There are so many better-for-you flours out there – we’re talking flours made from nuts, whole grains, coconuts, etc. – that you can easily find in your grocery store and have fun experimenting with. Get your cookie, gluten-free, and healthy-cooking fix by stocking up on these six gluten-free baking flours instead of all-purpose.
#1 Almond Flour.
Almond flour is considered the king of gluten-free flours. Besides giving your product a nutty, balanced flavor, the finely ground nut offers added moisture and tenderness to the recipes that use it. It’s a good choice for use in baked goods with a light crumb texture: pancakes, muffins, cakes, etc. You can also use almond flour as a replacement for bread crumbs or to thicken sauces and soups.
#2 Oat Flour.
They make a breakfast overnight in the fridge, they make the creamiest dairy-free milk, and now we’re telling you to use the grain in baking. The best part? You can make it at home by simply blending rolled oats until a fine flour forms. Important to note: Oats in their purest form are gluten-free, but some are processed in a facility with wheat so cross-contamination might be a concern.
#3 Buckwheat Flour.
Do not be fooled by the word “wheat” in this wheat-less grain. Buckwheat, and therefore, buckwheat flour, is gluten-free by nature. Buckwheat flour adds a rich, nutty taste to products, and you’ll find it most commonly used in Japan to make soba noodles, galettes in France, blinis (pancakes) in Eastern Europe, and chapati in various regions of India.
#4 Brown Rice Flour.
Brown rice flour is definitely a smart one to have on hand. Standing alone in a recipe, brown rice flour can make things gummy, chewy, and bland. But, when added to other gluten-free flours (like buckwheat), brown rice flour adds elasticity and structure and lets the other flours’ flavor notes shine. Brown rice flour is almost always necessary for yeast bread and can be used in all baking recipes, especially with pie dough.
#5 Coconut Flour.
Coconut flour is a fine flour, but it can be ultra-absorbent when used alone, usually not leaving much of a crumb texture and rather a dense one at best. Like brown rice flour, coconut flour does wonders when mixed with other gluten-free flours. Coconut flour is great for cookies, muffins, granolas, brownies, and quick breads.
#6 Sorghum Flour.
Sorghum flour is a mild, sweet flour that adds a soft bite to baked goods. It should be used in recipes that do not require a lot of flour; think brownies, peanut butter cookies, and soufflés. When standing alone as the sole flour, it is recommended that sorghum flour is mixed with starches, such as tapioca or potato, for better binding.