Gluten Free Breakfast in Austin, Naturally

While the term “gluten free” is tossed around left and right these days, when it’s actually time to sit down and find a good gluten free meal, it can be daunting. Daunting and often infuriating really. There are several places that advertise gluten free menus, a few that have “options” if you ask, and oh so many that can easily be made gluten free if you don’t mind that it’s in the same kitchen as the gluten-full. So here’s my part of the 2012 Austin Food Blogger Alliance City Guide, the most important part of your morning, the most important meal of the day: breakfast. Here are my top picks for gluten free breakfasts in Austin in no particular order.

Please keep in mind, these are MY top picks. If you have more, please let me know in the comment section below! And it is most definitely not exhaustive, everyday I hear about a new place I should try. So go ahead and tell me more…

Gardener's Feast Tamales

Gardener’s Feast
Gluten Free: Officially
My all time favorite breakfast is a tamale (or 2) from Gardener’s Feast. I had just about given up on finding a good tamale in Austin until I met Adrian and Mariana, who make THE best tamales in town. This lovely and wonderful couple sells tamales, tortillas, salsas and gorditas at several of the farmers’ markets in Austin and around. I make my way down to the SFC Farmers’ Market Downtown (or at Sunset Valley) every Saturday morning for my black bean and goat cheese tamale. They’ve got plenty of vegetarian, meaty, and vegan options. They are gluten free, naturally so your gluten-full friends won’t be scared to try them too.

Counter Cafe
Gluten Free: Officially, no menu
Counter Cafe is an Austin must. It’s my runner up as favorite breakfast spot. It’s a tiny little diner on Lamar in the Downtown area and they focus on quality ingredients. They all knew what I was talking about when I said “gluten free please.” Everything is kept separate, fried separately and they know what you can and cannot eat. Their sausage is made in-house with farm fresh pork. Yes please.

Snack Bar
Gluten Free: Unofficially

I love these folks. They’ve got a tasty breakfast and the best millet bread this side of the Mississippi. The owners know what’s GF and what’s not, but I had some sketchy server experiences, so just be sure before you dive in.

Scrambled Eggs and Rice Bread at Galaxy Cafe


Galaxy Cafe
Gluten Free: Officially, menu
If you’re looking for a nice, honest, simple meal, head to the Galaxy Cafe in Clarksville. I love the atmosphere, the “regulars” who are there every morning and I like to get my own coffee. They have a GF menu and know what they’re talking about. Order simple: I got scrambled eggs and rice bread.

Blue Dahlia
Gluten Free: Unofficially
I had to throw this spot in as well because it makes for such a nice Sunday morning brunch. They don’t have a ton of gluten free options, but what they do have, they do a good job of: frittatas, big ol’ salads, soups. My friends and I make a habit of spending a leisurely breakfast here and while they eat their croissants, I take hefty spoonfuls of the nutella on the table. It’s wrong, but I don’t care.

Sweet Potato Hash at 24 Diner


24 Diner
Gluten Free: Officially, menu
24 Diner is a great Central Austin spot and you can get breakfast any time of day. They do indeed have a gluten free menu and it’s tasty as all get up. Expect a wait at the usual busy times. Order the sweet potato hash with eggs. Tasty business.

Casa De Luz
Gluten Free: Super Officially
Casa de Luz gets my vote any day. While I often don’t go for the “vegetarian” “macro this” or “healthful that”, they really do a wonderful job and I always feel great when I walk out of there. They recently stopped doing their Sunday morning brunch, but breakfast is still oh so worth it. Generous portions, all gluten free, all tasty.

Tortilla at Ate Cafe


Ate Cafe
Gluten Free: Unofficially
I’m going to be totally transparent here and I’m just a wee bit biased: Ate Cafe has the best breakfast around. They also have the best sandwiches, but that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about their perfectly poached eggs with parsley oil. Their amazing bacon, frittatas, soups, and various specials. They ARE also a bakery, so be prepared for bread smells, very few of which you and I can eat. What I like best is that this is my sister’s place so they all know what you can and can’t eat. Just ask, they’ll tell you. PS- if they have their Spanish Tortilla on the menu that day, GET IT! Or order a whole one ahead of time as I have done.

The Steeping Room
Gluten Free: Officially
If you’re at the Domain this is a great stop for breakfast for us GF’ers. They mark what can be made gf and what is already gf. They sometimes have an amazing ginger scone and clotted cream too. Their marked bakery items are awfully good. Yum.

Bouldin Creek
Gluten Free: Officially
I have to include Bouldin Creek Cafe in this breakfast posting because they do a good job with dietary restrictions and tend to know what they’re talking about. And their coffee is tasty. They do a couple of fun, naturally gf treats too: like their grit cake.

Thai Fresh
Gluten Free: Officially (most of the menu)

I love Jam and the folks at Thai Fresh. Okay, to be honest, I hate that they microwave their dishes when you’re eating in. BUT their stuff is so fresh it rarely has to be nuked, and I always opt for whatever they’re just putting out. Jam is fantastic about labeling everything GF, and the Thai omelette is to die for. She has also started selling gf chicken and waffles (amazing waffles) at the market downtown.


The Original Pancake House
Gluten Free: Officially, menu

Craving pancakes? Check this out. I loved the booths, the waitresses with personality, and the gf pancakes were pretty tasty too. I double checked that they used a different batter in different griddles and she assured me yes indeed. I felt like I was in a small town, until I looked outside at KFC and Beach Tan in the mini mall. It hit the spot.

Wildwood Art Cafe
Gluten Free: EVERYTHING officially
I can’t write about Gluten Free breakfasts in Austin without including these guys. The times I’ve been in there they have been very patient with my questions, given me samples, and are all around lovely folks. However, I just can’t get myself to like their products. I know you GF folks out there may be shunning me right now, but I just can’t dig it.

You haven’t eaten in Austin ’til you’ve had breakfast tacos of course. Here are just a couple of spots around town.

Sam

Taco Deli
Gluten Free: Officially

Head to Taco Deli for a mighty tasty breakfast taco. They know what’s gluten free, they’ll label it, and they won’t balk at your intolerances. They also sell at many of the farmers’ markets in town. If you go downtown or to the Triangle, tell Sam I sent you. Picadillo, ground bison, or portabello. All tasty on corn.

La Cocina de Consuelo
Gluten Free: Unofficially

These guys are my favorite sit down breakfast taco in town. They’ve got fantastic corn tortillas, great fillings, unlimited pour it yourself coffee, and Consuela herself is always in to take your order and whip up the tortillas.

Marcelino’s Pan Y Vino
Gluten Free: Unofficially

If you’re on my side of town, please don’t miss Marcelino’s. They’ve been around for ages, make everything from scratch, and have the best attitudes in town. Just expect a little grease, a little extra spice, and a lot of bacon fat on everything. I watch them make the tortillas- they are most definitely gluten free, BUT everything is cooked on the same comal.

While I do like a good breakfast taco, if I want a big ol’ Mexican breakfast, I tend to opt for a plate of the good stuff: eggs, rancheros, tortillas, beans, rice, salsa. If you’re looking for an old school Tex-Mex breakfast plate, here are my favorites, there’s just no guarantee it will be officially gluten free: Dario’s, Cisco’s, Mi Madre’s, and the options really are endless here in Austin…

If you want some fancy pants Mexican brunch, I love Fonda San Miguel and La Condesa. Both great options, and both offer lots of naturally gluten free choices.

A shout out to Mr Natural as well for their chocolate muffin. But only their chocolate muffin. And a final shout out to Wheatsville for their Wheat Free Wednesdays. Try their zucchini bread. It’s my Wednesday morning routine.

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About Salts Kitchen

I write. I eat. And I cook. I write about what I cook and eat. I love finding new foods, being inspired to make something I've never made, and most of all I love feeding other people things that they have never tried before. I like disproving myths about food and what it means to eat well, to eat healthy, often on a budget, and for some of us- to eat with a bunch of food allergies (and still eat well!).
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12 Responses to Gluten Free Breakfast in Austin, Naturally

  1. Rebeca Thanks for your compliments, we will be working hard with quality and tasty products for you and all our customers. We really appreciate you mentioned us in your blog.. thanks and see you around on the markets… bye.

    • Salts Kitchen says:

      Thanks Adrian, I’m glad you all liked it. I can’t say enough about my favorite Saturday breakfast!
      Rebecca

  2. While I am not gluten intolerant, I AM a fan of a good breakfast, and what a coup to be able to share these spots with those of my friends that are. Thank you!

    • Salts Kitchen says:

      Thank you! I know from some your blog posts, we definitely appreciate some of the same great food out there. Good food is good food!
      Rebecca

  3. Wow, what a comprehensive guide, thank you! How about a couple examples of what you like at Blue Dahlia, 24 Diner, and a couple other places that sound so tempting?

    • Salts Kitchen says:

      Good call Ma. I like my 2 poached eggs, potatoes, and sausage everywhere I go (I know, pull my hair and make sure it’s me), but these places have even more that I love.

  4. Pingback: Gluten-Free Austin Lunch Dining Guide 2012 «

  5. zestybeandog says:

    I LOVE some Bouldin Creek!

  6. Your list rocks! I have learned of a few new places, thanks! I am a recent Santa Monica transplant and was so happy to find they offer a gluten free breakfast burrito at their Farmer’s market.

    • Salts Kitchen says:

      Thanks Nicole! I am actually a transplant FROM Santa Monica. Please oh pretty please go to Harry’s Berry’s and Pudwill’s (vendors at the SM market) in the next few weeks and load up on all the berries you can possibly eat on my behalf. Enjoy Santa Monica and thanks for stopping by my blog!

  7. shefskitchen says:

    Rebecca, this is a nice list of places and I love your very specific recommendations. Works for us non GF people too since there is always someone GF we know. I’ve got to try Ate Cafe. And i cannot wait to try those tamales from Gardener’s Feast!!

  8. Pingback: Gluten-Free Austin Lunch Dining Guide 2012 | Blinded by the Bite! ™

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