These chocolate chip gluten free cheesecake blondies have the chew of a blonde brownie with a hint of the creamy texture of a perfectly baked cheesecake. The perfect alternative to brownies!
How to make cheesecake blondies
The ingredients in and process of making these layered blondies are simple, but there are two steps. The total baking time is nearly an hour, but most of it is inactive, just waiting for the bars to bake low (300°F) and slow (nearly an hour) in the oven.
Reading through the recipe once entirely before getting to work is a good idea for every recipe. But it’s especially important when you’re making a layered dessert that is essentially two recipes in one.
First, parbake the crust
The blondie layer is divided into two portions, one on the bottom that makes a crust, and one on top of the cheesecake filling. Since the blondie batter is thick and sticky, it is possible to place one raw blondie layer on the bottom, followed immediately by cheesecake layer and the remaining blondie batter on top.
I’ve tried making this recipe just like that, without parbaking the crust by baking it alone for 10 minutes in a 325°F oven. But I find that the cheesecake layer bakes into nothing more than a swirl in all of the blondie batter when the recipe is made that way. Plus, you have to bake the cheesecake longer to get it to set properly, so it’s less creamy.
When you parbake the crust, it’s a thin enough layer that it’s mostly set after 10 minutes. Allow it cool a bit so the pan is easier to handle, then top it with the cheesecake batter followed by the remaining blondie batter.
Since the blondie batter is relatively thick and sticky, it will combine a bit with the cheesecake batter as you spread it out. The three layers aren’t as distinct as they are in, say, rainbow cookies, but the textures are all just right this way.
Bake the bars low and slow (“water bath” optional)
One of the most common ways of baking a cheesecake evenly, without any cracks in the surface, is to bake it in a bain-marie, or a water bath. Placing the cake pan in a larger pan with water that climbs about halfway up the sides of the cake pan keeps the cake from baking too quickly on the outside and keeps the temperature surrounding the cheesecake constant.
I used to go through that sort of trouble baking cheesecakes and it was such a pain since cheesecake is typically baked in a springform pan, which isn’t watertight. I graduated to adding a pan of water to the oven positioned on the rack below the cheesecake and gave myself permission to shrug off any cracks.
Then, finally, I learned that the main cause of cracks in a classic cheesecake is overbeaten eggs. So now I beat the cream cheese, sugar, salt, and vanilla until very light and fluffy. But once I add the egg, the mixture is beaten only to combine, no more.
I do still recommend adding a separate pan of water to the oven. These gluten free cheesecake blondies are most tender and chewy when they bake in a moist environment.
Ingredients and substitutions
Dairy-free: This is a tough one since I don’t know of any proper substitute for traditional cream cheese in cheesecake. You can try using your favorite nondairy cream cheese in place of the cream cheese, and possibly adding another egg white to help the cheesecake set up in the oven.
In place of the butter in the blondie layer, you can use Melt vegan butter (my favorite butter substitute) or half Spectrum nonhydrogenated vegetable shortening + half Earth Balance buttery sticks. And be sure to use nondairy miniature chocolate chips.
Egg-free: There are two whole eggs and one egg white in the blondie layer, and one whole egg in the cheesecake layer. I’m afraid that’s just too many eggs to expect to replace with egg substitutes. 😕
These gluten free vanilla cake donuts are soft, moist and tender, and bake up in minutes. They’re basically the perfect vanilla donut.
This donut recipe is easy to mix in one bowl and has enough leaveners to bake perfectly light and tender in just 12 minutes in a 350°F oven. It’s sweet and flavorful enough to enjoy plain right out of the oven, or with a simple vanilla glaze or a sugar coating that crackles once it’s cool.
What are cake donuts?
Cake donuts are a type of quick bread, made with chemical leaveners like baking powder and baking soda instead of yeast. They’re baked in the oven in a donut pan, but they aren’t exactly like cupcakes or muffins since they’re less chewy than cupcakes and lighter in texture than muffins.
Cake donuts aren’t exactly yeasted donuts, either, which are fried instead of baked. Proper yeasted donuts are light in the center, and crisp-tender on the outside since they’re deep-fried.
These gluten free vanilla cake donuts have quite a lot of chemical leaveners in them, but not so much that it affects the taste. Plus, they have 2 eggs in 12 standard-size donuts for extra rise and tenderness. And instead of using milk in the batter, this recipe calls for plain yogurt which adds flavor and a makes for a light, open crumb.
These donuts are full of flavor all on their own, without any topping. Keep them plain, and it’s very easy to freeze them for serving later.
There are two topping options in the recipe below: a glaze and a sugar-coating. A simple confectioners’ sugar glaze is a classic choice for these simple vanilla donuts. The donuts must cool in the pan for about 5 minutes before you invert them onto a wire rack to cool completely before glazing them. Otherwise, some of the glaze will melt into the donuts and the rest will run right off.
If you’d like these baked cake donuts to taste more like they’ve been fried, go for the sugar-coating. You’ll want to let the donuts cool in the pan for 5 minutes, invert them onto a wire rack, and work with them still warm.
Just dip them in some melted butter (nondairy butter works just fine here) and then in sugar. When the donuts are still warm, the sugar will harden into a light shell as the coating cools.
How to prevent the donut hole from closing during baking
I have owned many, many donut pans over the years, in nearly every shape and size, from nearly every brand. I’ve found that the very best pan, the only pan that actually makes donuts with holes that don’t swell shut during baking, is the 6-well standard-size nonstick donut pan from Wilton (affiliate link—feel free to shop around).
The batter that you place in each well of the donut pan cannot extend above the center of each well of the pan. Otherwise, the donut hole will close up and not extend all the way through the donut once it’s baked.
If that center column doesn’t rise up at least two-thirds of the depth of each well, you will only be able to make flat, skinny donuts if you want the hole to extend all the way through. The Wilton brand nonstick pans are the only pans I’ve found that with a center column of the proper height.
I do have a trick for filling the wells a bit higher with batter while still preserving the donut hole…
Just moisten the pointer finger of your dominant hand, and run it all around the center column of each well. That will force the batter away from the center and toward the edge of the pan.
Since the batter is thick, it won’t run back toward the center. As the donuts bake from the outside in, they’ll creep slowly toward the center without closing the hole.
Ingredients and substitutions
Dairy-free: In place of the butter in the recipe below (both in the batter and for the sugar coating), try using any of the following: Melt brand vegan butter, Spectrum nonhydrogenated vegetable shortening, or Earth Balance buttery sticks.
In place of the plain yogurt, you can use dairy-free plain yogurt. So Delicious brand sells a good plain nondairy yogurt.
Egg-free: In place of the eggs in this recipe, you can try using your favorite egg replacement. A boiled flax egg tends to work best, but it’s a lot of work. You can also try one “chia egg” (1 tablespoon ground white chia seeds + 1 tablespoon lukewarm water, mixed and allowed to gel) for each egg.
Corn-free: In place of cornstarch, try using arrowroot powder or potato starch.
This super simple recipe for gluten free chocolate chip yogurt quick bread always makes a perfectly moist and tender loaf!
What’s a quick bread?
Quick breads are just like muffins, which rise with a combination of eggs and chemical leaveners like baking soda and baking powder (instead of yeast). But they’re baked in a loaf pan, like bread, and sliced thickly to serve.
You’re not going to make a sandwich on a loaf of quick bread (although my son never seems to tire of asking), but they still hold a special place in my heart. That’s probably why there are quite a few quick bread recipes here on the blog. They usually come together pretty quickly (ha ha). Even though they’re very similar to muffins, not just any muffin recipe can be successfully baked into a loaf.
What makes this gluten free yogurt quick bread special?
This quick bread is incredibly moist and tender, with a nice open crumb and a mild tang from the plain yogurt. You could also use flavored yogurt, but I never like to bake with flavored yogurts. I’d rather add the flavor separately so I can keep all the flavors bright and fresh-tasting.
This recipe is even simpler than most quick breads, too, with a really easy ingredient list: flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt, sugar, whisked together, then butter, yogurt, and eggs added before everything is combined with a mixer.
I made this one with miniature chocolate chips since just 3 ounces of miniature chocolate chips go a long, long way. You could just as easily make yours with some small dried fruit (I bet chopped dried apricots would be fabulous) or even chopped nuts (raw, chopped pistachios would be heaven).
If you would like a nice dome shape, just be sure to follow the shaping instructions in the recipe. It’s really easy with wet hands (a cook’s best tools!) and a wet spatula. Of course, it’s not really too important for the loaf to split right in the center during baking. It just makes for a pretty presentation.
How to get that nice, tender crumb in your bread
The batter is relatively thick, but not stiff, as long as you bring all of the ingredients to room temperature before baking. If your batter is too stiff, your loaf will bake up with a tighter crumb and may be dry and tough.
Be sure to measure all of your ingredients by weight, not volume (volume measurements are almost impossible to get just right), and don’t overmix the batter. Even though this is a gluten free loaf and there’s no wheat gluten to overwork, gluten free doughs and batters can still be overmixed and end up tough.
Ingredients and substitutions
Dairy-free: If you are eating dairy-free, you’ll have to replace both the butter and the plain yogurt in this recipe (and be sure to use dairy-free chocolate chips). The butter can probably be replaced effectively with half (3 tablespoons) Earth Balance buttery sticks and half (3 tablespoons) Spectrum nonhydrogenated vegetable shortening.
The plain yogurt can probably be replaced with your favorite brand of plain nondairy yogurt. Watch the video carefully and pay attention to the consistency of the plain yogurt I use in this recipe. It should be a thickly pourable consistency.
Egg-free: There are two eggs in this recipe, so you should be able to replace each of them with a “chia egg” (1 tablespoon ground white chia seeds + 1 tablespoon lukewarm water, mixed and allowed to gel). If you’re willing to cook and strain “flax eggs,” that might work even better.
Corn-free: In place of cornstarch, you can try using arrowroot powder or even potato starch.
Chocolate chips: I really like Enjoy Life brand miniature chocolate chips, since they actually taste, well, like chocolate. You can use any sort of miniature chips you like. You can also use full-sized chocolate chips, but they don’t scatter throughout the dough like the miniature variety.
There isn’t a ton of sugar in this recipe (just 3/4 of a cup of granulated sugar in the whole loaf), but it’s a very simple flavor profile so you’ll want your mix-in to offset the tender sweetness of the bread itself. Your mix-in should be something that doesn’t add moisture, like fresh or frozen berries.
If you’d like to make a blueberry quick bread, I recommend using my gluten free blueberry muffin bread recipe instead. It has a whole different moisture balance, and that recipe has everything taken care of for you already.
Light, flaky and extra tender, this recipe for gluten free cream cheese buttermilk biscuits is the foolproof formula for soft biscuits you’ve been looking for.
How are cream cheese biscuits different?
Cream cheese buttermilk biscuits are, of course, similar to traditional flaky all-butter biscuits. Both types of biscuits are beautifully layered and flaky. But cream cheese biscuits are the impossibly tender biscuit you maybe didn’t even know you wanted.
The ingredients in butter biscuits and cream cheese biscuits are largely the same (flour, chemical leaveners, salt, butter, and buttermilk). Plus, in both types of biscuits, all of the ingredients must be kept cold so that the fats expand in the heat of the oven and create the flaky layers we love.
But when you add cream cheese to the mixture, it creates a tenderness inside each flaky layer that is hard to describe. Plus, the lightly tangy flavor from the mixture of butter, buttermilk, and cream cheese will have you hooked at the first bite.
How to make sure your biscuits are tender, not tough
Since traditional buttermilk biscuits are made with chemical leaveners (baking powder and baking soda), not yeast, it’s rare that biscuits simply don’t rise at all in the oven—assuming your leaveners are fresh. If you’ve had trouble in the past with baking biscuits, the, it’s most likely been a problem with texture.
When conventional, gluten-containing baked goods are tough when they’re meant to be tender, it’s usually a result of having overworked the dough, which overdevelops the gluten. But even though we’re using gluten free flours, our baked goods can still end up tough instead of tender.
The most common reasons for tough biscuits are: overworking the dough (yes, that’s still an issue with gluten free flours!), over measuring the flours (be sure to bake by weight, not volume), using the wrong flours which are gritty and unbalanced, or using too much flour in shaping the dough.
Of course, if you want the easiest biscuits ever, you can try our gluten free drop biscuits. They’re not flaky like these layered biscuits, but they’re ready in minutes with almost no handling at all.
Can you freeze these biscuits?
Yes! All of my gluten free biscuit recipes can be frozen, it’s just a matter of when you freeze them. These cream cheese buttermilk biscuits can be frozen raw, after they’re shaped and before the tops are brushed with milk.
Just freeze them fully on the baking sheet, and pile them into a freezer-safe container until you’re ready to bake them—then brush and bake from frozen. You’ll have to add a few minutes to the baking time, but it’ll be less added time than you think.
You can also freeze these biscuits after they’re baked and cooled. Keep in mind that it’s even more important to wrap each individual biscuit very tightly in a freezer-safe wrap. They’re more likely to take on freezer burn after they’re baked and cooled than when they’re frozen raw.
Ingredients and substitutions
Dairy-free: Making cream cheese buttermilk biscuits without dairy is a tall order, but good news! I think it’s possible. In place of the butter, I recommend using half (4 tablespoons) Earth Balance buttery sticks and half (4 tablespoons) Spectrum nonhydrogenated vegetable shortening. Both fats should be chilled, but you can’t chill the shortening too much or it will become rock solid.
In place of the cream cheese, if you have a favorite nondairy cream cheese alternative, try using that. You may have to use less moisture (from the buttermilk; more on that in a moment) since nondairy cream cheese tends to be softer.
In place of buttermilk, try using plain nondairy yogurt for half of the volume and unsweetened nondairy milk for the other half. Add the liquid slowly, though, since your buttermilk may be thinner than the original.
Corn-free: In place of cornstarch, you can try using arrowroot powder. Potato starch is also a pretty good substitute for cornstarch, although it’s even lighter.
Sugar-free: Just leave out the granulated sugar, and you’ll have a sugar-free biscuit. It just helps round out the flavor of the biscuits, but it’s not necessary for structure or even tenderness of the biscuits.
This easy whipped JELLO-style gelatin recipe with a mousse-like texture and fresh fruit flavor is the perfect no-bake easy, light dessert for warmer months.
Whipped gelatin is so easy to make, and it tastes like a fruit-based strawberry mousse (if you choose that flavor, as I did). It’s so light and refreshing and can be made as sweet or as tart as you like. Try stirring some fresh fruit slices into the mixture after whipping it with cream and you’ve got a 4-ingredient showstopper of a dessert.
Is JELLO gluten free?
JELLO brand treats are made by Kraft Heinz company, which practices “truth in labeling.” That means that, if there’s an allergen present in their products, they will disclose that allergen in their ingredient labeling.
There are currently no gluten-containing ingredients in JELLO gelatin (always check individual product labels for the most current information). However, the mixes are not certified gluten free. It’s up to you and your family to decide whether it’s safe to enjoy JELLO products on a gluten free diet.
What is JELLO-style gelatin made of?
Each flavor of JELLO gelatin, of course, has its own list of ingredients. But the main components of any JELLO gelatin mix are sugar, gelatin, flavorings, coloring, and preservatives.
It’s so incredibly easy to make your own classic JELLO-style fruit gelatin, though. The gelatin is rehydrated in water, then mixed into a hot liquid to melt, mixed together and then cooled until set.
You can make it any flavor you like, and even just use fruit juice and powdered unflavored gelatin without additional fruit purees or flavorings. My favorite base juice to use in making gelatin is apple juice since it’s very neutral-tasting.
Pineapple juice also makes great gelatin, with another flavor added or not. Be careful about adding fresh fruit to your gelatin before it sets, though, since fresh pineapple, kiwi, mango, papaya, or mango will make it difficult for your gelatin to set properly.
How to make whipped JELLO-style gelatin
Whipped gelatin can be made from a packaged JELLO gelatin mix, but here we’re making it entirely from scratch. The only real difference in making it from scratch is that you need your own flavoring and your own powdered gelatin.
For flavoring, I like to use freeze-dried fruit that I’ve ground into a fine powder in a simple blender. Nearly every type of fruit is now sold in freeze-dried form, and it allows me to add plenty of natural color and flavoring to the gelatin.
When I first made this recipe, I used apple juice instead of water. Even when I used less granulated sugar in the recipe, the final whipped gelatin was overly sweet. I really prefer to use water, and then control the sweetness with granulated sugar. But feel free to tweak the recipe to your preference.
Like regular homemade gelatin, to make whipped gelatin, simply rehydrate unflavored powdered gelatin in a bit of liquid and allow it to swell. Heat most of the remaining water in a saucepan until simmering, then add the sugar and freeze-dried fruit powder. Next, add the swelled gelatin and melt it in the hot liquid.
Transfer the hot mixture to a mixing bowl, and add a bit more cold water to help cool everything down. Chill the gelatin until it begins to set. The mixture will move slowly and begin to cling to the sides of the bowl.
Then, whip the gelatin until it lightens in color and begins to increase in volume. Add some cream and whip again, then just transfer to serving dishes and refrigerate until fully set.
Ingredients and substitutions
Freeze-dried fruit: I usually buy freeze-dried fruit in packets from my local Trader Joe’s. They have lots of types of fruit, and it’s at a pretty good price. Then, I grind it in my blender until it’s a fine powder.
You can also buy freeze-dried fruit from other brands, both in grocery stores and online. You can even purchase freeze-dried fruit already in powdered form on nuts.com, but it’s super expensive. I’d rather grind my own.
If you’d prefer to make this recipe without freeze-dried fruit, you certainly can. Just follow the instructions for making homemade JELLO-style gelatin here, and allow it to begin to set and follow the rest of this recipe as written.
Cream: If you’d like to make this recipe dairy-free, that should be easy enough. Just replace the heavy-whipping cream with chilled canned coconut cream.
You can either buy coconut cream alone in a can or buy full-fat coconut milk and chill the can in the refrigerator overnight. The cream will separate from the liquid and you can scoop off some cream to use in this recipe.
Sugar: If you’d like to avoid using refined, granulated sugar in this recipe, you can make your JELLO-style gelatin base using a naturally sweetened fruit juice. You can also replace the granulated sugar with an equal amount, by volume, of honey.
You can also increase or decrease the sweetness of this recipe as you like. The gelatin is what sets the mixture, not the sugar. You could even make this recipe without any sweetener at all (although I don’t think it would taste very good!).
These super crisp gluten free parmesan crackers, made with Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and cornmeal, are perfect for snacking, packing in lunches, or serving as an appetizer.
Of all the crackers I’ve made, the most requested are the buttery Ritz-style gluten free crackers since they are truly perfect. These Parmesan crackers are much crunchier and have a deeper, richer flavor, though.
I made them rather small, but you can make them bigger and serve them with wine and cheese. Or even use a pastry cutter, pizza wheel, or even a bench scraper to cut the dough into squares or rectangles, which would be a much faster way to go.
The Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese helps give them a true depth of flavor, and the cornmeal gives them that bite. They have a surprisingly small amount of butter, but the extra butter brushed on top before sprinkling plenty of coarse salt really helps them taste buttery.
Don’t forget to poke some holes on top of the crackers before baking, since that helps them to crisp as they bake. Get those nice, round holes in the dough by poking a toothpick in straight and then moving it around in tiny circles to widen the hole.
What are your favorite packaged gluten free crackers?
There are so many brands of packaged gluten free crackers available today. Even Nabisco makes a gluten free variety called “Good Thins,” so you know we’ve really gone mainstream.
I’d like to do a round-up product review post of the very best packaged gluten free crackers since I don’t make my own crackers from scratch every time we feel like having a cracker. (I’m a normal person, after all, even though I do spend all day every day in the kitchen!).
So far, I really like the Nabisco Good Thins, but also Lance brand crackers (my kids love the peanut butter sandwich crackers), and we love nearly everything that Schar makes. I really don’t care for Mary’s Gone Crackers brand, but that’s just personal preference.
What’s your favorite brand of packaged gluten free cracker? I’d love to know what else I should try. I also have about 10 different brands of packaged gluten free pretzels to share with you soon. As always, I will purchase the products with my own cash money, as I don’t accept any free product from anyone (much to my children’s confusion).
In this recipe, I use a brand of buttermilk powder called Saco. In my experience, it’s readily available in most larger grocery stores. It’s the canister with the jolly chef on it. I bet you’ve seen it before.
Buttermilk powder really adds richness to these crackers without adding any moisture which can keep them from crisping up in the oven. Despite the instructions on the canister of buttermilk powder, though, I don’t find that it makes a good substitute for liquid buttermilk when that’s called for in a recipe like our gluten free birthday cake.
I use buttermilk powder exclusively in its powder form as an addition to the dry ingredients in a recipe like this one, where I’m trying to add complexity to the flavor. In place of buttermilk powder, you can use an equal amount (by weight) nonfat dry milk powder.
Ingredients and substitutions
Dairy-free: These crackers have a few different forms of dairy, and some are harder to replace than others. In place of butter, you can try using Earth Balance buttery sticks (for the butter in the crackers, and the brushed butter on top).
For a dairy-free replacement for buttermilk or dry milk powder, try using coconut milk powder. I really like Native Forest brand, although I haven’t tried it in this particular recipe. The liquid cow’s milk can be replaced with your favorite brand of unsweetened nondairy milk. The hardest form of dairy to replace is Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. These are Parmesan Crackers, after all.
I have a sneaking suspicion that you could replace the finely grated cheese with nutritional yeast which does tend to have a cheesy flavor. Pay careful attention to the moisture content of the mixture, though, if you do use nutritional yeast. You may have to add more milk.
Corn-free: There is almost exactly as much yellow cornmeal here as there is all purpose gluten free flour, so it’s a major component of the recipe. I like coarsely ground cornmeal here the best since it really adds great texture and chew.
If you’d like to replace the cornmeal, you can try using millet flour, which has a similar texture. I’m afraid I haven’t tried anything like that, though, so I can’t be sure.
This recipe for gluten free peanut butter chocolate chip cookies is your standard thick and chewy cookie. It’s slightly crisp on the very edges, and you taste the peanut butter, brown sugar, vanilla, and chocolate chips the most.
The all purpose gluten free flour blend is made mostly with rice flour, and it has no real taste or obvious texture. That rice flour blend behaves just like all purpose wheat flour would in a similar recipe.
But I am mindful of the fact that a truly finely ground white rice flour can be difficult to find, at least when you’re brand new to gluten free baking. So I’ve developed a recipe for peanut butter oatmeal chocolate chip cookies that are made without any rice flour at all. Those cookies have a more complex flavor than this one, and you might want to try them both!
Baking gluten free with peanut butter
What is “no stir” peanut butter?
This recipe, like nearly all of my recipes for baking with peanut butter, calls for a “no stir” smooth peanut butter. “No stir” just refers to the kind of jarred peanut butter that doesn’t require you to stir it to reincorporate the peanut oils that have separated from the rest of the nut butter.
Most conventional brands of peanut butter are no-stir unless they’re truly “natural” peanut butter that is made with nothing more than peanuts and salt. That kind tastes great but behaves very differently in baking.
Is peanut butter gluten free?
As we discussed in detail in our recipe for plain flourless peanut butter cookies, most brands of commerical peanut butter are naturally gluten free. Some brands, like Jif, will label its peanut butter (and other products) “gluten free” if it fit the U.S. definition of “gluten free,” but may have been prepared on manufacturing equipment that has been shared with gluten-containing products.
Most types of Skippy peanut butter are gluten free, except for those that contain other ingredients. That’s the brand that I buy the most. The safest peanut butter brands only make gluten free varieties, like Peanut Butter & Co., but they’re pricey.
Can you replace peanut butter with Nutella?
You can’t replace peanut butter with Nutella in a baking recipe (or Nutella with peanut butter). I’ve tried! But I’ve been doing some switching back and forth between baking with peanut butter and baking with Nutella and I think I’ve cracked the code.
Nutella is nut butter, but it has lots more sugar in it than even any commercial peanut butter (part of its charm, no doubt). We made 3 ingredient Nutella brownies, and they were a complete failure when I attempted to replace Nutella with peanut butter. The oil from the peanut butter separated during baking and the result went right into the compost heap.
We were able to make a version of those Nutella brownies with peanut butter by adding some brown sugar to the peanut butter. They turned into 4 ingredient peanut butter brownies.
I bet you could do something similar in this recipe by reducing the brown sugar in this recipe by at least half and replacing the peanut butter with about 3/4 cup of Nutella. It would take some experimentation, but I think it would be worth it!
Ingredients and substitutions
Dairy-free: The only real dairy in these cookies is the butter. If you’d like to replace the butter, try using half (4 tablespoons) Earth Balance buttery sticks and half (4 tablespoons) Spectrum brand nonhydrogenated vegetable shortening.
In my experience, that combination mimics the behavior of butter in cooking-baking best. Be sure to use dairy-free chocolate chips, too.
Egg-free: There are two eggs in this recipe, which is the upper limit for replacing eggs with “chia eggs” (each “chia egg” is 1 tablespoon ground white chia seeds mixed with 1 tablespoon water and allowed to gel). I haven’t tried that substitute here, though, so I’m not sure how well it would work.
Corn-free: The cornstarch in this recipe is used to lighten up the all purpose gluten free flour blend and make chewier cookies. In place of cornstarch, you can try using arrowroot powder.
Another note about cornstarch: If you’re already using a higher-starch all purpose gluten free flour blend like Cup4Cup, replace the cornstarch with additional all purpose gluten free flour.
Peanut butter: If you need to make this recipe peanut-free, you can replace the peanut butter with an equal amount of smooth, no-stir smooth almond butter (Barney Butter is a favorite brand) or cashew butter.
Gluten free pancakes mix that’s perfect for everything from pancakes and muffins to breakfast bakes. Ditch that box and D.I.Y. a better pancake!
Can you make gluten free pancakes without xanthan gum?
Gluten free pancakes are one of the few recipes that simply are better made with a super-simple 3-ingredient blend of gluten free flours (superfine white rice flour + potato starch + tapioca starch/flour). And even a wee bit of xanthan gum if you’re willing.
You can make pancakes with one of my all purpose gluten free flour blends, but they all have way more xanthan gum than we need here. That leads to a less delicate result than you’d expect from good pancakes—and pancake batter that is difficult to pour or spread into a round pancake shape.
Plus, the process of making pancakes with a lot of xanthan gum becomes a race against the clock. Xanthan gum absorbs lots of moisture and will continually cause the pancake batter to thicken as it stands. You’ll need to keep adding more milk.
A little added xanthan gum can help with “feathering”
So you have two choices to make a lovely mix for gluten free pancakes. You can add 1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum for every 1 1/2 cups of the 3-ingredient flour blend (technically, 1/6 teaspoon per cup of flour blend), and have essentially the most perfect pancake mix ever that can be used anywhere you’d use a pancake mix like Bisquick.
You can skip the xanthan gum altogether, use a bit less milk in general and have thinner, slightly more delicate pancakes. I’ve made this recipe every which way. I believe that using the optional xanthan gum in the basic 3-ingredient flour blend is the way to go.
That bit of xanthan gum makes for the perfect, pourable pancake batter that isn’t too thick and isn’t too thin. The pancakes hold their shape with no “feathering” around the edges, and they’re not too thick, not too thin.
If you prefer thinner pancakes, add more milk by the tablespoon until you get the batter just the way you like it.
How to use this mix
A pancake mix like Bisquick is generally considered quite versatile, for all sorts of recipes like gluten free cookies, crackers and even scones. And this mix works just like the store-bought kind. Bisquick does make a gluten free mix, actually, but it’s gritty and really awful.
How to make pancake bites or muffins using this mix
Use it to make these little pancake bites, which are simple but delicious mini muffins. You can leave the pancake bites plain, or scatter each with a teaspoon of chopped fresh strawberries, sliced bananas, miniature chocolate chips (!) or a simple granola-type mix. They all bake at the same rate whether they have toppings or not, so you can alternate toppings—or even make them into larger muffins.
They all bake at the same rate whether they have toppings or not, so you can alternate toppings—or even make them into larger muffins. Oh how I love a grab-and-go breakfast. Or maybe you had a favorite recipe that you made with Bisquick before you went gluten free. Use this mix in that recipe.
How to make classic pancakes using this mix
Making pancakes from this mix is as easy as making pancakes using any mix. Just add milk and an egg to the dry ingredients, pour on a hot, greased griddle and wait to flip.
If you’re adding a touch of xanthan gum to the recipe, as I prefer to do, you’ll need a bit more milk as directed in the recipe instructions below. The recipe doesn’t call for enough xanthan gum to thicken the batter so much that it’s no longer pourable, but you’ll still find that the batter thickens as it stands.
If you prefer slightly thicker pancakes, continue to whisk the batter and wait about 7 or 8 minutes before pouring the batter onto the griddle. For thinner pancakes like you see in the photo just above, have the hot, greased griddle waiting and begin to pour it soon after everything is fully combined.
Looking for more gluten free baking mixes?
Did you know that my second book, GFOAS Quick & Easy, with a whole chapter on Make-Your-Own mixes for everything from gluten free cakes and cookies to muffins, scones, and brownies?
Since I believe in the power of easy breakfast ideas, not to mention a good breakfast-for-dinner night now and again, this recipe for a simple mix for gluten free pancakes comes in very, very handy. Make the easy dry mix ahead of time, add just two ingredients and you’ll have simple, classic pancakes in minutes.
Ingredients and substitutions
Luckily, this recipe only calls for a few ingredients: a 3-ingredient flour blend (white rice flour, potato starch, tapioca starch/flour), (optional) xanthan gum, baking powder, baking soda, salt, granulated sugar (just a touch, but you can actually leave it out if you prefer), milk, eggs, and butter (if making pancake muffins/bites). Here are my suggestions for how to replace some of those ingredients, if you have additional dietary restrictions:
Dairy-free: In the pancake recipe, the only dairy is cow’s milk. Simply replace the cow’s milk with your favorite non-dairy milk from a carton (not a can). My favorite is unsweetened almond milk.
In the pancake bites, there is also some melted butter. That can easily be replaced with Earth Balance buttery sticks, Spectrum brand butter-flavored nonhydrogenated vegetable shortening, or virgin coconut oil, each melted and cooled.
Egg-free: If you’re egg-free, I’d actually recommend that you use a different pancake recipe. You can of course still use the dry mix, as it’s naturally egg-free.
For egg-free pancakes, I think you’ll really love my vegan gluten free pancakes recipe. You could also use that vegan recipe to make pancake bites in a similar matter to that directed here.
Turn your favorite fruit of the season into a show-stopping dessert with this master gluten free crumble recipe.
(This recipe works best for less fibrous summer fruits, like fresh berries and stone fruits. If you’d like to make an apple crumble, I have a separate recipe for that.)
Crisp or a crumble
Fruit crisps and fruit crumbles are basically the same things. Each is a deceptively simple dessert with a fruit base and a crisp-tender buttery topping baked together to perfection.
Originally, a fruit dessert was considered a crisp only if it had oats and/or nuts added since they would “crisp” during baking. A crumble was denser and nubbier. But they both have crisp edges and tender centers, and each can be made with or without oats, so the names tend to be used interchangeably now.
Crumble topping recipe
Many of the crumble topping recipes that you’ll find are made more like a pastry, with cold, grated or diced butter in the mixture. I find that the easiest way to make a crisp topping with plenty of lumps of different sizes is to melt the butter and mix it into a mixture of flour, oats, sugars, and salt.
When you mixed melted butter into the dry ingredients and sugars, and then refrigerate the mixture, you can break up the crumble topping into whatever sizes and shapes you like. I like the topping to have very small crumbs, slightly larger ones, and some really large pieces.
How to make a berry crumble
A berry crumble can be made with any type of berry, but strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries work best. I don’t love baking with blackberries since the seeds don’t soften that much during baking, and the added texture can be unpleasant.
To make a berry crumble when berries are in season, use fresh fruit if you can. Taste each type of raw fruit, and see how sweet it is.
If you’re in the heart of berry season and the fruit is super ripe and juicy, feel free to reduce the amount of sugar in the recipe. If your fruit is nearly overripe, you can still use it but add another tablespoon (9 g) of tapioca starch to the filling recipe.
You can still make a berry crumble in the middle of the winter using frozen fruit. Frozen fruit is often of the very best quality since it’s frozen right when it’s at its peak.
Don’t defrost frozen fruit before using it, though. The filling is best when the fruit melts quickly in the hot oven. When you’re using frozen strawberries, avoid the largest berries since you won’t be able to slice them in half before adding them to the filling.
How to make a stone fruit crumble
I don’t ever remove the skin on stone fruits before baking with them. After having made fresh homemade baby food for all 3 of my kids for years, I know how time-consuming that process can be—and the skin of stone fruit like peaches, nectarines, and apricots is very soft and tender when the fruit is raw, and even more so after baking.
In this recipe, I used mostly peaches and apricots, with some plums. The skin of plums is tougher than other stone fruits, but it softens significantly after baking.
You really can use any combination of stone fruits you like, and frozen stone fruits work just as well (if not better) than fresh. Like in a berry crumble, don’t defrost the fruit before baking or it will release too much of its liquid.
Pay particular attention to the sweetness of your stone fruits by tasting them raw. If they seem overly tart, add some more sugar to the filling.
Taste with a clean spoon as you go, and make sure you’d eat the filling raw as the flavors will only intensify during baking. Peaches are generally better for baking than nectarines since they tend to be softer and sweeter, but nectarines will work, too.
Ingredients and substitutions
Dairy-free: The only dairy in this recipe is in the butter that is used to make the crumble topping. Butter does a great job of creating a nubby, bumpy crumble that is crisp and tender but holds its shape.
If you were to use Earth Balance buttery sticks in place of butter, it would probably melt too much during baking. I’d recommend trying a mix of Earth Balance and Spectrum brand nonhydrogenated vegetable shortening.
Tapioca starch: Tapioca starch is the best thickener to use in the filling recipe, to help absorb some of the juices that the fruit produces as it bakes. You can use cornstarch in its place, but cornstarch tends to leak when it cools so I prefer tapioca starch.
If you can’t have oats or want to avoid them for any reason, you can replace the oats in this recipe with an equal amount, by weight, of chopped pecans or cashews. Softer nuts will help add bulk and texture, like oats.