Gluten Free Bread Bowls

Using Gluten Free Bread Bowls is the perfect way to serve your favourite hearty soup or stew. I had my doubts that baking gluten free bread bowls would work, but to my surprise, they were a huge success!

Gluten Free Bread Bowls from The Baking Beauties


With January still holding us in its cold grip, we’ve been enjoying quite a few soups & stews for dinner. The other day while I had soup cooking in the slow cooker, I decided to try my hand at baking gluten free bread bowls. Would it work? Would the bread hold its shape on a baking pan? Would the bread be dense enough to hold the soup without it becoming a big soggy mess?

I’m quite thrilled to say that it did work! And better than I thought, actually. I was trying to achieve a denser bread so that it would hold up to the soup that I would be serving in it, and it did not disappoint. Before pulling pieces of the bowl off and eating it, I actually had a second helping of soup in my bread bowl, and it held up beautifully.


Gluten Free Bread Bowls from The Baking Beauties


The dough is still softer than traditional wheat-based dough, so I had to grease my hands with a little bit of vegetable shortening to keep it from sticking. I simply formed the dough into four balls, let them rise for 30 minutes in a warm place, and baked them. As you can see, the results are beautiful browned loaves of bread.


Gluten Free Bread Bowls from The Baking Beauties


We let the bread sit on a cooling rack for about 30 minutes before slicing the tops off, and using a knife and spoon to remove the inside of the bread. You want to leave about a 3/4-inch wall around the outside. Fresh baked bread bowls, filled with your favourite chunky soup or stew, is the perfect dinner on these cold January nights.


Gluten Free Bread Bowls
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
  • 1 1/3 cups (280 ml) warm water, about 100°F
  • 1 tablespoon (12 grams) rapid rise yeast
  • 1 tablespoon (14 grams) granulated sugar or honey
  • 1 1/2 cups (240 grams) brown rice flour
  • 1 cup (125 grams) millet flour
  • 1 cup (120 grams) tapioca starch/flour
  • 1/2 cup (90 grams) sweet rice flour
  • 1/4 cup (40 grams) potato starch (not flour)
  • 1/4 cup (18 grams) dry milk powder
  • 1 tablespoon (10 grams) xanthan gum
  • 1 teaspoon (4 grams) salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (optional)
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons (45 ml) canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon (15 ml) apple cider vinegar
  • 1 egg white whisked with 1 tablespoon water, for an egg wash while baking
  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine warm water, yeast, and sugar (or honey) in a glass bowl. Stir & let sit 5 minutes. This allows the yeast to proof & shortens rising time.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the brown rice flour, millet flour, tapioca starch, sweet rice flour, potato starch, milk powder, xanthan gum, salt, and garlic powder (if using). Mix well.
  4. Add the eggs, oil, and apple cider vinegar to the yeast mixture. Whisk to combine.
  5. With mixer on lowest speed, slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients until combined. Scrape bottom and sides of bowl with rubber spatula. With mixer on medium speed, beat for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Grease your hands with some shortening, and divide and shape the dough into four even loaves.
  7. Cover lightly with a lint-free towel and let rise in a warm, draft-free place for 30-40 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375°F.
  9. Using a pastry brush, brush the loaves with half of the egg white wash (saving the remaining for a second brushing).
  10. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove the baking sheet from the oven, and brush with the remaining egg white wash. Return loaves to oven, and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes.
  11. Remove bread from baking sheet and place on a wire cooling rack. Cool for at least 30 minutes before removing the top and carefully scooping out the inside of the bread to make room for your soup or stew.
I like to let my bread rise in a slightly warmed oven. Turn the oven on to 100 degrees F (or the lowest temperature setting on your oven), and leave it on just until it gets warm (not hot) in the oven. Then turn the oven off, place the bread in the oven, and let it rise (the amount of time this takes depends on how warm the environment is that the bread is rising in. Cooler temps = longer rise time). Remove the risen bread to preheat the oven before baking.


Here are some soups and stews that would be great in these bread bowls:

Gluten Free Veggie Chowder

Gluten Free Veggie Chowder

Gluten Free Turkey Stew

Gluten Free Turkey Stew

Baked Potato Soup

Baked Potato Soup

Russian Mushroom and Potato Soup

Russian Mushroom and Potato Soup



43 Responses to Gluten Free Bread Bowls

  1. Marcia January 14, 2014 at 9:10 am #

    I can’t have dairy, is there a substitution for the dry milk?

    • Teri January 14, 2014 at 9:19 am #

      You can probably use coconut milk powder. I’ve seen that in a few grocery and bulk stores.

    • Jeanine Friesen January 14, 2014 at 10:34 am #

      Teri suggested a great substitute. You can also substitute with almond flour, or I’ve heard that Vance’s Dairy-Free Milk powder works well also.

    • Debbie K January 14, 2014 at 10:24 pm #

      You can use soy milk powder instead of dairy milk powder.As for the sweet rice flour what exactly is that from regular rice flour?also can it be replaced with cornstarch instead of using potato starch?

    • Annie January 28, 2014 at 9:05 am #

      I noticed that someone suggested Coconut Milk Powder as a substitute. I will caution you to read the ingredient label as it may actually NOT be dairy free. I was looking for a dairy free milk powder substitute prior to Christmas this year. While at our local health food store I asked for help someone directed me to Coconut Milk Powder assuming it was dairy free due to the name “Coconut”. It was the cashier who while looking for the bar code noticed the ingredient list and informed me that it in fact was NOT dairy free. I went off to search but this store did not carry anything that was actually dairy free. The next day I drove further out to another health food store with a very high reputation and sure enough there I found a substitute. The name of the product is “DariFree” – it is not only free of gluten but also free of Lactose, Casein, Cholesterol, Rice, Soy, Egg and Fat (which is great if you need to avoid any or all of those).
      Anyway, my apologies for the long winded response but I just wanted to share my experience with you in the hopes of preventing you from purchasing something and then getting sick from it :)

      • Jeanine Friesen January 29, 2014 at 1:09 pm #

        That is VERY good to know, Annie! I wouldn’t have thought of it having dairy in it either! Thank you so much for pointing that out – that’s why it’s a must to always ready ingredients. Thanks!! 😀

  2. nettie moore January 14, 2014 at 9:13 am #

    These look amazing! Nettie

  3. Wild Child January 14, 2014 at 9:22 am #

    Beautiful! My husband and I have often had the conversation how I’ll never have clam chowder in a bread bowl ever again – guess we are wrong! In this case…that’s perfectly ok with us. =]
    I’m thinking this would also be a great vehicle for my spinach appetizer dip. Your recipes are just the best! Thank you so much for sharing

    • Jeanine Friesen January 14, 2014 at 10:35 am #

      My husband thought of the spinach dip too, I think he misses it (he’s not even GF). 😉 It is my pleasure, glad that you’re enjoying the recipes!

  4. Tamar Lundeen January 14, 2014 at 10:08 am #

    This is awesome! We just got back from San Francisco on the warf. We went to Boudin’s Bread factory. Oh My! Smelled so good, hated to ask if they had gluten free. No, they don’t. But so many of the restaraunts on the warf serve chowder and soup in the bread bowls, there were people walking and eating out of them. So, thank you , hope to try this soon. On that note, I discovered that the Hard Rock Cafe was very accomodating and had GF burger buns. Yeah! Also at the Blue Bayou in Disneyland. I was sad to sit while my husband ate dinner rolls. A few minutes later our waiter came out with GF for me! They wer also very accomodating, going over the menu and telling what was safe and not.

    • Jeanine Friesen January 14, 2014 at 10:37 am #

      Oh, Tamar, so sad to visit a bread factory, and smell that, and not be able to partake! :( Glad that you’ll be able to eat your bread out of a bowl now too. 😀 I’ve heard that Disney is very accommodating with all allergies, glad to hear you had a great experience!

  5. Laurel January 14, 2014 at 10:32 am #

    Well, you know how I said beefy pizza today? I lied. Once I saw this I knew I had to try it. So, what did I change? 1/4 Hazelnut flour for the dried milk powder; 1 Tbsp Pixie Dust for the xanthan powder; 1 tsp soured kefir water (like vinegar) for the uh, vinegar; 2 tsp baking powder and a new egg replacer (1/2 C water mixed with 1 Tbsp arrowroot powder, boiled with 1/8 tsp agar, well because) stirred constantly and boiled another minute. Good olive oil for the canola and two grated cloves of garlic. Phew!
    It’s anyone’s guess what the pixies will happen but it is now sitting in my preheated oven hopefully rising. :-)
    I’ll let you know later.

    • Jeanine Friesen January 14, 2014 at 10:38 am #

      Laurel, you are a mad scientist! So awesome! So, you’re also making them yeast free then? Fingers crossed for you!! Update me when you’re done!

      • Laurel January 14, 2014 at 12:02 pm #

        I used yeast but added baking powder because I wouldn’t have had the rise from the eggs. I was hoping for ciabatta bread. It pretty much worked except next time I’ll just use one tsp baking powder because they look like giant molasses cookies. Good though, really great sandwich loaves.
        One question, you use regular brown rice flour rather than superfine right? I think that’s why mine didn’t have as much body. Other than that I’m really pleased.
        Thank you.

        • Jeanine Friesen January 14, 2014 at 7:53 pm #

          I use Bob’s Red Mill brown rice flour, which I think is considered a superfine flour? I could be wrong… Glad that it worked, even with ALL the changes that you had to make. 😀

    • June K June 13, 2014 at 8:44 pm #

      Hi Laurel,

      thanks for your list of recipe changes. I have a question: What is Pixie Dust? I have an intolerance of the usual gums used in GF baking so was interested to see your comment of subbing Pixie Dust for the Xanthan gum.

      June K

    • June K June 13, 2014 at 9:01 pm #

      Hi Laurel,

      thanks for listing the substitutions you made to this recipe. How did it come out? I was interested in your subbing Pixie Dust for Xanthan gum. I have an intolerance to all the gums used in GF baking. What is Pixie Dust and where do you purchase it?

      June K

  6. Megan | Allergy Free Alaska January 14, 2014 at 12:19 pm #

    Those are some beautiful bread bowls, Jeanine! LOVE the golden crust! You nailed it!

    • Jeanine Friesen January 14, 2014 at 7:53 pm #

      Thank you, Megan! Sometimes, I even surprise myself! Couldn’t believe how nice they looked. 😀

  7. Lorna January 14, 2014 at 7:49 pm #

    I’ve been GF for about 8 months and probably like most folks…yeast breads seem to be the greatest challenge.. It’s taken me all this time to find your website….but I’ve been busy trying some of your cookies for Santa recipes (really love those lemon squares!) and I can’t wait to try the bread bowls….they look amazing! I notice though that you use a stand mixer, something I don’t own. I;m seeing that many of the GF bread recipes talk about the stand mixer being a necessity….what’s your feeling on this? I only have a Kitchen Aid 7 speed hand mixer (so pretty heavy duty) but it doesn’t have a dough hook and I’ve inquired and been told that I can’t but one for it. I really don’t want to spend the money for a hand mixer and I really don’t have space to store one. How about a food processor/ I used to use my Cuisinat to make my old family recipe of Oatmeal Molasses Brown bread (back in the pre GF days). Ideaas and thoughts please!

    • Jeanine Friesen January 14, 2014 at 7:56 pm #

      Hi Lorna, welcome here! :) If you’re still searching for a good bread recipe, I’d encourage you to try the millet sandwich bread recipe, everyone is really liking that one!
      My thoughts on the stand mixer? I think it’s a necessity too. sorry, I know that’s not what you wanted to hear. I talk about it in the millet bread post too, going into more detail. I know you ‘can’ make it work with bowl & spoon, and a whole lot of arm power, but you really want to get it whipped, if possible. That’s why the stand mixer works so great. Does your food processor have a dough blade?? That could possibly work. I have a food processor with the dough blade, but haven’t tried it for bread dough. Since gluten-free dough is stickier (almost like a thick cake batter), it might work well in there!

    • laurel January 10, 2015 at 3:22 pm #

      You need to try the Danish Dough Whisk for $7 including shipping on Amazon. It is awesome. Not just for bread doughs but anything heavy like peanut butter cookies. Some you don’t knead GF bread there is no reason you’d need a heavy stand mixer. I bought 4 of those whisks last summer for everyone i know. Well, my sister and 2 bridal shower gifts.

      • laurel January 10, 2015 at 9:06 pm #

        The only reason i know of top use a mixer is to be sure all ingredients are perfectly blended. To ensure that, i whisk my dry ingredients with a regular whisk and also sift them into the yeast mixture.

        I made this tonight and the bowls are AWESOME.

  8. Erin Mataj January 14, 2014 at 8:35 pm #

    Can I just say, I love you! Those look amazing. I have been GF for a while and just went without all the goodies I love. I just made the decision to put my whole family on the path to being GF (Wheat free). My husband has been complaining about the cost of GF breads…we got into an argument about it at Costco today! But I will win in the end if I can bake the family up some of these bread rolls! They look amazing! Thank you, and I’m signing up for your newsletters right now!

  9. erin January 14, 2014 at 9:27 pm #

    When I saw the photo of those bread bowls in my email I am pretty sure I could smell the bread.
    They look THAT good. It’s been a long time since fresh baked bread has been in our house, because our daughter is off yeast and dairy as well as gluten.

  10. Lorna January 14, 2014 at 10:45 pm #

    Thanks for your input Jeanine. My next move is to try both the bread bowl and the millet sandwich bread in the food processor…and yes mine has a dough blade.

    I’m just baking my second batch of”Better that Sliced Bread” GF Popovers from the gluten free easily website. ….to this point the best bread type thing I’ve tried. They are really great….have you tried them? Maybe you have your own Popover recipe. Since finding this recipe and your site I think there just may be hope! Thanks so much!

  11. Lorna January 15, 2014 at 11:09 pm #

    Shouldn’t it be 1 Tablespoon (as opposed to 1 teaspoon) of apple cider vinegar? I’m hoping I can make time tomorrow to give these a try in the food processor. Should be great with clam chowder!

    • Jeanine Friesen January 23, 2014 at 10:00 am #

      No, just 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar, Lorna.

  12. Marcia January 16, 2014 at 3:56 pm #

    Thanks for all the suggestions for the milk replacement. Can’t wait to make these!

  13. Michelle @ My Gluten-free Kitchen January 18, 2014 at 9:36 pm #

    I can’t wait to make these! These would be so good with chowder in them!!

    • Jeanine Friesen January 23, 2014 at 9:59 am #

      Oh, perfect for chowder, Michelle! Mmm… now I want a nice, creamy soup, and it’s only 10 a.m. :)

  14. Jacqui January 23, 2014 at 9:54 am #

    These look absolutely amazing! We just made potato soup and I commented on how awesome it would be if I could find a recipe to make GF bread bowls…what fabulous timing because here it is!!
    I do have a question though – I’m intolerant to both bakers and brewers yeast so is there anything I can substitute for the yeast and still get the bread to rise?
    Thank you!

  15. HEKS February 28, 2014 at 5:07 am #

    The sides cracked turning these into almost a figure 8, any suggestions for my second attempt??

    • Jeanine May 2, 2014 at 7:23 am #

      That’s really odd HEKS – did your dough maybe need a little more liquid?

  16. Sherrill April 18, 2014 at 1:50 pm #

    Can this be made into one large bowl for a spinach dip? Or would it not work as well as dividing it up into four smaller bowls? I’m assuming you’d have to increase the baking time to do just one big one?

    • Jeanine May 2, 2014 at 7:23 am #

      I’ve never tried it, Sherrill, sorry. It’s on the long list of “things to do” though. :)

  17. check this site out now May 29, 2014 at 1:14 am #

    I noticed that someone suggested Coconut Milk Powder as a substitute. I will caution you to read the ingredient label as it may actually NOT be dairy free. I was looking for a dairy free milk powder substitute prior to Christmas this year.


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