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Substitutes For Tempura Flour

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Some ingredients may seem difficult to substitute, particularly when working with a new recipe. While most flours may be interchanged, tempura flour presents a different issue. This component is popular in Asian recipes, so figuring out how to substitute it might be difficult. However, it may be changed with other common alternatives that serve as useful equivalents. But, before we get into these alternate components, it’s important to understand what tempura flour accomplishes in the kitchen.

What is Tempura Flour?

Substitutes For Tempura Flour

Tempura flour is the powder needed to make tempura batter. It is widely used in Japanese and Korean cuisines, although its origins may be traced back to the 16th century Portuguese missionaries who arrived in Japan. It’s a product made up of many components designed to make your life simpler while producing tempura batter.

Tempura flour is typically made out of wheat flour, starch, powdered egg, and baking powder. The main reason it comprises all of these components is to make tempura preparation as simple as possible. The presence of dried egg and starch in the mixture indicates that water is added.

When looking through pre-packaged tempura flour varieties, you’ll notice that many of them are gluten-free, which helps produce tempura crispier. Because of this, making tempura becomes simple, but with gluten, the batter might become a sloppy mess.

In other circumstances, tempura flours are combined with additional flavors like as pepper, garlic, and spices to create a unique flavor. Thai tempura flour is often a blend of wheat, rice, tapioca starch, salt, baking powders, and pepper. It may also include MSG as a flavor enhancer.

Tempura Flour Uses

Substitutes For Tempura Flour

Tempura should be eaten when it is hot, therefore make every effort to eat your tempura as hot as possible. When using the dipping sauce, always dip the tempura quickly and prevent soaking it for too long. You may also stir in a tiny quantity of shredded radish, and some people season with only a pinch of salt or lemon.

Tempura-coated items are served as appetizers or as a side dish before to, alongside, or after the main meal. Prawns, squid, shrimp, scallops, and other types of fish are used to make seafood tempura. However, eggplant, lotus root, green pepper, sweet potato, squash, shiitake mushroom, onion, shiso (perilla) leaf, and carrot are used to make vegetable tempura. However, you may also experiment with the veggies and fish at your disposal.

Tentsuyu is a dipping sauce prepared from soy sauce, mirin, and dashi, as well as shredded daikon radish and ginger to whisk into the sauce.

  • Egg-free Tempura Batter
  • Tempura Batter with Mayonnaise
  • Homemade Agedama
  • Chikuwa, Onion and Parsley Kakiage
  • Carrot Leaves Tempura
  • Vegetable and Prawn Tempura
  • Prawn, Onion and Carrot Kakiage
  • Squid Isobe Age Tempura
  • Japanese Assorted Tempura
  • Curry Flavored Brussels Sprout Tempura
  • Much Veggie Tempura
  • Parsnip and Carrot Kakiage
  • Beetroot and Onion Kakiage
  • Tempura Beans
  • Tempura Fried Spinach and Eggplant

Tempura Flour Substitutes

Knowing how unique this element is, you may believe it cannot be substituted, but this is not the case. And here are some fascinating alternatives to tempura flour that you may use in your cuisine.

All-Purpose Flour

Plain, all-purpose flour is a large and popular substitute for tempura flour. To begin with, pre-packaged tempura flour is generally wheat flour. When using plain flour, however, it is critical to utilize cold water in the batter. The cold water aids in the retention of gluten inside the wheat. Furthermore, if the flour is overstirred, the final mixture will be chewy rather than crispy. You may also add an egg to your tempura flour to help it become a glossy golden color. Considering these factors, all-purpose flour is a good alternative for tempura flour.

Rice Flour

Because rice flour is gluten-free, you’ll never have to worry about a chewy tempura flour alternative. Tempura flour made from rice flour is usually crunchy, although not as crispy as tempura flour made from potato starch. However, another significant benefit of rice flour is the overall texture after cooking. Because rice flour does not absorb as much oil as ordinary flour, your tempura flour will not be sticky or oily. As a consequence, the resultant tempura flour is also healthier in general. Rice flour works well as a tempura flour alternative.

Potato Starch and Flour

Regular flour combined with potato starch yields crunchy tempura flour. When combining the flour and potato starch, use a two-to-one ratio of flour to potato starch. The more potato starch you add, the crisper your tempura flour will be. If you don’t have flour but have potato starch, you can still produce tempura flour, but the texture will be excessively crunchy. When cooked, the resultant tempura flour batter may become hard. It is not your finest option, but it will suffice as a final alternative.

Okonomiyaki Flour

This replacement, like pre-packaged tempura flour, includes baking powder. One of the impacts of tempura flour is that the inclusion of baking powder causes the flour to puff up. Furthermore, okonomiyaki flour contains elements other than tempura flour, such as bonito shavings. This gives the tempura batter a shellfish taste that is particularly appealing. Bonito shavings are known for transforming water into dashi stock, a taste seen in certain miso soups. Another aspect of okonomiyaki flour to examine is the inclusion of additives that give a chewy texture. This may be something to avoid while cooking tempura. Tempura should be crispy, not chewy.

Adding Mayonnaise to the Batter

Surprisingly, mayonnaise is a wonderful addition for any fried food item. The fundamental components contribute to a tasty, golden batter with a satisfying crunch. Mayo should be mixed with water when added to tempura batter. You’ll want to use four parts water, two parts flour, and one part mayonnaise. If you’re concerned about the sour taste of mayonnaise, don’t worry. As the item is cooked, the mayo scent and flavor go.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I use avocado oil for tempura?

You certainly can. For tempura, avocado oil works just as well as most other frying oils. The only disadvantage is that it is pretty expensive, but if you have a bottle of it in your kitchen, give it a try.

What kind of oil do you use for frying tempura?

To fry tempura, you may use any vegetable oil, from safflower to maize, canola, peanut, and sesame. The latter lends a fragrant note to the dish. However, it is recommended that olive oil not be used as a frying medium for tempura.

Does tempura batter have milk?

Milk may be added to tempura batter since most batters need it. However, if you are unsure, always verify the ingredient list before using it.


Tempura flour is a mainstay in many Japanese cuisines and is highly regarded across the globe. Using this flour adds a lot of healthiness and a chewy texture, but tempura flour isn’t the only flour or ingredient that has these attributes. Others mentioned above may get your food extremely near to tempura flour. So, the next time you need tempura flour, try one of our alternatives and enjoy your meal.


What can be substituted for tempura flour?

Cake flour contains less protein and hence less gluten than all-purpose flour, making it a superior choice for tempura—though both will work. Rice flour is a gluten-free substitute for wheat flour that produces a crispy coating.

What is inside tempura flour?

What are the ingredients in tempura flour?
Flour made from wheat.
Egg powder.
Baking soda.

What is the difference between tempura flour and all-purpose flour?

Tempura flour contains baking powder as well as other ingredients. It contains whole egg powder for flavor and consistency. It contains starch, which reduces the quantity of gluten and makes the tempura crisper.

Can I use tempura flour instead of cornstarch?

Cornstarch replacements for pan and deep frying include:

If you don’t have cornstarch on hand, you may use all-purpose flour instead for a more standard breading and frying technique. You may also use rice flour or potato flour, which are traditional tempura ingredients, to get a similar lacy, crispy texture.

Is tempura flour the same as panko?

Tempura is not the same as Panko Japanese breadcrumbs or other breading batters. Tempura is recognized for its lighter texture and unique preparation. It’s made using extremely cold water and shouldn’t be overworked.

Can you use panko instead of tempura?

Tempura is often served in American restaurants in the shape of different sorts of meat, typically chicken, and cheeses, generally mozzarella. A alternative is to use panko (breadcrumbs), which produces a crisper consistency than tempura batter, albeit this would be regarded as a furai dish in Japan.

Is tempura just flour?

The three main components in tempura batter are flour, egg, and cold water. The primary distinction between tempura batter and regular batter is that tempura batter has substantially less oil and no breadcrumbs. Tempura batter produces a delicate, crunchy finish that is lighter than regular batter.

What is the formula for tempura batter?

Ingredients for tempura:

100g plain flour (1 cup) * Egg: 1. Cold water: 200cc (1Cup) * Baking Soda: 1 tea spoon.

Why is my tempura batter not crispy?

The tempura will not be crispy if gluten develops. Adding potato starch or cornstarch to ordinary flour makes gluten formation more difficult, resulting in crispy and tasty tempura! In truth, most store-bought “tempura flours” include potato or corn starch.

Can I use all-purpose flour for batter?

Typical batter:

1 cup all-purpose flour 140 grams. 2 Tbsp rice flour 12 grams. 1 Tbsp baking powder.

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