Gluten Free Focaccia with Garlic and Rosemary

Published on Aug 07, 2023

  by   Kristina Stosek

1 reviews

Prep Time: 15 hands on time minutes Cook Time: 25 minutes Serves: 6 - 8
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An irresistibly aromatic and flavorful Italian gluten free focaccia bread infused with the enticing combination of garlic and rosemary. Focaccia, known for its fluffy texture and savory taste, has been a beloved staple in Italian cuisine for centuries. 

sliced focaccia infused with garlic and rosemary

This savory Italian bread goes exceptionally well with a variety of dishes such as Gluten Free Pasta Puttanesca or a delightful standalone treat dipped in olive oil and balsamic vinegar, or our favorite 30 Minute Gluten-Free Stovetop Lasagna.

In this recipe, we’ll show you how easy it is to create the best gluten-free focaccia infused with the pungent aroma of garlic and the earthy freshness of rosemary. 

Whether you’re hosting a dinner party, preparing a delicious appetizer, or simply looking for another bread to your repertoire, you should try this gluten-free Italian focaccia bread infused with garlic and rosemary recipe. 

Baking tips for the best Gluten Free Focaccia with Garlic and Rosemary.

focaccia dough in a bowl with dough hook

Why should you rest yeasted gluten free dough before shaping it?

Resting yeasted gluten-free dough before shaping is equally important as it is for regular yeasted dough, and it serves similar purposes. However, there are some specific reasons why resting gluten-free dough is crucial for achieving the best results:

Hydration and Absorption:

Gluten-free flours, such as rice flour, tapioca flour, or almond flour, have different water absorption rates than wheat flour. Resting the dough allows the flour to fully hydrate, ensuring a more consistent texture and preventing a gritty or dry crumb in the final product.

Starch Gelatinization:

During resting, the starches in gluten-free flours absorb moisture and undergo gelatinization. This process contributes to the dough’s structure and helps it hold its shape during rolling and baking.

Binding and Cohesion:

Gluten is responsible for the elasticity and binding properties of traditional wheat dough. In gluten-free dough, the proteins and fibers that provide binding and cohesion are usually absent. Resting allows time for the ingredients to interact and bond, improving the dough’s elasticity and making it easier to work with.

Reducing Grittiness:

Some gluten-free flours can have a slightly gritty texture, especially if not adequately hydrated. Resting the dough helps mitigate this issue by allowing the flour to absorb moisture and soften, resulting in a smoother crumb.

Avoiding Dough Shrinkage:

Resting gluten-free dough can prevent excessive dough shrinkage during rolling and shaping. This is especially important as the gluten free dough tends to be more delicate and can lose shape easily without sufficient resting time.

In conclusion, resting yeasted gluten-free dough is essential to optimize texture, flavor, and workability. 

sliced gluten free focaccia bread

traditional yeast vs. rapid-rise yeast

Traditional yeast and rapid-rise yeast are two different types of baker’s yeast used to leaven bread and other baked goods. While they share some similarities, there are key differences between the two:

Traditional Yeast: Also known as active dry yeast, traditional yeast is composed of live yeast cells that have been dried and become dormant. It has larger granules and must be dissolved in warm water before use.

Rapid-Rise Yeast: Also called instant or quick-rise yeast, rapid-rise yeast is milled into smaller granules and contains more active yeast cells. It does not require pre-dissolving and can be mixed directly with dry ingredients.

Activation Time:

Traditional Yeast: As traditional yeast is dormant, it requires time to activate and “proof” before using it in the recipe. This involves dissolving the yeast in warm water with a pinch of sugar and waiting for it to become frothy (usually around 5-10 minutes).

Rapid-Rise Yeast: Rapid-rise yeast does not need proofing and can be directly mixed into the dry ingredients, saving time in the preparation process.

Rising Time:

Traditional Yeast: Generally, recipes using traditional yeast have longer rising times. The dough requires more time to ferment and develop flavor fully.

Rapid-Rise Yeast: This yeast accelerates the rising process. The dough usually rises faster, cutting down the overall preparation time.

Temperature Sensitivity:

Traditional Yeast: Traditional yeast is more sensitive to temperature fluctuations, and the water used for proofing should be at the ideal temperature of around 105-110°F. If the water is too hot, it can kill the yeast, and if it’s too cold, the yeast may not activate properly.

Rapid-Rise Yeast: Rapid-rise yeast is more forgiving when it comes to temperature. While it prefers warmer liquids, 120-130°F. It can tolerate a broader range of temperatures without compromising its effectiveness.


Traditional Yeast: Traditional yeast is suitable for a wide range of bread and dough recipes that involve longer fermentation times and desire more developed flavors.

Rapid-Rise Yeast: Rapid-rise yeast is best for recipes that require quick results, such as pizza dough, focaccia, or simple bread recipes, as it allows for shorter rising times.

In summary, traditional and rapid-rise yeast serve their purposes in bread baking, and the choice between them depends on the specific recipe, desired rising time, and convenience. Traditional yeast is more traditional and suits recipes that benefit from longer fermentation, while rapid-rise yeast is convenient for quick baking projects and recipes with shorter rising times.

What is the best temperature to proof yeasted dough?

The best temperature to proof yeast dough is generally between 75°F and 85°F. This temperature range provides an ideal yeast activation and fermentation environment, allowing the dough to rise effectively.

The yeast will be most active at this temperature range, consuming the sugars in the dough and producing carbon dioxide gas, which causes the dough to rise and expand. The yeast will also produce flavorful byproducts during fermentation, enhancing the taste of the final baked product.

To maintain the proper proofing temperature, you can follow these tips:

  • Use a Warm Place: Place the dough in a warm, draft-free area of your kitchen. You can use your turned-off oven (with the light on) or a microwave with a bowl of hot water to create a warm, humid environment.
  • Avoid Extreme Heat: Do not proof the dough in an environment that is too hot, as excessive heat can kill the yeast and hinder fermentation.
  • Adjust Proofing Time: If your room temperature is cooler, you may need to extend the proofing time slightly to allow the yeast to work properly.

Remember that proofing times can vary based on the type of yeast used, the specific recipe, and the desired flavor and texture. In some cases, a longer, slower proof at a lower temperature can enhance the flavor and improve the texture of the dough.

dimpled focaccia dough in a pan topped with oil, rosemary and garlic

Why do you dimple gluten free focaccia bread before baking?

Dimpling gluten-free focaccia bread before baking serves several purposes that contribute to the overall texture and appearance of the final product. While dimpling is a traditional technique used in regular wheat-based focaccia, it also benefits gluten-free versions. Here’s why dimpling gluten-free focaccia is recommended:

Even Rising: 

Gluten-free bread dough tends to be more delicate and less elastic than dough made with wheat flour, which can result in an uneven rise during baking. Dimpling the dough before baking helps create evenly distributed pockets or dimples, allowing the dough to rise more uniformly. As the dough expands in the oven, the dimples maintain shape, providing a visually appealing texture and baking evenly.

Prevent Bubbling: 

Dimpling the dough helps release any trapped air or gas bubbles that may have formed during the mixing and rising. This is particularly important in gluten-free dough, as the absence of gluten can lead to more significant air pockets, which might disrupt the evenness of the crumb structure.

Texture and Crispness: 

Dimpling the dough creates shallow pockets on the surface. During baking, these pockets collect and hold olive oil, herbs, and other toppings added to the focaccia. As a result, the dimples become infused with flavors, adding a burst of taste to each bite. Additionally, the exposed edges of the dimples may crisp up slightly, providing a delightful contrast to the soft interior of the focaccia.

Aesthetic Appeal: 

The dimpled surface of focaccia is visually appealing and a distinguishing feature of this classic Italian bread. It gives the bread a rustic and homemade look, making it an inviting centerpiece for any table.

When dimpling gluten-free focaccia, handling the dough gently is essential to prevent deflating it completely. Pressing your fingertips into the dough softly will create the dimples without overworking the delicate structure. 

Additionally, you can drizzle a generous amount of olive oil over the dimples and sprinkle herbs, such as rosemary or thyme, to add flavor and visual appeal.

In conclusion, dimpling gluten-free focaccia before baking is a simple yet effective technique that helps ensure even rising, releases trapped air, infuse flavors and enhances the overall appearance of the bread. It’s a valuable step in creating a delicious and visually delightful gluten-free Italian focaccia.

rosemary and garlic infused olive oil in a bowl

Here are some popular flavors for focaccia bread:

Rosemary and Sea Salt: The classic flavor combination, where fresh rosemary leaves and coarse sea salt are sprinkled on top of the bread before baking.

Tomato and Basil: Sliced or cherry tomatoes, along with fresh basil leaves, add a burst of color and a Mediterranean flair.

Onion and Thyme: Caramelized onions and fragrant thyme create a delightful savory taste.

Black Olive: Pitted black olives give the focaccia a briny and tangy flavor.

Garlic and Parmesan: A garlic-infused olive oil drizzle and grated Parmesan cheese provide a savory and umami-rich experience.

slices of gluten free foaccia topped with fresh rosemary

Serving suggestions for Gluten Free Italian Focaccia Bread with Garlic and Rosemary:

As a Side Dish: Serve the focaccia as a side dish alongside your favorite Italian-inspired meals. It pairs exceptionally well with pasta dishes, lasagna, soups, and salads. 

Dipping Bread: Slice the focaccia into pieces and serve it with extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar. The dimpled surface of the bread is perfect for soaking up the delicious oil and vinegar blend, making it a fantastic appetizer or pre-meal snack.

Sandwiches: Use slices of focaccia to create delicious gluten-free sandwiches. Fill it with your favorite ingredients, such as roasted vegetables, grilled chicken, fresh mozzarella, and pesto, for a satisfying and flavorful sandwich experience.

Bruschetta: Toasted focaccia makes an excellent base for bruschetta toppings. Top the bread slices with diced tomatoes, garlic, basil, and a drizzle of balsamic glaze for a refreshing and vibrant appetizer.

Antipasto Platter: Cut the focaccia into bite-sized pieces and include them on an antipasto platter with an assortment of cured meats, olives, cheeses, and roasted vegetables. It’s a perfect addition to any party or gathering.

Focaccia Pizza: Transform the focaccia into a gluten-free pizza crust by topping it with tomato sauce, cheese, vegetables, and your choice of toppings. Bake until the cheese is bubbly and the crust is golden brown for a delicious gluten-free pizza experience.

Snacking on its Own: Enjoy the focaccia as a flavorful and savory snack. It’s perfect for dipping into hummus, guacamole, or your favorite dip.

Store any leftover focaccia in an airtight container to keep it fresh and retain its texture. Reheat the bread in the oven or toaster for a few minutes to enjoy it warm whenever desired.

stacked pieces of Italian focaccia bread

No matter how you serve it, Gluten-Free Italian Focaccia Bread with Garlic and Rosemary is a delightful treat that brings the flavors of Italy to your table and allows everyone, regardless of dietary restrictions, to enjoy the goodness of freshly baked focaccia.

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