Today’s recipe is for gluten free brioche buns that are so soft they almost feel like the real thing!
Update: for sweet brioche rolls (rather than burger buns), I now have another recipe.
I posted my first attempt at brioche buns a long time ago and although it gathered a good amount of attention, I wasn’t 100% happy with the result. I was new to baking bread at the time and still had a lot to learn (still do now at some extent!). After some practice, however, I have finally reached gluten free brioche buns perfection!
Even my non-coeliac boyfriend is so impressed, he went as far as saying they feel just like ‘normal’ bread. At least when straight out of the oven. Success!
I’m not even exaggerating when I say this. I never thought I would experience such soft, elastic, bouncy bread ever again, let alone it be homemade. The first bite honestly blew our mind!
I mean, look at it and see for yourself. When was the last time you were able to bend a gluten free bread bun like this? And without it breaking apart or at least crumbling a little!? This is so elastic it’s almost unreal. The closest I’ve come to what I remember real bread being in all my gluten free years.
The only downside – but this applies to all homemade bread, gluten free or not – is that these gluten free brioche buns are best eaten fresh. They do lose some of their elasticity by the next day, although they’re still very tasty and easily softened again in the microwave.
The nutrition side
Not that you need any other reason (or excuse) to eat brioche buns, but did you know that they’re also not too bad nutrition wise?
They contain less carbs than standard gluten free white bread rolls, a bit more protein (about 10% of your daily needs), a good amount of all vitamin B (including 17% of your daily B12 needs) and nearly 20% of your daily needs of Vit A and E. Among other things.
(Info taken from entering ingredients in a nutrition tracker)
Tips for best results:
1. Use bread flour.
2. Don’t skip or shorten the resting time. Be patient and let the dough double up in size. To make life easier – if you don’t have two hours to sit around at home while the dough rises by the oven – you can prepare it the day before and leave it to rise in the fridge overnight.
3. Use a bun tray. With gluten free dough needing more liquid than ‘normal’ bread, this is especially important for the buns to cook with the right shape. But if, like me, you don’t have one, then it’s ok you. You can still use a flat tray.
4. Freeze the dough before using it. Once you’ve allowed the dough to rise, put it in the freezer for 45 minutes to 1 hour. As the dough is very wet and impossible to handle (the ultimate downside of gluten free baking!), this will make it much easier to handle so you can actually shape it into buns.
5. Don’t let the gluten free brioche buns sit around for too long after being taken out of the oven. Homemade bread is notorious for drying out quickly so let them cool down a bit, then quickly store them in an air tight container.
6. Reheat next day (or older) leftovers in the microwave for 30 seconds to make them soft again.
7. They’re best eaten fresh, the same day you baked them. Like I mentioned above, homemade bread can taste fantastic when freshly made, but has a tendency to go stale pretty quickly. So I recommend making these fresh on the day you plan to eat them. I’ve never tried this, but some people make the dough in advance, keep it in the freezer and defrost as needed when they want bread so it’s something to consider for best results.
Gluten Free Brioche Buns Recipe:
FREEZING TIME: 45 mins to 1 hour
BAKING TEMPERATURE: 200C (400F)
Note: the amount of flour needed will depend on what flour blend you use as some need more liquid than others.
How to make the dough:
- Warm up the milk in the microwave in 10 seconds increments until lukewarm.
- Add the sugar and yeast to the warm milk, stir and let it sit for a few minutes until frothy (as seen in the picture above).
- Meanwhile, combine the flour, salt and xanthan gum (if applicable) in a mixing bowl.
- Melt the butter in the microwave in 10 seconds increments.
- Make a well in the middle of the flour and add the frothy yeast/milk mixture, melted butter and 2 eggs. Mix well until you reach a smooth creamy dough that resembles cake batter.
- Cover the bowl with cling film and let the batter rest and rise in a warm place for about 2 hours (or overnight in the fridge). What I do is turn the oven on to the lowest temperature and place the bowl on the opened door (so it’s not actually inside the oven). Note: grease the cling film with oil or a low calorie oil spray (my personal favourite) to make sure the dough doesn’t stick to it as it rises.
- Then put the risen dough in the freezer for 45 minutes to an hour. This will make the dough more solid and much easier to handle so you can actually shape it into buns.
How to make the buns:
- Grease a bun or normal baking tray with oil or cooking spray.
- Take the dough out of the freezer and shape it into buns with your hands. Now this dough is fairly sticky so you’ll want to wet your hands first (shake off any excess). Be gentle with the dough and don’t apply pressure; you just want to shape the buns while still keeping the dough light and airy. Pressing too hard will get rid of the air bubbles the yeast created so just pass the dough from one hand to the other gently without pressing.
- Place the brioche buns on the greased tray, leaving space in between each bun.
- Beat an egg and brush over the buns while also smoothing the surface and edges as much as possible.
- Bake in a pre-heated oven (200C/400F), on the middle shelf, for 20 to 25 minutes or until they turn golden.
- Let them cool on the baking tray for a bit and store in an air tight container. Note: don’t let them sit around for too long as homemade bread has a tendency to dry out quickly!
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