Coconut flour uses are plenty and gaining popularity with the diet conscious and those with gluten sensitivity. The weight watchers' enthusiasm is understandable. Coconut flour benefits include blood sugar management besides being light on the stomach. Made by grinding dried coconut meat, it has a soft, powdery texture and can be used as a substitute for wheat flour in small portions. Ideally, it works for those who enjoy the flavour of coconut in their dishes.
Coconut flour nutrition
Coconut flour's calories and nutrients make it attractive for those following a low-carb diet. It is rich in nutrients, particularly fibre, potassium, iron, manganese, and plant-based protein. Potassium is a vital nutrient for keeping the heart healthy and ticking. About one-fourth cup of coconut contains 120 calories and only 6 grams of sugar and 18 grams of carbohydrates. Its nutrient profile undoubtedly has the edge over that of wheat flour.
Coconut flour benefits
Consumption of coconut flour keeps blood sugar under control. Coconut flour has a low glycaemic index of 51 as opposed to 69 in wheat flour. Therefore, blood sugar levels fluctuate nominally after consuming coconut flour. Mainly, coconut flour is high in fat and fibre, thereby slowing down sugar release into the bloodstream.
Unadulterated coconut flour does not contain gluten. However, before buying, it is best to confirm product ingredient details to ensure the purity and sovereignty of the flour.
Fibre-rich food helps good gut health, so it's read and heard. Thankfully, coconut flour contains enough fibre that a 10-gram intake can meet a person's 10% daily fibre needs. Fibre-rich food also helps to keep the body weight in check.
Good for immunity
Coconut flour benefits constitute protein, which plays a vital role in the repair and health of the body and in improving immunity.
Coconut flour uses
Coconut's unique consistency lends a flavour and texture to thicken soups and stews. It is also frequently combined with other flour to make cakes, pastries, pizza, and wraps.
It is a good flour for those who like its nutty flavour in their food. Combining coconut flour with a stronger flavoured ingredient, such as chocolate, can suppress its nutty aroma. As coconut flour can absorb a considerable amount of liquid, it requires a more significant portion of binding agents, such as eggs or bananas, so the cakes and pizza crusts do not fall apart or crack.
So, it's a tricky flour to work with; follow tried and tested recipes to avoid disappointments in the kitchen.
Can coconut flour be substituted for regular flour?
Coconut flour can be used in a dish as a substitute for wheat, but only up to 25 per cent or so. It cannot be a 100 per cent replacement for wheat flour. Being a fruit-based flour, it does not have starch like other gluten-free flour like rice or corn. It is the presence of starch that helps flour gelatinize when combined with a protein such as egg. As a dried fruit, coconut soaks up more liquid than even nut-based flour such as almond.
Here are some tested coconut flour recipes for experimental cooks:
Coconut Flour Pancakes
They are soft and fluffy, just right for an indulgent breakfast!
Time: 25 minutes.
Coconut flour: 1 cup.
Oats flour/almond flour: 1 ½ cups.
Coconut milk/Almond milk: ½ cup.
Blueberries: 50 grams.
Coconut sugar: 1 tbs.
Salt: one pinch.
Coconut oil: As required.
Warm water: 1 cup.
Coconut chips: for garnishing.
- Mix all the flour and coconut milk, ensuring no lump in the batter.
- Next, add berries, sugar, and salt to the batter.
- If needed, add warm water for a good consistency.
- It is always advisable to let the batter rest for 15 minutes.
- Heat a non-stick griddle and drizzle 1 tsp oil over it.
- Pour in a ladleful of the pancake batter and spread it evenly.
- Cover it with a lid for a minute.
- Flip the pancake and cook it on the other side till it turns light brown.
- Top it with grated and roasted coconut chips.
Coconut Flour Banana Bread
For added nutrition to daily bread.
Time: One-hour-fifteen minutes.
Coconut flour: ½ cup.
All-purpose flour: 1 ½ cups.
Banana: 4 ripe and mashed well.
Coconut oil: 100 grams.
Butter: 100 grams.
Cinnamon: ½ tsp.
Milk: ½ cup.
Coconut sugar: 3 tbs.
Baking soda: ½ tsp.
Salt: One pinch.
Vanilla extract: ½ tsp.
Walnut: 100 grams.
- Mix milk, coconut oil, and sugar at room temperature and keep it aside.
- Add baking soda to the flour and mix it well.
- In a large bowl, add mashed banana and flour and whisk. Add the milk mixture in small quantities for a smooth batter.
- Add vanilla extract, cinnamon, and berries to the bread batter.
- Grease the loaf pan and add the flour mix. Top it up with walnuts.
- Bake it at 180° celsius for approx 40 minutes till the crust browns.
- After a day at room temperature, store the bread for up to 5 days in the fridge.
Coconut Flour Dosa
An instant dosa option with a coconutty flavour.
Cooking time: 20 minutes.
Coconut flour: ¼ cup.
Semolina flour: ½ cup.
Curd: ½ cup.
Green pepper: one small chopped.
Onion: one small chopped.
Carrot: one small chopped.
Cumin seeds: ½ tsp.
Salt: ½ tsp.
Mix semolina and coconut flour with curd and water.
Add salt and vegetables and let the batter rest for 15 minutes.
Spread the mixture on a griddle on medium heat and cook on both sides till brown.
Serve hot with coconut or tomato chutney.
For maximum health benefits, coconut flour works best when combined with other gluten-free flour, such as almonds. The flour should be used judiciously in any baking dish owing to its peculiar properties.
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