Gluten Free Vegan Alternative Ingredients

Gluten Free Vegan Alternative Ingredients

    One of the biggest challenges with a gluten free vegan diet is finding recipes that are tasty and satisfying. The list of prohibited foods is long, but you can still create delicious meals and even some family favorites by substituting ingredients and learning to use fragrant spices and colorful vegetables in your dishes. Let’s start by discussing some vegan and gluten free substitutes for popular ingredients.

    Eggs are a great source of protein and a common binding agent in a myriad of recipes. Thankfully, you can use several replacement ingredients, depending on the type of dish you are creating. A few examples include :
    Sweet Dishes- Cakes, cookies and other desserts

    • Applesauce- ¼ cup for each egg
    • Vinegar and Baking powder- when you have a recipe calling for three or more eggs, you can use this substitute: 1 tablespoon each vinegar, water and baking powder.
    • Potato Starch- 2 heaping tablespoons
    • Pureed banana- ¼ cup per egg (for lighter cakes the conversion is 3 tablespoons per egg)
    • Water- ¼ cup per egg
    • Soy Yogurt- ¼ per egg
    • Arrowroot- 2 heaping teaspoons per egg
    • Binding Agents- non-desert recipes
    • 2-3 Tablespoons- mashed potato flakes, arrowroot powder or tomato paste
    • Vegetable Oil- ¼ cup per egg
    • Flax Seed- 1 tablespoon ground seed to 3 tablespoons of water (great source of omega 3’s)

    If you like to bake cakes, cookies and breads you will need gluten free flour substitutes. You might be inclined to think you can just grab a gluten free alternative off the shelf and substitute it cup for cup in your favorite recipe, however it is not quite that simple. Gluten free alternatives have different textures, flavors and fat contents. For example coconut flour absorbs water like crazy and almond flour has a distinct flavor.
    A good alternative is to create your own all-purpose flour mixture.
    Alternative Flour Mixture:

    • 1 ½ cup millet flour
    • 1 ½ cup sorghum flour
    • 1 ¾ cup potato starch

    As you begin creating your own dishes you will probably want to tinker with the above mixture, feel free to mix and match ingredients and amounts until you find the perfect all-purpose flour alternative for your favorite dishes.
    Gluten Free Flours

    • Bean Flours:
    • Kinako- roasted soy flour
    • Garbanzo bean
    • Fava bean
    • White Flours
    • Sweet rice
    • White rice
    • Tapioca
    • Nut Flours
    • Coconut
    • Almond
    • Chestnut
    • Whole Grain
    • Brown rice
    • Quinoa
    • Teff

    In the beginning your recipes will be more like mini-adventures, but that is half the fun! Why make gluten free vegan living a boring endeavor? If you happen to opt for dark buckwheat as a gluten free flour alternative, you should know your dish will have a decided purple hue.

    Butter has several roles in baking, it can act as a binding agent, leavening agent, adds flavor and sometimes texture. However, since it is a dairy product it must be stricken from the vegan shopping list. Thankfully it is fairly easy to replace. Here are a few options:
    Butter to Olive Oil:

    • 1 teaspoon- ¾ teaspoon
    • 1 tablespoon- 2 ¼ teaspoon
    • ¼ cup- 3 tablespoons

    For cookies or recipes where creamed butter is required coconut oil is a better option. You can use identical quantities 
    and then simply beat the coconut butter to a semi-solid state. Other butter substitutes include but are not limited to:

    • Untoasted sesame seed oil
    • Vegan shortening
    • Canola oil

    Milk Substitutes 

    Probably one of the easiest substitutions to make today as there are already a number of non-dairy alternatives available at your local grocery store. A few you might want to consider include:

    • Almond Milk
    • Soy Milk
    • Coconut milk
    • Non-dairy powdered milk
    • Meat Substitutes

    Not all vegans are interested in substituting for meat, however if you would still like the occasional burger or do not fancy spaghetti with sauce alone, you may want some alternatives. One thing you have to watch with popular commercial vegan meat substitutes is the wheat content. For the gluten free vegan diet, you will have to stick with soy and tofu based alternatives, but make sure you read the ingredients list. Tofu is generally the go to meat replacement as it is basically tasteless and will take on the flavor of whatever seasonings you use in your dish.
    Now that you have some idea of what you should add to your shopping list, it is time to get on with some tasty recipes! Here are a few tried and tested gluten free vegan recipes you can add to your recipe caddy.

    Vegan Pasta

    • 2 cups chickpea flour
    • 12 tablespoons water
    • 4 tablespoons ground flaxseed

    Mix together flaxseed and warm water, gently whisk ingredients together and set aside. On your cutting / rolling board, pour your chickpea flour, making a mound of sorts. Create 
    a well in the center. Once the flaxseed mixture has jelled, (five minutes or so) pour in the middle of your flour well.
    Mix chickpea flour and flaxseed together gently, forming a dough ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and allow to sit at room temperature for approximately half an hour.
    The key to making tasty pasta with chickpea flour is getting the dough rolled thin enough, which can be a challenge. If you plan to do this the old fashioned way, (roller and countertop) make sure to use small portions of the dough at a time. Roll very thin, cut into squares and create bowtie pasta. (Easiest pasta form to make without a pasta machine).

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