|A Special Valentine Treat – Elana’s Gluten-Free Almond Scones|
Although I’ve been baking since I was a child, I’m new to gluten-free baking. Over the past several years, I’ve been substituting white whole wheat flour and whole wheat pastry flour for white flour, used flax seeds in place of oil in recipes, and made a few recipes from Elana’s Almond Flour Cookbook. However, until recently, I had never baked gluten-free out of necessity. Now that I have a son with a gluten allergy, I have had to get up to speed quickly on gluten-free cooking and baking. Gluten-free cooking has been relatively easy compared to gluten-free baking for me, probably because I cook a lot more than I bake. Baking is also more precise, and since gluten-free baking requires using different types of flours and starches to get the right textures, this has been even more confusing to me.
I’ve stocked my pantry with lots of different gluten-free flours and starches, including almond flour, coconut flour, Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Baking Mix, sorghum flour, garbanzo and fava bean flour, tapioca starch, and potato starch.
|Here Are Some Gluten-Free Flours and Starches I’ve Stocked My Pantry With|
I’m not sure how I feel about the starches, but I think they’re needed to lighten up the heavier sorghum and garbanzo/fava bean flours.
So far, I’ve had fairly good success with most of these gluten-free flours; the only one I’m still finding a bit challenging is coconut flour. Coconut flour is very dense and absorbs a lot of liquid, and I’ve only found a few recipes that have worked well. Some of the muffins I made with coconut flour turned out with a “wet” texture. If you have any favorite gluten-free, yeast-free recipes for muffins, scones or quick-breads, I would love hear from you.
|Gluten-Free Pumpkin Scones|
– Gluten-Free Goddess’ Pumpkin Scones
– Elana’s Pantry’s Gluten-Free Almond Scones(usually, I leave out the chocolate chips to keep the sugar level low, but for Valentine’s Day, I added some dairy-free chocolate chips)
– The Healthy Cooking Coach’s Gluten-Free Pumpkin Muffins
– Spunky Coconut’s Gluten-Free Mini Blueberry Muffins (these were delicious, unfortunately, I deleted the picture of these by accident!)
|Gluten-Free Corn Muffins|
– Corn Muffins from Wheat Free, Gluten-Free Cookbook for Kids and Busy Adults (thank you Anna for sending me this book!)
– Gluten-Free/Dairy-Free/Egg-Free Cinnamon Spiced Scones I came up with based on a Cream Scone recipe I found in my Fannie Farmer Cookbook. These have become one of my son’s favorites.
In all of these recipes, I have substituted either a mixture of water and ground chia seeds or ground flax seeds for the eggs, and reduced the amount of sugar either by eliminating ingredients (e.g., chocolate chips, dried fruit) or reducing the amount of sweetener used. My sweeteners of choice have included gluten-free brown rice syrup, raw honey, agave nectar, or coconut sugar(a new find thanks to Spunky Coconut).
Whenever oil is called for, I’ve been using virgin coconut oil for its health benefits. Coconut oil contains lauric acid, capric acid and caprylic acid which have antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties. Although coconut oil is high in saturated fat, the lauric acid it contains helps prevent high cholesterol levels and high blood pressure. The saturated fats in coconut oil also have anti microbial properties that help deal with various bacteria, fungi, parasites, etc. that cause indigestion. However, I am still wary about using too much saturated fat; since the muffins and scones I’ve been making are just an occasional treat, I try not to worry about it too much.
Gluten-Free/Dairy-Free/Egg-Free Cinnamon Spiced Scones
I ran out of Bob’s All Purpose GF Baking Flour so I made Lexie’s version which worked great. My son enjoys scones slightly warmed with sunflower butter spread on top like frosting. For a savory scone, leave out the cinnamon and vanilla. Savory scones, shaped into rounds, are nice for sandwiches.
- 2 teaspoons chia seeds
- 6 tablespoons water
- 1 1/4 cup blanched almond flour
- 1 cup gluten-free baking flour mix (I usually use Bob’s Red Mill)
- 1/2 cup tapioca flour plus more for dusting
- 2 teaspoons gluten-free baking powder
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons virgin coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon agave nectar
- 1 teaspoon gluten-free vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup almond milk plus 1 tablespoon for brushing tops of scones
- ground cinnamon for sprinkling on top
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Grind chia seeds in a coffee grinder until fine in texture. Mix chia seeds with water in a small bowl and mix well. Let sit 20 minutes. Mixture will become gelatinous.
- In a food processor, combine almond flour, gluten free baking flour, tapioca flour, baking powder, and salt. Process until thoroughly combined.
- Add coconut oil and process until ingredients are evenly blended. Add chia seed mixture, agave nectar, vanilla extract and almond milk. Process until combined and dough forms. Dough may be a little sticky.
- Sprinkle some tapioca flour on a large cutting board or pastry sheet. Scoop dough onto floured board and sprinkle more flour on top. If dough is soft, gently knead in a little more flour until dough is more manageable, but still soft. Form into a circle, about 3/4″ thick. Cut into 6 pie shaped wedges.
- Transfer scone wedges onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Brush tops with almond milk. Sprinkle tops with cinnamon.
- Bake for 15 minutes or until scones are lightly browned. Makes 6 scones.
I like that teddy bear – I think he's got the right idea!
He's a smart bear!
Dani Spies says
This look delicious! I kind of wish I had the bears seat;) I've dabbled with some gluten-free recipes (just for fun) and it really is like trying to learn a whole new style of baking in the kitchen – kind of like earning a new cuisine! Anyhow – looks like you're catching on!
Thanks Dani, gluten-free baking is definitely a whole new world, but with practice, I'm hoping to figure this out little by little.
Wow, what a healthy way to eat dessert 🙂
just found your sight and love it. My son is 2 years old and is allergic to soy, dairy , eggs, peanuts and as of yesturday, now has to be on a gluten free diet as well. My question to you is, as far as baking goes and now the need to restock my pantry, what would i sustitute white flour for that i can use in most recipes?
Hi, baking gluten/dairy/egg free can be challenging at first, but once you figure out some substitutes it becomes much easier. For white flour, you can substitute a mixture of almond flour (if your son can have tree nuts), brown rice flour, and some sort of starch (tapioca, potato, arrowroot). You can find almond flour at Trader Joe’s or order online. Brown rice flour can be found at Whole Foods or other health food stores. You can also use white rice flour although not as nutritious – this along with tapioca starch can be found inexpensively at an Asian grocery store; otherwise, you can find these at Whole Foods. You will want to mix the flours, not using just one. For example, 50% almond flour; 25% brown rice flour; 25% tapioca starch. Also, gluten-free flours tend not to rise as much as regular flours, so I often double the amount of baking powder and baking soda in a recipe. In place of eggs, try a flaxseed gel (1 tablespoon ground flaxseed soaked in 3 tablespoons water until it turns gel-like) or egg replacer (Ener-G egg replacer). Dairy is much easier to substitute for since there are many dairy-free milks on the market now. Hope that helps.
Julie Saldana says
This looks delicious! I’ve learned some gluten-free recipes (just for entertainment) and it’s really like trying to learn a whole new style of baking in the kitchen – like getting a new cuisine! Anyway, thank you