Thickening and flavourful agents that are best substitutes for cornstarch can include certain types of flour, seed, and potato starch. Whether it’s a savory gravy for a main course or a sweet mixture for pie filling, cornstarch may be thought of as the single most effective way to thicken anything. It can either transform a thinner stock into a sauce without changing the flavor or add an irresistible glossy finish to an almost picture-perfect dish. The importance of cornstarch cannot be stressed enough when baking and cooking a wide variety of recipes, even if you are unaware of it until the time comes.
However, due to its origin in a highly genetically modified crop, some individuals want alternative ingredients to use in their recipes. Below, we’ve discussed the 15 best substitutes for cornstarch that can be used as thickening agents, binders, and other applications. Whether you are looking for gluten-free, vegan, or all-natural options, we have got you covered.
15 Best Substitutes For Cornstarch
Cornstarch is a type of starch derived from the endosperm of the corn kernel. Cornstarch is most frequently used as a thickening agent, but it can also be added to baking and cooking to give foods more texture and flavor. Although cornstarch is a practical and adaptable ingredient, it might not always go well with dietary restrictions or personal preferences.
In many kitchens, cornstarch is a standard ingredient that is frequently used to thicken sauces, gravies, and stews. It has a neutral taste, making it ideal for a wide range of dishes. However, there are many reasons why you may need to find substitutes for cornstarch. For those with gluten or corn allergies, cornstarch is not an option. Additionally, some people are looking for healthier or more natural options, while others simply want to try something new. For those looking for substitutes for cornstarch, there are many options available. Here are some options for corn starch you can pick from:
The roots of numerous tropical plants are used to make the starchy powder known as arrowroot. It has a mild flavor and can be used as a thickening agent in place of cornstarch. Unlike cornflour, which degrades at high temperatures and turns slimy when heated, arrowroot does not.
The Maranta arundinacea plant’s roots are used to make arrowroot, which is a fine, white powder. It has a neutral taste and is an excellent thickener for sauces and puddings. Arrowroot has a smoother texture than cornstarch, making it a good choice for dishes that require a silky texture. Also, it contains powerful antioxidants, amino acids, and dietary fibers that can improve digestion and metabolism.
This approach might be the simplest because cornflour and all-purpose flour have many similarities. Additionally, as you likely already know, all-purpose flour has been shown to be effective in a number of baking and cooking activities in the past.
Keep in mind that not all types of flour will thicken food in the same way. While the answer to the question “Can I use all-purpose flour instead of cornflour?” is yes, you might have less success if you use a non-wheat variety of flour.
Another suitable alternative for sauces, tenderizing baked items, and pan frying is this tasteless, gluten-free ingredient made from cassava root. You should avoid boiling it because it cannot tolerate high temperatures as well as other substitutes.
Tapioca starch is extracted from the cassava and is widely used to coagulate your dish. It has a neutral taste, like cornstarch, and creates a glossy, translucent finish. Tapioca starch is also used to make tapioca pearls, a popular ingredient in Asian desserts.
It is made by grinding the root into a fine powder, which is then sieved and dried. Tapioca starch has a mild, slightly sweet taste and can be used in a variety of recipes, including for sauces and as a binder for baked goods.
Potato starch is made from the potato plant’s root and has a neutral taste, making it a good alternative to cornstarch. It is particularly effective in making your liquid diet thick a bit and also works well for your baking needs
This works well in place of rice flour for savory uses such as pan frying, deep frying, and sauces. The best part is that you can use it to finish off a sauce rather than use it to create a roux, and your sauce will quickly tighten up as a result.
Potatoes that have been digested and allowed to ferment are used to make potato starch. As an alternative to the cornflour, it is then dried and reduced to a powder-like consistency. In particular, potato starch works better when baking and creating gluten-free pastry than cornstarch.
Made from ground rice, rice flour can be added to any diet to keep a savory taste and coagulate your meal. It is suitable for a variety of dishes because of its mild, nutty flavor that is not overpowering.
Flour is also a good alternative for gluten-free baking. This alternative works well for shallow or deep frying and is a terrific addition to cookie doughs because it makes the finished product softer. Rice is processed into a thin powder called rice flour. In Asian cultures, it’s frequently used as a component of soups, rice noodles, and desserts.
As a natural gluten-free alternative to conventional wheat flour, it is well-liked by those with gluten-related diseases.
Rice flour is a good alternative to corn flour because it can also be used in almost any recipe.
Additionally, when combined with water, it has no color, making it particularly advantageous for thickening clear liquids. It is advised to use twice as much rice flour as cornflour to achieve the same results as you would with wheat flour. This makes it quite better than corn starch.
It can be used to form a paste with hot or cold water or in a roux, which is a mixture of fat and flour.
Produced by grinding walnuts, walnut flour has a deep, nutty flavor that can improve stews, soups, and sauces. Additionally, it adds a dense texture and nutty flavor to baked goods, making it useful.
Cornstarch is frequently replaced with coconut flour, which is produced by grinding coconut. Due to its high fiber content and lack of gluten, it is ideal for those who have sensitivity to the protein. The mild coconut flavor of coconut flour complements both sweet and savory meals.
Coconut flour is created from dried, powdered coconut meat and is a naturally occurring byproduct of the production of coconut milk. Similar to corn starch, coconut flour is a white or off-white flour that is widely used in baking. Since coconut flour doesn’t contain gluten, it can be used in recipes for baked products by people who follow gluten-free diets.
A popular substitute for cornstarch, chickpea flour is produced by grinding chickpeas. It is the perfect ingredient for vegetarian and vegan dishes because of its nutty flavor and high protein content. For those who are sensitive to gluten, chickpea flour is a good substitute because it is also gluten-free.
Ground flaxseed can be used as a great ingredient for your diet and also works well as a binding agent in baked goods. It has a nutty flavor and is high in fiber and Omega-3 fatty acids, making it a healthy alternative to cornstarch.
You might try substituting 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseeds with 4 tablespoons of water for cornflour when thickening a recipe. In place of around 2 teaspoons of cornflour, use this. It is important to note that when it comes to thickening cornstarch is quite better than ground flaxseed.
Almond flour is made from ground almonds and is a popular alternative to cornstarch. It has a rich, nutty flavor and is gluten-free, making it ideal for people with gluten sensitivities. Almond flour is also high in protein and fiber, making it a healthy alternative to cornstarch.
Soy flour is made from ground soybeans and is a popular alternative to wheat flour. It is high in protein and gluten-free, making it ideal for people with gluten sensitivities. Soy flour has a neutral flavor and can be used as a thickener for sauces, soups, and stews, as well as in baking.
Psyllium husk is a fiber-rich supplement derived from the seeds of the Plantago ovate plant. It can be used as a source of meal coagulation in diets, and also works well as a binder when baking. Psyllium husk has no flavor, making it ideal for a wide range of dishes.
Xanthan gum is a natural thickener derived from the fermentation of glucose, sucrose, or lactose. It has a neutral taste and is ideal for use in sauces, dressings, and gravies, as well as in baking. Xanthan gum is also gluten-free, making it a good alternative for people with gluten sensitivities.
Agar agar is a vegetarian alternative to gelatin, derived from seaweed. It is commonly used as a thickener for sauces, puddings, and jellies, and also works well as a gelling agent. Agar agar has a neutral flavor, making it ideal for a wide range of dishes.
Glucomannan is a fiber-rich supplement derived from the root of the konjac plant. It can be used as a thickener for sauces, soups, and stews, and also works well as a binding agent in baked goods. Glucomannan has no flavor, making it ideal for a wide range of dishes.
Try experimenting with different alternatives in your recipes to see which one works best for you. Remember to always pay attention to the specific recipe and ratios, as each choice may have slightly different properties that could affect the final outcome.
There are several substitutes for cornstarch that can be used in cooking and baking. Some alternatives include arrowroot, tapioca starch, potato starch, and others. Whether you have dietary restrictions or just looking for a healthier alternative, these options are worth exploring.
Corn starch contains gluten, so for people who have a gluten intolerance or Celiac disease, using alternatives to corn starch can help them avoid developing an allergic reaction. By doing research and experimenting with the various alternatives, you can find the perfect substitutes for cornstarch and reap the numerous health benefits associated with it, while also enjoying its unique flavor.