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What Are the Different Types of Gluten-Free Buns?

Gluten-free buns are often made from corn starch.
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  • Written By: Jennifer Voight
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 13 September 2014
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Gluten-free buns are just one of many new products introduced by manufacturers that are responding to public demand for more gluten-free foods. There are many types of gluten-free buns on the market, including gluten-free hamburger buns, gluten-free hot dog buns, and gluten-free sub sandwich rolls. For bakers who enjoy creating their own gluten-free buns, there are a plethora of recipes that promise lighter, moister breads. This is a huge improvement over the heavy, dry, crumbly gluten-free buns that these types of recipes might have yielded in the past.

Many people are unable to digest the protein in wheat, barley, and spelt called gluten. These people have either been diagnosed with celiac disease or gluten intolerance, both of which require complete abstinence from any products containing gluten. Although there are many other flours that can be used to make breads and buns, it’s difficult to duplicate the texture of wheat-based flours because of the elasticity gluten provides. Many companies have appeared since the 1980s and 1990s that make gluten-free items, like breads, pastas, and buns. They use alternative flours made from seeds, legumes, and grains to create their products and add stabilizers and texturizers, like xanthan gum and tapioca flour, to attain a bready texture.

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There are quite a few companies, mostly based in Europe and the US, that make gluten-free hamburger buns and hot dog buns. These products can be found online and in many health food stores and grocery stores that carry a natural foods department. It’s easy to find gluten-free hamburger and hot dog buns within most metropolitan areas.

Some gluten-free bun products are more difficult to find and are typically available online only. This includes at least one company that manufactures parbaked gluten-free sub sandwich buns made with corn starch, rice flour, and psyllium seed husks. Another company makes gluten-free hoagie rolls that are available through online retailers. There are also companies that make gluten-free mixes for making buns, rolls, and flatbreads.

The best way to eat a gluten-free bun is to toast it lightly before adding toppings. The flours in gluten-free buns tend to produce a bun that gets soggy when introduced to sandwich toppings and condiments. One company has partially solved this problem by introducing a heartier, multigrain bun product. The denser texture resists sogginess better than buns made with finer-ground flours.

For anyone who enjoys gluten-free baking, there are many cookbooks and websites devoted to gluten-free cooking. Many recipes can be found for gluten-free hamburger and hot dog buns. These recipes require a mixture of several different gluten-free flours and texturizing ingredients, like xanthan gum and arrowroot.

Usually recipes for gluten-free buns produce dough that is runnier than that made with wheat flour. Some clever cooks use English muffin molds or egg rings to hold the dough in a round shape during rising and baking. Another tip is to allow the bun dough to rise in a warm oven before baking. Like their commercially manufactured counterparts, freshly baked gluten-free buns must be consumed quickly or frozen for later use, as they don’t keep as well as baked goods made with wheat flour.

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