While sweet potato flour is an ingredient you’ll likely need for many dishes, sometimes you just can’t find it. When that happens, surely the thought crosses your mind – are there alternatives I can use?
The best option for a substitute for sweet potato flour is quinoa flour. It’s equally versatile to sweet potato flour, and it’s super easy to make yourself.
While quinoa flour may be the best substitute, there are others still that are just as good.
1. Sweet potato starch
This ingredient is actually very similar to sweet potato flour, since it’s made from the same base ingredient. They’re made in different ways, however.
Particles of the sweet potato are suspended in water and soaked, then later removed to leave behind only the potato starch.
You can use this to replace both sweet potato flour and cornstarch. It can make noodles, sweeteners and can be added to beverages for sweetness and flavor.
2. Potato flour
Potato flour is a great sweet potato flour substitute if you’re going to be frying food.
Regular potatoes and sweet potatoes are similar enough that they can be substituted for one another with very few changes in the taste or texture of the final product. Though if you use a potato with waxy skin, you’ll definitely get a slight texture change.
While it isn’t sold in stores, you can make potato flour yourself at home.
3. Tapioca flour
While tapioca and sweet potatoes aren’t anywhere near the same, they can both be used as flour.
Tapioca flour is the perfect substitute for sweet potato flour in just about any dish you’d need it for.
While sweet potato flour is made from sweet potatoes or yams, tapioca is made from the roots of the cassava plant. But, since they’re both root vegetables that grow in quite similar ways, they can essentially be used interchangeably in this way.
4. Rice flour
Rice is a staple in just about every household, it would be hard to find a family that never used it. The rice can easily be made into flour to substitute for sweet potato flour – or truly any flour.
Rice flour is typically used as a thickener in dishes like sauces and soups, and as breading for fried foods.
They’re both starchy and have a similar white color. Rice flour is very filling and starchy, and has an almost identical mouth-feel to sweet potato flour.
5. Water chestnut flour
Something you’ve probably never thought of using is water chestnut flour. They grow in wet marshes, the roots being completely submerged in water.
Water chestnut flour is typically used as a thickener, and is very popular as a frying batter in Asian recipes.
The flavor isn’t exactly the same however, as water chestnut flour tends to have a mildly tart flavor.
6. Arrowroot starch
The final suggestion of a substitute for sweet potato flour is arrowroot starch. It works just the same as any other starch, for thickening sauces, stews, and soups.
Arrowroot starch can be frozen and stored safely for later use, with no change in quality as it’s slightly resistant to the formation of ice crystals in the freezer.
Being a tropical tuber, it’s very similar to the previously mentioned tapioca flour.
The texture will be nearly identical to sweet potato flour, and luckily it’s flavorless so there’s no worry of accidentally changing the taste of your dish.
If you’re having a hard time finding sweet potato flour, or you just want to branch out and try something new in the kitchen, any of these options will work perfectly.
It’s important as a chef to learn to work with various different types of ingredients, so even if you aren’t pressed for a substitute it would be worth it to try these out regardless. You could find something you love even more.