Oat flour is one of the most underrated gluten-free flours. It is definitely on my top ten list of the best gluten-free flours.
Homemade oat flour is so easy to make. Plus, it’s a cheaper alternative to almond flour and coconut flour which can be expensive.
What Is Oat Flour
Oat flour is oats that have been ground into a fine powder-like flour. Most people recommend using commercial oat flour, especially when making cakes since it gives baked goods a fluffy texture.
However, I think homemade oat flour is just as good as commercial oat flour. The trick is to grind it longer, so it has a finer texture. This will give your cakes and baked goods a light and fluffy texture.
Is Oat Flour Gluten-Free
Generally speaking, oats, as well as oat flour, are gluten-free. However, you should always double-check to make sure the oats are certified gluten-free.
Sometimes oats can be processed in the same facilities as gluten products like all-purpose flour. While this may seem insignificant if you are preparing a dish for someone with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity, a small issue can become a big problem in no time. Save yourself the trouble and inspect the package for a certified gluten-free label.
Types Of Oats
There are four types of oats: rolled oats, instant oats, quick-cooking oats, and steel-cut oats. Rolled oats or old-fashioned oats are produced from steamed oats flattened between rollers.
Instant oats are heavily processed oats. They are used for prepackaged oatmeal that contains dried fruits, flavorings, or added sugars. Instant oats have lower fiber levels than rolled or steel-cut oats.
Most people assume quick oats are the same thing as rolled oats, but they are not the same thing. Like rolled oats, quick oats are produced with steamed oats flattened with a roller. However, quick oats are cut into smaller pieces.
Steel-cut oats are oat kernels that have been stripped of the bran and cut into 2-3 pieces. Steel-cut oats are known for their coarse texture and long cooking time.
So, what is the best type of oats to make homemade oat flour? Ideally, gluten-free rolled or old-fashioned oats or quick oats are the best oats for making oat flour. Although you can use steel-cut oats, I would not recommend it. Steel-cut oats will create oat flour that has a gritty, coarse texture.
Instant oats are out of the question when it comes to making oat flour. Since they are loaded with added sugars and flavorings, your baked goods have the same flavor as the instant oats you used to make the oat flour.
Is It Cheaper To Make Your Own Oat Flour
Yes, it is cheaper to make homemade oat flour. The last time I checked, oat flour was about $7-$9 in my country.
I bought a 2 1/4 pound canister of oats for $8.10. Therefore, it only cost me $2.45 to make 2 pounds of homemade oat flour.
Health Benefits Of Oats
Oats contain several bioactive nutrients such as phenolic compounds, vitamins, and minerals. Oats also contain dietary fiber, decreasing your risk of developing chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes or heart disease.
Furthermore, oats also contain antioxidants. Antioxidants can decrease serum cholesterol and prevent the development of specific cancer cells.
Studies have also found oats to decrease hypertension, blood sugar and cholesterol levels, and stimulate weight loss. Oats can also help manage childhood asthma and may provide immunomodulatory and antiatherogenic effects.
How To Use Oat Flour
Since I am showing you how to make oat flour, let’s discuss how you can use it. Oat flour has a light texture. Its absorbency rate is similar to coconut flour. Therefore, it soaks up more moisture than regular all-purpose flour. You can use oat flour in recipes that call for wheat flour. However, do not replace all the wheat flour with oat flour. The results will be disastrous.
It’s best to replace 25%-30% of the all-purpose flour called for in a recipe with oat flour. If you are making a gluten-free recipe, substitute the remaining flour with coconut flour, almond flour, cassava flour, or another gluten-free flour.
If you want to use only oat flour, look for recipes that only use oat flour (I will be uploading a few oat flour recipes soon).
I’ve used oat flour in my homemade gluten-free all-purpose flour. I then used gluten-free flour to make zucchini squash bread. However, you can also use oat flour to make gluten-free cakes. It also lightens up the dense texture of carrot cake, bread, or muffins.
Lastly, you can dust your cake pans with oat flour to prevent the food from sticking to the pan. For example, after you grease a pan with butter or spray it with non-stick cooking spray, you can dust it with oat flour instead of wheat flour. Your gluten-free baked goods will never stick to the pan again.
How To Store Homemade Oat Flour
Oat flour is no different from any other type of flour. So, it can be stored in the same way. The key is to store the oat flour in a cool, dry place.
I store my oat flour in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. However, you can also store your oat flour in the fridge or freezer. The oat flour will last for 3 months.