Corn Flour Substitute – 14 Excellent Alternatives

Published Categorized as Guide, Ingredients

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Corn flour is almost an essential ingredient for most dishes since it’s exceptional when incorporated in baking, thickening soups and stews, and more. You’ll find this versatile item in many kitchens, appearing in many of your favourite meals. Because of its frequent use, many tend to unknowingly run out of this flour, so if you’re looking for some easy corn flour substitute, I got you!

Table of Contents

What is Corn Flour?

Corn flour is a fine-ground flour made from dried whole corn kernels. Unlike other flours, it is considered an entire grain because it uses the entire kernel, including the hull, germ, and endosperm. This includes all of its nutrients such as fibre, protein, starch, and vitamins, as well as minerals like calcium. Depending on which type of corn was used for milling (yellow, white, or blue), it may appear yellowish or slightly blue in colour when ground into a powdery consistency suitable for baking.

Corn flour is gluten-free and therefore perfect for people who avoid wheat products but still want something light in texture like cake or muffin recipes, which would normally call for wheat flours such as all-purpose flour or bread flour.

Corn Flour Substitute

What Does Corn Flour Taste Like?

Corn flour is a great substitute for wheat flour in baking, as it has a slightly sweet flavour that’s similar to whole corn, rather than being flavourless like cornstarch. However, if you’re looking for an alternative with a similar taste and texture to the cornflour, then arrowroot flour may be your best bet. It’s made from the root of the arrowroot plant and has an almost identical consistency and taste to cornflour but without any of the allergy-inducing properties of wheat or gluten (which some people are intolerant to).

When to Use Corn Flour?

Corn flour can be used as an alternative to corn starch or wheat flour, which is typically reserved for baking. Along with its incredible versatility, it can be used in many ways and can replace wheat flour in up to 50% of the total weight of the recipe. Since corn flour is an excellent binding material for baking, it also helps create a smooth texture in baked goods and can aid in shaping bread, waffles, muffins, pancakes, and other baked goods.

Corn flour is a flexible ingredient that may appear in a variety of recipes. It works well as a thickening agent for sauces, soups, and stews, or it can be used as a seasoning for fried fish dishes and meats. Corn flour also happens to aid in shaping your food when making bread or rolls. It is recognised as a flexible ingredient that may appear in various recipes depending on what you are cooking or baking at any given time.

Corn Flour Substitutes

Corn flour is a great ingredient when it comes to baking and cooking. However, many of us finish off our popular ingredients – in this case, corn flour – forgetting to replace it with a new batch in time for when we need it! When this happens, don’t panic, as there are many alternatives that you can use. With ingredients that provide similar properties and results to corn flour. Let’s have a look at some excellent corn flour substitutes that may help you achieve the desired texture and flavour:

  • Corn Starch
  • Brown Rice Flour
  • White Rice Flour
  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Wheat Flour
  • Potato Flour
  • Arrowroot Powder
  • Cornmeal
  • Tapioca Flour
  • Masa Harina
  • Sorghum Flour
  • Self-Raising Flour
  • Ground Flaxseed
  • Semolina Flour

Corn Starch

Corn starch is a fine white powder, almost entirely different from corn flour which is canary yellow in colour, denser, and a little grainy in texture. Both ingredients are gluten-free corn and are used as thickeners or sauces. It’s important to note that while they appear similar, there are some differences between them:

  • The size of the granules can affect how well it thickens your dish: Cornstarch has smaller particles than cornflour, so it will work quickly to thicken your recipe without altering its flavour as much; however, this can also result in clumping if you’re not careful! To prevent clumping add an extra 1 tbsp of water per tbsp of starch when cooking with it (and don’t forget to sift!).
  • If you’re trying to achieve a smooth consistency, try using cornstarch, as it doesn’t give off any grittiness as flour does. Just remember that this may affect how thick or thin your sauce becomes – for example, if you’re replacing 1 cup of flour with 1 cup of cornstarch, then expect more liquid than usual since there won’t be enough dry matter left over after cooking, so remember to adjust accordingly.

Brown Rice Flour

Brown rice flour is a common ingredient in Asian cooking and appears in everything from soups to noodles to sweets. Like corn flour, it is gluten-free and great for people who want to steer clear of high-gluten meals while still enjoying the taste of their favourite dishes. Brown rice flour packs a rich, slightly nutty taste, and it happens to work excellently as a thickening agent, though it lacks the crispness of a maize flour covering when being used as a seasoning.

Substitute 1 tablespoon of cornflour with 2 tablespoons of rice flour combined with either cold or hot water in any recipe; this will provide you with an accurate representation of whatever dish you are trying to recreate without sacrificing flavour or texture.

White Rice Flour

White rice flour is made from milled white rice. It has a mild taste, and it’s often used as an alternative to cornflour in Asian cuisines. It also makes an excellent substitute for wheat flour in baked goods because it’s gluten-free and absorbs liquids easily.

Rice flour can be diluted with either hot or cold water. The mixture should be stirred until the consistency reaches that of runny mashed potatoes; if you find that the mix has become too thick, just add more water or broth until it reaches this consistency level. Rice flour is colourless when mixed with water, unlike corn flour which will turn yellow when mixed with liquid; if your dish needs colour as well as thickening power, then consider adding one teaspoon of turmeric powder per cup (250 ml) of broth or water before adding any other ingredients such as herbs or spices.

Rice Flour doesn’t form clumps, which would normally happen if you tried using only corn flour, so don’t worry, you won’t be getting any lumpy bits floating inside your stew! When using rice flour instead of cornstarch, remember that 1 tablespoon of corn starch equals 2 tablespoons of rice flour.

All-Purpose Flour

All-purpose flour is refined flour milled from hard wheat and then sifted to remove the bran and germ. Its low protein content makes it suitable for baking but less effective at thickening liquids than cornflour. When using all-purpose flour with other ingredients in your recipes, you may need to adjust the quantities accordingly since it absorbs more liquid than cornflour. You will also find that a batter or dough made with all-purpose flour will be slightly heavier than one made with maize meal (cornmeal) or cornstarch.

Wheat Flour

Wheat flour is made by grinding wheat grains into a powder. It is a wonderful replacement for corn flour because it is high in fiber and protein combined with carbohydrates, which makes it a great source of energy. If you’re seeking a gluten-free alternative, just like corn flour, you might reconsider using wheat flour because it includes gluten. To eliminate lumps when you thicken sauces and soups, use two teaspoons of wheat flour combined with water to produce a paste instead of 1 tbsp cornflour. Wheat flour is an excellent corn flour replacement for thickening meals, cooking, and baking

Corn Flour Substitute

Potato Flour

Potato flour, also referred to as potato starch or potato powder, is a gluten-free thickening agent that can be used in place of corn flour. It’s made from boiling and then drying potatoes into powdery starch, which is frequently used in cooking and baking. Potato starch (like corn flour) is suitable for people with celiac disease because it does not contain gluten.

Potato starch, like corn flour, absorbs water slowly, so you must take it cautiously when cooking sauces and soups using these thickeners. The gravy or soup may become overly thick if added too early in your cooking process. It’s recommended that you add potato starch towards the end of preparation so that any excess will evaporate before the serving time arrives. Also, remember that high temperatures might cause this ingredient to thin out whatever you intend to thicken

Arrowroot Powder

Arrowroot powder is a kind of tapioca starch that may be used as a substitute for cornflour. It originates from the tropical arrowroot plant, which grows best in moist, warm climates. In order to extract the starch from its tubers (a tuber is a modified root), they must first be peeled, cleaned, and washed before being exposed to heat by roasting or steaming.

After these processes have been completed, what remains is dried again until it becomes an off-white powder with an odourless taste once reconstituted into liquid form; this process takes place under controlled temperatures so as not to alter their nutritional value or flavour profile after being processed this way.

While similar in many ways to corn flour, arrowroot powder has a more mild flavour, than most types of flours available due to its low protein content. This makes it ideal for those who are gluten intolerant.


Although corn flour and cornmeal are from dried, milled corn, and you can use them interchangeably in most situations, their textures are vastly different. Corn flour has a delicate, silky texture, whereas cornmeal has a gritty texture that is much coarser than that of the fine-textured flour. Because of this difference in texture, using them interchangeably may result in a grittier consistency if you create muffins or pancakes with cornmeal rather than corn flour.

To erase this distinction between the two products, look out for finely milled cornmeal instead of cornflour for thinning out your sauces or thickening soups to get rid of that chalky taste. Honestly, no one wants their food to taste like chalk, so you can always opt to use finely ground corn meal instead of regular flours and meals.

Corn Flour Substitute

Tapioca Flour

Tapioca flour is a light, white starch that can be used interchangeably with corn flour in many recipes. It’s derived from the cassava root and has a neutral flavour, making it an ideal substitute for recipes that require thickening agents. Tapioca flour is often used as an ingredient in stews, soups, and sauces; however, it also lends itself well to sweet applications such as pies or cakes.

For use in baking applications where there are other options like brown rice flour or coconut flour available (which will generally provide more fiber than tapioca), we recommend using those instead of tapioca flour due to their higher nutrient content. As a general rule, when substituting liquids for starches: 1 tablespoon of corn starch is equivalent to 1 tablespoon of tapioca starch, which is also equivalent to 2 tablespoons of arrowroot powder.

Masa Harina

Masa harina is a popular product you can find in any Hispanic grocery store and quite a few mainstream ones these days. It is basically flour made from corn that has been soaked in lime water before grinding. In fact, masa harina literally translates to “dough flour” because it is used to make tortillas, tamales, and biscuits. It can also lend a crunchy texture to fried foods and baked goods.

The best thing about using this product is its versatility; it has virtually no flavour on its own but still adds some nutrients like calcium since it comes from whole grains (in addition to being gluten-free). You can use this substitute for cornflour mixed with some other type of flour in baked goods and as a thickener for sauces, soups, stews, or casseroles (or even your favourite meatloaves!). Just mix it with water to make a slurry and add it to the dish you’re preparing, so it doesn’t become lumpy when cooked.

Sorghum Flour

Sorghum flour is a gluten-free flour that has a sweet, mild flavor and is usually combined with other flours in bread, cakes, cookies, and other baked goods. It can also be used as an alternative to corn flour in your baked goods and thickening agents for sauces, stews, or soups. If you are using sorghum flour in your baked goods, combine it with another gluten-free flour and add a binder such as a xanthan gum for better texture.

Self-Raising Flour

Self-raising flour is an all-purpose flour with baking powder, salt, and a little sugar added. The addition of these three ingredients allows for your baked goods to rise faster than normal when combined with liquid ingredients, making them great for quick pieces of bread and biscuits. Self-raising flour can also be used as a thickening agent in sauces or soups. It’s also great for coating fried foods before frying them because it helps the pieces stay together during cooking without breaking apart.

Ground Flaxseed

Ground flaxseed is one of the ingredients that can be used as a substitute for corn flour. These small brown or yellow in colour seeds have a nutty flavour and can be used as a thickener in your dishes. You can add ground flaxseeds in stews, soups, sauces, puddings, and other sweet and savoury recipes. Mix 4 tablespoons of water with 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseeds and use it as a substitute for 2 tablespoons of cornflour. These can improve digestive health, help lower blood cholesterol and cumulatively help reduce the risk of heart disease. High oil content means you may need to reduce your butter or oil combination in the mix.

Semolina Flour

Semolina flour is made from durum wheat, a hardy crop that can withstand drought and heat. Semolina flour is typically used to make fresh pasta or pizza crust, but it can also be substituted for corn flour in baking applications such as muffins and scones. The higher protein content of semolina compared to the other alternatives makes it an excellent choice for baked goods where you want more structure or chewiness (like bread). Semolina isn’t gluten-free, so those who avoid wheat need to use caution when substituting this for their normal corn flour base.

How to Make Homemade Corn Flour?

Making homemade corn flour may seem complicated, but it’s simpler than you can imagine. The drying duration is typically a rather lengthy process involving the sun’s rays drying the corn, then taking it from the cob and grinding it into a powder used in cooking or baking.

Fortunately, you do not have to go through this time-consuming procedure because it is much easier to accomplish. All you’ll need is a powerful blender, which is ideal for creating dough and flours as well as popcorn kernels. Pour the kernels into your blender until it is halfway complete, and grind the grains on high until they become a fine powder. To prevent moisture from getting to your fine powder, store the powder in a sealed jar or a Zip-lock bag, then place it in the fridge for extended use. You may also freeze the corn flour for up to six months if you intend to take a break from baking.

Corn Flour

Corn flour is a great substitution for those trying to avoid gluten or who want to incorporate more whole grains into their diets. It’s also great if you’re looking for a different texture while baking since it can make baked goods denser and chewier than regular flour might be able to achieve on its own!