Gluten-free restaurants and products in Israel: a celiac’s ESSENTIAL guide to enjoying Israel

Gluten free IsraelAs awareness of gluten and the problems it can cause to many becomes ever more widespread, this is our guide to gluten-free eating and restaurants in Israel. You might be surprised, but a lot of restaurants in Israel have adapted their menus for celiacs, and supermarkets also stock an ever-increasing number of gluten-free products.

We don’t pretend to be experts in gluten-free living, but ever since my two year old daughter was diagnosed as celiac a couple of years ago, we’ve become very aware of the need for a gluten-free menu when eating out, and the weekly shopping also means more of a hunt for specific ingredients (or a lack of them, preferably!)…

So for those of you who need to stay gluten-free, we sympathize, but hopefully this guide will help you greatly to enjoy some of the culinary delights of Israel. The guide and list of restaurants will be updated whenever we find new info – and if you come across something we’ve missed, please add a comment below. Bitavayon (Bon appetit)!

For those of you interested in reading more about the benefits of a gluten-free diet, this is a good place to start

Gluten free products in Israel

There are an ever-increasing number of gluten-free products in Israel shops and supermarkets, but here’s a list of some of the more snacky foods you can safely buy and eat:

  • Bamba – Israel’s unofficial national snack, a peanut-flavored morsel that the kids (and adults) love!
  • Aproppo – one of Israel’s old-timers, this corn-crispy snack has been around for ever.
  • Dubonim – another great snack the kids will love.
  • HaShachar chocolate spread – yes, chocolate spread in Israel is often seen as the “breakfast of champions”, and this old Israeli favorite always works a treat on gluten-free bread.
  • Nutella chocolate spread – our preferred poison, Nutella is the “adult” and more expensive alternative to HaShachar. Obviously not an option for those allergic to nuts.

There are also various pastas, breads, and sweets that are gluten free: if the product you’re checking has ללא גלוטן (gluten free) on it, then it’s safe to eat. If you’re after even more sweets/snacks for the kids, watch out for items made by a company called Carmit, they have a whole range of goodies.

Another good option for gluten-free products in Israel is the firm Adittas, which has outlets throughout the country, but their main shop is located in Hangar 13 in Tel Aviv Port. Call them on 1-700-706-506 for details.

Daura Beer IsraelAnd for those of you who love beer but thought a gluten-free option was never going to happen, you’ll be pleased to know that Daura, voted the world’s best gluten-free beer, is also available in Israel. It’s only recently been imported so may be a bit hard to find…

Gluten free restaurants in Israel

In this section we’ve listed some of the more well-known restaurants in Israel that have gluten-free options.

There are an ever-growing number of restaurants in Israel that have a gluten-free menu, or are at least very aware of gluten, and very often, with a word to the chef or waiter you can sometimes get confirmation that they know how to prepare something for celiac sufferers. They might not have a completely gluten-free kitchen, but they will probably be able to cook with gluten-free utensils and ingredients.

The most important phrase you’ll need to know when ordering: lelo gluten, which means “without gluten”.

Among the restaurant and coffee shop chains that are available in most big towns in Israel, you can count on Cafe Joe and Greg’s for some good gluten-free options. Likewise, Pizza Hut and Pizza Meter are good for pizza options throughout the country, and Black Bar & Burger for more meaty fare; if you need your Asian gluten-free fix, Giraffe branches throughout the country are usually good. We haven’t listed them all separately below, but if you see one in your area, know that they should be OK.

Gluten free restaurants in Tel Aviv

We’ve compiled a list of the restaurants in Tel Aviv that are known to have good gluten-free options. If you know of somewhere that we’ve missed off this list, please add it to the comments below.

Beta-Pizza, 3 Hataarucha St, Tel Aviv Port (Tel: 1599-50-9090)

Achoti, Italian (Hawaiian pizza recommended!), 53 Yehuda Maccabi (Tel: 03-5672554)

Dixie Grill, Steak House, 120 Yigal Allon (Tel: 03-6966123)

Cafe Marco, Italian-style cafe, 39 Gordon St. (Tel: 03-5291775)

Cafe Italia, Italian (Artichoke pasta recommended!), 6 Kriminitsky (Tel: 03-5612888)

Amore Mio, Italian, 100 Ibn Gvirol (Tel: 03-5244040)

Orna & Ella, one of Tel Aviv’s top restaurants, 33 Shenkin St (Tel: 03-6204753)

Mezze Cafe, Vegetarian, 51a Ehad HaAm St (Tel: 03-6299753)

Hudson Brasserie, Meat restaurant, Habarzel 27 (Tel: 03-6444733)

Eat Meat, Meat restaurant, 68 King George (Tel: 03-5252153)

Black Bar & Burger, Meat restaurant, 23 HaBarzel St (Tel: 03-6441000) & Cinema City at Galilot Junction (Tel: 03-6991100)

Makom Shel Basar, Meat restaurant, 65 Shabazi St, Neve Tzedek (Tel: 03-5104020)

Buddha Burgers, Vegan, 53 Yehuda HaLevi St (Tel: 03-5101222)

Tandoori, Indian, 2 Zamenhoff St. (Tel: 03-6296185)

Pekin, Asian, Moshe Sneh 54 (Tel: 03-6490737)

Giraffe, Asian, 49 Ibe Gvirol St (Tel: 03-6916294) & 21 HaArbaa St (Tel: 03-6851154)

Falafel Baribua, yes, falafel, they have a few branches, notably at 14 Yad Harutzim St & 24 Raul Valenberg St (Tel: 1599-504405)

Falafel Hippo, 64 Ibn Gvirol St (Tel: 03-6093394) & 70 Dizengoff St (Tel: 03-6298080)

Falafel Benin, 2 Tchernikovsky Street, Tel Aviv

Sabich Tchernichovsky, 2 Tchernichovsky Street, Tel Aviv

Gluten free restaurants in Jerusalem

This is a list of the restaurants in Jerusalem that are known to have good gluten-free options. If you know of somewhere that we’ve missed off this list, please add it to the comments below.

Ben Ami, Dairy menu, 38 Emek Refaim St (Tel: 02-6510070)

Parash Coffee, Cafe, Kiryat Yovel  Shopping Center (Tel: 02-6417389)

Agas 1, Vegetarian, 13 Eliahu Yaakov Banai St, Mahane Yehuda Market (Tel: 054-3133442)

Black Bar & Burger, Meat restaurant, 18 Shlomzion Hamalka St (Tel: 02-6246767)

Agas Vetapuach, Italian, 6 Safra Square, Yaffo St (Tel: 02-6230280)

Tandoori, Indian, Crown Plaza Hotel, Givat Ram (Tel: 02-6588867)

Pizza Hut, Zalman Shneor St, Nayout (Tel: 1700-50-60-70)

Tito Bravo, Pizza, 12 Shamai St (Tel: 02-6255585)

Gluten free restaurants throughout the rest of Israel

This is a list of the restaurants beyond Tel Aviv and Jerusalem that are known to have good gluten-free options. Again, if you know of somewhere that we’ve missed off this list, please add it to the comments below.

EILAT

Pastory, Italian, 7 Tarshish St (Tel: 08-6345111)

HAIFA

Cafe Louise, Cafe, 58 Moriya St (Tel: 04-8349950)

Lazino Pizza, Pizza, 86 Hatichon St (Tel: 04-8322366)

Pizza Roma, Pizza, Rambam Medical Center (Tel: 04-8525415)

Pizzale, Pizza, 46 Hanita St (Tel: 04-8220475)

HERZLIYA

Tanduri, Indian, 32 Maskit St (Tel: 09-9546702)

SEA OF GALILEE

Marinado, Meat restaurant, Kibbutz En Gev (Tel: 04-6658555)

Roberg, Meat and salads, Levanim (Tel: 04-6715656)

MODIIN

Pizza Pazaz, 23 Haodem St (Tel: 08-9701119)

RAANANA

Neto Lite, Cafe, 14 Menachem Begin St (Tel: 054-7712562)

Pizza Tic Tac Toe, 198 Ahuza St (Tel: 1-700-702626)

Edison, Grill bar, 282 Ahuza St (Tel: 09-7743131)

RISHON LEZION

Falafel Baribua, Falafel, 5 Rothshild St (Tel: 1-599-504405)

Fanchesca, Italian, Sea Side Promenade (Tel: 03-9414151)

Fanchesca Ba-Ir, Italian, 11 Moshe Becker St (Tel: 03-956767)

Loft, Meat bar, 15 Moshe Becker St (Tel: 03-9563216)

***************

BON APPETIT!

25 Comments

  1. Stephanie

    July 26, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    just wanted to let you know that not all “bamba” is gluten free. the ones that are have a big “lelo gluten” on the front of the package.

    • Ashley

      July 26, 2012 at 6:47 pm

      You’re right Stephanie, they changed this very recently. Previously all Bamba was produced on one production line, now they’ve split the process…

  2. Andrea

    July 27, 2012 at 5:03 am

    And Titi Bravo in J’lem is no longer in existence!!!

  3. wheat free diet kit

    July 27, 2012 at 2:44 pm

    Terrific! I have been looking for info like this , thanks for posting, wheat free diet.

  4. tradbil

    August 22, 2012 at 9:53 am

    there’s also a gluten free burger at moses, although it’s not as good and also more expensive than black bar and burger

  5. Kate

    October 20, 2012 at 7:24 am

    Thank you for all of the information! I was recently diagnosed with celiac and am am spending a year in Haifa so I very much appreciate the help. Could you recommend a gluten-free brand of hummus? Also, is there a gluten-free symbol on packaged foods? I don’t speak Hebrew of Arabic and label reading has been a struggle. Any tips?

    • Ashley

      October 20, 2012 at 7:54 am

      Gluten-free hummus – haven’t come across this yet, and I’ve also started making my own (fairly easy to do), so not sure to be honest.

      I don’t think there is a nationally recognized symbol, but the words you should look out for, and that are typically on the front of the product, are ללא גלוטן.

      Here’s a good store I recently found with a good English section. Might help you out a bit.

      Good luck!

      • Kate

        October 20, 2012 at 10:37 am

        Thank you so much for your help, Ashley! I have felt so lost. It’s great to get a response!! I’m looking forward to learning how to make my own hummus!

  6. Kate

    October 20, 2012 at 11:04 am

    Ok, one more question. Any recommendations for a gluten-free granola bar I can find in local markets?

    • Ashley

      October 21, 2012 at 10:52 am

      Hi Kate,
      Glad to help!
      Hummus is fairly easy to make, just takes a bit of trial and error. The hummus tubs in the supermarket should in theory be gluten free but may come from a contaminated production line, difficult to know.
      Granola bars are almost everywhere, best bet is a “nature” shop (hanut teva), they’ll also have plenty of other goodies, just keep an eye out for the gluten free words ללא גלוטן
      Good luck!

  7. Kate

    October 23, 2012 at 9:22 am

    Hi Ashley,
    I just wanted you to know that I ordered some items off of the http://www.glutenfree.co.il website. It has been such a life saver! Just to know that I have some essentials while I figure everything out. It was also a good price and was delivered to me the next day! Thank you so much for your help!

    Kate

    • Ashley

      October 25, 2012 at 9:12 am

      My pleasure!

  8. Kerry

    October 27, 2012 at 9:45 am

    Does anyone know which of the tel
    Aviv restaurants are particularly careful about cross-contamination?
    Thanks!

  9. Linda Asher

    July 2, 2013 at 10:19 am

    BELINDA COFFEE SHOP, CANYONIT WOLSON, 9a DISKIN ST JEFRUSALEM has gluten free options on the menu
    Open 8 – 19.00 SUN- THURS / 8 – 14.00 FRI
    KOSHER MEHADRIN YERUSHALIM
    02 5633995

  10. Melissa

    July 21, 2013 at 4:04 am

    We have been traveling a lot this summer as half gluten free family – with pret severe reactions to cross contamination .

    Ben Ami in Jerusalem (on Emek Refaim) has a completely separate gluten free menu and they are very careful about cross contamination. In Tiberias, Deck’s has an outstanding meat and fish menu, and the only things off limits are the fries and desserts — they are very careful too, and will check everything. If you end up in Netanya, Batzal HaYarok can make a gluten free personal pizza (note, it’s not fantastic, but it’s decent) but it is not on the menu.

    Vaniglia ice cream on the tel aviv port marks all of their ice creams that have gluten, and they try hard to avoid cross contamination (they also have gf cones available). Kosher, no certificate (open on Shabbat). And cafe cafe, a few doors down, has a few gluten free options (not many, and they err on the side of caution, which is nice!)

    • Ashley

      July 21, 2013 at 9:20 am

      Thanks for the excellent info Melissa!

  11. jacobi yoav

    September 12, 2013 at 5:26 am

    Hi
    Thank’s for the site its very importent for celiack peapole. I have a small bakery gluten free in kiryat motzkin we have fresh evry day you can find here breads rolls bagells pitta bread pitta with zatar sambusak with many fillings pitza cakes corasons and more fresh evry day. Tell 04-6332424 17zabutinsky st. Kiryat motzkin ”
    מאפה gluten free” you can find me in facebook.
    Best regards
    Yoav jacobi

  12. Chris (Oregon)

    April 7, 2014 at 6:04 am

    Ashley,

    This is extremely helpful. Thank you. I’m considering a vacation/tour throughout Israel in June (2014). Do you think it’s doable to travel israel as a celiac?

    -Chris

    • Ashley

      April 8, 2014 at 7:17 pm

      Definitely!
      It might depend a bit if you’re ultra-sensitive, but even then, many eateries are aware of gluten and have special menus, as mentioned above. If you’re going to some real off the beaten track spots, you might want to take some “snacky” things with you.

  13. Jennifer

    June 14, 2015 at 8:43 pm

    My niece lives in Israel. She is telling me that gluten free foods are very costly. Her two children were just diagnosed with Celiac. She said a package of gf pasta is 18 shekels.
    I cannot find supermarket pricing in Israel like we have here in the States. Id like to hear your experiences about gf “bargains”.
    Thank you

    • Ashley

      June 15, 2015 at 2:00 pm

      Unfortunately, GF goods in the supermarket tend to be very expensive. There are bargains to be found now and again, but it is generally hard to get a good deal on things like bread and pasta. We actually make our own bread for our celiac daughter, partly because of the cost and partly because we can control what goes in it :-)

  14. Feigi Pam

    September 4, 2016 at 1:55 am

    Our vegetarian restaurant, Tree of Life, has a largely glutenfree menu. Choices include :
    Veggieburgers
    Stir-fries
    Quinoa
    Bean stews
    Corn quesadillas
    There are also a few kinds of glutenfree cookies, and our glutenfree bakery menu is expanding! We are located in Kikar Hameginim in the Old City of Safed, and can be reached at 0506960239

  15. Ruthie Pearlman

    January 28, 2017 at 5:18 pm

    My celiac granddaughter is coming to stay with me (in Mevaseret) for just over a week; ie two Shabbatot, starting this coming Friday. I’m pleased about Gregs because we have a branch in the Harel mall, but for example what about Shabbat challah?

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