Gluten-Free Sourdough English Muffins: put THAT on your fork and split it!

I promised to get busy developing some yeast recipes for the sourdough starter that I introduced a few months ago and thought English muffins would be a good first challenge. I’ve had a fair taste-test run with a variety of gluten-free English muffins; mostly the kind you buy frozen in the grocery store.

Deal-breaker #1: One muffin costs about the same amount as the ingredients to make them at home. Make your own batch!

Deal-breaker #2: Most all of them were shaped like English muffins, but when broken into, were no different than a lightened gluten-free white bread: soft and spongy with an even crumb, no nooks or crannies.

I may as well have taken a biscuit cutter to a loaf of bread and saved the money.

My mission was in front of me, provoked by repeated disappointments and a longing for a chewy muffin full of flavor and butter-trapping dimples.

I’m excited to share this recipe with you which, after many trials and adjustments, is more true to a traditional English muffin that I would have ever expected.

Quick! Get out your griddles!

Begin with these ingredients in your stand mixer’s bowl (pre-whisk the dry ingredients well before adding to the starter):

1 cup fed gluten-free sourdough starter

1/4 teaspoon instant yeast

3/4 cup Gluten-Free Multi-Purpose Flour

3/4 cup potato starch

1 1/4 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon xanthan gum

Beat ingredients until well-blended.

Add 1/2 to 3/4 cup water, 2 tablespoons oil…

…and 1 large egg.

Beat on high speed for 2 to 3 minutes to make a smooth, paste-like batter.

Cover the bowl and let the batter rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

It won’t change dramatically in size, but will become puffy.

Preheat your electric or stove-top griddle over medium heat, and lightly spray six English muffin rings with oil.

You can sprinkle the surface of the griddle inside the rings with cornmeal if desired, to help prevent sticking. I made mine without to make sure it wasn’t necessary, but I’ll be honest – it’s nice to have the added texture of the cornmeal. Typically semolina would be used for wheat-based English muffins.

When the griddle is hot, divide the batter among the rings and wait for the muffins’ bottoms to set before carefully removing the rings.

Cook for 7 to 10 minutes on the first side.

Then flip them over.

Allow them to cook through (another 7 to 10 minutes) on the other side, and have them reach an internal temperature of 210°F before removing them from the griddle.

Looking like a real English muffin already! Check out that height!

A moment of truth many moments too soon.  My impatient, impulsive self could not wait until they were cool to check for this happy sight of holes- something only a baker could understand, right?

As with any bread, giving ample time to cool is better for the quality of the crumb, allowing any residual steam to disperse evenly.

Do as I say and not as I do or your muffins could have a sad case of the gummies. Thankfully I was able to throw this one in the toaster while I let the others cool on a rack.

Please read, bake and review our recipe for Gluten-Free English Muffins.

Print just the recipe.

Amy Trage

Amy Trage is a native of Vermont where she spent much of her childhood skiing and training for the equestrian event circuit. With a strong desire to pursue food writing, Amy took her English degree from Saint Anselm College to the New England Culinary Institute ...


  1. sohn

    This looks really great! My son is allergic to egg, can you use a suitable egg replacer for this? If so, what? Thanks–happy Thanksgiving!!
    You could try an egg replacement such as Ener-G or you could try one of these alternatives. ~Amy

  2. jabillitti

    These turned out so great, I had to pace myself not to eat them all in a week! I’ve been feeding my starter every two weeks since inception two months ago and am getting ready to make another batch. Thanks for a great GF recipe.
    This is such great news. I’m really excited about this recipe and so happy that you found success with it too! Thank you for posting 🙂 ~Amy

  3. Hannah G

    I don’t have any gluten-free sourdough starter…can I make these as regular (non-sourdough) English muffins? How would you adjust the recipe? Thank you for all the great recipes and advice: KA flour is awesome!
    You could try substituting 1 cup of flour and 1/2 cup of water for the cup of starter in the recipe. ~Amy

  4. Excellent! Delicious! They turned out great. For the cup of starter, I used half a cup of fresh, ripe, sorghum-buckwheat-brown rice 115% hydration starter, and half a cup of “leftover starter” from the fridge (the part I remove when feeding the starter).

    I’d be curious to know what is the hydration % of your starter (by weight).

    Thanks for sharing.

    Our starter is 100% hydration as equal amounts of water and flour are used. Happy Baking! Irene@KAF

  5. PaulaG

    I finally got around to making my gluten free starter thanks to King Arthur Flour and made these muffins as one of my first recipes. It is very exciting to eat great tasting gluten free products. I used coconut oil and added in 1 tablespoon King Arthur’s Cake Enhancer. These are going to go fast. I will be sharing samples with a couple of gluten free friends. Thank you for a great reciipe.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      What a success! Thanks for sharing PaulaG. Keep the tips coming as we can all learn from one another! Elisabeth@KAF

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      This recipe was tried and tested in our test kitchen – it works best as published using the potato starch as an ingredient. Only your health care professional can advise about glycemic values and other nutritional concerns. Irene@KAF

  6. MelS

    I recently went gluten free. For 6 or more years I had a sour dough culture that performed beautifully every week or so to make bread. So it was with some doubt that I fired up a new GF culture following your directions. After it was ready I gave the muffins a try. They had a nice rise and I could taste the sour which far exceeded my expectations. The recipe works and it works well.
    I did not have any muffin rings but used egg rings and they worked perfectly. Thank you for your effort in proving this recipe.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Yes, the recipe may be doubled or tripled. I am not sure what pan you are referring to. We have the pie and burger bun pan and the round bun pan. This recipe should work better in the pie and burger pan but we have not tested it. Experiment! Elisabeth@KAF

  7. Phyllis Lista

    I make English Muffin Bread twice a year for my family and friends using my bread machine on the “dough” setting. My daughter is GF and I have tried several times to make GF bread for her. I tried using a 1:1 GF flour in my original recipe but the dough came out very crumbly and dry. Any suggestions on what I can do to alter the recipe so that I can make a GF bread for her?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      We’re not surprised that you’re having trouble, Phyllis, though we are sorry to hear it. Gluten-free yeasted baked goods are a whole different ball game from regular yeasted baked goods and don’t generally work well with simple substitutions — even those that work decently in other, non-yeasted baked goods. Rather than running potential endless experiments yourself, we’d recommend using designed-to-be gluten-free recipes for bread, like these from our site: Most gluten-free bread doughs are almost more like batter in consistency and need to be beaten at high speed, rather than kneaded. For this reason, you may have more success using a stand mixer than a bread machine (unless, of course, your bread machine has a specific gluten-free cycle). Hope this helps! Feel free to give our Baker’s Hotline a call at 855-371-BAKE if we can answer answer any additional questions. Mollie@KAF

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Wendy, the night before you’d like to bake, you can mix 4 ounces of Gluten-Free Flour and 4 ounces of water together with a very small pinch of yeast. Cover it loosely with plastic wrap and let it rest at room temperature. The next day, you can use this mixture (which should be slightly bubbly) in place of the starter. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

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