Baked Apple Ice Cream Bowl (gluten & sugar free)

2012-10-06 18.35.31[Update: I’m now allergic to apples and dairy, which makes this a no go for me.  But it’s good.  You should try it!]

Desserts have got to be one of the trickiest things, at least for me, to find yummy, naturally gluten-free recipes of.  It doesn’t help that I’m also sugar-free and have a whole litany of food allergies.  Makes desserts, well, challenging to find.

When I was a kid my grandma made the best apple dumplings every year during the holidays, and I’ve been wanting something similar that’d be gluten-free, sugar-free, and hopefully less labor intensive.  A pretty high order.

Pinterest provided a good starting point though when I stumbled across an apple recipe.  I altered it a bit–the apples are baked, mine’s sugar-free, along with a couple other alterations.  So Mr. Munger, the fiancé, and I tried it out when he was in the area this last weekend.  And it was a huge hit, even with the wheat-eaters.  Its picture really doesn’t do it justice.


Ingredients:

  • 6 large apples (personally, I like red apples)
  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoon Splenda® (or sugar)
  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • Vanilla ice cream (make sure it’s gluten-free!)
  • Caramel topping (be sure that this one’s gluten-free too, and if you want it to be sugar-free buy the kind sweetened with Spenda®)

Directions:

  1. Cut the tops of apples the way you would a pumpkin (enough so that the hole is big enough to allow you to hollow out the insides but still leaving the majority of the apple intact).
  2. Slowly, carefully hollow out each apple using a metal tablespoon or melon baller.  Unlike a pumpkin, the skin on the apples is fragile so don’t go too quickly or you might end up with a hole. (Don’t worry if it looks uneven on the inside because no one will see it anyway.)
  3. Mix the Spenda®/sugar, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg together in a small bowl.  And then rub mixture on the inside of all of the apples so that they all have a coating.
  4. Set the oven for 350 degrees F.  And bake for 25 to 30 minutes.  (The trick is to have your apples soft enough to easily eat while also being stable enough to hold together.)
  5. Once baked, immediately fill with the vanilla ice cream of your choosing (vanilla bean or French vanilla are my favorites) and top with warm caramel.
  6. Serve immediate.  And enjoy.

Cream Cheese Cookies (gluten & sugar free)

DSCF1450[Update: This is no longer something I can eat due to my dairy allergy, but I highly recommend it!]

I stumbled across the original recipe for cream cheese cookies on Food 52 thanks to Pinterest.  The lady sharing said the recipe has been in her family since the 1970s when her mom went to a Tupperware party and came home with a simple, yummy cookie recipe.   

The cookies sounded soft and delicious, so I modified the recipe to make it gluten-free by using brown rice flour, sugar-free by using Splenda©, and just for kicks I added a little bit of vanilla.  

These cookies were great!  My first very successful gluten-free, sugar-free cookies.


Ingredients:

  • 8 tablespoons butter (room temperature)
  • 3 ounces cream cheese (softened)
  • 1 and 1/4 cups Spenda©/sucralose (or 1 cup sugar)
  • 1 cup brown rice flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Directions:

  1. Beat butter, cream cheese, and Spenda© together in a bowl for a couple of minutes until the texture is fluffy and light.
  2. Add brown rice flour, vanilla, and salt and mix together.
  3. Once completely mixed, roll one-teaspoon-sized balls and place on cookie sheet (they can be a little bit larger than this but it’ll mean you may have to keep them in the oven for a little longer).  I patted mine down ever so slightly so that they would be a little rounder and thinner. 
  4. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 12-14 minutes, until the edges are golden brown.  Be very careful to not over bake the cookies, don’t want them to lose their soft centers.
  5. Once done, let them cool and eat up.    

Blueberry Cheesecake (gluten & sugar-free)

Cream cheese cupcakes[Update: Due to my dairy allergy, this isn’t something I can eat anymore.  But give it a try!  It’s tasty]

Mr. M’s just celebrated his 28th rotation around the sun.  Since our very first date to Seattle almost two years ago he’s been wanting to tour Seattle in the most culturally sophisticated way possible—The Duck.  When Mr. M first pointed out the super touristy, tacky duck-shaped boats and announced that he wanted to ride one I just laughed.

In honor of his birthday though I’m going to treat him to a tour via The Duck once spring quarter is over and he’s back for a week over break.  And I also made him mini blueberry cheesecakes to celebrate (note the lovely lit candles below).  And he seemed to really enjoy them.

I highly modified Suzanne Somers’ New York Cheesecake recipe from her book Somersize Desserts.  While it isn’t specifically gluten-free, a lot of the recipes in the book tend to be naturally gluten-free.


Yields: About 18 cupcakes.

Ingredients for Cupcakes :

  • 3 (8-ounce) packages of cream cheese (room temperature)
  • 1 and 1/4 cups Splenda/sucralose
  • 3 large eggs (at room temperature)
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup frozen or fresh blueberries (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest (optional)

Ingredients for Topping:

  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup Splenda/sucralose

Directions:

  1. Place cupcake liners in muffin tins and set aside.
  2. Beat cream cheese and Spenda together in a large bowl (it will turn out better if you wait until the cream cheese is at room temperature).
  3. Add eggs, beating after each addition.  Then add sour cream, lemon juice, lemon zest, and vanilla.  After mixing, carefully add blueberries.  Don’t kill it, just mix until it’s smooth.
  4. Use a 1/4 measuring cup to divvy up the cream cheese mixture evenly into the cupcake liners.  Fill each cupcake liner about 3/4 of the way full.
  5. Bake at 300 degrees for 25 minutes (0r until a toothpick comes out clean).
  6. In a smaller bowl, mix together sour cream and Splenda for the topping.  Once the cupcakes have cooled completely the in the refrigerator, spread sour cream frosting on top of them.

Cream Cheese cupcakes 3

Pumpkin Cupcakes (gluten-free & sugar-free)

Main picture[Update: Due to my dairy allergy, frosting these little guys is sadly no longer an option.  They’re pretty darn amazing frosted.  And I haven’t tried them out with egg-free egg substitute yet but I’m hopeful that’ll work]

I don’t really believe in “seasonal food.”  Some foods are definitely fresher (and cheaper) if you buy them when they’re in season, but something like canned pumpkin doesn’t really matter.  It’s just generally considered a fall/holiday food.

But I love pumpkin, so despite the fact that it’s late spring I’ve made a couple batches of my new favorite gluten-free cupcakes lately.  And they’ve been quite a hit.  They might not look like anything special, but the multiple requests for me to make them again makes me feel like I’m finally starting to figure this whole gluten-free but still delicious thing out.

You can eat these like muffins, but they taste fantastic if you also frost them with homemade Cream Cheese Frosting.


Ingredients

  • 3 and 1/3 cups Splenda/sucralose (or 3 cups sugar)
  • 1 cup cooking oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 and 1/3 cups brown rice flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1 15-ounce can of pumpkin

Directions:

  1. Set the oven for 400 degrees.  And put about 24 cupcake liners into muffin tins (greasing might also work but because gluten-free baked goods tends to be so fragile, I’d be afraid it’d fall apart when it’s taken out of the pan).  Set it aside for later.
  2. Beat Splenda, eggs, and oil together in a bowl.
  3. Combine flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg together in a large bowl.
  4. Once mixed, alternately add flour mixture and water to Splenda mixture.  Use the electric beaters on low after each addition.  Now, beat in pumpkin until just combined.
  5. Use a spoon to carefully place the batter into the cupcake liners filling them about 2/3 of the way full.
  6. Bake cupcakes at 400 degrees for 18 minutes.
  7. Let the cupcakes cool for about 10 minutes before removing them from the pan.  Then, put them in the refrigerator so they can cool completely.  (While they taste good right after they’re made, they’ll taste the best after cooling all night in the refrigerator)
  8. Either eat them like muffins (they taste great with butter) or, better yet, frost them after they have cooled for at least a couple of hours.  Follow the Cream Cheese Frosting recipe, but add a pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg to give it more of a pumpkin-y flavor.
  9. Once you’ve frosted the cupcakes, let them cool for at least a couple of hours.  The cupcakes will taste better and be less fragile and the frosting will have time to set.  Once they’re done cooling, enjoy.

Finished

Oatmeal Muffins (gluten-free & sugar-free)

Muffins[Update: Sadly, due to things like eggs, milk, and oats this recipe is no longer something I can eat.  But it’s yummy, so I’ve left it on the blog]

My gluten-free oatmeal muffins were very loosely based on the basic muffin recipe in my Better Homes and Gardens® Cook Book.  Even though I can’t eat most of the recipes without making alterations, it’s still one of my favorite cookbooks because it’s great for getting ideas and the cooking tips and suggestions are helpful.  I love it.       

I was very happy with how well these muffins turned out.  And, to my surprise, the wheat-eaters in the family even enjoyed them, commenting how they wouldn’t have known they were gluten-free.  The oatmeal (gluten-free variety, of course) added texture, which was nice since most nuts are off limits due to allergies.  Perhaps next time I’ll try banana or blueberry.  What are your favorite types of muffins?


Serving: Makes 12 muffins (if you’re using a standard sized cupcake tin)

Ingredients:

  • 1 and 1/3 cup rice flour
  • 3/4 cup oats (most oats are not gluten-free, so I recommend Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-free Oats)
  • 1 cup Spenda (or generic brand of sucralose)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1/4 cup cooking oil

Directions:

1.  Place liners in the cupcake tin.

Step 1

2.  Mix dry ingredients together in a bowl (everything except the oil, milk, and egg).  In a separate bowl, mix the wet ingredients together.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until moistened (it’s fine if it’s still lumpy).

Step 2

3.  Spoon the batter into the cupcake liners, leaving room for them to grow (filling about 2/3 of the way seems to work well).

DSCF0764

4.  Bake at 400 degrees for 18 minutes (a toothpick should come out clean).

5.  They can be served hot, but they’ll be more apt to fall apart when you’re eating them.  Or if you let them cool in the refrigerator before eating, they’ll hold together better.  Whenever you decide to serve them, enjoy.  They taste great with butter.

Step 5 (2)

Cake Brownies (gluten & sugar free)

DSCF0357[Update: As a result of new allergies, this isn’t something I can eat anymore.  But I’ve decided to leave it on the blog because they’re still yummy] I’d made gluten-free, egg-free, lactose-free brownies before (see the recipe) and they’d turned out well, but today I was in the mood for brownies that had a more brownie-like consistency.  So I decided to try a completely different recipe. These cake brownies are a bit lighter than usual brownies (they’re more like mini cakes in some ways than brownies), but they still hit the spot and they were very easy to make.


Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 1 and 1/2 cups Splenda or generic brand of sucralose (if you don’t need it to be sugar-free, you can use 1 and 1/4 cups sugar)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 and 1/2 cups brown rice flour (gluten-free)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup milk

Directions:

  1. Microwave butter until melted (or you can melt it on the stove in a saucepan).
  2. Stir melted butter, Splenda, and cocoa powered together in a bowl.
  3. Add the two eggs and vanilla, gently mixing until just combined.
  4. In another bowl, combine rice flour, baking powder, and baking soda together.
  5. Now, take turns adding the four mix and milk to the cocoa mixture and stirring after each.
  6. Pour the batter into a pre-greased 15x10x1 pan.
  7. Frost the brownies once they’re cooled.  I used Pillsbury Creamy Supreme Sugar Free Chocolate Fudge Flavor Frosting but you could also make homemade frosting.
  8. After you’ve frosted the brownies, let them sit in the refrigerator so the frosting can set (it’ll make it easier to cut through).  Then, serve and enjoy.

Chocolate Birthday Cake (gluten & sugar free)

[Update: Due to new allergies, this isn’t something I can eat anymore.  But I’ve left it on the blog because it’s tasty]

In honor of my sister’s seventeenth birthday, I attempted my first gluten-free cake.  As many gluten-free people know, a birthday just isn’t quite the same without cake.

I didn’t have much luck finding a classic chocolate cake recipe that was gluten-free, so I modified a standard cake recipe by changing the flour and sweetener.

Unfortunately, I got a little confused while mixing the ingredients, didn’t mix them in quite the right order, so the cake turned out a little denser than I would’ve liked.  It still tasted nice, though.  I also discovered that frosting a cake is much harder than I’d imagined. My hat goes off to everyone who is able to make frosting look like an art form (I’m just happy if I can get it on the cake and not all over the kitchen).


Allergan/Sensitivity Info: Gluten-free, sugar-free, nut-free.   

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 softened butter (don’tput it in the microwave, let it stand for about 30 minutes)
  • 3 eggs (these also need to be at room temperatures, so you can let them sit with the butter)
  • 2 cups brown rice flour(gluten-free)
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder (check the label to make sure it’s gluten-free)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 and 1/3 cups Spenda/generic brand of sucralose (you can also use 2 cups sugar instead if you don’t need it to be sugar-free)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 and 1/2 cups milk

Directions:

  1. Lightly grease the bottoms of two cake pans (either 8x8x2-inch square pans or 9×1 1/2-inch round pans).  Line the bottoms of the pan with waxed paper (I didn’t have any on hand so I lightly dusted the bottom of the pans with coco powder after I’d greased them).
  2. Stir together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt (in other words, all of the dry ingredients except the Spenda/sugar).
  3. Use an electric mixer to beat the butter for about thirty seconds. Then, slowly add Spenda/sugar and beat it for a couple of minutes until well combined (don’t forget to scrape the sides of the bowl).
  4. Add eggs to the butter and Speenda/sugar mix.  Mix for about a minute after adding each egg.  Then, beat in vanilla.
  5. Now, alternate between adding the milk and the flour mixture to the butter mix.  Beat together.
  6. Divide the batter between the two pans and spread it out evenly.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes (until a toothpick comes out clean).
  8. Cool cakes completely before removing them from the pans.
  9. Frost with whatever you like and serve.  I used Pillsbury’s Creamy Supreme vanilla frosting (both sugar-free and gluten-free).  Homemade cream-cheese frosting would also be yummy.

Chocolate Mousse (gluten & sugar free)

Chocolate Mousse[Update: I can no longer eat dairy, found out that I’m allergic.  But because this recipe was one of my all-time favorite desserts, I’ve left it on the blog]

Valentine’s Day may be over, but that’s no reason to put the chocolate away.  Bring on the mousse!

You can buy gluten-free, sugar-free mousse mixes in the store, but they’re kind of pricy and the ingredient list contains way too many unidentifiable things.  This is cheaper not only cheaper, but it also only has four ingredients.  And it’s super simple, quick, and quite yummy.

It’s also a great desert to serve picky wheat-eaters (you know, the ones who think anything that says it’s “certified gluten-free” will taste like dirt) because they’ll never guess it’s gluten-free!


Allergan/Sensitivity Info:Gluten-free, egg-free, soy-free, nut-free, sugar-free.

Yields: About four to six servings (it just really depends completely on how much you’re in the mood for chocolate).

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup Splenda (or any generic form of sucralose)

Directions:

  1. Use an electric mixer to mix cream until it just starts to get fluffy.
  2. Add vanilla, cocoa powered, and Splenda.
  3. Mix until light and fluffy (be careful to not over mix the cream because it won’t be as light and fluffy then).
  4. Divide into smaller containers (or you could always eat it right out of the bowl), and serve.  You can also let it sit in the refrigerator if you want it to be colder.  It tastes quite nice chilled, but I can never wait that long.

Banana Bread (gluten & sugar free)

DSCN1080[Udpate: Due to new found allergies, no longer something I can eat.  But because I liked it I’ve left it on the blog for those who are just gluten-free]

Due to snow-related power outages, I hadn’t cooked anything new for a few days.  During the storm, my family and I ended up eating the toppings for the pizza I’d planned to make, so I was out of ideas and out of ingredients.

But the bananas in the kitchen were just on the verge of becoming unusable, so on a whim I decided to try and make banana bread.  And the result was quite tasty.


Ingredients:

  • 2 cups Bob’s Red Mill white rice flour
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking power (be sure to check that it’s gluten-free)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 beaten eggs
  • 1 and 1/2 cups mashed bananas (works out to about four to five bananas)
  • 1 and 1/4 cups Splenda (or any generic form of sucralose)
  • 1/2 cup cooking oil or melted butter

Directions:

  1. Grease the bottom and sides of loaf pan.
  2. Combine first six ingredients in a bowl—rice flour, baking power, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine eggs, bananas, Splenda, and melted butter/cooking oil.
  4. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture.  Combine until all of it is moist, but don’t worry about getting out all the lumps.
  5. Spoon the batter into the pre-greased pan.  And bake at 350 F for 40 minutes (or until a knife comes out clean).
  6. Let the loaf cool completely once it’s done baking.  Then, wrap it in plastic wrap or foil and store it in the refrigerator overnight.  If you’re antsy and can’t wait for morning, your banana bread will be crumbly but it’ll still taste great!

Cream Cheese Frosting (gluten-free & sugar-free)

DSCN0802[Update: Well, I’m now allergic to dairy, so cream cheese frosting isn’t an option anymore.  But it’s pretty good, and easy, so give it a try!]

Making frosting from scratch was a new experience for me.  And, of course, the fact that it needed to be both gluten and sugar free and hopefully still tasty, made it seem a little more daunting.

As a result, I was pleasantly surprised with how easy (and yummy) cream cheese frosting turned out to be.  And it works well with chocolate cupcakes.


Allergan/Sensitivity Info:

Yields: About 3 and 2/3 cups (just enough to frost 18 cupcakes or a small cake).

Ingredients:

  • One 8-ounce package of cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup of butter (softened)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 4 cups Splenda (or generic form of sucralose)

Directions:

  1. With an electric mixer, beat together cream cheese, butter, and vanilla.
  2. Slowly add Splenda.
  3. After everything is well mixed, frost cupcakes or cake or cover and store it in the refrigerator.