Restaurants with Gluten-free French Fries
Got a hankering for french fries and need a list of restaurants with gluten-free french fries or more specifically, celiac-safe french fries? This is your post.
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Are French Fries Gluten-free?
First, let me address the elephant in the room. Aren’t french fries just fried potatoes? Doesn’t that make them gluten-free?
Yes, and no. French fries are fried potatoes and if we stop there, then yes they are gluten-free. However, things get complicated fast.
First, some restaurants and even food producers coat their french fries in flour or batter for a crispier fry. Coating french fries in flour or batter makes them not gluten-free. For example, some of the Target brand frozen french fries are coated in wheat flour and are not gluten-free.
Second, even if fries aren’t made with gluten-containing flour or batter, if they are fried in the same fryer as foods that are, then they are not safe due to cross-contact.
Meaning if someone is frying breaded onion rings in the same fryer as fries, those french fries are now not gluten-free anymore due to cross-contact
What if I Have Non-Celiac Gluten-Sensitivity
Here is where things get a little trickier.
If you have celiac disease, any gluten-free food sharing a fryer with gluten-containing food is not considered gluten-free or celiac-safe. So if gluten-free food shares a fryer with not gluten-free food, it is not safe for people with celiac.
However, the story might be different if you have non-celiac gluten-sensitivity. People with non-celiac gluten-sensitivity have a wide range of varying gluten-exposure tolerance levels.
So some people with non-celiac gluten-sensitivity might be fine with french fries sharing a fryer and some may not.
It really just depends. Check out my post on the difference between celiac disease and gluten intolerance to learn more.
Restaurants With Gluten-free French Fries
Now that we’ve cleared the air over french fries, where can you buy gluten-free french fries? You can buy them from some restaurants and grocery stores.
Here is a list of restaurants that prepare their french fries in a dedicated fryer and are safe for people with celiac disease.
(disclaimer – always double check before ordering that the fries are made in a dedicated fryer)
Five Guys has gluten-free fries made in a dedicated fryer.
You can also order a burger wrapped in lettuce here, just be sure to let them know you have celiac disease and need them to change their gloves when the prepare your order.
BONUS: they have free peanuts to eat while you wait!
Penn Station is my favorite place to get gluten-free fries made in a dedicated fryer. Sometimes they will give you extra fries than the container you bought and that is always a treat.
I used to stop by Penn Station in high school for fresh fried fries weekly… the memories.
If you’re cool to dine in, Red Robins is a great place to get celiac-safe french fries.
They have separate dedicated fryer for gluten-free fries (but you have to request it) and on top of that, they have bottomless french fries.
Pay a little extra and you can have bottomless sweet potato fries (my favorite!).
They also have a vast gluten-free menu and have a strong allergen protocol. The Red Robins I have been to make sure to mark the gluten-free food before it arrives to you.
I have yet to find a Wendy’s with a dedicated fryer for their french fries, but apparently some locations have one.
If you’re curious about the Wendy’s around you, call and ask to see if they fry anything else in the fryer they fry the french fries in.
Their political stances aside… Chick-Fil-A does usually cook their waffle fries in a dedicated fryer (but make sure to check with your location).
You can also order a gluten-free chicken sandwich here that comes disassembled.
In-N-Out Burger has gluten-free fries made in a dedicated fryer. Make sure when you order you let them know you have a gluten allergy to make sure they take the proper precautions when serving you your fries.
Restaurants Without Gluten-Free French Fries
So we talked about the restaurants that have gluten-free fries, what about restaurants that definitely don’t have safe french fries? Below are common restaurants and the status of their fries.
- McDonalds french fries are not gluten-free in the USA. Even if the fries are made in a dedicated fryer, they are coated in wheat beef flavoring.
- Rally’s and Checker’s french fries are made with wheat flour and are made in the same fryer as other wheat coated products.
- Burger King french fries are cooked in the same fryer as hash browns which contain wheat flour. However, this may vary by store so feel free to ask your local Burger King if they have a separate fryer.
- Shake Shack has naturally gluten-free fries that come into cross-contact with gluten during frying and are not celiac-safe.
- Arby’s french fries may be fried in the same oil as other gluten containing foods.
Frozen Gluten-Free French Fries
Want to skip the cutting and prep? Below are some gluten-free frozen french fry options you just throw on a pan and bake!
- Ore-Ida – Ore-Ida labels their frozen french fries as gluten-free when applicable.
- Strong Roots – has gluten-free frozen mixed root fries you can bake.
- Alexia – not all of Alexia froze french fries are gluten-free but if their products do have gluten it is identified on the packaging.
- Cascadian Farms frozen french fries have gluten-free ingredients.