Alternative Gluten-Free Flours
Nutrition Blog

Alternative Gluten-Free Flours

With the popularity of gluten-free eating, either due to celiac disease, non-celiac gluten sensitivity, or personal preference, food companies for made tremendous leaps toward providing for this market. As gluten-free diets continue to trend, so do the different flour offerings. Most of these flours are not intended to be used as a 1:1 replacement for wheat flour, as their properties are not the same. It takes a learning curve to get used to the different characteristics and ratios for the types flours. However, some have some amazing health benefits, flavors, and can combine well with nut and rice flours to produce products such as quick breads, cookies, brownies, pancakes, and smoothies.

Another amazing benefit of some of the alternative flours is the sustainability aspect. Imperfect fruits and vegetables, such as bananas and sweet potatoes, that would otherwise be rejected for sale, can be utilized to make these flours.

Banana Flour:

  • Unripe green bananas that have been peeled, sliced, dehydrated, and ground
  • Higher starch content, can closely mimic grainbased flour
  • Use 30% less banana flour than suggested for best results
  • Great source of resistant starchànot digested in small intestineà less insulin responseà lower rise in blood sugar. Resistant starch acts as prebiotic, producing shortchain fatty-acids, important for digestive health.
  • Thought to be good for irritable bowel syndrome and LowFODMAP diet

Sweet Potato Flour

  • Sweet potatoes dried and milled into naturally sweet flour, used in sweet or savory recipes, great with chocolate and spices
  • Rich in fiber, vitamins A and C
  • Amount of sugar in recipe can be reduced due to natural sweetness of potato
  • Great as a thickener for gravies and sauces
  • If recipe contains baking soda, can turn green
  • For best results, use 25% sweet potato flour, reduce liquid by 15%25%
  • If using only sweet potato flour, cook at lower temperature

Pumpkin Flour

  • Seeds removed (not part of flour), dry flesh, grind to fine powder in food processor
  • Great flavor for Fall baked goods
  • Shouldn’t be used as sole replacement for wheat flour; replace up to 25% of the flour and use less liquid, similar to sweet potato flour

Wine Flour

  • Juice pressed out of wine grapes (not used in flour), skins are dried and ground into a fine powder.
  • High fiber and protein content, making it a good supplement to recipes, not a good replacement
  • Great for thickening and sauces, stews, rub for steaks, white wine flour goes well with fruits
  • Used similar to cocoa powder in baking recipes, ratio if 1:8 (wine flour : traditional flour)
  • Awesome antioxidant benefits

Coconut Flour

  • From dried and ground defatted coconut meat
  • Highfiber, low-carbohydrate, with sweet and nutty flavor
  • Can replace flour in coatings for chicken and fish
  • When baking, 1/3 cup coconut flour in place of 1 cup grainbased flour, extra liquid needed
  • Recipes that work best: pancakes, muffins, quick breads

Coconut Flour Pancakes

Ingredients:

  • 4 Eggs
  • 3 Tbsp Oil
  • 1/4 cup Milk
  • 1/4 cup Organic Coconut Flour
  • 1 Tbsp Sugar
  • 1/4 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Baking Powder

Instructions:

  1. Preheat a skillet to medium or medium-high heat.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together eggs, oil and milk until well combined.
  3. In a separate bowl sift coconut flour, sugar, salt and baking powder.
  4. Add dry to wet and thoroughly mix until there are no lumps.
  5. Ladle 2 Tbsp to 1/4 cup batter per pancake onto a hot skillet. Cook until bubbles begin to form on the top, about 4 minutes, then flip and cook on the second side.

Recipe courtesy of bobsredmill.com