While baking isn’t my strong suit, I do try my hand at gluten-free breads every now and then. I like a good challenge…and gluten-free baking is certainly that, particularly because it takes a lot of ingredients to make breads that are tasty and light. While gluten-free baking has the potential to reduce the costs of the breads you eat, tracking down the ingredients you need can be challenging.
Sure, stores in my area are starting to stock a limited selection of gluten-free flours and mixes, but selection is generally limited to more popular items. Whole Foods a broader selection of gluten-free flours, so I’ll use them as a resource. However, based on my experience, product availability can be spotty. I’ve run in to pick up a flour I know they carry, only to discover it’s out of stock.
I’ve also bought gluten-free flours at my local Asian market. For some reason, my local grocery store stopped stocking superfine rice flour; luckily, I found a good supply at my local 99 Ranch Market. I will note what I purchased was not certified as gluten-free, but imported foods are subject to the same labeling requirements as foods produced in the United States.
I’ve also made my own flour (did you know making quinoa flour is as easy as roasting well-rinsed quinoa in a 350 degree over for 10 – 15 minutes? Grind in a coffee grinder or food processor, and sift into a bowl or jar. The longer you roast the quinoa, the nuttier the flavor.). But using online resources for flours has proven the most consistent for me since it saves a lot of time and running around.
Gluten-free flours are also used in a wide range of dishes, from making a rich brown roux for gumbo to whipping up savory Vietnamese-style pancakes for a quick dinner. Or, ahem, fried chicken. I keep a variety of flours and starches on hand for everyday cooking.
Below are some useful sources for gluten-free flour. Signing up for the company mailing lists will alert you to sales and special offers. You’ll also be in a great position to try new and different flours at reasonable prices.
- Arrowhead Mills — Arrowhead Mills is a reliable source for gluten-free flours, mixes, and grains (more about their gluten free products here). Their retail component is a bit challenging to find on their site (clicking through on a product won’t get you there), but if you click on the link at the top of page, you can shop for Arrowhead products.
- Amazon — If you search for gluten-free flour (), you’ll get a wide range of products. One caution: buying at Amazon often means buying in bulk. You’ll often purchase a case of a product, at a very good price, instead of a single package. Forewarned and all that…
- Bob’s Red Mill — Where else would you go for chia seeds? Okay that was a silly question, but Bob’s has a great variety of gluten-free flours (including coconut!). A friend visited Bob’s Red Mill when she was in Oregon and was surprised by how much care they take to make their GF products safe. She was also surprised by the flavor of the GF chocolate chip cookies she made…I told her she need to read the instructions, but did she listen???
- Cup 4 Cup — Developed by Thomas Keller, this high-end gluten-free flour draws raves. They don’t sell directly from their website, but you can check out the ingredients and find local retailers. The site also has recipes.
- Glutenfreemall — The Gluten Free Mall is a lifesaver for gluten-free shoppers. They have everything! And they’ll ship anywhere.
- King Arthur Flour — King Arthur offers a variety of gluten-free flours in a dedicated section on their website (click here). You can purchase individual flours or mixes, depending on what you need.
- To Your Health Sprouted Flour Company — To Your Health offers a wide range of gluten-free flour options including garbanzo, black bean, and amaranth. You can buy various sizes of each flour.
These are just some of the sources you can use to get your gluten-free flour. I love that there is such a great variety available, and that prices are fairly reasonable. Where are your favorite places to shop?
Tip of the Week
Some gluten-free flours, such as brown rice, quinoa, nut flours, have high oil content and may get rancid if stored for long periods of time in a cupboard or pantry. Make sure these flours are kept in an airtight container, and if you are not using them within a few months, store them the freezer to extend their shelf life.
Gluten-Free Menu of the Week
I love making these pancakes during the week. I can have dinner on the table in under thirty minutes, and faster if I use meats and vegetables. Serve them with fresh herbs on the side, and if you want a more traditional experience, use lettuce or mustard greens as wraps for bite-sized pieces of the pancakes. Once you get the hang of rolling rice paper wrappers around shrimp, lettuce, and other ingredients, making your own spring rolls is super-fast and super-easy (I also use same technique for making mini-wraps instead of sandwiches for lunch).