Those of you who are new to gluten-free cooking probably have had to pick your jaw up off the floor a time or two when you saw how much money is going into every cookie, or slice of bread. I know I did.
Eventually, the incredulous jaw dropping turns into a weary sigh as you add over-priced items to your cart. But what other option is there?
A few weeks ago I stated that grinding your own grain was one of the biggest - if not the biggest - way to save money on gluten-free food.
Here are two more ways to drastically reduce that cost:
- Use guar gum. I know, I know, xanthan gum almost every recipe calls for xanthan gum, but I get the same results with both fo them, and guar gum is about one third the price of xanthan. You can do a straight 1:1 swap. You'll never know the difference. Well… your pocket book will.
I also harp on leaving the gum out of your flour mix entirely. Why add your most expensive ingredient (gum) if you don't have to? So many recipes don't really need gum. I accidentally left the gum out of a batch of biscuits a few days ago and couldn't tell the difference (I do not recommend trying that with cut-out biscuits!). Admittedly though, when I make pancakes or waffles, I tend to make a batch and a half of the recipe, and use the amount of eggs for a double recipe to make up the difference.
- Don't get fancy. Rice and cornstarch are cheap, so use them. I do keep some millet or sorghum on hand for the occasional splurge, but for the most part, we use a flour mix composed entirely of rice and cornstarch.
I know it's tempting to get caught up in wanting variety either for health reasons, or just for the fun of it - and if you've got a generous budget, then by all means go for it! But it's not really necessary, and your pocket book will thank you.
What are your tips for cutting the cost of gluten-free food? I'd love it if you'd leave a comment letting me know!