With multiple uses and health benefits, rice flour is a valuable item in any kitchen. What happens when you’re preparing a savory dish and there’s none available?
You can substitute rice flour with ordinary all-purpose flour, coconut flour, millet flour, sorghum flour, chickpea flour, cornstarch, or tapioca flour.
Substitutes for Rice Flour
You’ll find the substitutes vary in their use for frying, baking, or thickening. Some or healthier than others or have a nutty or bitter taste.
1. All-Purpose Flour
Yes, of course, all-purpose flour is an alternative to rice flour.
Consider your reasons for using rice flour. Is the main reason because it’s gluten-free? If so, then all-purpose flour is not the best choice for you. It contains about 8% – 11% gluten.
If gluten isn’t a problem, then all-purpose flour is a good choice. Watch how your baked goods come out of the oven fluffier.
Can you find gluten-free all-purpose flour? Yes. Just look online or at your favorite local grocery or health food store.
2. Almond Flour
Naturally gluten-free with multiple health benefits, almond flour can have a nutty taste and be good for you.
With an abundance of monounsaturated fat, almond flour works to help keep your cholesterol under control. You are aiding in heart health. You know, having a healthy digestive system is essential. Almond flour packs a lot of prebiotic dietary fiber, which is helpful for an efficient digestive system.
You may prefer baking with almond flour over frying. When you fry, it will cook fast and may burn quickly. Rather than frying, you could coat the food and bake in an oven. Avoid using it as a thickening agent.
Just be careful with using too much when frying or baking because it does leave a nutty taste.
3. Coconut Flour
Coconut flour is an excellent substitute for rice flour in your baking, frying, and thickening recipes. Coconut flour is gluten-free and grain-free.
One of the many foods made from the fruit of the palm tree, it’s a byproduct of coconut milk production.
This flour is a good option for people on vegan or vegetarian diets wanting to get more iron. It also has a low glycemic index rating, which means it takes longer to digest and absorb carbohydrates for those wishing to control blood sugar.
One tablespoon of coconut flour contains:
- 60 Calories
- 1 gram of Protein
- 1 gram of Fat
- 4 grams of Carbohydrates
- 2.5 grams of Fiber
- .5 grams of sugar
Coconut flour works well as breading for fried foods. When you use it for baked goods, you will use less sugar or sweetener because of its natural sweetness. Because of this, you’ll use less coconut flour than rice flour for your baked goods.
You can also use it as a thickening agent.
4. Millet Flour
Maybe one of the healthiest substitutes to rice flour. One hundred grams of millet flour gives you 22 percent of the Daily Value for iron and B vitamins that support energy.
It’s also packed with antioxidants and minerals like zinc, phosphorus, magnesium, copper, potassium, and manganese.
Millet Flour is another gluten-free flour that promotes that gut-friendly probiotic bacteria. It’s been a relief to those with celiac disease.
50 grams of millet flour contains the following nutrition
- Calories: 191
- Fat: 2.1 g (3 percent DV)
- Carbohydrates: 37 g (14 percent DV)
- Dietary fiber: 2 g (6 percent DV)
- Protein: 5 g (11 percent DV)
- Calcium: 7 mg (.5 percent DV)
- Iron: 2 mg (11 percent DV)
- Potassium: 112 mg (2.5 percent DV)
Millet flour is excellent for all your baked good recipes and can have a corn-like flavor. You may not get the results you want from frying, so try to coat and bake in the oven.
5. Sorghum Flour
Sorghum flour is a healthy alternative to rice flour, an ancient cereal grain with multiple health benefits.
High in B vitamins that play a vital role in skin and hair health and metabolism. A great source of protein and fiber, with only a half cup providing about 20% of the recommended daily fiber intake.
Another gluten-free option you can enjoy with your favorite desserts and baked goods.
Use Sorghum flour on a 1:1 conversion with rice flour for baking or frying if you want. You may notice a bitter taste when frying.
6. Chickpea Flour
Chickpeas, garbanzo beans, considered one of the oldest crops in the world and have been around for over 7,500 years. Highly popular and second only to the soybean as the most widely grown and eaten bean globally.
This flour is a true superfood and a great source of protein, fiber, B vitamins, zinc, iron, phosphorous, and much more.
Naturally gluten-free, along with other benefits
- Protect against heart disease and cancer.
- Chickpeas have a lot of essential vitamins and minerals.
- High fiber content leads to improved digestion.
- It helps to control blood sugar levels.
- A low glycemic index provides slow-releasing carbohydrates.
Use it for baking, frying, and as a thickening agent in all your cooking needs. Just be careful because it soaks up a lot of moisture, and things can get sticky.
Cornstarch is the substitute for you if you want a good thickening agent for gravy, sauces, and soups or you want to cook your favorite fried foods.
If you’re going to use it for baking, you’ll want to use extra ingredients because it doesn’t stand alone very well.
Even though cornstarch is gluten-free, it doesn’t have many health benefits.
8. Tapioca Flour
When using tapioca flour instead of rice flour, you’ll want to use almost twice as much.
You can bake pastries with tapioca flour as it will give a chew to the baked goods and add a crispness to the crusts.
Its best purpose is as a thickener for soups, sauces, and gravies. You may find it doesn’t work well for frying foods.
Tapioca flour is another gluten-free flour with moderate health benefits.
Whatever rice flour substitute you choose, keep in mind how you’ll be cooking and the type of flour you’ll use. Some flours soak up more moisture, be aware of that. Other flours have a different taste, like more nutty or bitter.
You’ll find that certain flours work well for baking while others are better for thickening. Some just don’t work well for frying in oil. You may want to coat your food and put those in an oven.
Remember to enjoy the cooking experience.