If you are on a gluten-free diet, coconut and almond flours must be part and parcel of your pastry goods. Other than the gluten-free card, these two types of flour have shared several similarities. Just to give you a teaser of what to expect, they are both grain-free and are recommended for low-carb and keto diets. However, you should also know that coconut flour and almond flour have more differences than similarities. If you have been wondering what their differences are, it’s time to buckle up! We have prepared a comprehensive guide on coconut vs almond flour with everything you need to know about these types of flour. And by everything, we are leaving no stone unturned to get you all the information you need to know.
What is Coconut Flour?
Coconut flour is prepared from finely ground coconut meat. It is not processed from wheat as most flours. Usually, coconut meat is the by-product of making coconut milk.
Coconut flour is popularly known for its tasty flavor and its incredibly fluffy foods. For beginners, baking with coconut flour can be a bit tricky, especially for those accustomed to using wheat flour. The flour is pretty dry, and it absorbs a lot of moisture. You would also be happy to know that coconut flour is an excellent alternative for protein-rich grain types of flour.
One of the main lows of coconut flour is that it cannot prepare crunchy baked foods independently, as is with wheat flours.
Why Coconut Flour?
Coconut flour, we would say, punches way above its weight in terms of benefits. Here is a tip of the iceberg;
- Coconut flour is averagely high in protein, fat, and fiber. This incredible combination of nutrients makes it quite filling. Coconut flour is concentrated in nutrients much more than most grain flours.
- This flour is naturally gluten-free. Therefore, it is an ideal option for individuals on a strict gluten-free diet.
- It does a great job of enhancing food processing in the body. Thanks to the manganese component, which is an essential nutrient in the body.
- The flour fiber is insoluble. This, in turn, adds bulk to stool hence helping smoothen the movement of food through the gut. Moreover, this also helps in preventing constipation.
- When you want to lose weight without interrupting your pastry appetite, coconut flour should be part of your ingredients. It contains both fiber and protein, which are known for reducing hunger and excessive appetite.
Coconut flour packs a variety of nutrients. In a ¼ cup serving, you are getting: 6g protein, 10g fiber, 4g fat, 18g carbs, 120 calories, and 6g sugar.
Coconut Flour Recipe
You can prepare pancakes, muffins, cookies, and bread. You can also use the flour as a binding agent in veggie load and burger recipes.
How to prepare Coconut Flour at Home
Do you prefer making your coconut flour at home? Very well, follow these easy steps;
- First, you need to get coconut pulp from coconut flakes or coconut. You can use coconut pulp from your left-overs from processing coconut milk.
- Heat the coconut pulp till it is completely dry. Leave no moisture at all.
- Once dry, blend it into your preferred texture using a food processor.
- Store in an airtight container
Coconut Flour Substitute
You can substitute coconut flour with all-purpose flour in a 1:1 ratio. We recommend that you use ¼ of the amount you usually use on other types of flour.
Baking Tips for Coconut Flour
- Use additional eggs to add structure to foods baked with coconut flour
- The coconut flour tends to be quite absorbent. Be sure to add extra liquid
- Combine it with other types of flour to enhance the structure
- Sift well before using for the finest texture
What is Almond Flour?
Almond flour is a gluten-free type of flour processed from blanched nuts. These are nuts that have no skin. Recently, there has been a surge in the popularity of almond flour. This is attributed to its sweet and nutty flavor. Besides, the flour is mostly used by low-carb dieters. After all, you are getting all the health benefits of almond foods.
Notably, this flour does not contain gluten. Therefore, it doesn’t rise with yeast as the other traditional types of flour. Due to the blanching process, it is too soft to make recipes that demand strong structure.
Benefits of Almond Flour
Being an almond food, you are right to expect loads of benefits from this flour;
- Almond flour is gluten-free. It is your go-to choice if you are on a gluten-free diet.
- It is rich in nutrients like manganese, protein, and fiber that are quite essential in body processes.
- The fats in almond flour are monounsaturated. Why should that matter? The fats are excellent for the overall health of the heart. Research has it that eating almonds and its associated foods reduce the risk of contracting coronary disease.
- Besides, the fats significantly minimize the risk of developing colon cancer by reducing aberrant crypt foci.
- A good to help with weight management
- It contains energy giving vitamins like manganese, copper, and riboflavin. Riboflavin boosts red blood cell creation, growth, and development.
¼ cup serving of almond flour contains 60mg calcium, 11g fats, 150 calories, 6g protein, 3g fiber, 1g sugar, and 6g carbs.
Almond Flour Recipes
Made of blanched almonds, this type of flour has a fine texture and is best when used in the preparation of cookies, quick bread, and muffins. Cobblers, pancakes, waffles, and tortillas are also as tasty as ever when prepared using almond flour.
How to Prepare Almond flour at Home
Preparing almond flour at home is nothing to scratch your head about. All you are going to require are almonds, a blender, or a food processor. The only trick in the preparation is grinding the almonds sparingly. You don’t want to end up with almond butter, do you?
Follow the simple steps below, and you will never spend a dime buying the flour in a store;
- The critical ingredient here is blanched almonds. Blanch your almonds using hot water to make them soft enough to pinch.
- Put the almonds into the blender or food processor and grind them into your desired texture.
- Sieve the flour to remove the large chunks and achieve a consistent texture
- Store the flour in an airtight container in a freezer
Almond Flour Baking Tips
Here are a few tips to get you moving if it’s your first time using almond flour:
- Mix almond flour with other types of flour to enhance your food structure. You can go for arrowroot flour or coconut flour.
- Eggs are also a great option in strengthening the structure of foods baked using almond flour.
- Find the finest almond flour to help the coarse recipes hold their shape.
Coconut Flour vs Almond Flour
So, what defines the coconut flour vs almond flour battle for the gluten-free diet space? Here are the main differences as well as similarities between the two flours.
Compared to blanched almonds, coconut flour has a higher variation of nutrients, including fiber content and the net carbohydrates.
When it comes to choosing a recipe, you have to consider the health benefits that come with it. Both coconut and almond flours pack a considerable number of health benefits. First of all, they contain high levels of fiber and low carb. However, they still go their separate ways on some fronts. For instance, almond flour comes with high vitamin E content that helps prevent heart disease and some types of cancer.
On the contrary, coconut flour does not contain many vitamins and minerals as the almond flour. This is because most of these minerals are lost during processing. Therefore, it leaves coconut flour with a small amount of calcium, potassium, manganese, iron, magnesium, and copper.
Baking and Uses
As much as they both share a similarity of being low carb flours, there are several variations when it comes to baking. Coconut flour is the most water-absorbent of the two. Therefore, you require more water for a coconut recipe than your almond flour recipe.
It is only natural these two flours have different tastes. After all, they are coming from different products. Almond flour tends to have a distinct almond taste, while coconut flour has a sweet flavor that is sort of generic. However, some consumers prefer it when the flavors are masked. You can combine them with some other type of flour to cover the signature flavors for coconut and almond flour if you are this kind of consumer.
In regards to content levels, almond flour has abundant fats than the coconut flour. However, what matters about fat content is quality. Almond has a high level of omega-six, while on the other hand, coconut flour has lower levels of fat. However, the fat in coconut flour is more beneficial than that of the almond flour because it is saturated.
Purchasing Tips for Coconut flour and Almond Flour
As with all flours, there are unwritten rules for shopping. As such, it would be great if we end the coconut flour vs almond flour by giving you a few shopping tips;
- Typically, almond flour is used more than coconut flour. Therefore, you should stock more of almond flour in your pantry.
- If you are on a tight budget and still need a low-carb diet, you can prepare each of these flour types at home. This will be at a lower cost compared to purchasing at the grocery
- In most groceries or supermarkets, coconut flour is always cheaper than almond flour.
- Coconut flour lasts longer if stored in a cool and dry environment. Almond flour gets rancid quite fast if not stored under refrigeration.
Hopefully, we have been able to tell you everything and anything you like to know about coconut flour vs almond flour. We hope that you now feel more confident shopping for your flours. Keep it here, and as we explore more flours and their uses.