If you’re going gluten-free but still want to whip up a cake or two, have a look at our must-read 8 gluten-free beginners baking tips.
Set Your Expectations
Gluten-free bakes are never going to be the same as their gluten-rich cousins. That’s not to say they’re worse or inferior – just different. As long as you don’t expect the same results as baking with gluten, you’re good to go.
Don’t mess around with the recipes
Or at least, not at first. As a newbie gluten-free baker, follow the recipe to the letter. Get to know your ingredients first, then experiment to your heart’s content when you’re confident with your bakes.
Try different flours
There’s lots of gluten-free flours to choose from nowadays – brown rice, buckwheat, quinoa and teff, to name but a few – so try lots of different recipes and find the flours that suit your taste.
Practice with pancakes
Start simple: whip up your favourite pancake recipe. It’s a cheap and quick way to try out new flours and ingredients. Find out what works.
Keep it small
Without gluten, bigger bakes struggle to keep their shape. Instead, keep the mixture the same but separate it out into smaller pans and tins so it’s easier for the bake to rise.
No need to knead
When baking sans-gluten, it’s important you don’t overmix, knead or beat your dough. Dough is worked to activate the gluten and get the bake rising. So with gluten-free dough – there’s not only no need, but kneading can actually stop the dough rising properly.
Get it in the freezer
On baking day, gluten-free foods are delicious. However, they have a tendency to turn dry and crumbly quite quickly. Pop leftover bakes into the freezer and, when you’re ready for round two, warm them in the oven – they’ll taste as good as new.
If it all goes wrong, put your bake in your food processor and make sweet or savoury crumbs. You can always add it to other bakes and dishes down the line.