Friday, January 6, 2012

Gluten-Free Watercooler-City Bodega

Quite a while ago I was meeting a friend at Sushi Seki for dinner and as usual my friend was late.  She was going to be so super late that I thought I'd walk around the area for a bit.  I was on the Upper East Side around 62nd Street and 1st Avenue.  There was a Bed, Bath and Beyond, a few other restaurants, a Duane Read and a local bodega/quik market.  I went in.  I figured hey there has GOT to be some GF things here, let me take a look.  It was a small market but filled wall to ceiling with goodies, junk food and health food.  I actually found TONS of GF snacks both junky and healthy. 

My point for this post is that most bodegas in NYC WILL have GF options, you just have to read the labels and scrutinize your search.  I found popcorn, breakfast bars, chips, lentil chips, rice noodles, pad Thai noodles, juice drinks, yogurts and more.  All GF.  So if ever in need while traveling in NYC or you just need to pick up a few things here and there, these bodegas are your best bet.  You'd be surprised exactly how much gf options you can actually find.  Now of course, if you went to the sales associate who works at one of these bodega's and asked about GF, they would most likely look at you as if you were a space alien.  That has happened to me.  I used to get blank stares.  So not everyone is knowledgeable but if YOU know what you are looking for you may just find it.

This is what I found...

Popcorn India Brand (gf) Bacon Ranch (other flavors too are soo good!!)

Popcorn India Brand Movie Popcorn flavor

Popcorn India Brand Kettle Flavor

Fage Yogurt Total 0% or 2% all naturally GF

GF Naked Popcorn (also soooo good!!!! my fav is Rosemary & Olive Oil)

Buddy Fruit Drinks (great for kids, DF, GF and all natural)

Baked Lentil Chips (not my fav!! but you might enjoy!)

And below the Baked Lentil Chips are Terra Chips that now have a GF stamp

Pop Chips! Always a fabulous option!!

GF Pad Thai Rice Noodles-This version is GF but some are NOT! and will fool you!! Buckwheat is ok for Celiac's but this brand's Buckwheat noodles? They are NOT GF.  So always check the label.  See below for the Not GF Buckwheat option.
Soba Buckwheat Noodles from this brand are NOT GLUTEN FREE.
Do not be fooled.

Quinoa Grain-Can't go wrong here!! A great and nutritious grain.

Japanese Rice Cakes-Sooo good!! And totally GF.

Let's not forget those amazing sauces from San-J which are ALL GF

Roasted Seaweed

Food Should Taste So Good Chips are also GF

So you can see.  There are tons of options here and they are all from my local NYC bodega.  Who would have thought I could just walk into this tiny market and find so much.  We all assume that the only place to get GF is Whole Foods or a known place that carries GF.  My point is, you never know when you will find a find.  And the above are my GF Finds.

Enjoy!! Happy New Year!! xoxo Julie


  1. Julie,
    The Near East original rice pilaf has orzo in it. Not gf

  2. Hi El!

    Actually the original recipe does not, but the chicken flavor does. Regardless, thank you so much for pointing this out! I have spoken on the phone with Near East today and inquired what was gf and they cannot give any kind of list bc there is so much gluten and wheat in their other products that there might be exposure or cross contamination during the processing of the pilaf all flavors, so even though there might not be gluten ingredients Near East cannot confirm bc of processing.

  3. So I have sent a retraction to my readers and revised my City Bodega post.

    Thank you!!!


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