This is a quick and easy guide to make your own gluten free flour mix. I have tips in the post for choosing the best gluten free flours to work with, and the ratios you need to use plus various substitutions so you can work with whatever gluten free flour you have in your pantry!
Why make my own Gluten Free Flour Mix?
I’ve been making my own Gluten free flour mix for several years now. When I first started gluten-free baking several years ago I bought the Ready Mixed gluten-free flours that you can find in the grocery store.
However, I found that 9 times out of 10, the ready made gluten free flour blends simply did not bake up as well as my own blend.
Another reason I prefer to mix up my own gluten free flour recipe is that it’s almost always cheaper than buying the ready mixed gluten free flour blends. Most of the pre-mixed gluten free flour recipes are typically made up of cheaper starch flours. While I use many of the same flours in my gluten free flour mix, the ratios I use are different and I can control exactly what goes in them.
Nowadays I know how to make gluten free flour from scratch so I just mix them without even weighing or measuring them anymore, I’ve been doing it for so long.
but I understand that can be intimidating if you’re just starting out on your gluten free journey or if you’ve only ever used a ready made gluten free flour mix. I’ve included the detailed step-by-step guide, along with some tips, that lists all the flours that I prefer to use. The full gluten free flour mix recipe is at the end of the post.
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The Best Gluten Free Flour Mix for Baking
It’s my preference to use a mixture of approximately 80% starch gluten free flour and 20% whole grain gluten free flour to make up my gluten free flour recipe, it’s easy to mix up and swap out the flours with that ratio.
This ratio works well for me and is a good homemade gluten free flour mix recipe that is suitable for cakes, cookies, gluten free bread, and almost anything else I want to bake.
I typically use mostly white rice flour, another starch such as tapioca or potato starch, that will make up about 80% of my gluten free flour blend, and then I add about 20% whole grain gluten free flours such as sorghum or brown rice flour, or a combination of the two.
Try to avoid gluten free flours made from beans because, well, they taste like beans! I don’t know about you but I want my cupcake to taste like a real cake! Garbanzo bean flour is commonly used in some mixes, it’s totally fine for some savory dishes but you really don’t want that flavor to come through in your more delicate baked goods.
I do not use coconut flour in my gluten free flour mix recipe as it’s tricky to bake with and does not work quite like the other gluten free flours, I tend to reserve that for Paleo baking only.
The same goes for Almond flour, it’s much heavier than typical gluten free flour because it’s made from ground nuts so unless a recipe calls for it, I don’t use it.
Tips for making your own Gluten Free Flour Mix
Here’s a few quick tips for making a gluten free flour mix that works well for almost all gluten free baking recipes!
- Start with White rice flour, that will make up most of the blend. It’s cheap and readily available too, I use about 50% white rice flour in my blend.
- I like to use a second starch flour, typically that will be either potato, tapioca, or corn starch, or a combination of two of those depending on what I have in my pantry, I use about 30% from the group.
- I like to add about 20% Whole grain gluten free flour, brown rice flour or sorghum are my top choices.
- Once you have your three to four gluten free flours picked out, you can weigh them using an electronic digital kitchen scale in the proportions I’ve listed above, if you want specific weights for each flour then please read the suggested list I have in the printable recipe card I have at the end of the post.
- I store my mixed gluten free flour mix in a large airtight tub in my fridge or freezer. The reason for that is twofold, first, it’s to keep it fresh as flour can go rancid and as gluten free flour is more expensive than regular flour I don’t want to have to throw it out.
What are the best Gluten free flours to use?
There are many different gluten free flours to choose from, which is really neat, but can also be very confusing especially if you are just starting out.
Here’s my list of some of the most popular and widely available gluten free flours that you may be able to find at your grocery store or online via Amazon:
Gluten Free Starch Flours
- White rice flour – I always use this for about 50% of my mix, it’s usually easy to find in the grocery store
- Potato starch – use up to 20% (note: this is not the same as potato flour)
- Tapioca starch – I don’t use more than 10% of this in any mix, in my experience too much can alter the texture of your baked goods as it makes a sticky mixture when wet.
- Arrowroot – I like this gluten free flour and would use up to 20% in my mixes. The only downside is the cost, it’s really pricey compared to the other starches
- Cornstarch – I would use up to 20%, I try and use only non GMO corn which can be hard to find, so I usually use another starch instead.
Gluten Free Whole Grain Flours
- Brown Rice Flour – This is probably the most common whole grain and is widely available where gluten free flours are sold. I use up to 20% brown rice
- Sorghum Flour – I love this flour and if I have it available I usually use half brown rice and half sorghum flour for the whole grain part of my mix, so 10% of my mix. It can be a bit harder to find than some of the others.
- Quinoa flour – never used this due to the cost
- Teff flour – again, not used it due to cost
Can you substitute gluten free flour for all purpose flour in recipes?
The short answer is no, you can’t simply substitute wheat flour with gluten free flour cup for cup and expect consistent results.
It might work ok for some recipes which are more forgiving and will still work (but not as well) with inconsistent amounts of flour, but it may end in disaster for other recipes.
There are some commercially available ‘cup for cup’ blends out there that some people love, but I still prefer to make my own gluten free flour mix recipe.
What is Xanthan gum and where can I buy it?
Xanthan gum is commonly used to replace gluten in gluten free baked goods, both at home and in commercial baking. It’s kind of pricey to buy but if you plan to regularly bake gluten free then it’s worth it as you only need a very small amount per recipe.
Once it’s opened I like to keep it in an airtight container in my fridge as it keeps it lasts longer that way, you can easily store it in the pantry too though.
Is Xanthan Gum necessary for gluten free baking?
Xanthan gum is not absolutely necessary for gluten free baking, but it is widely available so that’s what many gluten free bakers typically use.
Some gluten free baking recipes will work just fine without any binder to replace the gluten, but for those that do need it you can opt to use another gum, such as Guar gum, or you can make a sticky slurry with chia or flax seeds instead, though the results may not be exactly the same.
Gluten Free Flour Recipe
Quick and easy step by step guide to help you make the best Gluten Free Flour mix Recipe that works well for cakes, cookies, bread and more!
Please read the post for more details on what flour you can use for this recipe. You can make gluten free flour substitutions, they are all discussed in some detail in the post.
To make this gluten free flour recipe simply weigh the flours as listed (or choose substitutes from the lists in the post) and use a whisk to mix them well together. Store the gluten free flour mix in an airtight container
Please note: potato starch and potato flour are not the same and are not interchangeable.
I recommend you use an inexpensive digital kitchen scale for gluten free baking as it's much more accurate and gives better baking results, especially for gluten free as cup for cup, each flour has a different weight.
If you don't bake regularly I suggest keeping the flour in the fridge or freezer to prevent it going stale or rancid and prevent any bugs getting into it.
WHOLE GRAIN FLOUR SUBSTITUTIONS
If you read my post you'll find my suggested whole grain gluten free flour substitutions if you don't have the ones listed in this recipe.
GLUTEN FREE STARCH FLOUR SUBSTITUTIONS
There are many gluten free starches to choose from, I have a list of them all in the post if you prefer to use a different gluten free flour than the ones listed in this recipe. Please note that Potato starch and Potato flour are NOT the same thing.