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Gluten-free Help in Germany

Hello fellow travelers!

My family and I will be in Germany through the 2022 Christmas holidays. Last time I was in Europe, I found Germany particularly challenging to find restaurants that offered more than salad options. Since I am Celiac (meaning I can't cheat), might you have any recommendations? In particular:

Munich options- we are spending most of our time here
Christmas Markets- are there items always made gluten-free?
Groceries Stores?

Also, I can happily eat everything else. Sometimes, I am directed to health food stores that are vegan, sugar-free, etc., but I love butter and meat! :)

Also, we will have a car and are willing to travel all through Bavaria if there are some towns with a spot that can't be missed gluten-free.

Many thanks for your insights in advance~

Posted by
8361 posts

Grocery stores all have fairly decent sections that are now gluten free.
As for dining, go for potatoes, or sides of rice. Ask them to leave off the sauces. Meats are all fine too, as long as they are not breaded or done in a sauce. Ask for schnitzel "natur". Restaurants like Hans im Gluck have an extra menu that will tell you what is in each item so that anyone with allergies can avoid certain items.
If people are pointing you towards health food stores or towards vegan or vegetarian restaurants, it is because those places are also offering gluten free items or are very aware of it.

Frankfurt has at least 2 cafes that are totally gluten free, so imagine Munich does too. Google "Glutenfrei" to find them.
At the Xmas markets, grilled meats (ask for no bread), pommes, roast chestnuts, I am sure you will find plenty more.

Posted by
333 posts

I visited Frankfurt and several locations in Bavaria (but not Munich) earlier this fall. One in our group needed both gluten- and dairy-free food and she found it fairly easy to find both. I'm guessing Munich will be similar. Waitstaff were very helpful with menu suggestions. She was impressed with the selection of baked goods available-delicious as well as reasonably priced.

If your accommodations offer breakfast, be sure to notify them of your dietary needs in advance. Gluten free baked goods were provided at each of our hotels.

Posted by
141 posts

Larger Christmas markets will usually have at least one purveyor of smoked salmon, cooked on large planks over a roaring fire. Just as for a piece without bread, as they might default to sandwich-style otherwise. Also plenty of brats and sausages, frittes, etc.

Posted by
3031 posts

The good news is Germany has really hopped on the gluten-free trend (knowing it's not a trend for you condition at all!) and any major city now has at least one gluten-free bakery, trendier restaurants and cafes are where you're more likely to see items marked gluten-free on the menu.

Others have already mentioned good suggestions for Christmas markets, but you can also eat the variety of candied almonds (gebrannte mandeln) and probably the chocolate dipped fruit that's also common, although be sure and ask. These days you can even find a few gluten-free German beers.

Potato salad is another side that's common here that should be gluten free. And don't forget about doner kebap or greek or balkan restaurants! You can get a Doner-box that's the roasted meat on fries with a garlic sauce, and greek restaurants feature a lot of grilled meats and often offer rice as a side.

Posted by
10 posts

My husband also has confirmed celiac disease. Interestingly, a chef of a gluten free bistro in the states told us that my husband might be able to eat bread and other glutenous food in Europe because some countries don't have GMO flour. Apparently that is if not true coincidental. My husband can eat flour products in Paris with zero to very slight symptoms. Whenever we're in Paris he eats whatever he wants and suffers nothing from the indulgence. Very odd indeed. He is able to eat bread, croissant, pizza, macrons, and drink 1667. Not advocating that you try it but we found it interesting.

Posted by
2 posts

This information is incredible, and I can't thank you enough. I feel much more optimistic about visiting Germany this tie around. To think there may gluten-free bakeries in Munich is so exciting.

~Blessings to all!