*some of the products in this blog post were gifted by brands for the purpose of review. These are marked with (*).
So, I’m back from Gran Canaria now and my body is SUFFERING!
Too much alcohol is definitely a contributing factor but my diet has been all over the place for the last week and my stomach is just not a fan, so I am more than ready to get back to a healthy, naturally gluten free diet!
I thought I’d reflect on what I ate in Gran Canaria, how I coped out there with Coeliac Disease and some recommendations for where to eat if you’re heading there!
Anyone with Coeliac Disease will tell you to never travel without gluten free snacks on hand and honestly, I didn’t pack my snacks well enough this time!
I left all my packing super last minute and didn’t really think about what I wanted or needed to take with me enough! I was sent a few tasty treats from Light Bites* and Health Lab*, so I had some crisps and protein balls with me for snacking on if I was stuck!
I did buy some more snacks from a SPAR supermarket while I was out there which made a massive difference to what I was able to eat. I bought Schar bread and Nutella for breakfast, Pom Bears, Lays crisps which are labelled ‘sin gluten’ and even some Schar biscuits.
I did manage to find quite a lot of gluten free foods in the shops out there but I would still always take snacks with me, no matter how confident I was about the food where I was going!
All Inclusive Buffet
I feel like for ‘normal’ people, all inclusive buffets are pretty much all the same but for Coeliacs, although the food selection may be the same, the amount you can eat and how easily you can eat, varies from place to place.
When I went all inclusive in Tenerife, the buffet there had labels on each food with allergen symbols, so that was a lot easier whereas at this hotel, it was literally a guessing game.
I basically ate rice, boiled potatoes, vegetables and a bit of grilled meat for lunch and dinner throughout the week which got very boring towards the end but it was safe and easy.
For the first couple of days, I was having eggs for breakfast but I wasn’t enjoying them, so that’s when I picked up bread and Nutella and had that for breakfast – untoasted of course due to cross contamination.
Out and About
We actually did venture out for food a couple of times and I’ll be honest, I was apprehensive but the fact I successfully did eat out is huge progress for me.
At one time, I just wouldn’t have agreed to eat out abroad for fear but I am so much more confident and relaxed about it now and I love that!
One of the places we ate was Burger King which I know is laughable but when they have gluten free cheeseburgers, you can’t keep me away! The ‘sin gluten’ cheeseburgers were only 3 euros and so so good. They’re way bigger than the regular cheeseburgers, loaded with cheese and the bread was so soft and delicious.
They seemed to be prepared in a safe way and I never had any ill-effects from eating them!
We did eat out one night at a ‘proper’ restaurant called Papa Joe’s in Playa Del Ingles. It was super affordable and the staff were clued up on allergens. The options were limited for what I could have but luckily, what I wanted was one of the options.
I had a jacket potato stuffed with peppers, strips of fillet steak and topped with cheese and it was so tasty and didn’t make me feel bloated or sluggish at all!
The only other place we bought food from was Leon at the airport! I was so excited to see the Leon restaurant at Gran Canaria airport as I knew I’d be able to eat well! Unfortunately, they don’t do the gluten free nuggets out there but I had the Roast Chicken Mezze with baked fries and got a lemon and ginger crunch cake for the plane, so I was still very happy!
So, all in all, eating in Gran Canaria was manageable and at times, even enjoyable! The food I had out and about was super tasty and I even managed to try some new gluten free treats and snacks out there that we don’t have here, so definitely a good experience!
Have you been to the Canary Islands? How did you find gluten free out there?