Can you substitute almond flour for white flour?

Written by wendy travolta
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Can you substitute almond flour for white flour?
Use almond flour instead of the bleached white variety. (czarny_bez/iStock/Getty Images)

Almond flour consists of finely ground and blanched almonds. Consumers often appreciate almond flour's dense nutritional profile because it is low in carbohydrates and gluten-free. However, cooks must consider its distinct consistency and flavour when using it to replace white, bleached wheat flour.

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Features and use

Almond flour lends a rich, buttery texture to pastry, breadcrumbs, pie crusts and baked goods without imparting an overbearing almond flavour. The fine, dry, protein-rich powder works most effectively for cakes, pancakes and muffin recipes where equal parts of almond flour can be substituted for white flour. Biscuits prepared with almond flour may necessitate additional baking time to crisp.

Considerations and modifications

Since almond flour is heavier and somewhat coarse, goods baked with almond flour will not rise as well as those baked with white flour. To offset almond flour's flattening effect, extra leavening agents, like baking soda, yeast or baking powder are recommended. Experiment to determine each recipe's appropriate ratio. Otherwise, replace only 75 per cent white flour with almond flour.

Drawbacks

Each commercial almond flour produces slightly different results. Some companies grind almond flour more coarsely or use rougher unpeeled almonds. Doughy, yeast-based breads will not rise properly with any almond flour and chefs cannot use naturally gluten-free almond flour to make pasta, which requires gluten's proteins to bind.

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