The Fresh Loaf

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Weight conversion for alternative flours

Russ's picture
Russ

Weight conversion for alternative flours

Hi, I've been baking bread for some time now, I've recently started making some loaves for a friend who has recently gone gluten free. I've made two loaves from a mix he had so far, but have been looking at recipes to make my own. I normally measure flour by weight, but the recipes I've found so far all only include volume measures. Does anyone here know what proper conversion ratios for gluten free flours are?

In case it helps, the ones I'm looking at are:

Buckwheat flour

Millet flour

Arrowroot starch

Corn starch

brown rice flour

amaranth flour

sweet rice flour

sorghum flour

tapioca flour (is this the same thing as tapioca starch, or is it different, as with potato flour/starch?)

flax seed meal

 

Thanks,

Russ

 

RodInBangkok's picture
RodInBangkok

Suggest you use the SR24 database from the USDA:

ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/list

There you will see a density conversion factory that will allow you to convert.

My first post here so I think posting a url is triggering a spam filter, but google search sr24 database and you should find a link to search there if the above does not work.

 Rod

 

Russ's picture
Russ

Thanks Rod, looks like a great resource. I've only begun to look up ingredients, but I've found a couple conversions already.

 

Russ

gfyarnnerd's picture
gfyarnnerd

I just did something similar so that I could work out the cost of ingredients, and I ended up actually having to measure out how many cups I could get out of a bag of brown rice or millet flour.  Since most of the recipes I have seen are in volume measurements, that's what I needed.  Are you using recipes that go by weight?  I haven't come across many of those in the US.  Do you have a recommendation for a good scale?

Another thought: are you aware of the possibility of gluten contamination in your friend's bread if you are a frequent baker of wheat bread?  It's very nice of you to do baking for him, but be alert to trace amounts of wheat flour that could lurk in your kitchen.  Flour can remain suspended in the air for a day after using it, falling onto surfaces and into your batter, and there can be flour in the crevices of your mixer or the pores of your wooden spoons.  When I first went gluten-free I gave away 5 pounds of sugar because I was making a batch of regular flour cookies for my kids and scooped it out with a measuring cup that I had used for flour.  That made the sugar contaminated and I couldn't use it for myself.  I eventually went completely wheat-free in all my baking, even for the rest of the family, to avoid that kind of thing making me sick.  Be sure to clean very thoroughly before baking for your friend - anything that has touched wheat must be completely clean.

Russ's picture
Russ

I find weight measurements (in metric) to be the simplest way to go. I haven't found many recipes that use them, my plan is to convert before I begin a recipe. I've done it this way with standard (non-gf) bread recipes and even if I had to convert each time it would still be simpler and less annoying than using cup measures.

My scale is an OXO. It does a good job, but I think if I were to buy today I would go for the one at nybakers.com. It looks to be just as good and costs much less. Here's a link:

http://nybakers.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=8&products_id=80

I'm not affiliated with this shop and haven't even purchased from them,  but the founder is a regular on The Fresh Loaf and he seems well regarded around here.

 

I am aware of the likelihood of contamination with wheat flour, though I do try my best to be careful. I have also warned my friend of it and he seemed unconcerned. He only recently began a gluten free diet and when he did he requested that I try to make some bread for him.