'Malt' Loaf Homage

Another Gluten-free cooking for kids recipe

A few days ago, Carly Talbot of gutenfreeb.com asked if anyone had a recipe for a gluten free version of a malt loaf. A malt loaf uses barley malt and barley flour, both of which are not gluten free.  To get the required squidgy, stogdgy texture and the malty flavour some improvising would be required.  I was keen to have a go.  

Soreen gf.jpg

If you are into malt loaf, then you will probably recognise the brand Soreen.  This is a quintessential English/British brand, makers of the original malt loaf.  Although I have seen it on the shelves with it's distinctive packaging,  I  admit, I have never actaully tried it.  Apparently you slice off a thick wedge and slather it with butter and wash it down with a strong cup of tea. A very British experience and a bit of an acquired taste.  

Well I tried it and I like the deep treacly flavour and the saltiness that comes from the malt.  The texture is a bit rubbery and reminds me of a bread that's gone badly wrong. So whilst not a traditional copy of the original,  my version has the deep caramely overtones and an earthiness similar to the original, but the texture is more like a moist tea bread.


1 large loaf

Preparation time

15 minutes to assemble and 45 minutes baking time


200g seedless raisins
300 ml freshly brewed tea (you will need 275ml of liquid)
50g dark Moscovado sugar
200g plain gluten free flour (Doves farm)
100g ground almonds
85g buckwheat flour (or Teff Flour)
1 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbs baking powder
1 egg
75ml blackstrap molasses (or treacle)
50g maple syrup (plus a little extra for glazing)
85g melted butter


Soak the raisins in the 300ml of freshly brewed tea.  I suggest 30 minutes of soaking time, but longer or shorter will be okay.

Preheat oven to 170 C.  Grease a large loaf tin with butter or sunflower oil and set aside.

Combine all of the dry ingredients, flour, sugar, ground almonds, salt, xanthan gum and baking powder in a large bowl. Mix well to combine. 

Drain the soaked raisins reserving the liquid.  Weigh out the liquid and top up with additional water to measure 275 ml.  

To the 275 ml of liquid, add the molasses and 50g maple syrup.  Add the liquid to the dry ingredients, along with the egg.  Mix gently to combine and then add the raisins, followed by the melted butter.  Mix gently to combine and pour into the prepared tin. 

Malt loaf making gf.jpg

Bake for 45 minutes until baked through.  A knife inserted in the middle should come out clean.

Glaze generously with maple syrup while still warm.  

Leave to cool completely before slicing.  Its best to leave the loaf to mature for a minimum of 24hours to get the best flavour and texture, but I know this is asking a bit much.  In between snacking, keep the loaf wrapped in tin foil to prevent it from drying out.

 glazed malt loaf 2 gf.jpg