty.

for casual, more budget-friendly dining, salads are a good option. there are quite a few fun salad options, but I’ve never ventured beyond my favorite, which happens to be the chopped chicken salad. I don’t know what it is about this salad, but I can never get enough~ lettuce, tomato, avocado, bacon, grilled chicken, and a delicious (and dairy-free) creamy dressing. it’s like my favorite chicken club sandwich in salad form. and how can you go wrong with avocados and bacon?! but there are tons of other salads to try out as well.

the pasta is also quite reasonable, and it also comes with a ton of options. there are a handful of specialty pasta dishes. but even if you just want noodles with a pasta sauce, they have a dozen gluten-free sauces~ including alfredo, bolognese, espresso sauce, marsala, mac & cheese sauce, pesto, roasted red pepper cream, rum caramel, scallion cream, etc. the only problem is that if you have dairy allergies, the pasta sauce choices are much more limited. in fact, they basically have to crush tomatoes and make it into a sauce, at least that was the case the last time I ordered pasta.

gluten-free pizzas are a new addition to their GF menu. they kindly brought samples of their new pizzas to various celiac groups around the Twin Cities, and were given rave reviews.  it looks like the menu has finally been updated to reflect the gluten free pizza options.

and if you’d like to make your visit more of a special occasion, they have quite a few entrees that are pretty elegant and tasty. I’ve still never gotten to the seared sea bass, but I’ve been eying that one for awhile now. there are plenty of chicken dishes, and a few steak options. I’ve had the grilled chicken pietro a couple of times. it’s not the best thing I’ve had, but as long as there isn’t too much of the thick sauce on it, I find it strangely addicting.

in fact, I was recently involved in a wedding (in Illinois), and the groom’s dinner was at a restaurant with no gluten-free options. so my dinner (and lunch the next day) came from Biaggi’s. I felt more comfortable getting my food from a restaurant who is fully aware of allergy and cross-contamination concerns anyway. so their entrees really are worthy of special occasions.

locations in the Minneapolis/ St Paul area include Maple Grove and Eden Prairie, but there are locations several locations in the Midwest and in a few more states nationwide.