Never miss out! Because these Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs are super-easy to make and will give you the crispiest, crunchiest bread crumbs ever.
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Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs – ‘posh’ bread crumbs made easy
Introducing my Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs. Yes… Even in the world of bread crumbs, gluten avoiders can feel like they’re missing out. But guess what… These ‘posh’ sounding super-crunchy Panko are actually REALLY EASY to make. And right here… right now… I’m going to show you just how easy. Because if you want Gluten Free Panko… you can have them!
What are Panko Breadcrumbs?
Even if you have never had the joy of eating Gluten Free Panko, you have probably heard of Panko Breadcrumbs. But what exactly are they?
Essentially, they are super-crunchy, coarse breadcrumbs that originated in Asia and have been traditionally used for coating deep-fried foods such as Chicken Katsu. In recent years Panko Breadcrumbs have found their way increasingly into western cuisine and for good reason. Because Panko are created to have a drier, flakier and more granular consistency than standard bread crumbs. As a result, they absorb less oil and create a crunchier crumb that stays crispier for longer. And crunch when it comes to bread crumbs (gluten free or not) has to be good… right?
How are Panko Breadcrumbs different from standard bread crumbs?
Although the process for creating Panko is similar to making standard bread crumbs, there are a few key differences… But those differences matter a great deal in breadcrumb world.
- While standard bread crumbs can be made with any type of bread and their crusts, Panko breadcrumbs are always made with CRUSTLESS WHITE bread. It must be white and the crusts must be removed. They are fabulous made with my home baked Gluten Free White Bread.
- The breadcrumbs are larger, flakier and coarser in texture than standard crumbs.
- They may be created by the usual blending/grinding process (but to a less-fine degree)… Or they can be made by grating the bread using a cheese grater, or crumbling in the hand.
- Panko breadcrumbs are ALWAYS dried well by lightly baking.
- Because of their size, dryness and texture, they ultimately absorb less oil.
What is the best bread for making Gluten Free Panko?
Bearing in mind that to make Gluten Free Panko you will need to remove the crusts, it is better to use a larger, gluten free white loaf. This offers a greater interior volume than rolls, baguettes etc. Reserve stale rolls and smaller breads for making standard Gluten Free Bread Crumbs. Beyond that, any brand or homemade variety should work reasonably well.
Interestingly, since most gluten free white breads are loaded with starch (often in the form of rice flour or tapioca), they should be perfect Panko fodder… With the starch providing particularly good crunch to the dried breadcrumbs.
This is where I probably need to state a disclaimer however… Because I have only ever made Gluten Free Panko using homemade white bread… But there is no reason why any other white loaf won’t do the same job.
Why are the Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs in the photos darker than wheat versions?
The final colour of your dried Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs (before they are used in cooking), will very much depend on the gluten free flours that have been used to make the bread. Many commercial breads are made with ‘super-white’ flours (white rice, tapioca, corn and potato). This will inevitably translate into a final, lighter breadcrumb colour.
The Panko shown here however, used bread baked with a homemade flour blend and included some protein-rich flour and also psyllium husk. This resulted in a loaf with a more natural hue. But it also meant that when baking, the ‘whiteness’ became less defined. Regardless… These are Panko Breadcrumbs through and through!
What can I use Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs for?
You can use Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs to make pretty much anything that would normally use standard DRIED bread crumbs. Whether as a crispy topping for Mac and Cheese, Cauliflower Cheese, Roasted Stuffed Peppers, or gluten free Lasagne… Or as a breaded coating for Potato Croquettes, Courgette Fritters or Scotch Eggs… They are pretty much interchangeable… Just crunchier!
Are Gluten Free Panko safe for Coeliacs (Celiacs)?
Yes. Providing Panko Breadcrumbs are made with gluten free bread and are processed and cooked in a gluten-clean environment, they are safe for people with Coeliac Disease (Celiac) and other gluten or wheat avoidant conditions.
Can I make them dairy free and vegan?
Yes. To make Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs dairy free and vegan, just use white bread that is also free from dairy, egg and is completely plant-based.
Tips for making great Panko Breadcrumbs
- If grinding the Panko in a food processor/blender, the bread will need to be on the slightly drier side. However, to get the best textured Panko crumbs (slightly larger and coarser), I have found that bread which still holds some moisture produces a better crumb. Equally, grating the crumbs from a large chunk of bread gives a flakier result.
- When making Panko in a blender/processor, cut the bread into small-sized chunks, before processing. This is particularly important for Panko, as the greater moisture level in the bread is more likely to result in the bread clumping.
- For the same reason, grind bread chunks a few at a time. This will not only help avoid clumping, but also give much better control over the size and texture of the crumbs.
- When drying the Panko in the oven, use a large baking sheet and spread as thinly as possible… Turn them frequently to avoid browning and to ensure an even drying process.
- Cool the crumbs completely before transferring to an airtight container.
How to store Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs
Because they are very dry and have had the moisture removed in the oven, Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs are good to store in an airtight container or jar, at room temperature. They should last for at least three months (and probably far longer). Just be sure that the container is airtight and the crumbs are dry.
If you live in a region of high humidity, the crumbs may deteriorate more quickly. In this case, store in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer.
Ready to make Gluten Free Panko?
And there you have it. Super-easy Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs that can be made at home. No more missing out. Just super-crunchy coatings and crispy toppings! You can find the full recipe and instructions on the printable recipe card below.
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Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs – Homemade
- WHITE bread – crusts removed
To prepare the bread
- Remove all crusts from the bread being used and discard.
Blender/food processor method
- If blending/grinding the crumbs, the process will be helped by the surface being lightly dried before crumbing (but not to the same extent as when making standard breadcrumbs). For Panko, coarser crumbs are achieved with bread that still has a little moisture, but surface dryness will help prevent it clumping in the blender.
- Thus, if blending, cut the bread to be crumbed into slices or cubes and spread out on a tray.
- Leave uncovered at room temperature to dry naturally for a couple of hours. Turn the pieces occasionally to ensure the surfaces become touch dry.
- If not already cut, rip or slice the bread into smallish pieces (this will help them grind more easily).
- Transfer some of the bread pieces into a blender/grinder or food processor. It is better to grind small amounts in batches to ensure the bread breaks down easily and does not clump. It also gives better control over the size of the final crumb.
- PULSE the bread in the blender until it has been reduced to coarse crumbs.
- To grate the breadcrumbs, take a large chunk of white bread (no need to dry first) and grate into medium-coarse crumbs. Or alternatively, crumble the bread into crumbs with your fingers.
Oven-drying the breadcrumbs
- Pre-heat the oven to 130 C/250 F/Gas ½
- Base-line a large baking sheet with baking paper. (Baking paper is not essential, but will help in transferring the crumbs to storage once dried).
- Transfer the crumbed bread to the baking sheet and spread as thinly as possible.
- Place the crumbs in the oven and bake for about 15 to 18 minutes (or until the crumbs are fully dry and very crunchy). Stir frequently while they bake to ensure they dry evenly and do not over-colour.
- Cool completely on the baking tray. (Or leave to cool in the cooling oven – leaving the door ajar)
- Either use straight away, or transfer to an airtight jar or container. The baking paper is helpful to lift and direct the crumbs into the container as helpful.
- Store at room temperature for up to 3 months.NOTE: If you live in a region of high humidity, the crumbs may deteriorate more quickly. In this case, store in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer.
© 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