Just because it’s gluten free….(and a recipe)

Just because it’s gluten free it doesn’t mean it’s good for you. Please take two minutes to see how much sugar has been added to your favourite gluten free cakes, breads and cereals and then make your informed decision about whether or not they should be part of a healthy diet.

Free sugars should make up no more than 5% of daily dietary energy intake. Free sugars are those added to food or those naturally present in honey, syrups and unsweetened fruit juices, but exclude lactose in milk and milk products. A little bit of sugar is fine especially if combined with great ingredients to make a delicious and nutritious energy snack. I’ve just been to Australia and they are mad about banana and coconut bread for breakfast, toasted with butter and served with fresh fruit. Here’s a recipe for coconut bread that I managed to persuade the manager of the local bakery to part with:

Coconut Bread

  • 2 eggs
  • 10fl oz (300ml) milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 2 ½ cups plain flour (can use gluten free)
  • 2 tsps baking powder
  • 2 tsps cinnamon
  • I cup of caster sugar (or xylitol if pre diabetic or aiming to control sugar)
  • 5oz (150g) shredded coconut
  • 2 ½ oz (75g) unsalted butter

Pre-heat oven to 180 C (350 F). Lightly whisk egg, milk and vanilla together.Sift flour, baking powder and cinnamon into a bowl, add sugar and coconut and stir to combine. Make a well in the bowl and gradually add in the egg mixture until just combined. Add melted butter and stir until mixture is just smooth, being careful not to overmix.

Pour into a greased, floured 21x10cm (8 ½ x4 in) loaf tin and bake in pre heated oven for an hour or until bread is cooked when tested with a skewer. Turn out after 5 minutes and cool on a wire rack. Serve toasted and buttered with fresh mango or lime marmalade.


Anna Pugh, Nutritionist, tel: 01234 409538

Categories: Nutrition.