Ask A Sacramento Chef: Gluten-Free Thanksgiving Recipes

November 13, 2013 4:00 AM

Gluten is a protein found in wheat. Excluding it from the diet can be difficult at first but is ultimately simple. Thinking creatively about food is the best way to continue enjoying what you eat. These Sacramento chefs have offered up a few recipes to get the creative gluten-free juices flowing.

baagan Ask A Sacramento Chef: Gluten Free Thanksgiving Recipes
910 Pleasant Grove Blvd., Suite 160
Roseville, CA 95678
(916) 771-2117

Baagan is a vegan restaurant dedicated to healthy, fresh, organic cuisine comprised mostly of local and seasonal ingredients. Most of the food served is gluten-free, dairy free and refined sugar free. Executive Chef Angelique Miller is dedicated not only to the healthfulness of the food she serves, but to its unique and pleasing flavor. For Thanksgiving this year, Miller suggests a coconut chile brown rice, which she describes as “nutty with a touch of sweet and heat, this rice dish is is far more fun than plain old white rice.”

Coconut Chile Brown Rice

  • 2 cups dry brown basmati rice
  • 2/3 cup coconut, dry grated/dessicated
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
  • 3 and 1/2 cups water

Stir all ingredients together in a rice cooker and cook until water has been absorbed. The finished texture should be soft but not gooey and easily separated with a fork.

Related: Best Sacramento Restaurants Open On Thanksgiving



Selland’s Market Cafe
5340 H St.
Sacramento, CA 95819
(916) 736-3333 

Selland’s Market Cafe is dedicated to providing “real, honest, homemade food… using local, sustainable and organic produce and hormone-free meats.” Besides offering a brunch and cafe menu, Selland’s also offers a gluten-free menu and a vegetarian menu. If you’d rather not cook this Thanksgiving, Selland’s is delighted to prepare and cater your holiday meal. If you’d rather make your very own incredible, gluten-free Thanksgiving dinner, Chef Jeremy suggests this simple and elegant side dish.

Roasted Butternut Squash with Brown Butter and Fried Sage

  • 1-2 large butternut squash
  • 4 tablespoons butter, in thin slices
  • fresh sage leaves
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • a deep fat thermometer

First, fry the sage. Put the vegetable oil into a deep pan and heat oil until it is 365° F. Drop separated sage leaves into oil and let fry for approximately 5 seconds. Carefully remove with a slotted spoon and let cool on a paper towel. Cut squash in half lengthwise and de-seed. Roast on a baking sheet, face up, for about 25 minutes at 400º F or until tender. The squash flesh will scoop out easily or can be cubed and served.

Prepare the brown butter. Brown butter must be used immediately so don’t make it until it’s time to serve the squash. Heat a sauce pan on medium and add the butter. Stir continuously so the butter doesn’t burn. As it heats up, the butter will get small brown flecks. This adds the nutty flavor. Once brown and before black, remove from heat and put in a cool container to stop the butter from cooking further. Pour butter on cubed squash, sprinkle fried sage on top and serve.

the plum Ask A Sacramento Chef: Gluten Free Thanksgiving Recipes

Plum Cafe
2315 K St.
Sacramento, CA 95816
(916) 706-3302

The Plum Cafe in Sacramento is a mecca of non-traditional food excellence and “a celebration of lovingly prepared plant-based foods.” For Thanksgiving, the chef at Plum Cafe suggested a sweet potato mash. This recipe is ultra simple and the finished result is unexpected elegance.

Sweet Potato Mash

  • 12 sweet potatoes
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 1 cup of milk (can be omitted, if desired)
  • brown sugar or garlic

Boil cubed/peeled sweet potatoes until tender, about 20 minutes. Mash the sweet potatoes with a fork first and then mix in butter and milk with a hand mixer. For a sweet dish, combine with some brown sugar and shaved or slivered almonds. For a more savory dish, combine with a few cloves of roasted garlic.

Related: Best Pumpkin Treats In Sacramento

Laurel Hanson is a freelance writer uncovering Sacramento’s healthy food secrets in local restaurants, locavore havens, and even local foraging. Her work can be found on