Gluten Free

Apple Cranberry Bars
Flourless Monster Cookies
Pumpkin Almond Butter Bars
Pumpkin Granola Bars

What is Gluten Free and Why Do I Bake GF?

Gluten Free is a diet, either by choice or necessity (in most cases, necessity), that eliminates all gluten. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley and other grains that creates structure in bread, baked goods and the like. It's found in any products containing wheat, like spaghetti noodles, bread, flour tortillas, cupcakes, donuts, basically all of the good stuff. Things that don't contain gluten are rice, quinoa and oatmeal. (However, oatmeal is commonly processed in facilities with flour, so it's cross contaminated and therefore gluten freers have to buy "gluten free oats.") Gluten is my bread and butter, literally. Without it, I couldn't make cakes that rise or cookies with that delicious chew.

The sad part is my 18-year-old sister has to eat gluten free. She's had stomach problems her whole life, and finally said enough is enough and cut out gluten. It was an immediate success. However, she mourned the loss of good desserts. Because the gluten is so important in cakes, gluten-free cakes use a variety of flours and binders and things to make the cakes more stable. But sometimes these well-intentioned cakes are atrociously dry.

I've tried a few recipes for Brynn, including flourless monster cookies which were fabulous. I've made granola bars and the like. I don't know if I'll ever tackle a full gluten free cake since they're extremely fussy, but I do have the handy-dandy Cake Mix Doctor Bakes Gluten Free cookbook and I will definitely be making boxed but doctored cakes for her. (I know, it's against every rule in the book, but I prefer traditional cakes.) However, that doesn't mean there isn't science behind baking gluten, so eventually I will try my hand at it and post about all of the sciency things. Just not now, and specifically not in my tiny kitchen with limited resources (gluten free is expensive, ya'll.)

However, enjoy these gluten free recipes.



  1. Dear Brita,
    As you may have since discovered, Pamela's Artisan Blend GF Flour makes absolutely wonderful cakes. I simply do an even flour substitution, though I skimp a little when measuring the GF flour. It works so well, I make sure NOT to keep it on hand or I would be constantly eating cake!

  2. Hi! Yes, Pamela's is great! My mom uses it for pancakes quite frequently!