How to whip-up gluten-free baking like it’s a piece of cake! ….Which it literally could be.

In my case this time it was banana muffins. Banana apple muffins of the supremely delicious variety (we don’t make any other variety than supremely delicious).

To make delicious gluten-free goods, you don’t need a special gluten-free recipe. You can take any recipe you like and switch the flours to make it gluten-free.

There’s a lot of gluten in wheat, the most commonly used grain, and this is partly why it is so commonly used: gluten is sticky and helps the food hold together. This is also one of the reasons it causes so many health problems: gluten is sticky, and it’s like glue in your intestines! Because gluten-free grains are therefore not so sticky, foods tend to be crumbly if made with a single gluten-free flour. I always get the best results when I blend 3 different types of flour together. You can try it with just 2 different kinds, or even 4 if you want… just play!

So if a recipe calls for 3 cups of all-purpose flour, instead try something like 1 cup brown rice flour, 1 cup chickpea flour and 1 cup quinoa flour. Easy peasy!

Here are some gluten-free flour options, with their relative densities listed in brackets after each:

  • Quinoa (light)
  • Brown rice (light)
  • Millet (light)
  • Amaranth (light)
  • Chickpea (medium)
  • Fava bean (medium)
  • Almond (medium-heavy)
  • Flax (medium-heavy)
  • Sunflower (medium-heavy)
  • Buckwheat (heavy) *note: this is a grain with a name that confuses many, and is actually NOT related to wheat
  • Hemp (heavy)
  • Coconut (very heavy – absorbs a lot of moisture)

I wrote “light” or “heavy” after each one because if you combine 3 heavy flours, you will end up with a very dense, heavy baked good. Unless I specifically want to make something very light, I like to use an approximate balance of light and heavy flours. Coconut flour is best used about 2 or 3 tbsp at a time as it absorbs so much liquid. In my favourite muffin recipe which calls for 3 cups of flour, I typically use 1 cup buckwheat, 1 cup millet, and 1 cup either brown rice or amaranth.

Another great tip: throw whole grain “old-fashioned” oat flakes in a coffee grinder for fresh, more nutritious flour. Oats are gluten-free yet are frequently contaminated with gluten. This is not a problem for most people who avoid gluten, but listen to your gut. Unless you have a true gluten intolerance (celiac) or allergy, oat flour is worth a try.

Hopefully that’s enough information to help you tweak the favourite recipes that you probably already have. It’s a way to make baked goods a little better for you whether you are gluten-sensitive or not.

Go bananas!!

Coconutz Candace

candace -

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