When working with gluten-free flours, it’s important to know that each flour has a different property and will behave differently in your recipe. Some flours are flavorful, some hold liquid, and others work well to produce a flaky crust. Learning which flour to use in your recipe will help ensure that the texture, quality and flavor of your end result will be what you envisioned.
You should always test various flours to see which ones you like best and which perform the best in your recipes. Below are a few tips regarding the most common gluten-free flours and ingredients used in creating flour mixtures.
Almond Flour – Almond flour is easily made by blending dry, raw almonds in a high speed blender. You’ll want to blend the almonds just until they turn into a flour-like density. If you blend too much, you’ll end up with almond butter. Almond flour is great for pancakes, cookies, breads and muffins.
Bean Flour – Beans such as chickpeas make a great flour for pastas, crackers, and breads. Just wash the chickpeas and dry them completely in the oven before blending into flour.
Coconut Flour – coconut flour is from the left over pulp of the coconut or by using dried coconut flakes. Coconut flour absorbs liquids really well, making moist textured products. It works well for breads and cakes.
Oat Flour – Steel cut oats can be preceded in a high-powered blender just until you get flour-like consistency. Use oat flour with another gluten-free flour for best results. Oat flour works well for pancakes, brownies and biscuits.
Other Nut Flours – Any dry, raw nut can be used to make flour. Just remember to stop blending or grinding once you reach flour-like consistency, otherwise you’ll end up with a nut butter. Nut flours yield a dense texture to your baking product. They’re also flavorful. Nut flours can be used for cookies, cakes, breads and muffins.
Potato Starch – Potato starch (not potato flour) is often added and mixed with other gluten-free flours to improve texture and flavor of the mix. It can be used as a thickener for soups, stews and gravy.
Quinoa – Quinoa flour makes an excellent addition to other gluten-free flours and works well in breads where a heavier texture is needed.
Rice Flour – Rice flour has the texture of corn starch. It works well as a thickener in your gluten-free flour mixes. It’s also helpful in producing a crispy texture when frying flour-coated foods.
Seed Flour – Dried and ground seeds such as sunflower, flax and chia will act as an egg replace, or binder, when mixed with water. Works well in cobblers and cakes.
Sorghum Flour – Sorghum, a very flavorful flour, is commonly found in breakfast cereals. It is the best gluten-free flour to use for a one-to-one ratio in your baked goods.
Tapioca Flour – This smooth textured flour is also referred to as tapioca starch. It is made from the root of the manioc plant. Tapioca flour must be used in conjunction with another flour to make complete flours for your recipes. It works well in soups, sauces, and pies.
This provides you with introductory information with regard to gluten-free flour and baking mix options. Experiment with combining a few different types of four. Take into consideration the textures and flavors that you desire for your recipes. Try out different mixtures. Once you find one that works well for your recipe(s), remember to notate and use it in grams rather than cups. For example, if a recipe calls for 1 cup of flour, convert that and use 140 grams of your gluten-free flour mixture.
Here are a few basic gluten-free flour blends:
All-purpose gluten-free flour blend:
Use this blend for all your gluten-free
1/2 c. rice flour
1/4 c. tapioca starch/flour
1/4 c. cornstarch or potato starch
High protein gluten-free flour blend:
This blend works best in baked
goods that require elasticity, such as wraps
and pie crusts.
1 1/4 c. bean flour (your choice),
chickpea flour or soy flour
1 c. arrowroot starch, cornstarch
or potato starch
1 c. tapioca starch/flour
1 c. white or brown rice flour
Self-rising gluten-free flour blend:
Use this blend for muffins, scones, cakes,
cupcakes or any recipe that uses baking
powder for leavening.
1 1/4 c. white sorghum flour
1 1/4 c. white rice flour
1/2 c. tapioca starch/flour
2 tsp. xanthan or guar gum
4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt