Alternatives to wheat flour

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If you don’t use the correct substitutes when replacing wheat flour in gluten-free recipes, your cookies may come out of the oven flat and tasting like rubber.  Or worse, crumbling with the texture of sawdust.  Below is a list of the most useful gluten free flours that can be used when substituting for wheat flour.

Almond Meal Flour is made from whole almonds that have been finely ground into a powder.  It is used in cookies, cakes and other desserts.  Be sure to store almond meal flour in the freezer.

Amaranth Flour has a very high protein and fiber content and add a nutty flavor to gluten-free baked goods.   It is most commonly used in combination with other flours to make breads, pasta, pancakes and other recipes.

Brown Rice Flour pack a bit more of a nutritional punch than white rice flour.  Use this flour in muffins and breads when a heartier product is desired.

Buckwheat Flour despite it’s name is not related to wheat and is gluten-free. Buckwheat is used throughout Europe to make pancakes and is a fantastic alternative for gluten-free cooking, especially when used to make breakfast cereal and gluten-free breads.

Coconut Flour is a delicious and healthy alternative flour that has a high fiber content and is highly absorbent.  It provides a natural sweetness and as moisture to baked goods.

Corn Flour compared to cornmeal has a blander taste, as well as a lighter and finer feature when used in baking.

Cornstarch is made by grinding up the starch (carbohydrate) portion of a corn grain and turning it into a very fine powder. Cornstarch is typically used as a thickening agent, such as for soups, sauces and stews.  it is also used in pre-made gluten-free flour bends because it creates a smoother texture.

Garbanzo Bean Flour (Chickpea Flour) is like all bean flours in that it is high in protein and fiber content. As opposed to rice, tapioca and potato flours, bean flours more closely mimic the texture of white wheat flour when used in baked products.

Guar Gum is made from guar beans and has eight times the thickening ability of cornstarch.  It works well for thickening sauces and is often used to make gluten-free breads.

Potato Flour is made by grinding potato roots and subsequently removing the fibrous material.  Potato flour is most commonly used to thicken sauces and is generally included n gluten-free flour blends because it add moisture to baked goods.

Potato Starch is not the same as potato flour. It is similar to Tapioca Starch.

Sorghum Flour is a millet like grain and add as strong flavor to gluten-free baked goods.

Tapioca Flour and Tapioca Starch are the same thing.  It can add chewiness to baked goods and is a wonderful thickening agent.  Tapioca flour is know for brining one of the more flavorless gluten-free flours so it won’t affect the last of your dish.

Teff Flour is a nutritional power house and has a mild nutty flavor and a very soft fine texture.  It works well in cookies and pie crusts.

White Rice Flour is made from finely ground white rice and is most often used a as replacement for wheat flour in gluten-free breads.  Rice flour can have a gritty texture and needs to be mixed with a binder and other gluten-free flours for successful baking.

Xanthan Gum is used as a binder and to add volume or fluffiness to gluten-free breads and other baked goods.  It is made from the fermentation of sugar by the organism Xanthomonas Capestris.

Be sure that all flours you purchase are labeled gluten-free.