flours - almond, coconut, tempura, plantain, or tapioca - confusion!

by 13 · March 11, 2014 at 03:57 AM

ok so theres the long paleo tradition of using almond and coconut flour - im fairly new(ish) to paleo but very clued up on it. but i want to make paleo bread and other paleo baked goods to aid my diet. here is my dilema - almond flour - too high in fat for my liking coconut flour - too expensive but using it begrudgingly upon further research whats the views on tempura flour, plantain flour or tapioca flour. and has anyone ever baked with any of these? if so whats it like?

thanks !


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15 Replies

1630 · September 12, 2012 at 04:13 PM

Yes i am going to go off topic and say this...EAT REAL FOOD

No paleo bread, cookies etc. Spend the extra cash on some nice produce, grass fed beef etc

106 · November 18, 2012 at 07:24 PM

Sigh. All the Paleo purists give Paleo a bad name. Yes, we should all be eating nothing but whole foods. Preferably, wild animals we've harvested ourselves with a bow and arrow made from sinew and flint. We should serve this with a side of wild-harvested greens and tubers. C'mon people. Paleo baking is here to stay. Why be so self-righteous about doing Paleo "correctly"? You guys are a drag. Baked goods made from Paleo-friendly ingredients are what some of us need. I'm a foodie and I have a sweet tooth and guess what? My almond flour cookies that I eat in strict moderation keep me from wanting other, much worse things. Instead of bingeing on croissants, I have a few homemade almond flour chocolate chip cookies and my cravings are satisfied and the protein and fat in them are good for me.

If you don't like the idea of Paleo flours, then quit responding to these threads! Fanaticism in any walk of life--be in politics, diet, religion, or any subject--is unpleasant at best and at worst, dangerous. Please lay off!

613 · September 12, 2012 at 05:26 PM

Tempura flour? To my knowledge, this is just the type of wheat flour mixture used to make tempura fried foods.

Plantain flour I've never heard of or seen a recipe for. I'm assuming it's made from plantains, and I would guess that it can't stand alone in baking.

I've never known tapioca starch (it's not really a flour) to be used alone for baking either, only as an additive to other flours - usually mixes including flours such as sorghum, rice, potato starch and gums such as xanthan.

Try iherb.com for an inexpensive source of coconut or almond flour. Fat is not your foe. Make these baked goods rarely.

I know this is not paleo, but personally, I believe it has a place in a healthy diet. Occasionally I make sweet or savory pancakes from soaked teff flour. Teff is a nutrient dense grain, and soaking reduces phytates and enzyme inhibitors. I use the Bob's Red Mill pancake recipe and add spices to taste.

But I agree that you should focus more on eating whole foods and changing your way of looking at meals, rather than looking for paleo versions of SAD foods.

2903 · September 12, 2012 at 06:43 PM

I use tapioca flour for bread-like items at times and as a thickener for sauces (to make a roux, for example). It's also cheap if you can find a nice Asian market.

Almond is good for items like cookies or banana bread.

Coconut - I haven't figured out what I like to use it for, but I have it on hand and occasionally use it.

While many people are against Paleo baking, I'm wondering if they have small children. I usually bake to keep my family on board and interested. I'll say okay to a second cookie if I know what's in it and that they are good ingredients.

5584 · February 02, 2013 at 02:49 PM

there's nothing wrong with eating fat. it's good for you. the other flours you mentioned are grains, so if you include grains in your diet, it really isn't paleo baking. i bake with a mix of almond flour and coconut flour. i find the 3/4 almond and 1/4 coconut is a good ratio.

18794 · September 12, 2012 at 08:04 PM

ok so theres the long paleo tradition of using almond and coconut flour - im fairly new(ish) to paleo but very clued up on it. but i want to make paleo bread and other paleo baked goods to aid my diet.

As others have already chimed in on, there is no paleo bread. Deal with it.

You can paleo-ify all the SAD or traditional foods you want. Hopefully, this drives their composition closer to something that can sneak into a paleo diet. Definitely, definitely not paleo.

Having laid out that disclaimer ...

here is my dilema - almond flour - too high in fat for my liking

Almond flour is fantastic. What is "too much fat", insofar as how often are you planning to eat these paleo-ified treats? All nut flours will have a good amount of fat, usually high in omega 6s's, but otherwise just fine to have on occasion.

coconut flour - too expensive but using it begrudgingly upon further research

There are plenty of nut flour/meals. You can even make them yourself from whole nuts. Check a site like nuts.com to find options that are readily available. Once you get some experience baking with the varieties, you'll probably find one or two favorites.

whats the views on tempura flour, plantain flour or tapioca flour. and has anyone ever baked with any of these? if so whats it like?

Tempura flour is regular old wheat flour (albeit a bit lighter). It is a grain, it is wheat, it is not paleo.

I've never used plaintain flour.

However, plaintain flour is a high starch flour, and I've used both potato and tapioca/cassava/yuca flour/starch to make treats like biscuits and rolls (great for paleo-ified, grain-free bread type options when I have guests over).

Baking paleo-ified traditional foods, or treating yourself to a less-horrible-than-SAD SAD food, can be great fun. It's generally food that is comfortable to conventional eaters and paleo treaters. Good luck experimenting and baking!

3029 · January 19, 2013 at 05:46 PM

Coconut flour, no pufas, delicious and fairly dense so you don't have to add a lot, a lot more room for nutrient dense eggs, coconut oil and good quality nutients. Hence, I make banana bread with it and for 12 pieces I only have to use a 1/4 cup coconut flour. While the rest is 6 eggs, coconut milk, bananas, vanilla and cinnamon.

0 · March 11, 2014 at 03:57 AM

Manda, this is my favorite grain free bread and I have experimented with lots of different recipes http://scdfoodie.com/grain-free-bread/ . If you are concerned about the fat intake just use it as a treat item. I love it for french toast. I have used arrowroot to make a cheesy bread for pizza and to thicken gravy. And tapioca flour for a pastry for apple turnovers. But 99% of the time I use Honeyville Blanched Almond Flour, it really is the best almond flour and Costco now carries it, and coconut flour which may seem expensive but you use so little in most recipes it really isn't too bad. Here is a link to my FB page with my favorite Paleo recipes in the file section. https://www.facebook.com/groups/171782539643665/@manda19

0 · September 27, 2013 at 04:24 AM

So Greymouser says: "as others have already chimed in on, there is no paleo bread. Deal with it." Why? There is absolutely paleo bread. It is eaten every day by people all around the world where there is no wheat, rice, corn or other grains. They use ground cassava, plantain, yams, yucca... to make "bread". It is not mass produced white sandwich bread but it is a bread all the same.

0 · June 28, 2013 at 01:49 AM

Try this:


0 · April 15, 2013 at 04:48 PM

I am a lean foodie that has gone through the different trends and numerous studies on food. The one thing that I will state prior to my answer is that I do agree with Paleo in regards to grassfed, Monterey Bay Fish list and organic/local foods. The key is to eat smart and with portion control in regards to your workoutregimen. Remeber Adkins???? Best diet ever...many people had significant health problems years later...no mention of lifestyle...they are all diets. Okay...stop rambling...my husband really likes this lifestyle...we are in our early 50s and he is a huge crossfit and extreme athlete supporter. We love food and it is a significant part of our lifestyle It is an expensive trial an error process on transitioning recipes to meet both of our lifestyles. I prefer cassava/tapioca flour in baking of molten cakes, popovers and muffins. I have always used the tricks of sweetener to keep carbs and sugar intake down so this is not a problem. I have used coconut and almond flour, however, you really need to use it with items such as coconut and other textured ingredients. They also cook differently based upon liquid ingredients and oven type. A trick is to place the coconut or almond in food processer to grind it to a smoother consistency. I cannot handle the coconut oil...it bothers my digestive system and the recents studies still have not been substantiated outside of Codain's info. I don't buy the Govt run FDA so I rely on nonprofit independent studies...use organic infused olive oils such as vanilla and dark chocolate(it is infused with 82% carob). Good luck and experiment...my trick is 3-1 with success rate of recipes

174 · February 02, 2013 at 03:38 PM

I make "Paleo Bread" every once in a while for my SAD nieces and siblings, so that I try to diminish the harm they are getting from their diet. (I'm fooling myself, but I still try to get them to join my side)

Elana Amsterdam has a nice Paleo bread recipe on her site and it requires little coconut flour. I suggest you buy a little bit of almond flour and a little less of coconut flour, you'll be able to use them for this recipe, and you'll like it, most probably. I add nuts, and spices to it, and sometimes I add "ground" olives.

I suggest you do this when you have people coming over, it helps you not feel "alone" in a non-paleo environment, and you might let non-paleo people stop harassing you. If they do anyway.

In my experience, if you bake it often you'll get used to it and migghht be prone to falling off the wagon..often.

1401 · February 02, 2013 at 01:21 PM

Coconut flour is very easy to make! You don't need to buy it. I have a recipe for it on my blog at http://ilovetraditionalfoods.blogspot.ca/2013/02/how-to-make-coconut-flour.html

105 · January 19, 2013 at 06:05 PM

Dear Manda, (wow nobody addresses each other like that anymore!)

From what I can tell, it isn't the inclusion of "high" dietary fat in bread (even unconventional flours like you mentioned possibly using) that is the problem. It is the SUGAR AND THE FAT together in the same meal that causes the problem.

Almonds. Dark Chocolate. Coconut. All considered healthy separately and in balanced amounts. That doesn't mean that eating a couple of Mounds and Almond Joys isn't a fat-making factory in action! It's the combination of the FAT and SUGAR that is the problem.

So make your bread. But know that the fat alone isn't the whole issue or even really part of the problem at all. Balanced amounts of dietary fats ARE good for you as you well know.

Find me a good recipe for sugarless bread (or at least one that doesn't spike blood sugar) and I'll try it (I think this is what you really should be looking for too).

I hope this tidbit of information helps, even if it doesn't answer your need directly.

Sincerely, (there I go again)

Eric :)

541 · January 19, 2013 at 05:40 PM

i have made some great biscuits using almond and coconut flour. i tend to use arrowroot or tapioca as thickeners or as an addition to other flours in gluten free baking to give them a lighter/fluffier feel.

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