Let’s talk Gluten-Free

A few weeks ago, I had a request for some gluten-free recipes. For those of you that don’t know, a gluten-free diet is one which excludes gluten. So, what is gluten and where is this gluten found? Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley and rye. It can also be found in spelt and kamut. Gluten is also a food additive called dextrin. Dextrin is used to thicken or stabilize food products. Many people cannot tolerate this gluten so they must have a gluten-free diet. Many people who are gluten-free would like to continue using their old recipes but need to know how to convert those recipes to gluten-free recipes.  Here are some tips that I think will help you to do that.

These tips come from the blog, glutenright.com

Double the baking powder – as the gluten based recipe directs.
◊ Add xanthan gum
– Use ¼ tsp of xanthan gum per cup of flour to recipes such as cake, cookies and muffins to help gluten free recipes rise well and stick together.
Add xanthan gum last
– After all other ingredients are mixed together.
Limit stirring
– of xanthan gum to 5-6 strokes.
Replace baking soda
– with baking powder in recipes without vinegar.
Use gluten free all purpose flour mix
– Replace traditional flour with a gluten free all purpose flour mix. This can be found in the health food section of many grocery stores. You can also make your own flour mix. See below.
Follow directions – Keep pan preparation, baking temperature and time as recipe directs.

Be sure to use butter, milk and eggs at room temperature – If the butter is too hot, it may cook the eggs. If the milk and eggs are too cold, then the butter may solidify. A quick option is to substitute canola oil for butter.

Here is a link to making your own flour mix.


I am also including a recipe from from the same website, gluten-free goddess for zucchini bread.

Gluten-Free Goddess Zucchini Bread


You can make this lovely gluten-free zucchini bread with or without eggs. And it’s dairy-free. Its delicate flavor comes from a secret ingredient. Coconut milk.
Preheat your oven to 350ºF.  Line the bottom of a 9-inch loaf pan with a piece of parchment paper. Lightly oil it.


1 rounded cup of fresh, grated zucchini (I partially peel my zukes, in stripes)
1 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup tapioca starch (or tapioca flour)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup light olive oil or coconut oil
2 free-range organic egg whites, beaten or egg replacer (1/4 cup liquid)
1/4 cup coconut milk
1 teaspoon fresh lemon or orange juice
1 tablespoon bourbon vanilla


1/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

Instructions:Press the grated zucchini with a paper towel to remove as much moisture as you can. After pressing, fluff with a fork  Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the sorghum flour, tapioca starch, baking powder, baking soda, xanthan gum, sea salt, and cinnamon. Add in the brown sugar.
Add the oil, lemon juice, egg whites or egg replacer, and the coconut milk. Beat to combine and continue to beat on medium high until the batter is smooth- about two minutes.
Add in almost all of the shredded zucchini (I save out a few shreds to decorate the top of the loaf) and stir by hand to combine. If you are adding nuts, stir them in to distribute.
Scoop and scrape the batter into the prepared loaf pan and using a silicone spatula, even out the top.
Add a few shedded zucchini strands to the top.
Bake in the center of a preheated oven until the top is golden and firm, yet gives a bit when lightly touched. It should feel slightly springy. This may take anywhere from 50 to 60 minutes. It took 55 minutes for my zucchini bread to bake. Test with a thin sharp knife or a wooden pick- either should emerge with no crumbs or batter.

Cook time: 1 hour

Yield: 1 9-inch loaf
Another website/blog that has some very good gluten-free recipes is gluten free girl  http://glutenfreegirl.com/ This website has recipes and other links that can help you live gluten-free.

And of course you can visit the Cooking Neighborhood here at the library for gluten-free cookbooks that have some tasty recipes too.

So, for those of you that need to use gluten-free recipes, check out the blogs that I have mentioned or come in to the library and check the Cooking Neighborhood for all of your cooking needs. Happy Cooking!!




One thought on “Let’s talk Gluten-Free

  1. Thanks so much for explaining “gluten” and the diet in general. And thank you for including the zucchini bread recipe…think I’ll make it! The equivalents of ingredients when converting from a gluten recipe to a gluten-free recipe will be very helpful!

    Thanks for your time and effort!

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