Gluten free food in Minneapolis

Are you looking for a nice place in Minneapolis where you can celebrate a special occasion with a gluten free meal? Or maybe you are looking for a casual spot where you can grab a gluten free meal on the go? Well either way, you are in the right place! In this article, we discuss all of our favorite restaurants with gluten free options in the Minneapolis area.

For each restaurant we discuss in this article, we will provide information on a few characteristics to help you determine whether that restaurant suits your preferences. We start this article out by laying out those characteristics. After that, we discuss some of our favorite sit down restaurants that offer gluten free options in the Minneapolis area. Next, we discuss some of our favorite fast casual restaurants that offer gluten free options in Minneapolis.

Characteristics of gluten free restaurants in Minneapolis, Minnesota

For each restaurant in the Minneapolis area that we discuss in this article, we will provide information on the following characteristics. This will help you determine which restaurant best suits your preferences.

  • Gluten free status. First, we will discuss the gluten free status of each restaurant. We will provide information on whether the restaurant is dedicated to gluten free food or not. If the restaurant is not dedicated to gluten free food, we will provide additional information to help assess the risk of cross contamination.
  • Other dietary restrictions. After that, we will discuss other food allergens and dietary restrictions that each restaurant caters to. Some of these restaurants cater specifically to gluten free diners, whereas others can accommodate a wide range of dietary restrictions.
  • Cuisine. Next, we will discuss the type of food that is served at each restaurant. Some of these restaurants serve one specific type of cuisine, whereas others blend flavors from multiple cuisines together.
  • Atmosphere. After that, we will discuss the atmosphere at each restaurant. This will include everything from the decor and ambiance at the restaurant to the level of formality at the restaurant.
  • Location. Next, we will discuss the location of each restaurant. Some of these restaurants are located right in the heart of downtown Minneapolis, whereas others are located further out towards the suburbs.
  • Seating. Finally, we will discuss the seating options that are available at each restaurant. This will include information on whether indoor or outdoor seating is available. It will also include information on whether reservations are recommended or required.

Gluten free sit down restaurants in Minneapolis, Minnesota

Now that we have laid out the characteristics we will use to provide additional information on each restaurant, we will discuss some of our favorite restaurants with gluten free options in Minneapolis. We will start by discussing our favorite sit down restaurants in Minneapolis. Note that these restaurants are listed roughly in order of preference, with our favorite spots appearing higher in the list.

Hai Hai

Hai Hai is a Southeast Asian restaurant that is easily one of our favorite spots in Minneapolis. In fact, it may be one of our favorite restaurants in all of North America. There is a lot to love about Hai Hai. For one, it is one of the most lively spots in town. The decor and ambiance are also superb. The restaurant is beautifully decorated with bright, colorful accents and extravagant pops of greenery. When you walk into the front doors, you feel like you have been transported to a beach in the tropics. As if that was not enough, the food is also amazing and largely celiac safe. They serve dishes that take inspiration from a wide range of South Asian cuisines and all of their dishes are absolutely delicious. It is rare to see a restaurant serve dishes from so many different cuisines and perfect all of them.

  • Gluten free status. Hai Hai is not a dedicated gluten free restaurant. That being said, almost every dish on their menu is gluten free or can be made gluten free upon request. They have a labeled menu that marks items that are or can be made gluten free. It also provides information on what dishes can be made in a way that is safe for people with celiac disease or people who are sensitive to cross contamination. Their staff are knowledgeable about celiac disease and know how to make dishes that are celiac safe, we always feel safe eating here.
  • Other dietary restrictions. Hai Hai also labels items that are or can be made vegan and vegetarian friendly on the menu. They have a decent number of items that can be made vegan or vegetarian friendly, especially for a restaurant that serves Southeast Asian food.
  • Cuisine. Hai Hai serves dishes from a variety of different Southeast Asian cuisines. If we had to pick just one, we would say that their menu takes the most inspiration from Vietnamese cuisine. That being said, they have a range of other offerings that use flavors that are popular in the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, and other countries.
  • Atmosphere. Hai Hai has some of the best decor in all of Minneapolis. The restaurant is decorated with bright, colorful accents and is lined with luscious plants, flowers, and greenery. Every time we walk through the front doors, we feel like we are being transported to a tropical beach destination. They also have some excellent music selections that help to lift up the vibe. This is one of the most lively spots in all of Minneapolis and it is a popular spot to gather with friends to celebrate a special occasion. There is always excitement in the air.
  • Location. Hai Hai is located in the northeast portion of Minneapolis near the Arts District. That means that it is a little bit out of the way if you are coming from downtown Minneapolis. It is located on a bustling street that has a few other popular restaurants along it.
  • Seating. Hai Hai has both indoor and outdoor seating available. This is a popular spot so we recommend making reservations ahead of time to secure a spot. This is a large spot that has a lot of seating available, so you generally do not have to make reservations as far in advance as you do at other popular spots with smaller footprints. We generally make reservations a week or so ahead of time.
Scallion pancakes from Hai Hai in Minneapolis
Cauliflower from Hai Hai in Minneapolis

Owamni by the Sioux Chef

Owamni is another popular restaurant that is known for having delicious food. Owamni is an upscale Native American restaurant that serves creative dishes that showcase traditional Native American flavors in unique ways. The food at Owamni centers around ingredients that are native to the area and does not include ingredients that were introduced by European colonizers like wheat flour, processed sugar, and dairy. That just happens to mean that their menu is largely gluten free. There are sometimes one or two items that contain gluten on the menu, but it is not uncommon for the menu to be entirely gluten free. That means that this is a safe bet for anyone who is sensitive to cross contamination.

  • Gluten free status. While the menu at Owamni changes throughout the seasons, one thing that remains constant is that their menu is either entirely gluten free or almost entirely gluten free. There have been times where they have had one or two items on their menu that did contain gluten, but there is rarely more than one item on the menu that does. That means that the chances of cross contamination are very low. Their menu is not labeled with information about which items contain gluten, but their servers can provide information on whether there are any items you need to avoid.
  • Other dietary restrictions. Owamni also has a range of vegetarian options that are clearly labeled on the menu. In addition to most of their items being gluten free, most of the items on their menu are also dairy free. That means that the majority of the vegetarian items are also vegan friendly. It also means that this is a great spot for the lactose intolerant.
  • Cuisine. Owamni serves dishes that put creative twists on traditional Native American food. Most of the items on their menu feature creative combinations and presentations of traditional Native American flavors. The food that they serve is very unique because it is made without ingredients that were brought over by European colonizers like refined sugars, wheat flour, and dairy.
  • Atmosphere. Owamni has a bright and airy space that is perfect for their restaurant. The walls are lined with large windows that let in lots of natural light and provide a nice view of the grass and river outside. The restaurant is adorned with sleek, minimalistic furniture that allows the beautiful views and the delicious food to take the spotlight. While they do not have a strict dress code, this is an upscale spot where people often go to celebrate special occasions. That means that people generally dress nicely.
  • Location. Owamni is located along the river that runs through Downtown Minneapolis. That means that most of the seating areas in the restaurant have a lovely view of the river. It also means that you can walk there on one of the paths that run alongside the river if you are heading over from a neighborhood that is upstream or downstream from Owamni.
  • Seating. Owamni has a mixture of indoor and outdoor seating available. Their outdoor seating and their bar seating are offered on a first come first serve basis, so there is no need to make a reservation. That being said, their standard indoor seating generally requires a reservation. This is a popular spot where reservations book up fast, so we recommend making a reservation a few weeks in advance if you plan to dine indoors. This is even true if you plan to attend during off hours.
Squash from Owamni in Minneapolis
Sweet potatoes from Owamni in Minneapolis

Bar La Grassa

Bar La Grassa is an Italian restaurant that is commonly cited as being one of the best restaurants, if not the best restaurant, in all of Minneapolis. And we certainly agree with this sentiment, this is the number one place we would recommend if you are looking for amazing food that is guaranteed to impress. The only reason that Bar La Grassa is not higher on our list is because there are a lot of ingredients that contain gluten that are used in their kitchen. While many of the items on their menu naturally contain gluten, the vast majority of their menu can be made gluten free with substitutions or omissions. Their servers and kitchen staff are very knowledgeable about food allergies and can provide information on substitutions that need to be made in order to make items gluten free and potential sources of cross contamination.

  • Gluten free status. Bar La Grassa is not a dedicated gluten free restaurant. While many of the items on their menu naturally contain gluten, the vast majority of the items on their menu can be made gluten free upon request. They have a labeled menu that shows which items are gluten free or can be made gluten free with substitutions. Their servers are knowledgeable about how items on their menu are prepared and can provide additional information on what substitutions need to be made in order to make a given item gluten free. While they do make many items that contain gluten in their kitchen, we have found them to be excellent with handling food allergies and have never had an adverse reaction to their food.
  • Other dietary restrictions. Bar La Grassa also labels items that can be made vegetarian, vegan, and nut free on their menu. They are very accommodating with food allergies and dietary restrictions in general, so they may be able to accommodate other food allergies and dietary restrictions.
  • Cuisine. Bar La Grassa is an Italian restaurant that primarily serves Italian food. In particular, they are known for their amazing pasta dishes. Their menu contains a large range of unique and creative pasta dishes, most of which can be made gluten free by substituting in their homemade gluten free pasta. They strike a nice balance between carrying some traditional Italian dishes and some more unique dishes that introduce non-standard ingredients to put a spin on popular Italian classics. That means that there are options for adventurous eaters as well as those who prefer the classics.
  • Atmosphere. In addition to having amazing food, Bar La Grassa also has a lovely atmosphere. This is a trendy spot that is decorated with a mixture of modern industrial furniture and warm accents that make the restaurant feel more warm and inviting. While they do not have an overly formal environment, people tend to go here to celebrate special occasions so it is common for people to dress up. This is a popular spot that is always packed with excited patrons, so it has a very lively atmosphere. The restaurant tends to be dimly lit to provide a more intimate atmosphere.
  • Location. Bar La Grassa is conveniently located in the North Loop neighborhood. This is a popular downtown neighborhood that is packed with popular shops, restaurants, and bakeries. That means that there is lots to do in the area.
  • Seating. Bar La Grassa primarily has indoor seating. This is one of the most popular spots in the city, so we highly recommend making reservations a few weeks in advance. We generally make reservations as soon as reservations drop, especially if we are planning to go during peak weekend dinner hours.
Salad from Bar La Grassa in Minneapolis
Pasta from Bar La Grassa in Minneapolis

Hola Arepa

Hola Arepa is another great option for anyone who loves the ambiance at Hai Hai. While Hola Arepa does not feel quite as magical as Hai Hai, it still has some seriously cool decor that makes you feel like you are on a tropical island. It is no surprise that Hola Arepa is so reminiscent of Hai Hai because it is run by the same team that runs Hai Hai. And there are a few other ways that Hola Arepa resembled Hai Hai. For one, almost the entire menu is gluten free or can be modified to be gluten free. In addition to that, Hola Arepa serves dishes that are inspired by a few different cuisines. In particular, they serve dishes that are inspired by Latin street food.

  • Gluten free status. Hola Arepa is not a dedicated gluten free restaurant. That being said, the vast majority of their menu is gluten free. There are generally only one or two items on the menu that contain gluten. Even these items usually only contain small amounts of gluten and can generally be made gluten free with substitutions. Overall, this is a very safe spot for those who are sensitive to cross contamination. Items that do contain gluten are clearly marked on the menu.
  • Other dietary restrictions. Hola Arepa also has a range of items that are vegetarian and vegan friendly. Items that are or can be made vegetarian or vegan friendly are clearly marked on the menu. Items that contain nuts are also marked on the menu, so this is a good option for anyone with a nut allergy.
  • Cuisine. Hola Arepa has a diverse menu that is inspired by Latin street food. Just like Hai Hai, Hola Arepa serves dishes that are inspired by a few different cuisines. That being said, their menu has a large emphasis on Venezuelan-style arepas.
  • Atmosphere. Hola Arepa has some seriously amazing decor. The restaurant is decorated with plants, greenery, and carefully chosen accents that make you feel like you are on a tropical island. There are lots of aqua blue accents that perfectly mimic the color of the ocean water on a tropical beach. This is a great place to go if you are looking for somewhere that has an amazing ambiance, while still being relatively casual.
  • Location. Hola Arepa is located a few miles outside of the main downtown area. Unlike some of the other restaurants we have mentioned, it is not an easy walk from downtown. Specifically, it is located to the southwest of the city.
  • Seating. Hola Arepa has both indoor and outdoor seating available. This is a popular spot, so we recommend making reservations if you plan to attend during a popular time. If you are going to go during off hours, you may be okay without a reservation.
Plantains from Hola Arepa in Minneapolis
Arepas from Hola Arepa in Minneapolis

Colita

Colita is an upscale restaurant that serves creative dishes that combine different cuisines and cooking styles in unique ways. In particular, the menu at Colita combines traditional Mexican cuisine with BBQ cooking styles that are not native to Mexico. Many of their dishes take traditional Mexican dishes and add a smoked meat or vegetable that is cooked in a BBQ style. One notable fact about the menu is that there are a range of vegetarian options available. This surprised us as neither Mexican food nor BBQ dishes are known for being particularly vegetarian friendly. Another notable fact is that the menu is entirely gluten free! There are not any food items prepared at the restaurant that contain gluten.

  • Gluten free status. Colita is a dedicated gluten free restaurant. All of the food that they serve is entirely gluten free.
  • Other dietary restrictions. Colita has an impressive range of vegetarian options, especially when you consider the types of food that they serve. The menu takes inspiration from Mexican cuisine and American BBQ, both of which are known to be problematic for vegetarians. The staff at Colita go out of their way to make space for vegetarians at their restaurant.
  • Cuisine. Colita is a unique restaurant that combines different cuisines and cooking styles. Most of the food at Colita takes some sort of inspiration from Mexican cuisine. That being said, many of their dishes also take inspiration from BBQ and smoking techniques that do not necessarily originate from Mexico. It is common to see traditional Mexican dishes that have been modified to include an additional ingredient that is smoked or cooked BBQ style.
  • Atmosphere. Colita is an upscale spot with a nice ambiance. The restaurant is decorated with sleek furniture and lavish displays of plants and greenery. The walls are lined with large windows that let in all the natural light you could possibly want. The combination of the greenery and the natural light make the restaurant feel more warm and inviting than most other restaurants that are decorated with sleek, modern furniture. While Colita does not enforce a strict dress code, this is a nice place and people tend to dress up before heading over.
  • Location. Colita is located in the southwest suburbs of Minneapolis. It is 5 to 10 miles outside of downtown Minneapolis, so it is generally much easier to access if you have a car. There are public transportation options that go out there, but they may take a while.
  • Seating. Colita has both indoor and outdoor seating available. This is a popular spot, so we recommend making reservations ahead of time. We recommend making reservations a few weeks ahead of time if you want to attend during a popular time like peak weekend dinner hours. If you are willing to go during off hours then you will not need to make reservations as far ahead of time.
Tostadas from Colita in Minneapolis
Tostadas from Colita in Minneapolis

Gluten free fast casual restaurants in Minneapolis, Minnesota

Now that we have discussed some of our favorite sit down restaurants in Minneapolis that offer gluten free options, we will discuss some of our favorite fast casual spots that offer gluten free options.

Union Hmong Kitchen

Union Hmong Kitchen is without a doubt our number one recommendation if you are looking for a quick spot to grab a meal on the go. Union Hmong Kitchen is a Hmong restaurant that serves some seriously flavorful food. All of their dishes are served with rich sauces and glazes that really leave an impression. While they are not a dedicated gluten free establishment, almost all of the food that they serve is gluten free. They generally only have one or two items that contain gluten because they are served with rolls or buns. That means that the chances of cross contamination are still relatively low.

Note that while Union Hmong Kitchen has pop ups in a few different locations, we are most familiar with their food stall at the Graze in North Loop. Anything we say about Union Hmong Kitchen will be reflective of our experience at that location.

  • Gluten free status. Union Hmong Kitchen is not an entirely gluten free establishment, but they are about as close as you can get without being entirely gluten free. They generally only have one item on their menu that contains gluten, so the chance of cross contamination is relatively low. Their menu is clearly labeled to show which items are gluten free.
  • Other dietary restrictions. Union Hmong Kitchen also has vegan and vegetarian options available. Their menu is fairly small, so they generally only have one main course that is vegan friendly. That being said, many of their sides are vegetarian or vegan friendly. Options that are or can be made vegetarian and vegan friendly are clearly labeled on the menu.
  • Cuisine. The menu at Union Hmong Kitchen takes inspiration from Hmong food.
  • Atmosphere. Union Hmong Kitchen is located at the Graze, which is a fun food hall that has a variety of bars and food stalls where you can pick up food and drinks. Once you pick up your food, you can find a table at their communal seating. The Graze is a very popular spot for people to gather with large groups of friends for a casual meet up. That means that this is generally a fairly lively spot with lots of excitement in the air.
  • Location. Union Hmong Kitchen is located at the Graze in the North Loop neighborhood. It is located near many popular shops, restaurants, and attractions in the North Loop and Downtown neighborhoods.
  • Seating. There are a variety of indoor and outdoor seating options available at the Graze. This is a food hall with a variety of fast casual food stalls and bars, so they do not take reservations. This is a very popular spot to gather, so it may be a good idea to show up a little on the early or late side if you plan to stop by with a large party.
Tofu from Union Hmong Kitchen in Minneapolis
Tofu from Union Hmong Kitchen in Minneapolis

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