7 Gluten-Free Pantry Essentials

Everyday Food
Suffering from a gluten intolerance turns lovable foods like pancakes, muffins, and cakes into THE ENEMY. Battle against cravings for baked goods with a well stocked pantry of gluten-free essentials.

Related: Martha Stewart's Best Comfort Food Recipes

1. Unsweetened Coconut Milk
Use it in place of whole milk and heavy cream. The coconut flavor is more subtle than one might expect and the texture is rich and silky. Use it in risottos, muffins, pasta sauces, and soups. Or add a squeeze of lemon juice and you've got a sub-in for buttermilk.

2. Buckwheat Flour
Gluten is a protein, so you want to seek out alternative good-quality protein flours, such as buckwheat, when going gluten-free. Its earthy flavor will mellow desserts made with tart fruits, and it tastes great with chocolate. Use buckwheat flour in combination with a milder-tasting flour, such as brown rice.

3. Chia Seeds
Sprinkle these South American superseeds (they have more omega-3s than flaxseeds and 5 grams of fiber in every tablespoon) on breads, salads, and oatmeal. Mixed with water, they become gelatinous, with a structure that mimics the elasticity of gluten -- perfect, for pancakes and yeast breads that need a little more structural support.

4. Tapioca Starch
Gluten-free baked goods need starch for structure. And while corn, potato, arrowroot, and tapioca starches will all work in most recipes, some prefers tapioca, which is ground from cassava root, because it produces a less dense texture.

5. Millet Flour
Many of us think of millet as the main ingredient in birdseed, but in places like Asia and Africa, it's a mainstay grain. We love the bright sweetness the flour brings to muffins and cakes. For the best results, blend it with a superfine flour such as brown rice or almond.

6. Hazelnut Flour
For quick breads, including muffins, scones, and cookies, spike a whole-grain flour with a nut one. The nut flour adds healthy fats and protein, and the overall flavor is more complex. For an assertive nuttiness, try hazelnut flour, but balance with a milder nut flower, such as almond.

7. Almond Flour
Use this delicately flavored, versatile flour in pancakes, waffles, and cakes. She makes her own by grinding blanched almonds very fine in a food processor. (The coarser the grind, the more crumbly the end product will be).

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