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While not something I'm overly dogmatic about I try to keep my carbohydrate intake relatively low, especially during the day so as to not become tired.

I've found that in some recipes, particularly for pancakes or breading (for frying) I can substitute almond meal or a combination of almond meal and fine parmesan and usually come out okay. In fact almond meal pancakes turn out great.

I'm interested to hear of any other flour substitutes others have used, even if they aren't low carb as it might serve for inspiration to find further subs.

Cheers.

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+1 for the almond meal idea –  Martin Sep 16 '10 at 20:22

3 Answers 3

Coconut Flour can also be used in place is several recipes

Some Recipes featuring coconut flour

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I make a lot of GF food and coconut flour is awesome! –  Eric Goodwin Sep 17 '10 at 1:34

Wheat Flours at Cook's Thesaurus discusses varieties of wheat flours and their substitutions in general baking, yeast breads, and as breading agents.

And here's a reference discussing "the carbohydrate-content, dietary fiber content and 'net carbs' in all types of flour": Carbohydrates in Flour and Baking Foods.

I consult these pages as jumping off points when I'm altering my baking recipes. I'm a big fan of mixing flours to come up with lower-carbohydrate and more nutritionally sound baked goods (white flour isn't the most nutritional option out there, no matter that it's one of the most common options in baking). Oat, spelt, and soy flours figure in a lot of my recipes (note that using soy flour calls reducing the baking temperature called for in a recipe by 25°F, and that soy has a very pronounced flavor that not everyone likes).

The more you learn about the various flour options, the easier it is to make substitutions with confidence, so I encourage you to do a bit of reading. Of course, if you're rushed, baking sites (ones that sell high-quality flour, such as Bob's Red Mill) tend to tell you right on the page how much of their flour to substitute for wheat flour.

As a general rule, the more whole grain flours you use the better because of their higher fiber contents. If you subtract the fiber from the carbohydrate count, you find the net carbohydrate of the flour in question, and it's the net carbohydrate that tells you how your sugar levels will be affected. One carbohydrate serving is 15 grams of carbohydrate total.

One cup of all-purpose flour has 95 grams of carbohydrate and 3 grams of dietary fiber, which gives each cup a net carbohydrate amount of 92 grams (which is 6.13 carb. servings). One cup of whole wheat flour, on the other hand, has 87 grams of carbohydrate and 15 grams of dietary fiber, which gives each cup a net carbohydrate amount of 72 grams (which is 4.8 carb. servings). Even if you're baking a bread that isn't particularly low in carbohydrate, getting the benefit of the increased nutrition and fiber from a whole grain flour will benefit you.

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If you are looking for wheat flour substitutes, you might want to look into gluten free baking. While it's more than you need, in gluten-free baking no wheat flour is used. Note that gluten-free baking has many subtleties and complexities (as opposed to almond meal and parmesan breading, which is quite tasty and similar to panko or other breadcrumbs).

If you want to just mix in other grains with your wheat flour, the book Good to the Grain might provide the sort of thing you are looking for.

On this Q&A site I've seen rye touted as a low-carb flour, and you can make 100% rye sourdough bread, for example.

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