- Gluten free flours have no natural binder in them. Use vegetable gums such as Xanthan or Guar tsp per cup of flour. A mixture of both gums works best.
- When using gluten free flours always replace the sugar in a recipe with caster sugar. It works better with the finer flours.
- Gluten free flours are drier than wheat flour so you often need to add more moisture in a recipe. Simply use a little more butter, oil, milk or whatever the recipe already contains.
- Measurements are vital when baking gluten free. If you are used to throwing in a bit of this and a bit of that you may need to be more careful. A tiny amount out and a recipe will fail.
- Freeze gluten free muffins, cakes and scones the day they are baked if not eaten. They will defrost perfectly, but will go stale quickly if left out.
- Make double batches every time you cook and freeze one you will be grateful for unexpected guests, lunchboxes or the many GF food emergencies.
- If baking Dairy/lactose free replace butter with coconut oil in most recipes it’s also much better for you.
- Gluten Free pastry can be quite crumbly. If you can’t just press it into a pie tin base, roll between sheets of waxed baking paper – this prevents it from sticking to the rolling pin and falling apart.
Egg generally serves as a binding agent and is a very helpful ally when baking gluten free. However, if you are vegan, or allergic to eggs this may not be possible for you. So here are a list of easy egg substitutes for successful baking.
- 2 Tbsp water, 1 Tbsp cornflour, 1 Tbsp soya flour
- 1 Tbsp ground flax seeds mixed into 3 Tbsp warm water
- 1/4 tsp xanthum gum, 2 tsp potato starch and 1/2 tsp oil
- 1 Tbsp oil, 1 Tbsp cider vinegar, 1 tsp baking powder and? tsp cornflour
- Half a mashed banana (will add a banana flavor to your recipe)
- 2 Tbsp apple sauce
- Half a small cube of silken tofu
More and more pizza places are becoming gluten conscious. If making a booking, call ahead to ensure there are gluten free bases available. For pizza delivery you can have Gluten free Dominoes and Gluten free Hell Pizza. La Porchetta, Gina’s and I Buco and now all have gluten free options. Just make sure your toppings are also gluten free.
Most Indian food is gluten free. You can even have poppadoms! Just steer clear of the breads and deep fried starters and you should be OK.
Thai food is also mostly gluten free. If you want to order a noodle based dish make sure you ask for rice noodles. Again, say no to those deep fried starters.
Be wary of tortillas! CHECK with the kitchen as to what their burritos are made from as the supermarket brands contain wheat. You should be able to get the kitchen to make a simple dish on rice if their tortillas aren’t made from corn.
If you want to eat this cuisine, you have to have a lot of faith in your communication skills (and your local takeaways). Ask for no MSG, choose dishes on rice, or rice noodles and avoid battered options like sweet & sour pork. Remember, soy sauce is made from wheat, so it’s safest to ask for an unseasoned meal.
The following places have gluten free burger buns if requested, there will normally be an extra charge for these as well. Burger Fuel, Burger Wisconsin, Murder Burger, The Chip Shop are all safe. Just make sure you check your fillings are also gluten free.
Falafel, hummus, salads and rice are gluten free. So you can definitely find a meal at a Turkish restaurant. Avoid breads, and if you want other sauces, check if they are gluten free first. Always ask about the meat before ordering some places combine with breadcrumbs. Don’t forget to check their fillings and omit the tabbouleh from your GF kebab – it’s full of wheat.
Fish & Chips
The problem with chips is cross contamination ? so these are totally out for coeliac’s unless you make them yourself at home or go to The Chip Shop in Royal Oak. Grilled fish should be OK, but almost everything else is a no go zone.
Beware of sushi! It?s not just the soy sauce, check which vinegar they use to cook the rice with. Avoid all noodles, tempura and dumplings and check about sauces and condiments before ordering. Wagamamas is a good place to go.
Stick to simple dishes. Most decent places will make you a simple meal like steak with steamed vegetables. Be sure to let the chef know you are gluten intolerant to ensure they take the best care with your meal.
Keep ordering simple. If you want a sauce, check whether it is safe with the kitchen. Avoid breads, pastas, crumbed or battered foods, noodles and MSG. Order simple and satisfying dishes non processed meats, vegetables, legumes, rice, tofu, fruits and cheeses are fine to eat. If you can, call and ask ahead. The kitchen will be easier to deal with if they’re prepared.
If you are Coeliac, or are very gluten intolerant it is always best to let staff know. Most people are still not aware of issues around cross contamination and will not even think twice about re-using a knife, or putting your gluten free bread into their normal toaster. Just let them know. Explain that it is a serious allergy which can make you very ill. This way you can feel more confident about how safe your food is, and they will know more for next time.
Burger Fuel – Various Locations NZ wide
This popular takeaway outlet stock gluten free burger buns for their gluten free customers. Do double check and ensure the burger fillings are gluten free.
The Chip Shop – 711 Manukau Rd, Royal Oak, Auckland
This fish and chip shop offers customers plenty of gluten free options including burgers and fish.
Hells Pizza – Various locations throughout New Zealand
Like Burger Fuel, this home grown pizzeria has gluten free options available.? We recommend letting them know that you are gluten free, to ensure you select pizzas with safe toppings.
il buco 113 Ponsonby Road, Ponsonby, Auckland
il buco is fantastic as they actually came here and sought advice on how to set up a coeliac friendly kitchen. They make incredibly decadent pizza with a wide range of toppings with plenty of vegan and dairy free options available also.
Mexicali Fresh – Various locations Auckland wide
We first came here for a friends birthday, and were pleasantly surprised to be able to eat TACOS!? The soft burrito’s and churros aren’t gluten free, but there are many other fabulous options to choose from.? Healthy, fresh flavors, with vegetarian/vegan and dairy free also available.
Wagamama Sylvia Park dining lane; 1 Courthouse Lane (Auckland Central); 29 Nuffield St (New market)
Have allergy cards stating which items are gluten free or what can be made gluten free
Wok’n Noodle Mt Eden & Auckland City
One of our lovely customers let us know about this via our Facebook page. Not only do they have gluten free options available, but also have healthy, low carb options alongside classic rice and noodle favorites.
Cafes and Restaurants
V & A Cafe – Cnr Victoria & Albert Streets
Has a range of sandwiches, which can all be made with gluten free bread (toasted of course). There is also always a selection of gluten free cakes and slices on the counter. And to make it even better, the food is organic and free range and the girls behind the counter are always welcoming.
286 Mt Wellington Hwy, in Sylvia Park
Open for lunch and dinner they have a separate gluten free menu
If inquiring after gluten free meals, they state that you can mix and match any of the meals to make a gluten free meal of your choice. Mikano are very accommodating and have such great food.
Circus Circus 447 Mt Eden Road, Mt Eden, Auckland
This casual cafe/restaurant in Mt Eden village can alter most of their meals to accommodate those on a gluten free diet. They also have some gluten free desserts. We love this restaurant and it is the children’s first choice for any celebration out,
Kermadec Brasserie restaurant – Viaduct
The wait staff are very helpful about gluten free options, also I also two gluten free dessert options to choose from. The restaurant has a great atmosphere, the wait staff are friendly, the food is deliciously cooked and the view out over the viaduct is beautiful.
Foodstore – Viaduct
Has an extensive menu with gluten free options marked clearly. The food is beautifully prepared with fresh organic ingredients, but is very busy and service can sometimes be slow. All the meals are available in starter and main size and if you are there for lunch it might be a good idea to have the starter size as the meals are huge.
Cosset Cafe – 1087 New North Road, Mt Albert, Auckland
Cosset is a vegetarian/vegan specialty coffee shop who try their best to keep 50% of their menu also gluten free.? They have a vegan kitchen, so their food is totally egg and dairy free. They are open daytime’s, so a great place to pop in to for lunch.
Kokako Cafe – 537 Great North Road, Grey Lynn, Auckland
This cafe specializes in organic, vegetarian and dietary requirements as well as providing nutritious and delicious food!
The Library Cafe – 55 Princes Street, Onehunga, Auckland
These guys provide gluten free, dairy free and vegetarian options – and they know what they’re doing. The owners have children with allergies themselves, so know what they’re doing when it comes to preparing fabulous, allergy friendly food.
Little Bird bakery – 385 New North Road, Kings land, Auckland
Little Bird have been supplying us for years, and they now have a wee coffee shop where you can get fabulous raw food treats. Their products are all gluten free, vegan and YUM! They are open odd hours 8am – 2.30pm Tues – Fri and 8am – 3pm Saturday, but definitely worth a visit.
The Organic Pizza Company 27 Davis Cres, Newmarket
Can do gluten free pizza and pasta.
Trinity of Silver Cafe – 911 New North Road, Mt Albert, Auckland
Situated out of the central city, this cafe has been a favorite for years, providing gluten and dairy free options as well as emphasizing free range eggs and bacon. These guys are now open for dinner too!
Zarbo Delicatessen and Cafe ? 24 Morrow St, Newmarket
Have all their gluten free items color coded in their cabinets.
Grouchos Cafe – 1/143 Wellesley Street, Auckland
A retro cafe that serves gluten free salads, homemade gluten free baking, buckwheat & linseed pancakes, gluten free chicken wraps and a wide range of gluten free pies, toasted sandwiches.
The Falls Restaurant – Corner of Alderman and Edmonton Roads, Henderson
This restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and can provide plenty of dishes for coeliac’s.
Monsoon Poon – Restaurants in Auckland and Wellington
Another recommendation from regular customers, Monsoon Poon is a traditional Thai restaurant that has a separate allergies menu – you just have to ask. They also have vegetarian options available.
Ragu 5 Pt Chevalier Road, Pt Chevalier, Auckland
This is Hannah’s FAVORITE restaurant – the chef here is Coeliac, so at least half of the menu is gluten free, and they understand the meaning of ‘Coeliac safe’. The food is fabulous (and the wine list is too).? They are also working on their GF desserts…
The Restaurant Claret ? 127 Onehunga Mall
A great wee restaurant in Onehunga who will adapt almost any item of the menu to gluten free
Open for Dinner Tues -Sat from 6pm ~ Lunch Tues -Fri 11:30am-2:30pm
Market Kitchen & Cafe – 19 Davis Crescent, Newmarket
Many of our dishes are gluten free or can be adapted to be GF. The menu changes regularly so please visit their?website.?Home baked GF bread is available for sandwiches. Please advise of allergies or dietary requirements before ordering.
Hallertau – Riverhead
This restaurant is part of a boutique brewery near Riverhead and specializes in fresh and natural food. When asked about gluten free options, the wait staff were very nice, they checked with the chef and then brought out a menu that the chef had written on to mark the gluten free meals, including the ones that could be made gluten free and what he would remove / substitute.
Paper Moon cafe and bar – Albany mall
Paper Moon has an amazing menu with GF and AGF (available gluten free) clearly marked on the menu and the options are extensive. The food is always delicious and the service is very friendly.
Eight Two – 82 Hinemoa St, Birkenhead
They even have their own restaurant baked gluten free bread. The staff were very helpful, when knowing you are gluten free are happy to point out the gluten free options, and offer to make some menu choices gluten free as well that aren’t normally!
Torpedo Bay cafe – Devonport
Is based in Torpedo Bay overlooking the water situated in the same building as the new navy museum. They have good coffee and because they have gluten free bread, most things on the blackboard menu can be made gluten free. They also have gluten free slices to choose from.
Fatima’s – Takapuna
Is a great healthy takeaway that sells filled pitas, salads, falafels and the famous potato koftas. They have gluten free wraps, and a card that lists if their sauces and chutney are gluten free, just ask and they will check it for you on the card under the counter.
DD’s Country Cafe – Waitoki (near dairy flat)
Has a number of gluten free options including something sweet, pizza bases and bread. It does depend on when you go, as the sweet options are usually made in the cafe but they should have a slice of gluten free chocolate brownie in the freezer if you don?t see a cake or a biscuit or the delicious passionfruit gluten free slice they have just started making.
Is a member of the Heritage hotel group and is situated in the far north of New Zealand on the Karikari peninsula. The resort?is 5 star and the gluten free choices on the menu and the beautiful food is fantastic. Many of the dishes, including entrees, mains and desserts are gluten free and the wait staff are very happy to help.
They serve pizza on a Friday and Saturday night during the summer. This isn’t stated on their website, nor on their sign at the gate but if you are on the Karikari peninsula over the summer months, give them a call as they now have gluten free pizza bases.
Tips for a Balanced GF Diet
It is important to remember with ANY restrictive diet that it’s easy to miss out on essential vitamins and minerals. In a gluten free diet it?s common to lack B vitamins: B1 (thiamin), B2 (riboflavin) and B3 (niacin). It?s also very easy to miss out on getting enough fiber and sometimes, protein.
Here are some good basic rules on keeping your gluten free diet healthy and balanced:
1) Eat 7+ a day fruit and veg to top up those vitamins and minerals.? One serving is about a handful – for more info have a look here. Our top 10 fruit and veg for high B vitamins and great taste are: avocado, broccoli, kumara, peas, kale, bananas, grapes, oranges, mangoes and dates
2) Don’t be scared to try new things? New things will lead to a much more varied diet which is a great way of getting good nutrition.? If you don’t know how to use a new grain or product, ask us or check online as there is an abundance of great tips and recipes available.
3) Be organised. It is very easy to eat crappy GF food when you’re hungry and desperate to fill the gap. Make sure you have snacks at your work or in your glove-box like corn-chips, nuts, GF bars, crackers, fruit or dried fruit. Know what you will be eating for lunch before you leave the house in the morning. Left overs make great work lunches.
4) Eat breakfast! When you first go gluten free you will feel more hungry than you used to, so it is really important to ensure you don’t overeat during the day. The best way to combat hunger is to have a high protein meal in the morning. So things like GF toast with eggs and avocado, or a GF porridge with your favorite fruits and nuts is a great start. If you aren’t a breakfast person, you can become one – it only takes five weeks to build a habit…
5) Familiarize yourself with the gluten free grains.? Most of them are higher in fiber and protein than wheat. Some of these include:
amaranth, buckwheat, millet, polenta, quinoa and tapioca. Don’t go overboard. Just start with one and see how it goes. We recommend trying buckwheat first as it is easy to use and tastes great. You’ll find a great and simple recipe on our website here.
6) Cook! This is the best way to combine a range of exciting grains, veges and meats to ensure you get a great balance of vitamins and minerals in a package you enjoy. Cook large quantities and freeze meals for those days where you have no time or energy.
7) And if you have tried all these things, and are still struggling, we recommend you go see a dietitian or nutritionist for some pro tips.
Tips on Travel
Gluten free International Travel
Did you know that you can take your own sealed food to most countries around the world?? When buying products for travel just be sure to pack long life, well sealed products.
If you are traveling to New Zealand from abroad, it’s important to know that many things you can easily bring into most countries, you may not be able to bring in here. Have a look at what you need to declare here, and try to steer away from bringing these things with you, as you may have to discard them at customs.
When booking your flights consider Air New Zealand. They offer a gluten free airline meal option – and we can confirm after a recent trip to Sydney that the meals are just delicious!
Do you need gluten free food for traveling in New Zealand?
We can deliver your gluten free groceries to your accomodation, all ready and waiting when you arrive in New Zealand.
Gluten free food is available throughout New Zealand but options are extremely limited in smaller towns. Stocking up on all your essentials is vital before leaving any city. Those with a gluten intolerance many be able to find a range of snacks and meals while travelling but anyone with Coeliac disease should be very wary of untrained kitchen staff cooking gluten free food for them.
While there is a growing awareness of gluten intolerance and Coeliac disease in New Zealand, restaurants and cafes often require further education and may inadvertently include gluten in your meal. Ensure you are VERY clear with the chef about your requirements and have your own supplies on hand, there is nothing worse than being in a small town and starving hungry!
Gluten free Food Travelling List:
Long life bread, cereal, pasta, soy sauce, crackers, biscuits, soup, chips, noodles
Jimmy Boswell offers tailored cooking classes for groups of 2 – 6 that run for 3 1/2 to 4 hours. To find out more check him out here.
Neville and Judy run cooking classes that many of our regular customers have RAVED?about. To find out more, check them out here