Going gluten free

Chartwells adapts to new diets

By on September 20, 2012
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Chartwells introduced its new addition of Au Bon Pain, but also introduced its new diet accommodations for students with food allergies.

Jorie McLeod | The Quinnipiac Chronicle

The most common diet accommodations Chartwells had to make was for allergies to gluten, lactose and nuts, according to Leean Spalding, the associate director of dining services, To accommodate the students, Chartwells has incorporated many different foods into its menus.

Chartwells offers gluten-free substitutions at the Deli, Yan Can Cook and 2mato, Spalding said. There is also vegan cheese at 2mato, Deli and BYOB. Chartwells now offers microwaveable Halal meals and Halal grilled chicken at the BYOB Grill. There is also soy milk, lactaid and dairy-free cheese for those who are lactose intolerant.

Some of the gluten-free available food options include wraps, muffins, teriyaki chicken, chicken fingers and nuggets, and chicken pot pie.

Au Bon Pain also has four gluten-free soups available. The healthy options on the new menu caught the eye of freshman Rachel Nilan.

“Though I am not on a special diet or dietary restriction, I definitely want to try the new food options at Au Bon Pain,” Nilan said.

Chartwells has been working on accommodating its menu for students with special diets for a while, Director of Dining Services Joseph Tobin said.

“It has been in our business plan the past few years to increase our gluten-free offerings,” Tobin said. “Last year, we started baking our own gluten-free bread on campus.”

Junior Erica Cirilli said Chartwells’ gluten-free options are better this year than last year.

“Last year, Chartwells did not have an entire section dedicated to gluten-free diets, nor did they have many options for those students,” Cirilli said. “This year, however, they have replaced a refrigerated section that used to contain drinks with a large amount of gluten-free options.”

Those with dietary restrictions may meet with Spalding, who has her Bachelor of Science degree in Human Food and Nutrition. Spalding then reviews their special dietary needs. If a student has a special food request, Chartwells will attempt to add it to the menu, according to Tobin.

Spalding has met with 10 students this semester to go over their special diets and dietary restrictions.

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