The Gluten-Free Sourdough Bread Guide to help you make the best gluten-free and vegan sourdough of your life!!
A few equipment notes…
- A kitchen scale is a must-have! I don’t share volume measurements for the lack of accuracy.
- I use a banneton basket for all my bread proofing. You can also use a bowl and a clean towel.
- A stand mixer is not necessary, but helpful in mixing together your dough.
See underneath the recipe card for links to all of my favorite sourdough-making equipment!
4/28/2021 Note: I adjusted the recipe to add 15g more brown rice flour, which should help with gumminess issues some bakers have experienced!
- 150g active gluten-free sourdough starter, it should be at peak rise and super bubbly, see Notes
- 100g filtered water
- 80g superfine brown rice flour
- 20g psyllium husk, the whole husks, not psyllium husk powder
- 20g maple syrup or honey
- 300g filtered water (use 290g if you’re having issues with gumminess)
- 8 to 15g olive oil, optional, helps soften the crust slightly, I recommend the higher amount of flour if you use this
Flour Mix (see Notes for options)
To make the preferment
- In a bowl, mix together 150g active starter, water, and brown rice flour. Mix until smooth, and then cover and let rest for anywhere between 4 and 18 hours. The longer it ferments, the more sour your loaf will be. I’ve had success all across the time spectrum!
To make the dough
- Whisk together the psyllium husk, sweetener, and water. Whisk until combined and let gel while preparing the flour mixture.
- In a large bowl or stand mixer, combine all of the flours + starches, plus salt. This is also where you’d adding any herbs and other dry seasonings if you want to flavor your dough.
- Whisk the psyllium gel mixture into the preferment, along with the olive oil if using, and any other wet seasonings (like garlic, soaked nuts or seeds, etc.).
- Add the wet ingredients to the flour mixture. Use a spoon and then your hands to bring the dough together, or use your dough hook to mix all of the ingredients until a smooth dough forms. It will take a few minutes in a stand mixer. If you’re using your hands, you will likely want to knead the dough together for a few minutes to make sure all the flour is hydrated and the dough is smooth.
- Once your dough is soft and smooth, turn it out onto a clean, smooth work surface. Lightly flour it if your dough seems sticky – mine usually doesn’t need any flour. Knead into a smooth ball, and use your hands to shape the dough into a round (or whatever shape you’re making).
- Dust your banneton or tea towel-lined bowl generously with brown rice flour. You can place the dough directly into the banneton if you want the horizontal lines you see on my round loaves, or you can use the liner for a smoother look.
- Use a dough scraper or your hands to transfer the dough into your banneton, or a bowl lined with a clean tea towel. Put the smooth side facing down, so the “seams” of the loaf are facing up. Since we’ll flip the loaf before baking, the seams will be on the bottom after baking.
- Cover, and let the dough proof for about three to four hours at room temperature, or overnight in the refrigerator. (While this timing works pretty consistently for me here in San Diego, other bakers have mentioned that sometimes their bread can take up to 6 to 8 hours to rise well. Remember to look for the soft, puffy texture instead of relying strongly on the exact timing. Conditions of weather, your starter, ingredients, etc. can vary this timing pretty widely!)
When you’re ready to bake
- An hour before your dough is fully proofed, turn on the oven to 425°F. Make sure your Dutch oven is preheating inside of the oven if you’re using one. If you did an overnight proof in the refrigerator, I recommend taking the bread out to finish rising at room temperature for an hour to two while the oven preheats. You want the loaf to feel puffy when it’s going into the oven.
When your oven is preheated and your dough is well proofed, carefully flip the dough onto a sheet of parchment paper. Score the bread as desired, making sure your cut is deep enough, otherwise, you’ll still have cracking where you didn’t cut through.
Remove your hot Dutch oven, carefully, from the oven. Carefully lower your loaf into the Dutch oven, being careful not to drop it in, which will cause gumminess and reduce the loaf’s rise. Replace the lid, and put your bread into the oven for 45 minutes.
After 45 minutes of baking, remove the lid and let it finish baking for 25 to 40 minutes. The exact timing will depend on your oven and how golden brown you want your bread.
- Once the bread is golden brown to your liking, remove it from the oven. Very carefully remove the bread from the Dutch oven and let cool completely at room temperature before slicing into it. This is the hardest part, but worth the wait!
To store your sourdough bread
- It will keep well at room temperature for two or three days. You can store it in a linen bread bag to extend its life. If your loaf gets a bit stale, put it in a 300°F for 10 minutes to refresh the crust. You can also slice and freeze the bread. It toasts from frozen perfectly!
- If you’re in a very warm climate, you may want to use less starter, around 125g, to get a longer rise.
- For the flours, you can absolutely play around with alternative flours than I have listed here, but I’d stick with the total amount of flour to keep the liquid to flour ratio steady. Note that more starches (tapioca, arrowroot & potato) will cause a quick rise and a more “white bread” texture and flavor, whereas adding more whole grains will make for a less fluffy, light loaf. Experiment with subbing in different flours, like quinoa and millet, for the brown rice and sorghum, to see what you like best!
For a loaf shape
- If you’re wanting to bake your sourdough in a loaf pan, follow the same instructions up until you’re placing the dough in the banneton. Instead, shape the dough to a longer oval shape and place the dough seam side down in the metal loaf pan you’ll be baking in. The one I use is 8.5″ x 4.5″.
- Allow the dough to rise in the loaf pan. When ready to bake, bake for an hour. Check on the loaf and if it’s firm enough, remove it from the pan and bake directly on the oven racks for another 20 minutes or so, until golden all around and hollow-sounding when you knock on the sides or bottom.
Keywords: gluten-free, sourdough bread, sourdough, vegan