gluten-free vietnamese food

Stuffed squid is delicious Vietnamese food

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Sophe
Traveller with a gluten intolerant partner
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Vietnamese pancakes Gold Coast

If you are gluten intolerant or celiac you can eat relatively stress-free at a good Vietnamese restaurant. All the noodles on a Vietnamese menu are made from rice, tapioca or mung bean. If you see the word “bun” or “pho” you are safe knowing they are both a rice noodle-based soup and gluten-free. The Vietnamese don’t use as much soy as you would think. Much of the flavour comes from fish sauce, so if you are vegetarian be aware that fish sauce will be in most dishes. You can enjoy the gluten-free Vietnamese food right here in Chirn Park.

Did you know pho is actually the noodle – not the soup

It is completely made from rice, making it gluten free.

Pho on the Gold Coast
Author making fresh rice paper for rice papers rolls.
Gold Coast Gluten Free Vietnamese restaurant
Vietnam's most popular dish. Pho.
Gold Coast Vietnamese Gluten free food
Fresh noodles in market in Hoi An, Vietnam

Gluten-free Vietnamese Options

Did you know that the Quan 55 menu is full of gluten free options? And in the author’s opinion the best dish on the menu is the Grilled NZ mussels. The mussels are grilled with shallots and a butter sauce and topped with peanuts. I imagine that if you have a nut allergy the peanuts can be left off but they do add a delightful crunch to the dish.

Of the eight small plates on the quan menu, four are gluten-free. These include the popular rice paper roll with prawn and pork, and the grilled stuffed squid.

More tasty gluten free options

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The gluten-free options continue in the medium plates with three of the six options being gluten-free (at the time of writing).

The beef salad is a fresh and tasty salad full of flavour with mints and cabbage, it is served with the traditional Vietnamese dressing Nuoc mam.

There are some menu options that are GFO (gluten-free option available). The Tamarind Soft Shell Crab is one of my favourites. The crab is usually cooked in a combination of cornstarch and plain flour. Wynn has made this for us using just cornstarch and it is delicious. My husband isn’t coeliac though, so you should check whether the oil has been used for plain flour before you commit yourself if you are coeliac. If you can have the crabs then go for it. One of the best options on the menu.

My other GFO recommendation would be the Beef Stew. It’s delicious and if you avoid the bread (served on the side) then it is gluten-free. I have to be totally honest and tell you that the crunchy bread really elevates this meal. But my husband wasn’t complaining when he enjoyed the stew with rice.

Even more gluten free Vietnamese food

Everything on the large plates menu is gluten free (or GFO as just explained above).

Yes everything can be gluten-free.

There are 14 delicious dishes that the gluten intolerant can enjoy (at the time of writing) knowing there will be no nasty after-effects. Work your way through the menu starting with the superbly flavoursome beef noodle soup (pho). The sea barramundi in pepper sauce is a crowd favourite the barramundi filets are simmered in a pepper caramelized sauce that is just amazing. Then move on to the ginger prawns, sizzling chicken and rice noodles with tofu.

Fresh Vietnamese food gluten free
Gluten free vietnamese restaurant
Gluten free vietnamese food southport

So much of Vietnamese food is just fresh vegetables and herbs such as lemongrass, ginger, cinnamon and chilli. Lime is used widely, as is fish sauce. And rice is a staple in the Vietnamese kitchen. All this makes it very easy to enjoy a gluten-free Vietnamese meal at Quan55.

These Gluten Free Menu Items Are Available (accurate at the time of writing, check menu for updates)

Chilli Garlic Prawns (GF) + Toasted Bread

Sizzling Steak (GF)

XO – Chilli Fried Rice (Hot)

Vegetarian Fried Rice

Prawn Toast

Half Chicken with Chili & Lemon grass (GF)

Bowl of Rice/ Noodles

Prawn Crackers

Pickled Daikon & Carrots

Salad Mix

Steamed Vegetables

Vegetable Stir Fry & Tofu – Vegetarian (GF)

Rice Noodles with Tofu – Vegetarian (GF)

Shaken Beef (GF)

Ginger Prawns (GF)

Chicken Curry & Taro (GF)

Beef Stew + Toasted Bread (GF)

Pork Belly & Eggs + Pickled Veggies (GF)

Sizzling Chicken with Lemon Grass & Seasonal Veggies (GF)

Whole Chicken with Chili & Lemon grass (GF)

Sea Barramundi Fillets in Pepper Sauce (GF)

Phở Beef Noodle Soup – (GF)

Lemon Grass Chicken & Spring Roll Noodle Bowl – Vegetarian Option Available (GF) Peanuts

Tamarind Soft Shell Crab Salad

Rare Beef Salad Peanuts – serve with prawn crackers (GF)

Lạp Xưởng Fried Rice (GF)

Crispy Prawn & Pork Crepes

Chicken & Mushroom Dumpling (4) (GF)

Marinated Quail

Grilled Sea Scallops with Roe (2) – Peanuts (GF)

Vegetarian Spring Rolls (4)

Pork Spring Rolls (4)

Grilled Stuffed Squid (GF)

Chicken Wings (5)

Rice Paper Rolls (2) (GF)

The menu has GF next to the gluten-free items so you shouldn’t have too much trouble sorting out which items you can eat. Some items can be presented gluten-free if you ask. For instance, the rare beef salad is not marked GF but can be if you avoid the crackers that it is served with. It’s even a good idea to check with the staff on the night. The crackers may or may not be gluten-free, depending on who the supplier was. The restaurant has to err on the side of caution when labelling the menu but you might find that the current batch of crackers are okay.

My husband has also eaten the soft shell crabs without any complaints. We checked with the kitchen on the night and found they were covered in cornflour prior to frying. So no issues there. If you’re fully coeliac you might need to check what else was fried in that oil. These are our observations only and not recommendations.

As a side note, the spring rolls are almost always gluten-free in Vietnam but rarely are in Australia. In Vietnam, they are made with rice papers (especially in the north). The fresh papers they have there fry up quite nicely. In Australia, they have adapted to local ingredients and are almost always made with wheat-based pastry.

 

Enjoy

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