Food & Drink

Start a Diet Riot

Not-obvious spots for vegetarian and gluten-free food

secret veg and gluten-free menus around town!

Your current dietary classification, PSPAVPBGFBDHC (paleo, sometimes pescatarian, always vegan, plant-based, gluten-free but don’t have celiac), makes eating out seemingly impossible.

Fear not. Alternative menus exist at some of the city’s better restaurants. You just have to know to ask. Below are a few of our favorites.

Girl & the Goat
The restaurant known for its innovative bread program has a separate gluten-free menu.
Wow factor: Master baker Greg Wade crafts loaves every day using sorghum instead of flour.
Why, thank you: The kitchen helpfully marks each dish on the menu with asterisks, noting use of fish sauce, soy, and oil that may contain gluten.
Eat up: Pan-roasted arctic char, beef short ribs with dirty fried rice, cult-followed kohlrabi salad, ham frites.
Up next: Little Goat offers a similar menu upon request.

Bavette’s Bar & Boeuf
While friends feast on foie, you dive into the vegetarian menu, available on request.
Roasted tomato salad, mushroom stroganoff with sherry cream, potatoes every which way (mashed, loaded, baked).
Last word:
A slice of sky-high lemon meringue pies makes meat-eating friends wish they’d had what you had.

Behind its rich comfort food exterior lies a tasty, equally hearty vegetarian alternative.
Chef Ashlee Aubin was the former chef de partie at Alinea.
Chow down:
Black kale flatbread with raclette, house-made spaghetti with tomato cream, and sweet potato ravioli make meat a distant memory.

Au Cheval
What: The city’s finest diner (famous for its burger) has both vegan and gluten-free menus. Just ask.
For the vegetarians: Triple-decker grilled cheese, salads galore, omelet du jour (our personal fave), smashed potatoes.
For the gluten averse: Sandwiches served atop crispy hash, griddled bratwurst with smashed potatoes, chopped chicken liver with salted butter.
Awww: A round of pickle backs eases the pain of not being able to eat the mille-feuille.

Photo: Kari Shaflen / Courtesy of Au Cheval

3335 N Halsted St
bt Aldine Ave & Roscoe St
Chicago, IL 60657
820 W Randolph St
@ Green St
Chicago, IL 60607
218 W Kinzie St
bt Wells & Franklin Sts
Chicago, IL 60654
800 W Randolph St
@ Halsted St
Chicago, IL 60607
809 W Randolph St
@ Halsted St
Chicago, IL 60607