Gluten-Free Cake Flour Blend
A gluten-free cake flour blend that works flawlessly to make cakes and quick bread recipes perfectly airy, fluffy and light!
Post Celiac Diagnosis
After my diagnosis with Celiac disease, I’ve had to adapt many family cake-based recipes to eliminate the gluten in the wheat-based flour. My first trials of just switching out cup-for-cup gluten-free flour replacements ended up with a compost bin full of unacceptable baked batches. The textures ranging from gooey messes to being grainy with an almost sand-like feel left in my mouth. They were nothing I cared to eat myself or, for that matter, to share with anyone.
But Sometimes You Really NEED A Gluten-Free Cake Flour!
Still, there are times when a recipe, in my opinion, is made best by using a low-protein gluten-free flour that’s been blended specifically for making cakes. This Gluten-Free Cake Flour blend is the best blend for doing it.
After searching forever for a manufactured gluten-free cake flour substitute to the traditional wheat-based cake flour that my grandma used, my own blend evolved. Along the way, I learned that cake flour is a fine-milled, delicate flour with low protein content. The low protein content of the flour results in cakes that have a fine crumb, a good rise, and a super-tender texture. You achieve perfect texture because of how it is milled, making it finer, lighter, and softer so that baked goods made with it, when baked, become light and airy.
For a gluten-free cake flour substitute, I knew there had to be a way to find the right balance between the gluten-free type of flour used and gluten-free starches that would produce a lower protein blend mimicking a traditional cake flour. So, I experimented—a lot.
My Gluten-Free Cake Flour Blend
To come up with this gluten-free cake flour blend, I looked at the properties of traditional wheat-based cake flours how they are milled and made.
Wheat-based cake flour is milled from soft wheat, and it contains the lowest amount of protein (5 to 8-percent) compared to other all-purpose wheat-based flour blends (10 to 13-percent).
There are two major soft wheat varieties: soft red winter has a low protein content and is used as a blend in multipurpose flours for cakes, cookies, donuts, fine pastries, crackers, and flatbreads. Soft white is low-protein wheat that offers high yields and produces a lighter flour for cakes, cookies, crackers, and pastries. It is also used in many Middle-Eastern style flatbreads.
After several trials and fussing around with many gluten-free flours and starches to construct the recipe, I discovered that blending sweet white rice flour and brown rice flour in equal amounts with low protein gluten-free tapioca and potato starches for their (starchy) gelling properties significantly contributes to how air bubbles are trapped in the starch during the baking process. These starches also are known to work well with gum stabilizers to improve the batter’s consistency during mixing, enhancing the softness of the crumb and controlling the way the starch gels during the baking process.
I’ve discovered that sifting the gluten-free cake flour blend three times before adding it to the wet ingredients helps to ensure that the cake bakes light and fluffy.
This blend’s higher starch content helps prevent gluten-free baked cakes and quick bread from having that grainy texture found in some recipes that you may come across. At the same time, the low protein flour and the high starch combination of the blend make gluten-free cakes, coffee cakes, muffins, quick bread, and cookies perfectly airy, fluffy, and light with a fine crumb and soft, tender texture.
A gluten-free flour and starch blend that I’ve successfully been able to use as a suitable cake flour replacement. And, it works flawlessly to make many cakes and quick bread recipes very similar in taste and texture to favorite recipes that I remember from my childhood.
Gluten-Free Cake Flour Blend
- Large bowl
- 12 cup airtight storage container
- Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.
- Whisk until combined.
- Store in an air-tight container in a cool, dry cupboard until needed.
A good rule of thumb I follow is, to begin with, 1/2 teaspoon Xanthan gum for each 1 Cup of Gluten-Free Cake Flour Blend, record your notes, then adjust your recipe as necessary when you make it the next time.
(Nutritional values are an approximation. Actual nutritional values may vary due to preparation techniques, variations related to suppliers, regional and seasonal differences, or rounding.)
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