Gluten Free Restaurants in Santa Monica

Two things I love to do, live in Santa Monica and eat out gluten free within a couple of blocks of my home.  OK, maybe that was three but it is always great if you can find so many restaurants within a few blocks of each other to eat a gluten free meal.

I live in downtown Santa Monica where I can walk to just about anything I need, including a good food.  This is also a popular  vacation and meeting destination.  In fact an amazing group of women will be descending on this city this week to come together for a retreat and meeting.  I’m very excited to see them and share these restaurants where I have found great gluten free food.

Some of these restaurants can be found on Open Table where you can make a reservation.  For those you will see the Open Table logo.  For others they either don’t take reservations or you can call ahead.  If you have a large group call and they will be able to let you know the availability.

Here are my favorites in no particular order.

JiRaffe  {California/French}

Chef/Owner Raphael Lunetta offers market directed rustic California/French cuisine. Entrees range from $23-$34 including an amazing Black Angus New York Steak for two served with potato parmesan gratin, baked tomato, sauteed farmers market black kale, port wine shallots, green peppercorn natural veal reduction served in a cast iron skillet.  This was my birthday dinner and even with the two of us eating a full plate we had leftovers.

JiRaffe Bistro Mondays is a prix fixe menu that is always amazing.  This restaurant uses fresh local ingredients which means they can easily accommodate gluten free.  They know exactly what is in each dish they serve.  When you arrive let your server know of your needs and they will gladly serve you an amazing gluten free meal.

502 Santa Monica Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90401     310.917.6671 – phone | 310.917.6677 – fax

Monday 5:30 – 9:00 PM
Tuesday – Thursday 5:30 – 10:00PM
Friday – Saturday 5:30 – 10:30 PM




Real Food Daily  {Vegetarian/Vegan} RFD outside

Right around the corner from JiRaffe is Real Food Daily or RFD.  Chef Ann Gentry is the creator, founder and operating owner of Real Food Daily, the only restaurant in the Los Angeles area that serves a 100 percent vegetarian (vegan) menu using foods grown exclusively with organic farming methods.  Their menu is noted which is gluten free along with other allergens.  I really like their gluten free, dairy free pizza.  It’s very filling.  I don’t think I’ve ever been able to finish it in one RFD Pizza sitting so if you may want to share that.  Leave some room for their chocolate layered cake and chocolate chip cookies, both gluten free.  Make sure you share your needs with the server and the level of your sensitivity.  I find that key even if a menu is marked gluten free.

514-516 Santa Monica Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401  Phone: (310) 451-7544  Fax: (310) 451-7154

Weekend Brunch 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Mon. – Fri 11:30 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.

Sat. – Sun 10:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.


 Bar Pintxo  {Spanish Tapas Bar}

Chef David Bar Pintxo Chef David creates a wonderful Spanish Tapas bar with delicious food and great drinks.  It’s a cozy, warm, old world decor that transports you to Spain before you even order!  Enjoy their Six for Six happy hour, Tuesday’s Paella on the Patio or Thursday the Chef’s Tasting Menu.  I do have many favorites here for sure.  I love the chorizo con tomate, tortilla española,  gambas al ajillo, and of course the surtido de jamón which is 1/2 plate jamón serrano, 1/2 plate jamón ibérico.

When you arrive first ask for our favorite waitress, Andee, and tell her I sent  you.  She’s great and always gets the message to the kitchen for our needs.  I’ve actually been eating here for a few years and it’s always been an amazing meal and served gluten free.

109 Santa Monica Boulevard, Santa Monica, CA (310) 458-2012

Monday – Tuesday (12pm – 10pm)

Wednesday – Friday (12pm – 11pm)

Saturdays (noon – midnight) & Sundays (noon – 10pm)

The Misfit Restaurant  {California}

Chef Jordan Lynn creates a “Back of the Bar” and very accessible comfort food menu.  Some items on their menu are marked gluten free, like their Mac & Cheese (still on my must try list).  Most other items you will need to check.  Let your server know when you arrive and they are very skilled at walking you through the menu.

Brunch Misfit They serve fresh foods on small plates from the local farmer’s market. There are many great vegetarian choices but my youngest son’s favorite is a burger on a gluten free bun and their huge plate of fries.  It’s really good but I’m also a fan of the roasted broccoli with garlic too.

Everyone here has always been great at attending to a gluten free meal, even for brunch on the weekends.

225 Santa Monica Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401   t. 310.656.9800
Doors open at 12 noon Monday-Friday  |  Doors open at 11 am Brunch Saturday-Sunday  |  Open late every night

True Food Kitchen  {California} True Foods Med Salad

The basis for this restaurant is Dr. Andrew Weil’s anti-inflammatory diet. The menu is meant to take popular trends in cuisine and pair them with healthy living.  It starts with their list of drinks which include Kale Aid and a Medicine Man which is my favorite.  Then you have starters, salads, pizza, sandwiches and entrees.  My favorite starter is the hummus with gluten free pita.  Their Mediterranean Chopped salad is very filling with quinoa and for a treat their chocolate pudding topped with pistachios and walnuts is decadent.

True Foods Pudding Their menu is marked where items are gluten free but I have found an error on the menu.  They serve farrow with chicken and mark it gluten free and as you know farrow is wheat.  I’ve not found anything else mis marked.  Also you can get items like the turkey burger on gluten free pita and it’s not marked gluten free.  Just let the server know about your needs and confirm the meal before digging in.  I will say the gluten free pita looks different from the regular pita and they can tell just by looking at it.

This restaurant is located in the bottom of the Santa Monica Place, which is the local shopping mall with other restaurants and clothing stores.

395 Santa Monica Place, Suite 172 , Santa Monica California 90401Tel: 310.593.8300  Fax: 310.593.8301

Mon – Thu 11:30am – 9pm Hummus and gluten free pita
Fri 11:30am – 10pm
Sat 10am – 10pm
Sun 10am – 9pm

Sat – Sun 10am to 4pm

Zengo  {Latin/Asian}

Chef-owner Richard Sandoval spins regional ingredients into beautifully balanced dishes designed for sharing.  They also have an extensive drink menu which spans from Tequilas, wine, cocktails and even Japanese sakes.

Before you are seated ask for the gluten free menu.  They have a lot of great small plate options as well as some full plate dishes.  Some of our favorites are the Roasted Chicken Salad, Wagyu Roll with shrimp and sriracha, Peking Duck-Daikon Tacos and the Shrimp and Chorizo Lettuce Wraps (warning serrano peppers and hot).  Make sure you let your server know if you are very sensitive like me.  There is a sauce that is served with the Wagyu Rolls that is not gluten free and a good waiter will catch that.

Zengo is also in the Santa Monica Place on the top level.  They even have a private elevator on Santa Monica Blvd just passed the Nike store, or you can just ride up the two levels on the escalators.

395 Santa Monica Place, b/w Broadway & Colorado, Santa Monica, CA 90401  Tel. 310.899.1000

Lunch- Mon-Fri 11:30AM to 4:00PM

Dinner- Daily 4:00PM to close

Happy Hour Daily 4:00PM to 7:00PM

Bottomless Brunch Sat-Sun 11:30AM to 3:00PM




Sonoma Wine Garden  {Mediterranean/California}

Sonoma Wine Garden showcases signature bold Mediterranean flavors with a California touch.  Like many restaurants around here they use fresh local produce.  I’ve not eaten dinner here, but enjoy their small plates on the roof top bar with some of their great glasses of wine.  I have asked about many of their dishes and they have always had very descriptive answers for why something was available gluten free or not.  I’m looking forward to a full meal here.

They also have a wine club and if it’s your birthday you get a free glass of wine.  If you like to try many different wines, you can purchase an Enomatic card and choose from a wide variety.

Lunch:  M-F  11:30AM-2:30PM

Dinner:  Su-Th  2:30PM-10:00PM, F-Sa  2:30PM-11:00PM

Garden Brunch:  Sa-Su  11:00AM-2:30PM

Happy Hour:  M-F  3:30PM-6:30PM

Border Grill  {Mexican}
Chefs Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger, of Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters” and Food Network’s “Too Hot Tamales” has created a menu of complex authentic dishes based on the home cooking of Oaxaca and the Yucatan.  It’s a fun location to grab a meal, either for lunch or dinner.
Border Grill You can download their gluten free lunch and gluten free dinner menu before you even head out the door.  When you arrive let them know of your needs and if you are very sensitive.  Many restaurants here will have gluten free foods fried in the same fryer as gluten items.  Just check on the items you’re interested in ordering.   Also if you like margaritas, they do have some tasty options.
1445 4th St., Santa Monica, CA 90401  phone: 310.451.1655  fax: 310.394.2049
Monday through Friday – 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday – 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Border Brunch
Saturday and Sunday – 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Monday through Thursday – 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Friday – 4 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Saturday – 4 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Sunday – 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Happy Hour
Monday through Friday – 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Friday and Saturday – after 9 p.m. to close
Sunday – All Day
Fig- Fairmont Hotel  {California}

Chef Ray Garcia is a master at creating straightforward delicious foods using local fresh ingredients.  His staff can walk you through the menu to see what is gluten free or can be prepared this way.  Any meal of the day here will leave you very satisfied.  With the Fritatta Verde for breakfast, Fish Tacos for lunch and Mary’s Organic Chicken for dinner, it’s all good.  Dinners range in price from $21-$46.  Tuesday through Saturday they have half price dinners 5-6pm.  They don’t take reservations for this and the line starts before the doors open, so you might want to arrive a little early to get your spot (save me a space in line).

101 Wilshire Boulevard Santa Monica CA, 90401   phone 310.319.3111

breakfast Daily 7am-11am
lunch Mon-Sat 11am-2pm
dinner Tues-Sat 5pm-10pm
sunday brunch Sun 11am-2pm




Blue Plate Taco {Mexican}

Blue Plate Taco This is a really wonderful location for a restaurant.  It’s on Ocean Avenue right across the street from Palisades Park and overlooking the Pacific Ocean.  The first thing I do upon arriving is order their guacamole.  It’s a huge bowl to be shared for sure and it’s amazing.  Check and see if their oil is new and if it’s been used for anything with gluten.  Sometimes yes, sometimes no.  I’ll ask for jicama and corn tortillas which works great instead of tortilla chips to dip.

They have wonderful specials and use fresh local produce and fresh seafood.  The tacos are traditional style which is small with two tortillas stacked.

Their menu is not marked gluten free but they can walk you through what is safe.  Just let your server know and they will talk with the kitchen to confirm the specials too.

1515 Ocean Avenue, Santa Monica (310) 458-2985  Open daily 8:00am- 9:00pm

Hillstone   Corner of Wilshire Blvd and 2nd Street

R&D Kitchen   1323 Montana Avenue, Santa Monica, CA  90403  310-395-3314 Deviled Egg RD Kitchen, gluten free go to girl, easy, healthy, gluten free living, Diane Eblin

These two restaurants are owned by the Hillstone group.  They are very consistant and have always provided us with a delicious meal and all gluten free.

Hillstone is just around the corner from the 3rd street Promenade and you’ll want reservations to avoid a long wait.  For a more casual meal head over to R&D Kitchen on Montana Avenue.  They have an amazing salad stacked high with delicious vegetables, roasted chicken and tasty nuts.  Also their deviled eggs are my favorite.

Both restaurants hours:

Monday – Wednesday 11:30am-10:00pm

Thursday-Friday 11:30am-11:00pm

Saturday 11:00am-11:00pm

Sunday 11:00am-10:00pm

Loteria  {Mexican}

Fun restaurant on the Promenade.  They have a gluten free menu but discuss with your waiter and double check what is being served as you would with any meal.  They have some great tacos, salsas and guacamole.  Stop in here if you’re wandering around the 3rd Street Promenade and you’re hungry.

1251 3rd Street Promenade, Santa Monica, CA 90401   T. 310.393.2700

Sun – Thur: 11am to 11pm
Fri – Sat:   11am to 12am

Buddha’s Belly  {Asian}

This restaurant is still on my list to visit.  It was recomendad by Karina, the Gluten Free Goddess who used to live here too. Make sure you check with your server and check ingredients that might not be listed on the menu.

205 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA 90401    Phone: (310)458-2500   Fax: (310)458-6737

Santa Monica’s Farmer’s Market

Farmers market Saturday and Wednesday mornings  8:30am – 1:00pm

Arizona Avenue (between 4th & Ocean)

Sunday on Main Street – 2640 Main Street  (in Heritage Square)  9:30am-1:00pm

If you are in town you must really try to make a trip to the farmer’s market.  Grab some fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts and even some flowers for your room.  Have a picnic at the park, pack a lunch for your meeting or just a snack.  If you have a place to cook up some meals make sure you pick up some farm fresh eggs.  They are beyond amazing.

If you get there early, you never know which of the chefs that I listed above will be out in the market.  Chances are many.  Here they were gathering for the LA Food events.

Santa Monica Chefs

I hope this listing will help you as you look for gluten free meals in Santa Monica.  This is by no means a complete listing.  I will be happy to keep searching out more favorites for you and will keep this list going.


11 Responses to Gluten Free Restaurants in Santa Monica

  1. Gluten Free Diva January 14, 2013 at 7:22 pm #

    What a fantastic and thorough post! We are going to have such a great time, Diane! If we eat at all these restaurants (which I'd like to do), we won't fit into any of our clothes for the photo shoot:).

    • Diane Eblin January 16, 2013 at 4:16 pm #

      Can't wait to see everyone here. So glad it's warming up too.

  2. hunterslyonesse January 14, 2013 at 9:53 pm #

    I hope you're in Santa Monica the next time I'm in L.A. so we can go to at least one of those wonderful looking places for a meal together. 😀

    • Diane Eblin January 16, 2013 at 4:16 pm #

      Please let me know when you'll be here. Would LOVE to see you.

      • hunterslyonesse January 16, 2013 at 5:43 pm #

        I will definitely let you know. There is a chance we'll be there beginning of August.

  3. Rochelle January 16, 2013 at 1:12 pm #

    Great post! I live in Los Angeles and frequently go to Santa Monica. I love True Food Kitchen (the baked spaghetti squash is my current favorite) but I haven't branched out much to try other gluten free restaurants in the area. I'll be sure to check some of these out. Thank you!

    • Diane Eblin January 16, 2013 at 4:17 pm #

      Rochelle, I know what you mean about getting the same dishes more than once. I'm totally addicted to those gluten free pita and hummus. I need to branch out too. Let me know if you find some other favorites.

  4. Iris January 16, 2013 at 7:55 pm #

    Wow, this is an awesome resource! Thanks, Diane!

    • Diane Eblin January 19, 2013 at 3:18 pm #

      You're very welcome Iris. If you come to town let me know and we'll visit a few!

  5. food tucson February 13, 2013 at 4:56 am #

    [….] Next month I wanna go Restaurants in Santa Monica with my GF as well! . Just a quick note to tell you that i have a passion for the topic "Restaurants in Santa Monica" at hand. Thanks!!!!!!! [….]

  6. Em Harris February 27, 2013 at 9:04 am #

    I just got back to Pennsylvania from visiting my daughter in Santa Monica! I so wish I had seen this earlier! Add to your list Feed Body and Soul on Abbott Kinney next door in Venice. Their bowls are wonderful! Skip the dessert though. They also do not use processed sugar (and possibly not butter) so their desserts that we had were DRY.