I just recently discovered the magic of coconut flour for baking, and I’m pretty excited about it! There are so many great health benefits and advantages to baking with coconut flour that it’s almost too good to be true. Here are 6:
1. Gluten free (and doesn’t ruin your baking)
Some gluten-free flours either (a) ruin the consistency of your baked goods or (b) taste bad. Coconut flour, made from coconut solids ground into a very fine powder, is light and airy and has a mild coconut scent/flavour, which makes it perfect for baking and is especially delicious in muffins and pancakes. Since it’s made from coconut, it is also entirely grain-free.
2. Low in Carbs
Firstly, because coconut flour absorbs more liquid than traditional flours, you need to use much less of it in your recipes. So DO NOT just substitute regular flour with coconut flour in your recipes! A 1/4 cup (or 4 Tbsp) of coconut flour contains only 16g of carbohydrates (of which only 6g is digestible and the other 10g is fibre). This brings me to #3:
3. High in Fibre
Unlike traditional grain flours, coconut flour is rich in dietary fibre. We should aim to eat about 25g of fibre per day – a 1/4 cup of coconut flour will provide 10-12g, while 1/4 cup of white flour has only 0.8g. Among other health benefits, fibre is important for maintaining good bowel health and reduces blood pressure and inflammation in the body.
4. Doesn’t Spike Blood Sugar
Due to the high fibre content in coconut flour, it has a gentle impact on blood sugar levels. It lowers the glycemic index, meaning it’s suitable for diabetics and anyone else who wants to avoid spiking blood sugar levels.
5. High in Protein
Protein is required for good cell repair and growth in the body, which is why athletes/bodybuilders are somewhat obsessed with it. Coconut flour, especially when compared to wheat flours, is high in protein – it has 6g per 1/4 cup.
6. Contains Medium-Chain Triglycerides (MCT)
Coconut flour contains healthy saturated fats called medium-chain triglycerides (MCT). MCT are digested easily and provide readily available energy, meaning they are not stored as easily as fat in the body. MCT may even help boost your metabolism, helping you to lose weight. Sometimes I add coconut oil (MCT) to my smoothies – tastes great and gives me long-lasting energy.
So many great reasons to bake muffins. These super delicious little muffins are so good I made them twice in the last week – once with apple and cinnamon (as in the recipe below) and the other time with frozen blueberries and chopped almonds on top. Both turned out tasting great! Such a lovely weekend treat. Try serving with natural yogurt for breakfast or with tea in the afternoon. Hope you enjoy!
Coconut Flour Apple Cinnamon Muffins
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp cinnamon
4 free-range eggs
1/2 cup (or slightly less) maple syrup
1/4 cup coconut oil (warmed gently until liquid)
1 small-medium organic apple, diced
Preheat oven to 375F. Lightly grease muffin tin (or use silicon muffin liners). Mix dry ingredients together in a medium bowl. In a separate bowl, beat eggs together with maple syrup and coconut oil. Add the wet ingredients to the dry, stirring until smooth and well-combined (don’t worry about over-mixing). Finally, fold in apple and spoon into muffin tin. Bake for 20 mins. Remove and cool for a few minutes before eating. Makes a dozen.