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Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flours: A Great Convenience for those with Gluten-Related Disorders

Gluten-free all-purpose flours abound. Today, one can shop online or at a local market and find a wide variety of gluten-free all-purpose flours. The initial gluten-free baking days can be filled with much trial, error and experimenting. How does a person select gluten-free all-purpose flour? This is a question frequently asked by those newly diagnosed with celiac disease or living with non-celiac gluten-sensitivity. Taste is often what drives initial preferences. Later, nutrition considerations become important as well.

Common questions and answers regarding gluten-free all-purpose flours:

Which gluten-free all-purpose flour is highest in fiber?

Bob’s Red Mill, Mama’s Coconut Blend, Premium Gold Flax and Whole Grain All-Purpose Flour rank the highest in fiber per serving size based on this comparison. A serving size is generally approximately one-quarter cup of flour. These flours contain 3 grams of fiber per serving.

Which gluten-free all-purpose flour is highest in protein?

Authentic Foods: Bette’s Featherlight Flour Blend, Bob’s Red Mill All-Purpose Flour, Mama’s All-Purpose Almond Blend and Premium Gold Flax and Whole Grain All-Purpose Flour are the highest in protein content at 3 grams of protein per serving size based on this comparison.

Which gluten-free all-purpose flour is lowest in carbohydrates?

Premium Gold Flax & Whole Grain All-Purpose Flour takes first place for being the lowest in carbohydrates. This gluten-free flour has 21 grams of carbohydrate per half cup of flour.

Which gluten-free all-purpose -flours contain binding agents such as xanthan gum or guar gum?

Many companies include xanthan gum or guar gum in their flour blends to improve product structure. Xanthan gum is a fermented product frequently used in the food industry as a thickener, binder or emulsifier. Xanthan gums are manufactured by pure-culture bacterial fermentation process. Corn is a common substrate for the fermentation process; however, the gum itself is from Xanthomonas campestris bacterium. According to TIC Gums, a major xanthan gum manufacturer, “Due to the processing there aren’t any proteins from the corn left in the finished product. Xanthan gum does not contain a corn allergen and is suitable for those sensitive to corn.”

Guar gum is extracted from the seed of the guar bean (a member of the legume family) and is also used as a thickener or binder.

These binding or thickening agents may increase the price of the product; however, their inclusion saves on purchasing the binders separately. The chart included in this article details which all-purpose flours contain xanthan gum or guar gum.

Which gluten-free all-purpose flours are free of potato, corn, dairy, rice or nuts?

This is a common question! Many people who require the gluten-free diet may also have numerous food allergies or sensitivity to a variety of foods. The charts included below can aid in identifying the best option based on one’s personal requirements.

Final Thoughts

Gluten-free flour blends abound! CSA hopes that this article will encourage and help many in finding the gluten-free flour blend that best meets their individual taste and nutrition needs.

Email dietitian Shelly at csaceliacs.org and share your favorite gluten-free all purpose flour.

Table 1: Ingredient Comparison of 18 Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flours

Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Ingredients
Authentic Food: Bette’s Featherlight Flour Blend rice flour, corn starch, tapioca flour, potato flour
Authentic Food: Bette’s Four Flour Blend cornstarch, tapioca flour, garfava flour (garbanzo flour, fava flour) sorghum flour
Authentic Foods: GF Classic Blend brown rice flour, potato starch, tapioca flour
Authentic Foods: Multi Blend Flour brown rice flour, sweet rice flour, tapioca starch, cornstarch, potato starch, xanthan gum
Better Batter rice flour, brown rice flour, tapioca starch, potato starch, potato flour, pectin (lemon-derived) xanthum gum (corn free)
Bob’s Red Mill garbonzo bean flour, potato starch, tapioca flour, white sorghum flour, fava bean flour
Cup4Cup cornstarch, white rice flour, brown rice flour, milk powder tapioca flour, potato starch and xantham gum.
Domata Living Flour rice flour, corn starch, tapioca dextrix, xantham gum, rice extract
GlutenFree Pantry/Glutino white rice flour, potato starch, tapioca starch, guar gum, salt
Jules Gluten Free Expandex® Modified Tapioca Starch, potato starch, corn starch, corn flour, white rice starch, xanthum gum
King Arthur specialty flour blend (rice flour, tapioca starch), potato starch, whole grain brown rice flour, calcium carbonate, niacinadmide (A B vitamin), reduced iron, thiamin hydrochloridevitamin B1), riboflavin (vitamin B2).
Mama’s AP Almond Blend white rice flour, tapioca flour, potato starch, almond meal flour, sweet rice flour
Mama’s AP Coconut Blend white rice flour, tapioca four, potato starch, organic coconut meal flour, sweet rice flour
Mr. Ritt’s AP Flour Blend white rice flour, potato starch, tapioca starch, and xanthan gum
Mr. Ritt’s Buckwheat Blend light buckwheat flour, potato starch, tapioca starch, xanthan gum.
Pamela’s Artisan Flour Blend brown rice flour, tapioca starch, white rice flour, potato starch, sorghum flour, arrowroot starch, sweet rice flour, guar gum
Premium Gold Flax & Whole Grain AP Flour rice flour, TCM® Ground Flaxseed, quinoa flour, buckwheat flour, amaranth flour, tapioca flour, arrowroot flour, xanthan gum
Tom Sawyer starch, white rice flour, potato starch, sorghum flour, arrowroot starch, sweet rice flour, guar gum

Table 2: Nutrient Fact and Binding Agent Comparison of Eighteen Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flours

GF AP Flour/Website

Serving Size (g) ~ ¼ c

Carbohydrate(g)

Fiber (g)

Fat (g)

Protein (g)

Binding Agent

Included

Authentic Food: Bette’s Featherlight Flour Blendwww.glutenfree-supermarket.com

40g

36

0

0

1

Authentic Food: Bette’s Four Flour Blendwww.glutenfree-supermarket.com

40g

32

2

1

3

Authentic Foods: GF Classic Blendwww.glutenfree-supermarket.com

32g

25

1

0.5

2

Authentic Foods: Multi Blend Flourwww.glutenfree-supermarket.com

40g

33

1

0.5

2

xanthan gum
Better Batterwww.betterbatter.org

28 g

22

1

0

1

xanthan gum
Bob’s Red Millwww.bobsredmill.com

34g

22

3

1

3

Cup4Cupwww.cup4cup.com

32g

26

0

0

2

xanthan gum
Domata Living Flourwww.domataglutenfree.com

40g

32

1

0

1

xanthan gum
GlutenFree Pantry/Glutinowww.glutino.com

28g

26

0

0

1

guar gum
Jules Gluten Freewww.julesglutenfree.com

31g

26

<1

0

1

xanthan gum
King Arthurwww.kingarthurflour.com

30g

24

0

0

2

Mama’s AP Almond Blendwww.glutenfreemama.com

28g

22

1

3

3

Mama’s AP Coconut Blendwww.glutenfreemama.com

28g

23

3

0

2

Mr. Ritt’s AP Flour Blendwww.mrritts.com

28g

23

1

0

1

xanthan gum
Mr. Ritt’s Buckwheat Blendwww.mrritts.com

30g

14

1

0

1

xanthan gum
Pamela’s Artisan Flour Blendwww.pamelasproducts.com

30g

25

1.5

0

1

guar gum
Premium Gold Flax & Whole Grain AP Flourwww.premiumgoldflax.com

28g

21

3

2.5

3

xanthan gum
Tom Sawyerwww.glutenfreeflour.com

32g

26

2

0

1

xanthan gum

 

Shelly Asplin, MA, RD, LMNT

Shelly Asplin, Nutrition Program Coordinator for the Celiac Sprue Association (CSA), has been a registered dietitian for twenty years.  Asplin perseveres to raise awareness of celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity through public speaking engagements throughout the country for health professionals, school systems, industry, and food service professionals.

Asplin earned a degree in Human Nutrition and Food Service Management from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and completed her dietetic internship at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. She earned a masters degree in Health Education from the University of Nebraska-Omaha, and has served on elected and volunteer positions for both the Nebraska Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the Omaha District Dietetic Association.  Shelly is currently the Nebraska Delegate for the Nebraska Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, formerly the American Dietetics Association.

At the forefront of Asplin’s mind is the thought, “Bottom-line, I want people living gluten-free to love living gluten-free!  I hope that my work will touch every person with a gluten-related disorder in a positive way.”