Living without gluten, casein, soy, eggs and peanuts. Living with ASD and ADHD. Life is good!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Xanthan Gum vs. Guar Gum

I've finally put my money where my mouth is and have been using guar gum instead of xanthan gum in my baked goods for the past few weeks. Xanthan gum is corn-derived where guar gum is not. I can see no difference between the two in my baked goods. I've been using 50% more guar gum as xanthan gum, so if a recipe calls for 1 tsp. xanthan gum, I use 1 1/2 tsp. guar gum and everything has been turning out great. The one exception is yeast bread - for some reason guar gum is not working in my sandwich bread - I think it is inhibiting yeast growth.

Guar gum is much less expensive than xanthan gum, so even if I was not concerned about xanthan gum being corn-derived, I'd use it anyway because it's half as expensive, maybe less. Which really counts for something in my household these days! I am still using xanthan gum in sandwich bread but in everything else I'm using guar gum, and over time this will help keep the cost of gluten free baking a little more manageable - every little bit of savings counts!

Check out the comment from Niksmom (thanks for the heads-up, Niksmom). I have stated elsewhere that some people may have problems with guar gum because of the high fiber, but I had forgotten that legume sensitive individuals may need to avoid guar gum as it is bean-derived. For people who need to avoid legumes, see this helpful list of legumes here.


Niksmom said...

The potential trouble with guar is if one is allergic/sensitive to legumes. Guar is a bean. Can cause GI troubles as well as slow rate of absorption of certain medications used by diabetics (metformin). Of course, I don't know how much you would have to ingest to interfere with that.

00goddess said...

I'm trying to avoid xanthan gum in order to avoid GMOs, so I am using guar gum. Like you I find that it just does not work as well in yeast breads, so when I make a yeast bread, I add psyllium. I found this page looking for info on guar and unfortunately, both of the links in your post go to "not found" pages.

I also happen to be someone who takes metformin, and I have never ever heard or read anything about legumes slowing the rate of metformin absorption. I can't imagine why they would.

Erin said...

I will have to try psyllium. Thanks for letting me know about the links, I'll take care of that!