Count on these gluten free, paleo and keto burger buns (with actual yeast!) to be pillowy-soft, absolutely delicious and with a killer crumb. And, per usual, not-eggy at all!
Gluten Free, Paleo & Keto Burger Buns 🍔
These low carb buns are the off-spring of my beloved (soft ‘n fluffy!) sandwich bread. A truly delicious grain free bread in its own right (just read the reviews on that recipe!), and probably the closest recipe to an actual yeast bread on the site.
Though it does have a bit more ingredients, and you can easily whip my keto bagels as buns too (I know many of you do!). They’re a bit quicker, and also a good one if you can’t have flaxseed.
Still, these buns are my favorite. They keep very well at room temp for 4 days and freeze beautifully (think double batches, stashed away for a rainy day). Oh, and you might also be surprised how good this bread is even without toasting.
Making these paleo and keto burger buns is incredibly simple really. But, like with any yeasted bread, it does require you take care of a few details to ensure the best possible outcome.
The nice thing about these buns too, is that they didn’t fall at all post bake for me (hurray!). They’re size vs a sandwich loaf clearly does help with the lack of structure of grain-free flours.
The yeast in these low carb and keto burger buns ensures a wonderful texture and taste. And note that you won’t get that gummy and wet texture here of most low carb breads. Plus, as mentioned, we’re baking at over 7,000 feet (Mexico City here!!), so if we can make this keto sandwich bread work so can you.
- Weigh your ingredients. This will forever be a staple recommendation for any sort of gluten free baking here at gnom-gnom. As aside from leading to less dirty dishes, it will ensure consistent results time and time again. Remember that gluten free (and particularly keto) baking is notoriously finicky, and measuring by cups is anything but accurate. And if you don’t own a baking scale, measure with cups by dropping the ingredients onto them rather than scooping them out (which often leads to overpacking).
- Ingredients at room temperature. Self explanatory really, but incredibly important (particularly for the eggs). If you add cold eggs to the mix your bread simply won’t rise much (if at all).
- Proof the yeast. This involves mixing dry active yeast with water that’s just warm to touch (between 105-110°F to be precise) and maple syrup or honey for 7 minutes until foamy. And before you scream sugar (!!) remember that the yeast will feed on such sugar to emit carbon dioxide, so it doesn’t affect the carb count. And yes, this is a scientific fact.
- Avoid abrupt temperature changes and air drafts. Like with any yeast bread, you need to cuddle your dough. Make sure it’s able to rest undisturbed in a warm space.
- Baking at high altitude? Yup, so am I (Paola here!!). I’ve tried quite a few combinations, and the one modification I will suggest is to increase your oven temperature by 25°F. You may also need to decrease the baking time by 5 minutes (I baked the bread for 45 mins), but that may change from oven to oven.
Yup! These low carb burger buns are suuuper sturdy (i.e. they can handle outrageous burgers!).
The Ingredients & Possible Subs
The buns do have quite a few ingredients, but you’ll find that most are staple paleo and keto pantry ingredients. In the list below you’ll find details on several ingredients and possible subs. But if possible, please do try and make this recipe without any subs. As out of the 18 permutations we tried, this one really was terrific and the absolute best.
Almond flour. You truly need a super finely ground almond flour here, as if you use meal your bread will turn out dense and oily. Super fine almond flour brands include Anthony’s , WellBees and Bob’s.
Now if paleo, or in keto maintenance, you can lighten up the bread even more by substituting part of the almond flour (1/4-1/2 cup) with arrowroot flour.
Flaxseed meal. You’ll want to use golden flaxseed meal (we use Bob’s), and regrind the flakes in your (very dry!) bullet or blender until finely powdered. Great way to avoid slimy bread. You can technically substitute the flaxseed meal with psyllium husk powder, but we prefer the crumb much more with the flax.
Psyllium husk powder. Same as with your flaxseed meal, you’ll always want to regrind your psyllium husk. We always favor NOW brand as it doesn’t turn bread purple. You can substitute it with more flax, but your bread may lose some elasticity and rise.
Whey protein isolate. This one is an absolute must, as it will ensure your bread doesn’t collapse post-bake. Keep in mind that this ingredient varies tremendously from brand to brand, and we’ve only tried (and are super happy!) with Isopure’s Zero Carb Unflavored.
(Pillowy-Soft!) Gluten Free, Paleo & Keto Burger Buns
For the paleo & keto burger buns
- 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 2 teaspoons maple syrup or honey, to feed the yeast (pssst! no sugar will remain post bake)*
- 120 ml water lukewarm between 105-110°F
- 168 g almond flour **
- 83 g golden flaxseed meal finely ground
- 15 g whey protein isolate
- 18 g psyllium husk finely ground
- 2 teaspoons xanthan gum or 4 teaspoons ground flaxseed meal**
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 egg at room temperature
- 110 g egg whites about 3, at room temperature
- 56 g grass-fed butter or ghee, melted and cooled
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 58 g sour cream or coconut cream + 2 tsp apple cider vinegar, at room temp
For the paleo & keto burger buns
- See recipe video for guidance on keto yeast breads. And check out the post for deets, tips and possible subs!
- Line a baking tray with a baking mat or parchment paper. Set aside.
- Add yeast and maple syrup (to feed the yeast, see notes) to a large bowl. Heat up water to 105-110°F, and if you don't have a thermometer it should only feel lightly warm to touch. Pour water over yeast mixture, cover bowl with a kitchen towel and allow to rest for 7 minutes. The mixture should be bubbly, if it isn't start again (too cold water won't activate the yeast and too hot will kill it).
- Mix your flours while the yeast is proofing. Add almond flour, flaxseed meal, whey protein powder, psyllium husk, xanthan gum, baking powder, salt, cream of tartar and ginger to a medium bowl and whisk until thoroughly mixed. Set aside.
- Once your yeast is proofed, add in the egg, egg whites, lightly cooled melted butter (you don't want to scramble the eggs or kill the yeast!) and vinegar. Mix with an electric mixer for a couple minutes until light and frothy. Add the flour mixture in two batches, alternating with the sour cream, and mixing until thoroughly incorporated. You want to mix thoroughly and quickly to activate the xanthan gum, though the dough will become thick as the flours absorb the moisture.
- Divide dough into 6-8, shaping them into rounds using lightly wet hands. Cover with lightly oiled cling film (saran wrap), cover with a kitchen towel and place in a warm draft-free space for 40-60 minutes until the buns have substantially increased in size (see post for pics!). How long it takes depends on your altitude, temperature and humidity- so keep an eye out for it every 15 minutes or so. And keep in mind that you do need a bit extra warmth than traditional gluten doughs (I like placing the tray on top of my oven!).
- Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C while the dough is proofing. And if you're baking at high altitude, you'll want to bake it at 375°F/190°C.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes until deep golden, covering with a lose foil dome at minute 10-15 (just as it begins to brown). Just be sure that the foil isn't resting directly on the buns.
- Allow to cool completely for best texture, but you can get away with waiting just 15-20 mins for fresh warm buns!
- Keep stored in an airtight container (or tightly wrapped in cling film) at room temperature for 4-5 days, giving it a light toast before serving. Though you'll find that this keto bread is surprisingly good even without toasting!