I got very frustrated with supposed ‘gluten free’ recipe books. As someone who cooks from scratch, making gluten free meals wasn’t really a problem, but I wanted some ideas for amending and adapting other recipes, rather than just being given recipes which were already gluten free (doh!) or instructed to “use store bought gluten free baking mix”  here. Here is a collection of amended recipes, or ones which were already gluten free and which work really well.  I have made each of these recipes myself, normally more than once, so I know that they work. I’ll put all the recipes on this page, but I’ll also post them so that I can make categories – at the moment, I have recipes – baking and recipes – savoury but may add to that as I go along!

Cauliflower and Cumin Fritters

These are a flavour burst in every bite. Best eaten hot and right out of the pan, but that’s not always practical so you can keep them hot in the oven as well until you’re ready to serve them. These are really nice for a high vegetable dinner served with salad and are a huge favourite of ours. It looks like a lot of ingredients but most of them are standard pantry items.


  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp chilli paste, or 1 small chilli de-seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 tsp crushed garlic
  • 2 tsp crushed ginger
  • 1 cauliflower head, cut into florets
  • 1.5 cups gluten free flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp gluten free baking powder
  • 1 tsp sea salt flakes
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup coriander leaves, roughly chopped
  • vegetable oil for frying
  • mango chutney and plain yoghurt to serve


Cook cauliflower in a saucepan of boiling water until tender. Drain water and roughly mash. Set aside and allow to cool completely.

Cook cumin seeds in a little oil in a frypan for a minute until they start to pop. Add onion and cook for a few minutes. Add chilli, garlic and ginger and cook for a little longer. Set aside to cool.

Combine flour, baking soda and powder, salt, turmeric and ground coriander. Whisk eggs in a jug with 1/2 cup water and add to the flour mixture. Whisk until smooth. Add the onion mixture, mashed cauli and coriander leaves and mix well.

Add oil to frypan and heat over medium heat. The original recipe calls for enough oil to deep fry, which is filling the frypan about half full of oil. I use a lot less than this, and you can even just use oven spray if you want to. Cook 2 tbsp mixture in batches of 3 or 4 for a few minutes each side.

Polenta Pan Bread

This is a very light dish which has a lovely flavour  and is really useful for lunches or for dinner accompaniments.  I often serve this with a salad and some meat, or just toss in some roasted veges and eat it for dinner.

  • 1 cup fine ground cornmeal
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup yoghurt – plain is best, but fruit will work fine
  • 1/2 milk
  • 1 tsp finely chopped rosemary
  • Additional 1/2 cup milk

Heat a cast iron frypan in an oven at 180 deg C.

Combine cornmeal, baking soda and salt in a bowl. In a second bowl, mix egg, rosemary, yoghurt and milk.

Combine all ingredients and only mix until just blended.

Pour 2 tsp oil into the hot frypan and swirl around. Pour the batter into the frypan a few spoonfuls at a time. Pour over the additional milk (or cream if you’re feeling really decadent!).

Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes or until golden.


Chop some mushrooms, capisicum, courgette, egg plant and roast in the pan while it is heating up. Pour the batter over it for a healthy, light dinner or lunch.

Add 1 tbsp sugar, dried fruit, cinnamon and 1tsp vanilla to the mix. Do not put rosemary in. Use fruit yoghurt if possible. Makes a sweet fruity breakfast or brunch snack which can be served with butter, or maple syrup and whipped cream.

Traditional Polenta

This is a great dish to make as a base for a rich roasted vegetable sauce served with steak. Nice for lunch as well, or piled up in a roasted vege stack.

Bring 2 litres of water or chicken stock* to the boil in a large, preferably heavy based pan. Add 500g polenta in a constant stream with one hand, whisking vigorously until the mixture starts to boil. I like to use a mix of fine ground cornmeal and slightly coarser ground, as this makes for a nice texture.

Use a wooden spoon, and stir regularly until the mixture starts clumping and comes away from the sides of the pot. Stir in 1 cup grated cheese, and then tip the whole mix into a swiss roll type tin, to a depth of about an inch thick. Allow to set and cool.

Once cool, cut into pieces and put onto a greased oven tray. Grill or bake in the oven until it goes golden and slips away from the tray.

Note: polenta is very sticky and often leaves a fine coating on the pan. Make sure you rinse the pan and utensils out as soon as possible after cooking.

Muffins – any kind!

This is a really tolerant muffin recipe. It doubles well, and making a double batch and freezing half works well. These muffins are good eaten the same day but don’t need to be served warm.

  • 2 cups gluten free flour
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp vanilla essence
  • 1 tsp cinnamon or mixed spice
  • 1 cup chopped fruit – can be canned peaches, berries, pears etc
  • 1 egg
  • 1 and 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/4 cup oil

Combine all ingredients. Mix until combined, but no further. Overmixing makes muffins quite tough. Pour into tins and bake 10-15 minutes at 180 deg C. Fan bake works best if you have it.

Some good combos are pear or peach and add in 1/4 cup of crystallised ginger. Add in 3tbsp cocoa and 1/2 cup chocolate chips for a double chocolate blast.

Chocolate Cake (Microwave)

This is a great chocolate cake recipe. Very quick to make and adapts quite well to changes. The ground almonds can be omitted. They give the cake a bit more texture and take away some of the sweetness.

  • 150g butter, chopped
  • 3/4 cup castor sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tbsp jam (strawberry, raspberry, plum best)
  • 1 and 1/2 cups gluten free flour
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup cocoa
  • 1 rounded tsp baking soda
  • 100g ground almonds
  • 2 eggs
  • 200g dark chocolate
  • 125 mls cream

Melt sugars, water, jam and butter in a covered microwave jug in microwave on high for 3 minutes. Allow to cool slightly.

Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and cocoa into a large bowl. Stir through the ground almonds. Make a well in the centre and mix in the eggs. Pour in butter mixture and stir until just combined. Do not overbeat.

Pour into a greased microwave cake tin (one of those ones with a sticky up bit in the middle). Elevate tin on plate or rack and microwave on high for 10 minutes. Stand for 5 minutes, then turn out. Allow cake to cool completely (in fridge is OK).

To make chocolate ganache, combine the cream and the chocolate and microwave uncovered on high for 1 and 1/2 minutes. Mix well until smooth and refrigerate until thickened. Cut cake in half and sandwich the layers together with ganache. Top with ganache, garnish with hazelnuts or almonds and serve with whipped cream or ice cream.


For dairy free, replace butter with oil and make traditional icing sugar icing with cocoa.

Add raspberries or strawberries into the centre layer with whipped cream.

Chocolate Almond Cake

This recipe was given to me by a colleague whose wife liked it and was originally named “100 year old Swedish Chocolate Almond Cake”. We were a bit dubious about eating 100-year old cake 🙂 My test subjects (the four children aged between 10 and 14, and eight visiting adults) differed wildly on what they thought! The children didn’t like it very much and felt the almond flavour was quite strong against the chocolate and it wasn’t very sweet. These were all positives as far as the adults were concerned and they envisaged it served with icec cream as a warm dessert. It’s almost souffle-like in its lightness, but has quite an intense flavour. Very quick and easy to make – you could whip it up for surprise guests and impress them terrifically! Not so good for those of us who are intolerant to whole eggs though.


  • 6 eggs
  • 125g butter
  • 120g dark chocolate (or the whole king-size bar less 2 squares – the cook eats those)
  • 200g ground almonds
  • 120g castor sugar (about half a cup)
  • 1-2 tbsp cocoa powder


Melt butter and chocolate together, then cool slightly. I do this in a microwave on half power for 1 minute, then stir, then half power again for another minute. You could also melt them together in a bowl over hot water.

Beat eggs and sugar together until mixed and fluffy. You shouldn’t be able to see any of the sugar texture, and the eggs should have turned a slightly creamy colour. A whisk works best.

Mix the cocoa and ground almonds and add half of them to the egg mix. Mix lightly, then pour in all of the butter and chocolate. Mix gently but well, then add the remainder of the dry ingredients.

Bake in a lined sponge roll tin at 180 degrees Celsius for 20-30 minutes until a skewer comes out clean.

Allow to cool for a few minutes in the baking dish, then turn out onto a wire rack. Dust with icing sugar and serve.

Plum, white chocolate and cream cheese mousse flan

With thanks to my friend Jeannie for this one! I have a very similar recipe which is a chocolate cream cheese mousse and I may post it later, but here’s a slightly healthier variant, and can be made gluten free or not as you choose – just change out the biscuits. The gingernuts work really well with the cream cheese. Yum, yum, yum, yum!


  • 250g tub of cream cheese (I use lite and it works fine)
  • 120g white chocolate (melted)
  • 1 x 820g can black doris plums
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 packet gluten free gingernuts
  • grated rind of one lemon
  • 25g butter, melted


Drain the can of plums, reserving 1/2 cup liquid. Remove the stones from the plums, and set aside 6 halves for decoration. Mash the rest of the plums lightly.

Allow the cream cheese to soften out of the fridge.  Whisk together the cream cheese and plums, and whisk through the melted chocolate. Whip the cream and fold this in. Cover and place in the fridge to set for 2-3 hours.

Bash the biscuits until they are crumbs. Mix in rind of the lemon and then pour in butter. Mix thoroughly and then press into a flan tin. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours.

Place the mousse mix into the base, and then refrigerate again until ready to eat. To serve, place the half plums on the top, add a little whipped cream and enjoy!

Variations are that you could make mini-flans (if you have time!) or serve the dessert in parfait glasses with the crumb mix at the bottom, and a dollop of cream, half a plum and a mint leaf on the top.

Salmon and Lemon risotto

OK,OK, this is a recipe which is naturally gluten free. You got me! But it is a staple in our house, and unlike traditional risotto recipes, you put all the liquid in at once. I do make the other kind of risotto, but am becoming a convert to this type as well and the flavours are really yum! This is chosen as a birthday meal by 4 of our 6 kids!


  • Grated rind of one lemon
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 600g boneless fresh salmon, cut into 2cm cubes
  • 4 cups fish or chicken stock*
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 leek, halved lengthways, washed and thinly sliced
  • 2 cups arborio rice
  • 1/2 cup white wine

Combine lemon rind, salt, pepper and salmon in a bowl and toss until well combined.

Put stock in a saucepan over high heat and bring to the boil. Reduce to low heat once boiling.

Heat oil in a medium heavy-based saucepan. I’ve used a heavy cast iron pan for this, but what I prefer to use is a wok shaped dish with a lid. Add onion and leek and cook until softened (about 4-5 minutes). Add rice and stir until combined.

Add wine and stir until evaporated (it’s important that you do this or the risotto will taste very strongly alcoholic!). Add all the hot stock at once.  Bring to the boil and then return to simmer. I put a lid on it, stir occasionally and leave it for about 18 minutes. The rice should be sloppy. Add the salmon and make sure it’s covered with rice. Leave for a couple of minutes without stirring until salmon is just cooked through.

Remove from heat and leave to stand for another couple of minutes. If the risotto looks a bit dry, add additional hot water or hot stock.

To increase the vege content of this, I often add spinach leaves and chopped mushrooms at the same time as the salmon.


One of the kids had a friend sleepover at ours last night, and that’a always a great excuse for waffles! This is a recipe adapted from a Jo Seagar recipe (Jo Seagar’s Country Cookbook). They’re light and fluffy, the mixture doubles well and my favourite is with maple syrup, bacon and whipped cream.


  • 2 cups gluten-free flour
  • 2 tbsp castor sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 3 eggs, separated
  • 1 and 3/4 cups milk
  • 100g butter, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla


Mix flour, sugar, baking soda and powder and cinnamon in a bowl. Mix in egg yolks, vanilla and milk and once those are thoroughly mixed, stir through melted butter. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form, then fold carefully into the batter.

Brush a heated waffle iron with melted butter. Spoon in 1/3 cup of batter and cook until the waffles are crisp and golden brown. Serve warm.

*Stock – a quick note! Most store bought stock liquid or cubes/ powder contains wheat. I make my own by using the remains of a roast chicken, put it into a big pan and cover with water. I add a couple of bay leaves, some peppercorns, an onion chopped into big bits, maybe a carrot and a handful of fresh herbs (oregano, thyme, coriander – whatever I have available) and bring it to the boil. Reduce to a simmer and simmer for 2-3 hours. Strain the liquid out into an old ice cream container or something of the sort and freeze until you need it. Because I’ve started making risotto a LOT, I’ve started freezing my stock in 1 litre batches.

Leek and potato soup

This is a favourite of our family, and normally my husband makes it. I have prised the recipe out of him however, and here it is below!


  • 1 bacon hock
  • 1 onion
  • 6 peppercorns
  • 3 tsp crushed garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • A handful of herbs
  • 6 large potatoes, peeled
  • 6 leeks, washed and with the outer leaves removed, sliced in rounds
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 rashers of additional bacon


Combine bacon hock, onion, peppercorns, garlic and herbs into a stock pan. Cover with water and simmer for 2-3 hours. Strain to remove all the bits and allow the bacon hock to cool enough to remove the meat from the bone.

Simmer the leeks and some additional garlic in some butter until tender. Pour stock back into pan and add potatoes. Cook until potatoes are soft.

Blend, mash or process the potato and leek broth until smooth and return to the heat. Add in the bacon hock meat. Season to taste (I find it often needs a little pepper, but the bacon is normally salty enough).

Cook the extra rashers of bacon, chop into small bits and garnish the soup with these and a bit of parsley if you have it to hand.

Pea and Ham Soup in the crockpot

I was a bit dubious about this at first, but it makes a fabulous soup which is really easy and naturally gluten-free.  This was a huge hit with the 5-year old brigade, because “it tastes like the daycare soup”. I think this is a compliment to the daycare cook! Very filling and nice and traditional.


  • 1 bacon hock
  • 500g green split peas
  • 2 onions
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 2 potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • pepper to taste
  • 8 cups water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cloves or 2 tsp crushed garlic


Rinse and drain the split peas.

Put the split peas in the crockpot first, then add all other ingredients. Cook on low for about 9 hours (overnight or during the day).

Remove the bacon hock, cool and strip the meat from the bone.

Mash the remaining ingredients. This can take a while and you think the soup is going to be too thin, but it does thicken up.

Add the bacon hock meat and allow to warm through.

Serve with a little extra cooked bacon and either scones or fresh bread (gluten-free of course!)

Mexican Meatball Soup (Albondigas)

This recipe was taught to me 20 years ago, is a huge favourite with my kids and with its lovely hearty flavours makes a great addition to the winter range of soups. The best thing about is because it has rice in it, you don’t need to serve a carb. It is absolutely no good for vegetarians!

For the broth:

  • 6 litres chicken stock
  • 100mls tomato puree
  • 1/2 capsicum, finely chopped
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • a little chilli
  • 2 cloves or tsp crushed garlic
  • 1 tsp ground coriander

In a large saucepan (heavy based if you have it) fry the onion and garlic in a little oil. Once softened, add the capsicum and fry for a little longer. Add the tomato paste, chilli and coriander and stir for a minute to two to allow the flavours to mingle. Add the chicken stock and bring to a rolling boil

For the meatballs:

  • 500g minced beef
  • 500g minced pork
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 capsicum, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves or tsp crushed garlic
  • 100ml tomato puree or salsa
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp finely chopped mint
  • 1 cup uncooked rice

Combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly. Make into small balls and pile on to a plate. Moisten hands with cold water frequently to stop the mixture sticking and to help the meatballs bind.

Once the meatballs are complete, begin putting them into the saucepan. Keep the broth at a rolling boil as much as possible by adding a few meatballs at a time and then pausing. It is useful to ensure that all the meatballs are under the broth.

Allow to cook covered for about 20 minutes. You can tell they are cooked when the rice sticks out of the side of the balls.

Chop some fresh coriander and sprinkle through just before serving.

This also makes a very nice meatloaf. If you’re doing this, omit the rice and you may want to add some coriander and chilli to the meatball mix.

Eggplant Stacks

I made these for a lunch where we had a couple of vegetarians and they were a huge hit. They’re called stacks, but I actually did them layered in a dish to speed things up!! Really nice flavours and very easy. These aren’t too cheap in winter, but this would be a great dish in summer when eggplant is cheap.


  • 2 large eggplants
  • 1/2 c gluten-free flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 50ml milk
  • 2 c gluten-free breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 c cheese – mozzarella or parmesan

For the passata

  • 1 can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp fresh oregano
  • 1 tsp rosemary
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp garlic
  • 1/2 c wine


Combine all ingredients for the passata and put onto a steady simmer. This needs to simmer for at least 30 minutes and reduce a little. If you want a smooth paste, then mash or puree the reduced mixture.

Slice the eggplant into 1cm rounds. Lay out on a tray and sprinkle with salt. Leave for about 10 minutes until the liquid is seeping out. Rinse off the salt and dry with paper towels.

Heat oven to 180 degrees C.

Set up 3 bowls, one with flour, salt and pepper; one with the eggs and milk lightly beaten together and the third with the breadcrumbs. Dust each eggplant slice with flour, then dip in the egg and milk mixture and coat with breadcrumbs. Spray a couple of oven trays with baking spray and lay the eggplant out in a single layer on the sheets. Spray the top of the eggplant with the baking spray and place the trays in the oven to cook until browned.

Once the eggplant is golden brown, remove from the oven. Make stacks of two eggplant slices sandwiched with the passata and cheese in the middle and on the top. Alternately, do layers in a lasagna type dish, finishing with a layer of passata and cheese.

Put back in the oven and bake for 5-10 minutes until cheese is melted.

Moroccan Beef

Makes a lovely flavoured casserole, reheats brilliantly and we often freeze half for another night. I think you could make it in a crockpot, although I haven’t done this. It looks like a lot of ingredients, but it is very quick to make.


  • 1 large eggplant or if they are out of season, 3 courgettes or a swede or combo of all of these
  • 1 tbsp each of coriander and cumin seeds (you can use ground, but the whole spices make for a more intense flavour)
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 tbsp ground paprika
  • 1 tsp chilli powder or chillies
  • 1 kg beef, diced
  • Oil
  • 2 cloves garlic or 2 tsp crushed garlic
  • 2 tsp crushed or grated ginger
  • 2 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tsp white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup red or white wine (optional)
  • 2 x 400g tins of chick peas
  • 1 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped


  • Cut the eggplant, courgettes or swede into large chunks and fry in the oil, with the garlic, until golden brown.
  • Place the whole spices into a grinder or mortar and pestle and grind until a powder. Add the other spices and mix well.
  • Put the diced beef into a plastic bag which has no holes in it! Add the ground spices and ensure the beef is thoroughly coated.
  • Place beef in the pan with the ginger and cook until browned.
  • Stir in vinegar and wine, then add in tomatoes. Stir until combined, then add the chickpeas.
  • Cover and simmer for 30 minutes to two hours.  Stir through fresh coriander and serve on brown rice or couscous (only if you’re ok with gluten!).

This recipe also works very well with chicken, or you can use the spice flavourings as a rub for a piece of meat. I also often add green beans at the end of the cooking time to add a few more vegetables!

Roasted Pumpkin and Bacon Soup

To make this you will need a large pot and a blender 🙂

For the stock:


  • 1 bacon hock
  • 1 onion peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 handful of herbs – I tend to use oregano, thyme, rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 10 peppercorns
  • 2 tsp crushed garlic or a couple of cloves of garlic
  • water to cover the bacon hock


Combine all in the large pot and allow to simmer for 2-3 hours. Remove the hock from the stock and take all the meat off.  Keep the meat to add back into the soup later. Strain the stock through a sieve.

For the vegetables:


  • 1 pumpkin, peeled and chopped
  • 2-3 carrots, peeled and sliced lengthways
  • 2-3 parsnips, peeling and sliced lengthways
  • 2 onions, peeled and halved


Place all vegetables on oven trays and roast until slightly browned. In batches together with some of the stock, blend until smooth.

Put back in saucepan and add a couple of teaspoons of caraway or cumin seeds, and the meat from the hock. Reheat until warm. Fry a little bacon and use this to garnish the soup with a little sour cream.

This is really nice served with fresh bread from the breadmaker. I often make the stock and roast the veges the night before, put a loaf of bread into the breadmaker in the morning before we go to school and work, timed to be ready later in the day. I then assemble the soup at dinner time et voila!


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