I have a lot of experience at the Cheesecake Factory. In high school my mom either discovered the Cheesecake Factory, or tired of our go-to restaurants. And we began visiting the Cheesecake Factory more often. I cannot remember if I ever ate at one of their restaurants before switching to the gluten-free diet. But that does not really matter here.
Since going gluten-free I have visited the Cheesecake Factory many times. All of my experiences I remember are good. If I ever get glutened at a restaurant one I would not suggest the restaurant to y’all. And two would not go back myself. Sometime I might give them a second try, but this would depend on the restaurant and previous experiences. Like I have said so many times before I can only talk about my experiences. And I want to help you feel empowered and knowledgeable when going out to eat so you do not experience anxiety in these situations.
The Cheesecake Factory Restaurants are almost identical to one another. It is a nicer style restaurant. Many people visit the restaurant in normal street clothes, but others dress a bit nicer. There have definitely been times I thought I needed to be dressed nicer. But I also regularly wear athletic shorts and t-shirts in the summer. So do whatever you feel comfortable in.
There is a bar as well as a takeout cheesecake bar. They use cloth napkins and the wait staff is all dressed in a clean and professional manner.
Seating wise they have booths and tables. Many of the locations also have a patio. At the Cheesecake Factory I visit at home in Dayton I love sitting on the patio. It is part of an outdoor mall called The Greene, and from the patio you can see the fountain feature. When it is warmer kids play in the fountain, and they also have live music in that space as well. Obviously not in the water, but that would be a sight to see.
This could be a nice date restaurant, or a restaurant a step above what you normally visit.
The Cheesecake Factory does offer gluten-free options. This includes gluten-free buns for the burgers as well as gluten-free pasta. The gluten-free options are denoted on the regular menu with a GF in a circle. In my opinion there offer quite a few menu items that can be prepared gluten-free.
I normally order a normal hamburger or cheeseburger with a gluten-free bun. Sometimes I am no fun with my food ordering. But the bun offered is pretty good in my opinion. It does not fall apart like other gluten-free products and the taste is good too.
Also the fries are fried in a dedicated fryer. So they are celiac safe, which is amazing. A hamburger on a bun with fries definitely makes me feel a bit more normal when eating out at a restaurant. Like I am in no way ashamed of my diagnosis, but it is nice to feel somewhat normal at times.
I have also tried some of the pasta dishes as well. These I am not as much of a fan of. I personally think this is a combination of the pasta used and the sauces being not great quality. But that is just my opinion. They are good, just not great. And at least in Austin where I am living there are local places that offer gluten-free pasta which is better. Oh…and I visited Italy last year, so I definitely know that gluten-free pasta can taste great. I imagine I might in the future order their pastas again, but I do not think it would be my first choice when visiting the Cheesecake Factory. I personally would need to either really be craving pasta, or really not interested in a hamburger at the time.
This is not an extensive list of the gluten-free options they offer. I just have not tried any of the other entree offerings. None of them pique my interest when I look at the menu. But they are available to you if they interest you.
Now for my favorite part of the Cheesecake Factory. Dessert! I personally would visit the restaurant just for cheesecake. And I have done that before. They used to only have one gluten-free cheesecake. The Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake. It is super rich and creamy. Even with the small serving they serve it is difficult to finish the piece in one sitting. Despite that it is so worth it. And you can always take it home with you. Recently they added another gluten-free cheesecake. It is the Coffee and Cream Chocolate Supreme. I only saw this on the menu the last time I visited a couple of weeks ago. Due to it being so late, and not knowing if they use real coffee in it I opted for my usual. Maybe next time I will give it a try and let you know.
My experiences at The Cheesecake Factory have been positive. I do not remember any time that I accidentally ingested gluten while visiting the Cheesecake Factory. It is a nicer style restaurant. Most of the wait staff is pretty knowledgeable about cross contact and the fact that some of us need to live gluten-free. The food itself is good, but not great in my opinion. I personally would rather go to a more local place to eat similar style of food if possible. But I love the Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake. I will continue to go and order this when possible.
So that’s all for now my friends. Let me know about your Cheesecake Factory experience in the comments below!