Italian gluten free Double Chocolate Biscotti (or Cantuccini). Baked twice for characteristic crunch. Perfect served with a mug of coffee or with mousse or ice cream. (Dairy free as well as gluten free).
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Gluten Free Double Chocolate Biscotti – updated and improved
My gluten free Double Chocolate Biscotti (also known as Cantuccini) have been updated… and more importantly IMPROVED! Why? Because while they have always been yummy, when I recently remade the recipe, I decided that it was too complicated and faffy. The list of ingredients was too long and if I couldn’t be bothered with it, I guess neither could you! It’s a recipe that has been on the blog since 2014, so it was due for a re-visit anyway!
What’s changed? Well, I’ve…
- Removed the coconut flour from the recipe (it was too ‘powdery’ and drying).
- Combined all the ‘listed’ flours into a single blend.
- Taken out the bicarbonate of soda (it wasn’t essential and I know some of you don’t like the taste).
- Reduced the amount of desiccated coconut (because it was, well… too gritty and ‘coconutty’).
- Ditched the extra milk and adjusted the texture via the other ingredients.
- Given the nuts and chocolate chips some variation, so that anything goes!
You could say it’s a whole new recipe, but it’s the one I’m sticking with. Either way, I hope you love my new improved gluten free Double Chocolate Biscotti as much as we do.
What are Biscotti (Cantuccini)?
Biscotti are also known as Cantuccini and have their origins in the Italian city of Prato in Tuscany). A popular, oblong-shaped biscuit (usually containing almond), they are dry and very crunchy. This gives them not only their distinctive texture, but also a long and worthy shelf-life (not that they ever last long enough to test that in my house!).
But perhaps more important, is the method by which they are baked. For it is this that gives them their unique crunch…Biscotti are ‘twice-baked’… First, they are baked as an uncut, sausage-shaped dough… After which they are cut, while still warm, into biscuit slices and baked (or dried out) in the oven again.
What ingredients are used to make gluten free Double Chocolate Biscotti?
Regardless of the baking method, the ingredients used to make my gluten free Double Chocolate Biscotti are all familiar things that you’ll find in your kitchen larder. To make them, you’ll need the following…
- A good gluten free flour blend – For the biscotti shared below I used my Gluten Free Alchemist Rice Free Blend B. (The recipe for this very versatile, healthy blend can be found at the bottom of my Gluten Free Flours and Flour Blending Page). The reason I used this blend was to avoid the nasty ‘grittiness’ that comes with using rice flour. However, the recipe should work well with other standard commercial gluten free blends.
- Ground almonds – It simply wouldn’t be biscotti without a little nuttiness.
- Xanthan Gum – to bind and hold the Cantuccini ingredients together. I tested the recipe without xanthan gum and (because of their characteristically dry texture, and need to cut them mid-bake), I found them to be crumblier than I wanted. If you can’t tolerate xanthan gum, you can try subbing with an alternative such as guar gum.
- Cocoa Powder – Make sure it’s unsweetened.
- Baking Powder – to add a little lightness and rise.
- Coconut Oil – instead of butter, which offers yummy, balanced coconut overtones.
- Sugar – A combination of caster (I used golden) and soft light brown. I found this combination gave the biscotti a measured sweetness and caramel depth.
- Eggs – to bake and bind.
- Desiccated Coconut – Just a little to give additional texture.
- Chocolate Chips – I used just dark to avoid over-sweetness. But it’s fine to use milk, white, dark or a combination of all three. Double Chocolate needs chips!
- Nuts – I’ve tested my Double Chocolate Biscotti with pistachio, hazelnut, almond and macadamia nuts. All are divine!
- Vanilla Extract and a pinch of salt – to enhance the flavour.
Are Gluten Free Double Chocolate Biscotti safe for people with Coeliac Disease?
Absolutely yes! My Double Chocolate Biscotti have been specifically developed to be safe for people with Coeliac Disease (Celiac). Providing they are made with a gluten free flour blend, there are no other gluten-containing ingredients. Of course, if being eaten by anyone with Coeliac or a wheat or gluten-linked health condition, it remains essential that all ingredient packs are double-checked for hidden gluten, ‘may contain’ warnings or cross contamination.
Double Chocolate Biscotti that are also dairy free
Because they are made using coconut oil instead of butter, my Double Chocolate Biscotti are also dairy free! Just make sure that the chocolate chips added are also safe for a dairy free diet.
Unfortunately, I have not tested them with an alternative to egg for a Vegan diet. And if I haven’t tested, I will never say it is definitely possible! As with many biscuit recipes however, there is no reason why subbing the egg for an egg-replacer won’t work well. I would avoid chia though, as it is likely to leave the biscotti with a slimy texture.
How to cook Biscotti – Two bakes to perfection
As with traditional Biscotti, my gluten free Double Chocolate Biscotti are baked twice. To get the best Biscotti texture and shape is not however difficult, providing you follow the recipe method.
Once the dough is made, it is…
- Rolled into a fat sausage shape that is then slightly flattened.
- Baked at a temperature of 170 C/325 F/Gas 3 for 30 minutes.
- Cooled slightly (for about 20 minutes).
- Carefully cut into diagonal biscotti-shaped slices, using a very sharp knife and a chopping board.
- Returned to the oven (slices placed flat on a baking sheet) and baked again at 150 C/300 F/Gas 2 for another 20 to 30 minutes until dry.
- It’s optional, but I often leave my chocolate biscotti in a cooling oven to make sure they dry out as much as possible. But then, I do that with most crunchy biscuits. Always have… always will.
How to serve Double Chocolate Biscotti
Cantuccini are often served in fancy cafés alongside a strong cup of coffee. But my Double Chocolate Biscotti are worthy of so much more… I recommend the following for delicious biscotti enjoyment (although I’m sure you can think of others options too!)…
- Definitely with a cup of coffee (whether in a café or anywhere else).
- …Or even with some super-decadent homemade Real Hot Chocolate.
- Alongside cold, creamy ice cream for contrasting crunch. Heads-up… Double Chocolate Biscotti are particularly perfect with my easy 10 minute Baileys No Churn Ice Cream.
- They also add equally scrumptious crunchiness when served with Real Chocolate Mousse or dairy free Chocolate Avocado Mousse.
- They can be crushed and used instead of granola in Granola Pots with Yoghurt.
- But the real beauty of my gluten free Double Chocolate Cantuccini, is that they are perfectly robust and transportable. Which also makes them ideal for taking on hikes and when travelling…
- And for lunch boxes, parties and gluten free picnics.
The recipe for gluten free Double Chocolate Biscotti
You’ll find the recipe for my perfectly crunchy, hand-dippingly moreish gluten free Double Chocolate Biscotti below. Shared as always, with my love.
Do let me know if you make them. You can do so by leaving a comment at the bottom or via social media. You can find me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or Pinterest. If you post any photos, do remember to tag me in (@glutenfreealchemist #glutenfreealchemist). Nothing makes me happier than knowing my kitchen adventures are being enjoyed around the world.
Other yummy Italian treats at Gluten Free Alchemist
Double Chocolate Biscotti (gluten free)
- chopping board
- sharp knife
- 245 g gluten free flour blend I use GFA Blend B (see NOTES)
- 45 g ground almonds (almond meal)
- ¾ tsp xanthan gum
- 40 g cocoa powder (unsweetened)
- 2 tsp baking powder gluten free – level teaspoons
- pinch fine sea salt
- 10 g desiccated coconut
- 150 g dark chocolate chips (dairy free as required) – or use milk/white/dark/combination
- 50 g hazelnuts/pistachios/macadamia/almond nuts crushed (or nuts of choice)
- 50 g coconut oil melted
- 120 g caster sugar (golden)
- 50 g soft light brown sugar
- 1½ tsp vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs At room temperature (UK large = Canadian ‘Extra Large’; Australian ‘Jumbo’; and US ‘Extra or Very Large’)
- Line two baking sheets with baking paper.
- Pre-heat the oven to 170 C/325 F/Gas 3.
- Weigh and mix together the flour, almonds, xanthan gum, cocoa, baking powder and salt, making sure any lumps are completely broken down. (TIP: Weigh into an airtight container and shake vigorously)
- Add the desiccated coconut, chocolate chips and crushed nuts and mix again.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat together the melted coconut oil with the sugars and vanilla extract, until well combined. It is best to use an electric whisk for this.
- Add the eggs one at a time and beat thoroughly until light and well-blended.
- Add the dry mixture, and using a firm wooden or silicone spoon, stir well until the ingredients come together to form a kneadable dough.
- Set the dough aside to hydrate for 10 mins.
- Once hydrated, knead the dough a little to bring together as a smooth ball.
- Divide the dough into three or four equal-sized smaller balls and roll each into a sausage shape, about 5 to 6 cm/2 inches in diameter.
- Place each dough 'sausage' on the baking trays, leaving space between them.
- Very slightly flatten the top of each sausage with the palm of a hand.
- Bake for 30 minutes and then remove and allow to cool for about 20 minutes.
- Once cool enough to just handle, place on a chopping board and cut into slices diagonally about 2 cm/½ inch thick. The dough will still be quite fragile at this stage, so cut carefully and use a very sharp knife.
- Turn the oven down to 150 C/300 F/Gas 2.
- Place each slice back on the lined baking sheets flat side down.
- Bake for a further 20 to 30 minutes until crisp. Turn over each slice half way through and keep an eye to ensure they do not burn. If concerned that they are starting to burn, turn the oven down a little more.
- Once happy that the biscotti are crisp and dry enough, remove from the oven and leave to cool completely on the tray.
© 2019-2022 Kate Dowse All Rights Reserved – Do not copy or re-publish this recipe or any part of this recipe on any other blog, on social media or in a publication without the express permission of Gluten Free Alchemist