Baking Tips/FAQs

SURVIVAL GUIDE FOR FOLKS WHO ARE RECENTLY DIAGNOSED GLUTEN-FREE

GLUTEN-FREE SURVIVAL TIPS

GLUTEN-FREE BAKING TIPS/FAQS

Story Behind My Gluten-Free Flour Mix
-includes the recipe for my mix

Answers About/Substitutions For Jeanne’s Gluten-Free Flour Mix
-where to get the flours and xanthan gum
-tips for a grain-free mix
-nut flours
-coconut flour
-tapioca flour and substitutes
-table w/price breakdown of my mix

Troubleshooting Baking Problems
-start here if things aren’t working for you
-includes High Altitude baking tips

Sourdough Starter /Bread Troubleshooting FAQ

Ingredient Substitutions (w/Substitution Recommendations)
-including subs for flours, dairy, eggs, yeast, and xanthan gum

Gluten-Replacers in Gluten-Free Baking
-including info on xanthan gum, guar gum, and psyllium, flax, and chia seeds
-table on xanthan gums from various companies

Self-Rising Flour, Gluten-Free

Baking Powder
-how it’s different from baking soda
-how it works
-the difference between single and double-acting
-how to tell if it is gluten-free
-chart of baking powders in US, Canada, and UK, and their ingredients

Is It Better To Measure By Volume or Weight in Baking?
-addresses the issues for home bakers

Know Your Oven’s Real Temperature (use an Oven Thermometer)

Bread Machines Tips
-info on making my bread in bread machines

Practice Makes Perfect

Bring Your Mixing Bowls to Room Temperature

Fluffy Batter Means a Lighter Cake

Pan Sizes Chart

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Stephanie Cohen January 17, 2013 at 12:29 pm

Do you have any info about how long your baking mix can be stored? I read that it should be kept in the fridge, but I would like to make some ahead to keep on hand.

Jeanne January 17, 2013 at 1:19 pm
ann December 19, 2012 at 5:20 am

I can’t wait to try some of your recipes – I currently have King Arthur GF flour on hand, can I successfully substitute their blend for your blend?

Thanks

Jeanne December 19, 2012 at 11:15 am

Ann: Yes, that would be fine. Be sure to add about 1/4 teaspoon of xanthan cup per cup of flour–the KA mix doesn’t have xanthan gum. Happy baking!

Kim December 16, 2012 at 9:23 am

Hello,

I am sure you have gotten this question a zillion times! But, I am having a tough time finding ANYTHING which explains what Gluten-Free baked goods can be made ahead, how to store them, and for how long. what baked goods can be made ahead and how to store them. The only thing I am finding are individual recipes.

Can you please tell me if there is a website I can go to which has a breakdown for this?

Jeanne December 18, 2012 at 10:46 am

Kim: This is a very good question–and it’s a huge topic. In fact, I will work on a post about this. There is no one answer. It is different for each recipe. One of the problems is that gluten lengthens the shelf life of baked goods. Therefore, our expectations of how long things should last is based on that. Gluten-free things tend to have a much shorter shelf life. And they tend not to do very well stored in the fridge. Many things (especially cookies) can be made ahead, cooled, and then frozen. Cakes and quick breads have their own properties–but most do OK when made ahead, cooled, wrapped and frozen. Thank you for brining this up!

Judy December 12, 2012 at 12:25 pm

I was wondering if it is possible to substitute sweet white sorghum flour, for sweet white rice in your flour blend? Would this flour work for a short crust pastry?

Jeanne December 13, 2012 at 1:42 pm

Judy: Yes, that would be fine. The resulting mix would be a bit more “gritty” but that’s OK. And yes, it will work on the short crust pastry. :) Happy baking!

Jeanette Hughes November 12, 2012 at 10:13 am

I recently found your blog and cookbook, and am so excited I did! I run a small bakery from my home kitchen and have had several requests for gluten-free products. To avoid cross-contamination, do you recommend that I have a separate set of baking utensils that I use strictly for gluten-free baking?

Jeanne November 12, 2012 at 2:10 pm

Jeanette: I do recommend using a separate set that is clearly labeled so you and your employees don’t get confused and use the wheat utensils on the gluten-free stuff, etc. One bakery I know wrapped green tape around everything they used for gluten-free–that way there was a quick and easy reminder. I don’t think you necessarily need to use a different mixer if you are committed to scrubbing the whole thing each night. I usually recommend to bakeries that they do their gluten-free baking first thing in the morning, that way the wheat flour isn’t floating in the air. :)

Jeanette Hughes November 12, 2012 at 3:15 pm

Thanks for the quick answer! Marking the items with colored tape is an excellent idea. And thanks for the tip about not having the wheat flour floating in the air – I hadn’t thought of that. :)

Jeanne November 13, 2012 at 7:11 am

Jeanette: You’re welcome. Yeah, the wheat flour in the air is a big contaminant. Bleh.

Stephanie Cohen January 17, 2013 at 12:25 pm

I once had a reaction from sitting in an Italian restaurant for New Years Eve with the family. I didn’t eat a thing on purpose and still ended up in the hospital for the evening. Not fun.

Jeanette Larson September 4, 2012 at 6:16 pm

So glad to discover your site. People at the Celiac’s booth at the MN State fair told me about it. Any experience or luck using wild rice flour? Other than pancakes haven’t tried it yet, but would like bread, bisquits or crust recipes. THANKS, Jeanette Larson

admin September 4, 2012 at 9:15 pm

Jeanette: I haven’t tried wild rice flour–I didn’t even know about it. I”m guessing it would be like brown rice flour? Maybe a bit more flavorful? If you try it, let me know what you think!

Deanna Brooks July 18, 2012 at 7:45 am

Last Thanksgiving I made your yeast rolls for our family dinner…one grandson and a daughter-in-law are GF. My younger son (her husband) said, “Mom, these rolls are better than any we’ve gotten at the GF stores!” I also made a flourless chocolate cake with a chocolate glaze, and the whole family gobbled it down…with more comments about it being better than any of the commercial products they’d eaten. I’m in the process of adding to my recipe file, as the request for various foods comes along. Thank you for sharing your knowledge with those of us who have family members eating GF!

admin July 22, 2012 at 5:35 pm

Deanna: Yay! I’m so glad!

Amy June 23, 2012 at 9:35 am

Jeanne, I want to give you a heartfelt thank you for your site and recipes. My mother was diagnosed with celiac disease 18 years ago, when it was much harder to find recipes and ingredients, so I watched her struggles during my late teens and early 20s. In my mid 30s I began having symptoms of gluten intolerance, and while my sensitivity is much less and I do not have celiac disease, it was a long road making the choice to go GF. I was anxious about having to go through the same difficulties as my mom had.

One of the things that has alleviated many of my concerns is your site. I love that I can get all the ingredients for your flour blend easily, that almost all of your recipes call for the same flour blend (I only have to keep four flours in stock, not 20!) and that your recipes are simple, fast, and most importantly, delicious. You’ve become my go-to resource for baking. Please keep doing what you do; it’s such an enormous help and such a wonderful resource.

admin June 25, 2012 at 10:05 am

Amy: Aw, thank you! I’m so glad my site is helpful for you! Thanks for the nice note!!

Nelda April 27, 2012 at 6:58 pm

I am so excited to find your website! My daughter just started a gluten-free diet per her doctor’s instructions and I wanted to bake something special for her birthday on Monday. She has requested a chess pie, so I am going to experiment with your recipe for the pie crust. I had already purchased gluten-free flour, so I will use it this time, but I am going to try your recipe for Jean’s Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Mix. Now I know she can still enjoy her favorite treats and we can celebrate her birthday in style!!!

admin May 2, 2012 at 12:46 pm

Nelda: Yay! I’m so glad!

Debbie January 11, 2012 at 7:27 am

Thank you so much for your website! My 24-year-old daughter was just diagnosed with celiac disease. She lives in another city but I have promised her that when she is home, our kitchen will be gluten free. For Thanksgiving I used your pie crust receipe and made pumpkin and french silk pies that were delicious and GF!

I do have a question for you. Do you keep your flour(s) and your all-purpose flour master mix in the freezer? I have had a couple of people tell me I should do this and I wonder why. I appreciate your insight and experience.

Again, thank you and I look forward to trying more of your recipes!

admin January 11, 2012 at 10:37 am

Debbie: The main issue in my mix with the brown rice flour. Since it is a whole grain flour, it will go rancid more quickly than the other flours. I no longer store my mix in the fridge because I use it so quickly. But, if you are going to mix it and then use it sporadically, I would recommend storing it in the fridge or the freezer for more long-term storage. This would be true of all whole grain flours (like sorghum, amaranth, etc.) Also, I’m so glad my site is helpful to you!! Yay!

CSW November 15, 2011 at 12:46 pm

I have general question and wasn’t sure where to ask it: you mention that you have a “life-threatening allergy to wheat” –does that mean you have to be extremely careful about cross-contamination, and if so, have you found a brand or supplier of sorghum and buckwheat that you consider safe? My husband is an extremely sensitive celiac and we’ve had bad experiences with buckwheat and we’re nervous about sorghum. Thanks! PS: thanks for sharing all these delightful recipes…

admin November 15, 2011 at 1:03 pm

CSW: I’m so glad the blog is helpful for you! Yes, I do have to be extremely careful about cross contamination. I use sorghum flour that is certified gluten-free from Authentic Foods or from Bob’s Red Mill–I’ve never reacted to either. I stopped used buckwheat flour years ago because I didn’t like the taste. I just did some quick research and realized that neither of those places has a gf version of buckwheat flour–which is odd. My advice would be to avoid buckwheat altogether until you can find a gf source. But, sorghum flour is easy to find gf and I like using it in my breads. PS: if you do find buckwheat flour that is gf, would you please let me know? Thanks!

CSW November 16, 2011 at 9:19 am

thanks…maybe I’m worrying too much about the sorghum, but it was actually Bob’s Red Mill whole buckwheat (labeled gluten-free) that we had a bad experience with (we found actual grains of wheat in it!!), so I’ve been scared to use their sorghum, and the Authentic Foods people didn’t reply to my questions about their supply chain. I’m glad to hear that you’ve never had problems with the sorghum flour –it really is the nicest gluten-free flour, in my opinion, and I’d love to try some of your delicious-sounding recipes that use it…

admin November 16, 2011 at 11:15 am

CSW: Eek! That’s scary. I imagine that is why thy no longer list their buckwheat products as gluten-free. So far, their gf sorghum flour has been fine for me. Authentic Foods is run by very few people, so I imagine that’s why they aren’t replying.

Kris November 12, 2011 at 6:47 pm

I live a mile high, do you have any suggestions for high altitude baking? I am so excited to find your site. My birthday is in 13 days. I have asked my husband for a cookie press. My 4 children are going to love the pressed butter cookies. I can’t wait to try the pie crust. Since I found out I have CD I have missed my grandmother’s chocolate pie that she handed down to me. Thank you!

admin November 13, 2011 at 12:17 pm

Kris: Oo, happy early birthday! I don’t have much experience with altitude baking, but my high-altitude readers have reported that baking at altitude is actually awesome for gluten-free bakers. It takes a lot of effort for gluten-free items to rise at sea level, so removing a bit of the pressure–which is what happens at high altitude–actually makes things rise easier and faster. This is less of an issue for cookies, but it is apparently terrific for cakes and breads. What this means is that you might find that it takes less time for you bread to rise, and less time for your cakes and breads to bake. Experiment and see what happens! And so exciting about the cookie press–I love mine!!

Susan Reid February 7, 2012 at 6:04 pm

Having just moved to a new home at 5,000 ft, my first baking experience for my family (not me) using wheat flour turned out rock-hard dinner rolls.
Your comments are very encouraging, because I want to get back to baking my own g-f buns/bread.
Are there any sites that specifically address high-altitude, gluten-free baking? I’ll give my GIG bun recipe a try.
Thanks so much for this informative, attractive website.

admin February 8, 2012 at 7:02 am

Susan: I don’t know of any sites that are altitude-focused. I have done a bit of research and it seems like altitude is actually quite friendly for gluten-free baking. As far as my readers can tell, things work better. And the rising times are less. So, go ahead with your regular recipes and just watch them as they rise/bake. Things may go more quickly that you are used to. And let me know how it goes! I’d be interested to know.

KD April 22, 2011 at 10:05 am

Just stumbled upon your site and man, oh man! My fiance and I are beyond excited to try your GF recipes. Thank you so much for all of your research and recipes. This is fantastic. What are your recommendations for cooking at altitude?

admin April 22, 2011 at 10:27 pm

KD: I’m so glad! Yay! From what my readers who live at high altitude tell me, baking gf at high altitude is actually awesome. Things rise higher and better there!

KD April 24, 2011 at 7:30 pm

Fabulous! One last question: we went searching for sweet rice flour and Mochiko, and we were unable to find it. Do you have any clues who would sell this in Denver, CO? Is it imperative that we have it for the flour mix?

admin April 24, 2011 at 9:40 pm

KD: You might find it under the name “glutinous rice flour.” It’s often available at Asian groceries. Or, you can buy white sweet rice and grind it fine in your blender. It’s an awfully helpful flour to have if you can find it. It’s also available via mail order. If you don’t find it, you might want to try potato flour (not potato starch).

cd November 19, 2010 at 4:30 am

Thank you so much. I am having a Guest for Thanksgiving and wanted to make her comfortable. Your website has inspired me to make sure my guest can enjoy the celebration as well as add a little less gluten for the rest of my family.

admin November 19, 2010 at 10:28 am

CD: Oh, I’m so glad! Happy Thanksgiving!

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