Outback Steakhouse, the Best Travel Go-To for Keto, Carnivore and Gluten-Free Lifestyles
Dining out is a treat for those of us who are Keto or Carnivore AND have Celiac’s. Knowing a place that checks all the boxes on a consistent basis is very reassuring. Now we’re on the road. While we’d love to stop at some of the small artesian restaurants we’ve found in the tour guides, online or just passing by, it’s hard to know with 100% certainty if the food served will be gluten-free. I often use find me gluten free for the Celiac’s portion of my life. Gluten-free does not mean options will translate to Keto or Carnivore. One chain we found that consistently delivers a Keto, Carnivore and gluten-free faire is Outback Steakhouse.
Checking the Boxes
Firstly, a restaurant has to do an excellent job at keeping my food gluten-free even though the best that is promised is gluten friendly. Gluten friendly means that the restaurant will take best efforts to make sure the food is gluten-free but makes no promises. In some restaurants, gluten friendly may also mean the food is naturally gluten-free but is prepared on surfaces that are also used to prepare gluten containing products.
Next, the staff understand what gluten-free means. How many of us have announced we need to be gluten-free only to have the wait staff look quizzically at us and state, “That’s cheese, right?” In some restaurants, the manager or wait staff follow gluten-free orders through various kitchen stations to catch any cross-contamination. This attention to detail is reassuring. I still take a gluten enzyme prophylactically. Depending on the hit, this just maybe enough to help my body get through it.
It’s easy to crave a good steak after a day of travel. First we start looking for the Outback Steakhouse and then we look for a place to stay. We order S. Pellegrino to start, a house side salad or Caesar side salad with no croutons or cheese for our first side, then a 10 oz. Ribeye as the entrée with another small salad as a second side. This is oh so good and never gets old.
The last time at Outback, we opted to dine Keto. I started with a Caesar side salad before my entrée. As I write this, I realize that while my salad had no gluten, the prepared Caesar dressing likely contained sugar and soy. At dinner, I chose a side garden salad with balsamic vinaigrette. Again, assume there is some sugar and soy in prepared dressing. Next time I am going to opt for regular vinegar and oil for my salads. For those that are highly sensitive to sugar and are working to decrease inflammation and insulin resistance in their bodies, vinegar and oil is a better option. Double check what kind of oil is brought to the table. Olive oil is great. The caveat here is that many olive oils are blends of olive with vegetable oils. Stay away of the blended oils if you can.
And then there are the Outback rewards!
This is my first dining hack. Sign-up for Dine Rewards before you go to Outback. You can also ask the wait staff to sign you up or scan the QR code on the coaster the wait staff put under your beverage. Spend at least $20 on food and non-alcoholic beverages excluding gift cards and that visit counts towards your Dine Rewards offer. Every 4th visit you receive 50% off up to $20. And if your 50% off dinner is still over $20, it also counts as a visit. That is double dipping! Other restaurants that count towards Dine Rewards are Carrabba’s and Bonefish. Let your wait staff know you have Dine Rewards when you first meet them. The phone number you entered when signing up is all you need.
My second dining hack is the AARP card. AARP members save 10% at Outback Steakhouse. If you are 50 and older, apply for your AARP card. Membership is only $12 a year. In 2-3 visits to Outback, you will have earned enough in discounts to offset your membership. On your 4th visit, you may only use one offer, either Dine Rewards or AARP. Dining hack number three, choose the 50% off.
Some might consider our Outback Steakhouse meal more dirty Keto than clean because of the processed dressings. What it comes down to is when traveling or eating out, just do the best you can while getting a great meal and rewards.