Winning Gluten-Free Bread Recipes
Get baking! Here's a host of bread recipes—five in all, plus a flour blend—to get you started.
[Updated Oct. 9, 2015]
As the owner of a gluten-free, dairy-free bakery, the request I hear most from new customers is for a tasty gluten-free bread like they once enjoyed—one with texture, taste and flexibility. A loaf that doesn’t immediately crumble at the touch of a knife.
Cakes and cookies are wonderful treats but when someone is diagnosed with gluten sensitivity, the first thought is bound to be: How will I survive without bread? I have celiac disease, so I speak from experience.
Called the staff of life, bread is a significant part of the American diet. It’s the go-to food, a staple on the table. Toast for breakfast. Sandwich for lunch. Croutons on your salad. Rolls with your dinner.
When I first tried to re-create bread without the gluten, my attempts fell far short. I pulled many sad disappointments out of the oven. I had baked homemade bread for years, making dinner rolls from scratch and savoring each bite. For me, nothing quite satisfies like a warm loaf of fresh bread on a cold winter day.
What I ultimately learned in the process of creating gluten-free bread was to forget everything I previously knew about bread baking. Getting the hang of this new way of doing things took some time. But now, in retrospect, I firmly believe that it’s actually easier to make gluten-free bread than the conventional variety. It takes less time, there is no kneading, and there’s no second rise.
These bread recipes offer the delicious flavor, moist texture and soft flexibility you love about bread—without the gluten, dairy and cane sugar. Any way you slice it, your bread-less days are over.
Champion Sandwich Bread
MAKES 2 LOAVES
Light in texture, this is the perfect everyday bread for breakfast and sandwiches. This recipe takes only a few minutes to put together in a stand mixer. For maximum yeast rise, have all ingredients at room temperature.
4 cups Brown Rice Flour Blend
1 tablespoon xanthan gum
1 tablespoon gluten-free egg replacer
2 teaspoons salt
½ cup powdered milk or nondairy milk powder substitute
1 package (2¼ teaspoons) active dry yeast
3 large eggs
¼ cup butter, margarine or Spectrum organic shortening
2 teaspoons cider vinegar
⅓ cup honey or agave nectar
2 cups warm water (110 to 115 degrees)
1. Grease and flour two 8-inch bread pans.
2. Mix dry ingredients together in a medium-size bowl. Set aside.
3. Place eggs, butter, vinegar and honey in the mixing bowl of a stand mixer. With the paddle attachment, mix ingredients together for about 30 seconds. The butter (or magarine or shortening) will be chunky.
4. Add half the dry ingredients to the wet mixture. Mix just until blended. Add remaining dry ingredients and mix for approximately 30 seconds, until blended.
5. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add warm water until well absorbed. Turn the mixer to medium-high speed and beat for 4 minutes. Bread dough should resemble cake batter.
6. Spoon the dough into prepared pans. Set aside in a warm place to rise, about 50 to 60 minutes. While dough rises, preheat oven to 375 degrees.
7. Place pans in preheated oven on middle rack and bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until bread's internal temperature reaches 200 degrees with an instant-read thermometer.
8. Let bread cool in pans for 10 minutes. Then remove loaves from pans and place on a rack to cool.
Each serving contains 119 calories, 3g total fat, 2g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 29mg cholesterol, 185mg sodium, 21g carbohydrate, 1g fiber, 0g protein.
TIP: Gluten-free egg replacer is available from Ener-G Foods (ener-g.com).
VARIATIONS: For Sesame Bread, add 1 tablespoon sesame seeds to the batter after dough has mixed for 4 minutes. Then blend an additional 30 seconds. Spoon dough into prepared pans. Whisk an egg white in a small bowl with a fork. With a pastry brush, brush the top of each loaf with egg white and sprinkle with additional sesame seeds. Spoon batter into loaf pans and bake as directed.
For Granola Bread, add 1½ cups seeds, dried fruit and/or nuts to the batter after the dough has been mixed for 4 minutes. Blend an additional minute to combine. Spoon batter into loaf pans and bake as directed.
Brown Rice Flour Blend
MAKES 4 CUPS
1⅓ cups brown rice flour, preferably super-fine grind
1⅓ cups tapioca flour/starch
1⅓ cups cornstarch
1 tablespoon potato flour (not potato starch)
Blend ingredients together. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Allow flour blend to warm to room temperature before using.
Oatmeal Maple Bread
MAKES 2 LOAVES
No kneading. No proofing the yeast. No problem! This bread has great texture, perfect for sandwiches or toast. The maple syrup does double duty, adding flavor and activating the yeast. Rolls have a thick, crispy crust with an airy, slightly chewy interior.
2 cups brown rice flour, preferably super-fine grind (see sidebar)
1 cup gluten-free oat flour
1½ cups sorghum flour or millet flour
1 cup tapioca starch/flour
½ cup potato starch
½ cup sweet rice flour
2 packages (2¼ teaspoons each) active dry yeast
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 tablespoon salt
5 eggs, room temperature
4 tablespoons maple syrup or amber agave nectar
½ cup shortening or non-dairy margarine, melted
2½ cups milk of choice (rice, soy, hemp, nut milk), warmed to 110 to 120 degrees
1 egg white, lightly beaten with a fork (to brush tops of loaves)
½ cup gluten-free oats
1. Prepare two 9-inch bread pans (or two 8-inch bread pans and 6 muffin tins) by greasing well and dusting with brown rice flour. Set aside.
2. Place brown rice flour, oat flour, sorghum flour, tapioca starch/flour, potato starch, sweet rice flour, dry yeast, xanthan gum and salt into the mixing bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment. Mix on low for a few seconds just to combine ingredients.
3. In separate bowl, hand whisk the eggs, maple syrup, shortening and milk.
4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Then mix for 5 minutes on medium-high speed. Batter will resemble a very thick cake batter.
5. Spoon batter into prepared pans. This recipe makes two 9-inch loaves or two 8-inch loaves plus 6 dinner rolls. To make the rolls, use a large ice cream scoop to portion the batter into 6 standard-size muffin cups; then divide remaining batter into two 8-inch bread pans.
6. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush the top of the dough with egg white. Sprinkle gluten-free oats on top.
7. Let dough rise in a warm place for approximately 40 minutes or until nearly doubled in size. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
8. Place bread pans in preheated oven and bake for approximately 30 (for rolls) to 40 minutes (for loaves). Bread is done when internal temperature reads 200 degrees on an instant-read thermometer.
9. Cool bread in pans for 10 minutes. Remove from pans and cool on a rack.
Each serving contains 150 calories, 5g total fat, 2g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 35mg cholesterol, 231mg sodium, 24g carbohydrate, 1g fiber, 3g protein.
TIP: No oat flour? Make it by processing gluten-free oats in a food processor with the steel blade attachment for 1 minute.
Mock Rye Bread
MAKES 2 LOAVES
There’s no rye in this bread but you’ll be taken by the rye-bread flavor and texture.
4 cups Gluten-Free High-Protein Flour Blend
1 tablespoon xanthan gum
2 teaspoons salt
½ cup almond meal, powdered milk or DariFree powdered milk alternative
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
1 package (2¼ teaspoons) dry yeast granules
1 teaspoon rye flavor powder, optional
2 eggs, room temperature
1 egg white
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
¼ cup shortening or margarine
1 tablespoon organic molasses or unsulphured molasses
4 tablespoons agave nectar or brown sugar
1 teaspoon coffee extract or 1 tablespoon instant coffee granules
2 cups warm milk of choice (rice, soy, hemp, nut milk) or water (110 to 115 degrees)
1. Grease two 8-inch loaf pans or two 8-inch round cake pans (at least 2 inches deep) and dust with rice flour.
2. In a medium-size bowl, combine flour blend, xanthan gum, salt, almond meal or powdered milk, cocoa powder, dry yeast and rye flavor powder, if desired. Set aside.
3. In mixing bowl of a stand mixer, combine eggs, egg white, cider vinegar, shortening or margarine, molasses, agave nectar and coffee extract. Mix ingredients together on medium-low speed for 1 minute to blend. Shortening will be lumpy.
4. Add milk or water to the wet ingredients and mix on low for 30 seconds.
5. Add half the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just blended. Add remaining half and blend. Then beat at medium-high speed for 4 minutes.
6. Spoon batter into prepared pans and set in a warm place to rise, about 50 minutes or until doubled in size. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
7. Bake bread pans in preheated oven for approximately 50 minutes until done. Bread is done when internal temperature reads 200 degrees on an instant-read thermometer. Bread may darken quickly. If so, lightly cover loaves with aluminum foil.
Each serving contains 106 calories, 3g total fat, 0g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 15mg cholesterol, 208mg sodium, 18g carbohydrate, 1g fiber, 2g protein.
TIP: Gluten-free rye flavor powder is available from Authentic Foods (authenticfoods.com).
VARIATION: For Caraway Rye Bread, add 1 tablespoon caraway seeds to the dry ingredients. Before setting your bread aside to rise, lightly beat one egg white with a fork and brush the top of the loaves with a pastry brush. Sprinkle additional caraway seeds on the top of the loaves and let rise.
MAKES 2 LOAVES
This high-protein bread has a springy texture that’s great toasted and makes scrumptious French toast. The natural sugars in the crushed pineapple and orange juice cause this bread to brown quickly. To prevent over-browning, loosely cover loaves with aluminum foil 10 minutes after bread begins baking.
4½ cups Gluten-Free High-Protein Flour Blend
1 tablespoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
¼ cup almond meal, powdered milk or Dari Free milk powder substitute
3 eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
4 tablespoons agave nectar
⅓ cup shortening or margarine, room temperature
2 (6-ounce) cans crushed pineapple with juice
½ cup orange juice, warmed to 110 degrees
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon dry yeast
1. Grease and flour two 8-inch loaf pans.
2. In a medium-size bowl, combine flour blend, xanthan gum, baking soda, salt, almond meal or dry milk powder and set aside.
3. In the mixing bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment, combine eggs, cider vinegar, agave nectar, shortening or margarine, and crushed pineapple. Mix on low speed until combined. Shortening will be lumpy.
4. In a glass measuring cup, heat orange juice to 110 degrees, about 45 seconds in a microwave. Stir yeast into juice and let sit to proof about 10 minutes. Yeast mixture will double in size. Set aside.
5. Add dry ingredients to egg mixture and mix for approximately 1 minute until well combined. Add yeast mixture and mix on low speed for 30 seconds. Then increase speed to medium-high and beat for 4 minutes.
6. Spoon batter into prepared pans and let rise in warm place for approximately 45 minutes or until nearly doubled in size. While bread is proofing, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
7. Place bread in oven and bake for approximately 50 minutes until done. Bread is done when internal temperature reads 200 degrees on an instant-read thermometer.
Each serving contains 72 calories, 3g total fat, 1g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 24mg cholesterol, 223mg sodium, 10g carbohydrate, 0g fiber, 2g protein.
Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Pumpernickel Bread
MAKES 1 LOAF
Black beans and dark molasses make this allergy-friendly bread moist, flavorful and nutritious. Dense and filling, this recipe can be made egg-free with good results; see instructions below. Enjoy it fresh or toasted.
1 tablespoon caraway seeds
⅔ cup gluten-free all-purpose flour blend of choice
¾ teaspoon baking soda
1½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon xanthan gum or guar gum (omit if already in your flour blend)
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dried dill weed
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, unsalted, rinsed well
3 tablespoon grape seed oil or extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon agave or honey
1 tablespoon dark molasses
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease a loaf pan or 2 mini-loaf pans (5¾ x 3 inches).
2. Toast caraway seeds in a dry pan over medium heat for 2 to 4 minutes until fragrant. Set aside.
5. Pour bean mixture into dry ingredients and combine. Mix in caraway seeds.
6. Transfer batter into prepared mini-loaf pans and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. When done, top will be firm and a toothpick will come out clean. (For mini-pans, test after 25 minutes. Toothpick should come out clean. Return to oven for 5 minutes if not quite baked; test again.)
7. Remove from pan(s) promptly and cool on a baking rack. Refrigerate after loaves have cooled completely.
Each serving contains 95 calories, 4g total fat, 1g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 45mg cholesterol, 260mg sodium, 12g carbohydrates, 2g fiber, 3g protein.
For Egg-Free Pumpernickel Bread, omit 3 eggs. Add 1 additional teaspoon xanthan gum (or guar gum) to dry ingredients in step 3. Combine 4½ teaspoons egg replacer with 6 tablespoons water; add to wet ingredients in step 4. If batter seems too dry, add 1 to 2 tablespoons water or milk of choice. Smooth top of batter with a wet spatula. Note that egg-free bread may require 5 to 10 minutes additional baking time.
Reprinted with permission from Culinary Creativity: Let Your Restrictions Set You Free, by Dawn Allen.