How to Make a Truly Tasty, Gluten Free Afternoon Tea

Afternoon Tea is most certainly in vogue at the moment- with people everywhere falling back in love with this British favourite. Offerings vary from traditional fancies to more unique delights but, even so, it’s often hard to get your hands on particularly delicious ones of the gluten free variety.

Well, we’ve got you covered, having been disappointed in this arena ourselves. We’ve put together our very own compilation of gluten free desserts – perfect for even the most elegant of afternoon teas. So, whether you follow a gluten free diet or not, why not treat yourself this weekend to our truly tasty take on afternoon tea?

The best bits about any afternoon tea are the desserts, after all, which is why we’re focusing on the sweeter side of things. These three truly tasty recipes are perfect for recreating at home and make a wonderful selection with or without cucumber sandwiches.

Our short guide to gluten free afternoon tea includes: deliciously moreish coconut macaroon, the caveman’s own chocolate, walnut and salted caramel loaf cakes and almond and polenta bakewell scones. These recipes should yield 16 macaroons, 8 mini loaves and 8 bakewell scones

Coconut Macaroons


What you’ll need:

  • 4 x cups sweetened shredded coconut
  • 3 x tbsp. sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 x tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 x eggs whites
  • ¼ tsp. salt

Preheat the oven to 160°C/325°F/Gas 4.

For Decoration:

  • ½ cup x icing sugar


  • 2 x baking trays
  • 2 x tablespoons
  • Baking parchment
  • Wooden spoon
  • Medium Sized Mixing Bowl
  • Electric or Hand Whisk
  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Rubber spatula
  • Cooling rack



To begin, set your oven racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven to be sure your macaroons will bake evenly. Then line the two baking trays with parchment paper. Next you’ll need to mix together the shredded coconut, sweetened condensed milk and vanilla extract, in a medium sized bowl, using your wooden spoon, before setting to one side.

Grab your electronic mixer, although with a strong arm and steadfast determination you can hand whisk here, to beat the egg whites and salt until stiff peaks are formed. Hold the mixture above your head at your own peril. Now use the rubber spatula to carefully fold your stiffened egg whites into the coconut mixture which was set aside earlier.

Using two spoons form sixteen heaped mounds of this mixture across your baking trays – lay out the macaroons an inch apart and make sure they are not touching. Bake for about 25 minutes, until the tops are light gold and the bottoms a darker shade.

The egg whites will become sticky and caramelised so these may take a while to cool. Once they reach room temperature dust with icing sugar for decoration. Now spend the rest of the morning trying not to eat all the macaroons before your guests arrive.

Top Tips:

  • These little bite sized treats are incredibly moreish which is why we’ve doubled up the numbers on this dessert, if you’re catering for a large party you may want to double up even further.
  • Don’t be fooled by the seemingly simple process here- the difference between burnt and beautiful can be mere moments.

Almond & Polenta Bakewell Scones


What you’ll need:

  • 1 x cup polenta
  • 2 x tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 cup x almond meal
  • 1 x cup raisons
  • 1 x cup sultanas
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 60ml cream
  • 125ml milk, plus a little extra for brushing

For the topping:

  • cherry jam
  • whipped cream


  • Baking tray
  • Baking parchment
  • Wooden spoon
  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Optional round cutter
  • Cooling rack
  • Whisk

Preheat oven to 220°C/440°F/Gas 7.


First things first once the oven is preheated, you need to line a baking tray with baking parchment. Now put your polenta, baking powder, almond meal and salt into a large mixing bowl and create a well in the centre. Combine the cream and milk to pour into your well and mix, using a wooden spoon, until your dough begins to form.

Next, lightly pat the dough onto a floured surface before continuing to use light pats to extend your dough into a large oval – where you will place your raisons and sultanas centrally within the oval. Bring the outer edges of your dough into the centre to form an envelope and cover the fruit entirely, then knead lightly to distribute the currants evenly.

You can use a lightly floured round cutter to cut rounds out of the dough or, for our preferred rustic finish, simply divide your dough into eight equal portions and use your hands to form roughly circular shapes.

Place the scones; ensuring they are not touching each other, onto your lined baking tray and lightly the brush the tops with the additional milk before baking for 10 minutes – or until risen and golden brown.

Once they are out of the oven and cooled, whisk double cream to serve and top with cherry jam. It’s the combination of this cherry jam, which you can even make yourself (if you’re brave enough), and the almond meal, which gives these scones their bakewell name.

Top Tips:

  • Although cooling is always recommended for health and safety, these scones are even better straight from the oven – daredevils should serve them warm dripping in jam and cream.
  • Whilst the polenta helps maintain some moisture in these scones, the addition of almond meal can result in super crumbly rounds, so feel free to use this asthe perfect excuse for extra toppings.

Mini Chocolate, Walnut & Salted Caramel Loaf Cakes



What you’ll need:

  • 3 x bananas
  • 2 x tbsp. honey
  • 1 x tbsp. vanilla essence
  • 3 x eggs
  • ½ cup x coconut milk
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  • 1 x cup almond flour
  • ½ cup x cocoa
  • ½ cup x almond butter
  • cocoa nibs.

For the frosting:

  • ½ cup x palm butter
  • 1 x cup maple syrup
  • 1 x tsp. vanilla essence
  • 1 x tsp. organic rock salt
  • 2 tbsp. x tapioca flour
  • 1 tbsp. x coconut milk fat
  • 2 tsp x ground walnuts
  • 1 x cup walnuts.


  • 8 x mini loaf tins
  • Loaf cases
  • Wooden spoon
  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Rubber spatula
  • Whisk
  • Cooling rack

Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4.


Once you’ve preheated your oven, fill each of your mini loaf tins with a matching loaf case. Then to start the mini loaves, mix together first your wet ingredients – coconut milk, eggs, banana, almond butter and a dash of vanilla essence, using your wooden spoon, until the mixture is silky smooth. Ensure you get rid of any unattractive lumpy bits at this stage; enlist the whisk here if necessary.

Next up it’s the dry stuff! Begin by combining cocoa, baking powder and cocoa nibs. These need mixing together separately in order to form a gooey paste before they can join the wet ingredients. The almond flour then needs to be added, in equal stages, before the mixture is divided evenly between your eight loaf tins.

Your loaves should take a maximum 15 minutes in the oven to bake but be ready to use your own judgement if necessary. Before you can tuck it they’ll need cooling on a rack and as your loaves cool you can begin making the world’s best frosting.

For this first mix together maple syrup, palm butter, rock salt, and vanilla essence – beat these together, using a rubber spatula, to ensure the mixture is pliable. Once you’re happy with consistency add coconut milk fat, tapioca flour and ground walnuts. The results will be slightly lighter than usual buttercreams so pop this in in the fridge set a bit before beginning to ice the loaves.

Once the loaves are cool and moist top with salted caramel buttercream and decorate with walnuts in any way you like – now enjoy this surprisingly guilt free, gluten free delight!

Top Tips:

  • The more cocoa nibs you can cram into the mixture, the better, for a surprise burst of chocolate once you tuck in.
  • This is a paleo cake recipe and therefore your loaves will be richer and denser than regular bakes. Keep this is mind when filling your tins, less is more for this batter.

Serve all three desserts together on individual cake towers or place in the centre of the table for guests to help themselves. A steaming pot of tea is mandatory and whimsical place settings never hurt. Then relax and soak up the praise as friends and family enjoy your fine hospitality.

Now, we don’t know about you but that’s gotten us rather hungry – we’re off to partake in a spot of cake. Let us know if you whip up any of our featured recipes or want to share any of your own.


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