Our European Adventure: How to eat gluten free in Rome


Roma, Roma, Roma…the city of beautiful art, history, faith, and…FOOD!!

Italy is known for their delicious wine, pizza, and pasta.  However, I can not eat gluten, so the land of bread and pasta was a bit daunting to me.  I worried I would starve while drooling over my husband’s delicious meals.  Boy oh boy was I wrong!

I have been gluten free for about 4 years now.  I have a sensitivity and even the littlest bit makes me very sick.  I have learned to do my homework when it comes to food before I go anywhere new.  Just to be safe, I packed in my suitcase some gluten free granola bars and other little snacks in case we were in an area that I couldn’t find food.  This came in very handy while traveling on trains or waiting in lines.

However, eating gluten free in Italy was not as difficult as I thought.  In fact, Italy is one of the most gluten-free friendly countries.  I learned that most restaurants have gluten free options.  I don’t mean the lame American “gluten meals” of a burger without the bun or a salad without croutons.  I am talking amazing, melt-in-your-mouth pasta and pizza dough you would never guess are gluten free.  I was in heaven once I figured out what to look for.

gluten-free-cardMany restaurants will have a sign outside their restaurant that says “senza glutine”.  This means they have a myriad of options for you to eat.  However, if you don’t see that sign you can simply ask for “senza glutine” options or give them this card, which explains your needs in Italian.  I did not end up using this but it was helpful to have just in case.

The most gluten-friendly treat that we found was gelato.  You can find this on pretty much any corner, in any flavor.  One of my favorites was the Lindt gelato store.  My hubby got a cappucino, and I got chocolate gelato.   Oh how rich, but light, at the same time!



Honestly, every gelato stop is worth it.  We ate it every day.  In the summer, it was a pretty necessary treat to beat the heat.


Gelato near the Coliseum


Gelato in Vatican City

For lunch each day, we stopped at several pizzerias near our hotel.  I fell in love with Caprese salads and had one every day.  🙂  For dinner, we ate at Taverna Barberini near our hotel.  They have an amazing dinner buffet and you can get any pasta gluten free.  In Trastevere, we ate at La Botte (I had the best pizza I have ever eaten, gluten free or not.) and another restaurant not far from that, which I don’t remember the name of.


As you can see, the food in Rome was amazing, and it was honestly easier to eat gluten free in Rome, than in America. Just writing this post is making my mouth water.  

Moral of the gluten story:  Don’t fear Italian food…enjoy every bite of it!  Salute!


See more of our European Adventure:

Our European Adventure: Trastevere, Rome

Our European Adventure: Rome Day 3

Our European Adventure: Rome Day 2

Our European Adventure: Rome Day 1

Our European Adventure: The Booking Details



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