What Can I Substitute For Cornstarch?
Cornstarch has lots of uses when you are cooking tasty meals. This is because it will assist you to easily thicken up and stabilize your recipes. However, cornstarch as its name suggests is comprised predominantly of starch, which is high in calories and as a carbohydrate, has no real nutritional content. There are some potential cornstarch alternatives for you to choose from if you have dietary requirements on your mind. So, if you are finding yourself asking the question ‘what can I substitute for cornstarch’? then read on to find some of the answers.
Why You May Need a Cornstarch Replacement
Cornstarch is not always considered the best ingredient for people if they are trying to lower or control their cholesterol as it is not known for its health benefits. You may also wish to find a cornstarch substitute if you are thinking about keeping blood sugar levels low as it comes without any real nutritional value.
Cornstarch may perhaps also not be a good idea for people who are trying to lose weight, and when you are looking at ways to lower your long-term risks of obesity. A cornstarch substitute might be required because it is so in high calories and provides nothing else.
There are lots of cornstarch replacements, and virtually all of them will be vegetarian so here are some of the best cornstarch alternatives.
You can simply replace the cornstarch in your bake by upping the amount of flour that you are using. This is the top alternative when making up sauces and flour is a good replacement for any type of stew. Wheat flour is a recommended nutritious substitute to using cornstarch as it contains more protein, more vitamins and minerals, less carbohydrates, and more fiber. But while flour might be more wholesome, wheat flour will not be starchy when used as an alternative to cornstarch. It might be essential to use much more of the flour in order to produce the same effect in your recipes. Not unlike cornstarch, flour will make a liquid recipe lumpy if it is not efficiently mixed in. You can whisk flour first into some warm water before adding it together with other ingredients in your recipe to remove the lumps.
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Potato starch looks like a powder which is created by removing starch from ordinary potatoes and allowing it to dry out. Potato starch, like cornstarch includes few useful nutrients. But potato starch offers a lot less calories and has lower carbohydrate levels than cornstarch does. This means that it a good replacement if you are exploring ways to thicken foods without adding unnecessary calories to your meals. Potato starch is additionally comparatively flavorless which will mean that if you use it as a cornstarch substitute, it is not likely to overpower any of the other flavors in your recipes. Potatoes are inherently gluten-free, so they are a terrific option for people on a specialist diet. It is however a good idea to use your potato starch late in the cooking procedure as high temperature with starches can make them break down, and you will then lose out on any of the thickening attributes that you are looking for.
You can replace cornstarch with an equivalent amount of tapioca. Tapioca is a nice alternative to use when you are making up sauces, but it might not work as well in dairy based recipes. Tapioca is likewise great when used in meals that you are going to cook at a high temperature, like in the oven for instance, or for any recipe that you intend to later freeze. Tapioca will not dissolve entirely when cooked, which means that you will end up with little balls in your completed dish. But you can grind it down first into a powder prior to you using it. A couple of fast pulses in your food processor ought to be enough or you can do it the very traditional way with a mortar and pestle. If you use tapioca in your recipes as an alternative to cornstarch you will end up with a glossy look, more so than if you are using cornstarch which is especially handy when making your own pastry. To achieve the best results, put in tapioca with the other ingredients and allow them time to mix together before you begin cooking. This allows the tapioca time to begin absorbing the other liquids in the recipe so that it thickens correctly.
It is possible to substitute cornstarch with an equal volume of arrowroot. Arrowroot is fantastic in cooked recipes that are made especially to be popped into the freezer. However, it is not always a useful substitute to use in recipes and bakes that use dairy as arrowroot can give a dish a slimy texture. Arrowroot recipes will also need to be cooked a little longer to get a required thickness.
Other Ways to Thicken recipes Without Using Cornstarch
There are a number of other ways to thicken recipes without using cornstarch. Some popular ways to do this include adding:
- Extra dairy products such as yogurt or milk
- Blending up fruits or vegetables to add to your recipe
- Add pulses to soups and stews
- Use coconut milk to thicken up sauces
- Cook foods slower and longer as this normally causes them to naturally thicken up as the ingredients in the recipe will start to break down as the starch fibers break down.
So, there are lots of great replacements for cornstarch. Simple alternatives are flour, tapioca and arrowroot. These are excellent substitutes to cornstarch as they are a lot more healthy and have a lot less calories and carbohydrates. Many are much more powerful thickeners than if you were using cornstarch, but they can be tougher to find and more temperamental to use. Blending fruits and vegetables into liquid dishes, putting in coconut milk to your next sauce, or cooking recipes for longer can additionally help to replace the requirement for needing cornstarch