Finally, Really Good Sandwich Bread: Our Favorite Gluten Free Bread Recipe

Gluten free bread is a staple of our diet.

When John first started a gluten free diet we searched through grocery store after grocery store hunting the elusive frozen rice bread that our internet searches indicated should be there.

We finally found some and, upon trying it, promptly spit it out. It was horrible!

John kept eating it though, because what else is one to do when you don’t know how to cook and your girlfriend is away at grad school.

By the time we married the following year, we had a bread machine and Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Bread Mix. Thus started the four year saga of baking gluten free bread that was either dense, wet, full of air holes, or incredibly misshapen.

At last count we’ve been through three different recipes plus innumerable variations of each when I just couldn’t keep my hands off the recipe (which would be at least 95% of the time). But do not be disheartened – Finally, after four years, I have worked out a recipe that consistently turns out really good sandwich bread.

One of the reasons that I really like this bread recipe is that the flours in it are relatively inexpensive. And, at least in Birmingham, they are widely available. I can get all of the different flours at our local Wal-mart.

The bread is also very easy to make, especially once you have the recipe memorized from making it frequently. I even do shortcuts now and often  mix everything up in one bowl. However, if you’re trying this recipe for the first time, I do recommend that you follow the recipe as closely as possible.

Finally! Really Good Gluten Free Sandwich Bread

1 Tbsp. bread machine yeast
1 Tbsp. sugar
12 oz. water (1.5 c) (105 degrees or a little less than hot)

11 oz. (approx 2.5 c) GFCS’gluten free flour mix
2 tsp. xanthan gum
1 tsp. salt

3 eggs (or 9 Tbsp. water and 3 Tbsp. ground flax seed)
1 ½ Tbsp. oil
1 tsp. cider vinegar

Instructions

1. Start by combining the yeast and sugar in a small bowl (I use the smallest in my set of three nested mixing bowls). Add the water while gently stirring the yeast and sugar. Let this mixture sit while you mix the rest of the ingredients – bubbles and foam should form if the yeast is happy.

2. Combine the flour mix, xanthan gum and salt in the largest mixing bowl and stir well.

3. In a third bowl, whisk the eggs, oil and vinegar until the eggs are a bit frothy.

4. By this point the yeast mixture should be foamy, so you can pour the two liquid mixtures into the flour mixture. Blend the dough with a mixer for 4 minutes.

Bread Machine Directions:

Scoop your dough into the bread machine and smooth the top of the dough. I bake my bread using an 80 minute setting that allows for 20 minutes of kneading, 18 minutes of rise, and 42 minutes of baking. However, since I don’t use the paddle in by bread machine, I’m effectively doing a 38 minute rise and a 42 minute bake. (The advantage of not using the paddle is that you don’t end up with a hole in the bottom of your bread.)

Conventional Oven Directions:

Scoop the dough into a greased loaf pan. Allow the dough to rise in a warm area until is is about 1 inch from the top of the pan. Then bake at 375 degrees for 50 – 60 minutes.

Other Notes:

  • If you are allergic to corn I’ve developed a corn free version of this recipe that uses tapioca starch, almond flour, and guar gum. The recipe is currently available as part of the Gluten Free Bread 101 class
  • If you’re looking for a gluten free milk bread recipe, you can make this bread using milk instead of water. In fact, I originally developed it with milk and then switched it to water to cut down on the cost and to make it casein free. If you are on a dairy-free diet, then you may use a plain gluten free non-dairy milk..
  • If you are allergic to eggs, use the flax substitute listed in the recipe, or follow the instructions on your favorite egg replacement powder. When I use the flax eggs, the bread is usually slightly wetter than otherwise.


Comments

  1. My 11 year old daughter made her second loaf of GF bread this weekend. She was so happy with the results. Recently diagnosed with Celiac’s, she was concerned with what she could eat at lunch while in school. She goes to a school where she has always taken her lunch. After trying some of the GF bread from the store, I started an internet search. I found this site and thought it sounded pretty good. We bought a new bread machine and away she went. She mixed up the GF All Purpose Flour Mix and then made her first loaf of bread. The bread stayed moist all week, and it tasted good. It did not rise as much as I had hoped, but we will continue to experiment with the water/flour combination. We live at 5,000 ft, so we often have to adjust recipes. Like Sue, we left the paddle in for the first loaf, but took it out this time. I am so grateful not to have to figure this out alone. Thank you for this great recipe! To quote my daughter, “it’s so good, even my friends like it!”

  2. Holy COW! It’s so good. It actually tastes like homemade bread! I’m so excited :D
    After I finished whipping up the batter, I realized that I had no idea where the bread pan was. So I pulled out the muffin tin. I baked the whole batch in one greased 12-muffin tin, but I would suggest using two (they overflowed a little while they were rising). I baked them at 375 for 25 minutes, stopping at 15 to brush some butter on the top (to brown them).
    They’re some of the best rolls I’ve ever tasted, gluten or no gluten.
    Soft, fluffy, light.
    They’re still warm, so I’ve yet to see how they hold up after they cool.
    Thank you so much!
    Krista

  3. Oh, and I used Sorghum flour instead of soy

  4. Jodi, I’ve been making the brown rice flour/potato starch/corn starch/3 eggs version of this bread for some time, with great success. The last few loaves I’ve made have not been rising the way they should, and I’m wondering if a change in the brand of flour and starches that I’m using could cause that problem. It’s the only thing that’s changed. I’m totally baffled!

  5. After many good results and many more failed I finally hit upon a good idea and while it is not mine alone it is when it comes to yeast bread. Try this in you waffle maker, G-Freers. Talk about quick (4 minutes) and no failures, all I did was add more liquid. Of course this works with any GF flour, egg, oil and liquid. In fact, I bet many of us would be surprised at what your WAFFLE maker can do. My 1st batch i put pumpkin and spice, yum! Bacon went into the next and rosemary went into a batch for crutons. This is the most fun I have had because the failure rate is 0!

  6. Can this bread be made using white rice instead of brown rice?

  7. Thank you for this site! Because my stepson has allergies to wheat, corn, soy, and peanuts and his sister has an even greater allergy to soy, I was thrilled to find a recipe for bread that wasn’t hard like some commercial rice breads. We didn’t have local access to fava bean flour, so our only alternative for the first try was Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour Mix. Also I had to use Guar Gum in place of the Xanthan Gum. It turned out great! The kids both love the flavor and the fact that it’s soft and bread-like. My only concern was that the side and bottom crusts were very crumbly, a lot like cornbread. I greased the pan with butter, but I’m wondering if I should have also powdered it with some gluten free flour. While the taste isn’t bad (my wife actually thinks it tastes like white bread), I thought it had an odd flavor to it. Probably just my being used to wheat flour and not being accustomed to other flours. My next go at this is going to use some amaranth flour or almond flour, and possibly a touch of sugar in the dry mix. Any suggestions or recommendations?

  8. Melissa,
    I don’t think it matters whether you use white or brown rice flour. The only real differences I know of are nutritional value, flavor, and perishability.
    Brown rice flour has more nutrients, a hint of a nutty flavor, and it perishes quickly so it has to be kept cool. Besides that they’re basically the same.

  9. Michael S –

    I am pretty sure Bob’s Red Mill gluten free flour mix contains corn product in it. Maybe there is one that is also corn free? I would check the ingredients on that, as well as for soy products just to be on the safe side.

    It takes a little while to get used to the taste. We found tapioca flour and potato flour make for a better tasting bread, but you have to use both in smaller amounts. We also don’t prefer rice flour in our recipes cause we think it tastes funny – so we use quinoa flour instead.

    Good luck!

  10. Michael S says:

    Melanie,

    Thanks for the suggestion. I did go back to check the ingredients. Consists of Garbanzo Bean Flour, Potato Starch, Tapioca Flour, White Sorghum Flour, and Fava Bean Flour. So at least we’re safe there. I will watch it when I add tapioca flour or potato flour. As far as the quinoa flour, I’m already leery of that one. Tried to make some quinoa tortillas a couple of weeks ago. Not good, really bitter in fact. I’m going to try amaranth tortillas next time. I will consider a small amount of quinoa, though.

  11. I was looking for a gluten free bread to make for communion bread at my church. I have tried several other recipes that I have not been happy with-but this was perfect. I made it exactly as the instructions were given. as there were no directions for the size of pan, I put it into a 9×5 pan. This looked a little skimpy so transferred it into an 8×4 pan-and this looked about right. It seemed to take a long time to rise-almost 2 hours,but it did rise beautifully. When I put it into the oven, some of the batter fell out of the pan (Which I hurriedly scooped up and tasted-YUM!!) Baked for the required time, removed it from the oven and turned it upside down on a couple of jars as one reviewer suggested. I was absolutely delighted with this bread!! It wasn’t crumbly, tore easily for those administering communion and was well received by everyone. I will definitely be making this again for my gluten free friends-as I am not celiac myself. Thanks for a great recipe.

  12. I forgot to mention that I did this the conventional was as I don’t have a bread machine-and used quick-rise yeast. I thought this might help those of you who don’t have a bread machine!

  13. I’m very new to wheat- and soy-free baking and I’m anxious to find a good sandwich bread for school lunches.

    What can I use in place of the masa harina (daughter also has a nut allergy, so no almond flour) and the sorghum? Can I swap them out for oat or buckwheat flour? What about using potato flour?

    Can I use tapico flour as a replacement for the corn starch?

    So many questions. Thanks in advance! I’m glad I found this website. :)

  14. I’m looking for a bread recipe that contains no gluten, yeast, soy, casein or eggs. Do you know of any? I work in a doctor’s office and several of our patients are testing sensitive to all of the above.

    Thank you.

  15. Has anyone had success using instant (bread machine) yeast with this recipe. If so, how did you do it? I have tried several times but mine keeps flopping.

  16. I found a recipe for gluten/yeast/egg free bread but I’m having trouble finding it again. I will try to find it and post a.s.a.p.

    Basically, it uses baking soda and powder for yeast and I use flax seed mixture for eggs. I also use rice vinegar and agave/and or stevia for sweetener.

    I use coconut, brown/white rice and tapioca flours. I also use quinoa and bean flours since I can’t have corn.

  17. Susan,
    Thank you so much for looking, this would be so helpful!

    Kim

  18. There are all kinds of good gluten free Irish soda breads on-line. Most of them call for 1 egg so you could substitute the flax and water for and egg. Here is an example:

    GLUTEN-FREE IRISH SODA BREAD

    one cup sweet rice flour
    three-quarter cup teff flour
    one-quarter cup tapioca flour
    one tablespoon sugar
    one teaspoon xanthan gum
    one teaspoon baking soda
    one teaspoon baking powder

    one cup buttermilk
    six tablespoons butter, melted
    one egg-substitute one Tbsp. ground flax seed with 3 Tbsp. water

    Preheat the oven to 350°. Grease a small souffle dish for a round loaf or nine-by-five-by-three-inch loaf pan (the standard size) for a square loaf.

    Put all the dry ingredients into a large bowl and stir them together until you have a consistent mixture.

    In a second, smaller bowl, mix all the wet ingredients together. Make a small well in the dry ingredients, then slowly pour the wet ingredients into the well, then stir until just combined. The dough will be quite sticky, but it should not be too dry.

    Form the dough into the shape you desire, then place it in the baking pan. Bake for thirty minutes or so, or until a butter knife inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean.

  19. Baroth,
    Thank you so much. I’ll try it this weekend!
    Kim

  20. Yeast Free, Egg Free Bread Recipe (with misc. notes)

    Coconut Flour seems to add moisture but I over cooked and the crust was tough. Max. 60 min covered, 10 min. uncovered. I also added extra water while mixing because it seemed dry. (1 tbsp?)

    I used 1 cup brown and white rice, 1 cup tapioca, 1/2 cup bean and coconut flours. (total 4 cups)
    1/2 tsp sea salt, 1 tbsp agave and rice vinegar.
    I added flax seed mixture for moisture

    Dry ingredients:
    1 1/2 cups potato starch flour
    1 cup sorghum flour
    1/2 cup rice bran
    1/2 cup almond flour
    1/2 cup tapioca starch
    1 teaspoon salt (My friend Christine suggested more salt – you decide.)
    2 tablespoons baking powder (I use this gluten-free/corn-free brand.
    1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
    2 teaspoons guar gum (If you can tolerate xanthan gum, Carol Fenster has concluded the perfect combination is equal parts of xanthan and guar gum.)

    Wet ingredients:
    2 cups water
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    1 1/2 tablespoons blackstrap molasses
    2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
    Extra water as needed

    Toppings:
    Sesame Seeds

    Directions:
    - Preheat oven to 400 degrees
    - Stir flours, starch, salt, gum, baking soda, and baking powder until well combined.
    - Whisk together oil, 2 cups water, molasses, and apple cidar vinegar in a small bowl.
    - Add wet ingredients to dry and stir together just until thoroughly mixed, not too much.
    - Pour mix into oiled bread pan. Sprinkle top of loaf with seeds, and lightly spray with oil.
    - Cover bread pan with foil, and bake in preheated oven for 60 minutes. Remove foil, and bake another 10 minutes, or until top is brown. Test loaf with a skewer or knife to make sure it’s done.
    - Cool in pan briefly, before turning out onto a wire rack to cool. For best results, store in the refrigerator and slice off pieces as you need it. After two days I like to slice up the bread, slip it into plastic freezer bag, and store in the freezer to use as needed.

  21. Thanks Susan!

  22. I have one of the same questions as OHgal (from 10/03) — which flour would be best to substitute for the sorghum? My DH seems allergic. But I know the flours have different weights, absorption, etc, so I’d love some advice before I make (another) loaf that nobody likes! :/
    Thanks — I’m thankful for this site and all the comments! :)

  23. Carol,

    I tried this recipe using millet flour in place of the sorghum, and a 50/50 combination of millet and brown rice flour in place of the masa harina (sp?). It turned out great! (I am becoming a huge fan of millet flour.)

    The only change I will make next time is to cut back slightly on the amount of water, as the loaf sunk in a tiny bit and was slightly “moist” on the inside. (Could be I didn’t bake long enough.)

    I also used the suggestions posted earlier to proof the loaf in a 200°F oven, then heat up to the baking temp without removing the pan.

    DD loved this bread. I’m so happy I found the recipe! Good luck.

  24. Hi I was pretty proud of myself, I made my first GF bread last night and my 1st GF pizza yesterday..my sister has tried these products in a restaurant and said they were absolutely disgusting, but she liked ine,,so that really made me happy..anyways I am doing GF for my son.

    On the bread I used the Bobs red mill and added 2 extra tsp of the Xantham gum. I followed the directions on the pkg except I put the dough in a metal loaf pan greased with spray veg oil, and set it in a oven at 170 temp for 25 mins to rise, after the 25 mins I turn the oven on to the recommended setting on the pkg and baked it accordingly, I then shut the oven off and opened the door and left the bread in the oven to cool, about another 20 mins, then took it out and put it on a cool rack, I was so impressed with the size that is rised to and how delicious it was, it didn’t fall. I used a hand mixer. so hooray for me..lol..I also made pizza using Bobs red mill pizza and added 1 and a half tsp of xantham gum to the dough then follow pkg direction, I again was impressed it came out good and my son actually ate it..hooray he is a extremly picky 9 yr old with down sydrome..so happy I found this site,,I do need to however find a recipe for cupcakes and cookies

  25. Hi I was wondering what the life shelf is for cookies (GF)..in a airtight jar?..thank you

  26. Does anyone have a suggestion for what to substitute for eggs in a recipe? We have a patient who can’t tolerate gluten, soy, casein or eggs.

    Thank you so much!

    Kim

  27. Kim, There is a Vegan egg sustitute (powder) that works well for baking. It can be found anyplace that caters to vegans. I had some vegan relatives visiting the other day and the result came out well using water instead of my usual milk power.
    (1.5 teaspoons plus 2 tablespoons water to replace each egg in the recipe).
    For the vegan (milkless and eggless) bread I used double the “normal” amount of egg replacer.

  28. To Kathy:
    Cookies are pretty easy. I used a regular cookie recipe but substituted a rice flour/tapioca starch combination for the flour and added a couple tsp of guar gum.
    To Kim:
    On this website it actually has a great suggestion: flax seed. I’m not sure where it is, but it’s around here somewhere.

  29. Hi, excellent site,,,I made a bread with bobs red mill bread mix, and must say I only added an extra 1-1/2 tsp of Xatham gum. I made t by hand and baked it in my oven. I first let it rise in a warm oven set at 170 degrees for 25 mins, which let it rise to the top of the 9×5 loaf pan I sprayed with spray oil, I then turned the oven on to 375 degrees and baked it for 65 mins..I then shut the oven off and opened the door without removing the bread and allowed it to cool as the oven cooled, then I remoed it from the pan onto a wire rack,,,it was BEAUTIFUL…Tonight I am making another but am going t experiment with herbs…I also made the choc chip cookies from bobs red mill and the kids and husband loved them…I am going to try making them following the directions on a pkg of choc chips substituting the four for the gluten free flour…wish me luck,,will let you know

  30. OMGosh this bread turned out great..I used the all purpose baking flour by Bob’s red mill and followed the ingredients for the recipe above, except reg active yeast, after letting the yeast sit with the sugar and water while I assembled the rest of the ingredients, and mixed it by hand. Then I added it all to my bread machine with the paddle attached and hit the 80 min setting…I was amazed how delicious this was, I think it is because of the sugar, i’m not sure if it’s all mind over matter except, wow it was delic…

  31. I’m confused by the Other Notes about masa harina, since the recipe doesn’t call for masa harina.

  32. Masa Harina is an ingredient in the GLUTEN FREE FLOUR MIX mentioned as an ingredient in the bread recipe. If you click on this link it will take you to the recipe for the gluten free flour mix. This was confusing for me too at first.

  33. Did anybody hear about Katz gluten free Challah bread my friend is raving about this I got to try this anybody else has feedback?

  34. I just made this bread. I used ground flaxseed instead of eggs. It turned out pretty good but after baking for nearly an hour I took it out of the oven and it caved in and was still a little gummy in the middle. I think because I used ground flaxseed instead of eggs the extra water in the recipe contributed to it not cooking inside.I think I will reduce the water next time I try this recipe.

  35. has anyone made this bread with milk instead of water?

  36. Hi

    Can anyone help me with a bread recipe with only rice/alomnd/millet. I want a wheat and corn free bread recipe and I don’t think I will find xanthan gum where I live.

  37. Katrina, masa harina is in the gluten free flour mixture. You have to click on the link to see it. The mixture contains brown rice flour, corn starch, soy flour and masa harina. 80)

  38. Hi, so I’ve tried this recipe twice already and both times the bread didn’t rise. I’m using the conventional oven method and the first time I used active dry yeast and left it on top of the stove. The second time I used the rapid rise yeast and did as suggested by one previous comments of leaving it in a 170degree oven for 25 minutes and still nothing. Any other suggestions or tips? Both times i followed the proofing and had foam in my yeast/sugar mixture. What’s odd is I made gluten free pizza dough just yesterday, using the 170degree method and it worked. the dough doubled in size. Odd. Again any help is welcomed. Thanks!

  39. imlovinmyhubby says:

    I made this bread this morning using Jules baking flour. I had forgotten that her flour already has xanthan gum and added even more according to the recipe. I was afraid I’d end up with a loaf that would resemble a rubber ball but instead had a very high but fabulous textured loaf of white sandwich bread. The only thing I will do next time (aside from not adding double the amount of xanthan gum) is after letting it almost fully cook, to coat the loaf with water or milk and add some sea or kosher salt and maybe some sesame seeds on top. As it is the texture was great but I felt like it lacked a bit in flavor so experimenting with herbs and the extra toppings I think will only improve on a wonderful recipe!
    PS: I’m hearing only “yums” and “mmms” coming from the dining room where my kids ages 6, 5, 3 and 2 are eating the first turkey sandwich they’ve had in almost a year and in some cases, ever! Thanks so much for posting this recipe!

  40. imlovinmyhubby says:

    If you have multiple food allergies I would reccomend taking a look into julesglutenfree.com she has many recipes that are free of common allergens. Her flour mix is by far my favorite. I have made her flour mix myself and also bought it pre-packaged.
    The ingredients are:
    •Expandex® Modified Tapioca Starch
    •Potato Starch
    •Corn Starch
    •Corn Flour
    •White Rice Flour
    •Xanthan Gum

    We only avoid gluten and dairy but I have many friends who cant have soy, peanuts or eggs who have also found a bunch of goodies there. Good luck!

  41. to the poster who said there bread wouldn’t rise, I usually make my bread in the morning that way by lunch time it has risen and is ready to put in the oven. I noticed GF or regular bread can take anywhere from 2 to 6 hours to fully rise. also check your yeast. If no bubbles from when your mix the water, sugar and yeast often times that means the yeast is no good. I hope this helps.

  42. Heidi,

    I replace half the water with milk and the bread turns out great, with a nice flavor. It seems to brown more quickly, tho, so I cover the loaf with foil for the last 20 minutes or so to prevent it from getting too dark. Good luck!

  43. I just have one question about making bread, does anyone use there breadmaker and do you have good results about this, also, this may not be the right area, but the yeast buns, can you use breadmaker for the dough and then transfer to the oven.
    Just new to all of this. I use my breadmaker normally for bread, but now as I have an allergy to wheat I’m going gluten free.
    Pat

  44. Thank you SO much for this recipe! I’ve been gluten free for over 2 years but have not found a gluten free bread that I liked with the exception of Udies which is $5.50 a small loaf!!! I’ve made 2 loaves in my bread machine and my 3rd is baking now. I get the best loaf if I mix the batter as directed with a mixer, then pour it into the machine. I had corners with unmixed flour when I let the machine mix it. I’m so happy to have found this web site and will pass it onto others who will benefit.

  45. OMG!! This recipe rocks!! I’m SO glad I found this site. I’ve been missing sandwiches so bad that I broke down and ate one with regular bread. BIG mistake. So I found this recipe and finally got all the ingrediants. Couldn’t find soy flour, so used quinoa instead and it came out great! I’d already eaten dinner, so I had a piece with some cinnamon sugar on it and my mouth was in heaven. Thanks, thanks, thanks!

  46. For an egg substitute: for each egg use 1 Tablsp. ground flax seed mixed with 3 Tablsp. water.

    Mix it when starting your recipe and let it sit for about 10 minutes before adding to the other ingredients. It will thicken & become rather gelatinous. It works great, at least in the baked things I’ve used it in.

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