Gluten Free Review: Gluten Free Bisquick

Gluten Free Review: Gluten Free Bisquick

Gluten free baking is a tricky thing.

Even though I used to bake a lot, I never really made much use of Bisquick. For most things, it's just as easy (and a lot quicker) to mix your own flour plus baking soda and whatever. Bisquick is one of those mystifying substances, the appeal of which is somewhat lost on me. It costs five times as much as the regular ingredients; why would anyone bother?

But Gluten Free Bisquick, that is another matter entirely!
 
Gluten free baking is a tricky thing. The flours themselves (almond flour, rice flour, brown rice flour, etc) are shockingly expensive. And most sources advise you to stock up on xanthan gum, whatever that is, and wherever the heck you're supposed to buy it.
 
In this case, even though I'm sure Gluten Free Bisquick really is quite a bit more expensive than the raw ingredients, I welcome its ease of use. The gluten free version of Bisquick is a mixture of rice flour, sugar, leavening (baking soda, sodium aluminum phosphate, monocalcium phosphate), modified potato starch, salt, and xanthan gum. 

 
There are not many recipes for Gluten Free Bisquick at this point, but there are enough basics to get you started. The list includes gluten free waffles, pancakes, biscuits, coffee cake, and more. Gluten free food bloggers are also a great source of recipes - here's one for blueberry scones!
 
I started out by making the biscuits, since that was always my favorite thing to make with Bisquick. The recipe called for three eggs: studying the others, many of them call for eggs. Eggs provide the structure that usually would be provided by gluten, I guess. 
 
The results were… okay, I suppose. The biscuits were a cheddary orange, which was a little confusing. (I used eggs from my pet hens, which have brilliant orange yolks.) They were a little on the dry side, but that was just an excuse to slather on lots of butter. They had a slightly gritty texture, not unlike the grit you find in corn bread, (Puzzling, as there is no corn meal in these.)
 
I look forward to trying pancakes and scones. I have the feeling that being able to slather proper homemade pancakes in warm butter and maple syrup will make up for a lot of the shortcomings of Gluten Free Bisquick! And if it is expensive - well, so are many other gluten free products. Given how difficult gluten free baking can be, Gluten Free Bisquick is a great transitional product for people who are not really "into" baking, or for those who have only recently gone gluten free.