I used to LOVE those just add water packages of mashed potatoes. I would add milk instead and feel oh so gourmet. I know that Idahoan brand is still gluten free (as of the writing of this post) but the list of ingredients is staggering and no longer as appealing to me. I am still struggling with finding out what other foods I may have intolerances too. With no insurance that is not an easy task. I have narrowed it down to corn and possibly rice that are the offending stomach ache inducers. My favorite stand by Idahoan potatoes contain corn so I went on a quest to find a good substitute.
I have fallen in love with coconut flour and try to incorporate it into just about everything I make. In an effort to use up the foods that I can no longer eat I made Alan a packet of Idahoan. They smelled incredible. I tried to think of a good substitute for my raging craving and realized I was out of anything even resembling a potato. I knew coconut flour would have a similar consistency from using it in my brownie breakfast cereal. A few big questions remained. Would my Nutiva Organic Coconut Flour be adaptable to a mashed potato flavor? Would coconut flour really make a fitting substitute or just become a gross mess? I think you know the answer since it would be silly for me to write a detailed post about a disaster.
Ok I’ll indulge you… My first attempt at creating coconut flour mashed potatoes smelled terrific. I popped those babies out of the microwave and quickly turned to set the overly hot dish on the counter. Little did I know that at that exact moment my kitchen rug and my little feet would decide to go to war. I tripped on the rug and sent hot potatoes flying all over the floor, my leg, the washing machine, the dryer, the walls, and the refrigerator. I even found some lingering inside a cabinet later that evening. The tiny speck left in the bottom of the bowl was amazing! I promptly cleaned up the mess and tried again. Within minutes I was eating the best mashed potato substitute I could ever dream of.
In September of last year I put together a coconut flour guide highlighting 7 different brands of coconut flour. I tested each brand using my Best Coconut Flour Chocolate Mug Cake Ever. Since then I have had many people email me asking if I had tried their favorite brand. Once I got enough responses like that I knew I just had to do another coconut flour roundup.
I love testing new products and sharing my results with you all. I have been making my Low Calorie Banana Muffins for breakfast most mornings, so I decided that I would test out the new brands using that recipe. These days I only make the chocolate one on occasion for dessert as it is incredibly rich and decadent.
I originally planned to test these flours using my 108 calorie banana mug muffins, but my diet has changed and I have adapted the recipe to fit my new dietary needs. Over the past few months I have had to cut out all added sugar and sugar substitutes. Sugar has been making my heart race and then making me incredibly sleepy until 20 minutes after consumption I’m out like a light. I believe it may be reactive hypoglycemia. If any of you have experienced this I’d love to here from you in the comments. I’m still looking for answers and gave up on doctors a long time ago.
As most of you know I have had to cut out corn products and derivatives as well. I am still learning how corn affects me and what products I can and cannot tolerate. So I eliminated my favorite stevia due to it containing dextrose and eliminated vanilla extract due to possible corn as well. If anyone has a good corn free stevia recommendation I’d love to hear it.
So, I will be making these simplified added sugar free Banana Bread Mug Muffins for this test.
Here are the brands you all asked me to compare in no particular order. Coconut World, My Elixir of Life, Nuts.com, Honeyville, Shiloh Farms, Earth Circle Organics, Yankee Trader, and Mercola. I emailed all of the companies but only got responses from the first three. I didn’t want to wait to get this information out to you guys. Here are the three companies that responded. If I get responses from the other companies I will update the post with their information and a test of their flour as well. If you have a coconut flour you would like me to test, or are interested in a comparison of any other gluten free food or product please please let me know. I love doing these tests for you guys and sharing my results!
I began with a control group muffin using my go to coconut flour Nutiva. You can see my results of my last coconut flour comparison here.
I made two cute mug muffins using the Simple Banana Bread Mug Cake recipe I eat for breakfast every day. It is quick, healthy, added sugar free, and uses few ingredients. For the rest of the testing I decided to make the mug cakes as I do every morning; in a cereal bowl. They may not be as pretty, but they take less time and effort than dirtying two mugs or microwaving two separate cakes.
All of the flours in this test came in close and tasted great. Here’s how they stacked up.
Overall out of this test I believe Coconut World Organic Coconut flour to be the best. It has a sweeter flavor than the other brands which I consider a plus for mug cakes and added sugar free baking in general. Alan is not a big coconut flour fan. He says it is gritty. He tolerated this brand well and said it was the least gritty of the flours in this test. I found Coconut World to have the best texture, rise, and flavor. The recipe worked with no modifications to ingredients or time.
NUTS.COM Organic Coconut Flour
2 tbsp = 14 Grams (0.5 oz)
Fat: 1.5 Grams
Carbs: 10 Grams
Protein: 2 Grams
Fiber: 6 Grams
Nuts.com fared well in my testing. In fact all of the other brands came in so close that I will be listing them in no particular ranked order.
Nuts.com was the second sweetest out of the flours I tested. It was slightly gritter than the Coconut World flour but not in a way that would negatively affect baking. The nuts. com coconut flour did not need any adjustments in ingredients although I must note that it did take an additional 30 seconds in the microwave. it was not set at the three minute mark. This flour makes a denser yet still amazingly tasty bread than Coconut World or My Elixir of Life. I can see it working well in brownies or other baked goods that need a denser less fluffy result.
My Elixir Of Life Gluten Free Organic Coconut Flour
My Elixir of Life Coconut Flour was less sweet that the other brands. It would lend itself fantastically to Coconut Flour Buttermilk Biscuits or other savory coconut flour baked goods where sweetness is not as desirable. This flour produced an edible muffin with good flavor. My Elixir Of Life flour produced a muffin that was lighter in color and did not rise as much as the other flours in this test. Alan thought out of the flours tested that this one was the grittiest. I enjoy the texture of coconut flour. While this may have been slightly grittier I still quite liked it.
I love Pb2 and found it on sale at our local Big Lots of all places. I had never tried the chocolate flavor and found this to be the perfect opportunity to to grab a jar. I usually mix Pb2 and coconut oil to use as a dip for bananas. If you haven’t tried it it is divine.
I know the combination of chocolate, peanut butter and bananas is a popular one so I tried my fave snack with the chocolate PB2. I found the chocolate PB2 to be less peanut buter flavored and not as chocolatey as I thought it would be.
I knew I needed to use it up as I hate to waste ingredients. I started out attempting brownies, but ended up with an amazing protein packed chocolate peanut butter cake. I have tried protein cakes before and not cared for them as they were gritty, chalky, dry or wierdly flavored. This has all of the protein of a whole jar of PB2 and all of the flavor of rich chocolate peanut butter. The chocolate flavor really blossoms when more PB2 is used.
This recipe only has 1/4 cup of sugar in the whole thing. I still found it to be quite sweet for me and am sure the sugar amount could be decreased to 2 tablespoons if you like very lightly sweet desserts. Continue reading →
I wanted ranch flavored chicken. I wanted it so bad I could taste it in my head. I have expiramented with making my own ranch powder mixes before. I have used numerous recipes that claimed to taste like Hidden Valley packets but none even came close. I have tried my own spice combinations and still that amazing ranch flavor eludes me. I am beginning to think that the chemicals and ingredients with long names are what makes it taste so good.
On my latest quest for ranch flavored powder I came up with these yummy chicken tenders. I call them buttermilk dill because they too were just not ranch flavored. They were however amazingly good. I love Saco buttermilk powder. I use it in my coconut flour buttermilk biscuit for one. Now I have a new go to chicken recipe and a new use for my buttermilk powder. Alan says he wants this chicken as often as I am willing to make it. Try it and then tell me about your homemade ranch successes and/or failures in the comments section below.
Alan’s mom buys pre-made monkey bread on a regular basis. Being the sweetheart that he is he never eats it. Not that he isn’t tempted to, he just values my kisses more than gluten filled treats. I have attempted to make gluten free monkey bread before, and it was Delicious. It just wasn’t blog worthy monkey bread. That version used all tapioca flour and was too chewey. So I had put monkey bread making into the back of my brain and moved on.
A few days ago I found Hodgson Mills Gluten Free Xanthan Gum in individual packets at Walmart. I had never attempted Xanthan Gum based breads because I found it too costly. I don’t have a large refrigerator in my RV either. I was just afraid to buy that large thirteen dollar bag of gum and possibly have it go bad before I used much of it. That is why I was so excited to find it in yeast sized packets for 48 cents a piece. That 48 cent packet opened my eyes to a new world of bread making. I still wasn’t quite ready to dive into making sandwich loaves quite yet. So I picked up my favorite new gluten free flour blend by Gluten Free Cafe. I can also find this at my Walmart for 4.88 for 2 pounds. Also incredibly reasonable!
I figured it was time to revisit the sticky sweet caramely goodness that is monkey bread. The recipe may seem complicated but it comes together quickly and is really fun to make. This recipe is much easier and gives tastier results that any gluten free cinnamon roll recipe I have tried too. The butter can be subbed out for coconut oil and the milk for non dairy milk to make this a dairy free treat if needed. I have not tried an egg substitute, but if you do please let me know how it turned out by leaving a comment. You may also omit the buttermilk powder if you do not have it. I don’t think that will make or break the recipe.
This monkey bread came out perfect! We ended up eating half of the loaf in under four minutes. I had to force myself to stop eating it so we can have some with coffee in the morning. This treat is not low fat or low calorie, but it is ok to indulge on occasion. Especially when it tastes this darn good.
1 stick of melted butter OR 8 tbsp melted coconut oil
1 cup brown sugar
½ cup sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
slivered almonds for sprinkling (can be omitted)
Start by adding the one teaspoon sugar and the yeast to the warm milk. Let those sit while you prepare the rest of the dough.
Beat the eggs, 2 tablespoons of sugar, 2 tablespoons of coconut oil, and vanilla for about 1 to 2 minutes.
Mix in buttermilk powder, xanthan gum, salt, flour, cinnamon, and yeast mixture. Mix until dough comes together.
In a separate bowl combine the brown sugar, sugar, and cinnamon for the topping mix.
Leave the melted butter or oil in second separate bowl for dipping the dough balls into.
Spray your loaf pan with your favorite spray grease.
Dip a tablespoon into the melted butter or oil. Use that tablespoon to scoop a tablespoon of dough. Drop the tablespoon of dough into the butter . Roll the ball in the cinnamon sugar mixture. Drop the ball in the pan. Repeat until the bottom of pan is full. Sprinkle a layer of slivered almonds across the dough balls if you like nuts.
Continue making, dipping, rolling, and dropping balls in pan until you run out of dough.
Add another layer of nuts if you would like.
Mix remaining butter and sugar together and drop/crumble over balls in pan.
Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let rise for 45 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Bake uncovered for 30 to 40 minutes or until toothpick can be stuck in the center and comes out clean.
let cool for 5 to 10 minutes and then invert the pan onto a plate. Scrape any remaining caramel from the pan and drizzle over you monkey bread.