Gluten Free Fruitcake Cookies Recipe

The fact that this recipe even exists… it’s sort of a miracle.

You see, I’m one of those people that hate fruitcake. It’s not that I buy into mass “ew!” hysteria (I love broccoli and Brussels sprouts, for instance!), it’s that I find glaceed / candied fruit to be one of the nastiest things on the planet. I mean, right up there with Velveeta. Gross.

Then, there is the “gluten free” issue.

As I mentioned in my recipe for an Easy way to make French Macarons, I am NOT a fan of anything that uses fake flours to make a regular recipe into a gluten free recipe. I’m a major “Gluten Free” Snob, and pretty much stick to treats that are inherently gluten free, such as coconut macaroons, Pavlova, and French Macarons.

I’ve just always found anything made with the fake flours to be nasty, both in taste and texture.

You may be asking yourself, right about now, WHY I created this recipe. Well, I’ll tell you – painkillers!

gluten free fruitcake cookies recipe

I really hate taking painkillers, as they make me feel really gross. I have to be in really rough shape to even consider it – and making tamales this weekend really beat me up. When I couldn’t move my arm/shoulder without screaming pain for a few hours, I finally caved in.

45 minutes later, I was sorta woozy and craving fruitcake. Yes, I know – I *HATE* the stuff.

So, I did what one would expect an ADD, creative baker with gluten allergies to do when high as a kite – I designed a gluten free recipe, and demanded nicely asked my husband to drive me shopping for the ingredients I would require.

I chopped the fruit and soaked them in booze overnight, looking forward to baking them the next day.

OH. WOW. These are amazing! I mean, amazing-amazing, not “amazing – for a gluten free cookie”. The substitution of dried fruits for glaceed, the Southern Comfort… it just created this vivid palette of flavor, and texture. These were so fabulous, my not-stuck-in-gluten-free-hell husband LOVES them. A few days later, and I’m already putting on a second batch! So good!

We used a mix of raisins, cranberries, cherries, apricots, and pineapple, but you can use a combination of whatever dried fruit you love. Oh, and don’t worry about buying too much – not only will you want to put on another batch once you try these… but I’ll be posting a recipe for gluten free fruitcake tomorrow!

For a HUGE variety of dried fruits, there’s no beating Nuts Online. Apples, blackberries, cantaloupe – so much variety! Just go for the more natural, chewy type dried fruit. Banana chips, freeze dried, etc – they won’t work as well.

gluten free fruitcake cookies

Gluten Free Fruit Cake Cookies Recipe
(This makes about 20-24 LARGE cookies… probably a good idea to double the recipe!)

1 lb (About 3 cups) mixed dried fruit*
1 cup Southern Comfort **
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 eggs
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
Finely grated zest of 1 orange
1/2 cup Sorghum flour
1/4 cup White rice flour
1/4 cup Coconut flour
1 tsp Xanthan gum
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 lb. pecans, chopped

A day or two before baking the cookies, chop dried fruits into pieces, mix in Southern Comfort, and cover.

Preheat oven to 325F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper, or coat well with baking spray. Strain dried fruit mixture, leaving it in your sieve to drain while you prepare the rest of the cookie batter.

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and zests, continue beating until eggs are fully incorporated and mixture is once again smooth and fluffy.

In a separate bowl, combine flours, xanthan gum, baking soda, and cinnamon. Add most of it (reserve about 1/4 cup) to the butter & sugar mixture, beat gently until well combined.

Add strained fruit to the reserved flour mixture, toss well to coat the pieces (to separate them a bit). Add coated fruit and pecans to the cookie batter, mix well.

Use a tablespoon, cookie scoop, or small ice cream scoop to drop rounded spoonfuls of the batter onto prepared baking sheets. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown. Allow to cool on sheets for 5 minutes or so, before gently transferring to baking racks to finish cooling.

Once cookies are cool, keep them stored in airtight containers. Much like actual fruitcake, these tend to get even better with age!

* Although I’ve been a happy repeat customer for years, I am required by FTC law to disclose: Nuts Online actually gifted me a few ingredients for the development of some recipes several months ago. I would never in a million years recommend a company that I wasn’t thrilled with. It was my history as a BIG FAN of theirs, that prompted me to work with them in this manner in the first place. I receive no compensation for this endorsement – I just love em!

** If you’re not a fan of Southern Comfort, use Jack Daniels, Rum, or Brandy. Also, add a pinch each of cloves and nutmeg – it’ll work fabulously with these other spirits.

gluten free fruitcake cookies

Entering this recipe in the Food Bloggers of Canada “Christmas in July” Cookie Contest!

Interested in Gluten-free cooking and baking? You’ll LOVE Beyond Flour: A Fresh Approach to Gluten-Free Cooking and Baking!

How many times have you come across a gluten-free recipe claiming to be “just as good as the normal version!”, only to wind up with weird textures, aftertastes, etc? Most gluten-free recipes are developed by taking a “normal” recipe, and swapping in a simulated “all purpose” gluten-free flour… whether store bought, or a homemade version. “Beyond Flour” takes a different approach: developing the recipe from scratch. Rather than swapping out the flour for an “all purpose” mix, I use various alternative flours as individual ingredients – skillfully blending flavours, textures, and other properties unique to each flour. Supporting ingredients and different techniques are also utilized to achieve the perfect end goal … not just a “reasonable facsimile”. Order your copy here.

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Imagine gluten-free foods that are as good – or better! – than their traditional, gluten-filled counterparts. Imagine no longer settling for foods with bizarre after-tastes, gummy consistency, and/or cardboard texture. Imagine graham crackers that taste just like the real thing. Crisp, flaky crackers…without the sandy texture. Hybrid tortillas that: look and act like flour tortillas, with the taste of fresh roasted corn! Imagine chewy, delicious cookies that *everyone* will want to eat! Imagine BAGELS. If you’ve cooked from “Beyond Flour”, you already know that these fantasies can be reality – it’s all in the development of the recipes. Order your copy here.

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2 thoughts on “Gluten Free Fruitcake Cookies Recipe

  1. Does the alcohol cook out? Hubbie is in recovery so I thought about soaking them in Vanilla extract maybe. I know that has alcohol in it as well but I do not purchase any alcohol. Ideas?

    1. No, it doesn’t really cook out. I wouldn’t recommend soaking in vanilla, as that would be WAY too strong a flavour.

      Instead, I’d pick a mild fruit juice or non alcoholic sparkling wine and simmer the dried fruit in it just until the fruit softens up and soaks up most of the liquid.

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