Gluten-Free Cookie Baking Help
Yes, these are gluten & dairy-free cookies!
Of all the categories of gluten-free baking, it might come as a surprise to you that the one that seems to cause the most problems is not bread, but cookies! (Bread is a very close second, though!)
Particularly if the cookies must be both gluten-free and dairy-free … and (gasp) … what if they must be egg-free, too? Would it surprise you to learn that using Ener-G® Egg Replacer instead of eggs actually helps keep most gluten-free cookie recipes from spreading?!)
While most people tend to get a bit frustrated with their “free from” cookie baking results, if you keep these 10 tips handy next time you’re baking cookies, you’ll be baking your way to moist, chewy success!
10 GF Cookie Baking Tips
1- Cream the butter or shortening with the sugar with an electric mixer before doing anything else. This step will help whip up the butter or shortening and make it fluffier, while also breaking down the sugar a bit, so that it doesn’t melt as much (e.g. spread) when baking.
2- Bake with a combination of butter (or non-dairy butter alternative – i.e. Earth Balance® Buttery Sticks — NOT spreads because they … spread!) and shortening, rather than just butter alone. The combination works to give more body to the dough to prevent spreading. To see more on the benefits of this combination, see my video!
Gluten-Free, Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies
3- Cover cookie sheets with parchment paper for every cookie recipe. It prevents the cookies from sticking to the sheet (and then breaking apart when removed), doesn’t leave a greasy aftertaste on the bottoms of the cookies, and helps you spend less time in the kitchen doing clean-up duty when you’re done!
4- Chill your dough well before baking! (Particularly when dealing with rolled cookie doughs, although I happen to think it’s a good rule of thumb no matter what!)
5- Don’t put too many additions into any cookie recipe. For example, with chocolate chip cookies, adding too many chocolate chips will cause the cookies to spread, as there is not enough dough to bake up for support. This is one reason why I like using Enjoy Life® MINI chips (and they’re dairy, soy & nut-free, too!).
6- If your cookies still insist on spreading, add 1/4 cup of gluten-free flour to them to help hold them together (also helps at high altitude!).
7- Baking by weight, as opposed to volume, is always more accurate. One measured cup of my Jules Gluten Free™ All-Purpose Flour should weigh approximately 135 grams. Measuring your ingredients inaccurately can throw any recipe off, especially finicky cookie recipes!
8- Convection settings tend to work best for cookies. If you have a convection setting on your oven and a convection temperature is not given, simply reduce the static temperature by 25 degrees when using your convection setting.
9- Take your cookies out BEFORE they look done. With chocolate chip cookies, for example, I remove them when the centers still look a bit doughy. As they cool, they are still cooking. Taking them out of the oven at this point will ensure that they stay chewy!
10- Let your cookies cool before removing them from the parchment. I slide the parchment onto wire cooling racks after 5 minutes or so, and let them fully cool before I remove them. Once they’re cooled, they are no longer fragile … but still chewy and delicious!
For more gluten-free cookie recipes, take a peek at my Jules CookiE-book! Also try my delectable and uber-versatile Jules Gluten-Free™ Cookie Mix!
And don’t forget to sign up for all things Gluten-Free Cookie by joining the Gluten-Free Cookie Swap – your community cookie recipe share site!