If you told me a year ago I’d be dabbling in the whole DIY gluten free flour thing I’d have laughed. In disbelief. I imagine my last year’s self saying something like, “I have enough to keep me busy thank you very much,” and perhaps throwing in an eye roll for emphasis.
But time and experience have shifted my perception. Making your own GF flour blend is not hard, but you do have to feel ready. If you’re new to GF or even if you’re not new, but perfectly comfortable buying a ready-made blend, then stop reading now. Or rather, keep reading, just ignore my flour making advice.
Last summer I wrote two posts about GF flour in a critically acclaimed series called So Many Flours, So Little Time, Parts 1 and 2. In the first I talk about all the genuine fear involved (so you know that’s where I was back then) and in the second, I give some advice and offer a bunch of helpful links including those on my GF Flour page.
But check me out now! I’m all gluten free girl-ing it up around here. Those flours below, clockwise starting with the yellowish one are: millet, sweet rice (which is a starch), teff, and sorghum. All are in my GF flour blend, except for the brown teff which I added just cause it’s pretty.
Please don’t think I’m nuts. I may be slightly insane due to extreme sleep deprivation, but I am genuinely excited about gluten free flour. Fine, I’m crazy.
I was inspired by a great video from Gluten Free Girl about how to make an all-purpose GF flour. She recently wrote another one about making a whole grain version.
First you need a scale to weigh the flours. Don’t be scared! I love my scale. Love it. (Though if I knew it came in red I totally would have gotten that one.) Want to know the best thing about using a scale? Less dirty dishes. No joke. Instead of using a bunch of measuring cups and spoons, you weigh everything right into one bowl. If someone had told me that little secret, I might have bought a scale sooner.
Here’s how you do it, ala GF Girl’s video: 40% gluten free whole grains, 60% white flours/starches. Pick the ones you want, weigh them, shake it all up, and voila. Done.
*For a healthier/heartier version, use 60% whole grains and 40% white flours/starches. I’ve been doing this recently and it has been a big success. Or even 70-30. Experiment!
Before I shook it up so you can see all the layers of different flours.
I followed Shauna’s directions using her suggested grains (200 grams of sorghum flour, 200 grams of millet flour, 300 grams of sweet rice flour, and 300 grams of potato starch) because that’s how I roll. I’m a direction follower, can’t help myself. Switch it up if you want to do 60% whole grain 40% starches. Easy peasy.
But you can do any combo of these grains/starches:
WHOLE GRAIN FLOURS
brown rice flour
sweet potato flour
sweet rice flour
white rice flour
NUT FLOURS (these would count as whole grains)
Here is what I love about making my own flour blend – it’s up to ME. This is also exactly what scared me at first. Um, it’s up to me? What the heck do I know? Well, nearly two years into this whole gluten free thing and I feel like I know a decent amount. Certainly not everything, that will never happen, but more than I did before. Enough to make my own blend and use it in these delicious pumpkin pancakes.
The other thing I love is that it’s healthier. That’s right! Take that gluten eaters. In my family’s pre-celiac days, I used to try to bake using whole wheat flour. My husband hated when I did this. He begged me to please, pretty please, with refined sugar poured on top, use the bleached white stuff. Because often when I used whole wheat it turned everything into unappetizing leaden blobs. Now, I admit I’m not the best or most experienced baker, and that better baked goods made from whole wheat gluten flour is certainly possible, but to me it’s EASIER and HEALTHIER to use gluten free flours like teff, buckwheat, millet and sorghum (to name just a few).
I like baking even more when I can feel good about the ingredients that are going into the bellies of Bunky and Little Guy. And my picky husband who hated whole wheat flour in baked goods, loves what I make with the whole grain gluten free stuff. Like these banana chocolate chip muffins. They don’t last more than two days around here. And that’s if I hide them.
Feel like you need a bit more help or encouragement? Check out this fantastic post by my friend Kristine over at Thank Heavens. She offers her own recipe blend and gives some great descriptions of GF flours.
Go forth and experiment! If I can do it, anyone can. Seriously.
I’m happy to have shared this post at the Gluten-Free Friday’s link up party hosted by Vegetarian Mamma. Click the link to find more great GF recipes!
It’s also posted on One Creative Weekend, hosted by One Creative Mommy, and Simply Sugar and Gluten Free’s Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays. * Please note, that the recipes on these two link-ups will NOT all be gluten free, so be sure to read carefully.