White flour starts as a healthy wheat grain until it’s bleached. Once the wheat grain goes through mechanical grinding, most of the nutritional value gets lost.
It’s a good thing there are other healthy types of flour you can choose.
When you cook with a healthier type of flour, you get to enjoy the grain’s natural fiber and nutrients. Beneficial substances like chromium, magnesium, and biotin seep into your food.
Alternative flours also come in handy when you have a gluten allergy. Root vegetables and nut flours are naturally gluten-free and easily digestible.
Move aside white flour. There are new alternatives in town! Check out the five healthy types of flour in this guide for health-conscious cooking.
1. Topping the List of Healthy Types of Flour Is Coconut Flour
Coconut flour is paleo and gluten-free. It’s made by drying out the meat of the coconut then grinding it into fine powder.
Coconut flour is a lot higher in fat than traditional white flour. Yet, its other nutrients make up for that. This flour opts as a good source of fiber, protein, and iron.
It’s perfect for those on high-protein, low-carbohydrate nutrition plans. Use it for cooking savory meals and sweet desserts.
2. Quinoa Flour
The quinoa seed comes from the amaranth family. The flour comes from grinding quinoa seeds into fine powder.
This grain has anti-inflammatory benefits on the body. It’s also packed with protein, fiber, and iron. You can cook with it the same way you cook with wheat flour—in cakes, pancakes, and bread.
Quinoa flour is also gluten-free and gut-friendly, similar to the health benefits of yam flour
3. Oat Flour
Oat flour is a whole-grain, healthy flour made from ground oats. You can buy it pre-ground or make it at home by pulsing oats in the food processor.
Oat flour is protein and fiber-dense and tastes great in cookies and muffins. Because it has a naturally sweet flavor, you don’t have to add a lot of sugar.
Keep in mind store-bought oat flour comes glutenous and gluten-free. Some oats get contaminated when packaged in facilities that contain wheat and rye. Make sure you read the label or make your flour at home.
4. Chickpea Flour
Hungry for an omelet but don’t like eggs? Use Chickpea flour. This versatile flour comes from the chickpea as known as the garbanzo bean.
You simply grind it down into power.
Although chickpea flour is naturally gluten-free, it binds similarly to gluten. It helps sturdy cake, muffin, and bread batter. You can also batter meat with it and get a good crisp when you fry it.
5. Whole Wheat Flour
Almost every baked good you buy off the shelf has wheat flour in it. Wheat flour comes by grinding whole wheat kernels into powder. Grinding the entire kernel preserves the nutrients in the flour—folate, fiber, protein.
Wheat does contain gluten, so if you have celiacs, wheat flour isn’t for you.
Try the Alternatives
These healthy types of flour aren’t the only alternatives to white, but they’re a great start. Try cooking with a different flour for a few weeks and see the difference.
Want more healthy-living tips like this? Take a peek into our food guides for the latest low-cal hacks for food and desserts.