Okay, I think I might know the answer, but I just wanted clarification. =P I'm going to be making cookies and though the recipe calls for "blanched almond flour", I was wondering whether I could get away with using almond meal instead. The almond flour is a lot more expensive, so I'd prefer to use almond meal, but I want to consider what is best for the cookies! :P Thanks!
The texture will be different. I've used almond meal for all sorts of baked goods with good results though. The main difference is texture and color. Blanched almond flour will give you lighter cookies, the meal has the skin in it still and will give you brown flecks. You can turn that meal into flour if you pulse it in the food processor until it is a finer texture. It'll be a little sticker than flour though, a bit of tapioca flour mixed in might work as a flow agent to keep it drier (haven't tried it, just a thought.)
Almond flour is blanched almonds - no skin. Almond meal is regular almond or a mix of regular and blanched and is coarser than almond flour.
I used almond meal and ran through a sieve to get the finer parts out and jarred them up. If you don't care about the darker colour, just run the meal through your food processor, using a cold blade, to make it finer. It will take time because you'll need to go small batch, sieve, repeat. And if you're too enthusiastic you will get a nice batch of almond butter. Slow and steady and you should be fine.
Re: price, it's kind of figuring out how much time you have to spend making your own v. just grabbing a bag and being done with. Sometimes I just want it done for me :)
Almond meal is generally a good deal coarser than blanched almond flour, but I do use (for instance) the Trader Joe's almond meal on occasion because it's less expensive. I have had good results using almond meal in a pinch, but I also bake by weight only. (Measurement matters, and sometimes almond meal measures differently by volume than blanched almond flour because of the texture.) If you have a kitchen scale and can sub 28g/1oz 1:1 almond meal: almond flour, you should be okay.
If you don't like the texture of the coarser almond meal, whizz it in a coffee grinder for a few seconds (in small batches). That should help.
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