How Does a Gluten-Free Bread Machine Work?

Bread-making machines designed for gluten-free bread let the dough rise once instead of twice, and they mix the ingredients thoroughly and knead the dough less than is done for bread containing gluten. Gluten-free dough needs more thorough mixing than gluten dough, which is thicker and more elastic.

Gluten bread gets tougher and more elastic with kneading. Because of this, gluten bread machines let the dough rise twice, then knead the dough again. Gluten-free dough does not need to rise twice and it doesn't respond well to over-kneading. If gluten-free bread rises too much, it may collapse after baking.

Features to look for in a gluten-free bread machine include a gluten-free setting, a pause feature to allow the baker to remove a paddle after the mixing phase, and a bake-only mode. This feature allows bakers to stop the kneading and bake the gluten-free bread, avoiding the risk of the over-kneading. A rapid-bake mode is suitable for gluten-free bread because it reduces the rise time needed. Double paddles are also suitable for gluten-free bread machines because they ensure the ingredients are mixed thoroughly.

Gluten is a protein found in many grains used to make bread, especially wheat. It binds the ingredients and gives the dough its stretchy quality.