Gluten-Free Hanukah Recipes

Chanukah, Hannukah... However You Spell It, It's Easy to Make It Gluten-Free

hanukkah menorah
Hanukah is a gluten-free-friendly holiday.. Ken Whitmore/Getty Images

The Jewish festival of Hanukah is one of the easiest holidays for gluten-free diets. Potato latkes (pancakes), one of the classic Hanukah foods, are usually made with flour or matzo meal, but it's very easy to use gluten-free flour or potato starch instead, or you can source gluten-free matzo (see my list of gluten-free matzo at the bottom of this article).

Typical Hanukah foods such as potato latkes and sufganiyot (jelly donuts) tend to involve a lot of oil.

If you want to avoid the oil, there's also a recipe for gluten-free Hanukah cookies in the list below. Chocolate too is popular, especially little chocolate coins wrapped in gold foil.

Why the oil? In 165 B.C., the Jewish Maccabees won a military victory over the Greek-Syrians and were able to recapture the Jewish holy temple. The Temple had been desecrated, and during its re-purification, one day's worth of oil (all that was left in the desecrated temple) burned for eight days until more oil could be brought. Hanukah commemorates this eight-day miracle of the oil. (You can learn more on About.com's Judaism site.)

Below are links to recipes for Hanukah foods. And don't forget — if you're too busy or not in the mood to cook from scratch, the Manischewitz Potato Pancake and Sweet Potato Pancake mixes (sold in many supermarkets) are both gluten-free.

Gluten-Free Hanukah Recipes from About.com

Elsewhere on the Web

From Gluten-Free-Bay

From Jewish Food List

    From The Gluten-Free Goddess

    Edible Hanukah Gifts

    From The Challah Connection
    This company has a great assortment of edible gluten-free Hanukah gifts, from chocolates to cookies to gift baskets with savory or sweet treats.

    From Amanda's Own Confections
    Mail-order gluten-free, dairy-free, Kosher Hanukah gelt.

    Gluten-Free Matzo

    Obviously, matzo is associated with Passover, not with Hanukah. But as I said above, potato latkes — a traditional Hanukah food — often are made with matzo meal. So it's not beyond the bounds of possibility that you'll need to source gluten-free matzo (or at least know which brands of matzo qualify) in order to make that traditional family potato latke recipe.

    Here's where you can find safe matzo (out of which you can make matzo meal):

    Have a happy Hanukah!

    (Edited by Jane Anderson)

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