Two people at a table have their phones out using the Foodini app with three plates of food on the table including fries, a wrap and a salad
Photograph: Supplied/Foodini

Foodini is matching people with dietary needs to spots they can safely dine at

The app matches users with restaurants that can serve them safely and inclusively, catering to more than 40 dietary needs


Dylan McDonnell launched the allergy app Foodini back in 2020, after a bout of unpleasant dining experiences as someone with coeliac disease. For most people with dietary needs, dining out isn’t always the great experience it should be: making sure food is safe to eat and that the menu features enough inclusive options is a stressful and time-consuming exercise. 

Foodini has just made it to Melbourne, helping foodies with food sensitivities find menus that are tailored to their dietary needs, and taking some of the stress out of searching. The app matches users with restaurants that can serve them safely and inclusively, catering to more than 40 dietary needs including everything from coeliac disease to lactose intolerance and FODMAPers.

Accredited practising dietitians are responsible for onboarding venues to the platform, after a thorough review of the menus and food practices. All users need to do is create a profile detailing their dietary needs, and they’re matched to restaurants, cafes and other eateries in their area.

“Food is the body’s fuel source and it’s also a key part of culture, gatherings, socialising and celebrating which I believe everyone should enjoy. Our app allows all people, regardless of their needs, to enjoy the experience of dining out with comfort and confidence using reliable, transparent and credible information,” says McDonnell. 

Foodini-user Kate has a husband and son who both have coeliac disease. What was once a lengthy process of researching online, checking the menu and phoning a staff member is now as simple as logging onto the app and checking matched restaurants. 

“Foodini has given us the confidence to dine out again - knowing dietitians are assessing menus and matching them to our gluten-free needs has taken the admin out of eating out,” says Kate. 

The app has rolled out across Sydney and Melbourne, with the rest of Australia set to have access by the end of the year. You can download the free Foodini app on the Play Store or App Store. 

Looking for allergen-friendly feeds? Here are some of our favourite Melbourne restaurants that cater to dietary needs.

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