When you first try to cook gluten free you may easily run into a few problems. There is more to baking gluten free products than just changing from one type of flour to another. Gluten free flour works differently and this has to be taken into account.
Gluten is a protein found in flour that has a sticky substance to it, it binds your ingredients together. Along with containing binding properties gluten works to keep your cakes and cookies moist. Many cooks often complain that their gluten free cakes and breads are too dry!
One important feature to note about gluten free flour is that it is heavier than traditional flour. For this reason you may find cooking with this type of flour easier to achieve if you weigh your ingredients instead of measuring them out.
You will also notice that gluten free flours tend to absorb liquid more quickly, so increasing the amounts of liquid is recommended.
Replacement Flour Choices:
Potato Starch – this is wonderful to use as a thickening agent for sauces and soups. When using in a baked recipe only use half the amount.
Tapioca Flour – this flour produces a great texture and is suited for breads.
Corn Flour – use for pancakes, waffles, muffins and cornbreads.
Soy Flour – this flour contains high amounts of protein and fat. It also has a nutty flavour and is suited for baking brownies, cakes with fruits and nuts, and for any product where you want a smooth texture.
Cornstarch – you may already use this and it is best suited for thickening sauces, gravies and soups.
Brown Rice Flour – contains tons of nutrients and has a nutty flavour. It is perfect for making cookies, cakes and breads.
White Rice Flour – has a very fine texture and doesn’t have any unwanted flavours. You can use this flour mixed with other flours such as brown rice or even almond flour.
Almond Flour – use this flour when making your holiday treats that need a wonderful almond flavour. Again use this mixed with other flours to reach the desired quantity for your recipe.
When using new flours you will need to experiment and make note of how your cakes, cookies and breads turn out. If they require more flavour try adding brown rice flour or even almond flour. For moister baked goods use a little more liquid or include applesauce or yogurt in your recipe.
If your cakes or breads don’t turn out quite right, don’t despair you can always turn them into breadcrumbs!