How-to convert your favourite recipes to gluten-free

Sometimes eating gluten-free can be a hassle — especially when most recipes don’t account for people with Celiac disease or an allergy to gluten [a protein found in wheat, rye and barley products]. So instead of running out and buying a bunch of gluten-free cookbooks, we have some super simple tips on how to convert most recipes into ones that are gluten-free.

Woman baking gluten free cookiesTip 1: Swap the flour

A simple way to convert a recipe is to substitute all-purpose gluten-free flour in place of all-purpose regular flour at a ratio of one for one. A great gluten-free flour to try is Bob’s Red Mill all-purpose gluten-free flour. You will need to add one teaspoon of xanthan gum if you are baking items such as cakes and or breads.

Tip 2: Eliminate the flour

You can also omit flour altogether for some recipes. For example, try this simple peanut butter cookie recipe: 1 cup peanut butter, 1 cup sugar and one to two eggs [depending on how moist you want the cookies to be]. Blend ingredients and bake at 350 degrees F for about 10 minutes. Yield: six to eight cookies.

Tip 3: Consider arrowroot powder as an substitute

Arrowroot powder is another ingredient that can be used in gluten-free recipes as a substitution for xanthan gum, if you are having a hard time finding the latter. If you use Arrowroot as a substitution, use 1/2 teaspoon of arrowroot powder for each cup of wheat flour. Note: Round up if the recipe calls for a partial cup.

Tip 4: Make a flour mixture

Another thing you can try, is making your own flour mixture, which works in place of flour. To make this recipe combine 3 parts white or brown rice flour, 2 parts potato starch, 1 part tapioca flour or starch and add 1 teaspoon of xanthan gum for every 1 1/2 cups of the flour mixture.

Tip 5: Try Experimenting with other ingredients

When swapping gluten-free flour for all-purpose flour you need to remember that other ingredients in the recipe may need to be adjusted or changed as well. For example, you may have to add additional liquid ingredients such as water or oil [depending on what the recipe calls for] to make up for the extra dryness in some gluten-free flours. Also as a general rule, you can add 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder for every cup of flour used in a recipe so it will bake properly.

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