The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Gluten-free Sourdough Bread

CAphyl's picture

Gluten-free Sourdough Bread

Well, I had to try it again, to see if I can do better than my last effort.  I would say that this is the best gluten-free loaf I've ever made, and it's sourdough, which I prefer. Not close to regular sourdough, but OK.

Gluten-free bread tends to be much heavier than gluten-bread, and this was no exception.  However, I got decent crust this time, and the crumb was OK. The taste was good, very dense and moist compared to gluten bread, but tasty and tangy.

I used the start of Nicole Hunn’s  “No-Rye Rye Bread” for this recipe, but altered it quite a bit.  Gluten-free bread is frustrating, but I really wanted to make a  decent gluten-free sourdough loaf.

I made a sourdough starter from gluten-free flour and kept it in the refrigerator.  I used Nicole’s recipe, but it is confusing and complicated, so when I refreshed it, I just used gluten-free oat and tapioca flours.  It perked up very well. You can make a gluten-free sourdough starter similar to regular sourdough starter using gluten-free flour(s) and water.

Here is the recipe I used for the sourdough bread:


80 grams gluten-free starter

½ cup plus 3 tablespoons bottled water at room temperature

1 cup plus 10 tablespoons gluten-free bread flour (I used Pamela’s gluten-free  bread mix)



1-1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons warm bottled water (about 95 degrees)

3-1/4 cup gluten-free bread flour (I used Pamela’s bread mix)

½ cup whole grain gluten-free flour (I used King Arthur’s WW gluten-free)

1 tablespoon salt

1 tablespoon honey

1-1/2 tablespoons sesame seeds



Place the starter into the bowl of your stand mixer and add the water; mix using your paddle attachment for a few minutes.  Add the bread flour until it is incorporated and switch to the dough hook and knead for about two minutes. Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic and place it in a warm location until the starter has doubled in size (at least 6-8 hours; I left mine for 24 hours due to schedule).

Making the Dough

Once the starter has doubled, add it to your stand mixer bowl along with the water. Mix with the paddle attachment for one minute. Add the bread flour and whole wheat flours and switch to the dough hook.  Mix on low speed and knead. Add the salt, molasses and honey and mix on medium speed for about three minutes.  Add the seeds and mix until incorporated. Place the dough in the refrigerator in a lightly oiled bowl for at least 12 hours or until it is doubled in size.  I left it for more than 24 hours.

Shaping the Dough

Take the dough out of refrigerator, ease onto a floured surface and shape into a ball.  Place into a banneton coated with brown rice flour (gluten-free). Place in the refrigerator overnight.


On baking day, preheat your domed covered baker to 500 degrees. Sprinkle some corn meal  (gluten-free) into the bottom tray and place the bread on top of the corn meal.  Spray lightly with water and score as desired.  Bake at 500 degrees with the lid on for 30 minutes and then remove the lid and bake at 450 for another 15-20 minutes.

Cool on a wire rack for at least 30 minute before slicing.


Mebake's picture

Good Job. I like your result. I haven't tried hearth baking for GF bread, yet.


CAphyl's picture

It is so much heavier than regular bread, and a bit of a trial.  I made the five grain today, so that's more fun! 

Meganp's picture

Hi, I was curious if you knew if Pamela's Artisan flour blend would be an appropriate substitute for Pamela's bread mix? I can't have the refined sugar that's added to the bread mix, but I use the Artisan mix and was wondering if I it would work in this recipe. Thank you!

CAphyl's picture

Megan:  If you substitute the artisan flour, you must use some xanthin gum, which is included in the bread mix, but not in the flour. It's hard to tell you how much to use, but perhaps no more than 1/2 teaspoon.  If you don't use it, there is nothing to act as the "gluten" type agent to hold it together.  Also, look at one of my later posts for an update on my gluten-free baking.  Hope that helps.  Best, Phyllis

dabrownman's picture

comment.  The photo in the body of the text didn't show up for viewing for some viewing.  It sure sounds like a step down the GF Road.  The crust looks like the crumb should have some hope or promise of being open.

Glad to see you posting again Phyllis

CAphyl's picture

dabrownman:  Been traveling so much that my baking is suffering.  In the UK now, and have some dough going.  A friend loves sourdough flatbreads, and I'll be making those today for his birthday!  Hope you are well.  I will have to catch up on the site as I miss seeing all those great breads.  It is sad that I can't eat the good stuff, and have to stick to GF, which is a poor substitute!  Take care.  Phyllis