Cassava Flour: A Superior Gluten-Free Alternative

Cassava Flour: A Superior Gluten-Free Alternative

Cassava – a root vegetable, long since a staple in the diet of millions of people across the world who depend on it to provide them with daily energy requirements. 

For cassava flour to be produced, the cassava is grated, dried, and ground into a powder – this can be used to substitute for traditional wheat flour in recipes, particularly as it is gluten-free and allergen-free. 

In terms of comparison, many people dislike alternatives to wheat flour because they lack the same texture, taste, and appearance for baking. 

On the other hand, cassava flour is generally regarded as the most similar flour alternative to wheat flour and can be used not only for baking needs – but also for pasta dough, to thicken gravy and soups, or even as pie filling. 

The substitution is a simplistic 1:1 in baking, so it makes it easy to change recipes.

Cassava Flour for Those with Gluten-Intolerance, Allergies, or Sensitivities 

Cassava flour is considered non-allergic and is extremely well tolerated in people that tend to have reactions, sensitivities, or allergies to gluten-containing grains, corn, nightshades, and soy. 

As it’s a tuber, it also provides a suitable substitute for those with nut or drupe allergies that cannot use almond flour or coconut flour but still want a grain-free option.

This makes cassava flour a Paleo-friendly option, and popular among those on autoimmune diets like GAPS as it is highly digestible.

Are Cassava Flour and Tapioca Flour the Same Thing?

Not exactly. 

Both tapioca and cassava are derived from the same root, but tapioca is only made from the starchy part of the root (often bleached) and contains less dietary fiber, contains more calories, and has a more neutral taste. 

Cassava has a mild, slightly nutty taste. 

Compared to tapioca and many grain alternatives, cassava is low in calories, fat content, and has more nutritional value than refined white flours (wheat and rice). 

As cassava flour is less starchy than tapioca, many find it more suitable for digestion.

Cassava flour contains some fiber and vitamin C compared to alternatives, and raw cassava is high in many minerals, nutrients, and B-vitamins. 

The flour contains resistant starch, which can feed the beneficial bacteria in the gut, and promote overall colon health. Not only associated with gut health benefits but resistant starch is also linked to improved insulin sensitivity

Doesn’t Cassava Contain Cyanide?

Yes – as do many plant foods, including almonds and spinach. 

This only applies if the cassava is eaten raw, and is not a concern with any cassava flour. 

Any and all commercially produced cassava flours (and tapioca flours) do not contain levels of cyanide – the cooking process, heating process, soaking, peeling and drying all eliminate the cyanogenic glycosides naturally present in the tuber. 

Cassava Flour – A Safe Alternative to Traditional Flours

As a tuber similar to sweet potatoes and yams – and eaten widely around the world, cassava offers us a nutritional alternative to gluten-containing grains for use in recipes. Those with nut allergies or coconut allergies have an option that is well-tolerated and gentle on the stomach. 

Its ease of use in recipes makes it a staple for anyone following a gluten-free diet or Paleo diet that still wants to incorporate baking into their daily life. 

Quality Cassava Flours Available with Healthy Planet:

Bob’s Red Mill Cassava Flour

Otto’s Naturals Cassava Flour

Anthony’s Goods – Premium Cassava Flour

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