Gluten-Free Grain-Free Hamburger Buns

Click to enlarge (about 1" at edge and 1¼" at center)

Click to enlarge (about 1″ at edge and 1¼” at center)

I think these are my best low-carb hamburger buns yet!  They are very neutral in flavor and will definitely not drown out the lovely flavor of your charcoal-grilled burgers like many low-carb breads will.   They are so sturdy not a single crumb or piece fell off my burger, despite the heat of the meat patty.   But they achieve this sturdiness NOT at the price of “moist”.  They are not the slightest bit  “dry” or difficult to swallow.  Tasted like I was eating a REAL and very SOFT hamburger bun!

For those familiar with my Gluten-Free Grain Free Focaccia Bread recipe, these are made with a double batch of that batter, using all Jack cheese instead of a mixture of Jack and mozzarella.   These buns are not suitable for Atkins Induction, but are acceptable once you get to Phase 2 OWL nuts and seeds level.  They are also suitable for Ketogenic diets and Primal folks if dairy is occasionally consumed.  These buns are not suitable for a Paleo lifestyle.

You’ll find many more tasty gluten-free recipes in Jennifer Eloff’s latest cookbooks.  She has brought together some of the most talented low-carb cooks on the internet to bring you recipes you won’t want to miss.  Stop on over at the Facebook page for Low Carbing Among Friends and see what deliciousness awaits you in this 5-volume series of cookbooks.   You can have all these wonderful recipes and more by ordering yours at Amazon or here:

I am not paid for this promotion nor for the inclusion of my recipes in these books. I do so simply because they are GREAT recipes that any cook would be proud to add to their low-carb arsenal.

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge


½ c. almond flour

¼ c. golden flax meal

¼ c. plain whey protein

1 tsp. baking powder


Click to enlarge

3 T. cream cheese, softened

2 large eggs

1½ c. Monterey Jack cheese, shredded

1 tsp. cider vinegar

1 T. heavy cream

1 T. water

1 tsp. dry yeast dissolved in 1 T. warm water (optional, for flavor only)

Poppy or Sesame seeds (optional)

DIRECTIONS:  Preheat oven to 350º.  Soften cream cheese in medium mixing bowl in microwave.  Beat in the eggs, cream, water, vinegar, both cheeses and dissolved yeast (if using).  Measure and add in all the dry ingredients and stir well with a rubber spatula. Grease your metal molds well with oil.

I actually baked my buns in empty 13-oz cans (top and bottoms removed) that cooked chicken breast meat comes in.  Those cans are the perfect diameter and I have saved 8 of these over the past year so I would have them for this purpose.  They don’t appear to be lined, so I think it’s OK to bake in them.  After baking these, I located some mini cake pans that are just the right shape for making my hamburger buns in future.  A large round metal cookie cutter would work, too. Muffin-top pans would be OK I suppose, but may make smaller buns.  You can even free-hand shape them on a silicone or parchment lined cookie sheet.  But be warned, they will spread out as they cook and you may be unhappy with their final shape.

Using a ¼-cup measuring cup, scoop up ¼ c. batter and fill your molds, spreading the batter evenly with the back of a spoon.  Batter will be about ½” thick in the molds and there should be enough batter for 7 buns. Sprinkle on sesame or poppy seeds if desired.  Pop buns into a 350º oven and bake for about 20 minutes or until done to the touch in the center and lightly browned around the edges.  Cool a few minutes.  Slide knife around edges of buns to loosen and carefully remove them to a cooling rack or cutting board. When totally cool, slice them laterally and they are ready to use for your grilled burgers or other sandwiches.  Store any leftover in a plastic bag in your refrigerator.  Please note these buns boast some impressive nutritional stats below.

NUTRITIONAL INFO:   CORRECTED 4/13/14 Makes seven buns. Each 2-pc. hamburger bun contains: (doesn’t include sesame/poppy seeds)

197 calories

15.6 g  fat

3.50 g  carbs, 1.97 g  fiber, 1.53 g  NET CARBS

12.72 g  protein

288 mg sodium

76 mg potassium

11.28% RDA iron, 18% phosphorous, 10% riboflavin, 10% selenium, and 5% zinc

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49 comments on “Gluten-Free Grain-Free Hamburger Buns

  1. Jut tried these this weekend and I am Happy, happy. I just love these. I used a regular muffin pan and they were high, but now I am on the lookout for a muffin top pan.
    My celiac friend had a crab cake one and I had Hamburg.
    With summer coming I can join the crowd.
    Big thanks to you.

    • Delighted they were a hit! This bread batter has been a low-carb life changer for me. Ever so versatile baked in different shapes, loaves, donut pans. Have fun with it!

  2. I have a question/comment for you…
    I used MFP recipe importer, and I came up with a TOTALLY different set of Nutritional Facts. I have copied and listed it here for you. Do you know why?
    Servings 7.0
    Amount Per Serving
    Calories 219
    % Daily Value *
    Total Fat 17 g 27 %
    Saturated Fat 8 g 39 %
    Monounsaturated Fat 1 g
    Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
    Trans Fat 0 g
    Cholesterol 109 g 36 %
    Sodium 311 mg 13 %
    Potassium 53 mg 2 %
    Total Carbohydrate 4 g 1 %
    Dietary Fiber 2 g 8 %
    Sugars 1 g
    Protein 13 g 27 %
    Vitamin A 0 %
    Vitamin C 0 %
    Calcium 3 %
    Iron 31 %

    • Well, I can now Randi. I went back to Sept, 2013 in my recipe loads on Fitday and had loaded a double recipe as I chose to make a double batch of these for myself (14). But It looks like I loaded up the nutritional info for 14 (my double batch) and not the 7 buns the recipe actually makes. Can I blame it on a senior moment? :) Thanks for catching this error and bringing it to my attention. I have corrected the nutritional information now and it is much more in line with what you got on MFP.

  3. OK, Lisa. I have our answer. My recipe should read “use a ¼ c. measuring cup to scoop up the batter”……..Then you will get the indicated 7 buns. I made a batch of batter and scooped it out onto waxed paper using 1/2 c. measure and your are right, that only yields 4. Then I repeated that process again and got exactly 7 buns using 1/4 c. measuring cup level each time for 7 buns. Guess I’ve been unconsciously using the right size scoop cup each time I bake these and just hadn’t noticed the recipe read the larger cup size. Sorry about the typo and I have gone in and corrected the recipe now to read: “Scoop up the batter using a 1/4 c. measuring cup” I have published a recipe correction for all my email subscribers as well. Thanks so much for catching this error. Your cooked buns must have been REALLY BIG if you used 1/2 c. for them in all 3 batches. :) Again my apologies. You’re the very first person to notice/suspect an error on this recipe since it was originally published Sept 2013.

  4. Hi there, and first, thanks for ALL the wonderful low carb recipes!! I have now made these “buns” 3 times (twice as sandwich thins) and we love the taste! I successfully made the “buns” last night, using medium size ramekins as molds. Worked great. My question…is there any possibility that there is a “typo” above in the amount of batter this should make? No matter how many times I try, and how many “re-checks” I do of my process, I only come up with enough for 4 buns, using a 1/2 cup level scoop. I get the exact same nutritional macro’s that you got, but your numbers say “7 buns”. I have given up on wishing for lower calories, because that’s the price we pay for low carb and GOOD bread!! And so very filling! Love them, just curious if I’m missing something on the # of servings this yields. Thanks!! =0)

    • Hmmm. That is truly odd. I, too, have made this recipe many times. If you scroll down the page and look at the second thumbnail pic for the sheet bread recipe (exact same recipe as the HB buns) at this link: it made 7 buns for me, or 6 bagel/doughnut shapes, or 12 small muffins. Here are my only thoughts. Your ramekins may be perhaps a bit bigger than the molds I used. I just now went and measured the chicken cans I use and they are exactly 3 3/4″ in diameter. Another thought, you unconsciously may round the batter in the ½ c. scoop (or perhaps I am unconsciously dipping up a scant (not quite full) ½ c. of batter when I scoop mine up. I just can’t imagine what else might cause the variance. My curiosity is pricked and I may go bake a batch just to see if there is any typo in my recipe, but I really don’t think so. Check back this evening, Lisa.

  5. hmm – this is exactly the same as your gf sandwich bun recipe right below, just yields less, hence higher macros and calories?

    I’m going to try a half recipe. I have 4″ english muffin forms that should work OK, or a muffin top pan.

    One question: what is the best way to measure shredded cheese?

    I find it so hard to know whether to mush it down or just mound it, shredded jack comes out so fine it can really pack down – it would be easier to weigh I suppose, but I doubt it would be 8oz to the cup. Any tips?

  6. I looked really close this time, and sure enough that symbol is a printer….when I hovered on it, it said ‘click to share’ so I didn’t click and that’s what threw me off. Wish me luck, this will be my first time trying to bake low carb. By the way I love that option in the printing that allows you to click away information you don’t need. Saves ink, too! Thanks again

    • I don’t like that button either. But on WordPress, all my buttons went colorless recently (wish they’d quit messing with their software) and in order to get the others colored and more visible, THAT was the printer button in “the package”. To go back to the bigger, nicer “Print Friendly” button, all the others go black and white now. I just retested the only 3 choices yesterday, after your post indicated the print button isn’t so visible anymore, and is somewhat misleading. But it does PRINT, and not SHARE. :) Yes, I love the Print Friendly deletion features, too. When I print them for myself, I already know all the recipe intro information, so I don’t need to include that on my personal copies of recipes. Have a great day, Judy! :)

  7. Just tried these today. I want to say: Holy Smoke! On a blind test taste, no one would know it wasn’t regular type bread as it does taste JUST like bread! I absolutely love, love, love this recipe!!!!!!!! No egg, or fishy flax taste at all. The only thing is that mine didn’t rise, but the flavor didn’t suffer for that. THIS will be in my rotation for sure. Thank you. Bread! Woo!

    • I is the most neutral bread batter I’ve come up with to date. And man, have I ever tried a lot of other people’s recipes, as well as done a lot of experimenting on my own. This is the BEST for me, for sure. Maria, you need to make the sheet bread version (focaccia) some time, with your choice or toppings/seasonings. It’s the same batter, and so is the GF pizza crust on my site. All the same batter. So glad you tried these! and LIKE them! :) On the rise, I found mine would spread and not rise much unless I used a pan that restricted size, like a muffin-top pan, or small mini-cake pans I found. But like you say, thin is OK by me. :)

      • I used the mini cake pans, and they browned nicely on the sides and bottom. I just can’t believe this bread. I love bread and have sorely missed it doing low carb, and having tried so many that just did not pass muster, I was going to quit on bread altogether. I’m so glad I decided to give it one more try. And BINGO! This is it. I will definitely be going to find the focaccia and the pizza crust, and if they deliver like the bread, I’ll be in heaven. Question: Is this doable in the microwave (no browning though)? Many, many, many thanks :)

        • Honestly, I haven’t tried it in the MW yet. Tellin’ my age here, but I never “cooked” in my MW much before low-carbing bread recipes. I always just used the darn thing to reheat stuff. You younger cooks are training me it’s an “oven”, too. LOL I’ll have to try it. Or if your beat me to it, let me know how it works! :)

  8. Peggy do you have a print option for your recipes? I’m not tech savvy and if the button isn’t right in front of me, I don’t know how to print it. lol thanks…..72 yr old fan…………

    • Judy, down at the bottom of the recipes is a roa of colored buttons. The one on the left will bring up a print-friendly screen which allows you to delete text (when highlighted yellow) at will and set print size (at the top). you can even delete photos at the top. Then just click print. Hope this helps.

  9. Hi, these sound wonderful, but I was wondering if there is a way to get the calorie count down? Almost 400 calories for just the bun,, then add the burger or other goodies, you’ll have practically a half a days worth of calories in one sandwich.. not counting anything extra a person may want to have for that meal. :)

    • Welcome Rhonda! Short answer to your question, not really, unless you played around with coconut flour instead of almond. And the amount would be less and require much experimentation. You might Google and fine one with coconut flour alaready kitchen tested. But I suspect you’re going to end up with a dry, coconut-tasting bun. Long answer, MOST LC breads are higher in calories than traditional flour breads because alternate flours like almond flour are higher in cals. Plus, the cheeses used to bind the alternate flours together (to repalce the lack of gluten in them) are also high in cals. That’s why low-carbers really can’t afford to eat bread everyday, unless they are fond of the egg-white based Oopsie rolls, which I personally am not fond of. It’s one of the prices we pay to go low carb, really. If you find a low-calorie bun other than the Oopsie Rolls, let me know. I sure haven’t in 5 years of searching and kitchen testing.

    • I’d be more inclined to use blended cottage cheese, sour cream or Greek or drained yogurt. Butter is 100% fat and that’s not really an equivalent swap for the dairy part of cream cheese. Might not cook right for you. I suppose you could try baking a half recipe forming 3 buns and see how it works, that way you won’t lose so many ingredients if it fails. Low carb baking is all pretty much a trial-and-error science experiment IMHO. :)

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