Demand for gluten-free menu items has been growing in recent years and Bell’ Italia is answering the call.

The Ahwatukee restaurant first began serving a gluten-free pizza five years ago, but today they’ve expanded their gluten-free options to include penne and spaghetti pasta, garlic bread, bruschetta, even canollis and tiramisu. They also carry gluten-free flour, which they can be used as a substitute in sauces.

“There seems to be a very high demand for gluten free,” said Paola Caputo, co-owner of Bell’ Italia. “We started getting a lot of customers asking for it… We go out of our way to please the customer. If we have to do something different we figure out a way.”

Caputo herself is gluten free, not for any medical reason but just because she said it makes her feel better.

“I have a very sensitive stomach,” she said. “I’ve noticed with the gluten free I do feel better. I digest my food better, and don’t get all the bloating and craziness that people get.”

Bell’ Italia has been in business for 12 years. Caputo says part of the secret to their success is their ability to adapt their recipes to meet any need.

On Mother’s Day Bell’ Italia will be opening early for lunch at noon and will be giving a $12 gift card to each table that spends $50 or more. For more information on Bell’ Italia, visit www.bellitaliapizzeria.com or call (480) 893-1233.

• Contact writer: (480) 898-7914 or ahurtado@ahwatukee.com.

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