Gluten Free in Washington DC!

This past weekend we took a trip to Washington DC-and what an awesome trip it was!
We did a lot of sightseeing and walking, had phenomenal weather, stayed in a lovely hotel just off Dupont Circle-and I had some excellent gluten free eats thanks to some help from my celiac friends on Twitter. Special shouts outs to Elizabeth Atkinson (Gluten Free Glee), Sandra Robins (Gluten Free Optimist/Maryland Celiac,) and Stephanie Diamond. (Stephanie was also profiled as a Gluten Free Athlete.)

Something we don't see here in Florida

Something we don't see here in Florida

As I always do for traveling, I took a mix of almonds and pumpkin seeds, a few apples, and some protein powder in my carry on. These are my go-to travel buddies to make sure I have some food should my flight be delayed. Which-miracle of miracles-it was not! In either direction!

On Friday evening we went to Firefly for dinner. It was crowded and they were not seating without reservations, but the culinary gods were smiling on us as a high top in the bar opened up as we got there. Our server/hostess was wonderfully attentive in answering my questions and brought me their gluten free menu. The night’s special was a swordfish and quinoa-herb dish was she told me was also gluten free. I went for that and it was delicious. The herbs gave a beautiful fresh taste to the quinoa along with a bright green color. The non-celiacs went for the meatball sliders and mac n’ cheese, which they said was also very good. Success!

Saturday we had a full day, with tickets to the Washington Monument for 9:30 AM. It was overcast, but still a beautiful day. We checked out the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, and were starving so we got an early lunch in the museum. The gentleman manning the Taqueria stand was awesome. He told me that the chicken was not cooked with any flour, and made me a bowl of shredded chicken, black beans, grilled veggies and lots of salsa fresca. It tasted great. So if you are in a pinch-don’t be afraid to ask how things are prepared, and request an “”off the menu” item.

Jeff getting ready to jump the fence to the White House.  We made nice with the Secret Service after this was taken.

Jeff getting ready to jump the fence to the White House. We made nice with the Secret Service after this was taken.

Saturday night we walked up to Dupont Circle to have a look-see. We passed Hello Cupcake on the way, and I had my heart set on a gluten free cupcake for dessert on the way back to the hotel. We ate dinner at Kramerbooks and Afterwords Cafe-I loved the idea of a combo bookstore/restaurant/coffee shop. Our server looked a little frightened when I started discussing gluten, but he did great. I ordered the “simply grilled” hanging tenderloin of beef, which came with a green salad and grilled veggies. The plate was beautiful, and very tasty. Jeff even got some of my steak because it was a large portion. They had a hot fudge sundae on the menu which had my eye-but we left to get the cupcake. I am VERY sorry to report that the gluten free selection was SOLD OUT :( when we got there. And they are closed on Sunday. So I did not get to try the fabulousness of Hello Cupcake, the only downer to this trip.

Sunday we had a bit of time before having to head to the airport, so we went to Luna Grill for breakfast. (We actually ate lunch there as well.) For breakfast I had an egg white omelet with chicken, spinach and feta, and sliced tomato instead of toast. Easy peasy. (For lunch I had the spinach salad with grilled chicken added-just to be sure ask that the chicken is not floured-mine was very good.)

We wandered about-and happened across the Dupont Circle Farmers Market! What an awesome market. We remarked several (OK, many) times that we wish we were able to have a market like that here at home. They had everything!

The bounty at the Dupont Circle Farmers Market

The bounty at the Dupont Circle Farmers Market

As I was getting on the plane in a couple hours, we only got some apples. Jeff said it was the best apple he’s ever had-and I concur.

All in all, a wonderful and successfully gluten free vacation. Thanks again for everyone who helped out with recommendations.

Filed Under: celiac diseaseGluten Free


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  1. Kim says:

    Sounds like a wonderful trip! :)

  2. Erin says:

    Thanks! It was a great trip-we’ll be heading there again someday for sure.

  3. Stephanie says:

    Oh, I’m so homesick for D.C. reading this. We lived near Dupont Circle. I got some of the best produce and fresh cheeses from that farmers market. I’ll definitely check out Firefly and Hello Cupcakes when I’m back next summer.

  4. Erin says:

    That farmers market was awesome! What a great area to live in too.

  5. Andy says:

    Hi. My wife and I write free online city guides based on our personal experiences and we have more recommendations of what to see in Washington DC. Take a look…

    Washington City Guide

    Best wishes


  6. Reid Sladek says:

    I enjoyed your post and the recommendations that are provided. There are a ton of ideas out there that are both savvy and bad. If you know of any more suggestions concerning travel tips or simliar topics, that would be greatly appreciated. Keep up the excellent writing!

  7. Angela says:

    If you are looking for a hotel in Washington DC that can serve gluten free food, you can check Gluten Ffree Hotels Guide( ).

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