Learn how to make gluten free focaccia. You will see how easy it is to make your own gluten free bread at home. This recipe is very easy to prepare and you don’t need many ingredients.
Baking your own gluten free focaccia bread has never been so easy. With this recipe you will have your bread ready in a few hours.
The good thing about this recipe is that it doesn’t need much fermenting time, with 1-2 hours of fermentation, you can bake the focaccia.
You can decorate the focaccia with anything you want. You can add black olives instead of green olives and replace the cherry tomatoes with cheese cubes or other vegetables.
TIPS for the best gluten free focaccia
Here are some tips to make your focaccia delicious
- Psyllium husk
To get an elastic dough that won’t break, you’ll need a gluten substitute. Psyllium husks have the binding effect of gluten (without containing gluten). For more information on gluten substitutes, see my post. “Types of gluten substitutes for gluten-free baking”
- Combine a starch with a type of flour.
If you want a fluffy, soft crumb, use at least one starch and one type of flour. In this focaccia bread recipe, I used cornstarch and brown rice flour.
- Extra virgin olive oil
Use a high-quality oil for a tastier and more delicious focaccia.
- Top the bread with cherry tomatoes, black or green olives, and fresh herbs like thyme or rosemary. The topping so much flavour to the bread.
How to make a gluten free focaccia bread
All the ingredients to bake these gluten free focaccia
- Water. Use bottled or filtered water whenever possible. This focaccia recipe has a very high water content. You’ll need quite a bit of water compared to other gluten free bread recipes.
- Extra virgin Olive Oil. In this focaccia recipe, the oil is very important. I don’t recommend you substitute olive oil for coconut oil or butter. Olive oil gives the focaccia its characteristic flavor. You need oil for both the inside of the dough and the outside.
- Apple cider vinegar. A little apple cider vinegar adds acidity to the dough and helps it rise better.
- Toppings of your choice like cherry tomatoes, olives, and fresh rosemary.
- Dry yeast for bread. An essential ingredient to bake bread. Do not substitute this ingredient. Without yeast, the dough will not rise. You could also use fresh yeast, but you’ll need to adjust the grams, 10g or dry yeast it’s not the same as 10g of fresh yeast.
- Salt. For flavor.
- White sugar to activate the yeast. You can also use honey instead of sugar.
Gluten-free flours and binders
- To bake this gluten free focaccia, you’ll need to combine one type of flour with one type of starch. In this case, you’ll need cornstarch and brown rice flour. If you don’t have cornstarch, you can substitute it with tapioca starch. If you don’t have brown rice flour, you can use white rice flour. An easy way to make rice flour is to grind the rice grains in a powerful blender/grinder like a Thermomix or Ninja.
- Psyllium husks in powder. This is an essential ingredient in this gluten-free focaccia bread recipe. Psyllium husks are a fiber that makes the dough more elastic. It is a gluten substitute that will give you a homogeneous, elastic and cohesive dough. When you bake gluten-free bread, it is very important to add a gluten substitute, otherwise, the dough will break and you won’t be able to knead it well. Also, psyllium helps keep the crumb from becoming so sandy.
- Xanthan Gum. This is another ingredient used as a gluten substitute. Like psyllium husks, xanthan gum contributes to a elastic dough that is easy to knead. Xanthan gum works similarly to psyllium husks. If you don’t have xanthan gum, you can substitute it with psyllium husks.
Do not substitute starch for flour. The starch makes for a soft and fluffy crumb.
Add olives, cherry tomatoes and fresh rosemary to the focaccia bread.
Step by step to this gluten free focaccia recipe
1. Activate the yeast
To bake this gluten free focaccia, you first need to make sure the yeast you have is in good condition. To do this, put the water, the 10 g of dry yeast for bread (or baker’s yeast) and the white sugar in a bowl. Mix everything, cover the bowl and let it stand for about 10-15 minutes.
If the yeast is active, after 10-15 minutes, you will see that the bowl is full of bubbles. If it is not full of bubbles and has some volume, the yeast you used is not the right one for this recipe (or it may have expired).
In any bread recipe, the yeast (whether dry or fresh) must be in good condition for the bread to rise well.
2. Add the remaining ingredients
Once you see that the yeast is activated, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. Mix lightly and add the remaining dry ingredients: rice flour, cornstarch, salt, xanthan gum and psyllium husks.
Mix well first with a spatula and then with your hand. Wet your fingers with water and work all the ingredients in well. The dough will be very sticky, but don’t worry, try to combine all the ingredients in and form a ball.
3. Knead it well until it forms a ball and let it rest for 1-2 hours.
When the ball is ready, cover the bowl and let the dough rest for 1-2 hours or until you see that it has doubled in volume.
4. Knead it for 10 minutes until it forms a smooth ball.
After this time, sprinkle some flour on a board and start kneading. Knead for about 10 minutes. You will see that the dough is very sticky and a bit difficult (especially at the beginning). I recommend using a spatula or scoop to help you knead it.
Form a ball and then use a rolling pin to stretch and shape it slightly.
5. Pull the dough into a focaccia mold and let it rest for 30-45 minutes.
Place baking paper on the baking pan or tray on which you will bake the focaccia. Put the dough in the mold and spread it well (as you see in the video).
Spread a little olive oil on the dough and cover it. Let it rest for about 30-45 minutes.
6. Spread the topping on the dough and bake it for 40 minutes at 200ºC*.
After the resting time, wet your fingers with water and poke small holes in the dough (see video).
Cut the cherry tomatoes in half and put them in the holes in the dough. Sprinkle them with olives and a little rosemary or fresh thyme. Also spread a little bit of olive oil.
Bake the focaccia in a preheated oven for 40 minutes at 200 ºC with top and bottom heat. Bake the focaccia in the lower half of the oven until it is golden brown and ready.
If you don’t know whether it is ready, measure the temperature inside the focaccia. The bread must have a temperature of about 95ºC to be ready.
Take the bread out of the oven and let it rest for 1-2 hours. Take it out of the mold and slice it as soon as it is cold. It is VERY IMPORTANT NOT TO CUT THE BREAD BEFORE IT COOLS DOWN. The focaccia must rest after baking, as it will continue to cook for quite a while due to the residual heat of the mold and the bread.
Eat the focaccia the same day you bake it. The next day it can be a little bit dry, if you have some leftovers, you can heat it in the microwave for 30 seconds and it will be good.
Can you freeze the dough or the bread?
Yes, you can freeze the already-baked focaccia bread. Let it cool completely after baking, cut it into slices and freeze it in zip bags. But the texture won’t be the same
Can you omit or substitute the psyllium husks?
Psyllium husks are an important ingredient when making bread with gluten-free flours. In this case, the recipe has a very high hydration %, so the addition of psyllium is essential to absorb all the liquid. You can’t replace or omit this ingredient.
Psyllium husk is a type of fiber that absorbs many times the volume of water in doughs. It makes dough more elastic and cohesive, it doesn’t break. You can work and knead the dough easier.
Can xanthan gum be substituted with psyllium husks?
Yes, you can replace xanthan gum with psyllium husks.
How long do I have to knead the bread dough?
I recommend that you knead it for at least 10 minutes. It is a very sticky dough that can be a little difficult to handle at first.
If you want to know more about gluten substitutes for fluffy gluten-free breads, you can read my post: . “Types of gluten substitutes for gluten-free baking
Can I replace dry yeast with fresh yeast?
Yes, you can replace dry yeast with fresh yeast. Note, however, that the amounts needed are different. That is, the ratio, the number of grams you need of one or the other is different. Usually, you need more fresh yeast than dry yeast. In this recipe, I used 10 grams of dry yeast for bread. If you replace it with fresh yeast, you’ll need to adjust the amount, you’ll probably need 30 g of fresh yeast, but I can’t confirm that exactly because I haven’t tried making this focaccia with fresh yeast.
More info and posts about gluten-free cooking and baking
- Learn the basics to make glutenfree bread
- Hydration and fermentation of a gluten-free bread
- Types of gluten substitutes for gluten-free baking
- Types of Glutenfree flours for cooking and baking
- How to make a glutenfree sourdough starter