Holiday Desserts: Hold the Gluten


It is the most wonderful time of year . . . for desserts! Christmas cookies, pies, and other scrumptious treats are always a big part of this festive season. Here are some recipes and ideas that will include your gluten free friends in indulging their sweet tooth!

Cookie Recipes

The following cookie recipes are naturally gluten free and are an awesome addition to any cookie exchange!

Chocolate Puddle Cookies 

These yummy, chocolate cookies are made with just six ingredients and none of them happen to be flour! Why I love them: They are simple to make. Why your friends will love them: They are as light as a feather, but also chewy, chocolaty goodness at the same time. 

gluten free
Photo courtesy of 101 Cookbooks.

Milk Chocolate Florentine Cookies

These cookies are to die for and the smell that fills my kitchen as I make them is reminiscent of Otis Spunkmeyer chocolate chip cookies from my youth. Hello, middle school cafeteria! The linked recipe does contain flour, but I simply substitute with an all-purpose gluten free flour (Trader Joe’s is always in my pantry) and make sure my oats are certified gluten free. Tip: After you take the cookies out of the oven, put your tin foil lined sheets in the fridge for a few minutes and the cookies will peel right off the foil when cooled.gluten free

Favorite Mixes or Shortcuts

If you are short on time and wondering which gluten free mixes/shortcuts are worth your while, here are a few of my faves:

  • Trader Joe’s Gluten Free Pumpkin Bread and Muffin Mix – delish!
  • Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Brownie Mix – Tip: Melt chocolate chips and spread on the brownies as a layer of “frosting.”
  • Whole Foods Market Gluten Free Bakehouse Frozen Pie Crusts – Tip: Follow any traditional pie recipe such as pecan, pumpkin, or apple crisp and everyone will be asking for seconds.
  • Betty Crocker Gluten Free Cake Mix – I love the way the chocolate cupcakes come out with this mix. My kiddos love them just as much as the gluten filled ones!


Surprising your gluten free guests with an item just for them from a bakery might just be the sweetest thing ever! My sister did just that for me at Thanksgiving. Boy, did I swoon over the gluten-free cupcakes from Swoon Gluten Free Bakery in Ridgefield (there is one in Westport as well). The Hostess look-a-like chocolate cupcakes were my favorite! Some other note worthy bakeries that have gluten-free items are:

  • St. Moritz, Greenwich
  • By the Way Bakery, Greenwich
  • Trader Joe’s flourless chocolate cake and gluten free cupcakes – Danbury, Darien, Fairfield, Stamford, and Westport
  • Tasty Good Eats, Fairfield

Outside of Fairfield County:

  • Magnolia Bakery, NYC
  • Erin McKenna’s Bakery, NYC
  • Claire’s Corner Copia, New Haven
  • Uncle Pat’s Gluten Free Bakery, New Haven

Have any gluten free guests coming to dinner? What desserts do you like to make that are gluten free?

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Shannon has lived in Fairfield County, CT for most of her life and currently lives in Monroe. She has a daughter L (September, 2008) and a son B (May, 2012). Shannon balances being a wife and mom with working 186 days out of the year as a special education teacher. Thank goodness for vacations, summer break, and snow days! You can be sure that she fills those days with as many amazing activities and outings that she can think of to make up for the time that she is at work. In a distant life, way before babies, Shannon was an aspiring actress and musician. You can sometimes still find her leading sing-a-longs with her guitar at the kids’ playgroups or at her daughter’s school.


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