Kyra Bussanich, the owner of Kyra's Bake Shop in Lake Oswego, OR, is known for her gooey, fluffy, gluten-free cinnamon rolls made with her own gluten-free flour blend. She is also a three-time winner of Food Network’s Cupcake Wars. Here, Bussanich reveals her three favorite baking tips for perfect gluten-free pastries.
1. Keep eggs and butter at room temperature. “Eggs are often used as a binder that stands in for the missing gluten,” Bussanich says. “And both eggs and butter are easier to work with when used at room temperature—plus room temperature egg whites whip up fluffier than cold egg whites.” If you forget to leave the butter and eggs out ahead of time, Bussanich has two quick fixes: Heat the butter in the microwave for 7-12 seconds and place the eggs in warm water for 30-60 seconds.
2. Don’t overwork xanthan gum. “Corn-based xanthan gum is often used as a stabilizer and thickener in gluten-free baked goods,” Bussanich says. She warns against overworking any dough that contains xanthan gum, which can result in a slimy, gummy texture.
3. Bake hotter and cream longer. “One complaint people sometimes have about gluten-free baked goods is that they’re too dense,” Bussanich says. “To prevent this, set the oven temperature 25 degrees hotter than you would for flour-based baked goods. This will cause the butter in the recipe to release its water as steam, which helps the cake rise quickly.” If you follow this tip, make sure to drop ten minutes from the baking time and check on the cake so that it doesn't overbake. She also recommends creaming the eggs and butter together about ten minutes longer than you would for flour cakes.