Food Allergies & Sensitivities


We take your dietary needs seriously and we understand that your health and safety are most important to a successful college experience. Our goal is to provide students with the tools and support you need to be active in the management of their food allergy or food-related medical condition while on campus. 

We work closely with the medical professionals at Health Services to provide students with complicated medical nutrition needs support and guidance on how to safely navigate food choices on campus.

Our  Staff & Food Allergy Training 

Our Food Service employees are provided annual Food Allergen and Cross-Contact training provided by our dietitian.  Dedicated “purple” equipment and utensils are utilized in the preparation of allergen-friendly menu items at food stations.  Please be aware that our kitchens and dining facilities are not ALLERGY-FREE as we do not have dedicated kitchen areas where exclusive production of allergen-free foods are prepared.

We Need to Know about You… The Earlier the Better!

Please let us know about your food allergy, intolerance or celiac disease before you come to New Student Orientation or move onto campus. We will arrange a special tour so you can meet our staff and understand what options are available to you at our facilities. We look forward to working with you! We encouraged you to notify Health Services and your Residence Hall Assistant as well of your requirement for allergen-free foods.  

If you a visitor dining with us, please speak with your server or the manager on duty. 

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If you have been diagnosed with a food allergy or have a significant food intolerance and will be dining in our facilities, please reach out to Karen Orabona, Registered Dietitian so we can discuss options that meet your needs.

Allergens on the Service Line

Our two resident dining halls feature multiple food stations in a mostly self-serve environment.  We understand that many of our guests have specialized concerns including food allergies, intolerances, or Celiac disease we have several provisions in place to address potential cross-contamination:

  • Homestyle stations at both Butterfield and Mainfare Dining Halls offer daily entrees and sides options that do not contain allergens.
  • Gluten-Free options are available in all dining halls and retail locations.  Certified gluten-free Udi’s products are available in our dining hall’s Gluten-Free Pantry area and are available upon request including: bread, pasta, bagels, wraps, muffins, hamburger buns, roll, pizza shell, waffles, oatmeal, cookies, and brownies.
  • Alternative Meals:  Students with a severe food allergy/intolerance who are concerned with the potential for cross-contact may be eligible to “order ahead” from either dining hall.  Students requiring this service will receive a hot meal that has been cooked separately on dedicated equipment by trained culinary staff.
  • Allergen-Friendly Pantries in the Dining Halls: Both Mainfare and Butterfield dining halls have an allergen-friendly pantry where you can access a variety of gluten-free and dairy-free foods.  A dedicated refrigerator/freezer, toaster, and microwave in addition to plates and utensils are available to minimize cross-contact in the preparation of your safe food choice. Many of these foods are individually packaged for your safety.  Access to the Allergen-friendly Pantry is not restricted, but is available to those students with food allergies and/or intolerances. It is important that everyone using the pantry understand and respect the needs of all students using the shared space. 
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NetNutrition: Our searchable menus online

This exciting new tool provides nutritional information, identifies 9 major allergens, and various lifestyle choices you help you navigate our extensive menu.

But wait, what if there are menu changes or substitutions?

While ingredients are listed on the website menu, substitutions may be made at any time for various reasons. We make every effort to identify these changes at the service line. If an advertised item is not present, or you see a “Chef’s Choice” label on an item, please ask your server or to speak with a manager on duty.

Be Proactive!


  • Notify URI Dining Services and Disability Student Services of your allergy or sensitivity
  • Schedule a meeting with our Registered Dietitian to develop a plan so you can navigate the dining halls
  • Be proficient in the self-management of your food allergy(ies)
  • Avoid foods to which you are allergic
  • Recognize the symptoms of an allergic reaction
  • Know how and when to tell someone you might be having an allergy-related problem
  • Know how to properly use prescribed medications to treat an allergic reaction
  • If you have been prescribed epinephrine or other allergy-related medications, carry them with you at all times
  • Consider informing friends you normally dine with and your RA about your medical needs in case of emergency
  • Carry emergency contact information with you





For your safety, it is the customer’s obligation to inform the server about any food allergies.
University of Rhode Island Dining Services makes every attempt to identify ingredients that may cause allergic reactions for those with food allergies, and every effort is made to instruct our food production staff on the severity of food allergies.  While we make every effort to identify allergen information, there are elements beyond our control. Please be aware that there is always a risk of cross-contact, and a possibility that manufacturers of the commercial foods we use could change the formulation at any time, without notice.  Customers with food allergies need to be aware of this risk. We will provide recipe ingredient information, recipe preparation, and product label information directly to the student so that he/she is able to make his/her own decision regarding to ear a menu item or not. Students with food allergies are encouraged to contact URI Dining Services dietitian for additional information and/or support.
To help our customers with food allergies and/or intolerance to choose safely, the “Big-9” allergens (milk, eggs, fish, shellfish, peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, sesame and soy) are listed on the menu signage located in each dining hall and on the URI Dining Services mobile app. Also identified are menu items that are vegetarian, vegan or locally sourced.
Please note that the advisory labeling (i.e., precautionary statements such as “may contain,” “processed in facility that also processes,” or “made on equipment with”) by manufacturers is not being considered for the labeling of allergens on our menus. If statements are made on the packaging, we will include them at the end of the ingredient list.