5 tips for serving gluten-free guests

About 3 million people in the United States alone suffer from celiac disease.

About 3 million people in the United States alone suffer from celiac disease, a genetic autoimmune disease that damages the small intestine. Gluten, a protein found in grains like barley, wheat and rye, triggers the disease.

To provide guidance to restaurants when serving customers who suffer from celiac disease, the National Restaurant Association and William Weichelt, director of the NRA's ServSafe program, offered these five tips:

1. Take it Seriously

Take all gluten-free requests seriously to ensure your guests receive the meal they requested. This will turn them into loyal, return customers.

FREE DAILY NEWSLETTER

Like this story? Subscribe to Operations!

Hospitality professionals turn to Operations as their go-to source for breaking news on guest rooms, food & beverage, hospitality trends, management, and more. Sign up today to get news and updates delivered to your inbox daily and read on the go.

2. Be Honest

If you’re asked a question about a gluten-free item and you’re not sure of the answer, tell the customer and offer to ask the chef or manager if they have more information.

3. Have Processes in Place

The more policies and procedures you have in place, the more confident you’ll be serving gluten-free diners, and the more confident they’ll be if you can define steps taken to prepare their meal.

4. Clean, Sanitize and Repeat

Even if you just cleaned and sanitized your prep area and equipment, take precautions and do it again. This reduces potential for cross-contact when preparing food.

5. Train Staff to Help Make Menu Suggestions

Making sure servers know about gluten-free options on your menu will help improve your customers’ dining experience. It also reduces the need for staff to consult with the chef or manager on ingredients in certain dishes.

Suggested Articles

After six months as EVP/chief accounting officer, Peery will replace Rachael Rothman as the REIT's EVP/CFO.

Should all of 2020's scheduled hotels come online as planned, China will open the most new rooms next year since the cyclical peak in 2014.

The luxury goods company is set to acquire Tiffany & Co. in a deal worth $16.2 billion.