Flour is often the main ingredient in making cakes, bread and pasta. There are several types of flour available on the market such as the self-raising flour, white plain flour, wholegrain flour, wholemeal flour. Because it is often used in bread making, flour is regarded to be a huge commodity in several countries where bread is a staple food. It has huge demand for people love to consume bread and cakes that need flour to produce them.
Flour is made by grinding cereal grains, roots and seeds. The common way of making flour is through grains that are being grounded using stones called stone mill. It is traditional method of producing flour and results in slightly coarser grain. The stone ground flour may leave some tiny pieces of stone in it which makes it a not so favored method of making flour most especially today. To address the need of people who want to use finer and stone free flour, there are a lot of manufacturers today that are rather using more modern mills which use wind or water to grind the flour. Unifine mill is the most modern mill and it is a high-impact automated mill. All of the flours have germ added into them to prevent the batch from getting sour.
The different types of flour are unbleached flour and plain flour. Unbleached flour is much darner in color and does not undergo the bleaching process. It is considered to relatively better than bleached for it does not contain any chemical. The bleached flour is referred to refined flour and usually contains chemicals.
The plain flour is commonly used in variety of things, but it lacks a leavening agent. Self-raising flour usually contains salt and baking powder so you won’t have to leave any of these ingredients when making cakes and bread.
There are also flours available for individuals that are allergic to gluten. This includes almond flour which is produced from ground almonds, chickpea flour, made from ground chickpeas that are ground, acorn flour, produced from ground acorns and rice flour that is made from finely ground rice.
Make Freshly Milled Flour At Home With Nothing But A Coffee Grinder
Adding freshly ground flour to your bread produces outstanding flavor and superior nutrition compared to store bought flours that may have been milled weeks ago. So what if you want to get in on these benefits but can’t spend $100-$500 on a nice new grain mill? Well if you have a coffee grinder laying around then you’re already set! I recently discovered that a cheap coffee grinder will turn grain into flour no problem. Just follow these steps:
1. ACQUIRE A COFFEE GRINDER.
Chances are you already have one of these in your kitchen. If not, don’t worry, they aren’t very expensive. This is the one I use but there are even cheaper and better reviewed ones that would probably do the trick as well.
2. GET SOME GRAIN
Choose the kind of flour that you want and get the appropriate whole grain to make that flour. For example, if you want to make whole wheat flour then you will need wheat berries. If you want rye flour you will need rye berries. Most whole grains can be turned into flour so feel free to experiment!(Another great advantage of milling your own flour). Many health food stores sell whole grain berries in bulk and at a cheaper price than the equivalent flour(yet another advantage!).
3. POUR SOME BERRIES INTO YOUR GRINDER.
Don’t fill your grinder more than half way if you want an even grind.
For the most part the amount of berries you put in will be the amount of flour you get out. This means it’s easy to grind the exact amount of flour you need without having extra that could be laying around for awhile. I would suggest not filling the grinder more than halfway in order to produce a more even grind.
4. GRIND THE BERRIES
The length of time you grind for will effect the coarseness of your flour. The longer you grind, the more fine your flour will be. The coffee grinder can only get so fine however. The finest level you can achieve is a bit more coarse than fine store bought flour which is one of the drawbacks of using the coffee grinder. One way of getting your flour finer is by sifting it through a fine mesh sifter and then regrinding the larger bits that don’t pass through.
Below are grinding times with pictures of the flour coarseness produced. These photos were done with rye berries but I have experienced similar results using wheat.
It’s no secret flour is a major staple in any kitchen. And yet for many years of our marriage I rarely had it on hand.
As if you needed any further proof that you ought to keep plenty of flour on hand (or in case you do) here’s a list of some things you can do with all purpose flour.
Look below to check out these five fun flour recipes:
- Natural and Safe Playing Dough
- Homemade Glue Paste
- Homemade Clay (Air Dry or Bake)
- DIY Flour Fingerpaint
- Simple and Safe Cloud Dough
Then scroll down to the bottom for eight tasty things to make with flour:
- Flour tortillas
- Pie crust
- Graham Crackers
- Blueberry Buttermilk Pancakes
- Pancake and waffle mix
- Soft pretzels
- Pita bread
- Homemade Buttermilk Biscuits
Homemade Craft Recipes from Flour
Natural and Safe Playing Dough
- 1 cup flour
- 1/2 cup salt
- 1 cup vegetable or fruit stained water
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 2 tablespoons cream of tartar
- Optional: lemon, lime, or orange essential oil
- Optional: use plain water and natural food dyes
Mix flour, salt and cream of tartar in a medium pot. Slowly mix in the oil and water (and food dye if using.)
Cook over medium-low heat, stirring until dough becomes stiffens and pulls from the sides of the pot. This should only take a few minutes.
Turn out onto wax paper and let cool. Knead the playing dough for a couple of minutes until it is the right consistency.
This will make one color dough at a time, repeat to make a second color or more.
Homemade Glue Paste
- 1/2 cup flour
- Cold water
- Add cold water to flour until mixture is as thick as cream.
- Simmer and stir in saucepan for 5 minutes.
This paste is a little messy and takes a while to dry. You can store it in a glass jar and let your kids apply it with a popsicle stick or paint brush.
Store this paste in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Let the glue come to room temperature for easy use.
Homemade Clay (Air Dry or Bake)
- 2 cups flour
- 1 cup salt
- 1 cup hot water
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Combine flour and salt in a large bowl. Add hot water and oil. Mix thoroughly.
Let cool five minutes. Knead five minutes or until smooth and workable.
For air dry: Let your product dry for a minimum of 24 hours. Depending on humidity and temperature, it may take longer.
For baking: Bake on foil-lined sheet at 250 degrees for 1-4 hours, depending on the size of the creation. Once your creation is cool, it can be painted.
Store extra clay in a flour-coated, airtight container in the refrigerator.
Image Source: Public Domain
DIY Flour Finger Paint
- 2 cups flour
- 2 cups cold water
- natural food coloring
Put water into a large bowl. Slowly stir in the flour, a little at time.
Once it’s all mixed together well, divide into small bowls and add desired amount of food coloring. For use on thicker textured paper.
Store paint in air tight container in the refrigerator.
Simple and Safe Cloud Dough
- 4 cups flour
- 1/2 cup vegetable or olive oil
- gel food coloring
Add desired amount of gel food coloring into your vegetable oil and work into the flour in a large bowl until thoroughly mixed. Store in an air tight container.
Eight Tasty Flour Recipes
Of course, flour is most useful for cooking, and there is no shortage of things to make and eat with flour. But here are options that are definitely delicious.
Enjoy! And if you like what you see, subscribe!
Read this before you make a run to the store.
You’re finally ready to bake that special occasion cake (or that don’t-really-need-a-reason cake) when you notice the ingredient list calls for cake flour. Sigh, that’s the one pantry item you haven’t stocked.
Is cake flour really that different from all-purpose flour? Do you really need to buy it before you can bake? The short answers are yes and no. Yes, cake flour gives cakes a fluffier, more tender texture than all-purpose flour. No, you don’t need to buy it: You can easily make cake flour at home with ingredients you already have on hand.
What Is Cake Flour?
Cake flour is a very fine-textured flour with a low protein content (about seven to nine percent compared to all-purpose flour, which has 10 to 12 percent protein). It also has less protein than pastry or Wondra flour. This means less gluten develops when combined with liquid, resulting in a light, soft cake.
It’s best to use cake flour for simply flavored cakes where texture is key, like this Heavenly White Cake or confetti cake. Stick to all-purpose flour for rich chocolate cakes and dense, “wet” cakes like banana or carrot; these need the higher protein content for structure.
How To Make Cake Flour
This simple recipe for cake flour yields about one cup of flour. If you want to make a larger quantity than that, you can either scale up the recipe or refer to this Cake Flour Mix recipe from recipe creator Jessica Daulton.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- Measure out 1 cup of all-purpose flour.
- Remove 2 tablespoons flour from the cup, then add 2 tablespoons cornstarch.
- Sift the flour and cornstarch together through a fine mesh sieve over a bowl, then sift again into a second bowl. The double sift combines the two ingredients especially well, removes any lumps, and incorporates air into the mixture.
Because you’ve added air, your yield for this cake flour may be slightly more than 1 cup, so be sure to measure before baking. Store in an airtight container for about two months.
How to Use Cake Flour
Rememberm unlike self-rising flour, cake flour has no rising agent, so be sure not to leave out the baking soda or powder from your recipe. Unlike Wondra flour, cake flour has not been par-cooked, so it is not safe to eat raw.
Ready to bake? Use your homemade cake flour in this stunning Chiffon Cake or in this classic Angel Food Cake I. You can also try fan favorites like David’s Yellow Cake (over 1,000 five-star reviews!) or this moist Cream Cheese Pound Cake I.
The Spruce / Danielle Moore
|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 1g||2%|
|Saturated Fat 0g||1%|
|Total Carbohydrate 97g||35%|
|Dietary Fiber 3g||12%|
|Total Sugars 0g|
|Vitamin C 0mg||0%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
Self-rising flour is a type of flour often used to make biscuits, cornbread, and quick breads. As a result, it is very popular in certain traditional Southern recipes. This kind of flour has salt and a leavening agent already mixed into it, eliminating the need to add these two ingredients to the recipe—and absolutely no yeast. For this reason, many bakers opt for self-rising flour since a single dry ingredient saves prep and cleanup time.
However, not everyone stocks self-rising flour in their pantry. If a recipe calls for self-rising flour and you only have all-purpose flour on hand, it’s surprisingly easy to make your own self-rising flour at home. All you need is the addition of baking powder and salt. You can scale up the recipe if needed; just be sure to add the proper amount of baking powder and salt per cup of flour. Proper storage is key, too—keep it in an airtight container in a cool, dry place so that the baking powder doesn’t activate prematurely.
Make your own self-rising flour with ingredients you may have in your pantry.
Flour with rolling pin
Rolling pin and white flour on a dark background. Free space for text. Top view.
Photo by: Yulia Naumenko / Getty Images
Yulia Naumenko / Getty Images
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By Regan Cafiso for Food Network Kitchen
Self-rising flour is a staple in many recipes — particularly Southern recipes like biscuits, cobblers and more. It simplifies the baking process by including the leavener and salt right in with the flour, making it handy to have around when you’re running low on baking supplies (or time to assemble it all).
What Is Self-Rising Flour?
Many popular varieties of self-rising flour, like the ubiquitous White Lily brand, are made with bleached, low-protein soft wheat flour, which gives baked goods a super-light texture and tender crumb. In a pinch, however, all-purpose flour makes a fine substitute. It does not matter if it is bleached or unbleached. If you happen to have plain cake flour on hand as well, you can use a 50/50 mix of that and all-purpose for an even closer approximation.
How to Make Self-Rising Flour
Making self-rising flour at home is easy. Just use this basic formula: For every 1 cup of all-purpose flour, add 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon fine salt. Whisk the ingredients thoroughly in a large bowl or put them in a glass jar and shake well. Store your self-rising flour in an airtight container in the pantry. (Be sure to label it, so you know it contains a leavener.) Use within six months or the baking powder will start to lose its potency.
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No matter the size of your pantry, it’s highly likely you have some all-purpose flour hiding on one of the shelves. Maybe you use it regularly for baking, or you keep it on hand for thickening soup or for breading chicken tenders. Or maybe you’ve picked up a giant bag of flour that one time you made cookies for Christmas, and it’s now just sitting sadly in your kitchen, waiting to be put to work.
Fist things first: If you’re unsure your flour is still usable, look at the expiration date. If your all-purpose flour is up to six months past its expiration date, it’s likely still OK to use. But trust your senses here—if the smell or taste seems off in any way, you’re probably better off tossing it. Worst case scenario, you may see bugs crawling in it, in which case, it’s obviously time to toss it (and maybe clean out your pantry).
Flour may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you’re brainstorming things you can make from pantry staples. That’s where we come in! Use this article to jog your memory and come back to classics you’ve forgotten about, or get a few new ideas for ways to use up all-purpose flour.
When was the last time you made biscuits? This low-calorie recipe provides a new twist on Southern-style biscuits. To produce the same flaky deliciousness, we’ve cut out the shortening and used low-fat buttermilk. With this recipe you won’t be able to tell the difference.
Get our recipe for Southern Style Biscuits.
Peanut Butter Blossoms
Cookies are a no-brainer when it comes to using up pantry staples in simple recipes. And you don’t need much more than flour and sugar to dress them up to perfection. Grab that jar of peanut butter and the bag of Hershey’s kisses from your snack drawer and make these holiday favorites that’ll easily be year-round favorites after first bite.
Get our recipe for Peanut Butter Blossom Cookies.
Jelly Thumbprint Cookies
Have a zest for cookie baking, but don’t have Hershey’s kisses or chocolate chips? Use jam as the sweetening element, and make a batch of these festive-looking cookies. You’ll quite literally make a dent on top with your thumb for a spoonful of jelly.
Get our recipe for Jelly Thumbprint Cookies.
Making crepe batter is hard to mess up, even for absolute crepe beginners. The tricky part is ladling just the right amount of batter on a perfectly hot pan—but you’ll get the hang of it after a few tries. Slather them with Nutella and add bananas to the mix for a morning or afternoon sweet treat.
Get our recipe for Banana-Nutella Crepes.
Maybe you’ve thought of making banana bread, but you’re running low on butter? Worry not! This recipe calls for half the amount of butter of other recipes, and supplements the moist texture with Greek yogurt. This healthier alternative will make your breakfast even better.
Get our recipe for Banana Bread.
And here’s something you’ve probably never tried making at home: donuts. What, with all the frying and cutting, it seems like quite a task, right? But here’s one very compelling argument for homemade donuts: you most likely already have all the ingredients you need. Glaze them or not, adorn them with sprinkles or not, you’ll be thrilled you have some hot, freshly fried donuts when you’re done.
Get our recipe for Homemade Donuts.
Pillowy snickerdoodles are another great way to use up flour in your pantry and make yourself happy while doing it. Beyond the basics like butter, sugar, and an egg, you’ll need a dash of spice—and that’s it!
Get our recipe for Snickerdoodle Cookies.
Rosemary Garlic Focaccia
There are few, very few things in life better than homemade focaccia. And lucky for us, there are also very few bread recipes that are easier to make. You’ll feel like you’ve hit the jackpot when the aroma of rosemary, garlic, and olive oil fill your home, and even more so when you start making sandwiches with warm focaccia slices.
Get the recipe from Inspired Taste.
This easy, homemade past recipe can be made with all-purpose flour, or a combination of several different flours (like all-purpose and semolina). But both options work just as well! Fresh pasta is considered quite a project, but one well worth the effort. Use it for dinner immediately, or freeze for up to two weeks. Two glorious weeks of homemade pasta.
Get this recipe from Gimme Some Oven.
Make the basic dough with just a few ingredients, and you have a buttery, flaky canvas for sweet add-ins like blueberries, chocolate chips, caramel apples, and almonds. Eat them right away, or freeze the portioned-out dough for quick, home-baked breakfasts.
Get this recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction.
Grandma’s Irish Soda Bread
You want to make bread, but you don’t have yeast? Well, if you have buttermilk (or the two ingredients you need to make some) you can make a loaf of rustic Irish soda bread. Raisins are a welcome addition, but it’s OK to skip them if you’re out.
Get this recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction.
The classic Indian flatbread is not only tasty but also vegan. Many feel less intimidated by the idea of a flatbread, because it will almost certainly work out enough to be edible. Use it to scoop up some delicious sauce, or turn it into a breakfast wrap with eggs and bacon.
Get this recipe from Minimalist Baker.
Cinnamon Sugar Apple Cake
This low-maintenance cake is the perfect foray into dessert-baking for beginners. It’s made moist by folding apples into the batter, which yields a tender, juicy crumb.
Get this recipe from Pinch of Yum.
Biscotti have the most satisfying crunch to them, which holds up well when they’re immersed in a cup of hot coffee or cocoa. This chocolate-covered version feels even more indulgent and dessert-like, and can stick around your kitchen counter for a few days before it dries out.
Get the recipe from Flour On My Face.
We’re adding this delicious scalloped potatoes recipe here to remind you that all-purpose flour can be used in cooking, too. Think of all the thick, creamy sauces made creamier with a roux—a combo of butter and flour. And in this recipe, the roux makes the base for a cheesy sauce that will coat thinly sliced, baked-till-bubbling potatoes.
Get this recipe from The Girl Who Ate Everything.
Additional reporting by Kelly Gomez.
It’s for More Than Just Macarons
Valentina_G / Getty Images
Almond flour is—to put it as simply as possible—ground almonds.
To be slightly more specific, however, almond flour is blanched, skinned, and ground almonds, which means it’s pale in color and mild in flavor, with none of the bitterness that can come with skins. (That’s also what differentiates almond flour from almond meal, which is ground raw almonds with their skins on.)
Making almond flour is a pretty straightforward process, so it’s actually easy to do at home.
How to Make Almond Flour
Start with blanched, skinned almonds (often sold as slivered almonds) or blanch and skin whole raw almonds yourself. Every 1 ounce of whole almonds will yield about 1/4 cup almond flour. If you’re starting with blanched and skinned almonds, skip ahead to step 5.
- To blanch and skin raw almonds, bring a large pot of water to a boil. When the water is boiling, add the almonds.
- Boil for about 1 minute.
- Drain and rinse with cold water until cool enough to handle. The skins will slip right off, so simply pull them off and discard.
- Lay the almonds on a clean kitchen towel or several layers of paper towels and let sit to dry thoroughly (at least several hours and up to overnight).
- Put the blanched, skinned, dry almonds in a food processor. Pulse until they’re ground into a sand-like texture.
Note: Almond “flour” will never be as fine as wheat flour. The nuts will actually turn to almond butter instead of powder, so only grind it as fine as sand, and don’t try to get it as fine as wheat flour.
What Does Almond Flour Taste Like?
Since the nuts are blanched before they’re ground, the flour doesn’t have a very strong, distinctive almond flavor, but it’s not completely lacking in it, either. The best way to describe it may be to say that it adds a gentle, slightly nutty aroma to what you’re making. When used as the main ingredient, an identifiable almond note will no doubt come through.
Unlike flour milled from grains, it’s okay to eat almond flour raw, so go ahead and taste a bit of it if you’re interested.
Cooking and Baking With Almond Flour
In recipes that don’t depend on gluten to create structure (i.e. risen bread and other things made from yeasted doughs), you can often substitute almond flour one-for-one for wheat flour. It’s particularly good for simple desserts such as cookies or bars. The texture of the final item will often be heavier and the batter may require extra liquid, but a bit of experimenting can often yield excellent results.
First-time testers can start by replacing 1/4 of the wheat flour with almond flour. It’s great this way in pancakes, scones, muffins, cookies, and even puddings. Adding almond flour to brownies makes them extra fudgy as well.
If you’re unsure about ratios, use a recipe specifically created to use almond flour, such as these almond flour biscuits, almond flax muffins, or this almond ring cake.
Almond flour doesn’t behave exactly like wheat flour and can’t be used one-for-one in all recipes. For yeasted bread and other baked goods that depend on the structural integrity that gluten provides, almond flour can only be used to replace a small portion of wheat flour.
Almond flour works very well as a breading agent, like when coating chicken or pork cutlets to pan fry. It’s also an excellent way to thicken soups or stews—simply sprinkle and stir in—or as a breadcrumb substitute in meatloaf and meatballs.
Why People Use Almond Flour
Almond flour is gluten-free, which makes it appealing if you have celiac disease. It also works for certain diets. Almond flour also tastes good and creates a distinctively chewy element to baked goods (like macarons!), which is why many cooks love to find ways to incorporate it into their repertoires.
The Limits of Almond Flour
Since almond flour is gluten-free, it can’t be used as if it were wheat flour—gluten is the protein in wheat that creates structure in bread and the bread-like texture in other baked goods.
How to Store Almond Flour
Because almond flour is simply ground almonds, it can go rancid much faster than grain flours. Store it in the fridge, or even in the freezer, and use it within a few weeks.