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Substitute Whole Wheat Flour for All-Purpose Flour

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It wouldn’t surprise anybody if, as a baker, all-purpose flour is one of the first items you grab when you go grocery shopping. Most baking techniques need the use of flour in some form or another. For many years, all-purpose flour has shown its usefulness in the baking business, whether as the major component or as one of the supporting elements.

Whole wheat flour, on the other hand, is underappreciated as an excellent substitute for all-purpose flour. Whole wheat flour has been shown in numerous recipes to effectively replace the applications that all-purpose flour is generally recognized for, thanks to its high nutritional content. Whole wheat flour adds a completely new layer of protein, fiber, and mineral value to your favorite baked goods, allowing you to enjoy them with increased nutrition.

Yet, using whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour in baking results in a completely different texture, weight, and appearance of the completed product. It is critical to get acquainted with the right procedures and proportions to use in other recipes.

Whole Wheat FlourNutrition Facts

All-Purpose Flour Vs. Whole Wheat Flour

All-purpose flour is another term for white flour. To achieve the proper protein content, it is milled from hard red wheat or a combination of hard and soft grains in an 80:20 ratio (10 to 12 percent). When the bran (outer layer of the wheat kernel) and germ (inner seed) have been removed, only the endosperm remains.

All-purpose flour, as the name indicates, may be used to produce a variety of baked goods such as bread, biscuits, pizza, cookies, muffins, and so on. It is also used to thicken gravies and sauces.

Whole-wheat flour, on the other hand, is made up of entire wheat kernels, endosperm, bran, and germ. As a consequence, it has more protein (up to 15%) as well as more fiber, minerals, and taste than all-purpose flour.

Whole-wheat flour, on the other hand, has a bad reputation for making baked goods thick and stodgy because the bran and germ content inhibits gluten formation. As a result, baked goods produced with whole wheat flour are thicker and heavier than those made with all-purpose flour.

Substituting All Purpose Flour with Whole Wheat Flour in Recipes

Since whole wheat flour has a greater protein, fiber, and mineral content than all-purpose flour, many individuals may prefer it over all-purpose flour in the end.

If you want your baked goods to be healthier, have a more powerful flavor, or have a different flavor from white bread, explore using whole wheat flour. Working with whole wheat flour, although similar to working with white flour, may provide its own set of obstacles.

In the following recipes, whole wheat flour may be substituted for white flour:

Cookies, Brownies 

Making the move to whole wheat flour in cookies and other sweet delights is simple. Since most cookies aren’t lighter in color, the darker colour that whole wheat imparts will be hardly noticeable. Additionally, the gritty feel of whole wheat flour is often hidden by whatever ingredient is there (chips, nuts, oats, etc.).

When used 100%, the graininess of whole wheat may be visible in shortbread, sugar cookies, brownies, and blondies. As a result, the optimal amount of whole wheat flour replacement is roughly 50%.

Baked products should also be let to rest overnight before serving to soften the bran and enhance the texture.

To compensate for the increased absorption qualities of whole wheat flour, add two tablespoons of water (or another beverage) for every cup. Cookies will spread more thinly than they should if this is not done.

Bread, rolls, and pizza

The natural taste and texture of whole wheat are amplified in yeast-baked foods. If you substitute 100% of the white flour in bread, dinner rolls, and pizza crust with whole wheat flour, the bread, dinner rolls, and pizza crust will all look, taste, and rise differently.

Since whole wheat flour absorbs more moisture than white flour and produces a stiffer dough, using 100% whole wheat flour instead of white flour may drastically lessen dough rise. This is because the more difficult it is to enlarge the dough, the stiffer it becomes. As a result, it is advisable to start with a 25% substitute and progressively raise the amount.

To avoid this, add two tablespoons of liquid for every cup of whole wheat flour used. Let 30 minutes for the dough to rest before kneading. This enables the flour to completely absorb the liquid, resulting in a softer dough that rises as high as white flour bread.

Cake and cupcakes


50/50 with white flour. The cake is often light, fine-grained, and sweet, and whole wheat does not promote any of these qualities. Whole wheat flour, on the other hand, may be used to make wonderful cakes. Just remember that whole wheat flour should be used in a 50/50 mix.

One potential difficulty is that the larger the proportion of whole wheat flour in your cake, the more crumbly it will be. The rough edges of bran in whole wheat will shred the gluten network that provides the cake structure, weakening and crumbling it. Also, even at low utilization levels, the graininess of whole wheat flour can be detected; it stands out in the cake’s overall smooth texture.

Pancakes, biscuits, and muffins

When substituting whole wheat flour for all-purpose flour in pancakes, muffins, quick bread, scones, biscuits, and other baked products, the best replacement percentage is up to 50%. With this amount of whole wheat flour, there isn’t much of a difference between using white flour and whole wheat flour.

A gritty texture and a darker color may occur from totally substituting whole wheat flour. To produce comparable results with white flour, it is advisable to use a 50% substitute.

Pancakes prepared with 100% whole wheat flour rather than white flour may spread more if cooked right away. To reduce spread, the unique wheat pancake batter should rest for 30 minutes before cooking. This aids the flour’s absorption of the liquid.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why is my whole wheat bread so crumbly?

A: Using too much flour and not enough water might result in crumbs in your bread. It might also be owing to a lack of kneading, which is essential for good construction. When the dough gets too sticky, instead of kneading it, you add additional flour.

Does whole-wheat bread need less yeast?

A Certainly, with wheat bread, less yeast is required. Allowing the bread to rise for a longer period of time is necessary for proper gluten development. If you use the same quantity of yeast as you would for white flour recipes, your bread may have erupted out the top of your bread machine by the time the gluten network has developed.

Does whole-wheat bread need to bake longer?

After 45 minutes, whole wheat bread should be golden and ready; bake it longer if you desire a deeper brown hue. When you touch the bottom of the bread, it should sound hollow. Decrease the baking time by 5-15 minutes if the temperature was originally elevated to prevent burning.


Finally, there are several important considerations to keep in mind when substituting whole wheat flour for white flour or all-purpose flour in baking. These tips may seem basic, but they are critical if you want to get results that are distinct from using all-purpose flour.

Thus, instead of all-purpose flour, consider whole wheat flour for a healthier, more robust, and nutritious flavor in your baked goods. We promise you’ll like the change, possibly much more than you think!


What happens if you replace all-purpose flour with whole wheat?

The drier the dough, the more difficult it is to rise. Substituting whole wheat flour for white flour can considerably reduce the rise of your yeasted baked items. Why? Because whole wheat flour absorbs more moisture than white flour, resulting in a firmer dough. the more rigid

How much white whole wheat flour substitute for all-purpose flour?

When white whole wheat flour is replaced for up to 50% of all-purpose flour, there is no need to alter your favorite white-flour yeast recipe; the outcome should be quite close to the original.

Can whole wheat flour be substituted for white whole wheat flour?

Whole-wheat flour may be replaced for half the quantity of all-purpose flour called for in a recipe or used interchangeably for white whole-wheat flour.

How does whole wheat flour compared to all-purpose flour?

Content of fiber. The fibre level of whole wheat flour differs significantly from simple white flour. Whole wheat flour has the same amount of fibre as wheat. Simple white flour, on the other hand, has had all of the fiber in wheat removed during the white flour manufacturing process.

Does whole wheat flour need more water?

When utilizing whole wheat flour, you must use more water in your dough than when using solely white flour. This is due to the fact that the germ and bran in whole wheat flour can absorb more moisture than the endosperm.

What if there is no all-purpose flour?

You may use white rice flour, brown rice flour, or sweet glutinous rice flour, which is gluten-free despite its name. Brown and white rice flours may be used interchangeably in recipes, although they impart distinct tastes. Use about 2 tablespoons per cup of liquid to be thickened.

Can I use white whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour for cookies?

Drop cookies prepared with all-purpose flour may be produced fully using white whole wheat flour without modifying any other components if baked immediately. Add around 2 tablespoons water (or orange juice) per cup of whole wheat flour if baking later (say, after chilling in the fridge).

How to bake with whole wheat flour?

Since whole wheat flour is denser and heavier than white flour, use only 34 cup whole wheat flour to replace 1 cup white flour. This is ideal for cookies, muffins, cakes, and scones. After baking, the texture will be as light as if you used white flour!

Is white whole wheat flour different than all-purpose flour?

Absolutely not. White whole wheat flour is a real whole grain, but it’s milled from a distinct wheat type that’s lighter in color than conventional whole wheat flour, thus the name. Although white whole wheat flour is not as fluffy as all-purpose flour, it offers several advantages.

Why is whole wheat flour preferred to white flour?

Whole wheat flour has the same amount of fiber as wheat, however white flour has had most of the fiber removed during processing. Fiber is a vital element of your diet since it helps regulate blood sugar, avoids heart disease, and even aids with weight loss management.

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