Suggestions for Wheat-Free Cooking

Published on Sunday, 24 June 2012 12:45

 Generally, you can use any of the following for 1 cup of wheat flour:

  • 7/8 cup rice flour (white or brown)
  • 5/8 cup potato starch flour
  • 1 cup soy flour plus1/4 cup potato starch flour
  • 1 cup corn flour (if finely milled) or a scant cup finely ground cornmeal
  •  1/3 cup soy flour, 1/3 cup potato flour plus 1/3 cup rice flour
  •  1/2 cup soy flour plus 1/2 cup potato starch flour

Cooking suggestions:

  • Non-wheat flours are heavier in texture and usually need to three times as much leavener (baking soda).
  • Each non-wheat flour has its own effect on a recipe. Corn flour or finely ground cornmeal is crumbly and usually needs to be mixed with another flour to hold together.
  • Tapioca and potato flours are known for their holding power and my be used to replace wheat flours. Recipes that require lost of stick-together power (for example, pasta recipes), often use these “sticky” flours in addition to the main non-wheat flour.
  • Oat flour is sticky but gives a chewiness to baked goods.
  • Barely and rice flours are heavy but similar to wheat in flavor. They combine well with other flours in muffin recipes.
  • Soy flour is heavy and should be used only in small amounts.

Alternative Choices for Wheat Flour as a Thickener in Recipes:

Use any one as a substitute for 1 tablespoon of flour

  • 1-1/2 tsp. cornstarch
  • 1-1/2 tsp. potato starch
  • 1-1/2 tsp. sweet rice flour
  • 1-1/2 tsp. arrowroot starch
  • 1-1/2 tsp. sago (sago palm starch)
  • 1-1/2 tsp. gelatin
  • 2 tsp. quick-cooking tapioca flour
  • 1 Tbs. white or brown rice flour
  • 1 Tbs. kudzu per cup of liquid
  • ½ Tbs. or 1-1/2 tsp. agar agar per cup of fluid

Suggestions for Wheat-Free dining:


  • Fresh vegetable or fruit juice, fresh fruit, or fruit smoothie 
  • Non-wheat cereal like rice, corn, barley, rye, millet, amaranth, teff and buckwheat as a fresh-cooked whole grain 
  • Cream of rice, rye, barley, cream of buckwheat, and corn grits can be enjoyed either as a commercial or home preparation. You can grind any of these grains to make a fresh creamed cereal. These hot cereals can be eaten thinned with water, cow, goat, rice, soy, almond, or oat milk.
  • Many wheat-free cold cereals are available at the health food store and marked as “wheat–free”. These include pure rice or millet puffs, 100% oat cereals, and corn flakes/puffs.
  • Pancakes, waffles, muffins, and crackers can be made using wheat-free flours or commercial baking mixes. 
  • Organic eggs or a vegetable omelet with wheat-free toast or almond butter on rice cakes or crackers are other ideas for breakfast variety.

Lunch and Dinner

  • A basic meal of cooked low carbohydrate vegetables with beans or meat (fish, chicken, turkey, beef, etc.), grain, or root crop
  •  Bean soups (lentil, black bean, etc.) with cooked vegetable and leafy greens
  •  Stir-Fry vegetables with meat or tofu
  •  Seafood with wheat-free pasta
  •  Broiled or poached fish with root vegetables and salad
  •  Grain casseroles such as Indian millet with currents and sunflower seeds or roasted pecans with wild rice
  •  Beans dishes, such as twice-cooked beans wrapped in corn tortillas or red lentil dhal or vegetarian chili
  •  Poultry, such as fresh chicken-vegetable soup or baked, roasted, or stir-fry chicken with vegetables and salad
  •  Any meal can be spiced up with whole foods substitutes for family favorites such as baked French fries or baked sweet potato chips, vegetables with active-culture yogurt dips, or “jellos” made of agar agar or pure Knox gelatin with fruit juice.


  • Japanese rice balls filled with avocado or tuna
  •  Trail mix with fresh nuts and seeds
  •  Wheat-free muffins or crackers
  •  Baked corn or potato chips
  •  Fresh fruit
  •  All-natural gelatin sweetened with fruit juice
  •  Fresh vegetables and bean dip
  •  Lettuce roll-ups
  •  Open-face sandwich on rice cakes