Alternative Flours



Wheat flour is the most commonly used flour in the United States. Sometimes you may need an alternative particularly if you or a family member has to avoid gluten in their diet. Click the link to view additional information about the alternate ingredient.
 Flour  Description Gluten Content   How To Substitute

Amaranth Flour

A high-protein flour made from the seed of the amaranth plant. The flour can be used for making breads. Look for amaranth flour at health food stores or Asian markets.



Substitute for wheat flour for general baking, cup for cup.  This flour is higher in protein than wheat flour.

For yeast bread recipes,  replace up to a fourth of the wheat flour with amaranth.

bajri flour
Bajri flour
A gluten-free flour made from ground millet seed. You can replace up to 1/3 ...
 Gluten-Free You can replace up to 1/3 of the wheat flour with millet flour when making baked goods.
Banana flour
Banana flour is made from the starchy plantain. It is sometimes used for a ...
 Gluten-Free For general cooking use banana flour cup for cup.  When baking, use 1/4 less banana flour than all-purpose flour.
 barley flour
Barley flour
Barley Flour is ground from the whole barley and provides a moist, sweet, nut-like ...
 Low-Gluten You can substitute up to 1/3 cup of barley flour in place of regular flour to produce a tender baked product.
 buckwheat flour Buckwheat flour
Buckwheat is actually a herb and the edible portion is the triangular shaped seeds. The seeds are ground into buckwheat flour which is used to make pancakes and the famous Russian blini.
 Gluten-Free You can replace up to half of the wheat flour called for in your recipe
chickpea flour Chickpea flour
A fine, gluten-free flour ground from dried chickpeas (garbanzo beans) used ...
 Gluten-Free To replace one cup of all-purpose flour use 7/8 cup chickpea flour. You can combine this flour with other gluten-free flours such as rice flour and sorghum flour.  Bob's Red Mill recommends replacing up to 25% of the wheat flour in your recipe with chickpea flour. This will increase the fiber and the protein in the recipe.
coconut flour Coconut flour
Coconut flour is made from the coconut fiber left over after liquid has been ...
 Gluten-Free According to Bob's Red Mill: Coconut flour can replace up to 20% of the flour in a recipe, but you will need to add an equal amount of liquid to compensate.
corn flour masa Corn flour
Corn flour, is available as finely ground corn or made into masa flour which is made from dried corn which has been slaked (soaked ...
 Gluten-Free Plain corn flour can be used as a breading or combined with other flours for baking. Don't try to substitute "masa flour" for regular corn flour. Whole Grain Corn Flour can be used to make cornbread, biscuits or even pancakes.
corn meal Cornmeal
A type of flour made from ground, dried corn. Cornmeal is available in fine ...
 Gluten-Free Use for quick breads like cornbread or can be used with some yeast breads. Does not typically work well for a wheat flour substitute.
 elubo flour
An African product, elubo or yam flour is made from dried yams. (These are ...
 Gluten-Free This is hard to find in the U.S. and is in general not a good substitute for wheat flour.  It can be used for some quick breads and pancakes.
 kamut flour Kamut flour Flour made from Kamut which is a speciality grain that is considered a spring Medium-Low Gluten
Use in pasta and some bread recipes when combined with other flours.
 oat bran flour Oat bran
The high fiber outside casing of the oat grain. Oat bran is an excellent food ...
 oat flour Oat flour
A gluten-free flour made from whole oats ground into a fine flour. You can ...
 rice flour Rice flour
A white flour milled from regular (not glutinous) rice used in Asian cooking ...
 rye flour Rye flour Rye is a grass grown as a grain crop. Rye flour is ground rye seed. Rye flour is used in breads and crackers and is particularly popular in Eastern and Northern European countries.  Low-Gluten  
 soy flour  Soy flour  Gluten-Free You can substitute 3/4 cup of soy flour per 1 cup of white flour.  Soy flour has a stronger flavor so take that into consideration when using.
 spelt flour Spelt Flour
Spelt (Triticum Aestivum Spelt) is a shiny, dark rice shaped grain related
 Low-Gluten This flour is well tolerated by some people with gluten allergies. It can be used in recipes for breads and pastas. Substitute equal amounts of spelt four for all-purpose flour. If using whole wheat flour then substitute equal amounts of whole grain spelt flour.
 sweet potato flour  Sweet Potato Flour  Gluten-Free  
 urad flour Urad flour
Flour made from ground urad beans (a type of lentil). The white flour is used in Indian cooking to make poppadums and other traditional breads.
 Gluten-Free Use for making flat breads, poppadums.  Not a good substitute for wheat flour.

When Substituting Flour

Some flours work better than other for specific recipes.  When substituting a non-wheat flour don't replace more than 50% of the flour with the replacement.  This is a general rule and may vary depending on the alternate flour.

For Recipes With 2 Cups Or Less Of Wheat Flour

Recipes that call for 2 cups or less of wheat flour are easier to substitute with an alternative flour. This is particularly true when the recipe calls for cake flour which is already lower in gluten.1 For these recipes you can use equal parts of the substitute but know the recipe will not be identical to the version with gluten.

Buy Alternative Flour Mixes

  • Cup4Cup: Chef Thomas Keller of the famous Laundry Works restaurant came up with a wheat-free flour named C4C which stands for Cup for Cup.  You can simply substitute 1 cup of this special gluten-free flour for one cup of all-purpose flour.
  • Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free All-Purpose Flour:- This flour blend contains several gluten-free flours from potatoes, sorghum, tapioca, garbanzo and fava beans.
  • King Arthur Multi-Purpose Gluten-Free Flour: -King Arthur's own specialty flour blend (rice flour, tapioca starch), potato starch, whole grain brown rice flour.

Barbara Bowman graduated with degree in Foods and Nutrition from San Jose State University. As CEO of she spends most waking hours writing, cooking, eating, gardening and traveling.