The Old Strathcona area is home to some of the city’s best meals, all within a few blocks of each other. I have been a resident in this neighbourhood for over 8 years and amassed a list of favourite places. I was happy to discover many of them offer great gluten-free options too! If you are looking for a delicious night out on the Ave check out my list of Favourite Old Strathcona Restaurants with Gluten-Free Menus below!
Welcome to Old Strathcona’s little taste of South Korea. Their menu features some delicious street food style dishes. Their top selection, Street Eats & Small Plates, is my favourite with different kinds of Jeon (savoury Korean pancake), Kimbap (small seaweed wraps rolled with pickled veggies inside), and Ddukbbokki (chewy bite-size rice cakes coated in different sauces) to choose from. Some classic Korean main dishes include Budae Jjigae (Military Stew), Bibimbap (rice bowl), and Bulgogi Ssam (Lettuce wraps with beef). Order a few dishes to share and maximize your flavour experience.
Nongbu Gluten Free Details:
Look for the green GF beside the dishes that they can make gluten-free. There were six GF dishes available when I visited. Some of these dishes are not normally gluten free and need to be modified. Be sure to let them know it is the gluten-free version that you want and double check that it is a GF dishes once they serve it. I am a big fan of Kimbap & Ddukbbokki so I ordered the NongBu Kimbap (I love the crunch with the pickled vegetables) and the Honey Butter Ddukbbokki (a sweet, chewy dish akin to a dessert). Our servers were extremely helpful and let me know the little dishes of Kimchi & pickled radish were also gluten-free. She even checked the Korean website for Kooksoondang’s makkoli (Korean rice wine) to confirm it is gluten-free.
Yes, this hip place is always busy but I have never waited more than 10 minutes for a table. I think the best seats are the booths beside the window. Here, it is all about the burgers (ask about their weekly cameo burger), Sandwiches (some are made with smoked meat from next door), and the Baked Mac n Cheese. When it comes to choosing a side, it is not an easy choice as their salads are so delicious and the fries are freshly cut. For dessert, there is really only one option and it will melt in your mouth; the skillet cookie, sized perfectly for sharing.
The Next Act Gluten Free Details:
The staff here is very knowledgeable about gluten-free needs and can help with any menu questions. Almost everything on the menu the kitchen can turn into a gluten-free dish. The best part is they have a dedicated gluten-free fryer. I ordered the Pulled Pork Sandwich with a side of fries. For dessert, there was no gluten-free cookie option but I did get to dig into some Peanut Butter Pinocchio Ice Cream.
If you are looking for Maritime eats on this side of the country, this is the place to find it. They named the restaurant after Pizza Corner, the iconic area in Halifax, Nova Scotia. If you’ve ever been drunk and hungry in Halifax, you’ve probably been here (whether you remember it or not!). Here they serve all the classic Maritime dishes including; Garlic Fingers, Mini Lobster Rolls, Brothers Fried Pepperoni, Donairs, Pizzas, a great selection of Seafood & Chips, and tons of Maritime beer!
Blowers & Grafton Gluten Free Details:
Once I saw their gluten-free menu, my fear of never getting to enjoy Garlic Fingers again washed away. My server confirmed their kitchen has a dedicated gluten-free fryer, oven, and prep table area. While my menu was smaller than the regular one, I still had a lot to choose from. I got an order of Mild Brothers Fried Pepperoni to start. When my Garlic Fingers came out the crust was much thinner, but it had a great crunch and tasted just like a regular order.
This is one of the trendiest spots on the Ave. Outside features patios in the front and back. Inside is dimly lit by neon signs with eclectic décor spray-painted on the walls and funky videos playing in the background. Their menu has many delicious Mexican inspired dishes to choose from and they are known for their tequila selection.
El Cortez Gluten Free Details:
We visited on Tuesday and it was all about the tacos. All of their tacos, except the Pescado (fried fish), can be made gluten-free by choosing the corn tortillas (which is too bad because it is so yummy!). I was sure to let my server know about my allergy before ordering some Carnitas Al Pastor (pork), Butter Chicken, and Mojo Pollo (chicken) tacos. When I asked about cross-contamination, they let me know that the gluten-free tacos are prepared away from the gluten ones.
If you have noticed the scent of roasting meat wafting around the Whyte Ave area, this is where it originated. This restaurant is all about family style dining with shared dishes for the table. They slow smoke their meat all day and use simple seasonings. Every bite is deliciously juicy. On each table are bottles of their homemade sauces so you can try them all.
Meat Gluten Free Details:
The menu is easy to read with bold GF beside the items that are gluten-free. A good selection of the smoked meat is gluten-free and about half of the side dishes are as well. We ordered the Beef Brisket and Pulled Pork, with Brussels Sprouts and Garlic Fries as the sides. I am so happy that they have a dedicated gluten free fryer for their fries because they were amazing! All the sauces are gluten free except for the bourbon one. Make sure to ask before adding them to your meal as they may change out the sauces occasionally.
This cosy diner is one of Edmonton’s popular brunch spots. Even though they have many tables, expect at least a 15-minute wait to snag one. Their menu focuses on local ingredients, including farm fresh eggs and house-made ketchup. It is a simple but delicious brunch menu with Benedict’s and Omelettes as the crowd favourites.
Local Tip: Love whipped cream? Then you need to order their Hot Chocolate or Cafe Mocha; both come topped with house-made chocolate whipped cream.
Highlevel Diner Gluten Free Details:
Just ask your server and they will bring over the gluten-free menu. It is almost the same as the regular brunch menu with gluten-free bread substituted in. The Benedict I ordered came on a gluten-free English muffin. It was delightfully tasty! They also feature a full gluten-free lunch and dinner menu.
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Please note: this is a list of restaurants that primarily serve foods containing gluten. I felt good after each visit and did not get “glutened”, but I understand that everyone’s experience with Celiac Disease is unique to them. When visiting these places still ask questions about food ingredients and preparation as they might vary from my experience.
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