Snap Custom Pizza

Wow, it’s been a while since I blogged. I’ve really been slackin’. I’m sorry, but I’m back!

I’m a little over halfway through my spring semester. It’s been going well, my grades are all A’s (except for chemistry with that dang C+, but I’ve got a couple weeks of quizzes and exams to get that baby up). Since I’ve been here at the good ol’ University of Delaware, I’ve been working my way through the restaurants on Main Street. There are literally so many choices, and a lot of them have gluten free options!

One of my favorites on Main Street is Snap Custom Pizza. They just opened at the beginning of last semester, and I could not wait to try it when I heard they would have gluten free crust! It’s a cool set up for a pizza place; it’s almost like a Subway but with pizza instead of subs. You pick the crust you want, the sauce, the cheese, the meat, and any other toppings you want, pick your finishing touches, then it gets put through the oven and in a few minutes, you have a nice fresh pizza! When you tell them you want a gluten free crust, they’ll ask you if it’s an allergy or preference. When you say allergy, they will change their gloves and apron and make your pizza separately in the back to make sure theres no cross contamination. They also have a separate pizza spatula (I think it’s called a peel?) to get it out of the oven and place it in a separate area to cut it with a separate pizza cutter. Needless to say, I love Snap Pizza.

IMG_2333

My standard pizza is usually this beauty: gluten free crust with pesto, shredded mozzarella, chicken, tomatoes, artichoke, and spinach, finished with roasted garlic oil. I mean, come on. Does that not just sound amazing?? The crust is one of the best I’ve had. The flavor is great, nice and thin but not too much so, and they always manage to get it perfectly crispy. The roasted garlic oil gives it the perfect amount of moisture and deliciousness. It is truly heavenly. My other go-to, for when I’m in the mood for your more typical pizza, is tomato sauce, shredded mozz, and pepperoni, finished with basil and parmesan. Also amazing. Now, I try to just treat myself to going to Snap every once in a while, but if you asked me if I’ve ever eaten there three times in one week…let’s just say I can not confirm nor deny that… 🙂

At Snap, you can either create your own pizza (which is my method of choice) or get one of their signature pizzas. But they’re not just all pizza, they also have salads and grain bowls, but when this girl goes to Snap, she wants to inhale an entire pizza. But you can see all their options on their menu. They have locations in Pennsylvania and Delaware, so you can find out if theres one near you!

Now, in the recent past, I was very upset with Snap Custom Pizza. On the day before St. Patrick’s Day, my local Snap in Newark, DE was having a promotion for $5 pizzas if you wear green. So I changed my shirt and walked my way up to Main Street to find a huge line of at least 40 people pouring out the door. But I thought, “I came all the way here. I’m not in a rush. I’ll wait in line. It’ll be worth it.” Well, 45 minutes later, I finally make it to the front of the line. I ask for a gluten free crust. She tells me they ran out of gluten free crust. Excuse me…what??? You what???? I was very upset, and since I was already on Main Street I angrily made my way over to Panera and bitterly ordered a Greek salad and tomato soup instead (which, by the way, was actually delicious, just not what I intended on eating). Waiting in line also made me late for my 8pm Grey’s Anatomy, which is obviously very important. So I did what my mother taught me to do: I wrote an angry (yet polite) email. And guess what? It paid off! I got a response from a very sweet woman named Nicole from Snap’s corporate offices, who sent me a free pizza card to use at my next visit (thank you Nicole!!!!!). So I actually ended up with a better deal than I would have gotten if they didn’t run out of gluten free crust. Moral of the story: angry emails work.

And moral of the blog: go to Snap Custom Pizza! If I could eat there every day I would. I love how attentive they are to my allergy, and they’re always very friendly and understanding. Definitely one of my favorite restaurants on Main Street, and one of my favorite restaurants anywhere.

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Europe Day 1 & 2: Barcelona

Now that I’ve been home for a over a week and I’ve had time to relax and mourn the fact that my amazing vacation is over, I am ready to tell you all about my trip!

So on June 28th, after a crazy busy week including my UDel orientation the day before, we packed up our van and drove off to the airport! We flew out of JFK Terminal 3, which actually had a decent amount of gluten free food options. I didn’t end up eating anything from here (except a bag of the necessary kettle cooked salt and vinegar chips and a mocha latte from Starbucks), because I was able to eat the salad that came with the meal on the plane (we waited too long to call about a full gluten free meal and couldn’t get one). The flight was long to say the least. 7 hours of trying—and failing—to get some sleep. So because of the 6 hour time difference in Barcelona, we left New York at 5:30 pm and landed in Barcelona at around 7 am. We were told that it’s bad to just go to sleep when you arrive in the morning, because it’ll throw you off for that night. Plus, we couldn’t check into our hotel until 3. So we just wandered around for 8 hours, which was fun. We just explored the area, and went to this nice little market called La Boqueria Market.

This place was so cool! There was meat, cheese, fresh fruit, and a whole bunch of other stuff. I had this awesome little coconut banana juice that was delicious. I also had some fruit and tried some of the salami that my dad got. It was some good stuff.

So then we just walked around and explored a little bit more around the main road. We ended up over at the Maremagnum, a mall right on the water. We ate lunch here at a place called Kurz & Gut. They had gluten containing items marked on the menu, which caused some confusion because I thought the things that were marked were the gluten free things. Once I realized that was not the case I had a much smaller selection to choose from. I got a salad that had mozzarella stuffed chicken on top with some oil and balsamic vinegar as the dressing.

kurz & gut salad

Overall a pretty average salad. The chicken was pretty good but not anything super special. Not the greatest first meal in Europe, but there were plenty more to come! After lunch we did more wandering, and ended up sitting in the little hotel courtyard waiting to check in. This is also where we took our mid-day nap. So finally 3 o’clock rolled around and we settled into our hotel room. But not for long, because then we needed dinner! We went to a cute little place called Allium Restaurant. This was one of the places that we found in our preliminary restaurant search, and I wanted some authentic Spanish food! To start off I got some gluten free bread. They topped it with tomato, olive oil, salt and pepper and it was delicious! We also ordered a pitcher of Sangria for the table (drinking age in Europe is 18, yay!) and that was very good. As a main dish, my dad and I split the Paella. I was very surprised when the plate arrived to me with four giant shrimp staring back at me. Yes staring, with their little beady eyes. Needless to say I made dad get the meat out of them for me, because I was not touching those things! The paella was very tasty and had a very strong seafood flavor—my only problem was that I think it needed a little more seasoning. Maybe just some salt and pepper; it just seemed like it was missing something.

I then of course had to get dessert from somewhere. So we went to a gelato place right near our hotel called La Squisita and got some chocolate and hazelnut gelato! The man was so nice, when we asked what flavors were gluten free he pulled out a list and read them all off to us! With how many were gluten free he might as well had just told us the ones that weren’t. The gelato really hit the spot. After this, I was ready to go into a full on coma. At that point we had been awake for waaay too many hours. So by 7:45, we were all in bed fast asleep.
la squisita gelato

Fast forward to the next morning: we woke up very refreshed from the extremely long sleep. My mom went over to a cafe that appeared to be a chain called Pans & Company to get some breakfast for her, my dad, and my brother. She also brought me back a decaf coffee to have with my breakfast, a Whenever Bar. Once we were all fueled up and ready to go, we set out to see more of Barcelona. When time came for lunch, we went to another restaurant we found on Find Me Gluten Free called La Lluna. This place was AMAZING. I could not believe how incredible this restaurant ended up being. First of all, it was a three course meal—appetizer, entree, dessert, and a glass of wine—for only 15 euros. I’ve never seen a price like that anywhere. The gluten free options were marked on the menu, so it was very easy to order. For an appetizer, I got the White Bean Salad with Bacon and Basil Pesta. This was sooooo delicious! I loved it a whole lot. The flavors were just perfect. I also tasted my dad’s appetizer, the Potatoes with Poached Egg. It tasted like breakfast, and it was so good. For my entree, I got the Dogfish Gratin with Creamy Spinach Mascarpone. Again, I loved this so much. The melted cheese on top of the fish made it so flavorful, and the spinach was smooth and creamy. I tried my mom’s pork dish which was covered in this amazing gravy; I was dipping my bread in it non stop. OH, I almost forgot to tell you about the bread!!! This was the best gluten free bread I have ever eaten in my life. It was crunchy on the outside and really soft and fluffy on the inside. I wanted to order 200 and take them home with me. So for dessert I got the cheesecake, and it was great! I was a little nervous about it because it had what they called a cinnamon crumble on top, and while it certainly could be made gluten free, and was marked gluten free, I had a funny feeling about it. But I ate it anyway, and didn’t get sick from it so my feeling was wrong! I also tried my mom’s Homemade Coconut Soup with Sorbet (tasty, but the soup and sorbet definitely needed to be eaten together and not individually to get the full effect) and my dad’s Soft Catalan Cheese with Honey and Nuts (not a huge fan of this, but my dad enjoyed it). I wish I could eat here every day of my life. I would say this was the second best meal I ate on this trip (you’ll have to wait til a little later for the best!)

So after this, my dad and brother went with the family who went with us on this trip (otherwise known as our cruise family) to Camp Nou, the Barcelona soccer stadium, for a tour. My mom and I aren’t very into soccer and weren’t interested in seeing this, so we went shopping instead. We had a great time just walking around and buying things, and eventually found our way back to the hotel to figure out dinner. We decided on a tapas restaurant that we had passed on our way back from lunch called El Pintxo de Petritxol. I was a little iffy about this place when we sat down and the waiter didn’t seem too knowledgable about gluten free options, but then I talked to another woman who seemed to know a lot. I ended up ordering the grilled squid tapas and the cheese plate. I didn’t know if I would like the squid, but I actually loved it! Whatever sauce they had on it was great. I think it was some kind of herby olive oil thing. The ends of the tentacles were crispy and crunchy and awesome. I loved it so much, I ordered a second one! The cheese plate was also delicious. Really, can you go wrong with a cheese plate??? I could not tell you what kind of cheese was on this, but whatever it was, it was good (except the bleu cheese, ew). They also gave us some free shots for some reason at the end of the meal—I think the waiter had a crush on Lauren (member of cruise family). So I took my first shot ever, of what the waiter told me was their version of Bailey’s Irish Cream, and I discovered that I do not like the way it feels to take a shot. But it was an interesting experience!

We then made the walk back to our hotel and hung out there for the rest of the night. We went to bed very excited to get on the cruise the next day!!

Up next- Day 3 & 4: First Day of Cruise and Day at Sea! 🙂

Pies & Pints

On Tuesday, we made the lovely six hour drive to West Virginia University to bring my brother home for the summer. Man that drive is seriously long, but it’s totally worth it when it means I get to see my brother again. 🙂

So technically, I didn’t have to go all the way there—I could’ve just stayed home by myself and waited til my parents brought Ryan home to see him. But there are only two reasons why I decided to sit in the car for 12 cumulative hours over two days: I didn’t want to wait one more day to see my brother, and the food. I swear, West Virginia has the greatest gluten free food ever. I require that, when I make the trip with my parents, we go to Chaang Thai for the best GF pad thai ever, and Pies & Pints, whose pizza is definitely in the running for the best GF pizza I’ve ever had. So we went to Chaang Thai for dinner on Tuesday (thank god, because we found out it’s closed on Wednesdays and I would have died if I didn’t get my pad thai) and Pies & Pints for lunch on Wednesday before we left. Although I’m surprised we had any appetite after cleaning Ryan’s dorm room—think dirt on dirt on more layers of dirt. Boys are gross.

pies and pints gluten free appetizers

I’ve tried two of their three gluten free appetizer options: the Char-Grilled Hot Wings and the Pork & Pepper Nachos. I am crazy about their wings. They are delicious. They’re the only GF wings I’ve had that are truly as crispy as they should be. Most of the time, GF wings are baked, and can’t get quite as crispy as these do. It’s served with creamy Gorgonzola. I love the sauce, and I don’t think I even like Gorgonzola. That’s how awesome Pies & Pints is. Only complaint: after eating them I end up with a bunch of little black bits stuck on my teeth. As for the nachos, they were just as fantastic. Beware: there are jalapeños on this. I didn’t realize, took a nice piled up chip, and set my mouth on fire with a giant jalapeño. But otherwise, delicious. I loved the pork and beans and chipotle crema all together. Just amazing.

pies and pints gluten free pizza

So I’ve tried a couple of different kinds of pizza from Pies & Pints, but this time I got the Margherita pizza, which is fresh mozzarella, fresh basil, Parmesan, olive oil, fresh garlic & tomato sauce (I got roasted garlic instead of fresh). My mom also got gluten free so I could try her White pizza with spinach (and more roasted garlic…we probably had really bad breath after this). Pies & Pints makes their own crust, and has pretty much perfected the thick gluten free pizza crust. Most places I get GF pizza, it’s a thin, crispy crust, which I do enjoy, but I greatly appreciate a nice thick crust as well. Every other thicker crust I’ve tried is a slightly wrong texture, but this pizza is just how it should be. It’s perfect. I love it a lot. The toppings that we got were amazing, and I’ve also gotten the Classic, which may be my favorite.

pies and pints gluten free sandwich

This time, I really wanted to try one of their sandwiches, but wasn’t willing to give up the opportunity to eat the pizza right then. So I decided to get the Italian Hero to go. This has on it salami, pepperoni, capicola (spicy ham), provolone, Mama Lil’s Sweet Hot Peppers, red onions & house vinaigrette (I got it without the peppers or onions). I ended up eating it when we got home, and oh my goodness it was fantastic. I didn’t know a sandwich could be so amazing. I was interested to discover that the sandwich bread was actually the same as the pizza crust. Pretty cool.

I love Pies & Pints soooo much. They have nine locations across West Virginia, Ohio, and Kentucky, but unfortunately none in New Jersey. 😦 So I will just have to settle for having it one or two times a year when we make a trip to West Virginia!

Link to Pies & Pints menu

Wild Bamboo

wild bamboo

I am a sucker for a good bowl of pad thai. It’s probably one of my favorite dishes ever. As I’ve said, I had the best pad thai I’ve ever eaten at Chaang Thai in West Virginia. But unfortunately, I can’t drive six hours to WV whenever I get a craving. So I have made it a personal mission to find the best gluten free pad thai in New Jersey. So far, Wild Bamboo is the top contender. But it’s not just the pad thai that’s good, everything else is too! They have a pretty decent sized gluten free menu, covering all the bases—appetizers, soups, salads, fried rice, curry, pad thai, “chinese classics,” and desserts. Here you can see the full menu, but you’d have to visit to see the full extent of gluten free offerings, since they aren’t all marked on the main menu. This is one of those places that I was so excited to find, and even more excited to eat at when I realized how delicious the food is! It’s in Pier Village right on the beach—what a great spot to be in! You could spend the day on the beach then pop in and get some lunch or dinner. In the warmer months, they have some outdoor seating so you can enjoy the nice weather with your meal.

lettuce wraps and chicken satay

First up is the appetizers. We ordered the Chicken Satay. So, I’m not really sure what happened, but our waiter said something was wrong or something happened and he brought us Chicken Lettuce Wraps and said the Satay was on the house. We didn’t really understand why, but hey, we got some free food so I won’t complain. The most confusing part was that the Lettuce Wraps weren’t on the gluten free menu, but he assured us that it was gluten free (which was confirmed by the fact that I didn’t feel like I was dying the next day). So the Lettuce Wraps were awesome, I loved them. I think they were even better than  P.F. Changs’ lettuce wraps, which I also love very much. The Chicken Satay was pretty good too. I liked the peanut sauce a lot, but the chicken was coated in some curry flavors, and I’m not a huge lover of curry.

mandarin salad

The first time we visited I wasn’t that hungry, so I got the Mandarin Salad and added grilled chicken. It was so yummy and really refreshing. I loved the little pops of juicy mandarin throughout the meal. The dressing was pretty tasty; it didn’t say what the dressing was in the description of the salad but I think it was the ginger dressing. There are only two things I would like to change about it. First, I wish the chicken was diced rather than sliced, because, as I’ve said before, I like to get a little of everything in each bite, and the sliced chicken makes that hard. Second, if I got this again I would get it without red onions. I’m really not a fan of red onions but I forgot to ask to omit them, and the flavor kind of took over the dish.

pad thai

Now onto the most important part. The moment we’ve all been waiting for. The Chicken Pad Thai! This is some seriously awesome Pad Thai. The flavor is amazing. I wouldn’t change a thing about it. I still have to say that Chaang Thai’s pad thai is better, but this is definitely the next best thing. I think my favorite part about a pad thai (besides the flavor of the sauce of course) is the peanuts on top. It gives it a great crunch and a little contrasting texture. One of the best things about this Pad Thai is that it’s just as good left over. It reheats so well you would think it was freshly made. And I appreciate that in a meal, because that means I can eat it again and it will taste just as delicious!

I’ve also tried their Thai Pineapple Fried Rice, and my dad has gotten the Massaman Curry. I love the fried rice—pineapple in fried rice is one of the greatest ideas ever. It’s just so fantastic. My dad enjoyed the curry, but I can’t really comment on it because I was too focused on my pad thai to try it. Now, they also have some desserts, but I’ve never gotten around to trying them. Usually if I’m in the mood for dessert after my meal, we walk down a couple doors to The Corner Cafe & Bistro for some gelato. Overall, I love Wild Bamboo, and it is now my go to restaurant when I’m craving pad thai!

Have a restaurant suggestion for my next pad thai taste test? Tell me about it in the comments so I can give it a try!

(Also, make sure you like Gluten Free Deliciously on Facebook! 🙂 )

Koro Koro Rice Ball Cafe (+ Wedding!)

I had quite an exciting weekend! Saturday was a big day; my parents and I went to our neighbor Ashley’s wedding, which was absolutely beautiful and so much fun!! I took the opportunity to take my Canon Rebel SL1 on one of its first real adventures. And it was easy to take pretty pictures at such a pretty wedding!

The reception was a blast. It was my first time at a real big wedding, and I loved it! My concern at that point was what I would be able to eat. At cocktail hour, it was a little questionable with all the buffet-style food, so I stuck to the naturally gluten free veggies, meats, and cheeses. Side note: I learned that I like goat cheese. So after cocktail hour came the reception. We called the venue ahead of time to make sure they would have some options for me, and the wait staff was very knowledgable. For the first course we had a pear and arugula salad, which was really tasty! There were spiced pecans in it that were ridiculously tasty. For the main course, I had the beef tenderloin with mashed potatoes and spinach. This was sooooooo delicious!!!!! I loved it. I’m usually not a beef kind of person but this was amazing. And those mashed potatoes were the best mashed potatoes I’ve ever eaten in my life—not even exaggerating. As for dessert, none of the ones on the menu were gluten free so they made me a fruit plate. With this style of eating it’s important that the staff is aware of your allergy/sensitivity and know what they’re doing. As usual, it always pays off to ask questions. Overall, I felt super taken care of at this wedding, food-wise and fun-wise.

koro koro

We stayed overnight in a hotel near the venue in Jersey City, so the next day we had to find a place for lunch. In our pre-travel restaurant research, we found this place called Koro Koro that makes Japanese rice balls called Onigiri, and is completely gluten free (and we know what that means: no cross contamination possible!!). Now, I don’t know about you, but when I hear “rice ball,” I think of the Italian version with cheese that’s coated in breadcrumbs and fried. But these were made up of a filling of your choice wrapped in rice then wrapped in seaweed. We bought a whole bunch of different kinds. They look more like rice triangles than rice balls to me.

koro moro rice balls

We got the Cuban (Pork, Black Beans, & Plantains), Spicy Salmon (Salmon, Kimchi, Garlic Chili, & Mayo), Indian (Chickpeas, Carrots, Golden Raisins, Sweet Potato, Coconut, Curry, & Indian Spices), Yama Chicken (Chicken, Mountain Vegetables, Shredded Coconut, Cilantro, & Green Curry), Moroccan (Swiss Chard, Red Pepper, Golden Raisins, Toasted Pine Nuts, Fresh Ginger, & Balsamic Vinegar), Mediterranean (Artichoke Hearts, Roasted Sweet Potatoes, Sundried Tomatoes, Black Olives, & Lemon Zest), and their special at the time, Mexican (I forgot to pay attention to what was in it but it had shrimp and veggies and Mexican flavors). We also got the Japanese Potato Salad (Potatoes, Cucumbers, Carrots, Onions, w/ Spicy Mustard & Mayo) and Koro Koro Cole Slaw (Cabbage, Pineapple, Wasabi, & Mayo) as sides. That may seem like a lot, but they’re not that big so we each got two and had one to share.

koro koro rice balls

I picked the Spicy Salmon and Mediterranean. I loved the salmon because it tasted kind of like a sushi roll, and I love sushi. Unfortunately, I didn’t really care for the Mediterranean; it was just a little weird and didn’t taste right with the seaweed to me. My mom had the Cuban and Yama Chicken. She loved both of them! I really liked them both too. My dad had the Indian and Moroccan and enjoyed them both. I’m not a big fan of Indian kind of flavors but I did like it, and the Moroccan was pretty good too. We shared the Mexican, which was really tasty. We all agreed that the Cuban and Spicy Salmon were the best. The only thing I would’ve changed is the size of the shrimp; they were whole so it was hard to get some in each bite. I loved the potato salad. I love potato salad in general but this was so good. The cole slaw was also very tasty—a little too spicy for me because of the wasabi but my parents loved it.

koro moro making rice balls

Watching them make these was pretty cool. They have these little molds, put everything inside them, and wrap it up. It’s also interesting the way they wrap them in the seaweed and plastic packaging. At first I had a little trouble opening it from the directions on the plastic itself. But they have a video on their website that helps you figure it out. I was impatient and couldn’t wait to eat it, so I didn’t watch the video and ripped my seaweed. 😦

koro koro rice ball instructions

Overall this was a very successful food weekend. I got to have a whole bunch of fun as well as try something new. I wish Koro Koro was closer to home so I could go there all the time! Hopefully I will get up to Jersey City another time soon so I can get some more of these awesome rice balls.

Link to Koro Koro Rice Ball Cafe menu

Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant

Before I get into the review, I thought I’d let you know what’s going on in my life right now. So I’m a senior in high school, and it’s about that time to be hearing back from colleges! I am happy to say that I’ve been accepted to all the schools I applied to! So exciting!! I got into Rowan University, University of the Sciences, Pace University, The College of New Jersey, Stockton University, and most recently, University of Delaware. So many choices. I will let you know my final decision when the time comes!

Well anyway, in honor of getting into UDel, I will be writing about Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant, a wonderful place that we stopped in for dinner when I was visiting the campus!

So after our campus tour, we had to figure out where we were going to eat. The place we were planning to go that we’d visited before (Klondike Kate’s) was closed, so we had to change our plans. That’s when we found Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant! This was a pretty great discovery. They have a fairly large gluten free menu, which features salads, appetizers, burgers, sandwiches, entrees, and desserts.

ironhillgfmenu

We decided to go for two appetizers—the Hummus and the Baked Chicken Wings. The hummus was so good; we were expecting to just get a bowl of hummus with some veggie sticks, but there was so much other stuff too! Now that I’m reading the menu again I realize all the additions are actually listed in the description, so obviously we didn’t read the menu very well! Anyway, it came with carrot and celery sticks, diced cucumbers, olives, tomato-pepper relish, and feta. I loved it! The hummus was so flavorful, and it was fun to mix it up and pair it with the different things. As for the chicken wings, I think I’ve said in a past review that if I go to a restaurant and they have GF chicken wings, it’s almost guaranteed that I will be ordering them. These wings were really good, and the buffalo sauce tasted great! If I had a comment, I think they could’ve been a little crispier, but when you’re baking them it’s hard to really get the outside good and crunchy.

Iron Hill Brewery gluten free appetizers

As for the meal, I got the Santa Fe Turkey Burger. This had on it guacamole, tomato, bacon,  pepper jack cheese, and ancho-honey mayonnaise. And it was on a gluten free bun! It was sooo yummy. I loved the flavor combination. Very Santa Fe-ish. I wish it had more of the ancho-honey mayonnaise though! It was delicious and I wanted more! The only real problem I had was with the bun—it tasted good and the texture was soft, but it was really crumbly and kind of fell apart in my hands. Otherwise, it was awesome!

Iron Hill Brewery gluten free burger

We skipped dessert since the only options were Creme Brûlée (which I’m not a fan of) and Ice Cream. Instead, we went down the street and got some gelato from Caffé Gelato, which was amazing. Who doesn’t love gelato?

I digress…back to the point. I really enjoyed Iron Hill. From beginning to end, it was wonderful. I would absolutely go back and try more of the items on that nice long gluten free menu! It’s actually a small chain with 12 locations in Delaware, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania—visit their website to see if there’s a location near you!

It’s good to know that if I end up at UDel, I’ll have a great restaurant to go to. 🙂

Noodles & Company

Noodles & Company is the perfect place to go when you don’t feel like making dinner and just want something that’s quick. It’s described as a “fast casual restaurant,” so it’s like a fast food restaurant but with higher quality food. And you can definitely tell that they use quality ingredients. The food is so good! I’ve told you guys how much I love pasta, so this is totally the place for me. You do pay a little extra for the gluten free fusilli ($1.50), but it’s worth it! The staff is very aware and knowledgable of gluten allergies. Not every time, but a couple of times I’ve been there the cashiers yell to the people making the food that something was ordered by someone with a gluten allergy, and they wipe down their station. Either way, whether yelling or not, the chefs are told they are making food for someone with an allergy. It’s pretty awesome, and I’ve never gotten sick after eating here. It’s also a chain; they currently have 410 locations in 31 states. It isn’t super common that big chain restaurants have gluten free options, so that’s pretty cool.

A decent amount of the noodle dishes can be made with gluten free fusilli or rice noodles. You can see a full list here on the Noodles & Company website, under the gluten free tab. However, something to be aware of is that I was told that the Wisconsin Mac & Cheese could NOT be made gluten free, but it’s possible that this has been changed. Just be sure to ask before you order it so you don’t have any problems. I also don’t think the meatballs are gluten free either, so again, ask to be sure.

I’ve tried a couple different dishes. My favorite is the Penne Rosa with GF fusilli. The spicy tomato cream sauce is just fantastic! It also has tomatoes, spinach, and mushrooms in it. I get it without mushrooms just out of personal preference. You get the option of parmesan or feta on top, and as much as I love feta, the parmesan just seems right on this. The flavors are just so yummy! The only thing I would change is the size of the tomatoes and spinach. I like things cut up really small so I get a little bit of everything in each bite. The ones in this dish are pretty large. But otherwise, it’s wonderful!

noodles and company penne rosa

Another favorite of mine is the Pad Thai. This is made with rice noodles, so it’s naturally gluten free. Now, as I’ve previously established in my Chaang Thai review, Chaang Thai has the greatest pad thai ever, so I’m picky about my pad thai. But for a fast food kind of place that doesn’t specialize in Thai food, it’s pretty good. The flavor of the sauce is nice, and I like all the things in the dish. Scrambled egg, red cabbage, peanuts, bean sprouts, cilantro, carrots, yum! My only issue with this is, again, the size of the carrots. They need to be skinnier, because they’re not very integrated into the dish. But on their website, it says that they have a new recipe with a “more traditional sauce” and “features green onions instead of carrots.” So I guess I’ll have to visit again soon to see if I like this new recipe better!

noodles and company pad tai

The only other thing I’ve tried from Noodles & Company is the Pesto Cavatappi with GF fusilli. To be honest, I tried it so long ago I don’t completely remember it. It features basil pesto, garlic, mushrooms, tomato, wine, cream, parmesan, and Italian parsley. And of course, I got it without mushrooms. I do remember that I did like it. I also remember thinking the pesto sauce needed some more cream to make it a little better—it was a tiny bit dry.

According to the menu, they also offer salads that can be made gluten free, as well as tomato bisque. I’ve never tried any of these, but honestly, am I gonna go to Noodles & Company and not get noodles?? Who goes to a noodle restaurant and gets a salad and soup???

One of my favorite things about this place is that I can order online and just go skip the line and pick it up! It’s so simple. Also, it’s attached to one of my favorite malls, so if I’m hungry after a long day of shopping I can just head here (the food court doesn’t exactly have the best options for someone with celiac). In general, Noodles & Company is a delicious and easy gluten free option!

**Update 3/6/16– I went to Noodles & Company last weekend and asked about the Wisconsin Mac & Cheese. It can be made gluten free now!! So of course I had to order it with the GF Fusilli. It was so good, and soo cheesy! I think I have a new favorite. I definitely recommend it! I ate it so fast I forgot to even take a picture for you guys. I’m so happy they changed it so it’s gluten free now. The Mac & Cheese is the one thing from here that everyone always said was amazing—and now I can 100% confirm that it is.