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20 Gluten-Free Cooking and Baking Essentials

Embracing a gluten-free lifestyle doesn’t mean sacrificing flavor or variety in your cooking and baking. With the right supplies in your kitchen, you can create delicious gluten-free dishes that satisfy your taste buds. In this guide, we’ll explore must-have gluten-free cooking and baking essentials, highlighting why each ingredient is essential and providing examples of what you can make with them, including popular brand recommendations.

Gluten-Free Flour Blend

A high-quality gluten-free flour blend is the backbone of gluten-free baking. It mimics the structure and texture that gluten provides in traditional flours.

Use it for baking anything from cookies and cakes to bread and pizza crust. A popular brand is Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour.

Xanthan Gum

Xanthan gum is a crucial binding agent in gluten-free baking. It helps improve the texture and elasticity of your baked goods.

Add xanthan gum to your flour blend when making bread, muffins, or pancakes. Bob’s Red Mill Xanthan Gum is a commonly used and reliable brand.

Almond Flour

Almond flour adds a rich, nutty flavor and moisture to gluten-free recipes. It’s a popular choice for those looking to reduce carbohydrate intake.

Bake almond flour into cookies, cakes, or use it as a coating for chicken or fish. Try Anthony’s Almond Flour for a finely ground option.

Coconut Flour

Coconut flour is a high-fiber alternative, contributing a subtle coconut flavor to your dishes. It absorbs a lot of moisture, so use it sparingly.

Incorporate coconut flour into pancakes, muffins, or use it to coat vegetables before baking. Bob’s Red Mill Organic Coconut Flour is a widely available choice.

Gluten-Free Oats

Certified gluten-free oats are perfect for those who miss the hearty texture of oats without the gluten.

Create gluten-free oatmeal, granola, or use oats in your baking recipes. Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Rolled Oats is a popular brand.

Gluten-Free Baking Powder

Gluten-free baking powder is necessary for leavening, ensuring your baked goods rise properly without gluten.

Use it in cakes, biscuits, or any recipe that requires a rise. Clabber Girl Gluten-Free Baking Powder is a reliable option.

Gluten-Free Pasta

Enjoying a comforting bowl of pasta is still possible with gluten-free options, which are typically made from rice, corn, or quinoa flour.

Create your favorite pasta dishes using gluten-free pasta varieties. Barilla Gluten-Free Pasta offers a range of shapes.

Gluten-Free Soy Sauce or Tamari

Traditional soy sauce contains wheat, so opting for gluten-free soy sauce or tamari ensures you can enjoy savory dishes without gluten.

Use it in stir-fries, marinades, and dipping sauces. San-J Gluten-Free Tamari is a widely available option.

Gluten-Free Breadcrumbs

Gluten-free breadcrumbs are a versatile ingredient for coating and binding, providing a crispy texture without gluten.

Use them to coat chicken, fish, or create gluten-free meatballs. Ian’s Gluten-Free Panko Breadcrumbs are a popular choice.

Gluten-Free Baking Soda

Baking soda is a leavening agent that helps your baked goods rise, especially when paired with an acid.

Include it in recipes like quick bread, cookies, or pancakes. Arm & Hammer Gluten-Free Baking Soda is a reliable option.

Arrowroot Starch or Tapioca Flour

These starches serve as excellent thickening agents, making them ideal for soups, sauces, and gravies.

Use arrowroot starch or tapioca flour to thicken your favorite sauces or make gluten-free gravy. Bob’s Red Mill Arrowroot Starch is a common brand.

Gluten-Free Vanilla Extract

Some vanilla extracts may contain gluten-based additives, so choosing a certified gluten-free option is crucial for flavoring your baked goods.

Enhance the flavor of cakes, cookies, and desserts with gluten-free vanilla extract. McCormick Gluten-Free Pure Vanilla Extract is widely available.


Quinoa is a versatile and protein-rich grain that can serve as a base for various dishes.

Cook quinoa as a side dish, use it in salads, or incorporate it into gluten-free baking recipes. Bob’s Red Mill Quinoa is a popular choice.

Gluten-Free Chocolate Chips

Enjoying chocolate treats is still on the table with gluten-free chocolate chips, perfect for adding sweetness to your baking.

Bake gluten-free cookies, brownies, or melt them for drizzling over desserts. Enjoy Life Semi-Sweet Chocolate Mini Chips are a common gluten-free option.

Gluten-Free Yeast

Gluten-free yeast allows you to make bread that rises properly without traditional wheat-based gluten.

Bake gluten-free bread, rolls, or pizza crust with gluten-free yeast. Red Star Gluten-Free Active Dry Yeast is a popular choice.

Gluten-Free Cornstarch

Cornstarch is a great thickening agent and can be used in gluten-free baking for added lightness.

Use it to thicken sauces, soups, or make gluten-free cakes and cookies. Clabber Girl Cornstarch is a widely available option.

Gluten-Free All-Purpose Baking Mix

A pre-made gluten-free baking mix is convenient for creating a variety of baked goods without having to mix individual flours.

Bake pancakes, waffles, or use it as a base for various recipes. King Arthur Gluten-Free All-Purpose Baking Mix is a recommended choice.

Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Butter Substitute

A dairy-free butter substitute ensures your recipes are both gluten-free and dairy-free, catering to various dietary needs.

Use it in baking or cooking where butter is required. Earth Balance Vegan Buttery Sticks are a popular gluten-free and dairy-free option.

Gluten-Free Pancake and Waffle Mix

A ready-made gluten-free pancake and waffle mix makes breakfast preparation quick and easy.

Whip up delicious gluten-free pancakes or waffles for a delightful morning treat. Cup4Cup Gluten-Free Pancake & Waffle Mix is a well-reviewed choice.

Gluten-Free Cereal

Many cereals contain gluten, so having a gluten-free option on hand ensures a quick and convenient breakfast.

Enjoy it with milk or yogurt or use it as a crunchy topping for desserts. Nature’s Path Organic Gluten-Free Cereal offers various options.

Armed with these additional gluten-free cooking and baking essentials, your kitchen is well-equipped to tackle a diverse range of recipes. From savory meals to sweet treats, these ingredients will make your gluten-free culinary adventures a flavorful success.

Experiment with different brands to find the ones that suit your taste and dietary preferences best. Happy gluten-free cooking and baking!

What are the gluten free essential ingredients you keep in your pantry? Let us know in the comments!