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Old 11-11-2002, 11:13 AM   #1
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Guar or Xanthan as Thickeners

I'm planning for Thanksgiving...does anybody have experience with Guar Gum or Xanthan ? I'm trying to thicken recipes.

Thanks.

Jane
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Old 11-11-2002, 11:16 AM   #2
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I just used some last night for the first time - made myself some turkey gravy. It was okay... not the same as a true cooked gravy - but certainly a reasonable substitute. I am going to try some in strawberry SF Davinci syrup to make a thicker syrup for my ketopancakes... someone suggested that on this board... and I think it is a GRAND idea!
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Old 11-11-2002, 11:19 AM   #3
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Hi, Dixie. I think the idea about thickening Davinci is a GREAT idea too. What did you use for the turkey gravy - Xanthan or Guar?

Jane

PS - DId you ever get a chance to try DH's blueberry pancakes?
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Old 11-11-2002, 11:24 AM   #4
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I used Thicken/Thin Not/Starch thickener which is composed of a combination of vegetable gums (acacia, guar, carbo, xanathan) in that order.
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Old 11-11-2002, 12:27 PM   #5
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I use guar gum all the time. I haven't tried Xanthan yet, but I haven't seen it in the stores here, and guar works great for me. I just sprinkle it on dry until it gets thick enough.

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Old 11-11-2002, 01:16 PM   #6
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I have both and prefer the xanthan gum, but guar gum is about half the price or even more.

I find that I have to mix both of those gums in a mini food processor to get rid of the lumps, though... and remember, a little goes along way!

Doug
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Old 11-11-2002, 07:29 PM   #7
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Has anyone tried using xanthan gum as a filler or stablizer in "breads" made with soy flour or nut flours?

KD
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Old 11-11-2002, 11:19 PM   #8
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xanthan gum

KD, I always add 1 tsp of guar gum and 1 tsp of xanthan gum to EVERY baked recipe for cakes, breads, muffins etc. It makes all the difference in the world as to how these baked goods turn out. They emulisify the flours and help them rise without the gluten of wheat flour and are vital for really good baked products.
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Old 11-12-2002, 06:17 AM   #9
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Thanks, gettingsmaller. ;-) I'm going to add xanthan gum, now. I don't have guar gum, tho, so do you think I should add 2 tea of xanthan gum? Will it give the same results?

KD
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Old 11-12-2002, 06:24 AM   #10
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I use guar gum to thicken stock for gravey with excelent resutls. I make homade bone stocks, most commonly with turkey. I will take some of the meat and chop very fine for texture and disolve the guar gum into melted butter with a wisk, finaly add the butter/guar gum mixture to boiling stock with the wisk.
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Old 11-12-2002, 06:27 AM   #11
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KD, this description is from the bobs red mill . com site.

"Xanthan Gum is used by people who are allergic to gluten to add volume and viscosity to bread and other gluten-free baked goods. It is made from a tiny microorganism called Xanthomonas campestris and is a natural carbohydrate."

I have used it in Atkins Blueberry muffins and it worked well. I have used it in gravies, ice cream and fruit toppings for cheesecake, too.

Doug
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Old 11-12-2002, 06:30 AM   #12
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Thanks, everybody. I'm ready for Turkey gravy on thanksgiving!

Jane
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Old 11-12-2002, 07:23 AM   #13
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Thanks, Doug!. ;-) Gosh, maybe I'll become a cook yet! I'm more interested in learning how to make low carb "breads" more for my diabetic mom's sake instead of mine. She's the one who really misses her old favorites, and can't seem to learn to love new favorites. ;-)

Mom and I had a conversation a few days ago, and I asked her why she still hankered for bread, pancakes, etc. It's nostalgic...she's remembering when she was growing up, and how she misses life back then, how good peanut butter and honey sandwiches taste. She misses being able to eat sandwiches. So, if I can make believable substitutes, maybe she won't feel so deprived.



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Old 11-13-2002, 03:18 AM   #14
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Using 2 tsp of either xanthan gum or guar gum is fine for the baked goods recipes. I usually add 1 of each, but I don't think it matters what the combination is as long as you use 1 tsp per cup of fake flour. ALWAYS MIX THE GUMS IN WITH THE DRY INGREDIENTS WHEN MAKING BAKED GOODS. Otherwise, you will have a gummy mess. I prefer the xanthan gum for making gravy, but also use guar gum at times. Guar seems a little slimier to me than the xanthan gum when it comes to gravies and sauces. A tsp of either the guar or xanthan gum really makes a difference when making pancakes too. The gum really hold the pancakes together.

Last edited by gettingsmaller; 11-13-2002 at 03:22 AM..
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Old 11-13-2002, 09:02 AM   #15
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Thanks for the added info! ;-) I've been using a cream cheese/egg pancake recipe, which is still rather fragile. Do you suppose the xanthan gum will help these have more structure, and stay thicker? One of the main problems with alternative pancakes is they raise beautifully while cooking and remain warm, but when they cool down, they flatten to almost nothing. Has anyone tried usng xanthan gum in non-fake flour recipes--nut flour, soy, etc?

KD
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Old 11-13-2002, 12:25 PM   #16
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HELP HELP HELP, HOW DO YOU USE IT!!!

My first experience with guar gum turned into a goey, phlegm-consistency , lumpy, slimy , not suitable to be eaten by feral cats mess.

Can any tell me exactly how to use this stuff for gravy, and soup thickener? I tried to use it like cornstarch, and that was a disaster. I also have (expensive) Xanthum Gum, but I'm afraid to ruin another batch of soup.

Isn't Guar gum the stuff they mix with apple sauce for Geriatric invalids.

How do you keep it from "gumming" up? do you spinkle it in dry after the soup has cooked?

Help? Thanks
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Old 11-13-2002, 12:44 PM   #17
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Hi metga,

I use xanthan gum with a hand mixer. I put the gum in one spot on top of the liquid (I do not sprinkle) and then place my hand mixer over that spot and mix steadily for 30-45 seconds...never any problems... I believe you could do the same with guar gum.

Hope this helps ;-)
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Old 11-13-2002, 04:17 PM   #18
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thanks locarbman!
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Old 11-13-2002, 10:37 PM   #19
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KD, I would use the xanthan gum in the pancake recipe and try it out. My guess is that it will work because of the emulisifier properties it has. I know it makes a tremendous difference in the almond flour/whey protein powder recipe that I use. Mix it like locarbman says and see how it works. I have been adding a 1/4 tsp of xanthan gum at a time to gravies and sauces and have gotten to the point that my gravies are perfect without using a blender or hand mixer, but it takes a lot of practice and sprinkling. I think it is easier to just use the hand mixer on it depending on the type of pan one is using. If using a short skillet type, I would have the mixture all over the walls and ceilings.
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Old 11-14-2002, 04:37 AM   #20
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when mixing in guar or xanthan gum, I always set aside some liquid from the recipe (about 1/2 cup) and mix in the gum in my mini food processor until all the lumps are gone... then I add it to the main pot and whisk it in.

the first time I used guar gum it was a big balled up gummy mass also... ruined a potentially great gravy.. waaaah!

the other thing to remember is that with these gums you usually only need 1/4, 1/2 or so tsp. where you would have used several tsp. or even T of cornstarch... like I said above, a little goes a long way. this is mostly true with sauces, gravies, soups, etc. I add 1/2 - 2 tsp. for breads (mix the gums well with the dry ingredients first, then add in the wet stuff).

hth,

Doug
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Old 11-17-2002, 03:56 AM   #21
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What section of the grocery store would I find the guar or xanthan gums? I've never seen either, and with Thanksgiving coming up, I'm gonna need them.
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Old 11-17-2002, 05:05 AM   #22
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You may want to try bobsredmill dot com, that's the most available brand I believe, they have a store locater on the website. Xanthan gum is not an easy item to find in grocery stores, it's very much a specialty item. It's also on the pricey side, seems I paid $11-$12 for an 8 oz bag. I'm still learning how to use it properly, but as Doug and others have said, a little goes a long way.
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Old 11-17-2002, 05:19 AM   #23
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Thanks VAguy!
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Old 11-17-2002, 09:35 AM   #24
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I had one experiment fail on me this weekend. I was going to a shakespeare dinner, we dressed and cooked to a theme last night.. My dish was thinly sliced pork roast deep fried in a batter. The original batter was eggs, flour, milk, salt and pepper. I used vital wheat gluten flour, cream, and added two tsp guar gum per cup of flour.

It would not stay on the pork, when I added it to the deep fryer it completely disintegrated. I had to use boxed tempura mix, and I didn't eat it, I ate the other low carb things people brought... (OK creme brulee was NOT low carb, but I caved) lol

Just putting this up for future reference for people.
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Old 11-17-2002, 03:26 PM   #25
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Is it xanthan gum that does not have to be heated to thicken? You can put it in cold things like a milkshake to help thicken
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Old 11-17-2002, 03:46 PM   #26
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Yes! ;-)
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Old 11-17-2002, 04:59 PM   #27
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ISAW XANTHAM GUM CHEAP

www.azurefarms.com
click on products and I think it's on the 2nd page.
By the way what is the carb counts for Guar and xanthum?
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Old 11-17-2002, 05:35 PM   #28
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The Bob's Red Mill package of Xanthan Gum shows total carbs 8 grams with Fiber of 9 grams...guess it would be 0 net carbs.

Now Brand Guar Gum shows a serving size of 1/2 teaspoon with total carbs of 1 gram and dietary fiber of 1 gram for 0 net carbs.

Hope this helps ;-)

Last edited by locarbman; 11-17-2002 at 05:36 PM..
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Old 01-29-2003, 05:28 AM   #29
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[color=darkblue]Ok, where does one find Xanthan or Guar? (The link, above, no longer works).[/color]
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Old 01-29-2003, 06:13 AM   #30
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Fizban, if you can't find xanthan gum, which I prefer over guar gum b/c it seems to make wet sauces and things slimey, in your health food store or in a good grocery store in the health food section, then email me and I can give you a website that carries it.

You might just do an internet search and see if there's something in your area.

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