A Celiac's Guide to Eating Gluten Free in Rome, Italy

Did you know that Italy is actually one of the MOST celiac and gluten free friendly places to visit? I have celiac disease and visited Italy for the first time last year, in November of 2022, and was blown away by all the gluten free pizza, pasta, cannoli and more. 

If you're going to Rome, Italy and need to eat gluten free, you need to read this celiac's guide to gluten free cannoli, pizza & more in Rome.

And now I'm sharing all of my favorite places to eat gluten free in Rome, Florence and Venice -- plus, my top tips for traveling to Italy while gluten free in general! So let's dig into the first edition of my guide to eating gluten free in Italy...starting with Rome!

*Everyone with celiac disease has different boundaries, and that's OK. If you are looking to dine at only Dedicated Gluten Free restaurants/bakeries, there are several included and clearly marked in this list. I am only including restaurants that I personally tried and had good experiences with, but restaurant options and policies can change. Please treat this as a guide only, and use your own judgement on what options fit your individual dietary needs.*

Basics to Know About Eating Gluten Free in Rome

How common is gluten free food in Italy?

100% Gluten Free Cafes, Bakeries and even grocery stores are relatively common in Italy, especially in bigger cities like Rome, Naples and Milan. Despite myths otherwise, this isn't because celiac disease is any more prevalent in Italy. It still affects about 1% of the population, the same as most other places in the world. But as Dr. Marco Silano, chair of the Italian Celiac Association, points out, food plays a HUGE role in Italy socialization and culture. So it's especially important to make sure everyone can participate, even if they can't eat gluten. 

The Italian Celiac Association (AIC) works with restaurants to ensure they have proper gluten free protocols and training, and you can find MANY restaurants with entirely dedicated kitchens, prep areas and ovens. And since Italians with celiac receive up to a 140-euro monthly stipend for gltuen free food, you can find gluten free food in many pharmacies (as well as all grocery stores). 

How can I find celiac-safe spots in Italy?

I primarily used the Find Me Gluten Free app to check for gluten free friendly spots near me, but you can also pay 2.99 for a 2-week trial of the Italian Celiac Association's app that shows all restaurants approved by the AIC for celiac customers. Many restaurants even have signs out front saying they have gluten free options or are approved by the Italian Celiac Association, so it's decently easy to find options just walking around as well.

Is the language barrier an issue if I don't speak Italian?

My boyfriend and I don't speak any Italian and we only had one or two instances of language issues during our 10-day trip. For the most part, Italy is very English friendly. I would recommend learning some key gluten free phrases in Italian, like:

  • Senza glutine = gluten free
  • celiaca/celiaco = celiac
  • senza lattosio = dairy free
  • amido di frumento deglutinato = made with gluten free wheat starch (which is celiac safe but not safe if you have a wheat allergy)

You can also purchase gluten free "restaurant cards" that explain celiac disease and your dietary needs in Italian on Amazon, or I've heard of great things about this one.

What gluten free food can I bring back to the US from Italy?

Customs allowances can change, so always check the US Customs website for the most up-to-date info. But at the time of my trip (and of publishing this in on December, 31 2022), each person can bring $800 worth of goods from Italy. This includes food items like baking mixes, snack bars, chocolate and candy, and most processed items as long as they don't contain meat, cheese or animal products. Find more info here.

Can I eat wheat in Italy if I have celiac??

You can eat gluten-removed wheat flour, which is more common in Europe and specifically formulated to remove the gluten and be safe for celiacs. Regular wheat starch is NOT gluten free and you should only eat wheat starch if it is in a product that is tested and verified to be glute free. And if you have a wheat allergy, this is still not a safe option for you.

Many gluten free pizzas and baked goods in Italy taste as good as gluten BECAUSE they are made with gluten free wheat starch, which results in a much more gluten-like texture. But if you want to avoid gluten removed wheat starch while visiting Italy, that is totally possible. You will just need to ask more questions about ingredients or look for "amido di frumento deglutinato" (made with gluten free wheat starch) on packaging.

A Celiac's Favorite Gluten Free Spots in Rome, Italy

Pizza En Trevi - AIC Certified Pizza near the Trevi Fountain

Our first meal after arriving in Italy was pizza and we were super impressed with the celiac protocol at Pizza in Trevi. This pizzeria right near the Trevi fountain in Rome is accredited by the Italian Celiac Association, and all their gluten free orders are prepared in a separate area and oven. 

All of their speciality pizzas can be made gluten free, and I went with the Pizza with Salmon for something different! Once I ordered a gluten free meal, I was given a separate place mat and utensils. They also can accommodate dairy free diets (by removing cheese) and have gluten free pasta, salads and dessert as well. 

If you're going to Rome, Italy and need to eat gluten free, you need to read this celiac's guide to gluten free cannoli, pizza & more in Rome.

The gluten free pizza was SUPER crispy and all the ingredients tasted extremely fresh. My boyfriend also loved his gluten pizza, so it was a win-win. They also have all their ingredients clearly listed on the menu for the gluten free crust, so if you have additional dietary restrictions or want to avoid gluten-removed wheat starch, Pizza en Trevi is a great place to try.

La Pasticciera Senza Glutine - 100% Gluten Free in the heart of Rome

This 100% gluten free bakery and cafe is small but packed with delicious finds. They have many sweet & savory options, including custard-filled donuts donuts and suppli (savory Italian rice balls), which were our two favorite items from here. They have dairy free & vegan options too.

If you're going to Rome, Italy and need to eat gluten free, you need to read this celiac's guide to gluten free cannoli, pizza & more in Rome.

The owner was very sweet and also happy to give out gluten free restaurant recommendations, so don't feel shy to ask. There isn't really space to eat in the store, but it's a short walk to the Roma Termini or the Colosseum. 

Celiachiamo Lab - 100% Gluten Free near Vatican City, Rome

If you’re ever near Vatican City in Rome, Italy, you MUST go to Celiachiamo Lab. It is an AMAZING 100% gluten free bakery / bistro that also functions as a 100% gluten free grocery store. They have gluten free croissants, cannoli, mini pizzas, sandwiches, and every gluten free dessert you can imagine. This ended up being my FAVORITE spot we visited in all of Italy during our 10-day trip...mainly thanks to the gluten free Cannoli and chocolate-filled donuts. The shop workers are super friendly and speak decent English, so I recommend asking about dairy free options or gluten free restaurant recommendations while you're there!

If you're going to Rome, Italy and need to eat gluten free, you need to read this celiac's guide to gluten free cannoli, pizza & more in Rome.

As for the grocery shop section, they have over 4,000 products (!!!), including packaged goods, frozen items and more. I did find that gluten free speciality food in Italy is a tiny bit cheaper than in the US, so Celiachiamo Lab is also the perfect spot to stock up on gluten free treats to bring back to the US. 

La Soffitta Renovatio - AIC Certified near Vatican City, Rome

Our favorite restaurant of our Italy trip (for the food and service) was definitely La Soffitta Renovatio near Vatican City in Rome. It is AIC certified and almost everything on the menu can be made gluten free. All gluten free meals come with a gluten free flag and they have many lactose free / dairy free options too. 

I ordered the house-made gluten free ravioli — my first ravioli I’ve had in a restaurant since my celiac diagnosis 9 years ago. It was melt-in-your-mouth tender, super flavorful and I loved the spinach and cheese filling.  My boyfriend and I also split a gluten free pizza, and the gluten free pizza crust was super soft and pliable, fluffy on the edges and the toppings were super fresh. My boyfriend’s gluten carbonara was his fave dish from Italy.

If you're going to Rome, Italy and need to eat gluten free, you need to read this celiac's guide to gluten free cannoli, pizza & more in Rome.

We were too full for dessert but they also had a HUGE display case of goodies. This is one restaurant we will always eat at when visiting Rome! 

Grom Gelato - 100% Gluten Free in Rome

This gelato shop is 100% gluten free — and that includes their ice cream cones, and even baked goods like brioches, biscotti and gelato cookie sandwiches at some locations! They also have a variety of dairy free sorbet options, and my boyfriend and I both LOVED how creamy and rich our chocolate gelato (with chocolate pieces throughout) was.

If you're going to Rome, Italy and need to eat gluten free, you need to read this celiac's guide to gluten free cannoli, pizza & more in Rome.


You can find Grom throughout Italy, including at most large train stations for a yummy travel day. And you can also find their prepackaged gelato, gelato on gluten free cones and other goodies in many grocery stores around Italy. 

Cimarra 4 - AIC Certified in Rome near Coliseum 

Cimarra 4 can make ALL of their dishes gluten free and most already are + they have dairy-free options (including lactose-free cheese). They are made in a separate kitchen and oven, and our food came out SUPER quickly too.

If you're going to Rome, Italy and need to eat gluten free, you need to read this celiac's guide to gluten free cannoli, pizza & more in Rome.


I got the gluten free calzone (my first calzone EVER) and it was so fluffy and tender. My boyfriend also really enjoyed his pizza, and this is the perfect place to eat dinner before going to see the Coliseum at night.

Taliani Roma - 90% Gluten Free Bakery in Rome

This bakery/cafe isn't 100% gluten free but all their gluten free baked goods are made with dedicated equipment in a different location than their few gluten items. There is a risk of “air contamination” in their baking area (from what I understood through the language difference, this refers to the fact that outside air can get inside the baking space as they cook in a historic building that can’t be sealed).

If you're going to Rome, Italy and need to eat gluten free, you need to read this celiac's guide to gluten free cannoli, pizza & more in Rome.

BUT because I’d heard many positive celiac reviews and all their GF foods are separated in the bakery, I felt safe eating and these were seriously some of the prettiest and TASTIEST pastries I had in Italy! As always, my goal is to give y’all enough information for you to make the right decision for YOU. If you're dairy free, this was also one of the most dairy-free bakeries I found in Rome because all dairy-free options are clearly labeled in the display case!

Gluten Free Finds at Roma Termini - From AIC Bakeries, Gluten Free Kit Kats and More

On the 2cd floor of Roma Termini next to the bathrooms are dessert stores with a section dedicated to Napoleoni Gluten Free products. Napoleoni Gluten Free is accredited by the Celiac Association of Italy, and I found cookies, brownies, high-scale cakes and more in the shops. I only got a chance to try the cookies, but they were super yummy.

If you're going to Rome, Italy and need to eat gluten free, you need to read this celiac's guide to gluten free cannoli, pizza & more in Rome.

In a convenience store on the bottom level of Roma Termini, I found 2 of my new fave chocolates: gluten free seasonal KitKats (shaped like Santa's and labeled "Senza glutine" on the back) and Cookies n’ Creme Chupa Cups that are also marked senza glutine. Highly recommend on stocking up on both of these! And if you aren't in Italy yet but want to get your hands on some gluten free kit kats, you can also find some on Amazon (imported from Canada) here. More deets on the Canada KitKat labeling info here.

And if you have time, check out the pharmacy on the second floor of Roma Termini. It has a bunch of Schar Gluten Free products (they have SO much more variety in Europe than in the US) + other gluten free brands!

Pin this Gluten Free Rome, Italy Guide for Future Use!

If you're going to Rome, Italy and need to eat gluten free, you need to read this celiac's guide to gluten free cannoli, pizza & more in Rome.

I'd love to hear if you've ever been to Italy since going gluten free, or what you would be most excited to eat there! I will be posting my guide to eating gluten free in Florence and Venice soon!

Comments

  1. awesome gluten free pizza review -- makes my mouth water , keep sharing more of your adventures.

    ReplyDelete
  2. mgm99win เว็บไซต์คาสิโนออนไลน์ชั้นนำของเมืองไทย ที่เปิดให้บริการด้าน คาสิโน บาคาร่า สล็อต บอล หวย รูเล็ต ไฮโล และ อื่นๆอีกมากมาย


    สล็อต666 เว็บไซต์คาสิโนออนไลน์ ทีมาแรงี่สุดที่ไทยและต่างประเทศ

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular Posts