Olivia’s Organic a haven for gluten- and dairy-free comfort food 

29October 2020

There’s now another place to recommend to those looking for dairy-free, gluten-free and allergy-friendly options — Olivia’s Organic Cafe, the farm-to-table eatery using a 100 percent gluten-free, dairy-free and peanut-free kitchen in Burnsville.

Olivia’s Organic Cafe in Burnsville. (Courtesy of Olivia’s Organic)

And Olivia’s doesn’t just fill a niche. In fact, it’s something the whole family can love. The menu is comfort food that seems to have something for everyone, dietary restrictions and food allergies or not.

Breakfast items including egg dishes, pancakes, waffles and cinnamon rolls. The menu also has soups, salads and sandwiches. Then there are pastries and desserts such as cinnamon rolls, muffin, cookies and brownies. There’s also ice cream on the menu. Drink offerings include coffees, teas, smoothies, kombucha, beer and wine.

Here, dairy- and gluten-free options don’t play second fiddle. Rather, all the menu items are dairy- and gluten-free as a premise. Non-dairy milk, vegan cheese, vegan butter and coconut whip are automatically integrated into composing a dish. How refreshing that must be for someone who usually has to ask to hold the dairy or to replace the bun with a gluten-free one.

Still, there are dairy and gluten options, but you’ll have to ask for those to be swapped or added to your order, such as your more standard milk, cheese, butter, whipped cream and ice cream with dairy.

Of the dishes sampled, the most impressive of the breads was the execution of the homemade English muffin that starred in the Bacon Eggs Benedict ($18.50). The dish was delicious if not for delivering a gluten-free English muffin that was airy (at last!) and worthy of some buzz, then for the poached eggs cooked just right and the hollandaise sauce and nitrate-free bacon that came with it.

The Cinnamon Roll at Olivia’s Organic Cafe in Burnsville. (Courtesy of Olivia’s Organic)

For pastries, not to be missed are the cinnamon rolls ($7 apiece) that the kitchen has also cracked the gluten-free code on by concocting a roll with a chewy and gooey texture. Washing it down with a latte is a great way to go.

There’s also a sandwich menu, in which a Crispy Chicken Sandwich ($21) is worth a try. It’s nice that the organic chicken comes with a nice crisp coating, thanks to a potato chip batter, and it was fun trying the house-made brioche bun that came with it.

Olivia’s is named after one of owner Melanie Vejdani’s daughters who is gluten-free for health reasons. “I saw the struggles of her growing up,” said Vejdani who follows a gluten-free and dairy-free diet herself. “I don’t want people with gluten-free or dairy-free needs to have to go to a different bakery or ice cream counter. “

Olivia’s originally opened last fall with a full-service model. But business was so busy from the get-go and because they wanted to keep up with the pace and better serve customers, Vejdani and head chef/daughter Maria Adrian closed to regroup, editing the menu and changing the service model to order-at-the-counter and online orders. Then COVID-19 happened, so the reopening was postponed. Just recently, the spot on the corner of Highway 13 and Cliff Road, reopened with the planned changes.

Owner Melanie Vejdani and Chef Maria Adrian of Olivia’s Organic Cafe in Burnsville, Aug. 28, 2020 (Nancy Ngo / Pioneer Press)

It was a smart move. Amid the pandemic, it’s nice to have both options of casual dine-in where you can order at the counter and come and go on your own timeline as well as have the alternative for ordering online for takeout.

During two visits here, once doing patio seating and the second takeout, both operations run in a smooth and timely manner. If it’s the consistency you want, Olivia’s has it.

In addition to being reliable, Olivia’s is still up for an adventure and seems to constantly have something brewing. Next up: fall pies with, of course, a gluten-free crust. Pumpkin is already being offered. Look for other varieties in the near future.

Olivia’s Organic Cafe: Current hours are from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. 11849, Millpond Ave., Burnsville; 952-346-8800; oliviasorganiccafe.com

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