Friendly Gluten Free Foods

Adventures of a recipe tinkerer and food explorer

Leave a comment


My journey to a healthy diet has changed over the years. I’ve always been dairy free because I get congestion from eating it (ever since I was born). I went gluten free in 2012 to relieve some massive headaches (and it worked!) but then I went plant based in 2017. Then tried plant based but eating gluten (2018) and realized I no longer need to be gluten free. I like to think that being plant based is enough to reduce the inflammation that causes my headaches. So far being plant based instead of eating meat + gluten-free has worked well for me.

This blog in addition to my Instagram is to consolidate my reviews and log recipes I want to keep.

This is my digital notebook of gluten free and dairy free recipes I’ve modified/created as well as reviews of local gluten free bakeries and commercial products labeled as gluten free. My choice to be gluten free is based on medical reasons other than celiacs. My gluten and milk fat sensitivity has physical and mental symptoms that have kept me on a low gluten and a diet low in dairy-fat. Recipes added after Sept 2017 will also be meat free (some baked goods may contain eggs, honey and other animal byproducts).

Hope you enjoy the GF food reviews, the gluten free bakery reviews and recipes! Leave a comment to tell me your thoughts.

Gluten Free Bakery Reviews:



Leave a comment

Vegan smokey tofu bacon

Thinly sliced tofu is dipped in a smoky marinade and baked until chewy to make a tofu “bacon” that’s great for sandwiches and cooking.

Author Yup, it’s Vegan



  1. Freeze the tofu, then thaw on a wire rack with a drip pan.
  1. Drain the tofu. If not using vacuum packed super-firm tofu, wrap it in a clean towel and stack a heavy object (like a cast iron pan) on top of it to press out excess liquid. (Or, use a tofu press if you’ve got one). Leave the tofu to press while you measure out the other ingredients.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Place a metal rack on top of a baking sheet and lightly grease it. (If desired, put a piece of parchment on the baking sheet to catch drips, for easy cleanup).
  3. Whisk together the remaining ingredients in a medium sized bowl.
  4. Cut the tofu into thin strips, approximately 1/8 inch thick or thinner for more crispy. Take each tofu slice and dip it fully into the marinade, then place it on the prepared baking rack. Repeat until all of the tofu slices are dipped, spacing them out evenly on the rack. Set aside the excess marinade.
  5. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove the baking sheet from the oven. Gently flip over each piece of tofu. Brush or dab the tops of each tofu piece with some of the remaining marinade. Return to the oven and bake for another 5 to 10 minutes, or until browning around the edges and starting to take on a firm texture – it can burn quickly so keep a close eye on it. Remove from the oven, let cool, and enjoy!

Recipe Notes

SMOKED TOFU: If you can get your hands on some smoked tofu, then by all means use it. It’s super amazing in this recipe!

CRISPY/CHEWY: If you want your tofu bacon to have a little more crisp around the edges versus a uniform chewiness, slice your tofu thinner and shorten the oven time a little bit since it will be more likely to burn this way.

Leave a comment

Challah Bread

This bread is not gluten free nor vegan. It creates two loaves and I highly recommend mastering the 6 strand braid (over 2, under 1, over 2) or a circular braid because the bread stretches beautifully. My photos show I am still learning these techniques.

1.5 cups water
1/4 cup sugar or honey or agave
3 tsp salt
1/3 cup butter/margarine or olive oil (olive oil will give it a deeper flavor)
2 envelopes active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water
3 eggs + 1 to 2 egg yolks, separated (for brushing)
7.5 cups all purpose flour or bread flour (more chewy) or a combination of both

Combine first 4 ingredients in a small sauce pan. Heat slowly until butter melts and sugar dissolves. Allow to cool to lukewarm.

In a large mixing bowl, add yeast and warm water, stir lightly and let rest for 5 minutes.

Beat 3 whole eggs in a small bowl. Combine water/sugar mixture and eggs. Add sugar/egg mixture to yeast mixture in large bowl. Mix till combined. Slowly beat in 4 cups of flour to yeast mixture, then mix until smooth. Beat in the rest of the flour to make a soft dough. Kneed 5 minutes by hand or with mixer using minimal flour.

Lightly coat large bowl with oil, place kneaded dough into bowl and then flip. Cover with a towel and let rise 1.5 hours in a warm place or until doubled (my house is cold so I put it in the microwave – not turning on the microwave).

Lightly pat down to remove some of the air from the dough and let rise for another 1 hour in a warm place, covered. Turn out onto floured surface and shape into two 6 strand braids or two circular braided loaves. Place on greased or silicone mat lined cookie sheet(s). Brush lightly with 1 to 2 egg yolks (discard egg white) depending on size of loaves and place remainder of egg yolks in fridge. Let loaves rise 1/2 hour more (this 3rd rise is very important).

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees. After final rise, brush loaves with remaining egg yolks from fridge and bake for 30 minutes. For a soft crust, brush with very cold water immediately after taking loaves out of oven.

Enjoy warm or cold. Bread can be frozen.

This is the size of a loaf if you only make one instead of split it into two. Huge!

Leave a comment

Chickpea and herb pita pockets – eMeals

This is another meal that I enjoyed so much that I had to keep it for future. I used fresh pita from the local farmer’s market vendor.

1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/3 cup thinly sliced red onion
2 Tbsp torn fresh mint (or use more basil)
2 Tbsp torn fresh basil
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp ground cumin
2 Tbsp vegan mayonnaise
2 pita round pockets, cut in half
1/2 cup baby spinach
1 roma tomato

Combine first 6 ingredients in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Spread mayo among pita halves or add directly to the bowl and mix. Divide spinach, tomato, and chickpea mixture among pita halves. Enjoy!

Leave a comment

Cafe blueberry squares

This recipe is from A Passion for Baking by Marcy Goldman.

Crust and topping

  • 1-1/2 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups of rolled oats
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar (or 3/4 c for lower sugar option)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup unsalted vegan butter, cut into chunks


  • 3 cups blueberries or 2 cups blueberries and 1 cup raspberries
  • 3/4 cup sugar (could reduce to 1/2 cup for less sugar)
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch or flour
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Spray an 11 x 7“ baking pan with nonstick cooking spray and place pan on parchment lined baking sheet.

In a food processor put flour oats brown sugar baking powder salt and cinnamon and pulse until blend about 20 seconds. Add butter and pulse cut butter into dry ingredients until you have a mask, not dry but not sticky together.

For filling, tossed berries in a bowl with sugar, cornstarch, and lemon juice.Spread or pat half the oatmeal mixture firmly into pan. Spread on blueberry mixture. Top as evenly as you can with remaining oatmeal mixture and press lightly. Chill 30 minutes.Spray an 11 x 7“ baking pan with nonstick cooking spray and place pan on parchment lined baking sheet.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake 40 to 45 minutes until fruit starts to bubble; then reduce oven temperature to 325°F and bake until done, another 15 to 20 minutes or until fruit that Bubbles is deeper in color and edges of squares are browned.

Cool completely and pan before cutting or refrigerate 2 to 3 hours before cutting.