Adapting Baking Recipes to be Gluten Free

13 Dec

Can’t find a suitable gluten-free recipe for your favorite cookies or baked goods? I couldn’t either. I’ve used this method for adapting/creating recipes quite a few times, and the results are almost always “acceptable” (not bad for a first try!) and usually very good to excellent.

Note: Yeast breads are a whole different story, and this method won’t work for them.

Step 1: Choose a similar gluten-free recipe to compare to, one from a trusted source, or one you’ve had success with before. The recipe should be for a similar type of baked good (rolled cookie, drop cookie, quick bread, etc).

Step 2: Look at the main ingredients in the gluten free recipe. What’s the ratio of flour to butter to liquid/eggs? Also make a note of what “extra” ingredients were used for binding (xanthan gum, egg replacer, gelatin, etc) and in what quantities relative to the amount of flour.

Step 3: Compare the main ingredients in the gluten-free recipe to the ingredients in your gluten-y favorite recipe. Do they have similar amounts of flour? Does it look like you could add an extra egg?

Step 4: Write your new recipe, blending the two recipes. Increase or decrease the amount of flour you use based on the differences you see. Add binders to your flour in a similar ratio to what’s used in the gluten free recipe. Add more protein to your recipe where you can to make up for the loss of protein in your flours (replace water with milk, add an extra egg white, etc).

Step 5: When you’re mixing it up, use your experience and intuition. Does it look too runny? Too dry? Adjust accordingly. Write it down.

Step 6: Enjoy, take notes, and be realistic in your expectations. Not every “first try” will be perfect. Make notes on things you might change for next time (no, you won’t remember). Soon, you’ll have an amazing new gluten-free recipe!


One Response to “Adapting Baking Recipes to be Gluten Free”


  1. Gluten Free Christmas Cookies: Gingerbread & Sugar Cookies « Gluten Free Recipe Monkey - December 13, 2011

    […] If you’ve got a different favorite cookie recipe, try adapting it to be gluten-free! […]

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