The slightly crisp outside and tender inside of gluten free focaccia bread is hard to beat. This recipe comes together easily but tastes like you spent all day lovingly preparing this amazing bread.
This focaccia bread recipe was originally published in 2019. Since then I have re-worked the recipe to now be dairy free, so enter this vegan focaccia bread. It's as delicious as the original and even easier to make. In fact, if you keep the herb-infused olive oil dipping sauce on hand, it can be prepped in about 15 minutes. You'll want to keep this quick and delicious bread recipe handy to pair with virtually any meal.
What is focaccia bread?
One of my favorite breads to make is this gluten free focaccia bread. What is focaccia, you ask? It's a wonderful type of unleavened Italian bread. It has a distinct "dimpled" surface, which is made by gently pressing down on the dough before it gets baked. Then it's drizzled with olive oil and bakes at a high temperature. If you haven't had it before, you really need to try it, and let me know what you think!
Here are a few more reasons you'll love this focaccia bread:
- This bread requires just 15 minutes of prep time.
- You only need 8 ingredients for the focaccia bread. And it's xanthan gum free!
- The olive oil dip complements the bread perfectly.
- You can make the oil dip days beforehand to save yourself time.
The best olive oil bread dip
The "icing on the cake" for this focaccia bread is definitely the olive oil dip. It only takes a minute to whip up, then you drizzle a little bit over the bread before it bakes. Then serve the bread with the rest of the oil to dip it to your heart's desire! This stuff takes the bread to the next level. Plus, the oil stays good for a while so you can use it on other things or just make more focaccia bread (wink).
For the olive oil dip, you'll need the following ingredients:
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Dairy free parmesan cheese
- Dried parsley
- Dried rosemary
- Dried Italian seasoning
- Red pepper flakes
Ingredients & substitutions
- Active dry yeast - Make sure you use active yeast, not instant.
- Maple syrup - The maple syrup can be substituted with honey.
- Whole psyllium husk - Make sure to use whole psyllium husk, not powder.
- Tapioca starch - Corn starch or potato starch can be used in place of tapioca starch.
- Sorghum flour - Buckwheat flour can replace the sorghum flour.
- Brown rice flour - The brown rice flour can be replaced with white rice flour.
- Salt - You can reduce or omit the salt if you're following a low salt diet.
Measurements for each ingredient, along with instructions for making the bread are in the recipe card below.
Note about rise time
When you get the dough made and let it rise, make sure to judge it by the way it looks, rather than how long it's been rising. Wait until it looks puffy and like it has risen 75%. This could take around 30 minutes, but keep an eye on it!
Gluten free focaccia step by step
Step 1: Combine 100 grams of water and maple syrup in a small bowl. Add the yeast, stir a few times, and set aside to proof.
Step 2: In a measuring cup, stir the whole psyllium husk and 275 grams of water together. Set aside.
Step 3: Add the tapioca starch, sorghum flour, brown rice flour, and salt to the bowl of a stand mixer. Stir together.
Step 4: Add the activated yeast and thickened psyllium husk to the dry mixture and mix on low for 30 seconds. Scrape the bowl.
Step 5: Turn the mixer to medium and mix for 3 minutes. Meanwhile, brush a 9" square pan with olive oil.
Step 6: Press the dough into the pan with a rubber spatula. Press into each corner.
Step 7: Set aside to rise until it has risen by 75% and looks puffy (about 30 minutes).
Step 8: To make the olive oil dip: combine all dip ingredients in a small bowl or dressing bottle. Stir or shake until well combined.
Step 9: Preheat the oven to 425F. After the dough has risen, use your fingertips to create dimples in the dough.
Step 10: Drizzle 3 tablespoons of the olive oil bread dip over the dough.
Baking & serving
Step 11: Bake at 425F for 33-35 minutes or until the bread registers 210F with a thermometer.
Step 12: Cool for a few minutes, then remove from the pan. Serve with the rest of the olive oil bread dip. Happy dipping!
Focaccia bread is best the same day it's made. But if you have pieces left over, store them in an air tight container for up to 1 day. You'll need to reheat them for about 30 seconds in the microwave for best results. Enjoy right after reheating.
💭Pro tips for making this bread
1. Weigh the ingredients
You'll notice that most of the focaccia ingredients are listed with a weight in grams. This is the ideal way to measure ingredients in baking because it's the most accurate. So grab a digital scale along with all the ingredients!
2. Pat the dough with an oiled rubber spatula
If you find the dough is a little too sticky and it's hard to press into the pan, put some olive oil on your rubber spatula! Then you'll be able to press it into those corners.
3. Keep an eye on the rising dough
Although I approximate the rise time to be 30 minutes, I urge you to judge the rise time by how the dough looks. As long as it looks like it's risen 75% and has gotten puffy, it's all good!
4. Use high-quality olive oil
Focaccia bread relies heavily on olive oil. And high-quality olive oil is not just important, it’s essential. I use this extra virgin olive oil in this recipe and love the delicate yet full-bodied flavor.
5. Helpful equipment
Here are a few tools that will help you make this bread:
Gluten free focaccia FAQs
It's best enjoyed fresh, on the same day it's baked. I highly recommend serving it while it's fresh. Since everyone loves it, you may not even need to worry about having leftovers!
Yes! Simply defrost it in the microwave for 30 seconds to 1 minute when you're ready for it.
Cover it and keep it at room temperature for a week. Eat it with whatever you want or make more bread! 😉 Just make sure to put it in the fridge if you're keeping it past a week.
You'll be able to tell by the way it looks. It should rise by 75% and look puffy. I estimate it to take around 30 minutes but keep an eye on it!
Other bread recipes you may like!
How to Make Gluten Free Focaccia Bread in 90 Minutes
- 2 ½ teaspoons active dry yeast
- 100 grams water warmed to 100F, about ⅔ cup
- 20 grams maple syrup
- 12 grams whole psyllium husk about 2 Tablespoons
- 275 grams water 75F, about 1 cup + 3 Tablespoons
- 80 grams tapioca starch about ⅔ cup
- 120 grams sorghum flour about 1 cup
- 100 grams brown rice flour about ½ cup + 2 Tablespoons
- 1 teaspoon salt
For olive oil bread dip:
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ½ Tablespoons dairy free parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- ½ teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
- ⅛ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon pepper
- In a small bowl combine 100 grams of water and maple syrup. Add yeast and stir a couple times to mix. Set aside to proof.
- In a measuring cup, combine the whole psyllium husk and 275 grams of water. Stir until fully combined. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, add tapioca starch, sorghum flour, brown rice flour and salt. Stir to combine.
- Pour activated yeast and thickened psyllium husk into the stand mixer bowl and mix on low for 30 seconds. Stop the machine and scrape down the bowl.
- Turn the mixer to medium speed and mix for 3 minutes.
- Meanwhile, prepare a 9" square pan by brushing with olive oil.
- Press the mixed bater into the pan by using a rubber spatula. Press into each corner of the pan.
- Set bread aside to rise until the bread rises by 75% and looks puffy, about 30 minutes. Make the bread dip.
Olive oil bread dip
- In a small bowl or dressing bottle, combine the olive oil, parmesan cheese, parsley, rosemary, Italian seasoning, pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Stir or shake until well combined. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 425 F.
- After the bread has risen, use your fingertips to dimple the dough.
- Drizzle 3 Tablespoons of the olive oil bread dip over the dough.
- Bake for 33-35 minutes or until the bread registers 210F with an instant read thermometer.
- Cool for a few minutes and remove from the pan.
- Serve with the remaining olive olive dip.
- Active dry yeast was used in this recipe.
- Instead of the maple syrup, honey can be used.
- Make sure to use whole psyllium husk, not the powder.
- As a substitute for the tapioca starch, corn starch or potato starch may be used.
- As a substitute for the sorghum, buckwheat can be used.
- As a substitute for the brown rice flour, white rice flour can be used.
- If the dough is too sticky to pat in the pan, lightly oil the back of a rubber spatula.
- You'll likely have some olive oil dip left over - it will stay fresh for up to a week, covered on the counter.
- This focaccia is best enjoyed the same day it's made.
- Freeze any leftover bread and defrost in the microwave for 30 seconds - 1 minute.