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Texas Roadhouse in Killeen, TX

August 13, 2007
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EDIT!!I feel the need to add an extra edit since so many people are viewing this article (Record high site visit today!) I wrote this article nearly 2 years ago. Since then, Texas Roadhouse has stoped offering a gluten free menu at many locations. When I asked the corporate office, they said that they were working on it. But I have heard from Celiac’s in other parts of the country who have a wonderful relationship with their local Texas Roadhouse, and have good luck eating there gluten free. Please be sure to ask for the manager and ask a LOT of questions. If they don’t seem to know what they are doing, please don’t take a chance. I also ALWAYS suggest contacting the corporate office when something like this is going on (back and forth with the gluten free menu). Thanks! 

 

Do you hear that? I think the angels are singing! Texas Roadhouse has a Gluten-Free menu!! Now, before you wet your pants, take note. This is new to them, and their “gluten-free menu” has a few issues. Let me tell you what happened….

          

  I went to Texas Roadhouse with my mom, because while visiting this week, she wanted to have one of the great steaks that she remembers from her visit 2 years ago. “I love their steaks too, Mom, but I don’t know if the salad dressing is ok for me to eat….or anything else for that matter!” But, I lowered my head in worry, and considered that “salad, with nothing on it, would always be an option.”  I feel like a rabbit. But lettuce is good for you, (right?) so I decided to give it a go.

          

  While waiting for our table, I watched a cook throw the steaks from the searing grill to the open flame grill. In between these steps, he smothered it with a mysterious tan powder. My heart sank. “Guess their steaks aren’t gluten free,” I said to my mom. I dreaded asking the manager for the ingredients list to the “secret” coating they poured on their steaks. But alas! The very kind manager has a child that is allergic some food items, so he appreciated my question and fetched me the “new gluten-free menu thing” so I can see what is safe to eat! The menu is a great start, but does not address the gluten in cross contamination situations or in the sauces. I was so surprised to see the menu that I asked the manager several questions, and he stayed at the table and scratched out notes with me!  

 

Their gluten-free starters include Cheese Fries (but no chili), Naked Buffalo wings (naked means no breading!) and Tater skins, but the menu fails to mention that the wings and tater skins are fried in the same fryer as the Onion Blossom, so you would have to request the French Fry fryer or the Fish Fryer (the fish has a corn meal breading only). And the mysterious steak seasoning is safe! He called the corporate office and confirmed that it was a mixture of many things, including garlic powder.

          

  And if you like your steaks smothered with something, you will want to avoid the Peppercorn or Portabella sauce (comes with the Filet Medallions automatically). And the mashed potatoes are ok, without brown or white gravy. The menu is pretty good looking, though, and includes many of their foods.

 

Some things should be a given, like bread and croutons. And I was informed that the salad preparer uses their hands to grab salad toppings, so you should ask them to sub a salad for another veggie, or if you are so bold (and I am), ask that “the salad preparer please change gloves” before making your salad, and “please do not touch croutons for another persons salad before making mine.”

          

  I visited the Texas Roadhouse location in Killeen, Texas. The steak I ordered was juicy and tender (you can call it “melt in your mouth” or “fall off the bone” or whatever analogy you want, it is a good steak)! The potato was big! And warm enough to melt the butter, but not too hot to eat. And my salad! I asked for the dressing on the side, and when it came (with the dressing on the side) I inspected the bowl for crouton pieces. Much to my happiness, I found none! Though my Mom, and the table next to us, asked if everything was ok, and if I needed a magnifying glass! I am sure that I looked silly, but hey, I didn’t get sick! Works for me!

 

 

The manager that I spoke with was Phillip Dunn, and he was very helpful. I will ask that the menu and contact information be posted on the Alamo Celiac website. Mr. Dunn informed me that the gluten-free menu should be available at all locations, though a manager might need to “download and print it out” since it is not very popular (yet!). And it is important to remember that at Texas Roadhouse, they make everything fresh at the location, so be prepared to ask questions. If they had to make a substitution in a recipe, you will want to know! But if you are like me, and you want a filet (cooked medium), baked potato (butter, real butter, and sour cream), and salad (with tomatoes only, and ranch on the side, and please, please, please hold the croutons, or better yet, don’t even touch the croutons….) then you will be happy to know that you can eat at Texas Roadhouse!

 

Texas Roadhouse Corporate Phone number : 1-800-TEX-ROAD or www.texasroadhouse.com

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