Arkansas: Beyond Barbecue for Dairy-Free Restaurant Customers

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Last Updated in August 2020! The wonder state is a wild place that’s just waiting to be explored. Their abundant parks include mountains, caves, rivers and hot springs. After all, it’s home to the rugged Ozarks. But you’ll need some good food to fuel your adventures. That’s why we’ve created this ever-growing guide to restaurants, bakeries, cafes, and ice cream shops in Arkansas that are friendly to dairy-free diners.

This post is based on research and reader recommendations (send yours!), that’s divided into local restaurants (first) and chains (second).

Loblolly Creamery is scooping up dairy-free & vegan ice cream and sorbets made in small batches in Little Rock, AR!

Local Arkansas Restaurants Recommended for Dairy-Free Eats

Barbecue is big in Arkansas, so you won’t have too much trouble finding BBQ and smoked meats that are naturally dairy-free. It’s often served with a side of beans and watermelon. Arkansas is also the unofficial home of soybeans in the U.S., so don’t be surprised to see edamame on the menu.

But we’ve been on the hunt for a bigger taste of Arkansas without dairy. So far, we’ve discovered the following, which go above and beyond for unique dairy-free options and/or allergy-friendly service. We’ve listed these recommendations alphabetically by city, and then by the restaurant or shop name.

⭐️ = Restaurant is either dairy-free, has a dairy-free menu, has dairy-free labels on their menu(s), or lists top allergens with menu items. (At the time of our last review.)

Fayetteville

  • Mamaka Bowls ⭐️ – If you’re concerned about shared pitchers, then head to this dairy-free smoothie and coffee shop. The blend and top and big assortment of smoothie bowls, smoothies, and coffee drinks, but have no dairy and no added sugar on the menu.
  • Hammontree’s Grilled Cheese – This might not be the “safest” place if you have cross-contamination concerns – cheese is in their name! But they offer vegan cheese, sourdough bread, and can even grill your sandwich in hemp oil. They also have a big range of veggies, from grilled zucchini to poblano peppers to artichokes, to complement your dairy-free grilled cheese. Sides include edamame hummus dip and salads that can be made dairy free.

Little Rock

  • Dempsey Bakery – Several readers have written in to profess their love for this gluten-free, soy-free, nut-free bakery. They are not completely dairy-free, but they bake many items without milk. This includes cinnamon rolls, cupcakes, breads, and more. They also have a good selection of egg-free and vegan items. And yes, they do bake custom cakes, including wedding cakes.
  • Izzy’s – This health-oriented diner offers a vegan menu with an impressive selection of salads, tamales, and other entrees. They can also make several more omnivorous dishes without dairy.
  • Loblolly Creamery ⭐️ – This ice cream shop was recommended by reader Cynthia. It’s located in a unique stretch of town, and the staff churns out delicious artisan ice cream with many vegan options. They also offer gluten-free, vegan waffle cones, vegan shakes, and several dairy-free toppings, which are labeled right on the menu. In fact, they note top allergens next to each ice cream flavor.

Most Popular Chains in Arkansas for Dairy-Free Diners

There are many more chains in this state, but these are the ones we recommend most for dairy-free options.

This Guide is Continuously Updated with Recommendations

We welcome you to recommend other dairy-free friendly restaurants. Leave a comment or contact us and tell us why you like a certain restaurant. Restaurant owners and employees are also invited to reach out and let us know how you welcome dairy-free customers.

Please kindly let us know in the comments if any of these restaurants close. We want to keep this list current for you, but aren’t always notified when a restaurant closes. Let us know and we will quickly update!

This Guide is for Informational Purposes Only

Menus, ingredients, kitchen procedures, management, and restaurants are subject to change at any time. Always read the menu and discuss your dietary needs with the staff before ordering. Make sure that they can accommodate your situation.

There is always a risk for potential cross-contamination of allergens in any commercial kitchen. If cross-contamination is an issue for you, always speak with the manager to ensure that your meal can be safely prepared. Listings here do not guarantee that a restaurant is safe enough for your individual needs. Only you can make that decision.

For More Dairy-Free Guidance, Get Go Dairy Free!

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About Author

Alisa is the founder of GoDairyFree.org, Food Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living, and the new cookbook, Eat Dairy Free: Your Essential Cookbook for Everyday Meals, Snacks, and Sweets. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.

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