The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Help with Gluten Free bread

jbaudo's picture

Help with Gluten Free bread

I have just found out that a gluten free diet might benefit  my middle son who has been having lots of food issues.  He already can't have milk because he is lactose intolerant (which hasn't been too much trouble because I have been able to use rice milk in my baking with nice results).  ALSO for now the Dr wants us to stay away from yeast.  I have bought a variety of gluten free flours and xanthan, starches etc. Now I just need some tried and true recipes to start with.  Most of the recipes I have found that don't use yeast or gluten are for irish soda bread. Soda bread sounds fine but I would like to be able to branch out a little bit.   Does anybody have any experience with this type of bread or have any  recipes that you have tried that are really good?  Any help or advice will be greatly appreciated.


Janknitz's picture

When looking for recipes I've come across a few gluten free baking sites.  Do a google search and I'm sure you'll find some good sites.  You might also do a search for celiac disease.  CD sufferers can't have gluten, so there are probably links to good sites.

flournwater's picture

I cook for both diabetics and celiac patients.  The Wendy Wark recipe for gluten free flour has, in my experience, produced the best and most consistently reliable results for just about anything I bake for gluten free consumption:


Take a look and give it a try.  But weigh the ingredients, don't use dip/level/pour.

ejm's picture

My father is celiac and I have, on occasion, made gluten-free muffins (following any muffin recipe and substituting gluten-free flour mix cup for cup) and gluten-free bread. But the bread I have made was with yeast.

The following flour mixture that is based on one of those listed at is very similar to the flour mixture that my mom uses:

Gluten-free flour
1 cup white rice flour
1 cup brown rice flour
2/3 cup potato starch flour
1/3 cup tapioca flour
1 tsp xanthan gum (or guar gum)

Mix well. Store in an airtight container in the fridge. Use cup for cup in place of wheat flour in recipes.

Mom has made all kinds of baked goods - cookies, cakes, muffins - using any of her recipes that call for wheat flour and simply substituting the gluten-free flour mix. The resulting baking is almost (but not quite) as good as the things made with wheat flour.

You might take a look at these blogs that are devoted to gluten-free eating:

Hope that helps!


P.S. Can't eat bread? "Let them eat cake!" ;-) I do realize that the following are not bread but these recipes make absolutely stellar cake (arguably better than when made with wheat flour), simply substituting the wheat flour with white rice flour. I'm guessing that if milk is disallowed, butter is also off the list; use vegetable oil or margarine rather than butter and the cake is still very good.


jbaudo's picture

I tried a recipe from Katrina's Kitchen this morning for soda bread and my son loved it. I somehow forgot to buy the zanthum gum which I sure would have improved the texture. It came out more like cake than bread but he didn't mind at all. Luckily my kids aren't picky eaters.

Flournwater - you say that I should weigh the ingredients but the website doesn't give the weights.  What weights do you use for measuring the flour mix?  I am a huge fan of weighing flour for consistent results.

flournwater's picture

128 grams brown rice flour
160 grams white rice flour
32 grams potato starch flour
85 grams tapioca starch flour
96 grams sweet rice flour
43 grams cornstarch
2 tsp. xamthan or guar gum

If you find that's a bit light, you can adjust to:

142 grams brown rice flour
178 grams white rice flour
 36 grams potato starch flour
 94 grams tapioca starch flour
107 grams sweet rice flour
 47 grams cornstarch
2 tsp. xanthan or guar gun

For preparing large batches for storage:

1 pound rice flour  (454 grams)
12 ounces brown flour (363 grams)
3 ounces potato starch flour (91 grams)
8 ½ ounces tapioca starch flour (241 grams)
8 ounces sweet rice flour (227 grams)
4 ½ ounces cornstarch (122 grams)
¼ ounce xantham gum (5 – 8 grams)

sharonk's picture

HI Jennifer,

I have allergies to gluten, dairy, eggs, soy and yeast. I spent the better part of 3 years developing bread that I could eat. I succeeded and now I teach other people to bake this bread for themselves. I also sell the recipe book on my

I combined old fashioned sourdough techniques with simple gluten free grains. The soudough technique ferments the flour rendering it more digestible than unfermented flour. For me this was important because my intestines were very damaged by the time I got my food allergy tests at age 50 and couldn't tolerate some of the standard gluten free grains and ingredients like tapioca flour, sorghum flour, and chick pea flour. I also didn't like the xanthan gum as a food ingredient.

I have a small blog on fresh loaf where I discuss the benefits of gluten free sourdough. I also have a separate blog, the art of gluten free sourdough baking, where I share the recipes for my starter and my first successful loaf which I can no longer eat because of those flours I mentioned. It's a good loaf, though. The recipes in the recipe package I sell use simpler ingredients and are highly digestible, tasty and have a long shelf life. They include muffins, pancakes, pizza dough and I'm getting ready to add my latest successful recipes for loaf bread to it.

The sourdough technique may be a bit daunting and seem overly time consuming but I have found once the techniques are understood and mastered, the timing of making these breads can be efficiently worked into your daily routine.

Please contact me if you have questions. My mission is to share my recipes with people who need and will deeply appreciate them for the nutritious comfort food they are.