Guide to Eating Gluten Free in Iceland
Being a tiny country with an even smaller population, you might have the impression that Iceland doesn’t offer many options for visitors with food allergies. Surprisingly, Reykjavík is absolutely safe and very pleasant for people who are on a gluten-free diet. The following guide will give you a nice overview of the wide selection of places where you can enjoy the local food and stay gluten free. It is always good to know you can get a nice meal without having to worry about your sensitivity or disease bringing some nasty consequences.
Gluten-free shopping in Iceland
The variety of gluten-free products in supermarkets is fairly good. Gluten-free bread, crackers, cookies, nuts, chocolate, veggies and meat are all available in the largest supermarkets in Reykjavik: Krónan, Bónus, Hagkaup and Nettó.
These supermarkets can be found in the larger towns all around the country, however, there are not so many. Save this list of grocery stores in Iceland with a map and your search will be easy!
Some of the grocery stores called 10-11 have a salad bar – these stores are open around the clock and there are quite a few of them in the capital area.
Heilsuhúsið, the ‘Health Store’, is an amazing source of organic and local food, this shop has an entire section dedicated to gluten-free products. They have six shops in the country: four in the capital area, one in South Iceland and one in North Iceland.
There are quite a few roadside shops at the petrol stations around the Ring Road that offer snacks like sandwiches and hot dogs. Icelandic hot dogs often contain wheat and these small snack bars usually cannot cater for those with special dietary needs. Although they normally sell nuts, fruits, and the famous Icelandic Skyr, this is a type of yogurt which is gluten free.
It is advisable to do your shopping in Reykjavík before heading out to the countryside. The selection of products in little village stores is much smaller and the opening hours are less friendly. Always keep some own snacks, bread or crackers with you in case you cannot find places that can safely accommodate your dietary restriction.
If you are staying in a hostel, AirBnB or a campsite you might have a kitchen available to cook for yourself, this is a good plan B.
Restaurants and cafés with gluten-free options in Iceland
Restaurants are quite aware of gluten-free dietary requirements, it is, though, always a good idea to call them first and ask what options they are able to offer. They will also appreciate having extra time to prepare something suitable if they are willing to do so, and a great many are with sufficient notice.
If you have coeliac disease which is serious, make sure to call the restaurant ahead of time and inquire about their gluten-free menu and the possibility of contamination. Upon arrival, it is advised to double-check with your waiter again when you arrive, explaining your dietary limitations and the possible consequences of a failure to the person who will be serving you.
Those who like seafood and lamb are the luckiest because they will find something delicious to eat very easily. Chicken is also common in Iceland, but most restaurants usually offer something more characteristic of local cuisines, such as puffin, horse meat or beef. Pork is not that common in restaurants here.
We have created a list of restaurants and cafés in Iceland that offer gluten-free options. It is based on the recommendations of travelers who are on gluten-free diets. We have only featured those places which have good reviews on Tripadvisor, and ‘gluten-free’ has been mentioned in at least two positive reviews. We have highlighted those places that have plenty of very positive reviews regarding their gluten-free options and we are constantly updating the list.
Verði þér að góðu – Enjoy your meal!
Restaurants in Reykjavík with the best reviews regarding their gluten-free options
- Apotek – Austurstraeti 16, Reykjavik. A fun mix of Icelandic and European cuisine with a smoking hot Argentinean grill. Tel.: +354 551 0011
- Gló – The most known place in Reykjavík for vegan, vegetarian, healthy, gluten-free and raw options. Four locations in the capital area. Tel.: +354 553-1111
- Fiskmarkaðurinn – The Fish Market – Aðalstræti 12, Reykjavík. One of the most popular seafood restaurants in town. Tel.: +354 578 8877
- Messinn – Laekjargata 6b, Reykjavik. One of the most popular seafood restaurants in town. Tel.:+354 546 0095
- Nepalese kitchen – Laugavegur 60A, Reykjavik. One of the best Asian restaurants in Reykjavík with amazing gluten-free reviews. Tel.: +354 517 7795
- Old Iceland – Laugavegur 72, Reykjavik. Friendly family run restaurant, focusing on local seafood and meat. Tel.: +354 551 6131
- Grillmarkaðurinn – The Grill Market – Lækjargata 2A, Reykjavík. Popular grill restaurant with a wide selection. Tel.: +354 571 7777
- Tapas Barinn – Vesturgata 3b, Reykjavik. A tapas bar with Icelandic seafood, lamb, puffin and other native treats on their menu. Tel.: +354 551 2344
- Sjávargrillið – Seafood Grill – Skolavörðustigur 14, Reykjavik. A popular seafood grill restaurant with a wide selection and very good GF reviews. Tel.: +354 571 1100
- Salka Valka – Fish and More – Skólavörðustígur 23, Reykjavík. Friendly café-restaurant with sandwiches, snacks, cold and hot dishes. Tel.: +354 571 128
Cafés, desserts and ice cream with gluten-free options in Reykjavík
- Cafe Babalú – Skolavörðustigur 22a, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 555 8845
- Eldur and Is – Skolavörðustigur 2, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 571 2480
- Joylato – Njálsgata 1, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 555 1327
- Kaffivagninn – Grandagarður 10, Reykjavik. Tel.:+354 551 5932
- Stofan – Vesturgata 3, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 546 1842
Sushi restaurants in Reykjavík with gluten-free options
- Ósushi – Posthusstraeti 13, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 561 0652
- Sakebarinn and Sushibarinn – Laugavegur 2, Reykjavík. Tel.: +354 552 4444
Other restaurants in Reykjavík with gluten-free options
- AALTO Bistro – Saæmundargata 11, The Nordic House, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 551 0200
- Bergsson Mathús – Templarasund 3, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 571 1822
- Bike Cave – Einarsnes 36, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 770 3113
- Forrétta barinn – Nýlendugata 14, Reykjavík. Tel.: +354 517 1800
- Frederiksen Ale House – Hafnarstraeti 5, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 571 0055
- Geysir Bistro – Aðalstræti 2. Reykjavík. Tel.: +354 517 4300
- Grillhúsið – Tryggvagata 20, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 527 5000
- Islenski barinn – The Icelandic Bar – Ingolfsstraeti 1a, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 517 6767
- Kopar – Geirsgata 3, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 567 2700
- Lækjarbrekka – Bankastraeti 2, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 551 4430
- Lifandi Markadur – shop & restaurant Borgartun 24, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 585 8700
- Matarkjallarinn – Foodcellar – Adalstraeti 2, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 558 0000
- Nauthóll – Nauthólsvegur 106, 101 Reykjavík. Tel.: +354 599 6660
- Ostabúðin – Skolavörðuustigur 8, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 562 2775
- Resto – Raudararstigur 27-29, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 546 9550
- Reykjavik Chips – Vitastigur 10, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 552 2221
- Saffran – Alfheimar, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 578 7874
- Satt – Nauthólsvegur 52, Icelandair Hotel Reykjavik Natura, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 444 4050
- Sægreifinn – The Sea Baron – Geirsgata 8, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 553 1500
- Sjávabarinn – Grandagarður 9, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 517 3131
- Snaps Bistro Bar – Þórsgata 1 | Oðinstorg, Reykjavik. Tel.: +354 511 6677
The larger capital area
- Gló – At four locations in the capital area. Tel.: +354 553-1111
- Hraðlestin – Reykjavík, and Kópavogur. Tel.: +354 578 3838
- Pallett – Strandgata 75, Hafnarfjordur. Tel:: +354 823 7627
- Lava Restaurant – At the Blue Lagoon 240 Grindavík. Tel.: +354 420 8800
- Bjargarsteinn mathús – Solvellir 15, Grundarfjorour. Tel.: +354 438 6770
- Hraun – Grundarbraut 2, Olafsvik. Tel.: +354 431 1030
- The Settlement Center Museum and Café – Brakarbraut 13-15, Borgarnes. Tel.: +354 437 1600
- Hotel Rjúkandi – Vegamót, Snæfellsnesvegur 311, Borgarnes. Tel: +354 788 9100
- Bláa Kannan – Hafnarstraeti 96, Akureyri. Tel.: +354 461 4600
- Kaffi Ilmur – Hafnarstraeti 107 b, Akureyri. Tel.: +354 571 1499
- Rub 23 – Kaupvangsstræti 6. Akureyri. Tel.: +354 462 2223
- Vogafjós Guesthouse – Vogafjosi, Lake Myvatn. Tel.: +354 464 4303
- Berg – In Icelandair Hotel Vik, Klettsvegur 1-5, Vik. Tel.: +354 487 1480
- Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon – Hnappavellir, Vatnajokull National Park. Tel.: Tel.+354 514 8300
- Fosshotel Vatnajökull – Lindarbakki, Höfn. Tel.: +354 478 2555
- Humarhöfnin – Hafnarbraut 4, Höfn. Tel.: +354 846 1114
- Pakkhús– Krosseyjarvegur 3, Höfn. Tel.: +354 478 2280
The list is not final, we update it regularly.
Spending time traveling you often spend much of your money of food especially when traveling to Iceland. Iceland can be quite an expensive place but there is a way to do it on a more cheaper matter.
Wherever you stop on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, pure beauty and magnificent silence are your constant companions. A few guest houses, hidden in the middle of nowhere, offer first-class service and gourmet local food. Adorable, tiny fishing villages entice travelers to stay and enjoy the idyllic countryside and fresh seafood that comes straight off the fishing vessels. You just have to know where to look for these marvelous places.
Traveling as a vegan can be a bit tricky, especially when you don't know the language. Here is a guide to begin a vegan in Iceland starting with Reykjavík and then slowly I will add restaurants all around Iceland for everyone to enjoy whilst traveling in this paradise we call home.