What is Xanthan Gum?
Xanthan Gum is a natural hydrocolloid used commercially in foods as a thickening agent and stabilizer.
Use Xanthan Gum as an Emulsifier
When added to water, xanthan gum forms a gel. That gel helps keep ingredients emulsified and suspended so they look appetizing on the shelf. Think salad dressings with lots of herbs and spices.
Why Use Xanthan Gum in Gluten-Free Baking?
If only there was a convenient, easy-to-use ingredient that would create a more delicate texture in gluten-free treats. Gluten-free folks, meet Xanthan Gum! Xanthan gum does a great job of duplicating the elasticity of gluten in gluten-free flours. The result is muffins and cakes with perfect sponge and deliciously chewy pizza doughs.
How Much Xanthan Gum Do I Use in My Baking Recipes?
There are lots of great gluten-free flour options available, but not all of them contain Xanthan Gum. If you are creating your own recipe using gluten-free flour without Xanthan Gum, here is a quick measurement guide for ensuring you don’t end up baking tough bricks:
For yeasted breads and pizza doughs, add 1 tsp of Xanthan Gum per cup of gluten-free flour.
For cakes and muffin, add ½ tsp. per cup of gluten-free flour.
Xanthan gum also prevents ice crystals from forming in ice creams and provides a "fat feel" in low or no-fat dairy products. For best results, use 1/2 teaspoon per cup of liquid called for in recipe. Whip in a blender with liquid to prevent clumping.
Xanthan gum can also be used as an all-purpose thickener for gravies and sauces. Whisk together 1/4 tsp. to 1/2 tsp. of xanthan gum with 1 Tbsp. hot water, for every 1 cup of gravy or sauce.