Information for students with
& Special Diets
UC Santa Cruz Dining is committed to helping you get the nutrition you need to succeed.
Whether you have a food allergy, a religious restriction, a vegan/vegetarian diet, or simply need assistance with your food selections, we can provide the resources to help you make delicious choices, safely and easily.
We work with students who have food allergies or intolerances, and other special dietary needs, to make sure they get the most from their dining experience. We encourage students to talk with our dining hall managers about specific dietary restrictions, and we work closely with the Student Health Center to develop meals for restricted diets.
A food allergy is defined as a disorder of the body’s immune system in response to specific food proteins. Food allergy symptoms can range in severity from the discomfort associated with mild lactose intolerance to the occasionally fatal anaphylaxis associated with some nut allergies. UC Santa Cruz identifies foods that contain the most common allergens on our online menus and on signs in the dining halls. Although we do our best to meet the needs of students with food allergies, our facilities are not gluten-free or allergen-free. Foods prepared in our facilities are at risk of coming in contact with ingredients that may be allergens.
or Tree Nuts
Religious Dietary Restrictions
Certain religious practices restrict dietary intake and necessitate close attention to recipe ingredients. The most commonly restricted foods are certain types of meat, fish, and dairy. We use a comprehensive food labeling system to help guests identify the use of such foods.
For those who choose a vegetarian or vegan diet, UC Santa Cruz Dining offers a variety of options. There are daily selections for both vegetarian diets (no meat or fish) and vegan diets (no animal products of any kind).
Tips for students with food allergies or special diets
Meet with a dining hall manager
Dining hall managers are knowledgeable about the options available and can show you which foods will work with your diet.
Consult the online menu
The online “allergen filter” can show you the menu items that do or do not contain specific allergens, and lets you know ahead of time which dining hall will be featuring those foods.
Meet with the dietitian at the Student Health Center
The dietitian is aware of food options in the dining halls and can help you understand your options based on recommendations from your doctor/allergist. Schedule an appointment by calling (831) 459-2500.
Nutrition and Wellness