Gluten-Free Dinner Rolls

November  3, 2013
3 Ratings
  • Makes 7 rolls
Author Notes

You might think a fluffy dinner roll is impossible without gluten. It's not, of course -- and it's easy. And if someone you love can't eat dairy, you could use melted coconut oil in place of the butter here.

The key here is the psyllium husk. This natural insoluble fiber absorbs water in a way you won't believe the first time you use it. The dough here will be wet, thickly wet, and it will dribble off the whisk. After you have let the dough rise and the flours hydrate for 90 minutes, the dough will be still tacky, but much closer to bread dough. Tuck those dough balls into each other in a pie plate and you have soft, fluffy dinner rolls for Thanksgiving. —glutenfreegirl

What You'll Need
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 200 grams almond flour
  • 100 grams arrowroot flour
  • 100 grams potato starch
  • 50 grams tapioca flour
  • 2 tablespoons psyllium husk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 large egg (optional)
  1. Whisk together the warm water, yeast, and honey in a large bowl. Let the yeasty water sit for a few moments. When you see a bubbly foam on the surface of the water, you know that the yeast is still alive and ready to use.
  2. Whisk together the almond flour, arrowroot flour, potato starch, tapioca flour, psyllium husk, and salt.
  3. Slowly, add the dry ingredients to the yeasty water, whisking continuously.
  4. Pour in the melted butter and stir until everything is evenly combined. The texture of the dough will be a little like paint spackle --  there are a lot of starches in there, after all -- but it should be wet. It should drip off the whisk when you lift it, not quickly, but in slow motion.
  5. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it sit in a warm place in the kitchen for 90 minutes.
  6. When the dough has risen, it should still be a little tacky to the touch. Remember that you don't want to aim for the texture of gluten bread dough. Let it be itself.
  7. Heat the oven to 425° F. Grease a 9-inch pie pan.
  8. If you have a 2-inch ice cream scoop, use it here to scoop up a ball of dough. (If you don't have one, wet your hands and grab a big ball of dough.) Plop it in the middle of the pie pan. Repeat until you have filled the pie pan. Wet your hands and smooth the tops of the dough balls.
  9. Whisk the egg and brush it over the tops of the dough balls. (If you can't tolerate eggs, brush olive oil over the tops of the dough balls instead.)
  10. Bake until the tops of the rolls are browned and firm to the touch, about 15 to 20 minutes. (If you want to take the temperature of the rolls, you're aiming for 200° F.) Remove the rolls from the oven and let them cool in the pie pan.
  11. Eat! Share!

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Kaila Dawson
    Kaila Dawson
  • Jacqie Turner Shaffer
    Jacqie Turner Shaffer
  • Petra Fraties
    Petra Fraties
  • Ouida Lampert
    Ouida Lampert
  • Jasmine Ann Gardiner
    Jasmine Ann Gardiner
Shauna writes about food. Danny cooks it. We grow excited every Saturday morning to go to the farmers' market. This time of year, a Billy Allstot tomato is enough to make us look like goons at the stand, jumping up and down with excitement. We will eat one slice with sea salt, standing over the sink. Another goes to our baby daughter. The rest might go into the smoker to make smoked tomato salsa, or thrown together with watermelon and good olive oil for a watermelon gazpacho, or stacked with smoked salmon and drizzled with horseradish sour cream. Every day is new. I have no idea what we're having for dinner tonight. But I'm sure interested to find out.

59 Reviews

Eileen April 21, 2015
Kaila D. November 28, 2013
I made these today and the dough was very crumbly. I doubled the recipe but carefully weighed everything. The taste is good but the rolls are very dense and heavy. Would doubling the recipe have done that or am I missing something? I know the humidity level in a kitchen can influence baked goods but I didn't think this much.
Kaila D. November 28, 2013
I did use a little bit of sorghum flour because I ran out of almond flour. I weighed them and cup for cup they weighed the same. I usually use them interchangeably.
Kaylene I. November 28, 2013
It is a bit more complex than simply doubling a recipe. You need to determine percentages for each ingredient and then you can scale a recipe up or down and have it turn out perfectly every time. Here is a site to help with this: (This is what we use in a professional kitchen.

I also have a handout from my culinary program that explains weights and determining percentages and helps figure out how to work with multiple flours, which we do working with gluten-free recipes. You can send me an email requesting that handout and I would be happy to send it to you. My instructor was the National Pastry Chef of the Year in 2012, and he is an incredible teacher so this is wonderful information. My email: [email protected]
Food &. November 24, 2013
My dear wife made these this morning and I can't tell you how great it is to have real rolls! THANK YOU!!!

We are planning to make these for Thanksgiving. Any idea if we could make a couple batch in advance and freeze them? Would they hold up?

Also, I can sure see this done as a rustic bread in a dutch oven.
amy November 19, 2013
I am allergic to water, what can I use instead? --allergy troll.
j/k, these look great! Thank you for the recurring reminders to keep using my scale and play around with psyllium husk in yeasted doughs.
Kathy November 19, 2013
just making the recipe now and wondering how to convert the grams into either cups or 1/2 cups for measuring properly?
Dana November 19, 2013
Using a food scale is really best but you can google how to convert the various flours if you can't get a food scale. Just remember that every flour is going to have a different weight/cups conversion so you need to google something like "how many cups is 100 grams of arrowroot flour" and then a separate one for the other flours.
Kaylene I. November 20, 2013
Kathy: You really, really want to buy a food scale and use that. I used a food scale for the first time in the culinary program I went through and it was one of the best things I ever learned. You get incredible consistency in your recipes and it is very easy to scale your recipes using that method. My teacher shared an Excel file that let us make conversions with these recipes--which is only possible when using weights instead of measures. Professionals use weights rather than measures.
Martha November 15, 2013
These look wonderful! Thank you so much for sharing the recipe. I need to go buy some new flours since I've only used almond and coconut for gluten free before. So glad to find a recipe that doesn't need eggs as I recently found out I have a sensitivity to the whites.
Dana November 12, 2013
Did you use cooked or raw honey? I have found that it can make a difference in the consistency in breads. Before I screw your beautiful recipe up with my own experiments, I would like to make it exactly like you once. :)
Dana November 14, 2013
I decided to take a chance and used raw honey. They turned out great! I also had to go buy a scale - but that's something I've been wanting to do for months so your dinner rolls were a perfect excuse. Thanks!
Kaylene I. November 20, 2013
Raw honey is better for so many reasons. I am so glad your recipe turned out well. I am also glad you bought the scale. You won't regret it.
elizabeth November 11, 2013
Just made these. Had to buy a scale lol! There is a whole lotta yeasty goodness, and elasticity going on here! YUM! Thanks so much,well worth the effort.
Terri November 10, 2013
That is a lot of butter. That's not a mis-print? My dough was too thin. What would be the reason?
Jamil November 9, 2013
I am allergic to eggs, nuts, honey, and flour. What are my options for substitutions?
Jacqie T. November 8, 2013
If I used the ground husks instead of the whole husk, would that have contributed to the doughiness in the middle?
Trish November 6, 2013
I did make these last night... they were delish! They browned quickly on the top, but the middle of the pan was a little soggy, so I might turn the temp down next time, or maybe cover them if they start to brown too fast.
Petra F. November 6, 2013
I'm in the middle of the 21 day sugar detox and am wondering if it would work to omit the honey? Thanks! They look incredible!
Trish November 6, 2013
I think it depends on what level of the 21 day you are doing. There are a lot of carbs in the starches. The honey feeds the yeast, but I think you can proof yeast without anything at all, just the warm water
Taryn November 6, 2013
Yeast feeds off sugar, as Trish mentioned.
Absolutely you can proof the yeast with just water, but you likely won't get quite as fluffy of a bun. I would love to hear how it goes. I have experimented proofing with and without a sugar and I always get better success when I do.
Jacqie T. November 8, 2013
I blended half of a green apple with the warm water before I added the yeast, just to try and keep some of the sweetness. The yeast seemed to work just fine. I'm curious what the best way to omit the potato starch would be. I just added more arrowroot and left it out. The middle was a little doughy, but it's something I'll definitely play with in the future!
Taryn November 11, 2013
Hey Jacqie. I wonder if the extra moisture the apple brought made the inside a little doughy? Maybe try sprinkling in a bit more of the flour next time or a bit more psyllium?
susanl November 6, 2013
Don't anyone ask for an ingredient substitution or any help with the recipe! Shauna hates people who do that. Please respect her hard work and don't annoy her!!!
glutenfreegirl November 6, 2013
Oh that's a vast oversimplification! What would you like to know?
yesbreathe November 9, 2013
Well, for starters, why you have to be so rude to people who merely want to (wait for it...) feed themselves safely.
yesbreathe November 9, 2013
Sorry, my bad. I meant "why you have to grow so rude."
simone November 5, 2013
I try to pretend I hate baking, so have never gotten a proper kitchen scale. I'm ordering one on Amazon. Right. Now. So excited for these (and your new policy, which I plan on referring my readers to often!) xo
glutenfreegirl November 5, 2013
Thank you, Simone!
Ouida L. November 5, 2013
Just for clarity's sake - do you use the psyllium husk powder or simply the husks (I have both)?
glutenfreegirl November 5, 2013
You use psyllium husks.
Trish November 5, 2013
I wonder how this would turn out as a loaf. I've been looking for a grain free bread recipe for my stuffing this year
glutenfreegirl November 5, 2013
I haven't made it as a loaf. But you're always welcome to try.
Jasmine A. November 5, 2013
These look amazing Shauna and I have all those ingredients in my cupboard right now :)
glutenfreegirl November 5, 2013
I'm glad you are making them!
Emma G. November 4, 2013
Thank you so much for this recipe Shauna, they look amazing! xx
glutenfreegirl November 5, 2013
Thank you, Emma.
Kaylene I. November 4, 2013
Can I substitute ground flax seed for the psyllium husk?
Kaylene I. November 4, 2013
Scratch this request!! I scrolled down further on my FB page and saw your opus on no more substitutions. So, I will either find the psyllium husk or just try experimenting with the flax seed. Thank you for your amazing recipes!!!
glutenfreegirl November 5, 2013
Thanks, Kaylene. I really don't know how they would work with flax, as I have never tried it. But it's worth a try.
Taryn November 6, 2013
Kaylene. I have used flax and chia as a replacement in some recipes. You must absolutely use fresh ground or else it wont hold. I used ready to use ground chai seeds in my birthday cake and it fell apart.
Kaylene I. November 6, 2013
Thank you, Taryn. That is good to know!
Amy November 12, 2013
Kaylene: I used ground flax in this recipe and it made the resulting rolls gummy. Perhaps I erred by put the ground flax in warm water to help it expand rather than just putting it in with the dry ingredients.
Kaylene I. November 12, 2013
Thanks for the info, Amy. I am going to *practice* these rolls before Thanksgiving, so using this information, I am going to try some different variations, including the original, and one of those variations will include whole flax and see how that works.
Kaylene I. November 15, 2013
I tried the original recipe and these are so good!! I learned that you have to let them cool a bit before eating them, so they are not doughy. I will try the flax seeds later. We just found our Thanksgiving dinner rolls. Thank you, Shauna!