Is your upcoming baking project calling for pastry flour, but you don’t have it in stock?
Don’t fret – you can still make a delicious dish without it.
In this article, you’ll learn about what pastry flour is and 5 great substitutes.
Read on to find out how to turn out delectable desserts with ease.
What’s Pastry Flour?
Pastry flour is a type of flour that differs from regular all-purpose flour.
It has a lower protein level and can give your cooked creations an improved texture due to its softness and fine grain.
This flour works best for pies, tarts, pastries, scones and other baked goods that require a delicate touch.
The added sweetness of pastry flour not only helps these baked items look more appealing but also gives them an additional layer of flavor.
If you are looking for alternatives to wheat pastry flour, almond or chickpea flours can also be used in these recipes with great results.
When using pastry flour, it’s important to use the correct amount – too much will cause your recipes to be dense and heavy, while too little won’t provide enough structure for the desired texture.
The trick when using this type of flour is to measure by weight rather than volume because measuring by volume can cause inaccuracies due to settling or compaction of the ingredients.
As with any baking project, sifting the pastry flour helps to incorporate air into the mixture which will help create a lighter result.
5 Best Pastry Flour Substitutes to Consider
This type of flour is ideal for making delicate baked goods, such as pie crusts, flaky biscuits, and pastries.
If you’re out of pastry flour and need to use one of the best substitutes for it, here are five great options to consider.
1 – All-purpose Flour
All-purpose flour is the most widely available and accessible alternative to pastry flour.
It can be used in many recipes where pastry flour is specified, making it a great substitute in a pinch.
Many home chefs also prefer to use all-purpose flour for their recipes as it is easier to handle, since it absorbs liquid better than pastry flour, which leads to a less sticky dough when kneaded.
This makes all-purpose flour an excellent option for baking items such as cookies and muffins.
2 – Cake Flour
Cake flour is an excellent substitute for pastry flour when baking delicate items such as cakes, muffins, and quick breads.
Cake flour has a lower protein content than all-purpose flour, which results in a more tender and lightly-textured crumb.
Many recipes that call for pastry flour can be successfully made with cake flour without compromising taste or texture.
To substitute cake flour for pastry flour, use one cup of sifted cake flour to one cup of pastry flour.
Cake and pastry flours will vary in coarseness depending on the brand; if your recipe suggests sifting, or if you tend to prefer lighter cakes or pastries, it is advisable to sift the cake/pastry mixture several times before combining with other ingredients (as one would do with all-purpose or plain wheat flour).
3 – Whole Wheat Flour
Whole wheat flour is made from grinding wheat berries into a fine powder and is often used in sweet and savory baked goods.
The nutrient-dense flour imparts a nutty, earthy flavor to bakes as well as a subtle density.
To substitute pastry flour for whole wheat flour, use ½ cup of whole wheat flour for every one cup of pastry flour.
When using whole wheat, you may want to reduce the amount of liquid or wet ingredients used in the recipe as this type of flour can make your bakes heavy and dense.
4 – Mix All-Purpose Flour with Cornstarch
If you don’t have any pastry flour, you can make your own by combining all-purpose flour with cornstarch.
To do this, start by adding 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour to a bowl.
Next, add 1/4 cup of cornstarch and mix the two ingredients together.
The combination of the flour and cornstarch will produce a light and fluffy dough similar to what can be achieved with pastry flour.
This is an excellent way to get a similar result without having to run out and buy a box of pastry flour.
5 – Almond Flour with Rice Flour
Almond flour is made from ground almonds, and it’s become a popular substitute for grain-based flours thanks to its mild nutty flavor and its high protein content.
It can be used to make all sorts of baked goods, including pastries.
For best results, mix almond flour with another lighter-textured flour, like rice flour.
Rice flour is made from finely milled white or brown rice and has a similar flavor and consistency as pastry flour.
A combination of almond and rice flours results in light, tender pastries that have a delicate texture.
Some bakers suggest using one part almond meal to four parts of white or light brown rice flour for the optimal blend of texture and sweetness in the recipe.
Pastry flour is a light and delicate flour that is great for baked goods.
It contains less gluten than all-purpose flour, making it perfect for flaky and tender pastries.
Some brands add a small amount of wheat germ or malted barley to their flours, which can leave a slightly sweet taste.
If you don’t have pastry flour on hand, there are a few good substitutions that can help you bake your favorite desserts without any major difference in texture or flavor.
Experimenting with these different options can create some interesting new flavors and textures in your favorite recipes.
Keep in mind that there are other ingredients to consider beyond just the type of flour when making substitutions; always follow recipe instructions closely when trying something new.
Carrie is a food writer and editor with more than 15 years of experience. She has worked for some of the biggest names in the food industry, including Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, and Martha Stewart Living.
As the Editor in Chief of IntroChicago.com, Carrie oversees all of the content on the site. She also manages the team of contributing writers and editors, who help to create delicious recipes, helpful tips, and informative articles that you’ll find on the site.
A native of the Chicago area, Carrie is passionate about all things food. She loves trying new restaurants and experimenting with new recipes in her kitchen. She’s also a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, so she knows a thing or two about food!