Gluten Free Naan

Gluten Free Naan Bread

Do you know naan?  Of course you do.  It’s a traditional flatbread that’s popular in many countries.

This gluten free naan is made without xanthan gum or eggs, getting it’s elasticity instead with the help of tapioca starch in the form of a gel. The tapioca gel as egg/xanthan gum substitute idea is adapted from Cake and Commerce, a fantastic blog that’s definitely worth reading.

Unsweetened yogurt in the dough gives the naan a slightly tangy and somewhat sourdough-like flavor.  Sound familiar? Except . . .

Instead of the mix and bake method, an overnight stay in the fridge will substantially enhance the bubbly texture and flavor of the naan. Yeast needs time to work its magic in the refrigerator. A small amount of leavening stirred into the dough just before cooking will ensure a bread that rises to any occasion.

Be sure to read all the instructions before you begin. The cooking process is different from most breads. What starts in a skillet, ends in an oven. Why? I didn’t want to flatten the bubbles that formed on top. Instead of flipping and flattening those bubbles, I finished cooking the breads by baking them in the oven.  And if that sounds like naansense, and it just did to a seasoned naan maker, flip your bread in the skillet and cook an additional 2-3 minutes.

Naan cooked in skillet (only), hence the flattened bubbles. By the way, this bread is really great for pizza.

Gluten Free Naan Bread

In a microwave safe bowl, combine:
1 teaspoon tapioca starch
1/3 cup water

Heat for 30 seconds at full power in the microwave. Stir. Heat for another 15 seconds. Let gel cool slightly before continuing.

Add to tapioca gel in bowl:
1/3 cup unsweetened Greek or coconut yogurt
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons water

Sprinkle dry ingredients over liquid and blend:
2 cups sorghum flour blend
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon instant yeast
½ teaspoon salt

Tomorrow, stir in:
1/4 teaspoon instant yeast dissolved in 1 tablespoon of water

After mixing thoroughly, cover dough and let sit at room temperature for one hour.  Then store dough in the fridge overnight (about 8 – 12 hours).  The next day, remove dough from fridge and let sit at room temp for one hour before using.  Now is when you’ll stir in 1/4 teaspoon instant yeast dissolved in 1 tablespoon of water.

Shape naan using a #10 disher to drop dough into a heated, oiled pan. Use the back of a spoon to quickly spread dough out in the pan, flattening to about ¼ inch high. Let cook for 2-3 minutes on medium heat until bubbles appear on top. Flip bread over and cook an additional 2 minutes or so to finish.

OR transfer naan to a parchment lined pan and bake for 10 minutes in a 375 oven (if you don’t want to flatten those bubbles). Yield: 6 breads

Naan bread finished in the oven.

I’ve heard that the best naan includes cumin and asafoetida. What’s your favorite way to spice up naan?

Comments

  1. I will try this this weekend. I tried making naan one other time and it did not turn out well. Will have to sub out the almond flour. What do you recommend? Can not be oat or nut based.

    • Sue, just leave the almond flour out of your blend. It will be fine. This recipe is pretty forgiving – I’ve made it with a rice flour blend AND with a sorghum/tapioca blend.

  2. I made this recipe last night using homemade yogurt. It came out perfectly.

  3. Thank you for posting this! I’ve tried many naan/roti recipes and this one’s a keeper! Just made this for my 5 year old who is allergic to gluten, dairy, nut, and egg and it came out wonderfully! Had to replace with soy yogurt bc he’s also allergic to coconut. Can they be made in bulk and frozen? and defrosted for later use??

  4. So before you stir in the yeast, is it stored in the fridge or at room temperature the day before?

  5. I would like to make these; however I don’t tolerate sorghum flour nor rice flour nor yeast :(
    or dairy :( :(
    Can you recommend some alternatives?

    • Perhaps a paleo bread? Take a look at this roundup of gluten free bread recipes on Gluten Free Easily. Shirley notes which recipes are dairy free, grain free, etc. An excellent resource! If you find a recipe that works for your needs, you could probably cook or bake it naan style. Just fyi, coconut milk (full fat) is often a good sub for yogurt. But there’s also dairy free Greek yogurt that’s great. Hope that helps!

  6. I don’t have a microwave,can I make the tapioca gel on the stove,and if I can for how long should I boil it?Thank you.

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