Dining out with food allergies or a specific diet can be challenging. But preparation is the key, think and plan ahead, so you can set yourself up for success! Don't be afraid to call and ask. Whenever I plan a meal out, I try to go somewhere that is on my 'safe list' or I call ahead, let them know of my food requirements and judge their reaction. Usually if they seem like it's a bit difficult, I try to go somewhere else. Especially with allergies, if they don't seem like they understand what you are after, they probably don't, and chances are you'll wind up with a horrible stomach ache, or worse.
Now I have to mention here, that I eat as much organic food as I can, but I'm not on a strict 100% organic diet. Some of my favourite places to eat at, are organic, some are partially organic and some aren't. I'm ok with that. Just work out what it is you need, and find places that can help!
My advice is to have your own little 'safe list' in your area. That way if you're out and about and starving hungry, you know where the closest place is to get great food.
If you're on the Gold Coast like me, you might find this list handy!
(Check beforehand for opening hours)
PARADISE POINT (This is my local area)
The Gelati Shop - They now serve cold pressed juices. They also have a selection of boosters to add to your smoothies including, acai powder, spirulina, hemp seeds etc
Flannery's - Beautiful Acai bowls, fresh smoothies, organic coffee and a small selection of sweet treats. Open 7 days. The staff here are so lovely too!
Giru Kana Cafe- Open Monday to Saturday for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Vegetarian cafe with 'homemade' style hot food, and fresh salads. They also have a selection of sweets including some raw options.
Clean Eats Gold Coast at The Marina Mirage Farmers Market. Beautiful treats every Saturday morning that are gluten free, dairy free, refined sugar free and full of flavour! Most items are raw too.
Cardamom Pod - A really nice restaurant right in the heart of Broadbeach with delicious vegetarian, gluten free, dairy free options. Both hot and cold dishes, and a huge selection of deserts and mocktails. Open for lunch and dinner.
Mandala Organic Arts Cafe- This is one of my favourites, there in indoor seating or outside in their garden with the grass between your toes! Everything I've eaten here is beautiful. They also have live music some evenings, so check in advance.
Ashy Bines Clean Eating Kitchen - Whatever your thoughts on Ashy are, the food in this place is delicious and nutritious, and the raw chef behind the menu is lovely and obviously very talented. Plus not one thing on the menu contains gluten or dairy (unless you add moo juice to your coffee). Open for breakfast and lunch 7 days.
BSKT - More of a restaurant style setting with a huge menu with lots of options for the picky eater. The menu is really easy to read with little icons for everything including 'high protein' options. They're open for breakfast and lunch, and dinner on Friday Saturday. They also run yoga and pilates classes upstairs! No takeaway food.
Nobby's Arc - This is great if you're going out with a group of friends who don't understand why you don't eat 'real food'. Their gluten free pizzas are great, and they are pretty flexible with toppings and changes to the menu items.
The Fruit Shop- The make yummy fresh juice and Acai bowls with a takeaway only option.
Govindas - Vegetarian delights, both hot and cold, with a selection of gluten and dairy free dishes. It's always really busy, so make sure you don't go here in a hurry. (Cash only)
The Barefoot Barista - Beautiful food and juices, in a really relaxed environment. I'm told the coffee is amazing too. They also make a mean gluten free veggie burger!
Somewhere I'm yet to try, but have heard great things about is, RAW From Earth and Water in Burleigh Heads, have you been there? What did you think?
Share your favourite places to eat, even if they're not on the Gold Coast! You might help someone out in your area.