Hilary’s Eat Well Veggie Burgers

Hilary’s is the creator of convenient and culinary foods that are made from real ingredients and are free from common allergens. Hilary’s is a B Corporation certified food manufacturing company dedicated to nourishing our bodies and the environment. They only use thoughtfully researched, organic and non-GMO ingredients. The products we offer are easy to prepare at home, and undeniably delicious. It’s eating well made easy.

Screen Shot 2018-01-08 at 9.07.41 PM

I am sure you have tried – or at least heard of – Hilary’s gluten free products at some point (including my post a few months ago about their Millet Medleys.) Today I want to talk to you about Hilary’s Veggie Burgers. I LOVE these burgers and my husband and I eat them for dinner at least twice per month. Veggie Burgers are available in a variety of styles:

  • World’s Best Veggie Burger (original)
  • Adzuki Bean Burger
  • Hemp & Greens Burger 
  • Root Veggie Burger 
  • Black Rice Veggie Burger
  • Spicy Thai Veggie Burger 
  • Curry Veggie Burger
  • Kimchi Veggie Burger 


I’ve tried a number of Hilary’s burgers and I have to say my favorites include the original, Adzuki burger and Root Veggie Burger. Veggie burgers are perfect for those nights that you need protein but don’t want meat. They are also super easy and quick to make, and make for the perfect busy weeknight meal. 

Every product meets the following standards:

  • Convenient. foods for people who care about what they eat while living their busy lives.
  • Clean. certified organic ingredients are real food, minimally processed and as close to their natural state as possible.
  • Free-from. all products are all gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free, corn-free and nut-free.
  • Sustainable. Hilary’s considers long-term sustainability in their business practices. They care about the health of customers, employees and ecosystem.
  • Yummy. If it doesn’t taste good, why even bother? 

Have you tried Hilary’s Veggie Burgers? What is your favorite kind? 

Disclaimer: I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I was not paid to write this review.


Gluten Free Options at Delicatessen // NoLita

On Wednesday night i joined a group of gluten free food bloggers to check out the gluten free options at Delicatessen. Michael Ferraro is the Executive Chef and Partner at Delicatessen, cooking up a menu that “appeals to the masses” and is best described as international comfort food. We met Chef Michael who told us that over 50% of his menu is naturally gluten free or can be made gluten free!

The menu offers something for everything; from salads and brussel sprouts, to burgers, fish and truffle fries(oh my!), there is literally something for all taste buds. Below are some highlights from our meal:

Chicken Thigh Tacos with puebla style mole, tomatillo & avocado salsa and queso fresco



Crispy Brussels Sprouts & Fingerling Potatoes with rosemary and garlic



Truffle-parmigiano Fries



Fresh Kale Salad with shitake mushrooms, golden raisins, cashews, sprouts and silken tofu mirin vinaigrette



Slow Cooked Chicken & Turkey Chili with avocado and aged cheddar 



Pan Roasted Salmon with butternut squash puree, Brussels sprout leaves and smoked bacon with a sage brown butter sauce



Classic Burger with caramelized onions on a crispy sushi rice “bun”



Pan Roasted Chicken with haricot verts, mashed fingerlings and chicken jus



Grilled Pork Chop with a crispy polenta cake, braised endive and a maple and grain mustard glaze



Grilled Tuna Steak with sticky rice, Chinese long beans and coconut red curry sauce

FullSizeRender (1)


Disclaimer: I received this meal free of charge. I was not paid for my review and all opinions are my own.

Screen Shot 2016-03-17 at 1.53.41 PM


Gluten Free Friday Finds

After attending the Summer Fancy Food Show a few weeks ago I have tried so many new and delicious gluten free products. You might recall my posts at the beginning of the month where I shared with you some of the delicious products I sampled. Today I want to highlight a few more awesome Gluten Free Finds I think you all will love!


Umpqua Oats


Umpqua Oats was launched in 2008 by two moms craving a delicious and satisfying alternative to the typical instant oatmeal packets. Umpqua Oats super premium oatmeal is a satisfying, on-the-go breakfast choice for anyone who craves a healthy, delicious and quick meal. 


Umpqua Oats are available in 7 creative flavors. Each one comes in a convenient container that can be used as a bowl. It’s so easy to make. Simply add hot water, cover with lid, wait 3 minutes, stir and enjoy. How simple is that? It’s perfect if you need a quick breakfast as you are running out the door in the morning. 


What makes Umpqua Oats super premium? Well to start, the oats are the highest quality grade A, and only all natural nuts and fruits are used. There are no fillers, preservatives or artificial flavors. The custom milled, unbleached whole rolled oats give it a rich nutty flavor and a lightly chewier texture that is never mushy. The oats consistently test within the acceptable tolerance level for gluten free certification; however, they cannot certify the product as “gluten-free” because it is made in a plant where wheat products are produced. What does this mean? It means that the products could contain trace levels of wheat. 

Oats have a ton of health benefits: Lower cholesterol, boost the immune system, Special antioxidants for heart protection, stabilize blood sugar, and lower risk of diabetes to name a few. They are also packed with fiber, protein and iron. My only issue is the amount of sugar per serving. I find some of the flavors a little too sweet and wish there was just a little less sugar. 

Jackpot flavor nutritional info
Jackpot flavor nutritional info

GH Creator Popcorn


G.H. Cretors—best known for their Chicago Mix, the diabolically addicting combination of caramel corn and cheese corn in the same bag—just introduced a new certified organic line of popcorn, which includes Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Simply Salted varieties. The Extra Virgin Olive Oil flavor is the first ever popcorn to be wet-popped in EVOO, and the Simply Salted is seasoned with just the right amount of sea salt for a clean, classic treat. The new organic line uses only organic non-GMO popcorn, 100% organic oils, and pure sea salt, which means with each kernel (or handful) you put in your mouth, you’ll only taste wholesome goodness! And just like all G.H. Cretors products, the organic varieties are made completely free of artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives and are non-GMO and certified gluten-free. 

G.H. Cretors’ signature Chicago Mix combines caramel corn and cheese corn in the same bag, offering addictive, simultaneous hits of sweet, salty, crunchy and cheesy. The caramel corn is made the old fashioned way: by hand, in copper kettles. Cane sugar, brown rice syrup (a non-GMO alternative to corn syrup with a lower glycemic impact) and real butter is heated over a flame and then stirred slowly by hand to develop its rich complex flavor and crunch. 

Qrunch Gluten Free Quinoa Burgersfeature-box-products-new

Jeremy and I recently tried QRUNCH Original Burgers and we actually enjoyed them a lot! QRUNCH burgers are completely different from any other veggie burger I’ve tried. Made with a combination of quinoa, millet, organic vegetables and coconut oil, it is 100% gluten free, soy free, corn free, dairy free, egg free, nut free, MSG free, and vegan. They make it so easy for those living with multiple food allergies to have a great tasting and nutrient dense burger.

QRUNCH burgers come in 4 flavors: Original, Spicy Italian, Green Chile, Curry with Lentils, and Saucy Buffalo. The Original is mild and nutty tasting. It has the subtle, nutty taste of quinoa (hence the Q in QRUNCH), the crunchiness of millet, and the goodness of organic vegetables. Because of its subtle flavor, pairs well with virtually anything you’d like on it. Try it with your favorite burger toppings, or place it on top of a salad.  It’s even great for breakfast with an egg on top, and it goes great with nut butters, jellies, honey, and yes, ketchup!


Jeremy prefered the texture of this burger over other veggie burgers I’ve bought in the past. Our only issue is that it fell apart really easily. This is not a big deal, as we simply just ate the burgers with a fork. 

Since QRUNCH Burgers are already cooked, they are super easy to prepare! Keep them frozen until you’re ready to eat.

  • Toaster: Toast on high for one or two cycles until heated through. 
  • Toaster Oven or Oven: Bake at 400°F on a cookie sheet for 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Skillet or Grill: Cook on medium-high heat, 3 to 4 minutes per side.
  • Microwave: not recommend — you’ll lose that distinctive crunch. If you must, nuke on high for 1 to 2 minutes.

QRUNCH Burgers are sold in nearly 3,000 grocery stores across the country.

Modern Table Meals


Modern Table Meals is a line of healthy, yummy, and easy to make pasta meal kits! Everything you need is in the bag: bean-based pastas, dried veggies, sauce + seasoning to customize the flavor to your tastes. For many, myself included, cooking dinner on busy weeknights can be a challenge some nights. While it is tough, I don’t want to sacrifice nutrition and quality just to be able to have the convenience of making something from a box, a frozen pizza, or worse, picking up something greasy and unhealthy at a fast food restaurant. This is where Modern Table meals come in. These meals are SO fast and easy to prepare and are full of quality, gluten-free ingredients that make you feel like you are getting a meal made from scratch. The best part? They don’t have a bunch of chemical ridden preservatives and “fake” ingredient. I love that the ingredients are things I know and that the ingredient list is minimal. I also love that the pasta is something different then just the traditional brown rice or corn gluten-free pastas you often find on the market. These lentil and bean pastas are nutrient dense, full of flavor and an excellent addition of fiber in your diet. They are also a great addition of plant based protein with 12-20 grams of protein and 5-7 grams of fiber per serving, and are full of vitamins your body needs.


The 3 gluten free varieties of Modern Table Meals are:

  • Italian Red Lentil Penne with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce and Parmesan Herb Seasoning 
  • Mediterranean Green Lentil Rotini with Garlic Herb Sauce and Mediterranean Citrus Seasoning
  • Southwest Red Lentil Rotini with Roasted Tomato Sauce and Chili Lime Seasoning 


All 3 flavors are vegetarian and the Southwest is vegan. All varieties contain a healthy and protein-rich bean noodle, making it a complete meal even without adding a meat or protein. They contain no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. 

It’s so easy to make! Just rip open the bag, follow the simple instructions for a one-pot meal that is ready in less than 15 minutes. You can add your own twist to each of the 3 yummy Modern Table Meals or enjoy them as they are. 

BOIL pasta and vegetables for 8-9 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drain.



 MIX sauce in a small bowl with 2/3 cup water and 2 tablespoons oil.

 TOSS pasta and vegetables with sauce; let stand for 2 minutes.

 SPRINKLE with seasoning packet as desired–it’s a lot of flavor! Voila! Dinner is served!

 Check out the store locator to find a retailer near you. No stores near you? No fear. They’re online too!

Among Friends

Among Friends baking mixes are made with whole grains and premium better-for-you ingredients, with no starches, fillers or gums. The brand recently converted its entire line of nine mixes to gluten-free, and introduced a new cookie: Darcy’s Delish Old-Fashioned Chocolate Chip Cookie, a fresh take on the American classic with a crispy edge, soft interior and premium Callebaut chocolate chips. Chocolate chip cookies are my favorite and this one is delicious with a great texture and just the right amount of chips. 
Among Friends is celebrating new distribution in Target, Kroger and Publix stores this summer. The brand will be in more than 5,500 stores nationwide by year’s end, which is incredible growth for a company that’s only been on the national scene for a few years. 

The Van Cleve Seafood Company

Bacon-wrapped scallops

The Van Cleve Seafood Co., founded and headquartered in Spotsylvania County, PA, now have its gourmet seafood products in 44 Whole Foods stores on the East Coast. The all-female, family-run business started in 2000 with one seafood shack on Courthouse Road. The Van Cleves have been featured on QVC for their crab pie and will appear again on the channel soon with new products: bacon-wrapped scallops and shrimp, both which are gluten free! 

The Van Cleve Seafood Company uses only high quality, sustainable ingredients, and this is the reason Whole Foods Market is putting them into their stores. You can also find The Van Cleve Seafood Company’s products in stores in NY and CT (and other mid-Atlantic states). You can also order the bacon-wrapped scallops and shrimp online have them shipped to directly via Fed Ex. 

I don’t normally eat bacon, but the bacon-wrapped scallops and shrimp tasted very fresh and are perfect for serving at parties or small gatherings. 

Nocciolata from Rigoni di Asiago

Made with organic ingredients completely free of GMO’s, preservatives, colors, additives, or artificial sweeteners, Rigoni di Asiago’s Nocciolata combines hazelnuts, cocoa and cocoa butter, natural vanilla extract, raw sugar, and skimmed milk for a chocolate-hazelnut spread with undeniably superior flavor and smooth, creamy texture. Unlike other brands, which use palm oil (high in saturated fat and whose cultivation devastates the environment), Nocciolata is made with environmentally-responsible cold-pressed sunflower oil. It also contains far less sugar than other brands. 


I do not like Nutella so I didn’t think I was going to like this chocolate-hazelnut spread either. But boy was I wrong! Nocciolata tastes real. The quality of ingredients really do make a difference. There is no chemical or artificial taste here. I am now a fan of hazelnut-chocolate spread and have been eating it straight from the jar! 

Plentils from Enjoy Life Foods

I am a big fan of the Enjoy Life Foods brand for many reasons!  They work very hard to produce high quality, tasty food that is free of the top 8 allergens, plus a few more!  I have written other reviews about products from this company including their Chewy Bars, Chocolate Bars, Decadance Bars, and Baking Chocolates.   


Recently, Enjoy Life was kind enough to provide with me four bags of their plentils . What’s a Plentil you ask? Chips with benefits. From ancient times to the present, the lentil has been one of the best sources of plant-based protein and is a staple in diets throughout the world. Enjoy Life has captured the essence of this vital legume’s all-natural goodness and turned it into a unique, protein-packed, crunchy experience. Every Plentils chip bursts with flavor and is a truly tasty “better-for-you” treat.

Plentils are available in 4 flavors: Light Sea Salt, Dill & Sour Cream, Margherita Pizza, and Garlic & Parmesan.


The Light Sea Salt are my favorite. They have a nice crunch and subtle flavor. The Margherita Pizza chips taste like PIZZA! They are also amazing and we ate the entire bag! 


Plentils are made with NO artificial ingredients and have zero sugar per serving, making them much healthier than most potato chips on the market and a great for school lunches or after school snack! 

Enjoy Life Foods products are available at retail locations nationwide. Click here to find a location near you. You can also purchase products online

Skillet’s Line of Pumpkin Ketchups

Skillet’s line of Pumpkin Ketchups include two gluten free flavors: Brown Sugar and Apple Vinegar, and Chipotle. They are sold in 10.5 ounce containers and can be found online as well as at Whole Foods, Metropolitan Market, Sur La Table and other specialty stores throughout the country.

“Skillet began as great local food served out of our 1971 Airstream, and right away we found success with our Bacon Jam Burger; then we had to make the perfect ketchupfor our fries!” states Skillet President Jon Severson. “The Pumpkin Ketchups are the perfect condiment and can be used as dipping sauces, marinades or added to any dish to make the at-home chef look like a pro.

2014_Autumn v1 Pumpkin Ketchup 10oz_web

Skillet Pumpkin Ketchup is a pumpkin based condiment made with fresh pumpkin and spices and are filled with rich vitamins and minerals.  Each flavor has only 15 calories per 1 ounce serving and have a two-year shelf life. The Brown Sugar & Apple Vinegar and Chipotle flavors are also vegetarian and vegan.  These ketchups work great as a sauce for pasta, spread for sandwiches or used simply as ketchup. For recipes inspired by Skillet chef, Nick Novello, visit www.skilletstreefood.com.

Cucina Aurora Roasted Garlic Infused Olive Oil

Earlier this month I blogged about  Cucina Aurora’s Infused Sun-Dried Tomato and Basil Oil and  Italian rosemary and oregano infused olive oil, both of which have incredible flavor and can take your cooking up a notch. 

Cucina Aurora’s Roasted Garlic Infused Oil is a potent oil, richly infused with the mellow flavor of roasted garlic. Made with granulated roasted garlic for the smoothest flavor possible, combined with just a hint of red pepper to bring out the garlic’s intensity. This powerful oil is perfect for bruschette, salads or just dipping with bread. Use in place of plain olive oil to sauté, fry, or grill fish, meat and veggies or simply toss and enjoy with pasta or rice.

Cucina Aurora infused olive oils are made with all natural ingredients. They are GMO-free, gluten free and vegan. Cucina Aurora does not, never has and never will use artificial ingredients, or preservatives. Please note, although Cucina Aurora does not at this time process any gluten or wheat products, they are not a dedicated or certified gluten free facility.

Disclaimer: I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free.  Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I was not paid to write this review. 

photo 1

Promenade Bar & Grill now offers Gluten Free Burgers // & Join Us April 29th for a Gluten Free Burger Event

photo 2

Sports bars are one of the hardest places to find gluten free options. Has this ever happened to you?  You meet your friends at a sports bar, ready to cheer on your favorite team, and there’s nothing you can eat. Well, you can usually find a bed of iceberg lettuce and a glass of water, but what’s the fun in that? You’re hungry too and you wish you could eat what everyone else was eating…

photo 3

Well thanks to Promenade Bar and Grill, now you can! Promenade is proud to introduce Gluten Free Burgers to their menu! All three burgers – beef, turkey, and veggie – are gluten free and can be served on an Udi’s gluten free bun. Not only are the burgers gluten free, but the fries that are served with it are also safe.

photo 1

With two dedicated gluten free fries, which are only used to make French fries, sweet potato fries and corn chips, you can enjoy your meal worry-free.

photo 2

Let’s talk about the Veggie Burger, which is actually a Vegan Burger. Made from a mix of fresh, all natural kale, sweet potato, spinach, water chestnut, roasted corn, broccoli, brown rice and garlic, this veggie burger is unlike any veggies burger I’ve ever had.

photo 3

The big chunks of vegetables tasted garden-fresh. With very little brown rice, the burger fell apart a little bit, but I did not care. It was too good to care. The only solution would be to add more fillers – rice, quinoa, GF breadcrumbs, etc. – and this would take away from the flavor of the burger. I prefer Promenade’s burger that’s a little messy, but full of flavor and chunks of healthy, fresh vegetables.

photo 4

The “All American Burger” is made with four cuts of beef; brisket, short rib, prime chunk and hanger steak. Yes, you read that right.

All of the burgers are prepared in a manner to avoid cross contaminate with any gluten products.

All burgers are served with your choice of French fries or sweet potato fries. Obviously, I ordered the sweet potato fries. It’s not everyday you find 100% gluten free safe sweet potato fries. The fries had a nice cinnamon coating and were also delicious.

Tito’s gluten free vodka is on hand for all vodka drinks (check out the bottomless bloody Mary weekend brunch!), Redbridge Beer, and Stella Cidre.

Promenade is a great spot to catch your favorite game on one of their many 60” tv screens. They also have individual listening boxes for your table if the game you want to watch isn’t on tv. Better yet, the restaurant is equipped with iphone charging “stations” all throughout the restaurant.

photo 2

On Wednesday, April 29, 2015 join us for a Gluten Free Burger Meal! This is a gluten free meet up event with a chance to find a great place to meet other gluten free New Yorkers while enjoying a delicious gluten free meal along with gluten free cider and a great dessert. The cost is $20 per person, and you will get one choice of veggie, turkey or beef burger with your choice of sweet potato or regular french fries as well as your choice of corona beer or Stella cidre.  A delish gluten free brownie dessert is also included.   Tip not included. Tickets.

So make a night of it come down and mingle with other gluten free New Yorkers and enjoy some great food!

Promenade Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon

Disclaimer: I received this meal free of charge. I was not paid to write this review. All my thoughts and opinions are my own.


Jerry Remy’s introduces New Athlete Menu {Paleo, Gluten Free, Vegetarian & Vegan}

Jerry Remy’s Sports Bar and Grill, located on Boylston Street in the heart of Fenway, has just launched a new “Athlete Menu” which includes items suitable for anyone on the Paleo diet, vegan or gluten free. The new menu will add to their vegetarian and gluten-free fare with a focus on those who work hard and play harder.

“You play hard and you want to eat healthy, which isn’t that hard. Jerry Remy’s has created choices to suit your lifestyle and keep lookin’ good. But you don’t have to be an athlete to try the new menu. It’s for anyone that loves fresh, tasty food and cares about you fuel your body.”

The new menu was created for Boston customers who are fit and enjoy an active lifestyle, who eat healthy and want to eat healthy even at sports bars. It’s exciting that a restaurant has created a menu specially geared towards the active and athletic, and what’s even better is that everything is (or can be done) gluten free!

The menu features items you wouldn’t think a sports bar like Jerry Remy’s would ever offer, such as a quinoa taboulleh wrap, salads, and black bean burgers. To learn more about the gluten free options available at Jerry Remy’s, click here to read about my gluten free dining experience in December.

The Athlete Menu

Last week I had the chance to sit down with owner John Mascia and try some of the items of the new menu.

Kale & Crisp Apple Salad: Massaged kale, carrots, jicama, toasted almonds, cucumbers, avocado, celery, green onions, red peppers tossed with lemon vinaigrette. The salad was light and fresh, topped with fresh avocado and apple slices.


Honey Roasted Pork Belly Tacos: Seared crisp pork belly over pico de gallo, fresh avocado, grilled pineapple, and sprigs of cilantro served in a lemon wrap with lime wedges served in a lettuce wrap.


The pork belly was tender and flavorful. With a layer of meat, a nice layer of fat, another nice layer of meat, another nice layer of fat, and a thin crispy layer on top that crackled when I bit into it; it was just delicious. We were impressed with the flavors and freshness of everything in this dish: from the meat to the cilantro to the pineapple.  The lettuce wraps were flimsy and my ‘’taco’’ broke apart so I had to eat it with a fork in knife, but that did not take anything away from the dish.


Black Bean Burger: Spicy chipotle & blackberry glazed vegetable patty, with green leaf lettuce, tomato, avocado, mayonnaise, mustard corn relish & smoked cheddar cheese served on a gluten free potato bun.


The burger was moist and well seasoned.  The mustard corn relish was spicy and gave the burger a nice kick. The cranberry aioli was sweet and added a different zing to the burger and was a nice balance to the spicy relish.

IMG_7233Flat Iron Grass-Fed Steak: Churrasco marinated & grilled, served over a healthy bed of grilled vegetables & sauced with chimichurri. The beef is pasture-raised locally in Brimfield, MA by River Rock Farm. It’s dry-aged 28 days, all natural, hormone free and antibiotic free.


 This was my favorite dish of the night. The steak was cooked to perfection and the chimichurri was incredibly fresh with a slightly overpowering mint flavor, which I actually really enjoyed.

No dinner is complete without a cocktail, or should I say “Paleotail”?

Paleo Bellini and Stairclimber Margarita

Paleo Bellini: All natural peach puree topped with Prosecco.  I could have drunken these all night, it was that good. So refreshing.

Stairclimber Margarita: Tequila, fresh squeezed limejuice, and club soda— nothing more. The margarita was not my favorite: a bit disappointing for a margarita lover. It was both too watery and too strong.

Although the chili is not on the Athlete’s menu, I did learn that they use Redbridge gluten free beer to make it. And if you want a Caesar salad, with croutons, no problem! The croutons are made with gluten free potato bread. Gluten Free bread and wraps are also available for the sandwiches, and the grill is 100% gluten free.

The roof deck, that overlooks Fenway Park, just got a brand new retractable roof that will make it the perfect place to be— other than actually being at Fenway Park— on game days, rain or shine.


Jerry Remy’s is not your average sports bar. Not only do they have a gluten free, paelo, vegetarian and vegan menu, the food is not what you would expect to find at a sports bar, it far exceeds any expectations we had.

Disclaimer: I received this meal free of charge, with the exception of gratuity, which we happily paid for the great service. I was not paid for my review and all opinions are my own.

Jerry Remy's on Urbanspoon

Screen Shot 2014-04-03 at 3.05.33 PM

Restaurant Review: Gluten Free Menu at Back Deck Boston

Located on the corner of Washington and West Streets in Downtown Crossing, Back Deck offers a casual atmosphere reminiscent of being in someone’s backyard. The restaurant is designed to evoke the feeling of relaxing in on a friend’s back deck, enjoying a summertime cookout. The sliding 16-foot windows are opened during the warmer months, and when open make you truly feel like you are dining out side.

Screen Shot 2014-04-03 at 3.05.33 PM

Most of the menu items are grilled over hardwood charcoal, just like you would if you were grilling on your back deck. The grill has a dedicated section for gluten free items.

Back has offers a gluten free brunch, lunch and dinner menu, and I recently had the opportunity to check out the gluten free dinner options with my sister Katie, Katie’s Boston Cuisine.

For appetizers we started with the Grilled Hot Wings, served Daddy-O’s Style, with Gorgonzola dressing and celery sticks ($8). The wings were perfectly juicy with a nice grill flavor. There was a nice kick but not too spicy, thank god.


We also shared the Grilled Shrimp Skewer served with a red pepper vinaigrette over baby spinach ($12).  The shrimp were fresh and tasty. This small plate could easily be a light lunch.


The first time I ate at the Back Deck I had the Mexicali Burger, topped with pepper jack, sliced avocado, green chili salsa, and chipotle mayo ($15). The 8 oz. burger did not have a lot of flavor itself, but with everything that was added onto it, it was delicious. The gluten free brioche bun from Curtis Street Bakery, available for an extra $1, is the best gluten free bun I’ve ever tasted. Ever. It was fluffy and moist, not grainy at all, and had a wonderful buttery and real bread flavor.


The French fries are gluten free; they are the only item that gets cooked in the fry. I would come back for this reason alone.

This time around we shared three entrees.


The Mixed Grill comes with a beef kabob, lamb skewer, Andouille sausage, grilled Portobello mushroom and tomato, with rosemary fingerling potatoes and a homemade tomato caper chutney, their version of ketchup ($19).  The beef was tender, juicy and flavorful. The grilled tomatoes were also juicy. The sausage, which was more like kielbasa if you ask me, was also delicious. The lamb meatballs had lots of flavor and this dish was by far my favorite of the night.


The Pernil Cubano Tacos are served in corn tortillas with grilled then roasted pulled pork, vinegary cabbage slaw, spicy tomato salsa, avocado cream, black beans and rice ($16). The flavor of the meat was great but it was too dry. I honestly didn’t notice the salsa, not sure if it was even on there, and I wish there had been more avocado cream. The black beans had a smoky and sweet element to them, and were very delicious.


The Grilled Lemon-Pepper Salmon was served with a horseradish sauce over basmati rice and grilled asparagus ($23). The salmon was flavorful and cooked to perfection. I loved the chargrill taste and the sauce was delicious. The asparagus were well seasoned but the rice was a little bland.

We were too full for dessert, but gluten free dessert options include:

  • Snicker Sundae: honey-vanilla ice cream, chocolate & caramel sauces, toasted peanuts & whipped cream.
  • Flourless Chocolate Brownie Sundae: walnut toffee sauce & whipped cream
  • Creamy Risotto Rice Pudding: golden raisins and toasted almonds (all $6)
  • Bowl of Toscanini’s Ice Cream: honey-vanilla, chocolate chocolate chip or blackberry/blueberry sorbet ($5)

Gluten Free Bard’s Beer and Downeast Cider are available, as well as Tito’s gluten free vodka.

Our server was friendly, attentive, and certainly knowledgeable about the menu. She had a great attitude and made our night that much better. The portion sizes are big, great for sharing, and the prices are very reasonable. I would definitely come back here again.

View Larger Map

Back Deck on Urbanspoon

Disclaimer: A portion of this dinner was complementary, but all my thoughts and opinions are my own. 


Restaurant Review: Cask ‘n Flagon Ups Culinary Game with New Menu and Gluten Free Options

Cask ‘n Flagon Ups Culinary Game
Executive Chef Donely Liburd dishes out a revamped menu at Fenway landmark restaurant.image001-11

Executive Chef Donley Liburd is stepping up the culinary game at Fenway landmark, Cask ‘n Flagon, by debuting a revamped menu. Chef Liburd’s new menu items exhibit his culinary flair and BBQ expertise and will complement signature Cask favorites – such as wings, burgers, sandwiches and pizzas. What’s more? Cask ‘n Flagon boasts a 100% nut-free kitchen and most menu items are available gluten-free.IMG_6222

I had the chance to sit down with Chef Liburd and talk with him about his new menu, the gluten free options, the gluten free procedures in place at Cask ‘n Flagon, and sample some of the delicious gluten free options.

For starters, Chef Liburd will dish out appetizers such as: Black Bean Hummus (pico de gallo, guacamole, gluten free pita chips – $10) and, P.E.I. Mussels (pan roasted with Andouille sausage, fresh corn, diced onion and tomato finished with a fresh herb-butter sauce – $12.25). There are also new salads including the Roasted Beet Salad (red & golden beets, Vermont goat cheese, red wine vinaigrette, mixed greens – $10). IMG_6204From the grill, Chef Liburd will serve up newcomers like: Filet Mignon (7oz filet served on an herb cheese crostini, drizzled with red wine demi sauce and topped with herb butter and fried onion strings, served with potato croquettes and vegetable of the day – $24); Braised Short Rib (15oz short rib slow cooked for four hours served with mashed potatoes and beer battered onion rings – $24); Grilled Porterhouse Pork Chop (12oz grilled porterhouse pork chop topped with an apple and bacon chutney glaze served with sweet potato au gratin – $18.50); and, Chicken Jambalaya (Andouille sausage, blackened chicken, fresh corn, peppers and rice in a spicy tomato stew with fresh herbs – $13.75). All are gluten free.

For those looking to get their BBQ on, Cask ‘n Flagon offers the “Big D’s BBQ” menu, which is 100% gluten free. Options include: BBQ Beef Brisket (slow-smoked for eight hours – $15.75) and Baby Back Ribs (full rack of tender, falling-off the bone BBQ pork ribs – $19).

Chef Liburd also is giving diners a taste of Italy right in Fenway with his fresh pasta lineup. Also available with gluten-free penne, new pasta selections are: Chicken Piccata (pan seared chicken breast with a white wine, lemon, caper butter sauce served over gluten free penne – $15.50); Spicy Shrimp & Sausage (sautéed shrimp and Andouille sausage tossed in a spicy cream sauce served over cheese grits – $16.50); and an old favorite Pasta Primavera (roasted vegetable hash with squash, zucchini, red pepper, green pepper, crimini mushroom, garlic and red onion, roasted and finished with fresh herbs and crushed red pepper, tossed with penne pasta – $14). IMG_6215

Gluten free pizza and burgers are also available on Udi’s pizza crust and buns.IMG_6212

The Fenway Burger (Half pound Certified Angus Beef burger topped with Applewood smoked bacon and Vermont cheddar cheese – $11.75) was super flavorful and delicious – and I don’t usually like burgers! IMG_6217

Burgers are available with your choice of a side; the sweet potato fries and French fries can be roasted or pan fried, rather than fried in oil, to avoid cross contamination.  The sweet potato fries are delicious, as are the homemade pickles that were served with my burger.IMG_6214

Cask ‘n Flagon is a scratch kitchen. All sauces and marinades are made in house, and each dish is made to order. This is the primary reason Chef Liburd does not offer a specific “Gluten Free Menu.” He didn’t want to limit customers with gluten allergies to only a few options. Since all items are made to order, anything that isn’t already gluten fee can be modified and customized to meet your dietary needs. (With a few exceptions including the onion rings, vegetable burger, crab cakes, Fish and Chips, Asian Stir Fry and a few other appetizers).

Although Chef Liburd knows every ingredient that goes into every single dish, he makes sure he and his kitchen staff cross reference all products every time, even the ketchup. “You can never be too sure,” he says.

Very few items cooked on the grill contain gluten, but the chefs clean it before each gluten free meal is cooked. The kitchen staff and floor staff are all trained. Chef Liburd has spent a lot of time on training and server education. Our waitress Holly, was incredibly knowledgeable about the menu and the gluten free options, I was very impressed.

Chef Liburd didn’t want to Cask ‘N Flagon to only be known for a few dishes; he wanted everything to be good. And he certainly has upped the food game. We were blown away with the quality of the food; everything was fresh and flavorful, and the portions were large.

New Planet beer is available for gluten free beer lovers. But I recommend trying the house Cask Sangria (Cruzan Citrus Rum, Cruzan Raspberry Rum, Peach Schnapps, fresh lemon juice with house made simple syrup and Cabernet – $7) or Harvest Sangria (Apple Jack, Domain De Canton – a French ginger liquor – Sauvignon Blanc, juices, and cinnamon cordial – $8). Both were light and refreshing, not too sweet, and the perfect for summer or fall, respectively. IMG_6201

And make sure you save room for dessert! Gluten Free dessert options include the Flourless Chocolate Torte and the Butterscotch Crème Brulee, and neither will leave you disappointed. IMG_6220 IMG_6209

Disclaimer: I received this meal free of charge, with the exception of gratuity, which we happily paid for the great service. I was not paid for my review and all opinions are my own.

View Larger Map

Cask 'n Flagon on Urbanspoon

Screen shot 2014-01-09 at 10.17.42 AM

Restaurant Review Gluten Free Options at Jerry Remy’s Sports Bar in Fenway

Sports bars are one of the hardest places to find gluten free options. Has this ever happened to you?  You meet your friends at a sports bar, ready to cheer on your favorite team, and there’s nothing you can eat. Well, you can usually find a bed of iceberg lettuce and a glass of water, but what’s the fun in that? You’re hungry too and you wish you could eat what everyone else was eating…Screen shot 2014-01-09 at 10.17.42 AM

Well imagine my excitement when I learned that Jerry Remy’s Sports Bar & Grill recently unveiled a gluten free menu (in addition to a vegetarian and vegan menu). The menu isn’t just salad and bun-less sandwiches. The gluten free menu includes appetizers, sandwiches, burgers (with buns!), pastas, and much more.
Update (April 10, 2014): Jerry Remy’s replaced the Gluten Free Menu with an Athlete Menu which still features a number of gluten free options. In addition, many of the items on the menu are or can be done gluten free.

While I was at Jerry Remy’s I had the chance to speak with the manager Noah about their gluten free server education. I also spoke with the chef in great detail about the menu and how they safeguard their kitchen for gluten free diners. The chef informed me that they use separate cutting boards, knives, and gloves for any allergen that crosses their kitchen.

Most menu items that are not already gluten free can be modified and prepared gluten free. If anything needs to be removed from the dish in order to make it gluten free, (i.e. croutons on salads), they will happily do it for you.

All of the sandwiches and burgers on the vegan/vegetarian menu and on the regular menu are available on an Udi’s gluten free roll or bread. All burgers are gluten free; they do not use any fillers (think bread crumbs) in making the patties. Since we all know what Udi’s bread tastes like, I decided not get a burger or a sandwich. I wanted to try some of the other items on the menu.

The grill is 100% gluten free. This came as a shock to me. Every piece of meat, chicken, fish, etc. that is put on the grill is gluten free. How is that possible you ask? The marinades used for the steak tips, BBQ ribs, and short ribs are all gluten free…on purpose! When was the last time you were able to order marinated steak tips off a menu? So naturally, this is what I ordered.image

The steak tips were tender and flavorful, and melted in my mouth. I highly recommend trying them. I wasn’t a fan of the mashed potatoes, which were extremely buttery. But then again, I don’t ever really like mashed potatoes. But the steak tips were the best that I’ve had in a long long time.

Jerry Remy’s only has one fryer, so the fries are not considered gluten free. However, my favorite food group, tortilla chips (for nachos), are 100% gluten free, thank god!

There are a few pasta dishes on the menu that can all be substituted with gluten free penne. The chicken saltimbocca can be made without the breading, and the scampi, one of the most popular dishes on the menu, and quite delicious, can also be enjoyed with penne pasta.IMG_5975

With seven large shrimp, we were very impressed with the serving size. The sauce was surprisingly light and incredibly fresh. Everything about this dish was delicious and fresh.

Jerry Remy’s menu also offers a variety of creative and tasty salads. From the Pan Seared Ahi Tuna and Asian Noodle salad, made with gluten free glass noodles, to the Harvest Salad, with grilled zucchini, yellow squash, red peppers, onions, pumpkin seeds and a citrus vinaigrette, there is something for every palate.IMG_5971

I was very impressed with the portion sizes and overall value of the meals. I was also impressed with the quality of the food; it greatly exceeded my expectations of ‘’sports bar food’’.  Finally! I have somewhere I can go with my friends to watch the game and I don’t have to worry about going hungry! And on that note, LET’S GO PATRIOTS!!!

View Larger Map

Jerry Remy's on Urbanspoon

Screen shot 2013-09-27 at 3.44.01 PM

#MyHailo Adventure to find the Best Gluten Free Burger in Boston

The plan was to visit 4 restaurants known for their burgers, over the course of one week and try one burger from each.

Screen shot 2013-09-27 at 3.44.01 PMGluten Free Boston Girl #MyHailo Adventure Video

Boston’s burger scene is getting bigger and bigger. This American classic is available on many restaurant menus and there are numerous joints in Boston specializing in Burgers alone. When I first started a gluten free diet back in 2009, it was nearly impossible to find a gluten free burger, not to mention a gluten free bun. Now, many restaurants are serving up gluten free burgers, but not always with a gluten free bun. So, I went on a mission with my sister Katie, to find the best gluten free burger in the city—one that is served on a bun, and not on a bed of lettuce.

Getting around to all these places using public transportation was going to be difficult, time consuming, and would take the fun out of it. That’s where Hailo saved the day. Getting around Boston using public transportation can be a challenge, and quite frankly, pretty frustrating. But Hailo got us where we wanted to go quickly and safely.

Each burger was judged based on the following criteria:

  1. Taste and quality of the meat
  2. Taste and quality of the gluten free bun
  3. Size
  4. Presentation
  5. Price (e.g., surcharge for GF bun or not)

DAY 1:

Our first stop was Four Burgers on Boylston Street. They use locally sourced grass fed beef raised without hormones, additives, steroids, or antibiotics. The beef is better for you, loaded with healthy omega-3’s, and our burger was not fatty at all.  Although it was cooked how we ordered it, the burger was very plain, had no seasoning, and was much too small for the size of the bun. The presentation was simple, but after all this is a fast food type of place. Burgers here range in price from $7.50 to $10.50.


The gluten free bun is made my Udi’s, and is also dairy free. It had a nice flavor, good texture, and held up well. The size of the burger, like I said before was rather small; it could not have been more than 6 oz. We were charged $1 extra for the gluten free bun.


Other gluten free options include the turkey burger (the salmon and veggie burgers are not gluten free) and all sides; house cut fries, sweet potato fries, potato chips, and sweet potato chips. There is only one fryer but the only thing that goes into the fryer are the potatoes, making it 100% gluten free.

Overall we rated Four Burgers a 5 out of 10.

Four Burgers on Urbanspoon

Bonus: They accept payment through the level up app and you can save $1 during your first visit.

Next up, we used Hailo to hail a cab to get us to 5 Napkin Burger on Huntington Ave., near the Prudential Center. I’ve passed by this place numerous times while shopping at the Pru, but never actually stopped in for a bit to eat until now.

We ordered the original 5 Napkin Burger; 10 ounces of fresh ground chuck topped with Gruyere cheese, caramelized onions, and a rosemary aioli. This was hands down our favorite burger. It was big, thick, and juicy. The rosemary aioli and caramelized onion added great flavor. We were impressed with the creativity that went into this burger and the other menu offerings. In addition to the house burger, the menu features six other burgers: cheddar bacon, barbecue, lamb kofta burger, inside out burger and a burger salad. (The turkey, veggie, and sometimes the tuna burger, are not gluten free).


In addition to the great taste and flavor of the burger, we were impressed with the presentation. It was served on a rice-based onion-flavored bun from Gillian’s. Although there is no extra charge for ordering a gluten free bun, burgers are on the pricier side, ranging in price from $13.95 to $16.95.

Overall we rated 5 Napkin Burger a 9 out of 10.

Five Napkin Burger on Urbanspoon

Five Napkin Burger on Urbanspoon

We met up again the next night after work, to check out two more burger joints. We hailed a Hailo taxi to our third stop on our burger short-list, Back Deck. The Back Deck is the only restaurant we visited with a separate gluten free menu. Here, they only cook gluten free items on a grill dedicated for gluten free diners (bonus points!). Also, no gluten products ever go into their fryers. They take allergy awareness very seriously.


The gluten free menu offers 6 burgers, ranging in price from $11-$14, served on a brioche bun from Cutris Street Bakery for an extra $1. We ordered the Mexicali Burger topped with pepper jack, sliced avocado, green chili salsa, and chipotle mayo. The 8 oz. burger did not have a lot of flavor itself, but with everything that was added onto it, it was delicious. Our waiter offered to split the burger for us, even though he forgot to forgo the cheese. The brioche bun was our favorite gluten free bun that we tried. It was fluffy and moist, and not grainy at all.

Overall we rated Back Deck a 7 out of 10.

Back Deck on Urbanspoon

For our final stop, we grabbed a Hailo cab and made our way over to Boston Burger Company. The menu has so many options; it was a bit overwhelming. The focus here is 8 oz of certified Angus beef burgers dressed with innovative and tantalizing toppings, condiments, fruits, sauces, and anything else you could imagine that tastes good on a burger. This menu was by far the most creative of the 4 restaurants, and almost all of the burgers were gluten free.


We ordered the Bruschetta burger with basil pesto mayo, and without the provolone cheese. The 8 oz. burger was served with a side salad, which was very simple, and nothing special. The burger itself was very juicy and full of flavor. Boston Burger Co, like Four Burgers, uses Udi’s gluten free hamburger buns. With no extra charge for a gluten free bun, burgers here cost $8.50-$10.75 each.

Overall we rated Boston Burger Company an 8 out of 10.

Boston Burger Company on Urbanspoon

Big thanks to Hailo for helping us out on our adventure!!

Boston Burger Company on Urbanspoon