Baking Staples: Life as I know it in terms of Gluten Free Baking
So you wanna bake? Great!! Check the little vid above for Baking Staples. This is just a quick overall list, gluten free baking is vast so I’ll try to not overwhelm you and just give some tips:
The Quick and Dirty Checklist
You can pretty much make a lot of things with just these 6 ingredients, I call it the “The Gluten Free Newbie List”:
1) Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour -I don’t care what anyone says about some special blend they make or some other brand they like – day in day out, Bob’s Gluten Free All Purpose Flour works for ANY recipe
Pros- super versatile, and can be used as a base and mixed with other flours
Cons- everything will eventually kind of taste the same, that’s why we use so many different flours in gluten free baking because a multitude of flours helps us to get those “normal” flour results we are looking for.
2) Good Karma Flax Milk- most recipes need a liquid. Flax milk is my favorite because it's tasty but the unsweetened one is mellow it doesn’t interfere with the taste.
3) Flax Seeds (egg substitute) - ground flax seed has been my steadfast egg replacer in just about everything. I've tried apple sauce, adding more oil, banana, tofu, and other things, but I truly feel like “flax eggs” are the most egg-like of anything out there; they give me the results I want. You can also try ground chia seeds for a similar result.
To make a “flax egg”, ground flax seed into flax meal in a blender. Add 1 TBLS. Flax Meal to 3 TBLS. Water let sit 3 min, this makes one egg. If you buy the pre-made flax meal I usually do ½ TBLS to 3 TBLS water because the stuff you buy tends to absorb more water.
4) Coconut Sugar
Pros: super low on the glycemic index, it’s pretty natural, it's Paleo, and you can use it mostly as you would any other granulated sugar.
Con’s: it ain’t white, so if are making a frosting or a cake or something it is not going to look pure white with this sugar.
5) Xanthum Gum- used as a binder, it’s like the super binder for gluten free baking, don’t make things without it! Unless instructed to!
6) Distilled Coconut Oil- I talk about distilled coconut oil so much because it's awesome and doesn’t make all your baked goods taste like coconut - it has the coconut smell steamed out of it. This is one of the most versatile oils out there. You don’t want to use vegetable oil EVER, so make the switch to coconut oil! Click here for link.
Pro’s- you can use it as you would any other oil, plus it can withstand high heat.
Con’s- Distilled coconut oil can only be bought online.
This is a little overview on some gluten free flours and what they are good for:
Garbanzo Bean- Has lots of protein so it is great to mix with other flours.
GarFava- A mixture of garbanzo bean and fava bean flour, I love combining this with a couple of other flours for cakes!
Brown Rice- One of my absolute favorite flours, it’s my go-to for using with rolling pins, like putting it down before you start to roll dough.
White Rice- This is an extremely light flour, great for pie mixes.
Tapioca Flour- This flour has been around for ages and what a good flour it is! Light and fluffy.
Potato Starch-This stuff is powdered sugar-like in consistency but still a flour. Similar to tapioca flour and arrowroot.
Arrowroot Powder- Gosh do I LOVE arrowroot powder. It's great for thickening things up just like a cornstarch would do. It also works great in gluten free baking, but note that it can make things a little dryer because it will soak up more liquid.
Millet- Millet is great for cornmeal like needs, I don’t eat corn and I think millet flour is the closest to corn meal, but it’s not exactly the same. It has more texture to it and it slightly more granulated. This flour also goes rancid really easily so I suggest buying it in small amounts and storing in the fridge!
Almond Flour- I have to admit I haven’t really been able to get into almond flour, I know Paleo and grain-free people love it, but it isn’t my taste preference. I encourage others to try it to see if you like it.
Coconut Flour- Coconut flour won me over, especially when I started making cookies with it! Oh boy do I LOVE the taste of this flour, I think because it has a lot of taste. There is a subtle coconut flavor it to but it’s not over-powering. Like I said it is one of my fav’s for cookies!!
Teff- this flour is starting to get more recognition; it was the base of Ethiopian food for years, though now many of the dishes use whole wheat flour and teff. But Injera bread made with just teff flour is lovely! You can experiment with adding it in other things, like chocolate cake! It is a heartier dark flour.
Other Gluten Free Baking Staples that are great to have on hand
Succanat (another natural granulated sugar, I use it and coconut sugar interchangeably)
Dagoba Semi-Sweet Baking Chocolate
Coconut Shreds and Flakes
Sea Salt (Himalayan Pink is always my favorite)
Coconut Oil- I also love to use normal coconut oil all the time with the natural coconut flavor, my favorite source for this is Tropical Traditions click here for link
New Foods on my list to try
Banana Flour- yep it exists, friends of mine love it, I still need to try this stuff!
Yacon Syrup- is a low-glycemic sweetener that tastes like molasses. This sweetener really blew up this year and I have to get any yet, but I want to try it soon! They talked about it on the Dr. OZ Show and then it was sold out everywhere for months, but I heard its back in stock.
Oddly enough it's National Cheese Ball Day, but I don't eat real cheese. But I do love this Vegan Nary Dairy Cream Cheese, and am looking forward to making a Vegan Cheese Ball out of it one day.
So here's the thing this cheese is less than 10 ppm gluten free so for most gluten free people that is ok, the base is cashews, but they use a fermentation process that interacts with wheat but they wanted to make sure gluten free people could eat it so they got it tested.
I like to pair it with Jilz gluten free crackers, Yummy!
Vegan Gluten Free Meyer Lemon Chocolate Bark Recipe
Making Chocolate Bark is so simple, beautiful, and quick! Mine has Meyer Lemon in it, WHAATT?? Exactly it makes this Chocolate Bark pretty amazing. If you are a fan of Meyer Lemon like I am, I pretty much want to put it in and on everything possible, and I thought it would taste beyond yummy in Chocolate Bark so I gave it a go. The key is to add lots of salt to balance out the lemon, which really isn’t that lemony but the combo is quite perfect. Plus we add lots of nuts and seeds, I really go for it and even add more chocolate by adding mini chocolate chips!
The best thing about Chocolate Bark is you can do and add anything to it. Think of it as making your favorite chocolate bar in the world, what would it have in it? Then go for it!
Meyer Lemon is the more round and smooth lemon, with a thinner skin that is seasonal. It has a sweeter flavor than normal lemons, and is seriously the tastiest thing on the planet.
This is one of those handfuls sorts of recipes, handful of this or that. Leave out anything you don’t like and add anything you do. But I am telling you, you MUST try the Meyer Lemon, and as usual with most of my recipes bring this one to a dinner party, I just did and everyone was raving. Get to it!
8oz. Organic Dagoba Semi-Sweet Baking Chocolate (if you can’t find this stuff you can use normal dark chocolate bars
Meyer Lemon about 3-4 slices cut into tiny pieces
1 TBLS. Maldon Sea Salt (which is the big granules, but use normal sea salt if you must, if using normal salt use less salt about ½ TBLS. Spread evenly)
About a Handful of everything below which ends up being about 1/3c.
Coconut Shreds or Flakes
Mini Chocolate Chips
1) Chop Hazelnuts
2) Slice Meyer Lemon and cut into tiny pieces (see pic) you want part skin and part flesh
3) Melt your chocolate in a double boiler till smooth
4) Spread onto large baking sheet lined with parchment paper till about 1/4in thick
5) Toss on toppings evenly: Seeds, nuts, chocolate chips, coconut, salt, lemon
6) Chill in fridge for 30 min-1 hr for hardening, and then break into pieces when ready to eat. Store in fridge when not eating!
Vegan Rice Pudding Recipe made with Forbidden Rice
Forbidden Rice is named such for a reason, you feel you may be naughty for eating it cause it is sooo good. It’s usually used to make black sticky rice, and is common in Thai Food. I thought ooooh this rice probably makes some really amazing rice pudding and it does! It’s really nice how forbidden rice has such a unique flavor.
I’m sure many of you had rice pudding growing up, for us it was a special occasion, usually never planned. I usually didn’t even notice my mom making it but would start to smell it in the house. Simple foods are usually the best food, so that is probably why I love rice pudding so much and it feels so great how smoothing rice pudding is to the body.
I buy my forbidden rice at the health food store. It only takes just a couple simple ingredients to whip this up.
1 cup Forbidden rice
3c Good Karma Flax milk (or other favorite non dairy milk)
Pinch of Salt
1 Cinnamon stick
2 tsp Vanilla extract
Honey to sweeten or other favorite sweetener to taste about 1 TBLS.
2 TBLS.Coconut oil
In a medium sized pot put Rice, Flax Milk, Salt, and Cinnamon Stick. Cover and Let it come to boil then reduce to a simmer, let cook till rice is done about 25 min, then remove lid and continue to simmer till the consistency you desire. Next add vanilla extract, sweetener, and coconut oil. Eat warm!
You can always reheat this with a little more milk the next day, it usually stays well for 3 days.
I made this video because I get asked quite often what my Favorite Gluten Free Products are, I don’t eat much processed food, but when I do these are my picks!
Gluten Free Products can be expensive, I have tried alot of what’s out there, here is what I like, hoping you don’t have to waste your money trying them all!
Favorite gluten free products are all vegan too unless noted!! Everything is also corn free and soy free.
Most all these products are sold at Whole Foods or your local Co-op or Health Food Store
Chips: Beanfields Bean & Rice Chips
I love that these don’t have any corn in them. They are the perfect chip with lots of flavors, I like the Salted ones or Pico De Gallo. I use these when I make my UBER Nachos! recipe here
I really rarely eat pasta, but I do think this is the best Gluten Free Brand out there, I like all the different varieties of noodles, and feel like this cook up the best and hold their shape.
Bread: Canyon Bakehouse: Rosemary Focaccia Bread
*note this bread is not vegan, it contains eggs, but no dairy
I am telling you this is the BEST gluten free bread out there! It is sweetened with agave. Who doesn’t want some gluten free focaccia bread?!?! Oh and if you wanna make some BOMB grilled cheese use this bread with Daiya Cheese…the perfect combo for when you just have those cravings…
Buns: Canyon Bakehouse
*note this bread is not vegan, it contains eggs, but no dairy
It’s funny I never really thought of myself as someone who eats buns, especially cause I have been vegetarian for over half my life, I’m not sure what I would put in them. But one day I had a craving for something my mom used to make us growing up- Pizza Buns. Literally it is taking a bun, putting on some tomato sauce and adding cheese, and popping it in the oven. So that’s what I decided to do but with vegan cheese. It actually was pretty good, and I realized buns are good! These ones are super soft and fresh.
Rice Cakes: Lundberg Organic Brown Rice Cakes
I eat A LOT of rice cakes and I really enjoy that Lundberg just keeps coming out with new flavors all the time, I really love the Tamari ones, though most days I just stick with the plain ones. These are also a road trip essential for me, you can slather anything on these or stack avocado and tomato with some hummus as an open faced rice cake sandwich.
Crackers: Brown Rice Snaps Black Sesame
I like that these crackers are so crispy! They do have a strong flavor which I enjoy but you can’t eat them with everything, but so tasty none the less. I don’t even bother with the other flavors cause black sesame are just the best kind.
Crackers: Jilz Gluten Free Tuscan Crackerz
Jilz are so good! These are even grain free and paleo and one heck of an amazing gluten free cracker. I can’t get enough of these; my favorite thing to eat them with is hummus. The base of these is almond flour and seeds.
Cereal: Chia Goodness
My sister first bought this one time when she was visiting me and I thought it sounded so weird and wouldn’t even try it while she was staying with me. But months later it was still sitting in my cupboard and I was hungry so I gave it a try, Whoa! It was soo YUMMY! I don’t eat cereal for breakfast but I do like this Chia Goodness as a snack with some flax milk. It is also really great for traveling because it is already sweetened with natural sugar and it has nuts, apples, and spices in it.
Non-Dairy Cheese: Daiya, esp. Shredded Mozzarella
It took years for someone to finally make a good vegan cheese, and low and behold Daiya finally did it! This stuff is very tasty, very close to cheese, and melts great! It’s pretty processed so I only use it for special recipes, but I highly recommend trying it out.
Vegan Yogurt: So Delicious Coconut Yogurt Plain
This yogurt will win you over instantly! Coconut yogurt where have you been my whole life? So happy they made this product, it’s sooo tasty, and I use it in my dosa recipe here.
Vegan Milk: Good Karma Flax Milk Unsweetened
Loaded with Omega’s, I don’t think there has ever been a better non-diary milk then Good Karma, It is just sooo YUMMY! They have some varieties with added protein or vanilla favored which are good, but I like the plain unsweetened one the best!
Protein Food Bars: GoMacro Bars
I was never much a fan of protein food bars, but GoMacro has really hit the nail on the head, I just LOOOVE the taste of these. They have a bunch of varieties like Cherry, Cashew Cream, and Granola. These are the best thing to have on hand in the car, after a workout, traveling, or any other time you need some fuel! They are organic and non GMO too!
Chocolate Treats: Hail Mary Chocolate Tarts
Oh my goodness guys, these may just be the best treats out there, I know they sell them in every Whole Foods in Los Angeles. These tarts are like fudge heaven! They have a bunch of flavors like mint, and almond butter. You MUST try!!
Superfood packets: Green Superfood by Amazing Grass
Again this is another product that took me some time to find, I literally have tried so many green products out there, never really feeling like they did much for me, but THIS product really hit home. I actually feel really great after drinking it, and it is now my new favorite thing to travel with.
Tortilla’s: Trader Joes Brown Rice Tortilla’s
I am a little obsessed with Quesadilla’s, I’m not even sure if you can call my version a Quesadilla, but I think any toppings on a tortilla thrown into the oven is one. Trader Joes makes the best Gluten Free Tortilla out there, and there are only 3 or 4 ingredients in them: brown rice, water, salt. Can’t beat that! Plus they are Corn Free double bonus.
Fortune Cookies- A Taste Of Thai Toasted Coconut Fortune Cookies
Gluten Free Fortune Cookies? Yo! I know that these are a weird one, but one time I bought these at a normal grocery store and I instantly thought they were awesome. They are a different shape than the traditional kind of fortune cookie, but I think they would be fun for a party or even just with tea!
I would love to hear what your favorite gluten free products are!
Let me know in the comments below
M.A.K.E. is Matthew Kenney's raw food restaurant here in Santa Monica. I finally got the chance to go and have a full meal there, I had only had dessert in the past.
I LOVE this place, it is really exquisite raw food. This place is really what beautiful food is all about, as I am sure you can tell from the photos above the best thing is it tastes as good as it looks! Everything is gluten free and vegan here!!
Guacamole wrapped in jicama, topped with pistachios this is the perfect appetizer!
The best version of a banana split ever!1 It's sorta like raw neapolitan ice cream trio. Neapolitan was always my favorite ice cream growing up! The dried banana in this is made of apple bananaz so sweet and good!
We couldn't decide on one dessert so we had to order two!! This is black sesame cake with fruit and maca ice cream. Delish!!
Trumpet mushrooms, radish, and sprouts wrapped in lettuce. I can't recommend this place more, everything is so excellent.
M.A.K.E. is located in Santa Monica Place