Hello to all my gluten-free friends!! There have been some requests for a tutorial on how I use my Nima Sensor so here you go!
In this video, I show you how I tested the gluten-free pad thai with shrimp while eating out at Noodles & Company.
Surprisingly, Noodles & Company has a great allergy-protocol and selection of delicious gluten-free dishes. And there is also a gluten-free guide on their website which includes the pad thai, one of my go-to dishes there. Typically, I choose to get it either without a protein or with the shrimp. In the past I’ve been told that the grilled chicken breasts are cooked on the same griddle space as the breaded chicken so that isn’t a good option for someone with Celiac Disease.
I always start my order by explaining that I have Celiac Disease and confirm that the noodles will be cooked in clean water. Then I confirm that the shrimp is not breaded and cooked in it’s own clean pan. Noodles now offers zoodles (zucchini noodles) which is another great option for their gluten-free dishes.
Side note: If you are in the Twin Cities area, I have had excellent luck with the Noodles & Company location at Knollwood off of Highway 7 in St. Louis Park!
My Tips for Testing:
- Start with clean hands. I try to use utensils as much as possible, but sometimes it’s easier to use your fingers when trying to pull off little bits of the food. And if using silverware, make sure they have been cleaned thoroughly so that no leftover gluten is stuck on.
- As you can see in the video, I mixed everything up really well before testing. I want to make sure that I am getting a good sample where all the food is well-incorporated.
- If I were testing a sandwich, I would get some of the bread along the cut line where cross-contamination with shared knives might occur.
- This dish I was testing in this tutorial had multiple elements all mixed together. For that reason, I only used one capsule. Because everything was touching, if I did get a “gluten found” reading I wouldn’t have eaten it anyway. Sometimes fancier restaurants, say a steak house, serves each dish on its own separate plate and in those instances I may have used multiple capsules. That way you can get a good idea about exactly which food may be contaminated.
- Don’t overfill the capsule because Nima can’t get an accurate reading. The directions say to use a pea sized amount of food.
- The Nima website has a whole list of other foods that need to be tested carefully, such as very hard, sticky, or liquid-y foods. Please reference the Nima website to learn more about how to get the most accurate test results!
What Would I Have Done If I Received A ‘Gluten Found’ Result?
Each restaurant and situation is different. Honestly, I don’t get the ‘gluten found’ result that often. Sometimes I will test it again just to make sure that it wasn’t a user error on my part. For this particular dish, I probably would have just brought it to a manager after the first fail. I bring my Nima Sensor to show the manager and explain what it is and what it does. Typically, they will offer to make a new dish.
If I have enough capsules with me, and depending on how much effort I want to put into the whole ordeal, I would either test the new dish or just say forget about it. Every single time I’ve had gluten found, except for one time where the staff just shrugged their shoulders at me, they have offered to refund my money if they aren’t able to get me food that I can eat. This has also been my experience at fast food restaurants. Most of the time the restaurants are extremely interested in the Nima and how it works.
Again, this is my own personal perspective and way of testing with the Nima. I encourage you to fully read all of the instructions and tips on the Nima website. Please remember that the Nima is not a be-all and end-all. It’s just an added level of security on top of all the regular precautions you take when dining out!
Please always let me know if you have questions about how I use the Nima Sensor. Or if you have additional tips you’d like to share, please do so in the comments below!
And don’t forget that I have an entire list of the restaurants and dishes in Minneapolis/St. Paul that I’ve tested with my Nima Sensor!!
You can PIN this article by clicking on the photo below.