Jen's Gluten-Free Flour Blend

GF flour jarThis is my own gluten-free flour blend. I use it as a simple cup-for-cup substitute for wheat flour in mainstream recipes and it's worked in every recipe I've tried. (You'll also need to add some xanthan gum - see below.)

Chef's note: I like to pre-mix several cups of this blend and store it in a glass jar so I'm always ready to bake. GF flour tends to have a much shorter shelf life than wheat flour, so I always keep my GF flours in the refrigerator. My xanthan gum gets stored in the freezer for the same reason.

I use this jar from Target to store my flour blend. I love it because its opening is wide enough to easily fit my one-cup measuring cup. I wrote the formula on a label on the front so it's easy to refill when it's time.

Amendment 2016: Bob's Red Mill now makes a One-to-One GF Baking Flour mix that's essentially the same ingredients and works the same as my blend. It wasn't on the market years ago when I started baking gluten-free, but as I use up all my little bags of different flours, I'm transitioning over to the the Bob's Red Mill blend for simplicity. Beware, though, because other GF baking blends that claim to be one-to-one substitutes often aren't. Some contain powdered milk (not vegan!) or other ingredients (such as garbonzo flour) to which some people are allergic and which may add strong unexpected flavors to your recipe. Also, some mixes contain xanthan gum already and some don't, so pay attention to whether or not you need to add your own xanthan gum to a recipe. Always, always read those ingredients!

GF Flour Blend

Measure the flours into the wide-mouth jar, put the lid on, and shake like crazy to blend it up. Be sure it's well mixed. You can scale this recipe up or down as much as you need to, depending on the size of your storage jar.

Xanthan Gum

The gluten protein in wheat flour acts as an elastic "glue" that holds breads and other baked goods together. GF flour lacks this protein (obviously), so without some kind of substitute, your baked goods will just be a pile of crumbs. It's true that you can bake GF without xanthan gum, but in my experience, xanthan gum is the simplest solution, especially for vegans. With this GF flour blend + a little xanthan gum, I've been able to turn any mainstream recipe into a gluten-free version that makes even the non-GF guests happy.

My GF flour blend does not contain xanthan gum because different types of baked goods need different amounts. I specify how much to use in my recipes, but in case you're using this flour blend in a different recipe, here are some guidelines:

When in doubt, start with 1/4 teaspoon of xanthan gum per cup of GF flour. That's often enough, but if you mix and mix and mix and the dough still seems too runny, try adding a tiny bit more. Too much will make the dough taste tangy and bitter, so it's better to under-do it and have a slightly fragile muffin than overdo it and make your goodies taste funky.

Source: Flour blend: my own creation. Xanthan gum information: