Substituting wheat flour in a recipe can be tricky, but today, that’s going to change. Whether it’s because of food allergies, dietary restrictions, or any other reason, finding wheat-free or gluten-free alternatives can be overwhelming, especially with so many false products flooding the market nowadays. Don’t worry though, our article will present you with the best wheat flour substitute list you need to start baking.
Luckily, there are various flours that can fill in for wheat flour as both a healthy and tasteful substitute. These may be derived from vegetables, fruits, roots, rice, seeds, and more. No matter the type of baking you’re doing, expect to blend some flour substitutes since it can be hard to nail the exact taste of wheat with a single alternative.
This is because certain flours have a starchy or gritty taste, or even lack flavor altogether. For example, if you use grain-free flours (such as coconut or almond flours) alone, they can taste flat and inconsistent. But when you mix it with arrowroot or tapioca flour, you’ll get a flavorful all-purpose substitute.
Keep reading the list below to learn about # substitutes you can use to bake wheat-free or gluten-free goodies. If you are rushing for the time you can also download our list in pdf here for future reference
What Can I Use Instead Of Whole Wheat Flour
Versatile and easy to work with, almond flour is made out of almonds that have been blanched and then finely ground to produce flour with a light, fluffy texture. There’s also unblanched almond flour that’s made from almonds with their skin still intact.
Additionally, there’s almond meal, which is basically the same as almond flour only ground more coarsely. If you have whole almonds at home, you can make either type of almond flour in simple steps.
Almond flour is packed with protein, vitamin E, and unsaturated fat. You can use almond flour instead of breadcrumbs or in place of white flour in baked desserts such as brownies. Almond sugar cookies, muffins, pie crusts, and cornbread are all examples of delicious foods where you can incorporate almond flour.
Amaranth flour is gluten-free and made from the seed of the Amaranth plant. The seed of this leafy vegetable is a pseudo-grain that can be milled to obtain a nutritious flour with high protein content for baking.
Amaranth is also rich in fiber and contains calcium, potassium, iron, phosphorus, vitamin A, and vitamin C. It has an earthy or grassy taste and it’s quite heavy, so you’ll probably need to mix it with about 3 or 4 parts of other flours with a lighter texture.
Also called African spinach, Chinese spinach, Indian spinach, elephant’s ear, the word Amaranth comes from the word amaranthine which translates into “undying” or “unfading”. This flour was part of a very ancient civilization of the pre-Columbian Aztecs and now continues to be used in recipes for pasta and bread.
To prevent the fatty acids in Amaranth flour from turning rancid, store it in the fridge inside a tightly-sealed glass jar.
Arrowroot flour is made from the root of a tropical plant. Due to the fact that it’s tasteless and turns clear when cooked, this flour is great for thickening pie fillings, thickening clear sauces, and whipping glossy glazes.
Arrowroot flour is a gluten-free starch that lacks protein but packed with carbohydrates. You can use it in place of cornstarch, but you’ll need to add a less amount (about 2 teaspoons of arrowroot flour for every 3 teaspoons of cornstarch).
Compared to wheat flour, arrowroot flour isn’t as nutritious. It also doesn’t mix very well with dairy, producing a slimy concoction.
However, arrowroot starch is high in soluble and insoluble fibers, so it’s an excellent substitute for wheat flour when baking healthy biscuits, bread, cakes, pancakes, bagels, and cereals. The resulting creations are easily digestible so they’re very good for grown-ups and little children too.
Banana flour is made from unripe green bananas. These bananas are dried and ground in a mill to produce a flour that tastes like bran instead of tasting like bananas.
As a wheat-free and gluten-free flour, you can use banana flour for all sorts of baking and cooking purposes, as well as a thickener for sauces, soups, and filling. As a rule of thumb, add 25% less banana flour than the recipe suggests for wheat flour.
While barley flour is free of wheat, it does contain a small amount of gluten. It has hints of a nutty flavor and is packed with enough fiber to keep your digestive system in optimum metabolic sync.
Although it’s rarely used to make bread on its own (except for unleavened bread), barley flour is great for making bread when paired with another grain flour. You can also use barley flour to thicken and flavor soups or stews.
Barley flour is quite versatile, so you can mix it with other flours in recipes for making cakes, biscuits, pastry, dumplings, and more. Barley and its flour help prevent cardiovascular diseases in post-menopausal women.
Black bean flour is a fantastic option if you’re looking for a high-fiber substitute to use instead of wheat flour. It works great in making gluten-free (and often vegan) cookies, brownies, and truffles.
This particular flour is best to use in chocolate-based baked goods because the chocolate taste can effectively mask the taste of black beans.
Compared to white rice flour, brown rice flour is quite heavier. It also offers a higher nutritional value than white since it’s milled from unpolished brown, and contains more fiber content due to the presence of the bran of the brown rice.
Brown rice flour has a distinct texture that’s a bit the grainy side. Additionally, it gives a slightly nutty flavor, which may or may not be noticeable depending on the ingredients you pair it with.
Because of its heavier texture, brown rice flour is almost always used after mixing with other lighter flours. It’s also best used when fresh, so avoid buying brown rice flour in bulk and store what you have in an airtight container.
Buckwheat flour is made from buckwheat seeds. Despite the name (which may be scary to some folks), buckwheat flour isn’t a form of wheat. It’s actually a product of rhubarb where the seeds of the plant are ground to create flour.
Buckwheat flour is gluten-free and works rather well in place of wheat flour. It boosts the count of friendly bacteria residing in the gut so it supports your immune system.
Buckwheat flour is also rich in protein and fiber, offering a delicious nutty/earthy taste that benefits a lot of dishes. These include waffles, pasta, French galettes, pancakes, and pound cake-type cakes.
Cassava flour is made from cassava (also referred to as yucca), which is a starchy root vegetable. It’s a fantastic choice if you need a basic flour for blending that’s also rich in fiber.
Cassava flour is a carb-heavy flour that works well in making all sorts of baked goods. While it shares some similarities with wheat four, it’s not as grainy or gritty as other alternative flours.
Cassava flour is not to be confused with tapioca flour that’s extracted from cassava root (we’ll talk about it in a few minutes).
Chia flour is made from ground chia seeds. It’s highly nutritious, which should come as no surprise since chia seeds are often called a “superfood”. These tiny seeds contain Omega 3, fiber, calcium, and protein.
If you can’t find chia flour easily, just put chia seeds in a processor and grind up some at home. Free of wheat and gluten, when you use chia flour in baking, you may need to increase the amount of liquid and the cooking time.
Chickpea flour is a sturdy and dense flour that’s rich in protein and fiber content, which means it’s pretty filling. Made from ground dried garbanzo beans, chickpea flour is excellent to use when you need to add texture or hold ingredients together.
It works well for both sweet and savory goods including crepes, bread, pancakes, tortillas, cookies, muffins, dumplings, and flatbreads. Chickpea flour offers a nutty, earthy taste that not everyone is a fan of.
Another wheat flour substitute that’s gluten-free is coconut flour. Not only does coconut flour contain 5 times the fiber content found in brown rice flour, but it also has protective fats with antiviral, antimicrobial, and antifungal properties.
Coconut flour is a highly absorbent flour that you get when coconut pulp has been thoroughly dried and then ground. It bakes quite differently from wheat flour and other flour substitutes, absorbing a lot of moisture and forming a thicker, heavier texture. This is why it doesn’t work very well for one-to-one substitutions.
Instead, coconut flour needs more wet ingredients or eggs to perform similarly. Consequently, this flour is perfect for quick types of bread that feature a lot of wet ingredients, such as banana bread.
Coconut flour does yield baked goods that are light and fluffy, but you won’t need to add as much as you’d add regular flour. Generally speaking, you should use about ¼ to ⅓ less coconut flour than wheat flour.
Most people like how coconut flour tastes in muffins, pound cakes, or pancakes compared to the usual whole grain flour. Coconut flour also serves well as a nicely-flavored thickening agent when you’re making soups, stews, casseroles, and gravies.
Moreover, coconut flour smells delightful and has a long shelf life. It can last for up to a year in the fridge.
Contrary to popular belief, coffee flour doesn’t taste like coffee because it’s made from the discarded coffee cherry fruit that lacks the flavor of coffee but has high nutritional value.
The coffee fruit is ground to create a flour that’s high in fiber, low in caffeine, low in fat, high in iron, and higher in potassium than bananas.
Also known as cornstarch, cornflour is another wheat-free and gluten-free substitute that’s often used as a thickening agent when making soups, sauces, or whipping a light batter for coating chicken, meat, and fish.
With twice the thickening capacity of regular flour, cornflour is milled from corn to form a fine, white powder. If you wish to make cornbread, muffins, tortilla, or polenta, then cornflour would be an excellent choice.
Cornstarch does have a somewhat bland taste, so you may want to consider using it in a mix with other flavorful ingredients. conjunction with other ingredients that will impart flavor to the recipe.
Keep in mind, however, that some types of cornflour are produced by milling wheat. These are labeled “wheat corn flour”.
Wheat-free and gluten-free, hemp flour is made from ground hemp seeds. It offers a mild, nutty flavor and requires refrigeration after opening.
Made from a legume that belongs to the same plant family as peanuts, lupin glour is a wheat-free and gluten-free substitute for whole wheat flour. It has high protein and fiber content while being low in fat.
However, lupin flour contains the same protein that triggers allergic reactions in peanuts and legumes (for example, soybeans). This means that lupin flour is unsuitable for people allergic to peanuts or legumes.
Millet flour is made from millet, which is part of the small-seeded grass family. Millet is commonly used in many African and Asian countries as a cereal, yielding a flour with a mild, nutty flavor when ground.
Millet flour has a wide range of cooking and baking applications. You can use it to thicken soups, sauces, make flatbread, and griddle cakes.
Additionally, it’s great for quick bread and muffin recipes as well as pancakes and waffles. Be careful not to use too much of this flour though, otherwise, it’ll give your baked goods a starchy taste and a coarse texture.
Millet flour comes with several health benefits since it contains vitamin B complex and is particularly rich in minerals including iron, potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus. Millet flour is also easy to digest thanks to its high fiber content.
Unfortunately, millet flour tends to go bad quickly if not stored properly, so it’s always a smart idea to grind the required quantity just before use.
Oat flour can easily pass as one the best wheat flour substitutes of all time because of how convenient it is to use. If there are oats in your pantry, then you have oat flour – as simple as that!
Oat flour is wheat-free, but it’s not entirely gluten-free. It also contains a decent amount of protein and fiber, along with a mild flavor and tender texture.
While some oat flour is certified gluten-free, they still contain avenin, which is a similar protein to gluten. Since it’s very versatile, you can use oat flour in tons of recipes including protein bars, cookies, pancakes, and cakes.
Additionally, oat flour is known to absorb liquids more than other flours, so increasing the ratios of liquid ingredients in any recipe may be required. Note that oat flour can go rancid rather quickly, so either make your own at home, buy in small batches and use promptly, or store it in the fridge/freezer.
Not to be confused with potato starch flour, potato flour delivers an intense potato flavor and has a heavy texture. It’s typically made from the entire potato while only the starch is used to make potato starch flour.
Potato flour is wheat-free and gluten-free, adding a creamy, earthy richness to your baked goods. It does tend to go bad quickly, so we don’t recommend bulk buying.
As we just mentioned above, potato starch flour is fine white flour that’s made from potato starch. It offers a faint potato flavor that totally disappears in recipes.
Potato starch flour can help bind ingredients together, but be sure not to use too much when making muffins, bread, or any other baked good. Otherwise, your creations will turn out crumbly.
A strongly flavored flour, rye flour is usually dark in color (this one has more fiber than light rue flour) and made from rye kernels. It has no wheat but contains a small amount of gluten. You can use it in recipes for bread, muffins, and pancakes.
Tapioca flour is a starch that’s made from the root of the cassava plant. Once ground, it yields a fine, white flour with a soft, light texture.
You can use tapioca flour to thicken pie fillings and make all sorts of baked goods. Try not to use too much of this flour in your recipes, otherwise, you’ll be left with a chalky aftertaste.
Wheat-free and gluten-free, tapioca flour is a resilient flour, so it should be fine storing at room temperature.
There you have it, our detailed list of the best wheat flour substitutes that’ll have you cooking and baking healthier and more nutritious goods. Don’t forget to download our Best Wheat Flour Substitute List You Need to Start Baking list for future references.