While traveling, and staying at a hotel or resort breakfast can be a challenge. Some hotels and B&B’s offer free breakfasts. But how do you avoid gluten?
If you are in a hurry just grab some fruit, clean it, and leave. After all you can be assured the fruit is gluten free. If you want to stay, you should observe how the wait staff warms the food up. In the past I, have asked to see the ingredients from various boxes so don’t be afraid to ask to see packages. You are looking for a variety of things. After I find out if I can eat the food I again observe the staff and how they handle the food I will be eating.
- Are they careful or sloppy?
- Do they use the same plate in a manner that might cause cross contamination?
- Once I decide that I can eat the breakfast I wait until they bring fresh food out and I take food from the fresh plate.
- I do ask for clean plate if they use the same plate for everything.
- If the staff does use the same plate I ask if they can use a different or fresh plate for me. I also sometimes give them my plate and ask them nicely if they could put some of the cooked product on my plate before they do anything else with it.
Always explain your diet the best you can and let the staff know that you have a special diet and that they should be very careful with your food. Tell them you get very sick and you must be extra careful.
In the hotels where they warm up sausage, eggs and pancakes I have found that I could eat the breakfast sausage and the eggs. These products came to the hotel already cooked and frozen so all the staff had to do was put them into the microwave and heat them up. I just asked to look at the boxes that the food came in so that I could read their ingredients. As mentioned, I always wait for a fresh batch of food to come out, and I even go as far as to use a clean fork to serve the food out of the pan or plate before it is dumped into the chafing dish.
For the other products served at the hotel like fruit be sure to wash it to make sure it is clean. If they are using bulk cereal it is probably not a cereal that you can eat so stay away unless you read the ingredients on the box or are certain that it is gluten-free. Remember that bulk cereals might have different ingredients than the versions that you are used to—or it could be another brand or another type. Hard boiled eggs are sometimes available—just be sure to ask for them right out of the pot or wash them very well.
Remember to always have a plan B and to be nice. I always grab a piece of fruit for later in case I have trouble finding lunch and it is a good snack to have. Once you have your breakfast it is out to lunch!