Chocolate cakes, warm biscuits, and donuts, pancakes, and soft cookies – mmmm! Unfortunately, because there 76g of carbohydrates found in 100 grams of all-purpose flour, these classic baked goods are not ideal for a low-carb or keto diet.
When using low-carbohydrate flours, you may enjoy your favorite desserts, just the low-carb varieties!
What types of flour are allowed in low carb? This post discusses the many low carbohydrate flour options you can use in low carb and keto diets, and how to use them correctly.
It is definitely not easy to replace carbohydrate-rich flours such as all-general-purpose, corn, rice, and wheat flour with a low-carbohydrate flour 1 to 1.
Because of the low-carb flours different properties, they are usually used together with other ingredients such as psyllium husks, xanthan gum, and protein powder to reach the wanted texture.
Due to this, it is probably best to first learn how to use low-carb flours, using ready-made flour recipes. This will give you an overview of how you can make your favorite deserts with low-carbs.
Low Carb Flour for Baking
Sunflower Seed or Pumpkin Seed Flour
Sunflower seed flour and pumpkin seed flour are ideal alternatives ffor people with nut allergies. These seed flours are rich in vitamins and minerals such as vitamin E, copper, thiamine, selenium and phosphorus and contain relatively few net carbohydrates (less than 5 net carbohydrates per 30 grams).
Tips for baking with sunflower and pumpkin seed flour:
- The sunflower flour gives baked goods a moist texture. Use more flour and less liquid. Find the ideal ratio by adding small amounts of seed flour and liquid until you get the right consistency.
- You can replace almond flour 1 to 1 with sunflower or pumpkin seed flour.
How should you store sunflower flour and pumpkin seed flour correctly? Sunflower and pumpkin seed flour are much more stable than linseed flour, so you can store them in a cool, dark pantry.
The disadvantage of these flour alternatives is that they are slightly more expensive than the more popular low carbohydrate flours and are much harder to find. It would be much easier to make sunflower or pumpkin seed flour yourself with a food processor or coffee grinder.
Linseed (or flax seeds) are highly nutritious and rich in vitamin B1, copper, ALA (vegetable omega-3 fatty acids) and lignans (vegetable compounds that help fight cell damage caused by free radicals).
Two tablespoons of ground linseed contain almost 70 calories, 4.5 grams of fat, 5 grams of total carbohydrates, 4 grams of fiber, 3 grams of protein and 1 gram of net carbohydrates.
Its earthy taste makes linseed flour perfect for bread, muffins, cookies, crackers, nutty cakes and scones.
This low-carb flour is used in keto recipes rather as a binder or egg substitute. Unfortunately, this method is not suitable for recipes that require a significant amount of eggs.
To make a linseed egg, mix 1 tablespoon of ground linseed flour with 3 tablespoons of water and let it swell.
How should linseed flour be stored? Linseed flour can become rancid very quickly. It is therefore best to store it in the refrigerator in an airtight bag or container. For the best taste, buy whole golden linseed and grind them in an electric coffee grinder just before use.
Almond Flour – the All-Purpose Flour for Low-Carb
Almond flour is one of the best low-carb alternatives to regular flour and is quite often used in keto recipes. Per 100 grams, almond flour contains 12 grams of fat, 36 grams of protein and only 4 grams of net carbohydrates. Due to its high fat content and gluten deficiency, you may need additional eggs or baking powder to give your baked goods more structure.
The typical almond flour is made from blanched almonds (without the shell) and is very finely ground. It gives baked goods a slightly sweet taste and moist texture, making it ideal for low-carb cakes, biscuits, bread and cake bases.
Almond flour is available in supermarkets and grocery stores, but you can find it at the lowest price if you buy it in bulk online. Make sure that you buy the finest blanched almond flour, which does not have any dark spots. The finer the almond flour is ground, the finer the consistency of your baked goods will be and the easier they will rise.
Tips for baking with almond flour:
- Substitution ratio: 100 grams of almond flour : 125 grams of wheat flour
- Use a little less fat and liquids because of the high fat content of almonds.
- Add another egg or half an egg to give breads and muffins more structure.
- The addition of a raising agent (e.g. baking powder or baking soda) can be useful.baking dough or pancake batter should not be diluted too much, but be a little thicker.
- Bake at a low temperature and for a longer time.
- Almond flour can quickly turn brown. Aluminum foil can help here.
- Let the finished baked goods always cool down quite well. This makes low-carb crackers and cake bases crispier, while muffins and cakes have a better texture and stick together better.
How should you store almond flour? Since almond flour can quickly become rancid, it is best to store it in the refrigerator or freezer. Most almond flour comes in an airtight bag, but you can also use an airtight container.
The only problem with using almond flour is that you can easily eat too much of it. A cup of almond flour, for example, consists of about 90 almonds – a quantity that someone would rarely eat all at once. Although almonds have many health benefits, eating large amounts of fats and phytates in almonds can aggravate existing health problems.
Coconut Flour for Pancakes and Popular Cakes
Coconut flour is made from dried coconut meat after most of the fat has been extracted to produce coconut oil. 100 grams of coconut flour contains 348 calories, 12g fat, 16g protein, 22g carbohydrates and 35g fiber. Due to its high fiber content, this low-carbohydrate flour is perfect for anyone who cares about their healthy digestion.
Tips for baking with coconut flour:
- Just like almond flour, coconut flour cannot replace wheat flour 1:1 because it absorbs liquids like a sponge. The substitution ratio is: 150 grams of coconut flour : 500 grams of wheat flour
- Use six eggs and 240 ml of liquid for every 120 grams of coconut flour.coconut flour can be baked at the same temperature as other recipes, no adjustments are necessary.
- The pastry thickens after a few minutes. If you prepare low-carb waffles, for example, leave the dough aside for a few minutes. This way you will end up with firmer and less crumbly waffles.
When almond flour and coconut flour are combined, the best ratio is 3:1 almond flour to coconut flour. By combining these low carbohydrate flours, you can exactly imitate the all-purpose flour without having to add extra eggs. Just make sure you keep the liquid ingredients in the same ratio as the coconut flour, as the coconut flour still needs the extra moisture.
Even if you don’t like the taste of coconut, you can still try baking with coconut flour, as the taste can easily be masked by other strong flavors. In sweet baked goods, for example, vanilla, chocolate and cocoa powder help to neutralize the coconut taste. For savory dishes, add some garlic or onion powder.
How should you store coconut flour? Since coconut flour absorbs moisture like a sponge, it is important to store it in an airtight bag or container. Keep it in a cool, dark place in your pantry, not in the refrigerator or freezer, to avoid damage from moisture.
Walnut Flour and Other Types of Nut Flour
You can grind almost any nut to obtain a flour-like consistency and thus reduce the carbohydrate content in your recipes.
Walnut flour, for example, can be used in many recipes as a substitute for almond flour.
Other nut flours you can experiment with are hazelnut flour, pecan flour, macadamia nut flour and pistachio flour. Each of these gives your baked goods a unique taste, so choose carefully.
It is best to store nut flours in the refrigerator or freezer.
Other Low Carbohydrate Flour Alternatives for the Keto Diet
If you prefer to use other flour alternatives, here is a list of some lesser used options:
Soy flour is made from ground soybeans. It is similar to coconut flour because it is quite dry and easily absorbs moisture. It also contains more protein than the keto flours mentioned above and is an excellent source of fiber. By buying organic soy flour, you can avoid GMO soybeans and the pesticides that are commonly used.
Other Bean Flour
There are many types of bean flour you can try. Flours made from chickpeas or fava beans are excellent for low-carbohydrate products.
Sesame seed flour is a great alternative to all-purpose flour. It tastes great in both sweet and savory recipes and is especially good for keto bread. By using sesame flour with psyllium husks, you can make your favorite baked goods lighter and looser. Like coconut flour, sesame flour also absorbs a lot of moisture.
Other Essential Ingredients for Baking and Cooking Keto
For a good result it is not only important to use the right flour. There are also some other ingredients that are an essential part of many low-carb recipes as they provide the properties that low-carb flours lack.
Whey Protein, Casein Protein, or Protein Protein Powder
Protein powder is a useful ingredient in low-carb baking because it has a similar binding effect to gluten, an essential property that is missing in low-carbohydrate flours. For this reason, protein powder can give you the consistency you are looking for in a cake or bread.
Flea seed husk powder (Latin psyllium) is used in medicine as an intestinal cleanser. In the kitchen it is usually used as a thickening agent, which gives bread, cakes, and tarts a nice crumb-like texture. In fact, a psyllium bread is hardly distinguishable from normal wheat bread because of its whole grain structure and taste. Psyllium husks should always be used with another low-carb flour as they are very high in fiber and can cause digestive problems.
Mostly used as a thickening agent, Xanthan gum can be used to give stews, ice cream, and other baked goods the right consistency.
This post discusses many low carb flour alternatives you can use in low carb and keto diets, and tips on how to use them effectively. From almond flour and walnut flour to coconut flour and sunflower seed flour, there are many great low carb alternatives that can be used.
Have you tried any of these low carb flour alternatives? What are your experiences?
Thanks for reading,