Intro to Baking with Alternative Flours

Join us in this in-person, hands-on class as we explore alternative flours with Karen Shepard. She’ll give us an introduction to the amazing range of commonly used flours, starches, and leaveners. We’ll learn about everything from almond and brown rice to quinoa and teff flours (and beyond!), including what to look for and how to use them. 

We'll make three recipes: a tender, buttery Almond Pound CakeChocolate Chip Buckwheat Cookies with crispy edges and soft centers; and Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting. Yes, these treats are gluten-free, so they’ll no doubt be a hit with those with gluten restrictions; these flavorful baked goods are so good though, they can stand on their own. So we expect they’ll make it into your regular rotation of go-to baked goods regardless of any dietary needs, all thanks to the flavor-packed power of alternative flours.

More about Karen Shepard

Karen has been baking since she was a child, learning traditional methods from her grandmother who lived with her when she was growing up. More than a decade ago, Karen began working with Ethel’s Baking Company, a woman-founded, gluten-free baking company that has since gone nationwide. Karen was a part-owner at Ethel’s, wearing many different hats, but her favorite work was in new product development—she’s always enjoyed testing new baking methods and ingredients. After leaving Ethel’s, she began experimenting with alternative flours to create (or recreate!) recipes she longed for. All her recipes are delicious, full-flavored, all-natural, and free of any gums or binders that are often found in alternative flour baking. Our Managing Partner Amy Emberling is a fan; after trying one of Karen’s cakes, she said, “It was simply delicious. Sometimes alternatives are acceptable stand-ins for the real thing. This cake was the real thing.”

Karen has been with Zingerman’s for 5 years now, at Zingerman’s Candy Manufactory, and previously Mail Order. Now, she’s looking forward to combining her love of Zingerman’s with her passion for great baking with a new series of classes here at BAKE! featuring alternative flours.


Our classes (except for family classes & kids camps) are for adults 17 & up.

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