1

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Paleo-friendly restaurants in Chicago?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 28, 2011 at 1:37 AM

I'm planning a trip with the girlfriend to Chicago in a week or so, and I'd love to find some paleo-friendly places to eat there. I know Bistro 110 has a gluten-free menu, and are very allergy-conscious, so they should be great. Beyond that, I'm not sure.

I'm fine with dairy, rice, and semi-paleo cheats - this is a vacation, after all - but I do need to avoid nuts and soy since I am allergic.

7767e05a8c4504f6be03f13ee40815cd

(1299)

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

Fogo de Chao was amazing! One of the best meals I've ever had. Everything was excellent (although the meat's a bit too salty).

7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

(18701)

on August 11, 2011
at 05:35 PM

Oh good lord, I have been doing a protein sparing modified fast and I SHOULD NOT HAVE LOOKED AT THAT WEBSITE. Mmmmmmmm pizza. That's good to know though, WyldKard. Thanks!

07ca188c8dac3a17f629dd87198d2098

(7970)

on August 11, 2011
at 05:20 PM

Oh fabulous, I wish I had known that sooner!

Medium avatar

(5136)

on April 21, 2011
at 03:16 PM

sounds pretty great. it'd be awesome to do a fifth quarter style dinner with these guys. too bad i'm not in chicago anymore.

Medium avatar

(5136)

on April 21, 2011
at 03:11 PM

Giordano's pizza??

Medium avatar

(5136)

on April 21, 2011
at 03:09 PM

some restaurants do offer extremely Paleo friendly meals. The Bristol in Chicago offers roast bone marrow, and fries fried in duck fat. They often offer offal (say that quickly 5 times) and their meats are locally farmed in the right ways. These are the kind of restaurants I think of when someone asks about "paleo-friendly"

Medium avatar

(5136)

on April 21, 2011
at 02:16 PM

skip DMK unless you like to be told how your burger will be cooked and that way is well done. (seriously, the patties are small, flat and they won't let you order them less than well done.) Old Town Social offers a FAR far better grass fed burger (with optional house made bacon and farmed egg on top) and they grind the meat daily, so you can order it rare even if you want.

7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

(18701)

on February 28, 2011
at 03:32 PM

Yes! Avoid the salad bar so you have room for more MEAT at Fogo de Chao! I never had to request small pieces of meat though and I definitely try them all, some twice! Thanks for the suggestions Eric. I will have to try to find some of them.

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12 Answers

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2
7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

on February 28, 2011
at 01:54 AM

We have a few Brazilian steakhouses here. I have only been to Fogo de Chao http://www.fogodechao.com/ and it's excellent. I don't know where their meat comes from and when I am going out for a special dinner, I don't really worry about it. There is also Brazzaz, but I haven't been there. http://www.brazzaz.com/

I've wanted to try the french fries at Duck Fat Grill http://www.duckfatgrill.com/, but again, I've never been there. Not much on their menu looks extremely Paleo friendly.

Here is a list from urban spoon listed as gluten-free friendly.

http://www.urbanspoon.com/t/2/1/Chicago/Gluten-Free-Friendly-restaurants

7767e05a8c4504f6be03f13ee40815cd

(1299)

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

Fogo de Chao was amazing! One of the best meals I've ever had. Everything was excellent (although the meat's a bit too salty).

2
77ecc37f89dbe8f783179323916bd8e6

(5002)

on February 28, 2011
at 04:58 AM

Rather than list them, I'll provide you with some good resources.

A gluten free blog run by a fellow paleo Chicagoan:

http://chiangcw.blogspot.com/

Here is what happens when you search "grass fed beef" into Yelp:

http://www.yelp.com/search?find_desc=grass+fed+beef&find_loc=Lakeview,+Chicago,+IL#cflt=restaurants&find_desc=%22grass+fed%22&find_loc=Chicago,+IL

I can vouch for:

DMK ($8 grass fed burgers with fried egg)

Lula (hip, creative new American; once saw a whole skinned deer delivered through the front door)

Great Lake Pizza: The ultimate cheat meal if you can get a table. It's the place that GQ rated best in America. The thought of it has me repeating Ba Ba Ba while gobs of spit fall from my lips.

And I'll second the person who said Fogo de Chao: make sure you (i) avoid the salad bar, (ii) avoid the carbage they bring to the table automatically, and (iii) request small pieces of each meat so that you have room to try them all.

7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

(18701)

on February 28, 2011
at 03:32 PM

Yes! Avoid the salad bar so you have room for more MEAT at Fogo de Chao! I never had to request small pieces of meat though and I definitely try them all, some twice! Thanks for the suggestions Eric. I will have to try to find some of them.

Medium avatar

(5136)

on April 21, 2011
at 02:16 PM

skip DMK unless you like to be told how your burger will be cooked and that way is well done. (seriously, the patties are small, flat and they won't let you order them less than well done.) Old Town Social offers a FAR far better grass fed burger (with optional house made bacon and farmed egg on top) and they grind the meat daily, so you can order it rare even if you want.

1
F77c6462cf6596fe6dabeeb5931821ab

(365)

on April 20, 2012
at 05:25 AM

I gotta put in my vote for Carnivale, a Latin American fusion restaurant. Here's my review from my first visit. http://www.yelp.com/biz/carnivale-chicago-2#hrid:tNdeVgomTZIB4IisFMOukQ I had been raving about it to Cherry since last October and so we went again tonight. Same great experience.

1
2fd93e91bb14e641a2bac9c6033e84e2

(1614)

on January 25, 2012
at 02:33 AM

Skip Fogo de Chao (and skip Giordanos...) -- check out Las Tablas up in Lincoln Park. Get the skirt steak with the spicy chimichurri and some grilled plantains if you want some carbs. SO GOOD. There might be a Groupon for it too if you're lucky!

1
B02bd4e59e737294327c7b236aa40e5a

(53)

on January 24, 2012
at 11:36 PM

I know this is an old topic but I just went to two restaurants that are Paleo Friendly (though many things on the menu are not).

The first is called HB (aka HomeBistro) at 3404 North Halsted Street Chicago, IL 60657. It had a lot of unusual meat cuts and choices on the menu such as pheasant and lamb and also featured liver, sweetbreads, and cow tongue. This makes for a nice variety and the dishes didn't have a lot of carbohydrates. If you're with nonpaleo people it's also BYOB. It's more of a nice/higher end type of place.

For more casual dining I went to Aloha Eats at 2534 North Clark Street Chicago, IL 60614. It's Hawaiian fast food and had grilled salmon and some other fish dishes and there were a few interesting side dishes, including Kimchi which I think is paleo friendly.

Chicago has good options for Paleo.

1
571f46cfae449c49f08be5d04cb05cd5

on February 28, 2011
at 02:52 AM

Rick Bayless has a couple restaurants, some paleo options, uses grass fed beef :) http://www.fronterakitchens.com/restaurants/restaurants.html

0
7d69a889a7367f92f8d391ef260458c9

on October 18, 2013
at 06:17 PM

Hey! I know this question is old, but in case it helps someone else, I interviewed members of the Paleo Chicago meetup group and they had a ton of great restaurant suggestions in (and around) Chicago.

Here's the article if anyone wants some recommendations: http://www.groupon.com/articles/chicagos-paleo-meetup-group-on-where-to-eat-and-why-to-try-the-caveman-diet-fd

0
Da8e709acde269e8b8bfbc09d1737841

(1906)

on August 11, 2011
at 05:16 PM

Pizano's has a gluten-free pizza in which the crust is made out of sausage.

7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

(18701)

on August 11, 2011
at 05:35 PM

Oh good lord, I have been doing a protein sparing modified fast and I SHOULD NOT HAVE LOOKED AT THAT WEBSITE. Mmmmmmmm pizza. That's good to know though, WyldKard. Thanks!

07ca188c8dac3a17f629dd87198d2098

(7970)

on August 11, 2011
at 05:20 PM

Oh fabulous, I wish I had known that sooner!

0
3ccab807e2b8bb1d050c3584d9c1dd12

(487)

on April 21, 2011
at 03:10 PM

Fogo de Chao is national chain we have that in the DC/MD/VA area.

Go to Giordano's!!!!

Medium avatar

(5136)

on April 21, 2011
at 03:11 PM

Giordano's pizza??

0
4a7929c2aa05bf11349d9e55cb542d47

on April 21, 2011
at 03:09 PM

Anyone ever consider giving X-Marks or a similar "underground restaurant" a chance? I've visited X-Marks a number of times before going Paleo and they do wonderful things with food. They cater to any dietary requests, and if a large enough group attend on a night, they'll customize an entire 5 course menu to meet any request.

I think it's about 20-25 people to rent out the place for a night to do a fully customized Paleo menu (i.e., not just remove gluten from the current item, but they'll design the menu from scratch to meet the requirements based on what is in season and available that day in the market). If you just show up on any other night, they'll take their existing menu and adapt it meet dietary requests. It's around $70 per person, BYOB, great service, great atmosphere, and great food.

They also can meet individual requirements if you do rent it out.. If we did a Paleo night, some people can choose dairy free, some (or all) could do gluten free, vegetarian, vegan, etc.. they'll happily meet any or all requests on a per person basis.

Medium avatar

(5136)

on April 21, 2011
at 03:16 PM

sounds pretty great. it'd be awesome to do a fifth quarter style dinner with these guys. too bad i'm not in chicago anymore.

0
39a1a0bc7855c084ac59df60fdf9c0dd

(1505)

on April 21, 2011
at 02:48 PM

I see a lot of posts inquiring about Paleo-friendly restaurants. I just assume most are not and aim for a place where I can get a steak or, less desirably, piece of broiled fish. If there are any gravies or sauces on it, I just order it without. Sometimes I'll ask for some crumbled blue cheese on the side.

I know blood glucose is not the only measure of whether something is Paleo, but taking your BG 60 or 90 minutes after you eat gives you a decent shot of knowing whether there was flower or sugar in something. If a restaurant is one I might frequent, I go there, eat something, then test my BG later. If it didn't rise much, I put that on my list of "safe" restaurants.

Medium avatar

(5136)

on April 21, 2011
at 03:09 PM

some restaurants do offer extremely Paleo friendly meals. The Bristol in Chicago offers roast bone marrow, and fries fried in duck fat. They often offer offal (say that quickly 5 times) and their meats are locally farmed in the right ways. These are the kind of restaurants I think of when someone asks about "paleo-friendly"

0
7fe8a2293e09cbb699de4510e89e8e82

(40)

on April 19, 2011
at 09:33 PM

I love Joe's Stone Crab, but I cannot guarantee their beef is grass fed. The Brazilian Steak Houses listed above are solid choices for the carne.

I would also recommend the Gage on Michigan Avenue in the Loop. With a few minor adjustments, their menu has quite a few "meat" options.

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