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Gluten free baking and cooking

Article by: Allrecipes  |  Picture by: le petit haricot
Gluten free baking and cooking
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If you need to substitute wheat products and gluten in your diet we have a range of suggestions for fabulous and gluten-free baking and cooking.

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First - substitute the gluten
Wheat flour contains gluten, which keeps biscuits, cakes and pies from getting crumbly and falling apart. It is what makes baked goods have a good texture because it traps pockets of air. It you want light cakes and biscuits when cooking gluten-free, gluten substitutes must be added to any gluten-free flour mixture.

For each cup of gluten-free flour mix, add at least 1 teaspoon of gluten substitute. Here are three very good substitutes for gluten.
  • Xanthum Gum works well as a gluten substitution in yeast breads along with other baked goods. You can get it at health food shops.
  • Guar Gum is also an excellent gluten substitute and it is available in health food shops
  • Pre-gel Starch helps keep baked goods from being too crumbly. This too can be found in most health food shops.
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Gluten free flours
  • White Rice Flour
    This is an excellent basic flour for gluten-free baking. It is milled from polished white rice. Because it has such a bland flavour, it is perfect for baking, as it doesn't impart any flavours. It works well with other flours. White rice flour is available in most big supermarkets.
  • Brown Rice Flour
    This flour comes from unpolished brown rice. It has more food value because it contains bran. Use it in breads, muffins, and cookies. It's available in most big supermarkets.
  • Soy Flour
    This nutty tasting flour has a high protein and fat content. It is best when used in combination with other flours and for baking brownies or any baked goods with nuts or fruit. It's available in most big supermarkets.
  • Tapioca Flour
    This is a light, white, very smooth flour that comes from the cassava root. It makes baked goods impart a nice chewy taste. Use it in recipes where a chewy texture would be desirable. It would work nicely in bread recipes such as white bread or French bread. It is also easily combined with cornflour and soy flour. It can be purchased in a health food store.
    Gluten-free baking powder
    To make gluten-free baking powder use a ratio of 1:2 bicarb soda to cream of tartar e.g. 1 teaspoon bicarbonate soda to 2 teaspoons cream of tartar
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    Gluten free starches
    • Cornflour
      Cornflour is mostly used to thicken sauces and puddings but it can be used in combination with other flours for baking and is easily available in supermarkets. Just make sure it is pure cornflour and not mixed with any other flour.

    • Potato Starch Flour
      This is a gluten-free thickening agent that is perfect for cream-based soups and sauces. Mix a little with water first, then substitute potato starch flour for flour in your recipe but cut the amount in half. You'll find it in health food shops.
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    Make your own gluten-free flour mixes
    When you start cooking gluten-free, begin with recipes that use relatively small amounts of wheat flour like brownies or pancakes. These turn out great and the difference in taste is minimal.
    Here's some gluten-free flour mixes to make at home so you always have gluten-free flour mixes when you want to cook.
    Gluten-Free Flour Mix I
    • 1/4 cup soy flour
    • 1/4 cup tapioca flourv
    • 1/2 cup brown rice flour

    Gluten-Free Flour Mix II
    • 6 cups white rice flour
    • 2 cups potato starch
    • 1 cup tapioca flour
      Gluten free flour mixes
      You can get a couple of brands of gluten free four mixes at most big supermarkets; self raising flour as well as plain flour. They usually contain a mix of gluten free flours like soy and rice flours and some starches like potato starch or tapioca starch.
      Article provided by:
      Allrecipes

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