Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (204 C) and grease a baking sheet.
In a measuring cup or small mixing bowl, combine coconut milk, lemon juice or apple cider vinegar, and vanilla (optional). Stir to combine and set aside.
To a large mixing bowl, add gluten-free flour blend, almond flour, cornstarch, organic cane sugar, sea salt, and baking powder and whisk to combine. Add the coconut oil and use a pastry cutter, whisk, or fork to "cut" the oil into the flour until small bits remain.
Add ¾ of the coconut buttermilk to the dry mixture and stir with a spoon to combine. You're looking for a semi-sticky dough, and you may not use all of the coconut milk. I used all but 1-2 Tbsp (as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size).
If your mixture looks too dry, add more coconut milk. If it looks too wet, compensate with 1-2 Tbsp at a time of almond flour or gluten-free flour blend. (see photo)
Transfer your dough onto a well (gluten-free) floured surface and dust the top with a little gluten-free flour. Handling as little as possible, form into a 1-inch-thick disc with your hands. Then using a well-floured biscuit or cookie cutter (or narrow drinking glass), cut out circles and transfer carefully to a greased baking sheet (arranging the shortcakes so they touch - see photo). Continue, reforming dough as needed, until all of the dough is used - about 6 shortcakes (as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size).
Brush the tops of the shortcakes with coconut milk or melted coconut oil and sprinkle with a bit more cane sugar. Oil will help them form more of a crust, whereas coconut milk will help the biscuits remain a bit more moist. Both work great!
Bake at 400 F for 15-17 minutes or until the outside is crisp and they are beginning to brown slightly. Then increase heat to 450 F (232 C) and bake for another 3-5 minutes to brown the outside (see photo). Watch carefully and be sure not to burn.
During this time, you can prepare your Coconut Whipped Cream (optional) and slice your strawberries. Sprinkle strawberries with sugar or stevia to sweeten + help create a sauce (optional).
Remove biscuits from oven and let cool 5 minutes. Then carefully separate the shortcakes so they can cool completely. It's important to let these cool and the steam to release or they can be a bit on the moist side. Room temperature is best for serving.
To serve, carefully slice shortcakes in half (optional) and top with sliced strawberries and coconut whipped cream or ice cream.
Best when fresh. Store leftover shortcakes covered at room temperature for 3 days or in the freezer up to 1 month.
*If subbing your own GF blend or store-bought, know that the final result may differ. *If nut-free, you could try subbing the almond flour for another gluten-free flour, such as oat flour. However, I haven't tested it this way and can't guarantee the results. *If not gluten-free, sub the gluten-free flour blend, almond flour, and cornstarch for unbleached all purpose flour (or gluten flour of choice). I haven't tested this recipe this way and can't guarantee the results. *You can try subbing the cane sugar for coconut sugar or stevia to taste, but I haven’t tested it this way and can’t guarantee the results. *Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with strawberries and without coconut whipped cream.