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Easy As Sliced Bread . . .
When my husband and I married, one of the many gifts we received at our wedding was a Crock-Pot®. Being a young, vibrant bride at the time, it gave off geriatric mystery potluck vibes, and I honestly could not see a use for it. So, for awhile, its main purpose was to collect dust in my pantry. As the years went by, however, I became a more experienced cook who soon realized the beauty of that small, lonely appliance. I discovered I could make soups, lasagnas, chilies, Thanksgiving turkey, roasts, and even slow cooker gluten free bread.
Long ago, a food blog I follow—A Drizzle of Oil and a Pinch of Salt—made a blog post about a beautiful herbed bread recipe in their Crock-Pot®. Who knew you could bake bread in a Crock-Pot?!
In the past, I could say I’m not a great baker. Today, I can readily admit that I’m not the best. But, my family loves bread, and because we are “mostly” gluten-free due to my son’s sensitivity and my own, breads are my guiltiest pleasure and I’ve had to push myself to learn how to enjoy food without it. The day I discovered my first slow-cooker bread recipe, my hope was renewed. I wanted so badly to be able to provide my family homemade bread without all the stress of feeling like a pretend baker, which is why I was so intrigued and excited at the prospect of what seemed to be an effortless method for bread-making.
Even though my excitement was piqued, the first recipe was not gluten-free. “Surely, if there are Crock-Pot® bread recipes now, then there’s got to be gluten-free slow-cooker bread recipes, as well.” I thought to myself. With Google on my side, I soon stumbled upon a very helpful blog by Stephanie O’dea, who explained that the boxed gluten-free bread mix from Whole Foods Market would work perfectly for the Crock-Pot®.
Unfortunately, the closest Whole Foods Market to me was over an hour away, but I did have another box of gluten-free bread from Gluten-Free Pantry. I followed her directions and my loaf rose beautifully, but with my six-quart Crock-Pot®, I could only use a regular sized bread pan. The dough rose so much that it dropped over the sides, and the middle of the bread fell flat. The bread cooked and tasted great, but it looked unappealing and the bottom quarter was over-cooked compared to the top.
On my second attempt, I put in half the amount split between two pans, thinking it would rise to the top of the pan and I would get two loaves out of it. I did get two loaves, but they did not rise enough. Still, they tasted yummy!
For my third and final attempt, I decided to put a buffer between my pan and the bottom of the Crock-Pot®. Some slow-cooker bakers suggest using crumpled aluminum foil, but I had some canning rings. I used four of those instead. I also did not use a spoon to prop open the lid like Stephanie did with her recipe, which is supposed to help it cook more evenly. Another change I made was to switch to a different pan. I did not use my regular-sized pan. Instead, I used an oval white Corelle® serving dish. It was oven-safe and the same height as the bread pan, only wider. My hope was that the excess space would allow for the bread to rise to the top without spilling over because it could spread out more. Three hours later, I had a beautiful and evenly-cooked gluten-free sandwich bread!
I am beyond pleased with this and excited to share it with you, because it wasn’t difficult at all once I discovered a good system. It’s less expensive to run a Crock-Pot® than most ovens, and you can make a plethora of slow-cooker bread recipes every summer without heating up your kitchen. Isn’t it awful when you’re trying to prepare a meal and the oven is making it unbearable to even be in the kitchen? That’s just one reason why I choose my slow-cooker over the oven these days. Overall, bread in a Crock-Pot® is super easy. Just set a timer, walk away, and let the Crock-Pot® do all the work—from rising to baking!
How to Make Slow Cooker Gluten Free Bread
- 1 box of gluten-free bread mix (Follow the directions on the box in terms of ingredients).
- Use a large slow-cooker if you have one. Mine is a six-quart oval Crock-Pot®, but you could make breads in a circle slow-cooker. You may even have an Instant Pot (InstaPot).
- Use cooking spray or shortening to grease the inside of your baking pan (not the slow cooker).
- Mix the ingredients as specified on box. Add crumpled aluminum foil or use some canning rings laid on the bottom to create an air space buffer between the bottom of the pan and the slow-cooker. Place your pan with the bread dough into the Crock-Pot®, put the lid on, and turn your Crock-Pot® to “high.”
- My bread was done in three hours, but different slow-cookers cook differently. I recommend the first couple of times to check your bread at about the two-hour mark to estimate when your bread will be done.
- NOTE: I used a mix, but I assume you could do things from scratch as my readers later told me. Just follow the same process used here, but with your own ingredients.
Gluten Free Bread in a Crock-Pot
- One box of gluten-free bread mix
- Follow the directions on the box in terms of ingredients
- Use a large slow cooker if you have one. Mine is a six quart oval Crock-Pot, but you could make bread in a circle slow cooker also.
- Use cooking spray or shortening to grease the inside of your baking pan (not the slow cooker).Crock Pot Bread
- Mix the ingredients as specified on box. Add crumpled aluminum foil or use some canning rings laid on the bottom to create an air space buffer between the bottom of the pan and the slow cooker. Put your pan with the bread dough into the Crock-Pot, put the lid on, and turn your Crock-Pot to high.
- My bread was done in three hours, but different slow cookers cook differently. I recommend the first couple of times to check your bread at about the two hour mark to estimate when your bread will be done.
This slow cooker gluten free bread is super-easy and I wish I had thought of this sooner. In fact, when I originally wrote this article, I planned to do several blog posts dedicated to baking bread, cakes, and many other things in my Crock-Pot®. And, guess what? That’s exactly what I did! Feel free to check out and share my Crock-Pot® recipes:
That’s it for now. I really hope you get to baking some yummy slow cooker gluten free bread !
If you do try my gluten-free Crock-Pot® bread, I’d love to read about your experience and the taste-testing results in the comments below! What adjustments did you make? Is there anything you think I should try? I’m open to suggestions!