OK, I will keep updating this post as I am still experimenting.
I found numerous articles on the web showing ways to make a loaf of bread from pancake mix in a rice cooker (here is one). Some articles said that it was a piece of cake (pardon the pun), while others claimed that the product was unusable. None of the articles I found mentioned the type of rice cooker I had (Zojirushi Neuro Fuzzy) or had any advise on making the recipe gluten free. I can tell you now that I have had good success, and to help anyone else out there here is a running log of my observations.
- So far I have used the porridge setting on everything I have tried. I have not tried other settings, but probably will later.
- Only make a single batch. The cooker will not get the center done on a double batch
- I let the rice cooker run to the end of the cycle and there has been no problem with having to restart or having the loaf burn.
- For some unknown reason I always add the quantity of oil called for in the waffle recipe, but use the ingredients from the pancake recipe.
- To extract the loaf I remove the rice cooker bowl from the machine and put a plate on top of the bowl. Then I invert the bowl and the loaf is unceremoniously dumped onto the plate. I’ve never had one crack or break as a result of this.
- Bob’s Red Mill pancake mix makes a good dark loaf that seems to have a texture and color similar to Soda Bread. I think with a little tweaking there is a good opportunity to make a reasonable facsimile of Irish Soda Bread that is Gluten free
- Gluten Free Bisquick makes a more moist slightly rubbery loaf, but it is still very much edible and will absorb syrup fairly readily. When you open the rice cooker the top of the loaf looks white and rubbery, but if you touch it, it is cooked through. I’ve let it sit for up to 10 minutes on keep warm and it does not burn the bottom.
- Hodgson Mill gluten free pancake mix holds a most dubious honor. It is the worst tasting mix I have ever encountered. It made a rubbery loaf that smelled and looked bad. I bought it because I needed mix that day and the store did not have Bob’s or Bisquick. Trust me it was not an acceptable substitute.
- Kodiak Cakes – gluten free frontier flapjack mix – these were very tasty, but came out very doughy. Also, these are oat based, if you have gluten issues you may also have issues with oats, so be careful.
- Pamela’s was pretty good, but you have to be careful with this one if you have tree nut allergies. They include almond flour in their mix.
- King Arthur gluten free pancake mix – This one was wonderful. The whole kitchen smelled like fresh baking. Taste was excellent. Note that the instructions on the box I had were for a double recipe (used the whole bag). I halved the recipe and it made a standard size rice cooker pancake. As noted above if I had made the full recipe it would have been mostly uncooked.
- Glutino – Gluten Free Pantry Instant Baking Mix. This one comes in a little single serving bottle. I do NOT recommend trying the bottle. I did and it did not mix and basically made sludge in the bottom that I gave up on trying to get dissolved into the batter. Can’t tell you how it tastes, and I have no plans to buy another one to try…
- Hungry jack funfetti gluten free pancakes. This mix tastes just like cake. I would probably like it more without the funfetti, but it wasn’t bad. The flavor of the cakes was great! I really liked it… That said I did not follow the instructions on mixing. It is an add water only mix, but the waffle instructions said to add egg and oil. So I decided to follow the base instructions that are used by most of the other mixes. I used 1.25 cups of the dry mix, one large egg, one cup of milk, and a couple of tablespoons of vegetable oil. The texture was as close to a super moist cake of anything I’ve eaten in the gluten free genre.
Trader Joe’s mixes are pretty darned good. The pumpkin mix was only available around October, but it was awesome! Once again I don’t follow the recipe on the box. I use a cup of mix, one egg, two table spoons of butter (of course it is better than vegetable oil), then a cup of milk. If the mix is thick I add more milk to thin it up… It seems to work on just about every mix I’ve used so far
I picked up a tiger brand Induction rice cooker to replace the Zojirushi. I’m still getting used to it. It seems to be more finicky than the Zojirushi. The only setting that consistantly makes good pancakes is “plain”. Of course like almost every other rice cooker out there, there is almost no definition of what the settings are, but I have not found a better one yet.
To rate the mixes I’ve used so far:
Best: Bisquick, King Arthur, Hungry Jack, Trader Joe’s Gluten Free, Trader Joe’s Gluten free Pumpkin
Great with exceptions: If you don’t have issues with oatmeal, Kodiak was very good. If you don’t have issues with tree nuts Pamela’s is very good.
Pretty good: Bob’s Red mill
Avoid: Glutino, Hogsdon Mill