Your search for gluten free meals in California will probably start with a study of information that these celiac support groups have published:
Gluten Free in San Diego. This marvelous collection of information includes coverage of DisneyLand and the other southern California tourist attractions.
Ventura County Celiacs. Great information covering the area just north of Los Angeles.
Central Coast Celiacs.. “San Luis Obispo county and beyond”
Sacramento Area Celiacs. El Dorado, Placer, Sacramento, and Yolo counties.
North Bay Celiacs. Marin, Napa, and Sonoma counties
Two cities are conspicuously absent from this list. I agree completely with the blogger who wonders why “San Francisco has so few gluten free opportunities.” Los Angeles is close enough to both the Ventura County and San Diego to be mentioned in their listings. I’m sure that there should be many more items on the list..
Here is a partial list of independently owned gluten free restaurants and bakeries in California:
Berkeley. Restaurant Gratitude, with restaurants in Berkeley, Healdsburg,San Rafael, San Francisco (2 locations). Click on the restaurant name for details about locations. The main page indicates that the restaurants are gluten free, but does not give specific details.
Costa Mesa. Newport Rib Company. You can link to their gluten free and celiac (GF/CF) menu and see the addresses of all three locations.
Davis. Farmers Kitchen and Natural Food Works. A bakery and café. The bakery serves gluten free sourdough bread. Scroll to the bottom of the page to read more gluten free information about this restaurant.
Folsom. An enthusiastic customer wrote this about The Ugly Mug Cafe, 157 Iron Point Road: “My husband and daughter went there last week…It was the first time our daughter was able to ‘just eat’ a premade sandwich. She also liked the gluten free muffin.”
Healdsburg, Cafe Gratitude. See the cafe’s listing in Berkeley for information.
Ladera Ranch. Newport Rib Company. This link will enable to get the addresses of their three locations and link to their gluten and celiac menu (gf/cf).
La Jolla. Julian Bakery. sells gluten free products at its bakery in La Jolla and through local grocers. Also ships its bakery products.
Long Beach. Another Newport Rib Company restaurant is located here.
Los Angeles. Sun Power Natural. Located across the street from Universal Studios. This establishment was recommended enthusiastically in an e-mail from a member of America’s gluten free community. Since the restaurant does not mention its gluten free status on-line, I sent them an e-mail on 9/14/09 asking for confirmation.
Poway, Brick Oven Wood Fired Pizza. Be sure to move from this page to their article describing the procedures for avoiding cross contamination. These people know and care abut us!
Redondo Beach. Fresh Brothers Pizza. For information, see the listing for Manhatten Beach.
San Rafael. Cafe Gratitude.Look at Cafe Gratitude’s listing in Berkeley for details..
San Francisco. Cafe Gratitude.(2 locations). Check the listing for Cafe Gratitude in Berkeley for details.
San Francisco (Bay Area) Amici’s, with twelve locations in the Bay Area. Gluten free pizzas are available at all their stores.
San Francisco (East Bay). The East Bay Express recently published an article about gluten free pizza opportunities in the East Bay. The article does not include specific addresses but local pizza-lovers should be able to uncover this information relatively easily.
Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods Market are your best sources for gluten free grocery shopping in California. and are located throughout the state. Click on the store names to read my articles on these establishments. Here are other possibilities:
The Sacramento Food Coop may meet your shopping needs.
Gluten Free Specialty, also located in Sacramento, recently opened. They advertise themselves as “the first all gluten free market in California”.
Elliott’s Natural Foods, 641 East Bidwell, Folsom, was recommended in an e-mail from an enthusiastic customer.
Co-Opportunity, a natural foods market in Santa Monica, states that gluten free products are available but the site does not publish a specific list. I received an e-mail from a very satisfied customer who mentioned that the shelves are clearly labeled.
GF Meals.com ships fully prepared meals nationally and has a retail outlet in the Woodland Hills.
As everywhere else in America, chain restaurants will provide most of your restaurant meals. These restaurant chains provide gluten free meals in California: Carino’s, Chili’s. Claim Jumper, Lone Star Steak House and Saloon, Outback Steakhouse, Romano’s Macaroni Grill, Uno Chicago Grill, Yard House. Click here for menus and locations. These establishments will serve you well!
Obviously, this article is not complete. We need help from people who have first hand experience with these establishments or with other celiac friendly assets. My hunch is that this article will grow. If you have information to share, please leave a comment at the bottom of this or any article or use the button in the middle column of this page to send me an e-mail.
Information added: 03/30/09