My mission on this page is to help educate you on how to bake healthy, gluten-free, allergy-friendly, and plant-powered recipes using real, whole & clean foods. I also want you to know that just because you are limited, doesn't mean you still can't enjoy delicious things and live a delicious life.
Are all your recipes on your site gluten-free?
YES. EVERYTHING on my site is always 100 percent GLUTEN-FREE. This includes all recipes, all food, cosmetic & lifestyle brands I work with or write about. I have been living a gluten-free Celiac lifestyle since 2006.
Why is there no gluten-free recipe category under your recipes list?
Because EVERYTHING is gluten-free. This whole site is gluten-free.
I'm new to gluten-free baking, which flours are naturally gluten-free?
There are many types of flours that are gluten-free, just make sure whatever brand you buy states they are certified gluten-free. Certified gluten-free means that the final product is tested through a Celiac Approved method of testing ensuring that any flour with this label is confirmed safe to consume. You can also make your own oat flour and flaxmeal by grinding up the oats or seeds in a high-speed blender and storing in a glass jar in the fridge.
Gluten-free flours are:
- Gluten-free all purpose flour
- Garbanzo Bean flour
- Fava Bean flour
- Black Bean flour
- Pea flour
- White Rice flour
- Brown Rice flour
- Sweet White flour
- Sorghum flour
- Hazelnut flour
- Millet flour
- Teff flour
- Quinoa flour
- Almond flour
- Potato flour
- Tapioca flour
- Sweet Potato flour
- Butternut Squash flour
- Apple flour
- Banana flour
- Pumpkin flour
- Buckwheat flour
- Certified Gluten-Free Oat flour
- Certified Gluten-Free Oats
- Ground Flax or Flaxmeal
- Cassava flour
- Tigernut flour
- Coconut flour
What kind of flours do you use and like? Do you use any specific brands?
There are a few brands I really trust. I often use Bob's Red Mill Certified Gluten-Free flours, Otto's Cassava flour, Organic Gemini TigerNut flour, Anti-Grain flours. Organic Gemini products are made in a gluten-free facility. Otto's Cassava flour is certified paleo and certified gluten-free, and made in a gluten-free facility. Anti-Grain is made in a separate gluten-free room in a larger facility.
What is Xanthan Gum?
Xanthan Gum is made from a string of sugars. It is a form of bacteria that is fermented on sugar. A small amount is used to hold the recipe together and prevent holes in the baking process. Without this ingredient, you may see tiny to larger holes in your baked goods, or bread. You may also experience an extra crumbly baked good or bread, and it will be unable to hold itself together. Xanthan gum is used in bread, doughs, cookies, cakes, pancakes, waffles, crepes and other desserts and bread as a plant-based thickening agent and stabilizing agent. It also acts as an emulsifier, by encouraging liquids that normally don't like one another to actually mix together and it adds a creamy texture.
Is there anything else to use in replace of Xanthan gum? Can I leave it out?
Gluten-free baking needs Xanthan Gum, or at least a substance similar in order to have success with gluten-free baking. You can use a guar gum, chia seeds, flax seeds or Psyllium husk instead. The reason Chia and Flax seeds work is because of their magical function once put into liquid is that they expand, thicken and stick.
What baking mixes do you prefer for cookies, cakes, brownies, and pancakes?
I don't use baking mixes anymore unless it's a request from a client or reader which you may find 1 or two recipes on my blog using a mix. For myself and 99 percent of this blog, I bake from scratch. However, I understand how hard this can be when newly diagnosed with Celiac Disease or having to go gluten-free immediately, so my favorite mixes for newbies are King Arthur baking mixes, Wholesome Chow Organic Mixes, My Grandpa's Farm, Pamela's, Kinnikinnick, 1-2-3 Gluten-Free. The two organic mixes out of all of these are Wholesome Chow Organic Mixes & My Grandpa's Farm.
If I have a recipe that calls for wheat flour, can I substitute gluten-free flour instead?
This is actually a bit more complicated than a simple answer. Because gluten-free flour doesn't function the same way that wheat flour does, in most cases you will have to use multiple types of gluten-free flours to create a blend and more of them to make the recipe taste as it did with the wheat flour. There are some occasions where you can use a cup for cup. But it all depends on the recipe, what the other ingredients are and what gluten-free flours you plan on using. If you are really curious, simply ask your question in a comment below the blog post you are inquiring about and I'll respond. I usually respond faster to comments then emails.
What alternative sweeteners do you prefer?
I will always prefer natural sweeteners over refined (white/brown sugar) sweeteners because they play a different role in the body - a better role if you are going to consume sugar. Some natural sugars that I love working with are:
- Pure Grade Maple Syrup
- Maple Sugar
- Date Sugar
- Medjool Dates
- Mulberry Berries
- Coconut Sugar
- Lucuma Powder
- Gluten-Free Brown Rice Syrup
- Coconut Nectar
- Yucca syrup
- Raw Honey (if you are not vegan)
- Stevia (which is a plant-based sugar-free sweetener that's 10 times sweeter than regular sugar).
What is Lucuma?
Lucuma is a superfood powder made from a Turkish fruit that is often used as a sugar alternative. Lucuma powder is severely low in sugar, will not raise inulin levels, and does not cause sugar crashes, sugar blues or sugar highs. And it's suitable for Diabetics. It's all natural and lovely in smoothies, desserts, cakes, pies, and yogurts. It has a butterscotch flavor and is guilt-free. There is 1 gram of natural sugar per 2 teaspoons. (This is not an option for tea or coffee). Make sure you buy your superfood powders from companies that are certified gluten-free.
Is Agave Syrup considered a healthy source of sugar?
No. It is 80% fructose, the type of sugar our bodies have a VERY hard time assimilating and digesting in the body causing massive crashes, highs, lows and symptoms like mood changes and acne. Dr. Lipman of Eleven Eleven Wellness once said that Agave is just as bad as cane sugar. So if you are going to use this form of sugar, know the facts before you decide to use it in larger consumptions.
Does it matter what type of Stevia I use?
YES. Not all Stevia is created equal. Many of the packaged Stevia's you see at the market will say they are 100% natural, which is not the case always if you flip the box over and look at the actual ingredients. Some will say they have Dextrose (which is sugar), Maltodextrin and other additives in the ingredient lists that prove it's anything but natural. Those are the ones you want to stay away from. My two favorite brands are Nu Naturals Alcohol-Free Plain Liquid Stevia (no aftertaste at all) and Sweet Leaf 100% Natural Stevia Sweetener Powder.
Is Spelt gluten-free?
No. Never! Spelt has never been gluten-free. It comes from the Wheat family and should be avoided like the plague.
I can't have eggs, do your recipes use egg replacements?
Yes. I am sensitive to eggs so I rarely use them in my recipes. I am continuously evolving with experimenting with different egg replacements. My favorites so far are:
- Chickpea juice 3T = 1 egg
- Sweet potato puree
- Pumpkin puree
- Flax egg
- Chia egg
I can't have dairy, do your recipes use dairy and/or butter replacements?
Yes. I am sensitive to dairy so I rarely use dairy or butter in my recipes! I am continuously evolving with experimenting with different butter replacements. My favorites so far are:
- mashed avocado
- pear puree
- coconut yogurt
- coconut oil
- nut or seed butter
Do you think xyz will work as a substitution in your recipe?
It depends on the recipe and the ingredient you want to use. Leave your specific question in a comment on the recipe's blog post if you are really curious. I respond much faster to blog comments.
I'm allergic to nuts, what can I do?
I don't use many nuts in my recipes, due to my own nut sensitivities, however for the few that do use nuts, you can easily replace with sunflower or pumpkin seeds and the same goes for the nut butter. Simply replace with a seed butter of your choice. It will change the taste, but It will still taste good. Some good replacements for nuts in my recipes are:
- Sunflower seeds or Sunflower butter
- Pumpkin seeds or Pumpkin seed butter
- Hemp seeds or Hemp butter
- Chia seeds or Chia Seed butter
- I'm not a huge fan of Sesame seeds or Tahini, but you can try it - I just cannot guarantee good results.
If I'm watching my sugars including natural sugars, what are some low fructose fruits I can enjoy?
Green Apples (Granny Smith), Limes, Lemons, Cantaloupe melon, Honeydew melon, Grapefruit, Strawberries, Blueberries, Acai, Kiwi, and Avocados.
Why is it important to reduce sugars from my diet?
Sugar is used as fuel for any disease. Sugar increases your risk of Cancer and Cancer growth. Sugar increases your risk for Heart Disease. Sugar increases your risk for type II Diabetes. Sugar fuels and causes Acne. Sugar causes headaches. Sugar causes weight gain. Sugar causes wrinkles and ages the body. Sugar causes negative mood changes as well as super highs and very low lows. Sugar makes you tired and groggy. Sugar causes inflammation. Too much sugar can also cause an overgrowth of yeast in any area of your body which can then turn into Candida related conditions or a bad bacteria. It's a vicious cycle. It is common for those of us with an already compromised immune system to develop secondary autoimmune diseases and other medical complications or conditions which are fed by sugar. Sugar fuels a negative response in your body, even though while eating it, it may feel good. Many doctors compare sugar to the drug Heroin.
Can I use milk in my smoothies instead of a plant-based alternative milk?
You can, but I don't advise it. Dairy is very inflammatory and contains a lot of sugar. Plant alternative milks are a healthier option and in my opinion taste so good in smoothies and baking well over skim or regular milk. One cup of skim milk contains 12 grams of sugar!
If your recipe calls for a few tablespoons of plant alternative milk, can I use a different plant-alternative milk?
In most cases like baked goods, yes. In smoothies, it will change the taste, but you can totally switch it up. If you are concerned or curious, comment on the recipe post with this question if you want to double check with me and I'll confirm.
If your baking recipe calls for plant-based milk, can I use dairy milk?
Yes. It's interchangeable. You won't notice it in the recipe when it's baked.
If your recipe calls for unsweetened plant-based milk, can I use sweetened plant-based milk?
Yes. I just like to use as little sugar as possible.
Why do you use chickpea juice in some of your baking recipes?
Because it is an egg replacement, and I find it works very well. And no you cannot taste it. Chickpea juice is the same consistency as an egg white.
What's the difference between juicing and blending smoothies?
Juicing removes the fiber and pulp of the vegetables and fruit, quickly flooding your body and with a wave of powerful nutrients straight into your bloodstream without needing to go through the digestive process. Smoothies or Blending does not remove the fiber or the pulp - It's simply broken down enough so that it is easily digestible. One option isn't "better" than the other. It completely depends on your body. Personally, I like both and drink both. I'm a big fan of my morning celery juice and breakfast smoothies.
Why didn't your recipe work for me?
I'm not sure, but I'm happy to help you try and figure it out. The comments section of a recipe post is a great place to have that discussion so other readers can benefit from what you've figured out and contribute to the conversation. Sometimes recipes have typos or need further clarification, so if you find something confusing please leave a comment or drop me an email so we can get it cleared up.
Do you eat everything you make?
Yes. All the smoothies, snacks and juices you see on this blog I drink and eat often. While I LOVE my baked goods and raw treats (like LOVE!), I'll taste a little, save some and give the rest away, otherwise, I would eat it all and that's just not healthy.
How many calories are in this recipe? Do you have the calorie content?
Nope. I don't focus on calories. I focus on whole and clean foods.
If you have any other questions not listed here, please address your question below the recipe post by leaving a comment and I will get back to you.