Create your own texture with gums and starches
- You can add starches or gums to baked goods to thicken, stabilize, and extend shelf life. Gums and starches also act as emulsifiers to unify oil and water.
- Gums add the stretch that gluten brings to breads and other baked goods. Be aware, however, that some celiac patients and those with gluten intolerance cannot digest gums.
- Xanthan is a fermented corn-based product ground into a fine powder. It is both a stabilizer and a thickener. Don’t use too much xanthan or your baked goods will become slimy. Xanthan is also somewhat expensive.
- Guar gum is the milled seeds of a beanlike plant named guaran. Guar gum is similar to xanthan and is both a stabilizer and thickener. It is high in fiber and can cause stomach issues. Use only a small amount of guar or your baked goods will become heavy and usable.
- Starches are flours that are used as thickening agents. The gluten-free starches are corn, potato, tapioca, and arrowroot. They have different properties and each one takes a different amount of time to thicken. They also add different tastes to baked goods.