We just returned from traveling gluten free to the Dreams Huatulco Resort in Mexico! We went for my cousin's wedding and it was beautiful! They had quite a few gluten free options in the all inclusive resort so that was awesome!
Let's Start with my Top Tips to Travel to Mexico Gluten Free!
I have traveled to Mexico several times being gluten free. This was the first time traveling to Mexico City then taking a different plane to Huatulco. I really need to learn more Spanish as it would have made finding things in the airport much easier!
I always travel with snacks in case there are no safe food options and I am so glad that I did! We could not find any safe restaurant food in Mexico City. I brought the Spanish Card with instructions for restaurants for gluten free however, we still didn't have much luck. In general airports are harder to find gluten free foods in my opinion!
I also packed my Nima Partners gluten sensor to test the food and I am so happy that I did! I had several foods that did not test safe during our trip! Thankfully, I did not eat them and was not sick on our trip! I highly recommend having one if you eat out or travel!
I also pack dehydrated meals in my suitcase in case things get desperate! You can find several certified gluten free options on Amazon!
Traveling With Celiac Disease
We just got home from the Dreams resort in Huatulco, Mexico. It is very beautiful there but hot hot hot! And this is coming from someone who lives in Arizona year round! My cousin got married and we are blessed to share their special day with them. It was fun seeing my family and meeting new friends! I am excited to share our trip with you and how we navigated eating gluten-free for our 6 days there.
The Dreams resorts post photos of gluten-free food options on Facebook which made me excited to travel there. I was happy to meet people who worked there that took food allergies seriously and made accommodations for them! As you will see from my Nima tests not all restaurants on property were safe for me to eat at.
I am thankful for Rogelio, the manager at the World Cafe. He made sure I had a safe breakfast and lunch every day we ate there! He even had them make me fresh guacamole and fried corn tortillas into chips in a separate pan.
I am also thankful for Hedgar, the kitchen manager at Himitsu who made me food the first night we arrived and I was so hungry from not finding any food at the Mexico City airport, but I am getting ahead of the story. He made us food that was safe to eat that wasn’t on the menu.
I am also thankful for the kitchen staff at room service who brought us safe food to eat day or night. Everything they delivered to our room was safe for me to eat!
And last but not least, the wedding planner, Monica who made sure the food was safe for me to eat at the wedding. Thank you! Plus I happen to like her name- it’s the same as my daughter’s.
There were a few restaurants that were not as careful and gluten was found in almost all of my food there. My Nima Partners Sensor saved my bacon again! I am always thankful for it because our trip would have been awful had I eaten the food at those other places. We ended up going back to Himitsu to see Hedgar after I couldn’t eat anything at the Sea Side Grill. He made sure my food was safe and it was delicious.
We boarded our flight bound for Mexico City. I was optimistic about finding food to eat there since eating at Mexican restaurants is usually pretty easy. We landed at Mexico City airport, terminal one, near Area B. The only restaurants we saw were mostly fast food, Chilis and one called Wings. I took a screenshot of the Celiac Information card in Spanish once I realized I didn’t know very much Spanish and I couldn’t fumble my way through finding food asking for sin gluten.
We were hot and hungry and had asked 10 places before one said yes! We asked about the fajitas and were told yes and that the tortillas were corn. After I tested the food neither tested safe and we were told the tortillas were flour. UGH! My husband ate the food since he doesn’t get sick, he washed his hands and face to not contaminate me and we left. Thankfully I travel with food in my purse so I ate a protein bar. I was disappointed and I started to feel like having Celiac is such a pain in the butt.
We arrived late in Huatulco because our flight was delayed. We were hungry and tired. Sushi sounded good so we went to Himitsu where my whole family was sitting having dinner! We didn’t know where everyone was and picked the restaurant randomly that they were at. It was great to see everyone and we were happy to see items on the menu listed as gluten-free! The restaurant manager Hedgar came over and gave us options from the menu and sushi! We ordered one of everything and it all tested gluten-free with Nima! I could have hugged him! He asked all about Nima and how it works so we explained it and he was happy that they did such a good job because he takes food allergies very seriously! I love it when people get excited about smiley faces just like I do.
This maybe should be titled day one and a half… My hubby was hungry around midnight so we ordered room service. We don’t usually eat late at night but we were on vacation so what the hey! They delivered the most delicious ceviche I think I have ever had in my life! They also made us a gluten free eggs, potatoes (french fries) and refried beans. It was yummy and we slept amazingly with full bellies.
We had lunch at Oceana, and it was various seafood salads. It tested safe and so did the Pina Colada!
We went out to dinner with my family to the Sea Side Grill. This restaurant did not prove to be a good place for me to eat. The ceviche tested safe but the crab soup, steak and shrimp all came back with gluten found. We ended up going back to Himitsu and Hedgar made sure we had safe and yummy food.
We went to the World Cafe for breakfast, which is a buffet and buffets make me nervous. Rogelio the kitchen manager came over to talk about options. He delivered an omelette with veggies, beans, and bread for breakfast. All items tested safe!
Nima is hard to see but it’s smiley! I can’t find the picture of the omelette with veggies but it was safe…..
We went into the town of La Crucecita to do some shopping and explore. It is a cute town with a beautiful church and a square to purchase any trinkets from Mexico you would like. We felt safe and enjoyed experiencing the town. This included indulging in the best margarita with freshly squeezed juice- the sign even said it was the best margarita in town and they could be right!
We went to the World Cafe for lunch and had fresh guacamole and chips. They also pan sauteed Mahi Mahi with veggies for us. It was delicious.
That night there was a Fiesta! The manager walked me through the buffet and told me what was safe and what was not. Since buffets make me nervous, I opted for the salad section where every item was gluten-free. I figured it cuts down on cross contamination because no one would be using the spoon to load up their flour tortillas.
We ordered room service today and it was delicious omelettes with beans and fresh guacamole. It is the day my cousin is getting married so we thought we should sleep in and be a little lazy to prepare for a fun evening.
The wedding was beautiful and the food was amazing!
They served salmon with cream cheese on cucumber for the appetizer. Next course was bruschetta on cucumbers for me. The Cesar salad was delicious. Surf and turf with these cute rolled up veggies were safe and yummy. I was shocked that they even made gluten-free tiramisu! It was so good! The wedding was right on the water. There were tears, laughter and full bellies with lots of champagne to go around. We danced until the wee hours of the morning!
Let’s just say that I didn’t eat breakfast today due to the previous night’s activities. My sweet husband did bring me an omelette with beans back from The World Cafe and Rogelio. It looked awesome and it was safe, however, I didn’t eat very much of it.
We went to The World Cafe to see Rogelio for lunch after I was feeling better. He made us 2 hamburger patties with lettuce, onion, and tomatoes. It took a while to make because they had to get ground beef without breadcrumbs added to it. It was worth the wait. So yummy! He also made us gluten free chips and guacamole.
This was our last night at this beautiful location. We went out to the adult only restaurant called Portofino. It is Italian food and has a beautiful view of the water. Our restaurant manager seemed like he understood that I could not eat gluten but then offered to make risotto with a little gluten in it. Insert eye roll. Strike One.
I at once became uncomfortable but figured if the food doesn’t test safe we can go see Hedgar at Himitsu for some delicious sushi. My husband also ordered gluten free so he didn’t risk cross-contaminating me by kissing me. Awe…
The first course I ordered Beef Carpaccio and He ordered a Caprese Salad. It was yummy and mine tested gluten-free. I did not test his food until dessert.
The second course of Cream Stuffed Chicken without the sauce. They tried to deliver regular pasta and told me it was gluten-free. When they put it in front of my cousin, I asked if it was really gluten free and they did not answer. My guess is no. Strike number two on my confidence for gluten-free.
For dessert I wanted to try both gluten-free dessert options, so my hubby ordered the Pana Cotta and I ordered the Turmeric Ice Cream. When they were delivered to the table I asked again if they were gluten-free because they looked like everyone else’s desserts. When they came back with gluten found the manager came over and said they should have been modified and not had the cookie in them. Strike three. At that point, I didn’t have any more capsules with me at the restaurant and I was out of tries.
We got up early and went to the World Cafe for coffee and our usual breakfast. It was perfect! We had coffee with my Dad and cousins then headed to the airport to catch our flight home. We landed in Mexico City on a mission to find food. After the trip down I wasn’t very hopeful but had back up food in the event I needed it.
We landed in Area G which is a totally different feel than Area B. Walking up and down and checking every place out, we decided to try Sala 21 a more upscale restaurant and see what we could find. I first tried my not so awesome Spanish skills then realized I wasn’t communicating so pulled out the screenshot of the celiac card. The server said yes and pointed at some options. We tried the beef tacos and a Wedge salad. Both items tested safe! I couldn’t believe it!
We ate and headed to our flight back to Phoenix!
There are so many wonderful people in this world who may or may not speak the same language as you that are willing to help. I was so thankful to everyone who helped us on this trip. The janitor in Mexico City who helped us find our Area because they aren’t well marked. The staff at Dreams who went out of their way to make my food safe. The people who smiled and didn’t laugh at my lack of Spanish who tried to figure out what I was trying to say. Don’t let fear of new places slow you down.
We had a great time and I look forward to our next trip to Mexico!
Best Wishes for Gluten Free Dishes!
I am so glad you are here!