Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Noodles & Company

I first ate at a Noodles & Company a couple of years ago on a trip back to my hometown.  You can read about all the amazing gluten free food I ate on my most recent trip to Pittsburgh, including a couple of dishes at Noodles & Company, here.  

As soon as you walk into any Noodles & Company location, you will see a big board with all of their menu choices, including the calories each dish has. 

Today, we ate at the Noodles & Company in Williamsburg, Virginia.  I spoke to Jacob, the general manager, about how they cook their gluten free pasta.  Just like in Orlando, I was told that they cook their gluten free pasta before they cook any pasta with gluten.  Having worked in an Italian restaurant when I was in grad school, I asked if they dip their pre-cooked pasta in boiling water before they serve it.  He said that they do not do that with any sauteed dish, so I was safe getting the Pad Thai.  Jacob did have a gluten free menu to show me, and the cook was told that it was an "allergy" order.

Today, I ordered a large portion of the Pad Thai with shrimp, for a total of 900 calories.  I guess I need to take an extra walk tonight!  :-)

We ate at the new Noodles & Company near Downtown Disney in Lake Buena Vista just last week.  

Here's the small portion of Pad Thai with shrimp that I ordered in Orlando, which is only 500 calories.  Noodles & Company describes their Pad Thai as a rice noodle stir-fry with scrambled egg, carrots, cabbage, sweet chile, citrus, peanuts, Asian sprouts and cilantro.  This dish is always consistently good.

Noodles & Company's Pad Thai is gluten free without modification, but they also have a gluten free fusilli that can be used in the following dishes:  penne rosa, pesto cavatappi, pasta fresca, whole grain tuscan linguine, spaghetti with marinara, buttered noodles, and the Med salad.  Other options with modification include the Chinese chop salad, Caesar salad, and the tossed green side salad.  You can read more about the gluten free fusilli here, in my Pittsburgh blog post.

You can view Noodles & Company's nutrition & allergen guide here.  Their allergen menu does remind customers that there is a risk of cross contamination, as there is in any restaurant that isn't 100% gluten free.  This is why I like to dine at Noodles & Company when it is not busy, and I ask a lot of questions about food preparation.  My whole gluten-eating family loves Noodles & Company, and it is very reasonably priced.

You can view Noodles & Company's store locator here.   They have restaurants on State Road 535 in Lake Buena Vista right outside of Downtown Disney, on Sand Lake Road in Dr. Phillips, and a third location on Colonial near Fashion Square Mall.

April 20, 2015 Update

Yesterday, we had lunch at the newly opened Noodles & Company on Colonial Drive near Fashion Square Mall.  The manager told me that they cook their gluten free pasta first in the morning, and that they do not dip it in the same water they use for gluten-filled pasta to reheat it before serving.  I enjoyed a small portion of Pad Thai with shrimp, while my family devoured all their gluten-filled favorites.  I am sure they will be begging to go to Noodles & Company after church every Sunday from now on.

December 13, 2015 Update

Last night, we had dinner at the Noodles & Company on Colonial Drive.  I ordered the pesto cavatappi with grilled chicken and gluten free fusilli.  This dish features pasta with basil pesto, garlic, mushrooms, tomatoes, wine, cream, and Parmesan.  My pasta was al dente, and the sauce was creamy and flavorful.  This is one of my daughter Kate's favorites at Noodles & Company, and I definitely liked it enough to order it again.

What are your favorite gluten free dishes at Noodles & Company?  


  1. Ironically, the Noodles & Co. I went to yesterday (Noodles & Company: Interlocken) told me that they DO put the gluten free noodles in the same water. I'm not sure what to believe now. :(

    1. That is why I ask at every location I go to. There doesn't seem to be consistency.

  2. My daughter and I ate at a Noodles and Co. In Fredericksburg, Viginia a few weeks ago. She had symptoms afterward, even though we asked questions and ordered gluten free. Very disappointed. I'm not sure if we will go back. The staff seem confused when I talked to them. I asked for a manager and he was more helpful. Their allergy menu is confusing. Also, they left off the cheese they normally put in top of her order, so she asked for that and they brought it over. Maybe that was part of the problem? I'm not sure where the issue was.