Introduction: Gluten-Free Bread (without Icky Gums!)

Picture of Gluten-Free Bread (without Icky Gums!)

Gluten-free breads are usually made with xanthan gum and guar gum or other additives to help give it a texture more similar to standard bread. This bread uses egg whites and flax seeds to replace the gluten, and doesn't require any gums (which seem a little weird to me, and can be hard to find and a bit pricey). This recipe is based on one from The Herbwife's Kitchen - it's similar to a hearty wheat bread and makes awesome toast.

Note: This gluten-free cheese bread also doesn't use any gums and the finished product is light, puffy, and delicious.

Step 1: You'll Need. . .

Picture of You'll Need. . .
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup milk (whole or 2%), room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon yeast
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/2 cup flax seeds, ground
  • 3/4 cup millet flour (a few extra tablespoons may be needed depending on the size of your eggs and the humidity of the air)
  • 3/4 cup tapioca flour
  • Oil for pan (approximately a tablespoon)
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Coffee/spice grinder, blender, or other grinding device
  • Small loaf pan or muffin tin
  • Towel to cover while rising

Step 2: Stir It Up

Picture of Stir It Up
  1. Mix together the egg whites and eggs
  2. Stir in milk, salt, yeast, and honey
  3. Grind flax seeds and add to the milk mixture
  4. Let stand to absorb - the mixture should become rather slimy and thickened
  5. Stir in millet flour and let stand until moisture absorbs slightly
  6. Mix in tapioca flour. The dough will be wetter than some other doughs and will be rather sticky and stretchy
  7. Cover with a towel and place in a warm spot to rise for approximately 45 minutes

Step 3: Bake and Nom

Picture of Bake and Nom
  1. Transfer the dough to a greased loaf pan, muffin tin, or other baking dish. Cover the pan with a towel, place in a warm spot, and allow to rise for 30-45 minutes
  2. Bake at 450 degrees Fahrenheit for approximately 30 minutes or until browned (if you use mini loaf pans like the ones used here or muffin tins, baking will only take about 15 minutes). When done, the loaf will sound hollow when the bottom is tapped
  3. Allow to cool slightly, slice, and enjoy!


frustrated99 (author)2016-09-16

Hi, I made this recipe because I can not process guar gum or xanthum gum. I used the flaxseed. First of all, it was delicious! The bad news is that my body did not like the flaxseed (I used ground flaxseed). I got terrible cramps. I have done some research and I found that you can use psyllium husk but that the bread is not the same. Is there anything else I can try? Thanks! Pamela

aries09 (author)2015-12-21

Love this recipe! Thank you so much. I really like how this one doesnt need the gum. And it tastes great. I made it with a bread machine and turned out great

JennaE1 (author)2015-09-30

Just made this recipe using cashew milk and Bob's Red Mill 1:1 all GF all purpose flour. It came out great! I made the dough into 6 rolls and then let it rise. I warmed the cashew milk to 110 degrees and then added it to the yeast and let it sit for a couple minutes. Then I added the flax seed to that mixture. Very delicious and crispy. They taste just like regular bread!

macinsmith (author)2013-04-27

Really great recipe! I'm pleased that there is no xangthum or guar gum.

I made a few modifications to this recipe and I made it in the bread machine and it came out great. First I substituted brown rice flour for millet flour and I added chopped walnuts (about 1/2 cup). Another variation was to sub white rice flour for millet flour then added cardamum (2 table spoons), 1 tsp cinnamon and half cup chopped almonds. I also doubled the yeast.  I've made 3 batches.  First time I baked it too long (2 loaf setting).  The second and third I made it I used a 1 loaf and it came our just right.  Now I've doubled the recipe and am have it set for 2 loaf.  We'll see...

Now I'm looking for a good gluten free french bread.  Is there somewhere to get a gluten free / gum free sour dough starter?

bzurn (author)macinsmith2014-08-24

I saw a recipe for a sourdough starter in a GF Company's Coming Gluten Free Baking cookbook (ISBN 978-1-897477-85-4), haven't tried it, but here it is.

1C white rice flour, 1/2C potato starch, 1/2C tapioca starch, 2Tbsp sugar, 1 Tbsp active dry yeast, 1C water. Mix everything but water in a bowl. In a separate bowl, put the water and add the flour mixture to it. Let stand uncovered at least 24h or up to 3 days. Add 1 cup water and 1 cup rice flour to starter every day for 7 days. Adjust water added to maintain batter consistency. Keep at room temp if you use regularly. If you'll be away a few days put in refrigerator. Use in any sourdough recipe.

They also have a french bread recipe in the book but it doesn't use sourdough, and it has xanthan gum in it.

Nclleeward (author)2013-11-03

Hi shesparticular
I am keen to try your bread recipe here but first wanted to ask you if I can sub coconut milk. Use Baking powder instead of yeast as I'm sensitive to it, would this turn into a disaster?

I'm sorry, I'm not sure if those modifications would affect the outcome, but it might be worth trying!

Ok I'll give it a whirl.
Many Thanks for relying.
I'll post afterwards and let you know :)

macinsmith (author)2013-04-27

Really great recipe! I'm pleased that there is no xangthum or guar gum. I made a few modifications to this recipe and I made it in the bread machine and it came out great. First I substituted brown rice flour for millet flour and I added chopped walnuts (about 1/2 cup). Another variation was to sub white rice flour for millet flour and cardamum (2 table spoons), 1 tsp cinnamon and half cup chopped almonds. I also doubled the yeast. Now I'm looking for a french bread substitute.

hhs (author)2013-04-03

I've made this recipe 3 times already and it gets better each time! Thanks for sharing!!
The first time I followed the recipe as it is but the dough did not rise as much as I would have liked but still tasted good. The 2nd time I let the yeast bloom with the warm milk and it did rise more than the previous one. This time round as suggested by you I used warm water and sugar worked!! Also I used buckwheat flour as I ran out of millet...the bread is amazing!!

shesparticular (author)hhs2013-04-06


classicalviolinista (author)2013-03-17

I tried this recipe today, and I used buckwheat flour instead of the millet. My dough didn't rise half as much as this did.. Is it because of the flour, or could there be something else? The texture itself was very nice.

Hmm, I've ever used miklet so I'm not certain. Are you certain your yeast was alive? A good test is puttibg some in warm water with honey or sugar and making sure it "blooms". Other than that if your water was too warm it might have killed the yeast. If you give it another shot please do let me know if it turns out better.

nlee13 (author)2012-12-24

How is tapioca flour made?
Is it the flour of cassava or the flour of its product(which looks like tiny small white balls)?

shesparticular (author)nlee132012-12-25

I'm really not sure, but I believe it is the flour of cassava. I've always been able to locate it at the grocery store.

Furballs (author)2012-01-29

I'd think you could substitute ground chia seeds for flaxseeds and get a very similar result, as they have similar properties when wet. Chia actually gets even slimier, not the nicest word, but it does absorb a LOT of water very quickly, so you might have to adjust the liquid amounts to compensate for that. In flavour it's milder than flax, so it should taste just fine. One bit of advice if I may... don't buy your flax or chia pre ground, even if it's been kept cold, it goes bad so fast it's just not worth it and eating rancid oils is a very bad idea. Buy it whole and it's easy to grind the amount you need in a coffee mill, blender or food processor. I plan to try this recipe, it sounds great !

shesparticular (author)Furballs2012-01-29

Chia is an awesome suggestion for a flax substitute, thanks Furballs!

Furballs (author)shesparticular2012-01-29

Glad I had a useful suggestion. I use chia and flax every day in my breakfast mix up, and of the two, I prefer the chia. Milder taste and nicer texture, though of course it costs quite a bit more than flax does.

fluffydragon (author)2011-10-24

I have everything in my cabinet but ground flaxseeds. Is there a substitute for it?

I haven't tried it, but substituting the flax and milk with egg white may work. Outside of that I'm afraid I don't have any suggestions though.

rachl009 (author)2011-02-04

made it today and turned out really good!
I didn't have millet flour, so I used a mixture of sorghum and oat flour instead. And I only had skim milk instead of whole, so I used a little less and added a little melted butter :)

shesparticular (author)rachl0092011-02-04

So glad to hear it turned out well for you!

nikolardo (author)2011-01-22

This turned out breadier than 90% of the recipes my mom has used for gluten-free bread. It's fantastic.

shesparticular (author)nikolardo2011-01-22

So glad to hear it turned out well! This one also is gluten-free and doesn't use gums but it's much lighter and puffier - might also want to give it a try.

CrusaderSerg (author)2011-01-22



mikeasaurus (author)2011-01-21

Way to go, you did it without any gums!
Glad to see there's a recipe like this out there. You're awesome.

Aww, thank you! I think it turned out pretty alright but I'd love to see what other tweaks people might come up with.

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