Brown rice flour is one of the healthiest flour varieties you can buy. But what if you decide to use it to bake or fry and find out that you have run out of it or it has gone bad?
What is the best brown rice flour substitute? The best gluten-free substitutes for brown rice flour are coconut flour, almond flour, arrowroot flour, tapioca flour, and amaranth flour. The substitution of these flour varieties for brown rice flour is 1:1. The best brown rice flour substitutes for baking, frying, and thickening sauces are sorghum flour, cornstarch, and all-purpose flour respectively.
Continue reading to find out more about brown rice flour and its substitutes and if you can use white rice flour instead.
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Brown Rice Flour – Characteristics and Uses
Brown rice flour is a flour variety made by grinding brown rice. As rice grains are stone-ground whole, there are lots of nutrients in brown rice flour. This flour is one of the healthiest you can find. This is the reason why you often see brown rice flour listed among the ingredients of healthier baked goods.
Rice flours contain high amounts of protein in general. But brown rice flour is a winner in this respect. It is richer in vitamin B and iron than white rice flour. Being made from whole grains of rice including the bran, brown rice flour is also a better source of fiber.
Another winning point of brown rice flour is that it is gluten-free and caters to a larger group of people.
The flavor of brown rice flour is not as neutral as the flavor of some other flour varieties. It has a distinct nutty flavor that would give this flour away if you tried to substitute it for another flour. It should be noted, however, that the taste of brown rice flour is quite mild. So, don’t be intimidated by the name.
The texture of brown rice flour is not as smooth as that of finely-milled flour varieties. This is because the rice is not polished before it is ground.
As far as the appearance is concerned, this flour doesn’t have a crisp white color, which was to be expected. For comparison, white rice flour that is made from polished rice grains is one shade lighter than brown rice flour.
How Brown Rice Flour Is Used
If you are an all-purpose flour user and want to make some healthy changes in your cooking and eating habits, consider substituting it with brown rice flour.
Brown rice flour is more versatile than some might expect. You can use it to bake your favorite muffins and pancakes. Gluten-free homemade bread is also a great way to use brown rice flour.
Brown rice flour can also be used in cooking sauces and gravies as it is a great thickening agent.
If you are someone that enjoys fried food, you can use brown rice flour to fry chicken or fish.
Can You Substitute Brown Rice Flour with White Rice Flour?
What makes brown rice flour similar to white rice flour is that they are both made from rice. In all other aspects, these two flour varieties are different.
As we have already mentioned, brown rice flour has a nutty taste. White rice flour, on the other hand, has a neutral flavor.
White rice flour has a smooth texture and has a pure white color. Brown rice flour is more textured and not as smooth. This makes brown rice flour heavier and denser than white rice flour. Thus, using these flours interchangeably is not a good idea.
In baking recipes, add more of the white rice flour than the recipe calls for brown rice flour. Otherwise, your baked goods will fall apart. Brown rice flour soaks up more liquid than white rice flour does.
The Best Brown Rice Flour Substitutes
Brown rice flour, like almost any other cooking ingredient, has its substitutes. You may want to use another flour variety because you don’t like the texture or taste of brown rice flour or you may simply run out of it. There are also people who are allergic to rice flour and finding healthy substitutes that will work just as well is important.
As one of the key characteristics of brown rice flour is that it is gluten-free, we have picked five flour varieties you can use instead of brown rice flour. And the best part is, no need to do the maths as the substitution is measure for measure.
Here are the best brown rice flour substitutes.
- Coconut flour
- Almond flour
- Arrowroot flour
- Tapioca flour
- Amaranth flour
You can also use oat flour as a brown rice flour substitute if you make sure that it is gluten-free.
Oat flour may be manufactured or packaged in the same building as grains that contain gluten. Thus, it is best to make sure that the oat flour you are using is certified to be gluten-free.
Depending on what you need to use brown rice flour for, you may go with other alternatives.
If you are on the hunt for a brown rice flour substitute that is gluten-free, nutritious, and great for baking, then sorghum flour is your best bet. It has a mild flavor that won’t overshadow other ingredients. The texture is fine and smooth.
This flour contains a good amount of protein and fiber. As a result, goods baked with sorghum flour have a lot of structure. Sorghum flour is also a rich source of antioxidants and minerals.
To swap brown rice flour with sorghum flour use one part of sorghum flour instead of one part of brown rice flour.
Brown rice flour makes a beautiful light coating for fried food.
Chicken or fish fried with brown rice flour doesn’t turn out oily and greasy. If you are someone that doesn’t like frying with all-purpose flour because it makes food heavy, you should certainly give brown rice flour a try.
With all of this in mind, a good brown rice flour substitute for frying should be gluten-free and produce a similar result.
In this case, the best substitute is not flour but starch.
Use cornstarch as a brown rice substitute for frying. Your food will turn out light, crispy, and gluten-free. You will miss the nutty undertones of brown rice flour. But the truth is, it is not easy to find a good flour or starch that has a nutty flavor.
As a Thickening Agent
There are lots of substitutes for brown rice flour to be used as a thickener for a sauce or gravy.
If your relationship with gluten is good, all-purpose flour is a great choice as it will do the job nicely. For a gluten-free substitute, cornstarch will be nice.
Homemade Brown Rice Flour
If you have run out of brown rice flour but have brown rice in your pantry, you have the best brown rice substitute almost ready at hand.
Here is how to make brown rice flour at home.
- Put some brown rice in a blender.
- Turn on the highest power.
- Blend until you reach the perfect flour consistency.
You can make some of this homemade brown rice flour in a bigger batch and store it in a cool and dry place for a few months.
This method of making brown rice flour is especially convenient for those who don’t use it often. It is better to make a few tablespoons of brown rice flour at home than buy a package from the supermarket and let it go to waste.