Gluten-Free Edinburgh: A Travel Guide for Celiacs

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From medieval castles, cobbled streets, and rich and bloody history to being the gateway into the Scotland Highlands, the hilly, medieval city of Edinburgh is a sight to behold and a wonderful place to visit. But before you explore the sights of Edinburgh, you must first find out where you can safely eat gluten-free food in Edinburgh. The city is filled with gluten-free places to eat, but here are some of our favorite gluten-free restaurants in Edinburgh along with tips and tricks to help you navigate the capital city of Scotland!

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Table of Contents

Tips For Eating Gluten-Free in Edinburgh 

  • Eating out can be costly, I highly recommend opting for lunch deals, which offer a 2 course meal for £12 or an early dinner for 2 courses at £14.95. 
  • Haggis is a traditional Scottish dish that is not gluten-free as it is made with oats, and sometimes pearl barley, However, you can find gluten-free versions of it, just double check it does not contain any of those ingredients. 
  • Double check that chips/fries aren’t fried with gluten containing items; same goes for gluten-free fried fish, chicken, etc. 
  • Always make sure to say you are a celiac and not just order a gluten-free meal, so the chefs can take the proper precautions.
  • Look out for Coeliac UK’s GF symbol on menus and in the windows, as it means that the restaurant or venue is certified gluten-free and is trained to cater to celiacs. 

Gluten-Free Restaurants in Edinburgh

Restaurants marked with a star (★) are 100% gluten-free and accredited by Coeliac UK.

GF Edinburgh ★

Located just outside the city center in Haymarket is Edinburgh’s first and only dedicated gluten-free takeaway cafe, GF Edinburgh. Despite being small with only 3 seats, GF Edinburgh offers a plethora of great gluten-free goodies. These include gluten-free paninis, rolls, and salads from their fridge section, as well as hot options such as pizza, pastas, soups, and daily specials like mac & cheese. Besides savory options, GF also has a counter filled with gluten-free sweets from local bakers and the dedicated gluten-free wholesale bakery, Wheat Free Direct.

37 Dalry Rd, Edinburgh EH11 2BU | Visit Website

Educated Flea Restaurant

This gluten-free gem outside the city center on Broughton Street is well worth a visit. Their innovative dishes are delicious, flavorful, and almost entirely gluten-free as the menu is always 99% gluten-free as well as vegan friendly. The staff are not only knowledgeable about celiac disease and cross contamination but also conscious about other allergens as well. Educated Flea and it’s sister restaurants, Apiary Restaurant and Three Birds know what it takes to properly cater to celiacs which is exactly why I cannot recommend them enough.

32B Broughton St, Edinburgh EH1 3SB, UK | Visit Website

Howies Restaurant

Scottish, seasonal, and seriously tasty is how Howie’s describe themselves and their menu. Their menu, which is labeled with NGCI (non gluten containing ingredients), features plenty of safe options to choose from including tasty traditional Scottish dishes like Scottish smoked salmon, chicken casserole, and the delicious poached rhubarb which is a must have. If you truly want to take advantage of their delicious food, I highly recommend their lunch and dinner deals which offer 2 courses for £11.95 and £14.95 respectfully.

Howies is a restaurant that understands the difference between gluten-free and celiac safe, and takes celiac disease and cross contamination seriously. It was very reassuring to me! Howie’s excellent food and understanding of celiac safety makes it one of the best gluten-free restaurants in the heart of Edinburgh. Howies has two additional locations in the city center.

10-14 Victoria St, Edinburgh EH1 2HG | Visit Website

Sugar Daddy’s Bakery ★

The 100% gluten free bakery, Sugar Daddy’s, conjures up everything you’d want in a bakery, gluten-free cupcakes, cookies, muffins, brownies, cakes, and scones. Though this is Edinburgh’s one and only dedicated gluten-free bakery and satisfies every gluten-free sweet tooth, it doesn’t limit itself to just the sweet stuff. The small breakfast/brunch menu includes french toast, pancakes, soups, and sandwiches making it a must-visit for anyone looking for a gluten-free treat while in Edinburgh. Sugar Daddy’s Bakery has a smaller second location on Rodney street near the Royal Botanic Gardens.

8 Roseneath Street, Marchmont Cres, Edinburgh EH9 1JH, United Kingdom |  Visit Website

Union of Genius  

Union of Genius is soup at it’s finest! Scotland’s first soup restaurant caters well to gluten-free eaters. Every day Union of Genius offers six fresh homemade soups which are almost always gluten-free with many dairy-free options as well. The very few times they aren’t gluten-free they’ll let you know. The soups, which are made with local and seasonal ingredients, are never thickened with flour or cornstarch, and are served with your choice of gluten-free bread or rolls. Voted as the best soup in Scotland, it’s no wonder this small shop (mostly takeaway) is considered one of the best gluten-free restaurants in Edinburgh.

8 Forrest Rd, Edinburgh EH1 2QN | Visit Website

Tupiniquim ★

Looking at the small green police box at the head of the Meadows Walk, named Tupiniquim, you wouldn’t expect to find such mouth-watering crepes. Crepes that also happen to be 100% gluten-free! The celiac owner here has been serving her fresh homemade crepes in Edinburgh for over 9 years and has perfected not only the gluten-free batter but also the fillings that complement each  other. Whether you choose a savory crepe with pulled pork, cheese, and spinach or a sweet crepe filled with melted chocolate and berries you can expect for it to be big, filling, and flavorful.

As for safety, the celiac owner, said: “My son and myself are very sensitive to gluten, and I would never give my customers anything I can’t eat. I take my disease and my customers seriously.” I truly felt safe eating here, so I highly recommend it. If you want to enjoy the best gluten-free street food in Edinburgh make a b-line to Tupiniquim, you won’t be disappointed. Open from 12-6pm, cash only.

Green Police Box, Lauriston Place, Edinburgh EH3 9AU, United Kingdom | Visit Website

Loudons Cafe and Bakery

While in Edinburgh, the best way to start your day is at Loudons! Homemade gluten-free scones, french toast, pancakes topped with bacon and banana, English muffins with smoked salmon and poached eggs, and even a proper gluten-free full English breakfast, are you drooling yet? At Loudons the options are truly endless, both for celiacs and with those who have a dairy allergy as well. Celiacs are well catered to and extra precautions are taken to avoid cross contamination. The popular Loudons Cafe is easily one of the best gluten-free restaurants in Edinburgh and well worth a visit! Book in advance as lines can get pretty long. Loudon’s now has a new location on New Waverley in Edinburgh.

94B Fountainbridge, Edinburgh EH3 9QA, | Visit Website

Mum’s Great Comfort Food

Craving some comfort food and a taste of traditional Scottish cuisine? Head to Mum’s! You’ll be surprised to find that the menu here is practically gluten-free and where it’s not it can be modified to be. Mum’s specialities, gourmet sausages and mash are yours for the taking as all their sausages are gluten-free, (except for the veggie sausages) and all but three mashes are gluten-free. Beside their specialities, you can also devour lamb shepherd’s pie, sausage casserole, pies, and stews. Did I mention they offer a gluten-free haggis, one of Scotland’s most famous foods? It was delicious! As for the staff, they assured me that I could eat there safely, and answered any questions I had about cross contamination. Mum’s perfect comfort food without the hefty price tag will have you eating there on more than one occasion. Reservations recommended, the place gets packed quickly.

 Celiac Note: The mustard condiment on the table is not gluten-free, it contains wheat.

4A Forrest Rd, Edinburgh EH1 2QN, UK | Visit Website

Mamma’s American Pizza 

If it’s the best gluten-free pizza in Edinburgh you are after, you can find it at no other than Mamma’s in Grassmarket. After 15 years of perfecting their gluten-free pizza, you can expect nothing short of a phenomenal result. All of their specialty pizzas (9” or 12”) can be made gluten free. However, if none of those are to your liking, you can make your own as they have over 40 toppings to choose from including Scotland’s national food, haggis. They also have three gluten-free beers to choose from off the menu.

As for safety, the chef was more than happy to come out and speak to us and answer any questions we had about cross contamination and how they cater to celiacs. All of the gluten-free pizzas are made and prepared in a separate area, and to prevent cross contamination they use polenta rather than regular flour to toss the pizzas. Mamma’s makes gluten-free pizza an easy choice when hunting down safe options near the Edinburgh Castle.

28 – 30 Grassmarket, Edinburgh EH1 2JU | Visit Website

La Locanda 

La Locanda is a popular favorite among celiacs in Edinburgh, and for good reason. This small Italian restaurant caters to celiacs well by offering an array of safe gluten-free dishes from breakfast to dinner. Almost all their breakfast options can be made gluten-free. As for dinner, expect to have choices like bruschetta, pastas, and of course dessert!

61 Cockburn St, Edinburgh EH1 1BS, UK | Visit Website

Gluten-Free Friendly Chain Restaurants

Other options in Edinburgh for gluten-free food are chain restaurants. In Edinburgh, you’ll find popular chains like Pizza Express and Cote Brasserie which are both certified by the U.K. celiac association along with Zizi’s, Bella Italia, Nando’s and more. 

Gluten-Free Hotels in Edinburgh 

Rutland Hotel

The Rutland Hotel is a glamorous hotel on Prince Street with great views of Edinburgh Castle. Their restaurant, Huxley, has a dedicated gluten-free menu with an impressive amount of breakfast options including full Scottish breakfast, eggs benedict, and smashed avocado.  Rutland also has apartments with fully equipped kitchens.

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Fraser Suites Edinburgh

Just off the Royal Mile and a stone’s throw away from Edinburgh Castle is the boutique hotel, Fraser Suites Edinburgh. Housed in a beautiful 130 year-old building, Fraser offers service apartments which include kitchens,. A great feature if you want to cook your own meals once in a while.

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Airbnb

Airbnb rentals are always a great option when traveling gluten-free. With an entire apartment rental you can have the peace of mind that what you make in the kitchen is truly gluten-free and won’t make you sick. For recommendations, check out our list of the best Airbnbs in Edinburgh.

Gluten-Free Friendly Supermarkets

Food shopping for gluten-free products in Edinburgh is fairly easy as most supermarkets stock a wide range of gluten-free products, some with their own aisle. Some popular gluten-free brands in the UK include Genus, BFree, Free From, and Schar. Remember to look for the certified EU gluten-free symbol on the package.

Marks and Spencer (M&S) – M&S is a large supermarket chain in U.K. that has its own gluten-free brand “made without wheat” which is made in a dedicated facility. The range of products is enormous, and they even have ready made food in the fridge section including bread, pasta, you name it. Please note that the gluten-free packages have a light green label on them, be sure not to mistake them for some of their non-gluten-free products which have a bit of a darker green label.

Real Foods Grocery Store – The whole foods of Edinburgh, Real Foods has a range of Free From products as well as fresh produce.

Tesco Express – Has their own gluten-free brand, Free From.

Sainsburys – Also has its own Free From brand

Well there you have it, your guide to traveling gluten-free in Edinburgh. Enjoy this lovely city and if you find any safe gluten-free restaurants during your trip, please share them with us below!