Allergen-free restaurants for NYC kids
No peanuts? No gluten? No problem---if you take your kid to one of these allergen-conscious eateries.
Tue Aug 16 2011
Finicky eaters are difficult, but finding something tasty for a little one with allergies—whether to gluten, nuts or dairy—is a whole other challenge. Drop by one of these city eateries, and you won't have to spend your night attempting to master spelt flour.
The ever-popular Lower East Side vegan bakery is beloved for its cupcakes and other I-can't-believe-it's-dairy-free treats. A second branch, decked out like a retro diner counter, opened in summer 2011 at Rockaway Beach's thriving 96th Street concession stand. The assortment of mini doughnuts sells out fast, so come early for kid-favorite flavors like cinnamon sugar and chocolate glazed. * 248 Broome St between Ludlow and Orchard Sts (212-677-5047, babycakesnyc.com). * Beach 96th St concession at the Boardwalk, Rockaway Beach, Queens
When kids with celiac disease have a burger craving, ordering one sans bun is the norm. But at this stylishly decorated joint, whose comfy booths and views of the grill suggest a cheerful roadside stop, there's no need for such deprivation—or a knife and fork. Squishy gluten-free buns made with rice flour are available for both the Black Angus beef patties and the hot dogs. And don't worry about those crispy, hand-cut fries either—they've done time in a designated gluten-free fryer. 25-36 Jackson Ave at 44th Dr, Long Island City, Queens (718-392-0424, theburgergarage.com)
If you're pressed for time—and what busy parent isn't?—let Pedro Arroba and Bruce Bassman whip up your child's gluten-free meals. The pair make savory goodies, like crusty baguettes and spinach-ricotta ravioli, in their takeout-only, tree nut--free kitchen. Place an order in advance and dinner will be waiting for you when you come to pick it up. Can't make it to Brooklyn? Arroba and Bassman ship nationwide—including, of course, to all five boroughs. 294 Third Ave at Carroll St, Park Slope, Brooklyn (718-369-7444, everybodyeats-inc.com)
Preserving the authentic Neapolitan pizza-making tradition is a priority here, and the chewy, blistered crusts draw crowds of eager eaters. Typically, a pie would be verboten for those eschewing gluten, but if your family swings by any day of the week they'll have six pizzas to choose from, including the Margherita—strewn with tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil and extra virgin olive oil—are available with a gluten-free crust made from corn, soy, rice and potato starch. 271 Bleecker St at Morton St (212-243-1500, kestepizzeria.com)
The granddaddy of gluten-free restaurants in New York, Risotteria boasts an extensive menu of four-slice pizzette, brownies and other sweet treats—and, of course, the signature, creamy rice dish. Before leaving, snatch up a take-home supply of salted bread sticks—who needs Goldfish? 270 Bleecker St at Morton St (212-924-6664, risotteria.com)
SUN IN BLOOM
At yoga instructor Aimee Follette's self-described "gluten-free, vegan holistic eco-eatery," an airy, tranquil space, the open-minded sons and daughters of Park Slope devour house-made coconut kefir yogurt, snack on chipotle pate spring rolls and tuck into rosemary dijan scramblese with sundried tomato and roasted pumpkin. Follette doesn't shy away from sweets either, using gluten-free flour in goodies like moist banana bread with chocolate chips. 460 Bergen St between Fifth and Flatbush Aves, Park Slope, Brooklyn (718-622-4303, suninbloom.com)
TU-LU'S GLUTEN-FREE BAKERY
In 2008, chef Tully Lewis learned of her gluten intolerance. Rather than mourning the loss of dessert forever, she began experimenting with different flours to re-create her favorite indulgences. After selling treats wholesale to purveyors like Zabar's, the Gramercy Tavern alum opened a storefront location in 2010. Here, kids' sugar cravings meet their match in vegan agave brownies and Snickerdoodle cookies, plus an array of cupcakes that can be ordered dairy-free—perfect for your child's next birthday party. 338 E 11th St between First and Second Aves (212-777-2227, tu-lusbakery.com).