Friday, September 12, 2008

Useful Resources - Gluten Free Desserts

One of the difficult areas of being gluten free is dessert time. Regular cakes, cookies, brownies, pies, ice cream cones and more are now off limits. This area can be a real drag. Luckily a few dessert goodies were not taken from us. For example, there are ice creams and Italian ices out there which are completely gluten free. Here is my listing a few places I have tried recently when hungering for that dessert snack.

Dairy Queen
DQ has a page on their website specifically for GF goodies. You can have their Chocolate, Vanilla or swirl soft serve as long as you get it in a plastic cup. No cones or waffle cones allowed. If you so please, you can also get the following toppings on your soft serve ice cream; Chocolate, Hot Fudge, Marshmallow, Butterscotch, Strawberry or Caramel. DQ also usually has a freezer with take home frozen goodies. The following frozen treats are also GF; Fudge Bar, Vanilla Orange Bar and Dilly Bars. DQ also goes on to list that many of their Blizzard choices are GF but I usually stay away from these because there is only one machine used to make Blizzards and a non-GF Blizzard (like cookie dough) could have been mixed just before yours. There are six DQ's in the Raleigh area (2 in Cary, 3 in Raleigh and 1 in Clayton).
NOTE: None of DQ's ice cream cakes are Gluten Free.

Baskin Robbins
Baskin Robbins is a favorite of mine (especially when attached to a Dunkin Donuts). I have loved their Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream my whole life. Luckily for me, it and many others are gluten free. See Baskin Robbin's Allergen page here for more information. A good thing to remember here is to have the person getting the ice cream get a new scoop or thoroughly clean the scoop they are about to use to avoid cross contamination. There are 11 locations around Raleigh (6 in Raleigh, 1 each in Knightdale, Cary, Morrisville, Clayton and Fuquay).
NOTE: None of Baskin Robbin's ice cream cakes are Gluten Free.

Cold Stone Creamery
Cold Stone is relatively new to the Raleigh area compared to the first two places in the list. I got the chance to experience their regular products before I was diagnosed Celiac. Everything I had tried previously was excellent. This is the place that will take an entire candy bar and mix it into your ice cream of choice. Cold Stone's Allergen fact sheet can be found here in pdf format. It looks like they may update this regularly so in case that pdf changes, their Nutrition Information page is located here. They again have a lot of yummy choices available. It's also a good idea at Cold Stone to ask them to clean or get new scoops and ice cream utensils before preparing your treats. There are 5 locations around Raleigh (2 in Raleigh, 1 each in Cary, Apex and Garner).
NOTE: None of Cold Stone's ice cream cakes are Gluten Free.

Goodberry's is a local creamery that serves up frozen custard in a variety of flavors. From this page about their ingredients, you can clearly see they are all about only the best ingredients along with not adding anything unnecessary to their product. Their simple ingredients list is milk, cream, eggs, pure cane sugar and honey. Naturally you can see all of these things are Gluten Free. Where to watch out at Goodberry's is their products and toppings that contain items like cookies or brownies. Same goes with their scoops here as well. There are 7 area Goodberry's locations (3 in Raleigh, 2 in Cary, 1 in Garner and Wake Forest). They also have their product available at the RBC Center during Carolina Hurricanes games.
NOTE: Goodberry's frozen custard cakes are made to order and can be GF. Call to inquire.

Rita's Italian Ice
Rita's is a little bit different but just as yummy. They feature Italian Ice, Cream Ice, Custard or a mix of Ice and Custard called Gelati. All are extremely tasty. I first discovered Rita's while visiting family in the North Eastern U.S. during summer time. But recently, several Rita's have opened here in the Raleigh area. Rita's Ice Nutrition page can be found here. There is a link on that page to Allergen Information in pdf format that can be found here. All their Italian Ice and Custard flavors are Gluten Free. Just watch out for some of the Cream Ice flavors like Birthday Cake and Cookie's n Cream. Rita's has the following area locations; Raleigh (coming soon at The Shoppes at Oberlin Court), Knightdale, Apex and Cary.

Carvel also offers a ton of tasty ice cream goodies. Since they do not have any retail stores in this area (except at RDU Airport), I will focus on their ice cream cakes. Their ice cream cakes can be found in just about any grocery store in Raleigh. They have the following FAQ page about Gluten where you can clearly see which of their items are Gluten Free. From this page Carvel states...

"Most of our ice creams are gluten-free. However, the chocolate crunchies that are found in our ice cream cakes and the sprinkles put on top are not gluten-free. If you contact a Carvel retail store nearest you, they will be more then happy to substitute the crunchies for something else, such as fudge. They will also be more then happy to not put any sprinkles on the cake."

As you can see from the above, Carvel seems to be the most flexible in making special order ice cream cakes without crunchies and sprinkles. To bad they don't have any retail stores in the area in which to order from. So the word on these cakes if you see them in the grocery store is to stay away, they are NOT Gluten Free.



Anonymous said...

They actually have a store in "The Factory" up in Wake Forest that is walk in

Anonymous said...

Hi, you've forgotten my FAVORITE ice cream shop in the area... Maggie Moo's. They have a website list of ingredients for those with allergies and they have several that are GF. I would advise staying away from those with "MFS*". I seem to have a reaction when I eat those flavors and dont when I stay w pure GF ingredients. AND they have always been happy to scoop with a freshly washed scoop. I dont do mix ins tho because I am afraid of cross contamination.
Allergen portion of website at:

Anonymous said...

Whoooops, forgot about Henrys Gelato in Cary. I asked about being GF (and Casein free as I did that for 10 weeks) and this is the response:
(his website

All of our sorbettos are gluten and lactose-free. Feel free to come in and let me know who you are so we can talk further.
Subject: Henry's Gelato Contact Form Submission

Hello, I recently had to go on a Gluten Free and Casein (milk product) Free diet. Are there any of your gelatos that I can eat? Thanks!

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