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This recipe for Homemade Gluten Free Suet has been on my website since the dinosaurs roamed the earth. It is still one of the most popular recipes on my website (hands off other free from websites!) and it’s a simple recipe, so simple it’s easy to over think it and imagine it’s way more complicated than it is.
I’m writing it up again because it used to nestle snuggly with my recipes for Gluten Free Dumplings using Homemade Suet and my Gluten Free Beef Stew and Dumplings recipe. However, Google threw a hissy fit as it didn’t like my Gluten Free Suet Recipe being on the same page as another recipe (such is the tedious eye-rolling world of blogging). So here my recipe sits all sparkly and new (not) on a page of it’s very own.
Are you feeling the frustration?
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What is suet anyway?
Suet is actually the hard fatty areas in beef and mutton found around the internal organs such as the kidneys. This solid fat is clarified and chopped then finally tossed in flour to avoid coagulation. To clarify, the clarification process (see what I did there?) is whereby the fat is heated to separate the water from the fat.
Due to the fact is was originally a solid lump of fat, it has a higher melting point than butters for example. This is how suet retains its shape in foods when baked. Take the mince pie for example. You’ve probably bit into a mince pie and seen a little lump of suet right?
Why is suet used in recipes?
I’ve mentioned the fact that suet has a high melting point. This is one of the reasons it’s used in many savoury dishes such as suet puddings. The flavour enhances the bake, the fat retains is structure in pockets which in turn makes the suet crust moist but you can also achieve a crispy or flakiness with it too.
Interesting facts about suet
Never have I been so excited to research a subject! I’m a Master of History (MA) so you’ll have to excuse my geekiness.
Suet appears in pretty much every recipe in Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management (1859), I’m not even exaggerating, it’s incredible the amount of recipes that called for pounds of suet! I have a copy of her book myself and giggle every time I see suet in the ingredients. There’s even a suet pudding, which is literally just flour, milk, suet and salt and pepper. my nose is screwed up typing that, not my cup of tea! I actually challenged myself to open the book at a random page several times and every time without fail, there was a recipe with suet in it.
Atora Suet has been a household name in the UK since 1932 and there’s a lovely post here The History of Atora Suet if you want to read more on the history of the brand. I hadn’t appreciated that something as simple as Atora isn’t easily sourced in the US, I guess that makes everyone in the US as limited as Coeliacs in the UK when it comes to shop bought suet then?
Fresh suet in it’s original form can be bought from your butcher. It comes in beef, lamb, pork and even venison. You can ask the butcher to chop it for you or take it home and chop or grate it yourself.
Beef suet is used more commonly in sweet puddings as the beef suet has a milder flavour whilst lamb suet is really meaty in flavour.
Vegetable suet is also available but has a lower melting point, it is suitable for vegetarians though.
Is ready made Suet Gluten Free?
Here in the UK the brand of suet we buy in the supermarket is Atora, as you can see below both the Beef and Vegetable Atora products are not gluten free as they have WHEAT in them.
Can I buy Gluten Free Suet?
Yes you can, it is available on The Vegan Kind Supermarket. The brand Suma make a gluten free vegetable suet that costs £2.19 before P&P. This link will take you to The Vegan Kind Supermarket and if you do purchase the suet I get a little bit of commission.
OR – you can make your own gluten free suet using a £1 block of vegetable fat and some gluten free flour and end up with 300g of suet that will keep in your fridge of freezer for months.
What can I make with Suet?
As mentioned I have my recipe for Gluten Free Beef Stew and Dumplings. Other recipes on this website that use gluten free suet are my Free From Clootie Dumpling: a traditional pudding and Simple Gluten Free Christmas Pudding. As my catalogue of recipes develop I’ll keep adding links and am keen to add Jam Roly Poly, Spotted Dick and Treacle Suet Pudding.
Homemade Gluten Free Suet Recipe
If you make it and like the recipe I would be eternally grateful if you popped back and commented leaving a star rating as this will tell search engines that this recipe is worth checking out and others will get to find it in searches.
Homemade Gluten Free Suet Recipe
- 100 g lard to make vegetable suet suitable for baking use a vegetable block of fat
- 200 g gluten free plain flour
- Simply cut the lard into cubes in a large bowl, add the flour and using your fingers or a pastry blender work until you have a large breadcrumb texture.100 g lard, 200 g gluten free plain flour
- To achieve a classic suet look you could use a potato ricer and store in the same way. I have added links to kitchen gadgets below.
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I have an account with The Vegan Kind and do most of my dairy free and vegan shopping when it comes to stocking up for ingredients. Buying in bulk is cheaper and you get points for purchases too. If you use the link I get a few pennies as I am now an affiliate for TVK. They also have heaps of gluten free products too so well worth a look if you and your family have complex dietary needs.
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*disclaimer: I use affiliate codes on my website, the vast majority are to Amazon. If you click on any of the links or images in the post and make a purchase my family will benefit from a small % of that purchase at no extra cost to you, in fact, for full transparency, in 2020 I made my first £25, and recently in 2022 I reached my next £25 (Amazon don’t transfer the money until you reach £25). As you can see, it won’t make me a millionaire but it will treat me to a few coffees, Lord knows I need the caffeine!