All about Books, Book review

Book Review: Gluten-free Baking Made Simple by Cherie Lyden

Today it’s my turn on the blog tour for Gluten-free Baking Made Easy by Cherie Lyden. I was attracted to this because it mentioned both gluten free and simple in the title. Becoming more of a gluten free household is tougher than I ever imagined and more expensive. There are many foods we miss so this seemed a great opportunity to explore some new recipes and hopefully find some we liked.

For me, cookbooks need to be simple. While some people are goddesses or gods in the kitchen I have the food version of the Midas touch. My only hope of appearing on the Great British Bake Off is on the Extra Slice when they show the disasters. With that in mind, here is my review.

Book Review: Gluten-free Baking Made Simple by Cherie Lyden

Gluten free baking made simple by Cherie Lyden. Bright green font over a photo of strawberry flan a large iced cake, tomato flan and cupcakes
Gluten Free Baking made simple by Cheri Lyden

Title: Gluten-free Baking Made Simple

Author: Cheri Lyden

Publisher: Murdoch books

Genre: Cookery, Gluten Free

Release date: 11th May 2023


The new go-to cookbook for gluten-free bakers, filling the void of long unanswered
cravings. Discover beautifully, accessible and simple recipes anyone can achieve at home!

Whether you’re coeliac, gluten intolerant or gluten-free by choice this is the perfect
companion. Enjoy 80-plus sweet and savoury recipes that Cherie has developed and cooked
over the years for her family, as well as at her renowned bakery. Each recipe includes the
tips and know-how that Cherie has mastered to achieve truly remarkable gluten-free results
at home. As well, she shares her best flour blends, pantry essentials and the secret to the
perfect crumb. Packed with mouthwatering bakes such as;

  • Hot-smoked salmon, Asparagus, Pea and Leek Quiche
  • Cinnamon Pull-Apart Scrolls
  • Roast Pumpkin, Parmesan and Thyme Scones
  • Pear and Hazelnut Chocolate Frangipane Tart
  • Baked Cheesecake with Honey Syrup and Gingerbread Crust
  • Raspberry, White Chocolate and Coconut Muffins
  • Decadent Dark Chocolate Brownies
    If you’re ready to give gluten-free baking a go, make it easy with these simply beautiful and
    approachable recipes where everything not only looks delicious but tastes delicious, too!

My Thoughts

Before I comment on the recipes and contents of this cookery book, I must commend the designer. With vibrant green sprayed edges it calls out to be lifted off a bookshelf, be opened and used.

My copy of Gluten free baking made simple with many post it notes marking recipes to try
Many bookmarked pages

When you browse a cookery book and the post-it notes come out to flag which recipes make your mouth water you know its one that will be used and experimented with. There were many more bookmarked than the markers in the photo show but these were the ones we thought we’d try first.

Not only were the recipes gluten free but they also showed dairy alternatives. This a huge tick from us as dairy intolerance is also a factor in our cooking now. The content and format is attractive and easy to read. With gluten free baking I’ve discovered there are more ingredients involved and steps but these are explained well. We decided to try the blueberry muffins, chocolate chunk cookies and buttermilk pancakes.

First of the muffins. The blueberry, apple and lemon muffins which looked so lovely in the book didn’t go to plan but that was on me. The recipe was simple to follow but I didn’t have enough apples -eek but continued anyway, and my blueberries defrosted so the mix became a not so attractive purple. There was a note of warning that this could happen but as I said I have that dreaded disaster cook gene. While mine didn’t rise and weren’t photogenic they tasted lovely. Much better than those we’ve sourced from the supermarkets so despite their appearance they were a win.

We will attempt them again with the correct weight of ingredients and with more concentration on the instructions. And nope the photos I took will not be shared.

There are many other muffin recipes to tempt and I really want to try the raspberry, white chocolate and coconut muffins once I’ve sourced shredded or coconut flakes.

Many muffins
Lots of muffins to try

Next was the chocolate chunk cookies. These were easier to make and a huge success in taste and appearance. Mine looked like cookies! These will be made again but will double the recipe so the dough can be frozen for go to treats. There are also options to vary the recipe with different chocolate and a double chocolate variety which sounds perfect.

Encouraged by the cookie success, next were the buttermilk pancakes, something I miss since the diet change. With clear instructions, this was also an easy recipe to whizz up. Without a photo in the book to show us what they were supposed to look like, we knew the first two out of the pan weren’t up to scratch but once my daughter took over the cooking more taste success happened. They weren’t as thick as expected but with practise and me out of the equation, I think they’d work.

Using light olive oil in the pan rather than butter seemed to have better results and tasted lovely especially with lemon curd.

With the ability to prepare the batter the night before these are a good option for breakfast. These will be eaten again

On our wish list to try Raspberry and Coconut slice

Would I recommend?

Yes! One thing I’ve learnt in our gluten free journey is nice food is hard to find but these are tasty and tempting. The book’s clear presentation and comprehensive instructions with tantalising ‘eat me’ photos and recipes encourage you to browse and experiment. There are so many recipes to choose from and the notes on the ingredients in the beginning were enlightening to a newbie who assumed chia seeds were decoration not a vital part of gluten free baking.

This book is a welcome addition to the bookshelf and will be used rather than gather dust so it’s a win.

Author Biography

Photo of Cheri Lyden White woman with dark wavy bobbed hair dressed in a white shirt. Sitting behind a table of cakes
Cheri Lyden

Cherie Lyden is the owner and founder of Wholegreen Bakery. Cherie opened Wholegreen in 2014 after she
and her youngest daughter were diagnosed with coeliac disease. She is a qualified nutritionist, innovator, serial entrepreneur, and writer in the space. Her greatest joy is finding ways to create deliciousness without the magic elasticity of gluten, and watching people with food intolerances discover a wonderful world of baked goods that they believed was closed to them.

Thank you Random Things Tours for the opportunity to read and try this book so I could give my honest review.


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