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Gluten-Free Apple Struesel Bars

We have a bunch of apples sitting in our pantry just waiting until somebody around here had time to dig out some good gluten-free recipes for apples.

I came up with this recipe for gluten-free apple streusel bars after after remembering how my mother used to make them when I was young. She made them with whole wheat of course – which is impossible for us because of food allergies.

Since I’m a huge fan of apples and streusel, I consider this desert nearly perfect.

The crust recipe is adapted from Recreating Happiness’s awesome (like, I can’t even describe how awesome!) cinnamon roll recipe. The topping is a mixture of lots of cinnamon, streusel mix, apples, and icing.

So here it is: one of the many desserts that bring back memories of my childhood.


Gluten-Free Apple Streusel Bars

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  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 packet yeast
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown rice flour
  • 3/4 cup tapioca starch plus more for flouring your surface
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon guar gum
  • 2 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla


  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup rice flour
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 apples, peeled, cored and chopped


  1. Heat milk to lukewarm (110 degrees). Add butter yeast, and sugar. stir to disolve yeast.
  2. Combine flour, starch, baking soda, guar gum, baking powder, and salt in a large mixing bowl.
  3. After yeast has “proofed” mix in egg and olive oil. Pour into flour mixture and beat for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes.
  4. The mixture will thicken and become less sticky as you beat it.
  5. Spread into a greased and floured jelly roll pan.
  6. Combine first five ingredients and mix well. Stir in apples and sprinkle over prepared dough.
  7. Let dough rise for 15-20 minutes while oven preheats to 350.
  8. Bake for 10-15 minutes until the edges begin to brown.

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There are numerous icing options, some less healthy than others. Traditionally, we used a butter, milk, and powdered sugar icing, but lately, when icing is called for, I’ve been using turbinado, so this is my icing substitute:

  • 1 cup turbinado sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup water
  • dash of salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Combine ingredients in a saucepan and heat over medium heat, stirring until the icing begins to thicken.

Drizzle over cooled streusel bars, cut, and serve.


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