Special Dietary Needs

Resources for Students with Dietary Restrictions

Helpful Tools

For all special diets, please see the EatSmart website or the Illinois App to filter menu items by allergen or food preference. For additional accommodations, please see below.

Inclusive Solutions

If you are a meal plan holder and your allergy or intolerance is severe in nature or you are concerned about cross-contact, you can enroll in the Inclusive Solutions program. This service provides an mobile app for students to order customizable entrees, sides, and desserts prior to arriving in the dining hall. This system works for any dining hall during their normal operating hours. The meals are prepared in a separate allergy-friendly area that has special cleaning and preparation protocols and is staffed only by the Dining Allergy Team. All dining services staff receive allergy training; however, each member of our Dining Allergy Team has completed additional training through the MenuTrinfo AllerTrain program and has passed an examination. For more information, visit http://www.menutrinfo.com.

To obtain the Inclusive Solutions service, you must apply for services at http://disability.illinois.edu/applying-services to register your allergy with Disability Resources and Educational Services (DRES). You must have a signed note from your doctor (MD or OD only) on their letterhead and include your name, date of birth, diagnosis, diet required, and if cross-contact is a consideration/concern.


We serve a vegan or vegetarian entrée and side at each dining hall at every meal. Additionally, we serve vegan and vegetarian Good2Go meals at dining retail locations daily. LAR/Allen Dining Hall has vegan/vegetarian specialty restaurant called Field of Greens which serves lunch and dinner during the week. Ikenberry Dining Center has the Soytainly station which features a vegan entrée, side, salad, legume, grain, and dessert daily for lunch and dinner. Please use EatSmart or the Dining App and use the vegan or vegetarian filter to search all options in all dining locations.  

Our Dining Services program was recognized with a grade of A+ in peta2's Vegan Report Card. Only 192 schools (13%) out of the 1510 schools graded received a score of A+. This grade reflects our effort to go above and beyond to provide all students with exceptional vegan food. Only four schools in the state of Illinois received an A+ (7%) and the average score for all 56 schools in Illinois was a C.

Gluten-Free Corner

Each dining hall has gluten-free products for any student to use and is stocked with the following gluten-free items and some vegan gluten-free items:

  • Udi’s white sandwich bread
  • Udi’s whole grain bread
  • Udi’s hamburger and hot dog buns
  • Udi’s plain and cinnamon raisin bagels
  • Udi’s cookies, muffins, and brownies
  • EnerG bread (vegan, gluten-free)
  • Various Enjoy Life products
  • Rice Chex, Lucky Charms, Honey Nut Cheerios

Additionally, various gluten-free items can be found in dining retail locations. Please ask a manager if you are trying to locate a specific item or would like to make a recommendation for a specific item to be stocked.

Vegan Corner

Each dining hall has the following vegan items located in either the salad bar and in a dedicated refrigerator:
  • Bragg’s liquid amino acids
  • Nutritional yeast
  • Ground flaxseed
  • Just Mayo vegan mayonnaise
  • Tofurkey oven-roasted deli slices
  • Yves meatless deli ham slices
  • Tofutti cream cheese
  • Tofutti American cheese slices
  • Tofutti mozarella cheese slices
  • Daiya vegan yogurt
  • Silk almond milk (original, vanilla)
  • Rice Dream rice milk (original, vanilla)
  • Silk soy milk (vanilla, chocolate)
  • Earth Balance vegan, soy-free buttery spread
Please ask a manager if you are trying to locate a specific item or would like to make a recommendation for a specific item to be stocked.


Kosher meals are served in Allen Hall dining room in the Lincoln Avenue Dining Hall (LAR), 1005 W. Gregory Dr., Urbana, Sunday–Thursday from 4:45 to 6:15 p.m. during the academic year while the dining halls are in operation. These Kosher meals are under the certification of Rabbi Dovid Tiechtel of Illini Chabad and is in partnership with Illini Chabad. In addition, Kosher shelf-stable or frozen meals are available upon request in all dining halls. Kosher shelf-stable meals as well as other kosher products are available for purchase in the dining retail locations 57-North in the SDRP, Chomps at ISR, and Penn Station in PAR. Packaged kosher meals that were prepared in the Kosher Kitchen are also available for purchase in the Illini Union Quad Shop. 

For more information on the availability of Kosher meals in the area please visit: Chabad at http://www.jewishillini.org.


Residents with a meal plan who choose not to dine in the dining halls during Passover must email their request to housing@illinois.edu to be reimbursed the raw food cost for meals missed at the rate of $2.68 per breakfast, $2.86 per lunch, and $4.04 per dinner. Residents requesting this credit option should see the raw food cost credit posted on their Student Account Receivable (SAR) statement/e-bill. Students on the 6 Classic meal plan will receive a maximum of 6 dinner credits.


Residents can also be reimbursed for the raw food cost of lunch and dinner meals missed during Ramadan by emailing their request to housing@illinois.edu. It is the student's responsibility to track their meal plan and not eat from sunrise to sunset. The raw food cost credit amount is $2.86 per lunch and $4.04 per dinner. Assuming a student does not eat lunch or dinner meals during Ramadan, they will receive a maximum of 7 lunch and 7 dinner credits per week during each week of Ramadan. Residents requesting this credit option should see the raw food cost credit posted on their Student Account Receivable (SAR) statement/e-bill. Students on the 6 Classic plan will receive a maximum of 6 dinner credits. Residents observing Ramadan may elect to prepare sack meals for breakfast and/or lunch instead of a food-cost reimbursement. To do so, please notify a supervisor as you enter the dining room. Your ID number will be entered into the access system to deduct your carry-out meal from your meal plan.  One container will be provided each for cold and hot food items. To-go meals taken by students who observe Ramadan are the student's responsibility to keep the food according to food safety guidelines: 40˚F or below for cold food and 165˚F or above for hot food. 

Additional Questions?

Contact Housing Dietitian Melissa Schumacher, MS, RDN, LDN at nutrition@housing.illinois.edu