Gluten Free Adventures in Düsseldorf

12 June 2016

Strawberries, asparagus and the tastiest potatoes I've ever eaten!

I don't know why I haven't visited Germany before, it's surprisingly close to England really. The flight time from London Heathrow to Düsseldorf is only 55 minutes - shorter than my commute used to be! Before we left, I was quite worried about the does have quite a wheaty reputation after all.

This won't be an exhaustive commentary - as we were staying with family we were able to buy food at the supermarket and bring it home, which helped as I did eat a few salads while out and about just to be safe.

I googled 'gluten free Düsseldorf' when preparing for the trip but couldn't find a lot of resources out there. A Thai restaurant kept popping up but, more excitingly, an entirely gluten free patisserie - Isabella Glutenfreie Patisserie. We decided to visit on Saturday for a sugary fix before wandering around Düsseldorf. It's in a really lovely part of the city, across the river from the older part of town. I snapped this picture on our last evening, when my brother in law pointed across and told me that that was the part of town where we'd had cake. It was just after an enormous storm. Aren't the clouds and light beautiful?!

But back to the cake, oh my goodness it was really worth the trip! We'd had lunch before leaving but I think next time I'd eat there because the sandwiches looked really tasty and the bread itself was also delicious. The cakes though, just look at them. We decided to choose a different cake each so that we could all try them - even the wheat-eaters with me exclaimed at the amazing selection before us. I chose the American cheesecake, my mister opted for the mango mousse and my brother in law chose the strawberry tart, and we grabbed a table outside to sit and enjoy them over coffee.

My word, they were absolutely amazing. The cheesecake was the best I'd tasted since being diagnosed coeliac but I've marked out the strawberry tart all for me the next time we're able to visit (thank goodness for relatives in Düsseldorf!). It tasted like the patisserie I remember from trips to France when I was small and it had a small perfect strawberry mousse on top. Melt in your mouth delicious.

As you can see, even narrowing down the above three choices was difficult...

If you're planning a visit, there were a few places to sit outside if you're lucky enough to visit Düsseldorf while the sun is shining but there were a  tables inside too so it's a good place to stop for lunch. Make sure you leave room for something sweet!

Isabella Glutenfreie Patisserie
Arnulfstraße 4, 40545 Düsseldorf, Germany

Isabella's was definitely my gluten free highlight of the trip but that's not to say that I struggled elsewhere. As I said above, we ate at my sister and brother in law's a lot and they also put on a BBQ on the Sunday for us. We found that a lot of the German sausages were naturally gluten free and even
found a gluten free beer in the supermarket. Clearly, I wasn't able to fully experience the German beer halls and while one place we went to made me feel really awkward by choosing wine over beer (apparently it was just the guy's sense of humour but hey, way to make a coeliac who in a perfect world wouldn't have to *choose* the gluten free option feel welcome) we went to another place and it was such a fun experience, despite not being able to enjoy the beer. There were plenty of other beverages to choose from!

Not an authentic German cuisine but another place we visited, that I wholeheartedly recommend, was Okinii - a Japanese restaurant. Apparently Düsseldorf has Germany's largest Japanese community and so it's a good place to go to for fine, authentic Japanese food. Granted, I can't eat most Japanese food anymore (sob!) but this place offers an all you can eat option. A tablet is left on the table and you can each choose 5 options, which are brought to you fairly quickly, and after a few rounds you have to wait at least 15 minutes or so before ordering more. I was very content to choose from the sushi/sashimi options and it was so so tasty. The tastiest sashimi I've had in a long time.
Immermannstraße 35, 40210 Düsseldorf, Germany

This was just a short trip and won't be our last, so I'm looking forward to discovering more of what Germany has to offer by way of gluten free options. I won't feel as concerned the next time either - people had some knowledge of what gluten free food entailed and there were options around, even if at times I had to order outside the box slightly. But hey, travelling as a coeliac means you have to do that sometimes and not relax in a restaurant until you know what options there are and what you're going to get!

Please do let me know if you've been to Germany before and can recommend some particularly good places to visit. We're hoping to return before Christmas to take in the Christmas markets - have I brought up Christmas too soon?! I don't care, I LOVE CHRISTMAS!


  1. Oh my word! How exciting?! That cake shop looks glorious. I would choose cheesecake too. Another place to add to the long list of 'safe' places to visit with Roo! Thanks for sharing this.

    1. I think she'll love you for taking her there - it was absolutely amazing!

  2. Looks amazing! I've never been to Düsseldorf - I need to go!

  3. Of course it's not too early to talk about Christmas! I have a card set aside just for you for your Christmas in July! XD

    Looks like you had such a lovely time in Germany.

    1. Haha awww Mels, you remembered! VERY excited to receive that :D

      It was really wonderful, a much-needed break too! x


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