In this gluten-free London guide, I'm sharing where I ate when visiting with celiac disease, and the restaurants you should definitely try when traveling here!
This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure page for more information. This post was last updated in June of 2023.
About This Gluten-Free Guide to London
Ahh, London! The first city I visited in Europe at the tender age of 15. I didn't have celiac disease then, and was fortunate to visit as part of a school trip. Back then, I ate whatever I wanted and never had to think twice about the food entering my mouth.
Today, of course, that's a different story. And that's why in this guide, I'm sharing the restaurants, bakeries, and places you should definitely add to your list when visiting London with celiac!
In May of 2023, I decided (after almost 20 years had gone by!) to revisit London (instead of just passing through the airports) and discover what gluten-free food was waiting for me. Having multiple gluten-free and celiac friends that live in the UK, I knew taking a trip here would not only be a great way to research the food scene to share with you here on the blog, but also to connect with friends! And that's exactly what I did during this 5-day trip.
Heads up! This guide is not a complete, comprehensive guide of all the gluten-free restaurants & bakeries, or places with GF options in London. London is MASSIVE. I'm sharing the places that I love visiting and that I think you will too. If you're looking to expand beyond what's listed here, at the bottom of this guide you'll find links to other gluten-free & celiac bloggers that live in London and can provide more insight.
NOTE & DISCLAIMER
Everyone’s experience with celiac disease is different. Dedicated gluten-free facilities are usually the safest places to go, and you’ll see those listed here. For non-dedicated facilities and restaurants, I only recommend places I have visited or where clear protocols are in place for celiac diners.
My experience is not your experience. This is a guide – a list of suggestions to point you in the right direction. Restaurants can change. Use your own judgment and only eat where you feel safe doing so.
I've created this London map for you to help you find the restaurants, bakeries, and cafes listed below!
Gluten-Free London Restaurant Guide
- About This Gluten-Free Guide to London
- Gluten-Free London Restaurant Guide
- 100% Gluten-Free Bakery in London
- 100% Gluten-Free Restaurants in London
- 100% GF Food Stalls at Borough Market
- Restaurants With Gluten-Free Options in London
- Gluten-Free High Tea Experience
- Supermarkets & Grocery Stores
- More London Gluten-Free Places
- Looking for more gluten-free restaurant guides around the globe?
Arriving, Staying & Getting Around London
London has two main airports - Gatwick and Heathrow. Both are a taxi or train ride away from the heart of London: Gatwick being farther (about 45 minutes by car) and Heathrow being closer (about 15 minutes by car). I've flown into and through London on multiple occasions and find both airports easy to navigate.
My Hotel: For this trip, I chose to stay just north of Kensington Gardens at the La Suite West Hotel. It was within 1 minute walking distance to a tube stop (excellent location) and within 5-10 minutes walk of a grocery store. The hotel had good ratings on Booking.com and was offering a discount, so that's why I picked it. It was clean, comfortable, and the staff was extremely attentive. While they offered breakfast at my hotel each morning, I did not partake as I was exploring the food in the city/eating out. So I cannot speak to if they had gluten-free options because I knew there was plenty of gluten-free food to try around the city!
London itself is a very large city, but getting around it is not difficult. The Tube, or Underground system, is well organized and simple to follow - exactly how I remembered it being back in 2004. London is also a very walkable city - with public parks and outdoor spaces and plenty of areas for pedestrians. You can also use the bus system or even hop on one of the tour buses to see some of the sights like Big Ben, Parliament, etc. if that's of interest to you!
One thing to be mindful of walking around London that as an American, might take you a moment to really sink into your brain is looking right before crossing a street, since the cars are coming the opposite way! This especially important after arriving, since you will probably be jet-lagged and tired. Luckily, most streets actually have this written at crosswalks to remind you.
How To Find Gluten-Free Food in London
While this guide will give you my personal recommendations to point you in the right direction for where to eat in London, you might need to explore other restaurants.
I get it. London is an enormous city with a big history, and because of that, you're probably going to need more options than what's listed here! In my guides, I don't tell you every single possible place to visit for gluten-free food in a destination. Instead, I share with you the places that had good food, solid protocols for celiacs, and where I had a good experience, so that you can consider them for your own itinerary.
But if you need more ideas for eating in London with celiac...I highly recommend doing your research on an app/website like FindMeGlutenFree.
FindMeGlutenFree can help you get an idea what other fabulous gluten-free restaurants & safe food choices are in London and the surrounding areas. And with a Premium Subscription, you can filter by most celiac friendly, see what's open now (so you don't drive all the way to a bakery for breakfast and discover it's closed), and what's gluten-free in the direction you're headed. It's like Google Maps, but a gluten-free version. And no Ads!
I've been a FMGF user for over a decade, but I think their Premium version is much more effective. Take $5 off a Premium Subscription with the code THENOMADICFITZ to make your trip to London a gluten-free success!
Celiac Disease in the UK
Unlike the United States, I've noticed that celiac (written coeliac across the pond) is much more understood and recognized, especially in restaurant settings. That's not to say that the UK is perfect or that people living with celiac or food allergies don't have challenges. These challenges exist everywhere, but coming from America, it's obvious that in some ways, the UK does some things better than we do.
For starters, food labels. I found them much easier to read in the UK, especially in supermarkets or stores like Marks & Spencer. Allergens are clearly listed so you know if something is gluten-free, or not. You can also look for the cross-wheat symbol, which indicates gluten-free in the UK and many parts of Europe:
Secondly, allergen lists. These were often available in restaurants, hotels, and even in airport lounges. Each item on the menu would have a number or letter attached to it indicating a certain allergen, so you would know if that particular food or dish contained gluten, wheat, or something else. This was extremely clear and helpful to understand ingredients, and something the USA could learn from.
Finally, awareness of celiac disease overall in London was fairly high at the places I dined in. Of course, dedicated gluten-free places were the easiest and not an issue at all. But in the places that were not 100% gluten-free, I found the staff understood celiac, cross-contact (called cross-contamination in the UK), and were cognizant of things like shared fryers, spaces, and prep areas. These were all reassuring signs.
Again, no destination is perfect, and people with celiac face difficulties all over the globe - even in London. But thanks to organizations like Coeliac UK, who offer a list of accredited restaurants they have vetted and trained (Just like the Italian Celiac Association does in Italy), they are definitely making things a bit easier for UK coeliacs. And as a visitor, we get to benefit as well.
Dining Out In London With Celiac Disease
As I recommend to all of my clients for dining out with celiac, you want to make sure to clarify what gluten-free means when you order.
Based on my 14 years with celiac disease and my multiple restaurant allergen trainings, I suggest using the words severe gluten allergy when dining out, and then clarifying celiac disease. Also, be sure to tell your server about how you need your food prepared to prevent cross-contamination (In the USA, we use two terms to distinguish between cross-contact, when allergen comes in contact with a food, and contamination, when a bacteria/virus comes in contact with a food. In the UK, they largely just use cross-contamination. Please be aware of this so you are not surprised hearing it from restaurant servers.)
100% Gluten-Free Bakery in London
I know there are a LOT of gluten-free bakeries in London, but if you only hit one of them...let me recommend Libby's. I visited both of their locations (One in Notting Hill, the other in Belsize Park, you can find them on the map I shared above!) Both are 100% gluten-free, of course!
While originally Libby's was a gluten and sugar-free bakery, they've since incorporated more sugar into some of their baked goods for flavor and richness. They make incredible pastries including croissants and pain au chocolat, as well as cakes, and they offer breads, bagels, toasts, yogurts, and fruit for breakfast/lunch. This is a great grab and go kind of place but they also have sit-down options too with a small area of tables and chairs.
The staff here was so welcoming, the pastries were fantastic (the croissant and pain au chocolat were both so flaky, I felt like double checking it was gluten-free!). I definitely say this place lives up to the hype and is worth a visit when you're in London. The croissants & pain au chocolat are heavenly. I've made gluten-free croissants myself from scratch, and know how difficult they can be to perfect. Libby's knocks them out of the (Belsize) park.
More Gluten-Free Bakeries In London
Vida, Manna Dew, Klear Labs, and Cream Dream are also 100% Gluten-free. I just didn't have time to make it to them all! Many bakeries around London are also vegan bakeries too, in case that's something of interest to you! Personally, I find vegan baked goods to not be my personal favorite and prefer eggs and butter in my sweets, but that's just me.
100% Gluten-Free Restaurants in London
Wow, this place had the most beautiful plates and fun dishes to try! Andina Spitalfields is a 100% gluten-free Peruvian restaurant located on the East End of London. They also offer vegan and vegetarian options. I met up with Morgan of How To Coeliac for dinner here and we spent 4 hours chatting over small plates and pisco sours. It was wonderful!
This is definitely a sharing type restaurants. Plates are small and meant to be sampled with friends or family, so Morgan and I did that by getting quite a few things to much on. We had raspberry pisco sours (Pisco sours are very popular in Peru - Dylan had them frequently during our time there!) We got the pork belly bites, chicken chifa bites, and a plate of chips (fries) to share. For dessert we had the passionfruit and chocolate mousses. Everything was delicious, unique, and with beautiful presentation!
Andina offers a really fantastic brunch option but since we were here for dinner only, I didn't have a chance to check that out. But for a meal you can share (which is so often, not something we can do with celiac) with family or friends and lots of yummy bites to munch on, this place is definitely a great spot!
Before I talk about this incredible waffle place, I think I should warn you. I am not a huge waffle person. You could even say that I do not waffle when presented with the option of pancakes or waffles (Ha). I will choose pancakes 99% of the time.
HOWEVER, I may have had the most life-changing waffle ever at Utter Waffle, and therefore, cannot recommend this place enough. This is a waffle restaurant, meaning they do waffles right. And everything is gluten-free, so you know it's going to be good! They also have a dedicated vegan menu and many dairy-free options.
Multiple celiac & gluten-free friends who had been to Utter Waffle let me know that 1) It's a bit far to get to from central London, but worth the effort and 2) James, Jules & the Giant Peach was the waffle to eat. I took their advice and made the 30 minute trek to South London to visit this brunch spot and got that waffle with my dear friend Sarah of Endless Distances.
And the waffle was UNFREAKING BELIEVEABLE. And the presentation gorgeous as well! I ate every last bite of it, and could have licked the plate. To quote the menu, this waffle is, "a warm waffle coated in cinnamon sugar, topped with smoked bacon, caramelised peach, rosemary honey, cream-cheese-frosting & pistachio crumb." Would I normally put all of those things on a waffle? No. Do I recommend having all of these things on a waffle and would I eat 10 more of these? Hell yes.
Utter Waffle is a small place, so definitely look into making a reservation, especially on the weekends. They are known for breakfast & brunch, and also have a food truck available for hire for private events. The staff is friendly, the food was truly scrumptious, and I'd definitely go back here. Well worth the tube & rail trip to get here (took about 30 minutes from my hotel near Lancaster Gate/Kensington Gardens.)
Los Mochis is a 100% gluten-free Japanese-Mexican fusion restaurant located in Notting Hill. They have extensive seating both indoors and outdoors, and definitely a place to try for lunch or dinner. I decided to check this place out during my first day of arriving in London. In order to reset my body clock, I dropped my suitcase off at my hotel room and went out and walked a good 8 miles around London, checking out 3 different gluten-free places, to keep myself busy and not fall asleep. It helped and I was able to quickly adjust to the new time schedule.
Los Mochis has an extensive menu including brunch, lunch, and dinner options. Their menu is entirely gluten, nut and celery free. Their dishes contain a minimal amount of dairy, and all of their vegetarian options are also vegan for customer convenience. There's a large variety on the menu from sushi and sashimi to tacos and sides of guacamole. I had the carne asada tacos which were small and pricey but definitely delicious. This would be a place I'd probably come back to for dinner with a larger group of people. Since I was by myself and going on 25 minutes of sleep, I didn't eat that much (my stomach tends to feel a bit off when I've been awake for too long). But the tacos were definitely tasty!
Other places for 100% gluten-free food
NOTE: While I didn't visit them in London, Grom Gelato can also be found here! Yes, the same 100% gluten-free gelato place from Italy has storefronts in London and even Paris.
Paladar & Niche are also reported dedicated gluten-free restaurants in London! As I mentioned, I didn't have a chance to visit every place that offers gluten-free food in London, but these came up multiple times in my research.
100% GF Food Stalls at Borough Market
The London Borough Market is located just over the London Bridge on the south side of the Thames River. It's a public food market that is hundreds of years old and extremely popular for food stalls, fresh produce, meats, seafood, and specialty items. The market is open every day except Mondays, and gets especially crowded on the weekends! This is a great place to shop, meet a friend, or stroll around and see what food items are available. I'm going to highlight 2 specific stalls that offer 100% gluten-free food, but please note there are other stalls with gluten-free options at the market as well.
I visited the Borough Market on a Sunday morning with my friend Sarah of Endless Distances and her fiance. We had a casual stroll through the different stalls and shops with all of the local Londoners milling about. It was very cool!
FreeFrom Bakehouse is a 100% gluten-free baked goods stall at the Borough Market from Wednesday - Sunday. They specialize in exactly what their name says - baked goods that are free from allergens. While being 100% gluten-free, they also specialize in dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free, nut-free, and vegan cakes as well. All of the cakes and sweets they sell at their Borough Market stall are clearly labeled with any allergens they contain.
I specifically made a stop here because I was eager to try some cake after hearing really good things about this bakery! I got the Victoria Sponge which had a layer of raspberry jam and cream, and was both gluten and dairy-free. A little crumbly but super tasty and moist. Definitely a highlight of being able to go to a market like this and know there's a place you can get a sweet treat!
Khanom Krok is a 100% gluten-free Thai street food stall I only know about thanks to my friend Matt of Gluten-Free Street Gang! Once I heard "dedicated gluten-free" and "pad thai" used in the same sentence, I knew I had to check it out. So Sarah and I made a point of visiting here for some gluten-free Thai food!
Sarah and I both got pad thai to enjoy individually, and then shared/split some coconut pancakes and mango sticky rice. Everything was ready so quickly, and tasted exactly like what I remember trying in Thailand back in 2019. Street food isn't something that can always be a safe option for celiacs anywhere in the world (especially Southeast Asia) so to have a safe option like this right here in the Borough Market was such a speical treat.
For a more complete, in-depth guide as to the gluten-free options at the Borough Market, check out my friend Sarah's guide here.
Restaurants With Gluten-Free Options in London
The restaurants listed below are in London that are not 100% gluten-free, but offer celiac protocols or protocols to reduce cross-contact as well as gluten-free options on their menu. As always, dine out with caution and only eat where you feel comfortable doing so!
Holy Carrot is a vegan restaurant currently in Knightsbridge area of London but with plans of relocating to Notting Hill in autumn of 2023. Please check their website for the most up to date information about their restaurant opening!
Normally I'm not a huge fan of eating in vegan restaurants unless its a smoothie place. I like my protein and my dairy, thank you very much! However, I'm also a big fan of vegetables and having heard good things about the food at Holy Carrot, I decided to venture there and try it out. I had the chips with spicy aioli, a salad, and the roasted asparagus - a few small plates to munch on with some water. It was very good and the atmosphere was lovely. This is a place I would probably stop in for lunch again, but might be hungry afterward if I ate dinner here.
Note: FindMeGlutenFree had this listed as a dedicated gluten-free place. Upon inspection of the menu and speaking to the staff, I found out this is not entirely true. There are 2 gluten-filled items on the menu: a sourdough bread and a burger bun for their vegan burgers. However, the server did assure me that these items are handled separately. Everything else is gluten-free, which means you will have a LOT of options here.
For more information about Holy Carrot, please visit their website or follow them on Instagram. Remember they are in the process of moving as of me writing this guide, so reach out to them directly if you have questions!
Hobson's Fish & Chips
While many fellow celiacs had recommended the Mayfair Chippy as a great place for celiac safe fish & chips in London, unfortunately, they were PACKED when I tried to go with Matt of Gluten-Free Street Gang. So we quickly decided to reevaluate and had a picnic in Hyde Park with a Marks & Spencer gluten-free spread instead!
So a few nights later when I was still missing my fish and chips, I stumbled upon Hobson's, which was just a short 10-minute walk from my hotel in Porchester (fairly close to the Paddington Tube station, their other location is in SoHo) and offered dedicated fryers and a gluten-free batter for gluten-free fish and chips. This sounded like just the spot for me for a solo dinner, so off I went!
This is a sit-down and takeaway place with a small area in the back for sit-down meals. Hobson's is committed to using fresh fish from sustainable resources and their fish is delivered daily from a local London fish market. They also have an Allergen menu PDF available on their website for both locations as well so you know exactly what is in each dish.
I ordered the gluten-free fish and chips with a side of roasted vegetables. The fish was flaky, tender, and moist, and with a little squeeze of lemon on top, was exactly what I was hoping for! The chips were good too, and the vegetables were just because I was really needing them. I eat a lot of veggies at home so when I travel, I end up craving them if I've had a lot of carbs or sweets!
Dishoom is a staple Indian restaurant chain in London that is very famous. With such a large Indian population in the UK, Indian food is plentiful here and Dishoom is well-known for it. Having heard multiple members of the Confident Celiac Community mention this place, I decided to check it out for myself. I visited their King's Cross location, which was a 7-8 minute walk from King's Cross/St. Pancras Station, where I waited in line for an hour to have my photo at Platform 9 ¾. Because Harry Potter is life, duh!
The one thing I will say about Dishoom was that the staff was very attentive and my waiter was awesome - even though their menu was listed as gluten-intolerant, not gluten-free. He literally sat down at my table with me and explained their menu to me, what dishes would be safe, which to be mindful of (Like avoiding a certain dish because it is prepared right next to where they make naan), and how they handle allergens in the kitchen, and how they cook their items that are grilled. Dishoom has multiple menus available on their website, including gluten intolerant, dairy-intolerant, and vegan.
I opted for the Chicken Ruby in a red curry sauce with a side of basmati rice. It was the perfect amount of food and had just the right amount of spice for me (mild, my nose was a little runny but my tongue was not on fire). And that's just about how much spice I like in my curry, so it was delicious!
While there were quite a few desserts on the menu, I was quite full and just had a cup of masala chai instead. It reminded me of all the chai I drank in Nepal while hiking the Annapurna Base Camp trek, and brought back a lot of memories. Dishoom would be a wonderful place to bring family or friends, as it has a lively atmosphere and plenty of indoor and outdoor seating. I really enjoyed this restaurant, the decor, and learning the history about it just by reading the menu.
Honest Burgers is a chain restaurant in London serving, you guessed it - burgers! But the great part about this place is that they have multiple locations and excellent gluten-free options, including gluten-free buns, fryers for fries and onion rings, and gluten-free sauces too!
Sarah of Endless Distances and I met here for dinner at their Mayfair location. We ate outside and had two juicy, yummy burgers with fries. Their menu is extremely detailed about what can be made gluten-free which you can view here. This is a place for sit-down or takeaway, or you could order through one of the food delivery apps like UberEats or Deliveroo.
Honest Burgers offers chicken beef, or vegan/vegetarian burger patties and they all come with their rosemary chips (fries) which are gluten-free. I got the Honest burger with a side of chips. All of their sides are gluten-free and include not only chips but onion rings, buffalo wings, and coleslaw! Plus they have 4 different gluten-free sauces to choose from as well!
We had a really positive experience here and I would definitely see myself coming to a place like this often if I lived locally. There's just something about a burger and fries that hits the spot, know what I mean? I've listed their locations in the Google Map above.
Gluten-Free High Tea Experience
Because you can't visit London without having a cup of tea, right?! The Ampersand Hotel was my first high tea experience and I felt like a kid in a candy store with all of these yummy gluten-free treats!
There are multiple hotels that offer a gluten-free high tea experience in London, but having heard multiple people recommend the science-themed high tea from the Ampersand (they also offer a Jurassic-themed tea too), I decided this unique experience would definitely be fun! I was joined by gluten-free friends Matt of Gluten-Free Street Gang and Sarah of Endless Distances and we had a fabulous afternoon tea.
The menu is a fixed price - about 50 pounds per person but you do get unlimited refills of tea and scones. The presentation of the tea, finger sandwiches, scones, pastries, and even fun little food experiments you go to do along the way made this super fun and engaging. This would be a wonderful cultural experience for children, teens, or families to enjoy, and the science touches make it very unique!
And of course, everything was delicious. We had two types of finger sandwiches, two types of scones with clotted cream and jam, honey chocolates, macarons, mini cakes, cookies, and of course, tea. Again, everything was beautiful, elegant, and scrumptious! The science tea offers menus for adults, kids, vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free.
To learn more about the Ampersand Hotel and the tea services they offer, visit their website and make sure you reserve a time in advance! This is a very popular activity especially in the spring/summer, so I made mine a good 3-4 weeks ahead of time. You can also follow the Ampersand on Instagram.
Supermarkets & Grocery Stores
Marks & Spencer
The #1 place I recommend when visiting London if you need gluten-free snacks, groceries, products, or are looking to have a picnic on the go is M&S (Marks & Spencer). This department store has multiple locations around London and reminds me a lot of El Corte Inglés in Madrid. It has an enormous food section with an entire "Made Without Wheat" line that has been blowing my mind since I first discovered them back in Hong Kong during our round the world trip in 2019.
Pasta, breads, croissants, cookies, cakes, crackers, pastries, even SANDWICHES to go, frozen foods - you name it, M&S probably has it in delicious gluten-free form. Not to mention they also have so many grab and go options like fresh fruit, veggies, salads, meats, cheeses, alcohol, etc. to make your own gluten-free picnic. This is what Matt of Gluten-Free Street Gang and I did during a sunny Saturday afternoon in Hyde Park and it was perfect!
M&S has many locations around London but I've included a lot of them in the map above. You might also see their M&S Food Halls, which is just the food part, and not the rest of their department store. Click here to view their website and their location list or follow Marks & Spencer on Instagram.
Other grocery stores to consider checking for gluten-free products include Sainsburys, Tesco, and Aldi!
More London Gluten-Free Places
As I mentioned, I don't have ALL of the London recommendations - just the places I visited and really enjoyed eating. I had no issues or problems eating gluten-free in London at all during my 5-days here!
But if you're looking for more London recommendations, I highly suggest checking out my fellow celiac & gluten-free friends who live in London & the UK and know the area even better!
Final Thoughts: Gluten-Free London
Wow. London was lovely! I truly enjoyed being back here after so many years, and even with celiac disease, didn't find it very challenging. With so many options, a higher awareness of celiac disease, allergen menus, and stores like M&S, if you plan to visit London on a gluten-free diet, there's a lot to look forward to.
I'd love to return to London and keep adding to this gluten-free London guide in the future. Can't say when I'll be back across the pond, but here's hoping it's sooner rather than later!
Looking for more gluten-free restaurant guides around the globe?
Discover pizza, pasta, and gelato (celiac safe!) in Italy.
Embrace the "Sin TACC" scene in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Be prepared for traveling to Thailand with celiac as you navigate a cuisine heavy in soy sauce and oyster sauce!
Indulge in tapas and churros (gluten-free) in Madrid.
Looking for a guided gluten-free tour? Check out Zaney Travel in Costa Rica.
Have you been to London?
What's your favorite gluten-free spot in London?
Let me know in the comments where I should visit next time I'm there!