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Gluten-free foods in unexpected places

Spec's Wine and Finer Foods deli counter
Spec's Wine and Finer Foods deli counterLeeanne Rebic Hay

You never know where you might find an opportunity to eat a nice meal that is reasonably priced and gluten-free (g-f). Asking lots of questions of store employees and friends yields some good places, and every once in a while, you just stumble into one. The weekend is a great time to explore new places.

Many locations of Spec’s Wine, Spirits and Finer Foods have a great deli inside of their stores. Featuring Deitz and Watson cold cuts (almost all g-f), you can order the ingredients of a sandwich without the bread that they will serve to you in its own plastic takeout box. A lunch of Deitz and Watson sliced buffalo chicken breast, Swiss cheese, lettuce & tomato, and a bottle of water all for $2.50 cash. Nice. There are two Plano locations and several in Dallas. See Spec's website for a location near you http://www.specsonline.com

And speaking of Dietz and Watson, for over 75 years this company has produced high quality deli meats. You can find out about their products and additional stores where they are sold by visiting http://www.dietzandwatson.com . They have an entire webpage called ‘Delete the Wheat with Dietz and Watson’ and over 400 of their products are gluten-free. Also, all of their artisanal cheeses and condiments are g-f, too. In addition, D & W has another webpage with easy-to-make recipes using their products.

If you’re in the mood for something hot and on a hidden menu, visit Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers at 6513 W. Park Blvd., in Plano. Ask for ‘naked fingers’ and be prepared to enjoy flavorful, moist chicken fingers without the breading. Cane’s will tell you that there may be some cross contamination (if you’re very highly sensitive to gluten this might not be for you). Get ready to enjoy these naked chicken fingers in a Cane’s Box Combo and remember to ask for double slaw - no Texas toast – and a drink for a delicious and filling meal. Sublime and easy to find at: http://www.raisingcanes.com

There are a variety of stores and restaurants with g-f options that don’t advertise about them. However, their websites will often provide specific information about nutrition and allergens so that you can expand your choices of where you spend your food and dining dollars. As the Bible tells us, ‘Seek, and you will find’.