Gluten Free Restaurant Choices for Valentine’s Day

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McCormick & Schmick's Gluten Free Kobie Burger

Gluten Free Kobie Burger

Help!  I want to take my date out for Valentine’s Day. Where should we go?

Below are my top five picks (of options available nationally) for a safe, enjoyable gluten free meal out with your date.  It, um, might be a little late to get advanced seating, so when in doubt…opt for number 1 or number 5!

1.  Broiler to plate – Dine in!

Okay, so you want your date to feel pampered.  You can do this easily, quickly, and very romantically!

  • Stop at your favorite grocery.  Grab a nice cut of steak (filet, strip, or sirloin are great options), a bundle of asparagus, some red potatoes or baking potatoes, some Haagen Dazs chocolate ice cream, and some fresh fruit.
  • If you’re using baking potatoes, wash them and pop into the microwave for 4-5 minutes each.  For red potatoes (if baby-sized) wash them and place them in a small saucepan with some butter and parsley; saute until tender.
  • While the potatoes are cooking, you can prepare the steak under the broiler (put some butter and your favorite herbs on top) until it’s almost cooked through.  Take it out and let it rest on the stove.
  • While the broiler is still hot, roast the asparagus with some olive oil and rosemary.
  • Voila!  Dinner is served.
  • While your date admires their plate, slice up the fresh fruit, sprinkle some sugar on top, and place it in the refrigerator until dinner is over.
  • Take your time and enjoy dinner with your date!  Ready for dessert?
  • Grab your favorite sundae bowls, fill them with the ice cream and fruit (now macerated in its own juice) and watch your date smile and enjoy!

2.  McCormick & Schmick’s

This chain is known for their fresh seafood options, which change daily.  They also have a variety of great steaks and salads available.  I have personally been pleased with the service I receive there, as well as their knowledge, awareness, and willingness to accommodate gluten and grain free meals.  

3.  Abuelo’s

Abuelo’s has a nice variety of options on their gluten free menu.  Although I don’t personally eat grain based items, they provide gluten free guests with their own tortilla chips and salsa.

4.  bd’s Mongolian Grill

Don’t worry, your date will not frown at this if it constitutes safe dining for their dietary lifestyle!  I love that there are many options to choose (I do steer clear of things housed next to the pasta, just in case) and that they make it in the back in a clean pan, which guards against cross contamination!  Check out my post about eating there at this link.

5.  Chipotle

It might seem silly to dine at Chipotle for Valentine’s Day, but maybe your date is practical and fun.  Maybe you’re on a budget.  Maybe you live in an area where there aren’t many options.  Whatever the reason, Chipotle is a good choice if you follow these instructions to stay safe (and if the location carries carnitas, currently the only grain-free, soy-free option as a meat choice).

Regardless of location, keep safe practices in mind, such as:

  1. Call ahead and be sure the location understands gluten free and has options available
  2. Alert the wait staff and/or manager that you need to have allergy-friendly choices.
  3. Confirm while you are ordering that the meal will be prepared separately.
  4. Confirm when your meal is delivered that it was prepared according to the instructions.
  5. Have fun!  Relax, and enjoy.


~GGF Gourmet

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