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The Wheat-Free Page


32 Alternatives to Wheat
Featuring 2 Wheat-Free Recipes

OK, so you can't eat wheat. Big deal. While that's admittedly not a fun diagnosis, nevertheless you can take the challenge and have some fun discovering new foods. The following list is more than any one person will want to deal with - but it represents choices for you to try. 

Do consider combining a few flours for different results. For example, oat flour by itself can produce moist but heavy baked goods; barley and rice, on the other hand, are light and tend to be dry. Put either of them together with oat flour in a 50-50 mixture and surprising things happen. The mixture almost handles like unbleached (white) wheat flour. 

Other combos I've enjoyed include: 

  • Two parts amaranth with one part chickpea (or bean) flour 

  • Equal parts amaranth, quinoa and unroasted buckwheat flours 

  • Buckwheat flour made from unroasted groats, lightened with two tablespoons of arrowroot or tapioca starch flour in the bottom of each cup before filling it with the flour. (Ditto for teff flour.) 

  • Equal parts spelt and Kamut flours 

  • Equal parts barley and rye flours

Experiment for proportions that you like, because different ratios will produce different results. Keep notes of which ingredients you use, in what amounts, so you can duplicate your successes and tweak those combinations you want to improve. And for heaven sake, have fun when you're playing with new foods in your kitchen!

Even though the following foods may not be in your local grocery store, you will surely find some in your health food store - and if they aren't generally stocked, perhaps they will special order them for you. All are readily available by mail order, and sources are given.


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 Here is a list of wheat-free alternative flours

  1. Almond - flour and meal

  2. Amaranth - whole (as hot cereal), flour, puffed

  3. Barley (G)whole hulled, flakes, flour

  4. Buckwheat - whole groats, cereal, flour (raw or roasted)

  5. Cassava - flour (whole root, dried, ground; tapioca starch is refined from this). Not generally available in stores, see mail order source.

  6. Chestnut - flour

  7. Chickpea - flour

  8. Flaxseed - whole and meal

  9. Hazelnut - flour and meal

  10. Jerusalem artichoke - flour

  11. Kamut (G)whole grains, flakes, flour, pasta

  12. Kuzu (also called Kudzu) - starch

  13. Legume Flours - yellow & green pea, red & green lentil, white, lima & pinto bean

  14. Malanga - flour

  15. Millet - whole grain, flour

  16. Milo/sorghum - flour

  17. Oat (G)- Scotch style, flour, oat bran, rolled flakes

  18. Pearled Millet - whole, flour

  19. Poi (dehydrated) - starch and flour

  20. Potato, white - flour, starch

  21. Quinoa - whole, flour, puffed

  22. Rice (short, medium, long grain) - whole, flour, pasta, puffed, cakes, crackers

  23. Rye (G)- flakes, flour, WASA cracker(Light Rye has no yeast, only rye flour, water, and salt)

  24. Soy - flakes, grits, flour

  25. Spelt (G) - whole grains, flakes flour, pasta

  26. Tapioca - starch flour, "pearls" of small, medium or large granules, such as Minute Tapioca (see also cassava)

  27. Teff - whole (for hot cereal), flour

  28. Water Chestnut - flour

  29. White Sweet Potato - flour

  30. Wild Rice - whole

  31. Yam (true yam) - flour

  32. Lotus - flour, pasta


Sources of Alternative Flours

Arrowhead Mills

My Recommended Book List

 Allergen-Free Recipes
Wheat-Free Recipes: Amaranth, Buckwheat & Quinoa


Amaranth, buckwheat and quinoa (pronounced "keen-wa") are not true grains, so may be pure gold to those who react to all grains! All will be found in most health food stores. For best results, buy fresh amaranth and quinoa flours where there is a quick turn-over - and smell it before baking with it to be sure it isn't rancid. (Then store air tight in your freezer.) Also, buy whole UNROASTED buckwheat groats and grind your own flour in a blender. This is easily done as the groats are not nearly as hard as grains of wheat, so you don't need a special grinder or mill. I grind one pound of groats in my blender, half cup at a time, in 7 minutes, and that includes rubbing the flour through a strainer to catch and discard any large particles that may be present. The flavor and texture of this mixed-flour pan bread is superior to that of bread made from any one flour. While not a sandwich bread, this corn-bread-type-bread is wonderful with salad, soup or stew, or for breakfast (topped with a fruit sauce or a little all-fruit jam).
Yields 1 pie plate (6-8 pieces)

  • 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon amaranth flour 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon unroasted buckwheat flour 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon quinoa flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 3 tablespoons oil

  • 1/4 cup maple syrup

  • Water to make 1 cup liquid

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat a 9-inch pie plate with non-stick spray, or oil and dust with flour. Combine flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, salt, and stevia powder or date sugar, if using, in a bowl and whisk to blend. Measure the oil, maple syrup, and water in a 2-cup glass measuring cup, and stir. Make a "well" in the center of the flour and pour in the liquids. Use a rubber spatula to stir a few swift strokes - only until all the dry ingredients are moistened. Transfer at once to prepared pan. Batter will be quite stiff, yet when you scrape it into the pan, it still pours. (In other words - although stiff, it's still a heavy batter rather than a dough.) Bake about 20 minutes or until the center springs back when lightly touched, and a pick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan 10 minutes before cutting. Best served warm.

Substitute pineapple, apple, orange, pear or white grape juice for the water, and add an additional 1/4 teaspoon baking soda to dry ingredients. Resembles coffeecake.

Following the recipe for SWEET A-B-Q "CORN BREAD", add ONE of the following to the dry ingredients, whisking well to mix:

  • 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons powdered ginger

  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (gives bread a very nice flavor!)

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground nutmeg

    If you don't have all three flours on hand, or if you don't tolerate one of them, use 3/4 cup of each of the two remaining flours, plus 3 tablespoons of either ONE of the flours. Texture and flavor will still be better than with any one flour alone.


    Cake without eggs doesn't keep very well. Solution? Make a small cake to feed up to 4 people. If you've a 6-1/2 inch skillet with an ovenproof handle, such as Corning's, you can cut this recipe in half to make just the amount of cake you will use. A small cake like this will serve three generously, or four modestly. Freeze any that won't be used the same day, but use soon - within 2 weeks - and top the thawed cake with applesauce or other fruit sauce (to moisten).
    Full recipe yields 6-8 wedges, half recipe yields 3-4 wedges.

    1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon amaranth flour 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon unroasted buckwheat flour 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon quinoa flour 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 teaspoon cream of tartar 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/3 cup oil 2/3 cup maple syrup 1/4 cup chopped pecans, optional

    Preheat oven to 350. Non-stick spray a pie plate. Combine dry ingredients and whisk well, or sift. Combine oil and syrup in measuring cup and pour over dry ingredients. Using a rubber spatula, stir until flour disappears. Scrape batter into prepared pan. Scatter the chopped pecans over the top, if using. Bake 22 minutes or until a pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes before cutting.

    Surprisingly good! Serve plain as you would a coffee cake, with a cup of tea, or use as dessert. Use leftovers the next morning for breakfast: Split each wedge horizontally and top it with a fresh or cooked fruit sauce, shortcake-style.

    (Example: Cook 1 bag of frozen unsweetened peaches + 3/4 cup water + 1/4 cup honey or maple syrup. In about 10 minutes when fruit is tender, stir in 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon tapioca starch dissolved in 1/4 cup cool water. Stir for about two minutes until it bubbles, thickens, and the liquid becomes clear. [May cut peach slices into bite-size pieces while fruit is cooking, if you wish.] Spoon warm peach sauce over the warm Maple Cake or Sweet A-B-Q "Corn Bread" for a delicious - and memorable - breakfast.)

    Whisk 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons powdered ginger into the dry ingredients of either the bread or cake above, and mix well. Top with the peach sauce, above. Oh, Yum! (Author's personal favorite)

    2005  Ronald J. Grisanti D.C., D.A.B.C.O
    NOTICE: This information is provided for educational purposes. Any medical procedures, dietary changes, or nutritional supplements discussed herein should only be undertaken on the advice of a qualified physician.

    Ronald J. Grisanti, D.C., D.A.B.C.O
    The Grisanti Center of Integrative Medicine
    4200 East North Street, Suite 14 Greenville, SC 29615
    (864) 292-0226 FAX: (864) 268-7022

    This page was last reviewed on March 22, 2005