Flip Cookbook

Girl geek foodies making healthy cooking fun and easy.


Gluten Free Cheez-It’s… Goldfish.. Ducks and Tulips? (Spicy Cheddar Crackers)

Day dreaming about food is such a pain. I know, I should probably be saying that it’s the most joyous thing about being so integrally involved with a food blog. But it’s not. It’s really not.

Here’s how food blogging often works for me. I get this serious craving to eat a particular thing. Oh for example (just off the top of my head, you know) .. Cheez It’s. The craving is so severe that I start picturing little cheeze-it everywhere. Or even those cheese goldfishes. That diamond print on my Bounty: Cheez-It’s. The square warts on my office ceiling: Cheez-It’s. The smile on my Chester the cat desk decoration: Smiling Gold Fish. My computer screen: Cheez-It’s. The kleenex box, the tiles, the square pillow, the square cup holder, every toddler that is munching on those damn fishes! Oh.. it gets pretty bad.

Okay. Besides having intense imagination, there really isn’t anything wrong with this I suppose. Everyone gets cravings. And there is the most obvious solution – just grab the keys and head off to the grocery store to buy a box of Cheez It’s.

HA! I laugh in my own face. Driving to the store to curb cravings just doesn’t happen.


The obvious reason is because I’m gluten free and both Sunshine Cheez-It’s and Pepperidge Farms Goldfish are not. But the not so obvious reason is that my craving instantly turns into excitement – “Wouldn’t this be a great recipe to share on Flip Cookbook?!”.

And so, my craving ends up lasting for about a week till I figure out how exactly I want to make the goodie. And that my friends, is how I torture myself with my own cravings. And it’s also how this recipe came about.

I had a really fun time making these crackers because the duck and tulip shapes I used for the crackers. It felt like a celebration of spring. For many, Spring started about a month or so ago. But up here in the mountains, the snow is finally starting to disappear except for some patches in the shade. I’m starting to see some gorgeous birds like the American Robin with it’s beautiful orange belly. The temperatures are rising. I think we’re going to hit 70°F this weekend. Yes, spring is finally here.

I did have a little trouble trying to cut out the shapes because the dough kept sticking to my cookie cutters. I imagine if I had let the dough sit in the freezer for 30 minutes before rolling it out, I might have had an easier time. Never-the-less, the cookies were fun to make AND to play.. ehhmmm… create artwork.. with afterwards. Like this fun bird at the edge of a tulip meadow ensemble.


Gluten Free Cheez-It’s (Spicy Cheddar Crackers)

Makes: Lots of crackers (more than 50)
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Ready in: 1 hour 30 minutes


  • 1 block Cheddar cheese (About 8 – 10 oz.)
  • 1 1/2 cups Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (room temperature)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 2 tablespoons yogurt


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Shred the cheese. (Thickness almost doesn’t matter here).

2. Slice the butter.

3. In a food processor (or blender) pulse the cheese, flour, butter and cayenne powder. The mixture should look like coarse sand.

4. Add the yogurt and pulse till the mixture becomes dough like. You may need a little more yogurt but add sparingly!

5. Divide the dough into rollable amounts. Roll out a section on a non stick surface (like a well floured surface.. or wax paper .. or parchment paper). It should be fairly thin – about 1/8th of an inch.

6. Cut the dough into squares using something like a knife or pizza roller or have some fun with shapes using those underused cookie cutters!

7. Place the cut dough onto cookie sheets that are lined with parchment paper. The pieces should be about 1/2 to 1 inch apart.

8. Bake for 10 – 15 minutes. Keep an eye on them after 10 minutes, they tend to get brown fast! Allow them to cool on racks for 20 minutes. Store in a vacuum sealed container or just start munching!

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18 Responses to Gluten Free Cheez-It’s… Goldfish.. Ducks and Tulips? (Spicy Cheddar Crackers)

  1. We’ve been experimenting with cheesy crackers for the kids at the bakery. I like the adult twist with the kick of spice.

    Hope all is well!

    • Raj says:

      These really bring out the kid in me! You’re right – they are a little more adult because of the spice but I’m pretty sure they would be just as amazing leaving that out.

      Looking forward to trying out yours next time I’m in town!

  2. KM says:

    Sigh, now if only I didn’t have to be gluten AND dairy free… sure do miss those Cheez-it’s!

    • Raj says:

      Sigh. I feel ya. You know what they say — necessity is the fuel for innovation. 🙂 If you do come up with a dairy and gluten free version please do share!

    • Tiff says:

      I found a vegan gluten free cheez it recipe on forks and beans if you wan to check that out…. I’m going to try this recipe

  3. joy says:

    Oh man, I so want these now! I even have a small star cookie cutter that would be perfect. Hmm… (wanders off to kitchen)

  4. Elizabeth says:

    This recipe looks delicious! I have been looking for a gluten-free answer to this MUST HAVE snack!
    Have you thought about substituting nutritional yeast for some of the cheese flavor? (I find it in the supermarket in the bulk foods section – next to the ground flours or in health food stores.)
    I was introduced to nutritional yeast after I went gluten & dairy free. (It is not only a handy flavor enhancer but is chock full of B vitamins, too.)
    It has a nice, zippy cheddar cheese-like flavor when you add a touch of mustard or citric acid powder (from health food store) to baked cheese recipes. Ironically, it is used in many processed Macaroni and Cheese powders. So why not, right?

  5. Meg says:

    Does it make a difference if you use greek yogurt instead?

  6. Esther says:

    Just made these for back to school lunch/snacks for my daughters. They loved them fresh out of the oven! Let’s see if they last the week as planned….

  7. Faye says:

    The Cheez-its crackers look scrumptious! We don’t care for yogurt. Would buttermilk work instead – but also sparingly? For the Garlicky Mashed Cauliflower: I’ve never had anything using yeast without baking it first. What is the nutritional yeast supposed to do for the cauliflower mixture?

  8. Pingback: Wheat Free, Soy Free and Missing the Gold Fish Crackers | Fit Moms of Greater Denver

  9. The tulips and little bird have me longing for spring and warmer weather. Guess until that happens, we’ll have to enjoy your recipe.

    Thanks so much for sharing!


  10. Wendy says:

    For all of you worried about the cheese if you are lactose intolerant, cheddar cheese is lactose free! I don’t know why they’ve never labelled it as such before, but certain brands started to, so I decided to look it up. It depends on the aging process, but the longer the cheese is aged and the harder it is, the less lactose it has. As far as I can tell, most, if not all, cheddar cheese is lactose free. Yeah!!

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