Welcome fall baking with a fast & easy batch of my vegan coconut flour flax focaccia! Soft, tender & made with 3 ingredients (plus water, and optional salt), it is grain-free, gluten-free, oil-free, yeast-free, sugar-free, and customizable with any toppings and flavors you like.
Easy Vegan Grain-Free Focaccia
I don’t just like bread, I love it.
Equally important to me is developing and sharing easy-as-can-be bread recipes that all of you can make and love, too. I am 100% certain that this, my latest focaccia recipe, is all that and more.
Here are the the reasons why. It is:
- Made with 3 ingredients (plus water)
- Vegan (no eggs, no dairy)
- High fiber (3 grams per square)
- Quick & easy (one bowl and about 5 minutes total prep time)
- Customizable (with stir-ins or toppings)
Most importantly, it is tender and delicious, with a texture that resembles bread made from grain flour. Yippee!
Ingredients for the Focaccia
A complete list of the ingredients, with amounts and instructions, is located in the recipe card below.
The ingredient list is short and sweet. Here is what you will need:
- Coconut Flour: A delicately sweet gluten-free flour that can be used in a range of recipes (baking and beyond). It is the coconut fiber that remains after coconut milk extraction (it is then dried and ground), hence it has very little fat.
- Flaxseed Meal: I used golden flaxseed meal in the recipe, but any flaxseed meal can be used in its place. I recommend golden flaxseed meal, though because of it has a much lighter flavor (compared to traditional, dark flaxseed meal).
- Baking Powder: Make sure to use baking powder, not baking soda (they have very different strengths; the crust will taste truly dreadful with an equal amount of baking soda). If you need the focaccia to be 100% gluten-free, check the label to make sure that the baking powder is certified gluten-free.
You will also need some regular tap water. I like to add salt to the dough (1/8 teaspoon is just right for me), but it is optional (and/or adjustable to your needs and tastes). You can also sprinkle some flaky salt on top of the dough before baking.
Focaccia without Oil
Traditional focaccia is made with olive oil, both in the dough and drizzled on top before baking. My newfangled focaccia has no oil at all. It does not need it. Moreover, it is better without it.
Step by Step Instructions
Step One: Prep the Oven & Baking Pan
Step Two: Whisk the Dry Ingredients
Step Three: Mix in the Water
Add the water to the dry ingredients in the bowl. Using a rubber/silicone spatula or a wooden spoon, mix until completely combined.
The dough will appear somewhat loose upon initial mixing. Within seconds, the flaxseed meal and coconut flour will absorb the liquid. After a minute or two, the dough will be thick, though still moist.
If the dough is not moist, as described above, it is most likely because of too much flour, and/or flaxseed meal (from packing the measuring cups). It’s ok! Add more water, a little at a time, until the dough resembles the description and photos.
Step Four: Press Out the Dough
Plop the dough onto the prepared pan and use your fingers and palm to press it out into an 8 inch (20 cm) square. Use your hands to square off the sides and press the dough to an even thickness (about 1/2 inch, or 1.25 cm).
Use your fingertips to dimple the dough all over.
If you like, add some toppings! Freshly chopped rosemary, a sprinkle of flaky salt, or everything bagel topping (not traditional, but so good!) are a few of my favorite focaccia toppings.
Step Five: Bake
Bake the focaccia in the preheated oven for 18 to 21 minutes, or until the surface of the dough looks dry and the focaccia is golden brown.
Remove the focaccia from the oven and cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheet. The bread is delicate when hot from the oven, so do not try to move it right away.
After 10 minutes, carefully slide the focaccia onto a large cooling rack to cool completely.
The bread has a very modest rise, but it is 100% fluffy and bread-y! It is so easy and utterly delightful.
Slice & Savor
Transfer the focaccia to a cutting board and cut into pieces. I typically cut the focaccia into nine squares, but cut it any which way you like.
How to Serve Vegan Coconut Flour Flax Focaccia
This versatile bread goes with just about everything. Pair it with soups and salads, use it for sandwiches, or savor it solo. Yum!
It is great as a multipurpose dinner bread to “go with” entrees of all kinds, too (I love it for mopping up curries, sauces and stews).
FAQ & Tips
- Preheat the Oven: Make sure that the oven is completely preheated to 400F (200C) before mixing up the focaccia dough. It will take 10 to 15 minutes to preheat your oven, but only 5 minutes to mix and press the dough.
- Measure the Flour with Care: The best way to measure flour is to lightly spoon it into measuring cups (do not pack the flour). For the greatest accuracy, using a digital kitchen scale to measure (I have the weight, in grams, in the recipe card below).
- Use Your Judgment: If the dough looks too dry, add a bit more water; if it looks too wet, add a small amount of additional flour. It is a forgiving dough!
Can I Use Other Flours in Place of Coconut Flour?
No, coconut flour cannot be replaced with any other flours; the recipe will not work.
Coconut flour is used in substantially different quantities compared to just about every other flour (gluten-free or otherwise). It also has many idiosyncrasies, so it is best to stay with the ingredients as specified.
Can I Make the Dough in Advance?
I do not recommend it. The baking powder will lose its potency if the dough is made too far in advance. The dough comes together very quickly (literally 2 to 3 minutes), so there really is no advantage to making the dough ahead of time.
How Should I Store Leftover Focaccia?
The focaccia can be stored in an airtight container at cool room temperature for 1 day or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
I do not recommend freezing. Freezing alters the texture of the bread; once defrosted, it is very crumbly.