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Author Katie Mettner

It's Gluten Free for Santa!

Merry holidays! No matter what or how you celebrate, these gluten free treats are something you'll want to make all year through. The recipes I'm sharing today are longtime family recipes that after a bit of adjusting I've managed to make gluten free with great success. In fact, the batch of waffle cookies I made today my husband told me he wouldn't know they were gluten free! (That's huge!) So, gather around the oven and get ready to enjoy some wonderful treats. 

A Few Tips Before We Begin
All these recipes are made with Pillsbury Gluten Free flour because it is made with the xantham gum already in it and it doesn't give the baked goods a grainy texture. It may not be the best choice in flours for overall living as a celiac patient, but hey, I never said any of these recipes were healthy ;) 

I have learned when it comes to gluten free baking you can't exchange it 'cup for cup' like the package says, at least not by just scooping the measure cup in and being 'close enough'. The best results with gluten free flour is using a spoon to fill the cup measure, then the old fashioned knife across the top or even just tap the spoon against the side to settle it. Then, dump it in a sifter. Add all the flour, then the other dry ingredients, and sift into the mixture. You'll have much better results. 

Room temperature is the KEY. Most people don't know when baking gluten free that room temperature eggs, crisco, and milk etc. must not be cold. I usually warm my eggs in the shell in a bowl with hot water from the tap until the water cools and that's good enough. Any other liquid make sure is also not right out of the fridge. 

When baking gluten free you'll have a problem if you use a pan that is dark. If you only have dark metal cookie sheets lower the heat of your oven by 25 degrees and watch them closely. You can also use parchment paper to prevent burning on the bottom. 

When making anything with dry yeast, make sure the yeast does not touch the salt


You may be wondering what the heck this is, right? Exactly what they say they are, cookies made on a waffle iron, and they are delish. I only make this cookie at Christmas because it's something we look forward to this time of year. My grandmother always made these cookies and we didn't have to be very old to help her because it uses the waffle iron instead of the big oven. We always used green or red sugar on the cookies to make them festive. 
(Tip, make sure to cool these in the fridge or cold garage once you make them. It will meld the flavors together, which I find is important with gluten free stuff. You can also store them in a sealed container in the garage for a couple weeks, if they stick around that long)

3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup Butter flavor Crisco 
2 large eggs Room Temperature
1 tsp. Vanilla
Cream above

In bowl shift 
1 1/4 Pillsbury Gluten Free Flour
1/4 cup Cocoa
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp unflavored gelatin 

With mixer blend the flour mixture into the butter mixture until mixed well. 

Heat waffle iron (Belgian wafflemaker does not work) to it's highest temperature. Once hot drop small teaspoons of dough on the iron (I have a square one with four square waffles, so I make 8 cookies at a time, one tsp in each corner of each square)
Close lid and let bake for about 2 minutes then test for doneness. Cookie should not be brown on top. You want it set, but not crispy. (I suggest doing a test cookie to get the feel of it since you're new to the recipe) 

Cool cookies on rack and once finished frost with vanilla icing. You can use homemade or store bought vanilla or cream cheese icing. 

Homemade recipe
1/2 stick butter
1/4 cup milk
Powdered sugar until frosting consistency. 
(We always make it thick-thin, like a donut glaze at a bakery. We drop the top of the cookie in and then pull it out rather than spread it, but you can make it like butter cream and spread it. Both are good.)

One year I made these and didn't have enough places to keep them so I took an old coffee can (Plastic Folgers) and stored them in it, not even thinking about it. We went to eat the cookies and they tasted like a mocha drink. So good! 

My finished batch from today. Don't worry, the batch makes more, but I have three teenagers :)

This is the type of waffle maker I use

1 cup Butter Flavor Crisco
1/2 cup white sugar
1 egg room temperature
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp Almond extract
2 1/4 cup sifted gluten free flour
1/2 tsp unflavored gelatin

Mix the above well and then tint with green. Use cookie or spritz gun to make trees. Before baking sprinkle with sprinkles or colored sugar. Bake at 400 for 5 minutes or until brown on the bottom. Watch closely remember gluten free will burn quickly if not paying close attention. Cool completely to meld the flavors.

My nephew Cutter making spritz cookies with mom!


1 cup warm milk
2 Eggs (room temperature)
1 1/4 pack of dry yeast
4 cups gluten free flour Pillsbury flour
1 cup butter flavor crisco
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 Tsp Salt

If using a bread machine under the 'dough' cycle follow those instructions making sure the yeast doesn't touch the salt

If using regular methods mix the milk, eggs and yeast and let sit. Combine other ingredients in mixer and add yeast. Once combined let rise in warm place until double in size. (Don't do a punch down and another rise with gluten free flour). Once risen double in size divide dough in 4 and roll out between waxed paper in a circle. Spread with real butter and cut each circle in 8. Roll into crescent roll and place on pans. Let rise again (about an hour if it's warm) and then bake in 350 oven for 12 minutes. Cool on wire racks and then frost. 
I use 1/2 stick of butter melted, milk and powdered sugar whisking until it gets thick enough to spread,) Top with chopped walnuts or colored sugar)

Here they are before the second raise. You can see the croissant shape.

Depending on how you were raised you call them what you will, but they are usually super crumbly little balls of goodness without using gluten free flour. Hopefully these tips will help.

Mix together
1 cup soft butter of butter flavor Crisco
1/2 cup shifted powder sugar
1 tsp vanilla

Sift and stir in 
2 1/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp unflavored gelatin

Once that is mixed well add 3/4 cup finally ground walnuts

Chill dough only long enough to handle it to roll into balls. Longer and they won't bake up right. If the dough wants to stick to your hands use cold water on your hands or spray your hands with Pam Cooking spray (Don't use Pam baking spray that has gluten in it)
Roll the cookies in 1 inch balls and bake on ungreased cookie sheet at 375 10-12 minutes, watch bottom so they don't burn. 
Once out of the oven let cool for several minutes on rack and then roll in powdered sugar. Cool completely and then roll in sugar again. 


A variation on this cookie is to use the same recipe and make the 1 inch balls. Then add a half candied cherry to the top of the cookie when they come out of the oven. Don't roll in sugar. It makes the cookies a little less sweet and easier to eat without the powdered sugar. Just make sure to put the cherry on immediately so it stays on once cool. 

Messy but tasty! 

Magic Bars

You may be very familiar with this simple recipe for the bars, I have just converted the crust for you so they turn out wonderfully and everyone, gluten free and not gluten free alike, will love them. 

1 1/4 cup crushed Rice Crispies 
(I put them in the food processor to get an even consistency.)
1/4 cup finely ground walnuts
mix in bowl and set aside. 

Melt 1/2 cup butter or margarine and pour into 9 x 13
Sprinkle above crumb mixture evenly over butter and press down gently
Pour 14 ounce Sweetened Condensed Milk over crumbs evenly
Sprinkle 1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup coconut

Press all layers in gently and bake 25 minutes (or less watch this crust closely) at 350. Cool before cutting.

There you have it! A bunch of my favorite gluten free holiday recipes that make the season bright. If there are any recipes you're looking for and can't find, shoot me a question here or email me at and I'll see if I have what you're looking for. 

I hope you all have a great holiday season! 

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