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Gluten-free holiday desserts

Michele Borboa, MS is a freelance writer and editor specializing in health, fitness, food, lifestyle, and pets. Michele is a health and wellness expert, personal chef, cookbook author, and pet-lover based in Bozeman, Montana. She is also...

Gluten-free holiday desserts

The holiday season wouldn't be complete without a few indulgent, swoon-inducing desserts. Here are three easy gluten-free holiday dessert recipes that all of your holiday guests will enjoy, whether they follow a gluten-free diet or not.

Peppermint brownies

Gluten-Free Peppermint Brownies

Makes 16 brownies

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup coarsely chopped dark chocolate
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup strongly brewed coffee
  • 2/3 cup gluten-free flour (I use Tom Sawyer Gluten Free Flour)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 cup crushed candy cane (read the label to make sure it is gluten-free)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. and line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch baking dish with parchment paper.
  2. In a double boiler, melt chocolate and butter, stirring often, until smooth. Remove from heat.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together sugar, vanilla, and eggs until well-combined. Whisk in coffee until smooth.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, and baking powder. Stir in chocolate and coffee mixtures until well-combined. Stir in candy cane.
  5. Pour batter into prepared baking dish and bake for 35 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out with just a few wet crumbs (don't overbake until knife comes out clean).
  6. Cool brownie on a wire rack for 5 to 10 minutes. Lift brownie from pan by pulling up on parchment paper and let cool completely on a wire rack.
  7. Transfer brownie to a cutting board and cut into 16 brownies to serve.

Pistachio Cranberry Dark Chocolate Bark

Serves 8

Ingredients

  • 2 cups coarsely chopped dark chocolate
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped white candy coating (read the label to make sure it is gluten-free)
  • 1 cup shelled pistachios
  • 1 cup dried cranberries

Directions

  1. In a double boiler, melt dark chocolate, stirring often, until smooth. Keep warm.
  2. Meanwhile, place white candy coating in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on HIGH for 1 minute, stir, and continue to microwave for 30 second intervals, stirring, until melted and smooth.
  3. On a greased baking sheet, pour dark chocolate in a puddle and use the back of a spatula to evenly spread.
  4. Drop spoonfuls of melted white candy coating on dark chocolate and use a knife to swirl white throughout the dark.
  5. Scatter with pistachios and cranberries and use the back of a spatula to press them into the melted chocolate.
  6. Place in the refrigerator until set. Break bark into pieces to serve.

Holiday Cheesecake

Serves 16

Ingredients

  • 1-1/2 cups crushed gluten-free graham crackers
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 16 ounces firm silken tofu, at room temperature
  • 1 (8-ounce) block Neufchatel cheese, softened at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup lite sour cream, at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons gluten-free flour
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • Zest of 1 lemon

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Combine cracker crumbs and butter in the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan, stirring to coat crumbs with butter. Press mixture into an even layer.
  3. In the bowl of a stand up mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat remaining ingredients until smooth.
  4. Pour batter into pan and bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until cheesecake is slightly jiggly in the center when pan is gently shaken.
  5. Turn oven off and leave cheesecake in oven with oven door ajar for 1 hour. Let cool completely then refrigerate for 4 to 5 hours or overnight.
  6. Run a knife between the cake and pan then remove the sides of the pan. To serve, use a knife, wiping with a paper towel after each cut, to slice cake into 16 servings.
  7. Serve with fresh berries, berry sauce, or chocolate sauce.

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