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Recipe & Picture Time: Gluten-Free Banana Bread

Monday, December 06, 2010

I have a backlog of recipes and pictures that I have been sifting through. While I thought I was busy the rest of the year, I realized that once November hits I am swamped with seemingly endless housework and holiday hoopla.

While I still feel out of my element when it comes to gluten-free cooking and baking (does this stuff ever get any easier?) I am starting to find some recipes I enjoy. And I also wonder how long I have until I can stop complaining about having to go gluten-free? I think Iíve already passed that point, but luckily none of my loved ones have told me to be quiet yet. emoticon

But on to some baking, we need to preheat the oven to 350 degrees so we can enjoy this. (Full recipe with exact measurements are at the bottom).

Now usually with banana bread I wait until the bananas are really ripe so that the bread is super sweet. But I was anxious to try it, so I went with what I had.

Grab a large bowl to cream together the wet ingredients.

Oh yeah and you might want to grab the ingredients when you grab the bowl, you know to make things easier on yourself! Youíll need eggs (or egg replacements), vanilla, applesauce, and brown sugar.

In a separate bowl combine the dry ingredients. I used Bobís Red Mill All-Purpose gluten-free flour blend, but you may use whatever combination of flours you like! I also used baking powder, cinnamon, xanthan gum, and salt.

Slowly add dry mixture to the wet, alternating with mashed banana. Beat everything until smooth. I blended it, but didnít over-mix. I wanted lots of banana chunks.

Transfer to a greased large loaf pan. You can also sprinkle some extra cinnamon on top if you like.

Bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool before transferring to a cutting board to serve and enjoy. (To me, this is the hardest part).


Gluten-Free Banana Bread (adapted from Bobís Red Mill)

2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup applesauce
2/3 cup brown sugar, packed (145 grams)
1 ĺ cup gluten-free flour mix (210 grams)
2 tsp baking powder
1 ľ tsp cinnamon, (1 tsp in mixture and ľ tsp on top)
1 tsp xanthan gum
Ĺ tsp salt
1 Ĺ cups mashed banana (250 grams)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cream together eggs, vanilla, applesauce, and brown sugar in a large bowl. In a separate bowl combine flour mixture, xanthan gum, salt, baking powder and 1 tsp cinnamon. Slowly add dry mixture to the wet, alternating with mashed banana. Beat until smooth.

Transfer to a greased large loaf pan. Optional: Sprinkle ľ tsp of cinnamon on top.

Bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool before transferring to a cutting board to serve and enjoy!

While this recipe was husband, friend and kid-approved, I felt it was missing a little something. And NO it is not missing nuts! It is one of my top pet peeves when people add nuts to baked goods. Want some nuts? Eat them on the side! I love them that way. But in my baked goods? No, thank you!

The texture was more bread-like than banana bread-like. Does that make any sense? Iím thinking maybe a bit more applesauce and/or a bit less flour. I love adding applesauce to baked goods because it usually makes them chewier and moister.

But still, I didnít turn down two slices!


The holiday season isn't over yet, though! So I have many more things to enjoy. Right now, I'm eating one of these gluten-free gingerbread cookies I made with my husband, niece and nephew.

What are your favorite things to bake during the holidays?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MDTWEETY 12/7/2010 8:34AM

    So far I have made rugelach (not gluten-free, unfortunately) and buckeyes. I need to stop making treats so I don't have so many temptations in the house. Thankfully we gave the buckeyes away the next day (they were gifts but of course I *had * to sample some. Had to make sure they tasted OK. ;)

Comment edited on: 12/7/2010 8:39:49 AM

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AUBREYINGMAN 12/7/2010 1:47AM

    The banana bread was very tasty but I really liked the cookies.

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DJ4HEALTH 12/6/2010 10:45PM

    They look good and will have to try them when I get home.

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CARRAND 12/6/2010 8:34PM

    I'm so glad you shared this. I've been gluten intolerant for 15 years. Most of the time I don't even miss it anymore. But that banana bread looks wonderful.

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*AMBER512 12/6/2010 5:37PM

    Thanks for the tips! I think I needed to let the bananas ripen a bit more, too. The taste was there, but the texture was just a little off. Honey would probably be REALLY good in this! Yum.

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HANNAH_CALM 12/6/2010 4:46PM

    I love to bake snickerdoodle and peanut butter cookies. That's all I know how to make, really. I'm hoping to expand my repetoire by learning how to make different kinds of breads, and pizza. Hey, my mom has this book, Fat Free Baking, by Sandra Woodruff, R.N., and it has this list of liquid sweeteners, that maybe you could substitute for the brown sugar, to add moistness. They are: honey, molasses, maple syrup, brown rice syrup, Fruit Source liquid, chocolate syrup, fruit juice concentrates, and fruit spreads or jams. I hope that helps you. Also, you might want to add at least one more banana, if it doesn't taste enough like banana bread.

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Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie : Recipes and Pictures

Monday, November 29, 2010

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!

It was an interesting experience for me since I wasnít even sure what I would be able to eat. Having to be gluten-free and not in control of the menu is a bit nerve-racking. It turned out that the only thing I could eat was the bean salad that I brought.

That would be garbanzo beans, black beans, kidney beans, onions and cilantro mixed with a red wine vinegar dressing.

Red wine vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper.

Which, I ended up not minding. I had eaten a mini-meal before arriving just in case they didnít realize a particular seasoning wasnít good, or if foods were accidentally served with the same spoons or any other of a million cross-contamination issues.

I did eat a couple of sweet pickles that were on a tray, but then wondered about them. While the pickles Iím sure were fine, what was to stop someone from digging in to the rolls and then grabbing some pickles? It was enough to make me pause and concentrate on my bean salad!

Friday evening was another dinner (gotta fit in all of the family!) This one was easier as the chef was very recently diagnosed with Celiac herself. Very recently as in less than a week before! She is still in the process of decontaminating her kitchen, but I knew that at least the dishes wouldnít have gluten in them. She even made a gluten-free apple pie. It didnít turn out, but we ate some anyway!

Working with gluten-free recipes can lead to some flops! Besides the bean salad that I brought to both dinners, I also made a gluten-free pumpkin pie. The first one I made flopped, but I found out that was because the magazine printed the wrong version of the recipe I was using. Following the correct recipe from the internet yielded much better results!

Visit Jules Shepard's website at blog.julesglutenfree.com/?p=350 for the correct recipe! Practice it and you can make it for your next holiday party!

Itís supposed to be a ďcrustlessĒ pumpkin pie, with the flour in the recipe making sort of a crust at the bottom. Well the wrong recipe certainly didnít yield a crust, considering it wasn't supposed to!

But the correct recipe in the link I provided tastes amazing.

I gathered my wet ingredients. (eggs, pumpkin, oil, almond milk, vanilla, cream)

And my dry ingredients. (baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, sugar, salt, brown sugar, and gluten-free all-purpose flour)

I baked it up and fully enjoyed a pie that didnít hurt my insides!

Topped with freshly made whipped cream: itís divine.

How was your holiday? Oh, and am I the only one who refuses to decorate for Christmas until December?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DJ4HEALTH 11/29/2010 6:32PM

    Looks good will have to try it once I get home. emoticon

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ILLINITEACHER52 11/29/2010 6:15PM

  I also made gfcf pumpkin pie. I made mine with a gf crust made from gf ginger snap cookies. I don't decorate until Dec. 1 (or after) also. It is not DEc. yet and it definitely isn't winter yet. (I would like to put off winter for a few more weeks at least.)

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MDTWEETY 11/29/2010 2:50PM

    Glad you had a good Thanksgiving, Amber. And that pie looks great. Good you were able to enjoy some pie as well.

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BANKER-CHUCK 11/29/2010 1:20PM

    Everything looks good. We have a bean salad similar to yours, less the cilantro, instead use vinegar and canola oil. I like the cilantro idea and will add it to our next "batch".

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New Recipe & Pictures : Pumpkin Enchiladas

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

I'm currently sitting in my apartment because I am iced in! The main roads seem to be fine, but actually getting TO them is a problem, especially since my car doors are iced shut! I'm thinking about baking some gluten free treats to warm up! But before I try some new recipes, I decided to share one that I tried recently!

This last week I tried pumpkin enchiladas and it was inspired by a recipe I saw somewhere, but sadly I canít figure out where I found it.

I have actually made something similar before that I believe was inspired by Hungry Girlís recipe. And to be honest, I wasnít a fan of either. My husband was a huge fan, but both taste way too much like pumpkin to me.

In fact, I had something else entirely for dinner. But I still thought I would share since it is so simple and perfect for Fall. I think using half as much pumpkin would taste a LOT better, so maybe Iíll try it again.

First I made some enchilada sauce. It was an interesting experience as I attempted to find gluten-free enchilada sauce. I finally just gave up and found what looked like a really easy homemade recipe.

I got all of my ingredients out first.

1 1/3 cup low-sodium vegetable broth (check to make sure itís gluten-free if youíre like me)
1 tbsp plus 1 tsp chili powder
Ĺ tsp ground cumin
Ĺ tsp onion powder
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp arrowroot powder dissolved in 2 tbsp water (you can also use corn starch if thatís what you have on hand)

In a small saucepan bring all of the ingredients (EXCEPT* arrowroot or corn starch mixture) to a boil over medium heat.

*Remember that word except, or youíll be like me and have to dump everything out and start over!

Whisk in the arrowroot (or corn starch) mixture and boil for one minute, whisking constantly. Remove from heat.

I actually made this the day before and had to whisk it again before adding to the enchiladas. You just want to make sure it is nice a smooth with no lumps.

Alright, letís move on to the actual enchiladas. The hardest thing about this recipe was that the ingredients and the instructions werenít very specific. I donít know everything! I like to follow recipes completely until I figure out what I like and then I improvise.

First up I diced ĺ cup of onion and sautťed that with two minced cloves of garlic until ďsoft.Ē I wasnít sure what that meant, but they smelled good!

While that did its thing, I combined mashed kidney beans, pumpkin, a ďlarge bunchĒ of cilantro, cumin, chili powder, and about half of the enchilada sauce in a large bowl.

Then itís time to spread some of the remaining enchilada sauce on the bottom of the baking pan so it is ready for some enchiladas!

I heated up the corn tortillas in the microwave so that they would be more flexible. The recipe called for four large corn tortillas, but I couldnít find any large ones so I used eight mini tortillas.

As you can see some breakage occurred. There was a LOT of filling for those poor tiny tortillas! The seven amigos hung out while number eight floated on his own up at the top.

I topped them with the remaining enchilada sauce and about a half cup of shredded cheese. (Sargento is awesome about their shredded cheese being gluten-free!)

After it was in the oven for about ten minutes, the hubs (aka Aubrey) topped his portion with pico de gallo, sour cream, and a bit more cilantro.

Hereís the full recipe and its vagueness (which is SO not a word).

Pumpkin Enchiladas

ĺ of an onion (small, large, who knows?)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 can enchilada sauce, 10 oz (or homemade when you give up trying to find a gluten-free version)
1 can pure pumpkin (WAY less pumpkin is needed, seriouslyÖ)
1 can kidney beans
Large bunch of cilantro, chopped (someone please explain this measurement to me)
1.5 tbsp cumin (seemed like a lot, did nothing to season the massive amount of pumpkin)
1 tsp chili powder
Ĺ cup cheese, shredded
4 large corn tortillas

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Saute onion and garlic until soft.

Add in enchilada sauce, add beans. Add pumpkin. Add cilantro, cumin, and chili powder. (Lots of adding apparently!)

Spread a light layer of sauce on the bottom of pan.

Heat up tortillas to soften and fill with an even amount of sauce and bean mixture.

Roll tortillas and place in the pan with the folded edges facing down. Top with remaining sauce and sprinkle with cheese.

Bake until cheese melts. (About 10 minutes).

Serve with dollops of sour cream and/or avocado slices if desired.

Well there you go! Play around with it and make it your own. I am certainly going to have to if I want to make it again.

My dinner of rice, veggies and beans was just as good, even if a bit repetitive!

How's the weather where you are?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DJ4HEALTH 11/30/2010 7:38PM

    Wow looks good but I will have to find something else for the wraps. Will try it when we get home from his bone marrow transplant.

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BANKER-CHUCK 11/24/2010 2:24AM

    Mexican food is my favorite food. Sound different and good.

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PAGGYJ 11/23/2010 8:14PM

    Hi Amber,I cant beleive the weather.It is like warmer here but rain today.Summer fall weather.BUT we had some snow some time back but didnt stay.Interesting your cooking glution free.Will catch up with u over holidays.You door froze up and saw your buddy snowed in.Happy Thanksgiving..peggy emoticon

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MT-MOONCHASER 11/23/2010 2:20PM

    It's 8F and snowing here in NE Montana. So far, not much wind...

This weather sure screwed up my Thanksgiving travel plans. I'm just going to stay home and enjoy the day with my cats.

Have a good Thanksgiving.


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Recipe and Picture Time: Black Bean Casserole

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

I have posted about my black bean casserole before, but lately it seems to be all I want to eat! I am beyond obsessed and I am seriously considering seeking professional help.


Okay, not really. But it is so flavorful and was surprisingly easy to make gluten-free. All I had to do was swap the flour tortillas for corn ones. I have never been a fan of corn tortillas, but with all of the other flavors I canít even tell the difference!

MmmÖI think I know what Iím having for dinner again tonight. With a big salad on the side!

Since I'm so in love, I should probably share the recipe with you again. (Or for the first time if you haven't read my blog before!) Itís actually really easy to make.

Black Bean Casserole

2 cups chopped onion
1.5 cups chopped bell peppers (I like green or yellow in this since you already get the red color from the tomatoes and salsa)
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes (undrained)
ĺ cup salsa
2 tsp ground cumin
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 15-oz cans black beans (thoroughly drained and rinsed)
4 tortillas (I used Mission White Corn tortillas)
8 oz reduced-fat shredded cheese (I used Sargento which is yummy and gluten-free and doesnít hurt my stomach!)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a large skillet combine onion, bell peppers, undrained tomatoes, salsa, cumin and garlic. Bring it to boiling. Then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

When your house is starting to smell amazing (or when the 10 minutes are up) stir in the black beans.

Spread 1/3 of the bean mixture over the bottom of a 9x13 pan.

Top with two of the tortillas, overlapping as necessary and then half of the cheese.

Add another 1/3 of the bean mixture, top with remaining two tortillas, and then the final 1/3 of the bean mixture. (We'll do something with that other half of the cheese, I promise! No snacking on it! Ok, a little if you really want.)

Bake, uncovered, in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until heated through.

Sprinkle with remaining half of the cheese (or whatever is left of it you impatient snacker! lol) and bake for five minutes, or until cheese is melted.

If desired, top individual servings with chopped tomato, shredded lettuce, green onions, olives or sour cream.

It really reminds me of pizza. And gluten-free pizza is fine by me! In fact I like to eat it cold, just like I used to eat leftover takeout pizza.

Without toppings youíre looking at 320 calories, 46g carbs, 10g fat, 20g protein, 650g sodium, 780g potassium and almost 100% of your daily vitamin C!

Amber = obsessed!

Someone, please remind me there is other food in the world!

And if you happen to have any casserole ideas for me please share! (Especially if they are gluten-free!)


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    I am adding this recipe to my rotation. It looks amazing and should be something that I can get anyone in my family to eat.

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BBDAZY18 11/18/2010 10:33AM

    Looks Yummy for sure! Going to have to try it... I have had a can of black beans in the pantry for a while so I will have to get rid of it! :)

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RACHELKYLE 11/18/2010 10:08AM

    I echo everyone's comments that looks delicious :)

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BEKAHP 11/17/2010 6:39PM

    That sounds absolutely amazing! Will have to try very soon. Thanks for sharing.

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MDTWEETY 11/17/2010 4:11PM

    Yummy! Thank you for sharing! I will put it in my rotation next week. :) :)

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BANKER-CHUCK 11/17/2010 4:08PM

    I am sitting here starving to death now. Really looks good. Now I have to get up and go eat something since I have only consumed 15 cal. today.

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SLUGGOISMYDOG 11/17/2010 2:29PM

    Sounds wonderful! I have rice cheese that would do very a good job on that. I think its a keeper. Thanks! emoticon

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BCARSON11 11/17/2010 1:10PM

    Sounds and looks yummy! Thanks for sharing! I look forward to trying it!

Comment edited on: 11/17/2010 1:13:18 PM

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Recipe + Picture Time: Cinnamon Cake

Friday, November 12, 2010

Hello! I know I havenít been posting as much now that I am trying to figure out FUN, tasty recipes that take into account my food preferences and now intolerances! But I have been cooking and baking and finally have a recipe I really want to share with you.

I wish I remembered where I found it, but I bet I was inspired by this recipe

It is gluten-free, vegetarian and can be made vegan. Although if you are on a low-fat diet, I would run the other way! Itís made with healthy fats, but I know some people get a little nervous around fat.

Okay, not the prettiest cake youíve ever seen, but itís quite tasty so stick with me here!

I wanted to follow the recipe exactly since I am soooo new to gluten-free baking. I really want to try some new things the next time I make it though.

First, letís get all of our ingredients out. Youíll need:


1 apple (peeled, cored, chopped)
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 cup almond butter
ľ cup honey
2 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla
2 tablespoons cinnamon (yes, two full tablespoons!)
Ĺ tsp salt


The recipe called for almond butter, but I had peanut butter so I used that instead. I definitely want to try it next time with almond butter.

Iím thinking of replacing the honey with applesauce since I like the consistency of baked goods made with applesauce. Or even an overripe banana.

To lower the calories you can replace the two eggs with four egg whites.

To make it vegan replace eggs with flax eggs (and definitely replace the honey.)

I ALWAYS leave out salt because I donít like it, but I added it this time because Iím not really sure what its purpose is and I didnít want the cake to be messed up just because of that. Not sure whether to keep adding it or not!

Okay, now that you have a mess of ingredients depending on your own preferences and dietary needs, letís make a mess!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a food processor (or blender or whatever you like to use) combine the apple, orange juice and your favorite nut butter.

Pulse until blended.

Then add in the honey (or applesauce or overripe banana), eggs (or flax eggs), vanilla, cinnamon and salt (if desired). Pulse until combined and blend until velvety smooth.

Resist urge to dive face in to lick the bowl clean.

Pour batter into a 9-inch pie plate sprayed with nonstick spray.

Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Let cool before slicing (if you are patient and can do things like that).

When I had it fresh from the oven I thought it needed some sort of frosting or whipped topping. I hadnít thought ahead so I ate it without. The next day my husband and I had some that was left over and it was perfect! Nothing extra needed. Iíll definitely try to remember to make it a day in advance! Then again, thereís that whole patience thing againÖ.Weíll see!

This is the first recipe I am entering into SparkRecipes.com I have never done that before, so if you want to know the full nutritional breakdown of this recipe click this link: recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detai

Thatís all I have for you today. Now Iím going to go finish my snack, because you know what is ALWAYS gluten free?

Honeycrisp Apple = Love!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BBDAZY18 11/18/2010 10:35AM

    another great one. Thanks for sharing.

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CHUBBYSELF 11/16/2010 8:35AM

    that sounds so yummy!!

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DNJEN471 11/15/2010 2:02PM

    Thank you! So going to try this!

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MDTWEETY 11/15/2010 1:18PM

    Thanks for sharing this recipe. Looks like a keeper. i am so glad that you are having fun trying new and tasty recipes! =)

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KNMMOMMY 11/14/2010 11:45PM

    That looks like a holiday yummy! Thanks for sharing this recipe!

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CAMELA_55 11/13/2010 3:51PM

    Looks yummy! Thanks for sharing!

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AUBREYINGMAN 11/13/2010 12:57AM

    The first bite after it came out of the oven I thought " it needs whip topping" but it was still really good.

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BANKER-CHUCK 11/12/2010 11:27PM

    Looks really good but I am one who need to watch my balance of nutrients. I cannot have any type of baked goods around me at home since it is to much temptation and tears at my willpower. I would eat to much and it leads to other baked foods. I do the same thing with cornbread and it is packed with calories. I love cornbread but no matter how I try to make it with less calories, it is to high.
Hope you enjoyed your creation.

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NAMSMOMMY 11/12/2010 9:14PM

    That looks delish! =)

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SLUGGOISMYDOG 11/12/2010 8:50PM

    Sounds wonderful! I will definitley make it vegan. Sounds easy. Thanks for sharing it. emoticon

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PAGGYJ 11/12/2010 6:09PM

    Hi Amber..This looks good.Hope u are great! peggy

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