8 Gluten-Free treats in Langford

8 Gluten-Free treats in Langford

Photo: Origin Bakery (Instagram)

Gluten-free eating has become increasingly popular in the last few years, as those with Celiac disease have been joined by many others who simply find they feel better when removing gluten from their diet. Local restaurants have been quick to adapt, and many now offer gluten-free options or even special gluten-free menus, along with appropriate staff training when it comes to maintaining a gluten-free environment and avoiding cross-contamination.

Those with gluten allergies and sensitivities now have an abundance of options, from specialty gluten-free eateries to inherently gluten-free treats like tacos. Tasting Victoria has spent the past several weeks compiling a list of delicious gluten-free treats around the Westshore. So without further ado, here are our top picks for every occasion.

For Comforting Baked Goods: Origin Bakery

Origin Bakery has long been a staple for gluten-free foodies in Victoria, and now the Westshore is lucky to have its very own outpost. While plenty of bakeries offer gluten-free options, it’s refreshing to enter a shop knowing you can comfortably order anything on the menu.

Origin excels at both sweet and savoury treats by using a huge variety of gluten-free flour blends. Rather than using a single master flour, they tailor each blend to best suit the product, because a cupcake shouldn’t have the taste or consistency of a sourdough loaf.

According to owner and operator Tara Black, the almond slice is a must-try. “It’s not too sweet–almond cake base with marmalade and marzipan on top. We could never take it off the menu, there’d be a riot!” She also recommends the vegan ganache cupcake, which is “rich, chocolatey, perfect for those with a sweet tooth!”

Origin Bakery
@originbakery
105 – 3039 Merchant Way

For All Your Taco Needs: La Taquisa

Corn tortillas were gluten-free long before gluten-free diets were commonplace, and they continue to be a delicious choice. La Taquisa, housed in the Goldstream Village mall, boasts some of Langford’s top tacos and other corn-based treats. 

What was once a small food cart is now a small chain of restaurants across Greater Victoria, but it continues to be family-run. Co-owner Sindy Bueno hails from Guadalajara, Mexico, and La Taquisa relies on her family’s traditional recipes. So their claim as “Victoria’s most authentic tacos” is well justified.

The handmade corn tortillas are gluten-free, as are the sopes, gringas, and tortilla soup. Gluten-free eaters can choose between a number of meat or veggie taco fillings, including the beef and fish al pastor, chicken tinga, pork chorizo, veggie rajas, veggie chorizo, veggie cauliflower, and beans and cheese. Tasting Victoria loved the chicken tinga, and the veggie chorizo is amazingly similar to its meaty counterpart.

La Taquisa
@lataquisa
768 Goldstream Ave.

For a Taste of Italy: 900 Degrees Wood Fired Pizza

A good gluten-free pizza crust that matches the crisp chew of the wheat flour version is no mean feat. But 900 Degrees is nailing it with their housemade gluten-free crust, available on any one of their pizzas.

As the name suggests, each pizza is cooked in a 900-degree wood-fired oven, imported straight from Naples, Italy. Both traditional Neapolitan thin-crust pizza and more modern New York-style pies are available but stick with the former to enjoy a true taste of Italy. 

There are dozens of topping combinations to choose from, including vegan and vegetarian options. Definitely don’t pass on the Funghi, which combines Cremini mushrooms, garlic, thyme, Parmigiano, a squeeze of fresh lemon, and a drizzle of olive oil. Meat lovers should check out the Genovese, named by CTV News as the best thin crust pizza on Vancouver Island. It features house fennel sausage, pepperoni, hot calabrese salami, crispy Prosciutto bacon, and pickled red onions.

900 Degrees Wood-Fired Pizzeria
@900.degrees
2401 Millstream Rd.

For a Special Night Out: House of Boateng

House of Boateng is Langford’s premier fine dining restaurant, and gluten-free foodies will find plenty to enjoy there just like everyone else! If you want to treat yourself or a loved one to a special night out, this is the place to do it. And if you’d prefer a special brunch out, this is the spot for that too!

The menu changes seasonally, but gluten-free options (as well as vegan and dairy-free) are always available and highlighted on the menu. Right now, for example, you could start with a delightful chilled coconut pea soup, follow it up with sous vide strip loin, and polish off a decadent flourless chocolate cake for dessert.

House of Boateng
@houseofboateng
2854 Peatt Rd.

For Bar Snacking: Six Mile Pub

The oldest pub in BC, Six Mile Pub sets the standard for gluten-free pub food in Victoria, and its location makes it the perfect stop after a summer day spent enjoying Thetis Lake. Their menus clearly designate gluten-free items, they make their own gluten-free flour blend in-house, and they maintain a separate deep fryer for gluten-free items.

While the menu is full of delicious gluten-free options, the perogies are why you are here. Trust me. Featuring smoked onions, old white cheddar, and housemade sauerkraut, they are an absolute must-try! Pair them with a bunch of bar snacks to share with friends, like the Pakora-style Kale Chips, Calamari, and Kogi Cauliflower Bites.

Six Mile Pub
@sixmilepub
494 Island Hwy

Treats at the Market: BglutenfreeVictoria

BglutenfreeVictoria is a one-woman operation run by gluten-free baker extraordinaire Tanja Blondin. Though located in Sidney, Westshore residents can now find her tasty selection of treats at the Goldstream Famer’s Market every Saturday all summer long. 

Bglutenfree specializes in European-style pastries, artisan bread, and other sweet and savoury snacks. If you have the chance, don’t sleep on the gluten-free croissants. They’re every bit as buttery and flaky as their wheat-based counterparts – no mean feat. They’re available in plain, almond, or chocolate, and it’s honestly impossible to choose just one!

BglutenfreeVictoria
@bglutenfreevictoria
Goldstream Farmer’s Market, Veterans Memorial Park

For Crowd-Pleasing Burgers: Bin 4 Burger Lounge

Bin 4 Burger Lounge is an amazing Victoria success story. What was once a single restaurant downtown is now a chain of seven eateries around the province, including locations in Kelowna and Vancouver. BC burger lovers can’t get enough of the creative and flavourful burgers, perfectly summarized by their tag line “international flavours, local ingredients.”

Though Bin 4 doesn’t have a dedicated gluten free menu, it’s a hit among the gluten intolerant as most of the menu can be made gluten-free on request, and the staff is knowledgeable enough to answer any questions. All burgers can be served on a lettuce stack or a gluten-free bun, which is baked fresh daily at another local favourite, Origin bakery. And they have a dedicated deep fryer for gluten-free items.

Tasting Victoria loves the My Big Fat Greek Burger, featuring BC lamb and local goat cheese. For vegetarians, the Mr. Bean Burger is a protein-packed winner, including chick peas, black beans, quinoa, and almonds.

Bin 4 Burger Lounge
@bin4burgerlounge
716 Goldstream Ave.

For a Taste of the Tropics: Baan Thai Restaurant

Already listed among our favourite Thai restaurants, Baan Thai has a well-earned spot among the best gluten-free eateries as well, with an entire gluten-free menu available. Thai food, with its emphasis on vegetables, meat, rice, and fish sauce more than soy sauce, is often naturally gluten-free, making Baan Thai a great choice for gluten eaters and avoiders alike.

You can enjoy starters like the classic peanut satay grilled chicken or Sum Tom, the Thai papaya salad that perfectly demonstrates the sweet-spicy-sour-salty balance for which the cuisine is known. Follow that up with one of the many gluten-free curries served over rice. Or explore something a little more exotic and order the northern Thai specialty, Larb. It combines wok-fried local meat with lime dressing, ground roasted rice, herbs, onions, and chilli for something somehow as hearty as a meat dish and as refreshing as a salad.

Baan Thai
@baanthaiwokandbar
3031 Merchant Way

Have you tried any of the places on this list? What did you think? Do you have a favourite gluten-free dish or restaurant in the Westshore that we missed? Is there a top downtown spot that you wish would open a Westshore location? Let us know!

Written by

Julia Bobak

Guest Writer