Here are our top Gluten-Free baking tips - we hope they'll help you make the most of your gluten-free recipes! Feel free to add your tips to the bottom of this list:
Keep Out the Grit!
Use finely ground flours (unless you're baking with cornmeal or want a specific texture) and try baker's sugar (a finely ground sugar used for baking.) Don't want to buy baker's sugar? Give regular, brown or coconut sugar a spin through the food processor before using it.
Use Gluten-Free Flour Blends
Gluten-free baked goods generally come out better when you use a blend of flours. Blend your own or find a commercial blend you like. We recommend avoiding bean, chickpea, or other flours with a strong flavor sparingly in baked goods. (Like, never. Your brownies should not taste like hummus.)
Cream the Fat with the Sugar First
Unless your recipe prevents it, we recommend creaming your sugar or sweetener with your fats (butter, shortening, oil, etc.) This will produce lighter, fluffier baked goods.
Remember the Salt & Flavorings!
Salt enhances flavor, and it also provides structure to gluten-free doughs and batters. Flavoring agents, like extracts or herbs, are a key component in achieving a pleasant-tasting product. When converting a conventional recipe to gluten-free, we usually increase the amount of extract used by at least 50%. Tip: we also sometimes increase the baking powder or yeast by about 25%.
Blend Salt with Other Dry Ingredients
Salt is necessary, but it can have some tricky reactions with yeast & other ingredients. Mix your salt into the other dry ingredients thoroughly before adding to wet mixes for best results.
Take Care of Your Products
Check the shelf life of gums, flavorings, flours, yeast, baking powder and other baking supplies to be sure they're at their best BEFORE you use them. Store your goods at the proper temperature in tightly sealed containers.
Use Xanthan or Guar Gum or other Baking Binders
We get so many emails from people who attempt to make their favorite bread or dessert gluten-free and don't add binding agents! This is a necessary step in gluten-free baking unless you are using a recipe that is specifically formulated without gums. You can follow the basic guide for using baking binders on our site for help. Note: guar gum can act like a laxative in certain people, so you may want to start with xanthan if that's an issue. Or, just use my gum-free baking binder recipe.
Taste for Flavor AND Texture
If you've made a baked good that you love, GREAT! Family Favorite! If not, taste your finished baked goods for texture and flavor, and decide what you don't like about what you've made. Does it need a bit more time in the oven? Are the flavors off, or is it too crumbly or dense? It's much easier to adjust a recipe when you know what the problem is!
Happy Gluten-Free Baking Everyone.
XO - KC