Eating Gluten Free in Madrid

The Spanish may still be struggling with the definition of “vegetarian” (most veggie menus feature tuna!) but when it comes to gluten free in Madrid, the city’s restaurants, bars, and supermarkets are already ahead of the curve.

The Madrid Association of Celiacs and Gluten Sensitive People has been certifying the city’s restaurants as celiac-friendly for more than 15 years. And with more than 50 establishments on their list, there are plenty of options for diving into Spanish cuisine worry-free.

Eating gluten free in Madrid does not mean you have to miss out on the best of typical Spanish cuisine! Many of the most delicious and most traditional tapas in Madrid are naturally gluten free, such as tortilla de patatas (an egg and potato omelet-like dish) and huevos rotos con jamón (fried potatoes topped with over easy eggs and slices of cured Iberian ham).

Eating sin gluten in Madrid is totally doable if you know where to go. While many places in Madrid are celiac-friendly, it’s always a good idea to talk with the waiter before ordering to ensure your meal comes completely gluten free. Here are some of our top picks for where to eat gluten free in Madrid.

Please note: This list was accurate as of March 2014. Please double check these places are still in the same location before going!

Gluten Free Guide

Photo Credit: Stacy Spensley

Bakeries

Whether you’re in need of a mid-afternoon pick-me-up or a sweet something to start the day off right, Madrid’s bakeries are a haven of pastries, coffee and chatter. Only a handful of the city’s panaderias  and pastelerias have jumped on the gluten-free bandwagon. But those that have are definitely doing it right!

The Celicioso window display shows beautifully decorated and gluten free cupcakes - so delicious!
Gluten free cupcakes at Celicioso
  • Celicioso: Perhaps the most famous (and most delicious) gluten-free place in Madrid, Celicioso (Calle Hortaleza, 3) has a display case packed with all kinds of celiac-friendly treats. Enjoy a chocolate peanut butter cupcake or a slice of carrot bread in the cafe or grab a loaf of bread to go! Everything made here is 100 percent gluten free.
  • Oh Celia!: Located in the charming Antón Martín Market (the one we visit on our Huertas Neighborhood Food and Market Tour!) you’ll find the Oh Celia! bakery, selling delicious sweet and savory gluten-free pastries.

Beer

A huge part of Spanish culture, and thus of any visit to Madrid, is meeting up with friends to tomar algo or have something to eat or drink. That something, more often than not, is a nice cold beer. Gluten free eaters don’t have to miss out on this cultural experience in Madrid! Here are some great bars that serve up gluten-free beer:

  • Café del Jardin: A cute little café in the Malasaña barrio, Café del Jardín (San Mateo, 13) is perfect for relaxing with a cup of tea or tasting a gluten free cerveza under the sunshine in their back garden.
  • El Nerú: This cider house in the center of Madrid transports patrons to the North of Spain in the mountainous region of Asturias. At El Nerú (Calle Boradores, 5) you’ll find a variety of gluten-free ciders and two types of gluten free beer. They also have an extensive menu of tapas and raciones including gluten free options such as Hake fish in a cider-shrimp sauce and Asturian-style pork and beans.
  • Cerveceria San Julián: North of the city center in the Chamberí district you’ll find Cerveceria San Julián (Calle Alberto Aguilera, 30). This neighborhood bar offers two gluten free beers, Daura Estrella Damm and Ambar.
  • Evarsito Club: Two blocks from Plaza de España, Evarsito Club (Calle Marqués de Santa Ana, 11) is a place to catch a concert or a DJ set and do a bit of dancing with your gluten free beer. Typically the crowd here is a bit older.

Tapas

No trip to Madrid is complete without an evening of tapas, or hopping from bar to bar and eating small plates of delectable Spanish food. You can find naturally gluten free options like the tortilla and huevos rotos mentioned above at just about every tapas bar. But if you’re looking for something specifically and certifiably gluten-free head to these places:

A delicious tapa using gluten free bread is one of many options at Taberna la Concha - gluten free in Madrid can still be delicious!
Gluten free tapas at Taberna la Concha.
  • Taberna La Concha: This tiny tavern is easy to miss among the bar-packed street in Madrid’s tapas land (aka the La Latina barrio). La Concha (Cava Baja, 7) has a special gluten-free menu full of traditional Spanish tapas specially crafted for celiacs!
  • Bar Lambuzo: A charming Spanish family from Cadiz serves up Andalusian specialties at Bar Lambuzo (Calle de las Conchas, 9). If you indicate you are gluten free they will give you multiple options for enjoying a true evening of tapas.
  • Mu Madrid: A modern tapas bar, Mu Madrid (Calle Juan Álvarez Mendízabal, 44) indicates which plates on the menu are gluten free with a helpful SG (sin gluten) label.

Restaurants

If you’re in the mood for a stationary dining experience pop into one of the many delicious options for gluten free restaurants in Madrid. Experience an authentic Spanish comida with a three-course lunch menu or get a taste of Madrid’s immigrant culture with crusty pizza or savory crepes.

  • Pizza Sapori: This trendy pizza place is certified gluten free by the Celiac Association of Madrid. At Pizza Sapori (Calle El Camino del Cura, 10), you can build your own pizza or pasta from a variety of toppings and sauces. Lactose-free options are also available.
  • La Farfalla: This hole-in-the-wall restaurant in the immigrant neighborhood of Lavapies cooks up the odd yet delicious combo of Argentinian steaks and Italian pizzas and pastas. La Farfalla (Calle Santa Maria, 17) is certified by the Celiac Association of Madrid and also serve vegetarian dishes.
  • El Arrozal: If you are looking for gluten free paella in Madrid, El Arrozal (Calle Segovia, 13) is your place. They even have a separate gluten-free kitchen where they make some of the best gluten-free baguettes in town!

Grocery Stores

Almost all of Madrid’s grocery stores offer at least a few gluten-free items. Often times, though, they aren’t very clearly labeled and can be tough to spot, especially if your Spanish is shaky.

  • Mercadona: For a good gluten-free-friendly large supermarket we recommend Mercadona. All of the Hacendado brand items (Mercadona’s store brand) have been specifically tested for gluten and those which are completely gluten free are marked with a sin gluten label. Mercadona has two central-Madrid locations, one at Calle Villa de Arbancón sin numero near the Embajadores metro stop and one next to Retiro Park at Plaza de los Reyes Magos, s/n. 
  • Herbolarios Doemi Market: The Herbolarios Doemi Market (Calle de Carranza, 3) is great for ecologically produced items. It has a large sin gluten section with everything from gluten-free pastas to gluten free versions of Madrid’s famous pastries like rosquillas (anis-flavored doughnuts).

Fast Food

While we definitely recommend directing your taste buds to the awesome options above, if you’re really craving some fast food, these chain restaurants in Madrid also have gluten free options and can be found all over the city:

  • Telepizza (Domino’s-style pizza)
  • Rodilla (sandwiches)
  • VIPS (array of both Spanish and diner-style dishes)

Want an all-encompassing gluten free experience? Our food tours are completely adaptable for gluten free guests! So you can join in all the foodie fun, without the worry of not having appropriate alternatives to suit your dietary needs! We hope to see you in Madrid soon!

14 Comment

  1. Jennifer says
    March 18, 2014 at 10:50 am

    This is such a great list! I don’t have celiac disease, but a few of my friends in Madrid do. I had no idea that one of my favorite tapas bars, Taberna La Concha, had an entire menu for GF tapas.

    Reply
  2. Erin Smith says
    March 19, 2014 at 3:38 pm

    This is a great post! Spain is very high on my wishlist. I cannot wait to share this with my Gluten-Free Globetrotter readers.

    Reply
  3. Iris says
    January 26, 2015 at 9:10 pm

    This is a great site! Really helpful when in Madrid. Thanks! Note though that Pizza Sapori does not exist near Chueca metro. It’s about 15 kilometres from Gran Via to the restaurant.

    Reply
  4. Katie says
    March 12, 2015 at 12:00 pm

    Thanks for the wonderful list!! I am going to Madrid this weekend and haven’t been since my celiac diagnosis. I used your list to make myself a bunch of map pages like I do for all cities I visit now. Very happy to have this to read!

    Reply
    1. Lauren Aloise says
      March 13, 2015 at 2:42 pm

      Hope it helps and definitely let us know if you find anywhere new!

      Reply
  5. lena says
    May 15, 2015 at 11:47 am

    There are also the
    Mc Donalds with gluten free things,
    Fosters Hollywood
    And Tommy mels

    They also have gluten free food!
    My best friend here cant eat gluten so we always go to one of those 😀 today we’ll go to one of those bakeries!!

    Reply
    1. Lauren Aloise says
      May 17, 2015 at 6:01 pm

      That’s true Lena– though honestly not our favorite stops!

      Reply
  6. July 1, 2015 at 11:36 pm

    Hi Lauren!

    I’m so happy for these recommendations, my parents have been in town and I’ve recently been diagnosed with celiac’s disease so I know a lot of great restaurants, but not necessarily ones that offer GF options. It’s been hard to find a place to take my parents that offers an authentic Spanish tapas experience, but we tried “Taberna La Concha” tonight and loved it! I’d also recommend Emma y Julia (http://emmayjulia.com/) which is an Italian restaurant also on Cava Baja that offers gluten free pizza, pasta and homemade desserts. Thanks again!

    Reply
    1. Lauren Aloise says
      July 6, 2015 at 2:51 pm

      Thanks for the comment Melissa and definitely let us know if you find any more gems! Taberna la Concha is great– we stop there on our Tapas, Taverns and History Tour sometimes!

      Reply
  7. L.Clarke says
    December 20, 2015 at 5:42 pm

    I’m headed over to Madrid in January for a few days, thank you for this info. I’m really looking forward to trying some of these places.

    Reply
  8. Erik says
    January 16, 2016 at 1:14 pm

    Hi All!

    Great site and great to learn more about where to go in Spain!

    I’m currently studying in Spain and a friend of mine has a gluten allergy. It got us thinking if it would be possible to expand the offer of gluten free products and we’re now doing some research on it. If you want to share your experience and help us out with your points of view, please let me know, it would greatly help us – and hopefully all gluten intolerant (and health conscious) folks out here!

    Thanks!

    Reply
  9. Wendy says
    April 10, 2016 at 5:41 pm

    Brilliant list thankyou, visiting Madrid this summer with my 8 year old son who is celiac. This list will be my bible

    Reply
  10. Jose says
    September 25, 2016 at 3:53 pm

    Hello everyone!
    There is a new place called KINT in Mercado Vallehermoso (Calle de Vallehermoso, 36). Its a nice place that offers regular menu and daily menus and has specialvariations of spanish tapas. They also have several options of gluten free beers and amazing gluten free products. The market is a nice place that has been changing and a lot of small places with different kind of food has opened. Is a great place to visit with friends or relatives who arent celiacs since there you can find options for everyone.
    Hope you enjoy!

    Reply
  11. Brooke says
    October 1, 2016 at 5:55 pm

    Hi just wanted to note that Mercadona actually has one of the poorest selection of gluten-free products (second only to Dia which has literally no breads, crackers or cookies or cereals like other markets) in Madrid these days. They have off-brand stuff (which is like all of Mercadona since they have some mafia style of business where they buy from only their own companies and this is what all Spanish people tell you not foreigners :))) which isn’t great quality. No Schar. Not much variety. their own brand is tasteless and dry. My recommendation for the absolute best GF product selection these days would be El Corte Inglese supermercados. They have a lot of different brands, lots of flours and products to cook with and depending on the size you can find almost anything. I haven’t seen a bigger GF section anywhere in Madrid.

    Reply

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