What is safe to order in restaurant?


I'm meeting some people tonight who insisted on dinner in a local restaurant. This is a place where I often meet my Dad for a drink....but I don't eat there other than chicken wings. They have things on the menu with peanut sauce, pesto, etc.

What do you order when you're unsure of a place? Salad with no dressing? Baked potato? I guess if nothing else I can have chicken wings for dinner! TIA for any advice. Cheers, Adele

On Apr 2, 2005

If I am unsure of what to order at a restaurant I call ahead of time or go in and speak to the chef. I would never consider any item safe unless you speak to the person/people preparing the item. You need to question about ingredients, oils used in preparation and items such as bowls, utensils used in preparation. We try to stick w/ basic items for our son like plain pasta and burgers.

On Apr 2, 2005

Hi Robinlp, Thanks for your input. I talked to the manager of the restaurant prior to going there. He was the one that informed me of the pesto and peanut sauce. I made sure the waitress knew of my PN allergy then just ordered a green salad with oil and vinegar. If they had baked potato on the menu I would have ordered one...with just butter.....but they didn't. It seems a baked potato would be safe because it's in a skin that you don't have to eat, so chances of contamination are slim. Boring but a reasonably safe dinner!

When you order a burger. does your son have just the meat without the bun? Do you order plain pasta without sauce? Do you worry about the ingredients in the pasta itself or do you consider it relatively safe? Sorry for all the questions. Thanks for your help.

On Apr 3, 2005

Actually, salads are frequently an area of cross contamination. Nuts are often used on salads and therefore are kept with salad ingredients. I would imagine that this would depend on the restaurant. Make sure to ask about this when ordering.

On Apr 3, 2005

Salads can be a major source of cross contamination. Many restaurants use nuts on some of their salads and therefore keep them in the same prep area. Be sure to check with the restaurant on their practices regarding this before assuming that a salad is safe.

On Apr 3, 2005

We are now facing this with our son

From our experience things go best if we order something fresh that that rest. has to prepare 100%. Broiled chicken, hamberger, veg's, potatoes, fries etc...

But whenever we inquire about a item such as pastas, saused items, breaded items these things all seem to be perpared else where & then just warmed to serve etc.... (risk for cross containination, if not labeled for whats in the org. facility)

Hope that helps

[This message has been edited by kkeene (edited April 03, 2005).]

On Apr 4, 2005

It depends on the place. We have a few places that we frequent that we are comfortable with.

Seeing that my son's tastes might be a slightly different that yours, but here is goes: :P

Cheeseburger, fries (provided they do not use peanut oil) Grilled cheese, fries Pizza (do not use peanut oil in sauce, peanut flour in the bread and one of the places he makes his own) Side garden salad/veggies fruit platters or cups Mac and cheese (specifically they use the kraft brand) Cheese sticks Chicken tenders

No desserts or ice creams ever.

But again, we are familar with the owners, they with us and my son's allergy. In fact they don't use nuts anywhere but the desserts and these are catered in from a local bakery.

Still we carry our epipen with us and cell phone in case.

On Apr 4, 2005

I do what Robinlp does and always call ahead or talk to the chef on the night when eating out. I've learned to not eat from the salad bar too. Even when I was told that everything on there was fine, I ended up up going to hospital by ambulance from one tiny bite of vegetables in a cheese sauce from the salad bar. So I'd suggest talking to the chef and only eat what they prepare for you, bypassing the salad/vege bar.


On Apr 5, 2005

Oops! I guess I thought that my first post didn't go through so I wrote it over (different wording). Sorry for the duplicate!