A Weekend of Gluten-Free Bread Baking

If there is one food other than eggs I love, it must be bread. When given the choice, growing up I always preferred a loaf of bread or a bocadillo over dessert. Pan con chocolate was always my favorite mid afternoon snack after school.

My mom or aunt or anyone who would pick us up from school in the afternoons, always had a loaf of bread stuffed with bars of chocolate inside. Sometimes even Nocilla, which was our version of Nutella.

Although I did have bread baking classes in culinary school, pastry chefs and bakers always had different roles in all the places I worked. Even rivalry at times. Bakers were super fast and sometimes even messy. Pastry cooks meticulous. (ok, I know I will get some grief by saying that!). Pastry was my love.

I did however go through a bread baking phase a few years ago. I became a bit obssessed with Peter Reinhart, Richard Bertinet and Ciril Hitz. I read and experimented at home.

Soon after that, C. also started experimenting with sourdough bread baking trying to emulate the taste of the northern California sourdough loaves he grew up eating. But recently all that came to a halt when we had to start living gluten free. I have had great gluten free bread before (particularly from this place), but apart from this, I had not been very successful at baking it at home.

A few days ago, my friend K. sent me a link to a recipe published in Body & Soul magazine. It was loaded with great grains and molasses. Not just plain rice flour, but millet, teff and quinoa (a substitution I made since I cannot have soy).

So this past Sunday morning, while I had the house all to myself, I decided to bake bread and play around with the recipe. I made different batches with raisins and pumpkin seeds, chocolate chips, and dried fig and walnut.

Nothing beats the smell of yeast fermenting and bread baking in the oven. This is a great basic recipe that can be adapted to add other flavors and textures. My freezer is now stocked up with bread and I will certainly be using this recipe again.

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65 Responses to “A Weekend of Gluten-Free Bread Baking”

  1. Stephanie says:

    how yummy!! My sister makes homemade wheat bread and grinds her own wheat. That’s delicious, but I always like to try different kinds of bread. I wonder if I’d like this recipe!

  2. That gf bread looks lovely! I don’t have any experience cooking with gf flours, but I think I’d like to play around with them a bit. Just in case I want to surprise a gf friend with a bready gift! Thanks for the heads up on a good recipe.

  3. April says:

    Aran, this is exactly what I’ve been looking for! My young godson is a bread lover but has recently been identified as having sever gluten ‘allergies’ so his mother and I are on the hunt for an alternative. I will get busy trying this recipe our right away. Thanks so much!

  4. A lovely bread! Very healthy and flavorful looking. That topping is wonderful. Great shots!



  5. bread baking smells so good! Your photos are amazing and mouthwatering!
    The Design Dish

  6. Oh thank you so much for that post, I was waiting for it anxiously. I adore bread baking and I’m a nice at-home sourdough “gluten-full” bread baker but since my family can no more have gluten, I’ve just tried 3-4 times to bake gluten-free bread and never met with complete success (too bitter, crumb a mess etc).
    Your post and the link to that special recipe sure will help me to try once again. Thanks!
    PS: a HUGE thank, too, for the suggestion you offered me a few weeks ago to buy the allergen-free baker’s guide by Cybele Pascal: that book is FANTASTIC. We substituted a few things (rice not allowed at home, for ex) but each recipe already tried is a hit.
    Have a nice day :-)

  7. Paula says:

    oh, can I bite a little? :)

  8. I really like the idea with the figs and nuts. Sounds very tasty.

  9. Wow you are a delight in the kitchen. I love eggs too.

  10. The French says:

    This sounds delicious! What’s that you spread on the bread? Feta, goat cheese? What a lovely post:)

  11. Cristina says:

    Thanks for the recipe, I have friends who cannot have gluten and I was looking for a recipe for bread. This sound delicious, especially the fig and nuts version. Great shots, too :-)

  12. You might want to check out http://www.mybready.com, a first of its kind robotic bread machine that creates gluten-free breads totally free from contamination. They’ve been given the Celiac Sprue Association seal as well. We’ve tested the product and find it vastly superior to any previous gluten-free baked goods (in fact anyone would find it tasty) … but please look and decide for yourself.

  13. Gorgeous photos, as always. Wish you could “post” the scent of your baking day for all to enjoy.

  14. Seanna Lea says:

    Your breads look fantastic. It’s not even lunch time and I just want to go eat them from the screen.

  15. etringita says:

    Por esos bocatas de salchichón con rodajitas de tomate y un chorrete de aceite de oliva a media tarde. ;)

  16. I’m so impressed with all your adventurous pursuit of good bread! These photos, as always, are smashing.

  17. Your photos are so beautiful I get lost looking at them and forget the point of the post: but to get back to it, it is so nice to finally have a decent recipe for a gluten-free bread!

  18. April- Let me know how you like it!

    The French- I forgot to mention it. That was goat cheese on a slice of the millet bread topped with watercress, radishes, cherry tomatoes from a local farmer and green onions. Then I just add a little pinch of salt and olive oil on top and it’s a great mid morning snack.

    Etringita- Hmmm… que rico… Ahora si que se me hace la boca agua.

    Thank you everyone!

  19. Golubka says:

    SO so beautiful! Your work is always extremely inspiring, thank you for sharing with us.

  20. I’m nervous about doing gluten free cooking. I want to try it… But I’m just too nervous!

  21. Marinka says:

    I like this post you are such a cook!

  22. vphonegirl says:

    The bread looks wonderful. I have been struggling myself to create a great gf sandwich bread at home myself. I have bought bread from trader joes and it was dry. The best I had eaten was from Mariposa Bakery in San Fransico on my Honeymoon. But last night I tried the oatmeal millet recipe I have been playing with for the last 3 months and finally, finally have achieved the consistency of fresh soft sandwich bread. Now if only I had not been so tired when I was cooking. I know I used more oats than millets and all the water was warm. Thanks for the blog and new recipe to try.

  23. Wonderful photos of your baking, as always. Do you know The Bread Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum? Can’t remember is she has many gluten free bread in there, but the book is fabulous and her recipies spot on every time.

    I occasionally blog about other blogs I love. I would love to mention yours sometime and include some of your wonderful photos. Would this be possible?

  24. I’m not the world’s best bread baker and have never tried GF baking before, but these pictures are so enticing, I might just have to give it a go.

  25. Sharmila says:

    It’s such a lovely coincidence that this post of yours begins with the same sentiment that my post on French toast begins with, (that I last posted) the love of eggs.
    This bread looks so amazing! Have to try it. Gorgeous photos too!

  26. vphonegirl- that’s why every time I start modifying a recipe, I take notes in red next to the original recipe and start creating versions of it… v1.1, v1.2… It really helps at the end. Hope you figure it out!

    Victoria- I do have that book although I have to admit I have never baked from it. I do not know if it has any GF recipes but I will check! Regarding using some photos, they cannot be used with commercial purposes. If it’s a one time post in your blog, indicate that they are courtesy and copyright of Aran Goyoaga and include a link to my blog. Thanks.

    Thanks everyone!

  27. bunkycooks says:

    This all looks so good, I may have to bake something gluten free just to try your recipe. I love all the added ingredients…the bread has to taste wonderful with figs, walnuts and chocolate. Beautiful photos!

  28. vphonegirl says:

    Thanks for the suggestion. I love the red pen idea and the versioning!

  29. The radishes you topped the bread with must taste so good. I love radishes with bread, butter, and some crunchy salt. Delicious!

  30. Sigh! My son is on a yeast free diet so as excited as I got about this post I can’t try this for him because the yeast will send him bonkers! Oh well.

  31. Caitlin says:

    Bread has always been one of my favorite snacks too. I always looked forward to my mom baking zucchini or pumpkin bread growing up. These look great, always enjoy reading your blog!

  32. morgana says:

    Mmmmmmmmmm. Pan con chocolate… ¡¡¡ Qué tiempos !!! Y con nocilla. ¿Tú te acuerdas de la mantequilla de 3 gustos? Ésa que se parecia a los helados de corte de tres sabores… A veces nos la compraban también.

    Yo recuerdo las meriendas de una rebanada de pan gallego de centeno en hogaza (de ése que duraba más de una semana sin ponerse duro) untada de miel y mantequilla como una de las más deliciosas de mi infancia.

    Ahora me decanto por el pan negro (tipo alemán, de centeno o semillas) y en lugar de mantequilla unto aguacate y echo un poco de herbamare por encima. Es lo más simple del mundo mundial pero me lo como con un gusto…

    Un abrazo desde los madriles (con un calor de mil demonios).

  33. Inés says:

    Guztiz ados!. Nire amamak,ogia postretzat hartzen zuen… eta nik batzuetan ere bai!. Baina ogia eta txokolatea…Chobil izenekoa erosten zuen nire amak eta ogi barrua sartzen zuenean “miga” delakoa behean geratzen zen aurreztearren…Halere Hasier Etxebarriak eta batez ere David de Jorge eder honek prestatutakoa: olio ona eta Himalayako gatzaz probatu behar dut gaur bertan…milesker again

  34. There’s nothing better than the smell of baking bread! Beautiful post, as usual.

  35. Trés delicious post! J’adore bread!!!

  36. Oh, what a sweet open face radish sandwich. I made something just like that at culinary school and was sorely scoffed at by students and chef, alike who wanted meat. But we know, a good radish is a prize.


  37. Caroline says:

    These photos are incredible! xo

  38. I do love the yeasty smell that fills the house when baking bread. This looks wonderful – and your tartine looks so tasty! All those crunchy radishes and sweet tomatoes with the bread – yum!

  39. M. says:

    Les photos sont magnifiques!!!!

  40. ChichaJo says:

    This bread looks wonderful…I love that bread-baking smell too! Makes me feel some homey :)

  41. ibb says:

    Ni ere ogiarekin experimentatzen nabil. Bitartean, baserriko ogia erosten diat astebukaeran aste osorako.
    Nik ere baditut fermentuak etxetik…ea hazten diren…nik horri onetan begitu nun ogiaren errezeta, eta irina, artozko irin integrala eta gero irin zuriarekin edo ondo prestatutakoarekin ibiltzen naiz jolasean.
    Glutenarekin ibili ninteke, baina Aitor joan zenetik, irina eta horrela aprobetzatzen dizkiat eta oraindik baditut gluten gabeko gauzak etxean.
    Linkak bidaltzen dizkizut:

  42. yasmine says:

    Oh this is a great recipe, I’ll definetely try it this week-end!
    For bread lover we also do a tasty and healthy bread in the company I work, check it out : http://www.damascusbakery.com/

  43. Kait says:

    I can’t wait to share this recipe with my friend who is gluten intolerant. I really enjoyed reading your post and the photos are mouthwatering.

  44. morgana- no me acuerdo de la mantequilla de tres gustos! cual era?

    ines- badakit euren errezeta hori zein dan. hmmm…

    Ibb- eskerrik asko. begiratuko dodaz!

  45. Bread baking is so conforting and satisfying.
    Aran, i can imagine you´ve had a busy but gratifying Sunday.
    The breads look really tasty and delicious.

  46. Linda says:

    Great looking shots! Beautiful. The bread sounds amazing, I love tweaking recipes like this, you just never know what you’re going to stumble on.

  47. Ah! All of this looks so, so good.

  48. נטע says:

    1st time posting here.
    I love your blog and recipes !!
    I have celiac. tried the bread yesterday with some modifications as where I live we don’t have all these flours, it still came out terrific.
    Thanks !!

  49. I completely agree – nothing makes a house smell like a home quite like yeast and bread baking. So glad you found a recipe you can play with and get your fill of bread :)

  50. That looks so good with all those fresh vegetables and spices. It’s perfect. Yum! Thank you for sharing.

  51. Sini says:

    I’m happy to be back again reading your blog – after 4 weeks in China where blogspot -sites are under censorship. Was bit of a surprise realizing that I wasn’t able to open your site ;)

    It’s wonderful when you find a recipe with which you can play around! Mouth-watering pictures. I’m eager to try this one out.

  52. Sini- wow… I didn’t know about blogger being censored in china!! I suppose economic changes have taken place but censorship still exists. That’s a shame…

    Thank you!

  53. Hi Aran!
    I’m Maria, an italian girl who is a big disaster in the kitchen,I’m trying to redeem myself from this status and I want to tell you that I learn a lot from your blog, thank you for sharing your talent with us(and sorry for the bad english!)!

  54. Zia Elle says:

    Yeeeees, I looooove bread!!!!!!

  55. a. maren says:

    oo what lovely brown breads! and beautiful photos, as usual.

  56. Y says:

    Interesting looking bread. I’ll probably need to source some flours first before I can attempt it. I too am fascinated by bread and bread making, and have often entertained thoughts of being a baker by profession :)

  57. tiens says:

    the bread is good including all the vegetals you complimented with.continue doing it natura

  58. Hi Aran! Did you simply substitute the soy for the quinoa in equal amounts? We do not eat soy here at our home either, and are trying so hard to be gluten free. Your blog is going to enable me to make that so much easier on the family!
    Thank you!

  59. Loraine says:

    I tried the recipe this weekend and the bread looks and tastes wonderful! Only problem is that it didn’t rise as high as it should have and it fell a little. Any suggestions?

    • Aran says:

      Hi Loraine,

      This bread is not supposed to be super fluffy either. It might be that you overproofed it and then it just deflated. Hard to tell without seeing the entire process… Sorry it didn’t turn out. Maybe try one more time? Proofing and baking times are hard to tell because they vary so much in the environment and the dough temperature.

  60. Josephine says:

    Hi Aran,

    I tried your gluten free bread recipe in your book (with millet seeds and teff flour) and I loved it!
    I would like to make another batch with fresh yeast though. Have you ever tried the recipe with fresh yeast? any idea of how much fresh yeast should I substitute for the dry one?

    Thank you!


    • Aran says:

      Hi Josephine.

      So glad you liked the bread. This one is very similar to the one in the book but with a few changes. I have not made this recipe with fresh yeast but here is a conversion for different types of yeast. Hope it helps.

      100% fresh = 40-50% active dry = 33% instant


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