'Breakfast like a king' is the advice. It’s the most important meal of the day says your mum. Yet on a gluten free diet, this can be challenging.
Still, with a bit of investigation, you'll find increasingly inventive and inclusive options across the capital for that morning, or leisurely late morning, meal. Each of the places we've listed here has consistently catered to those in search of a gluten-free breakfast or brunch with confidence, flair AND without batting an eyelid.
Borough Market's flagship restaurant has a broad range of traditional, market-sourced breakfast options catering for GF with ease and knowledge. Using a visibly separate toaster for only gluten-free bread and serving it with separate butter and preserves shows that they really understand. It also means much more of the menu is open to GF diners. Eggs benedict, smoked haddock & spinach, breakfast sandwiches or a simple boiled egg. Add to this Mini Magoo’s gluten-free granuseli with tea-soaked prunes and yoghurt, omelettes and fry ups — there's a lot of choice. Sadly no GF sausage or black pudding yet though.
Roast, The Floral Hall, Stoney Street, SE1 1TL
Much of this Aussie fusion-style breakfast menu is open to gluten-free eaters, as they stock GF bread. Avocado with beetroot-cured salmon, slow braised smoky beans, and brown rice kedgeree feature. Wash it all down with one of their renowned flat whites, made using their own seasonal blends of beans.
Lantana, 13 Charlotte Place, W1T 1SN
This Scandi-inspired café glows with hygge (that's cosiness to you and me), and is a gluten-free heaven too. Using interesting alternative grains (rarely seen amaranth and wholesome brown rice, as well as their own rolled gluten-free oats) across the menu, you'll be spoilt for choice. Expect to find unique sweet and savoury flavour combinations for a different type of all-day breakfast; Nordic spiced oats, apple, beetroot and cranberry porridge, channa masala brown rice, and oats with egg and kale. There are also lots of dairy-free options as well as heavenly smoothies, chai and Workshop coffee.
26 Grains, 2 Neals Yard, WC2H 9DP
Gluten-free French toast you say? Workshop's homemade gluten-free bread (which actually may contain traces of gluten as it's not made in a dedicated facility) can be turned into toast, benedict or the most heavenly, light, never-want-it-to-end French toast. Add to that baked eggs and chorizo, seasonal fruit salads and eggs, and you've got yourself a great GF breakfast. Top it off with an expertly-made coffee.
Workshop, 27 Clerkenwell Rd, EC1M 5RN
Duck and Waffle
The glamour and the views are a draw for this city restaurant, but it's the gluten and dairy-free signature waffles that lure GF folk here. Book in advance to secure a taste of these signature sweet or savoury goodies (the rich leg confit and fried duck egg is a truly indulgent start to the day). Weekend brunch features ox cheek benedict waffles, fruit salads, duck congee and a pumpkin bellini. But let's be honest — it's all about the waffles.
Duck and Waffle, 110 Bishopsgate, EC2N 4AY
Artisan Gluten Free Bakery
The opportunity to have whatever you like at breakfast when you have to eat strictly gluten free, is a rare experience. Artisan GF loaves are a signature product here — freshly baked and perfect as bread for proper bacon sandwiches, avo or eggs on toast. That’s not all: you can also get pancake stacks, eggs benedict, own-made granola, and even a completely GF full English breakfast. No questions about cross contamination to contend with and nothing to miss out on.
Artisan Gluten Free Bakery, 167 Upper Street, Islington, N1 1US
The Modern Pantry
Chef-owner Anna Hansen understands what coeliacs face, so caters without fuss for gluten free customers, even at breakfast with her inventive, international, modern dishes. Breakfast pudding with brown rice, quinoa and maple roasted apple; poached eggs with halloumi, spinach and lemon grass roasted tomatoes; or a dhansak spiced veal mince omelette with puffed wild rice is just a sample of the eclectic range. For simpler tastes there are poached fruits and yoghurt, Vegemite soldiers and boiled eggs or toast and kumquat marmalade. They have gluten-free bread as standard and will modify any unsuitable dishes.
The Modern Pantry, 47-48 St Johns Square, EC1V 4JJ and The Alphabeta Building, 14 Finsbury Square, EC2A 1AH
For a healthier start to the day, this natural food café — run by a qualified naturopath — offers gluten and refined sugar-free things that you truly want to eat. Addictive granola, GF banana bread, brown rice porridge topped with goji and cinnamon, and nutrient rich and flavour-packed smoothies (think blackberries, bananas, almond milk and cashews) feature. Sadly no GF bread though.
Retreat Cafe, 2nd Floor, Kingly Court, W1B 5PW and 228-230 Upper Richmond Road, SW15 6TG
Article by Kim McGowan from Gluten Free Gathering