Customizing Vegan/Gluten-Free Recipes Can Be Fun And Easy Pea-sy
You don’t have to be vegan or gluten-free to enjoy recipes from a vegan or gluten-free cookbook. I’m neither and I absolutely love the Made With Love Cookbook by Kelly Childs and Erinn Weatherbie, owners of Kelly’s Bake Shoppe and Lettuce Love Café in Burlington, ON. However, sometimes it can be expensive to purchase ingredients like xanthan gum (a gluten-free thickener) or coconut sugar (an alternative to golden sugar) – especially if you don’t already have them in your kitchen cupboards. Plus, strange sounding ingredients can often make a simple recipe seem quite daunting.
But recipes are meant to be used as a guideline…
Break the rules! Make substitutions and experiment with different ingredients, or ones that you already have lying around for a customized recipe.
For example, I recently made these Love n’ Peas Muffins from the Made With Love Cookbook but used almond milk instead of rice milk, whole wheat all-purpose flour instead of gluten-free all-purpose flour, and pumpkin puree instead of butternut squash puree. I also used chia seeds instead of xanthan gum (the name of this product intimidates the hell out of me) but instead of following directions and adding them to the dry ingredients, I stirred them into the wet so they could absorb some of the liquid and thicken.
For the record…Google will be your best friend in this scenario! A simple search will provide a ton of different substitutes for eggs, flour, dairy and many other ingredients that vegan or gluten-free recipes often swap out.
The small changes I made to this recipe worked and these veggie filled muffins tasted great! They’re no longer gluten-free…but that’s exactly my point! You don’t have to be gluten-free or vegan to enjoy a plant-based, gluten-free cookbook. Just trial and error and have fun!
Ps. What are your thoughts about peas in muffins? Yay or nay?