Potato flour is a famous flour variant that works for different purposes. It is ideal for cooking, baking, frying, and much more. With such versatility, it is easy to see why potato flour has become so prominent.
Still, every food enthusiast loves to experiment, and you could be looking to try something else for a change.
What is the best substitute for potato flour? Cornstarch is the top substitute for many cooks. It is versatile and easy to work with, and you also get a lot of health benefits – just like potato flour. Cornstarch is also ideal for people on gluten-free diets, so you have a lot to gain from choosing it.
An Overview of Potato Flour
Potato flour is a type of flour that you get from processing whole potatoes. Usually, these potatoes are cooked, dried, and ground until they form a fine powder that is your flour.
Note that some brands don’t peel their potatoes before drying. However, it doesn’t matter much. Most commercial brands tend to peel their potatoes first as they believe this will provide a more consistent color and feeling. On the flip side, some more artisanal brands could decide to keep the peels since those components have some additional nutritional value that will help you out.
As for the taste, potato flour has a lot of similarities to regular potato. It is a tad earthy, and its flavor could be a bit strong. However, potato flour won’t overwhelm your dish easily since the potatoes have been adequately processed.
Note, however, that potato flour might bring a bit of that earthy feeling to your baked goods as well.
Why Replace Potato Flour?
- Compatibility with your food: Some people don’t prefer potato flour when making baked goods because of its earthy flavor. In this case, a substitute will be ideal.
- Gluten reservations: If you’re on a gluten-free diet, potato flour won’t work for you. Thankfully, you can find several substitutes to help you out.
Options for Potato Flour Substitutes
Best Overall Substitute for Potato Flour: Cornstarch
Many experts will recommend cornstarch as the ideal substitute for potato flour for several reasons. Both are incredibly identical, and you can use both for various similar reasons. Cornstarch is starch gotten from the kernels of corn. It is a famous culinary tool that you can easily find in sauces and soups.
Cornstarch is especially great when substituting for potato flour in frying operations. By coating your food items with cornstarch before frying, you can get juicy moisture and trap it in while you enjoy the crisp outer crust layer. It is precisely the same thing with potato flour.
Cornstarch also works well for people on gluten-free diets. So, you see why it is especially popular. Beyond frying, however, cornstarch also works as a thickening agent for glazes, marinades, sauces, pies, and a wide array of other dessert options. It helps to bring out the thickness in your meal and provides additional texture for you.
You will also love the fact that cornstarch is a one-for-one substitute for potato flour. However, note that cornstarch will need a little more work when you substitute it in bread. Cornstarch usually makes your bread less colorful and paler. It won’t affect the taste, but you might not necessarily want to go with overly light bread. It’s your call.
Best Substitute for Thickening Sauce: Tapioca Starch or Flour
Tapioca flour is another impressive gluten-free flour that has become incredibly popular over the past few years. It is primarily remarkable for baking as it can improve the quality and texture of your food. Many use it as an ideal substitute for all traditional wheat flour when baking.
At the same time, tapioca flour works for thickening gravy, sauce, and pie filling. The flour is flavorless, so while it won’t get you that earthy potato flavor, it also won’t bring any strange tastes to your dish. So, working with it is pretty straightforward.
Tapioca flour is pure white, so you won’t notice any changes in the color of your gravy or sauce. Since it dissolves very well, you’ll barely know it is there. Its simple job is to improve your dish’s natural taste and thickness, and it handles that task with remarkable tact. It helps to create a smooth and thick consistency that will help you enjoy your dish even more.
Keep in mind that tapioca flour isn’t a one-for-one substitute for potato flour. You will need 1.5 to two ratios per potato flour component, especially when you’re using it for thickening sauce and so on.
Best Substitute for Baking Bread: All-Purpose Flour
Most of the other substitutes mentioned have issues with bread because of their color or texture. Thankfully, you have something that works perfectly for bread – all-purpose flour. With this option, you get proper moisture and crispness with your bread. All-purpose flour also allows your bread to last much longer.
All-purpose flour might not absorb as much moisture as potato flour, but you can always add some water to increase moisture levels. Also, some brands produce gluten-free all-purpose flour. So, people on gluten-free diets can easily use those.
The loaf of bread you get with all-purpose flour might have less flavor and color than what you’d get with potato flour, but it will be able to rise relatively well. You also get a similar bread quality, so it’s a relative win-win for you on all fronts.
Keep in mind that all-purpose flour is a one-for-one substitute for potato flour. Your dough might be a tad thicker initially, but you will be able to smoothen it out through kneading.