I don’t know about you, but in my Before Times, I relied heavily on fast food. I was always rushing from one place to another, grabbing a bite between commitments, or just too dang tired to cook–let alone do the dishes! Fast food was a great option for my busy life.
But then my GFA (gluten-free adventure) began, and it looked like my fast food days were over.
For a while there, it felt like the only safe options for me were ice cubes and the universal plain salad.
I figured out how to make sure I set time aside to cook for myself. I learned how to make quick dinners out of a protein (like marinated chicken breast or salmon), some veggies, and some grain (like rice or polenta), and eventually I was able to enjoy more complex meals as I became more comfortable in the kitchen.
But there were still days where fast food would have been really useful.
Nowadays, some fast food chains have started offering options to accommodate us Gluten-Free Adventurers.
I love living in the future!
But it’s still not all of them, so you do have to do your own sleuthing.
Here are some tips to find out if your fast food meal is safe:
- Look up the menu/ingredients/allergen statements online before you go to the restaurant.
- Ask the staff if they have gluten-free options. They may be able to offer suggestions or provide information on which items are safe to eat, but you’ll still probably know more about gluten than they will. Still, it’s good to ask. Some chains/locations are better about training their staff than others
- Avoid items that are breaded or fried. Most likely they contain gluten.
- Stick to items that are made with whole, unprocessed ingredients, such as salads (ugh!) or grilled meats, but watch out for add-ons, such as croutons, or even dressings and marinades. Simple baked potatoes are also frequently a good option.
- Watch out for brown sauces. Those usually contain soy sauce, which is commonly made with wheat.
It’s always a good idea to do your research before you go to any restaurant, fast or otherwise, just to make sure that they have gluten-free options that meet your needs.
I asked the Adventurers in our Facebook group what their favorite GF Fast Food was. Here are their responses:
One of my personal favorites is Chipotle’s Burrito Bowls. And while I used to love getting Chinese takeaway, I’ve switched to Thai, because they frequently have plenty of GF options–including noodles!
Just be sure to keep asking what is safe and how they prevent cross-contamination.
P.S. Something I love doing is helping gluten-free people eat good and feel good. I’m looking to create my next service, but in order to do that, I’d really love your help. I’d love to hear your own GFA and how I can help serve the gluten-free community. Book a call with me and let’s chat!