Overwhelmed by all the gluten free flour mixes on the market? Here’s a list of our favorites, along with proven recipes for each so you can get back into the kitchen and enjoy fresh baked goods!
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Flour is the staple of baking, and just because you’re living a gluten free lifestyle doesn’t mean you have to give up on having fresh, homemade baked goods! Gluten free products have come a LONG way in the past few years, and there are so many great options to help you achieve the results you want when you’re baking your favorite goodies. We make an effort to try every gluten free flour we can, and here you will find our favorites and what we use them for. What is your favorite gluten free flour blend?
Do you purchase pre-made blends or make your own? Let us know in the comments!
A few quick notes about gluten free flour:
- There is no one size fits all when it comes to gluten free flours. A lot of people I talk to are looking for one flour that does it all. While there are many great flour mixes (listed below!) that I love and I could use any of them for most baked goods, I do keep a few of them on hand all the time and use them for different types of recipes. I’ve included below the recipes on this site that work particularly well with each flour blend.
- Let’s talk about gluten. Gluten is the binding agent in regular flour that holds your baked goods together. Gluten free flours do not, obviously, contain gluten so they are prone to being crumbly and dry if you don’t add some sort of binding agent. Most gluten free products have either xanthan gum or guar gum to accomplish this. I’ve used both, and have found that while xanthan gum is a little (not a lot) more expensive than guar gum, it seems to do a better job while using less in your recipes, so the price ends up pretty equal. Adding a binder isn’t optional. Go ahead and try it if you don’t believe me 😉 Some people are sensitive to xanthan and/or guar gum and use different binding agents such as psyllium husk or ground flax. Other natural binders are eggs, and bananas. If you finished product has a gummy texture, you have added too much of a binding agent to your recipe. I’ve noticed that in recipes that include a lot of eggs, I need less xanthan gum. There is a sliding scale for the amount of xanthan you need: 1/4 tsp per cup of gf flour for cookies, 1/2 tsp for cakes/muffins/quick breads, 1 tsp for yeast products (bread, pizza dough, etc.) This ties back to #1. I find gfJules has just the right amount of xanthan for bread products to make them turn out absolutely perfect. If I’m making biscuits, I prefer to use Gluten Free Mama’s so I can add the exact amount of xanthan I need for a tender, flaky outcome.
- Disclaimer: I’m not a physician or medical expert, please choose flours that you feel safe consuming and that will meet your personal needs.
On to our favorite flour blends!
This particular blend has been a staple in our house for several years. The addition of just enough almond flour gives your baked goods additional rise and helps with texture. You won’t even notice the almonds are there.
Gluten Free Mama flours have no added xanthan. This means you’ll have to purchase xanthan gum to add to your recipes. Some people like the convenience of having xanthan included in the flour mix, but some recipes (ie biscuits) do better when you add a custom amount of xanthan. There is a sliding scale for how much xanthan (or guar) gum is required depending on the type of recipe you’re making, IE if you’re baking cookies, you only need about 1/4 tsp gum per cup of flour BUT if you’re baking a loaf of bread, you’ll need 1 tsp gum per cup of flour. Also, recipes with more eggs or bananas or other natural binding agents such as these will require less xanthan gum. Some people don’t tolerate xanthan and/or guar gum, so this would be a great option for them. That being said, many people prefer having a mix with the gum already added because it’s easier that way annnnnd you don’t have to worry about forgetting to add that ever important ingredient (personal experience much?)
Gluten Free Mama also makes a Coconut Blend which we have used as well. It makes great pancakes and you can use it for pretty much anything you use the almond blend for, we just prefer the taste and texture of the almond blend.
Contains: nuts (almonds). Shared facility with milk.
We recently discovered this one and it quickly jumped to our favorites list. Thrive is a freeze dried food storage company based in UT, they were previously known by Shelf Reliance in case that rings a bell with you. I knew nothing about it until a few months ago when a friend introduced me. We’ve been trying to build our food storage but it can be so hard with dietary restrictions so I was intrigued and checked into it. Thrive has over 140 certified gluten free options that are safe for my food allergic hubby and he has had no reactions. While they offer everything from fruits, veggies, and quinoa to gf cookie mixes and gravies (all of which we’ve loved), I was skeptical of the flour. Could they really pull it off? We were oh so pleasantly surprised. It’s not gritty (helllllllo cookies!) and we’ve also made pancakes, muffins, and even sandwich bread with it. Another bonus is that it has a 6 month shelf life once opened, and a 5 YEAR shelf life until you open it. That’s a long time for gluten free flour!
Contains: no major allergens. Be aware that all Thrive products are made in a facility which also handles milk, egg, soy, wheat and tree nut products. I have toured their facility and they have a separate room for all their gluten free products, the doors are clearly labeled with what can and cannot come into the room, employees wash hands, change gloves and aprons before coming in. All equipment is washed and sanitized between each product run. The gluten free flour and 147 other products are all certified gluten free.
This is a long-standing favorite of ours, as it is for many people. Here’s a few things we love about GF Jules products: First off, Jules Shepard has been at this for a long time. She knows her stuff, she eats gluten free herself, and she has an abundance of products, recipes, tutorials, and gluten free information on her site (really, if you haven’t checked it out yet, do so!). She’s a go-to resource for everything gluten free. GF Jules products are certified gluten free and are also free from nuts which is a biggie for a lot of people. The first time I tried her flour to make a simple white sauce, I was hooked. It is the perfect substitute for regular flour in sauces, gravies, breadings, and anything else like that. It’s also great for baked goods like breads, cookies, etc.
A few recipes that work well with this flour: Crescent Rolls * Homestyle Macaroni and Cheese * Soft Garlic Breadsticks * Coca Cola Cupcakes * Sandwich Bread * Okonomiyaki (Japanese Pancakes) * Better-Than-Ding-Dongs Cake
Tree Street Grains
This is a great healthy alternative to traditional rice-based blends. It’s made completely of whole grains with no added starch. It has a stronger flavor too, as is customary with whole grain blends. We use it for recipes that turn out well with a heartier flour such as pancakes and still have some experimenting to do. I love it because I can feel good about feeding it to the whole family without anyone having to feel like we’re eating a piece of stale cardboard 😉 Tree Street Grains gluten free flour states on the packages that it is manufactured in a dedicated gluten free facility, but it isn’t currently certified.
Recipes that work well with this flour: Diner Pancakes We still have some experimenting to do 😉
Cup4Cup is another great brand that is available at a lot of grocery stores, which is convenient if you need to replenish your flour supply and don’t have the time to wait for something to be shipped to you. We’ve had a lot of success using Cup4Cup in baked goods and they also came out with a Wholesome Flour Blend that I’ve been wanting to try.
Contains: milk and corn