Try-It Tuesday: Brown Rice Flour

August 25, 2009 at 8:31 am | Posted in Homemaking, Natural Living, Parenting, Recipes, Try-It Tuesday, Uncategorized | 4 Comments
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brown rice flourMy son Judah is 8 months old and has a wheat allergy. This hasn’t been confirmed by an allergist, but I kept track of the foods I’d introduced and noticed a pattern of rash forming after eating foods containing wheat flour. Since removing all wheat products from his diet, he’s been rash free.

Judah is at the age where he notices everything his big sisters are eating and desperately wants to eat it too. Pasta, bread, pancakes…we are definitely a family that enjoys it’s carbs. My intention is to gradually remove wheat from all of our diets and replace it with an alternative grain. 

Brown rice flour is the first alternative I will be trying. I chose it rather blindly when I happened to run into the health foods market, but I figured that I love brown rice and so does Judah, so it can’t be that bad, right? I purchased a package of Bob’s Red Mill Organic Brown Rice Flour ($5.48 for a 24 oz. package. It’s cheaper online!)

When we got home I went online and started doing some research on how to use it as a wheat flour substitute. Here are some things that I discovered:


  • Brown Rice Flour is milled from unpolished brown rice and has a higher nutrient value than white rice flour
  • this flour contains bran and has a shorter shelf life than other flours; it should be refrigerated
  • it is best to combine brown rice flour with several other flours to avoid a grainy texture
  • excellent source of protein, fiber, and minerals such as magnesium and selenium


  • replace up to 1/4 of any wheat flour with brown rice flour
  • baked goods made with rice flour tend to be crumbly, so consider substituting a mixture of one part arrowroot or other thickener plus four parts rice flour
  • adding more eggs is another way to reduce crumbliness
  • since rice flour absorbs more moisture, you may need to add more liquid to recipe
  • FOR YEAST BREADS: replace up to 1/5 of the wheat flour in a bread recipe, and try increasing the yeast so that the bread rises more

Try-It Recipe: Brown Rice Pancakes


  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 tbsp honey, fruit juice concentrate or sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda


1. Beat egg until frothy.

2. Add buttermilk, oil, and honey and beat until well blended.

3. In another bowl mix brown rice flour and the remaining dry ingredients.

4. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the liquids. Stir until well blended. Do not over stir. Batter will be stightly lumpy.

5. Lightly grease a frying pan and fry pancakes.

cooking pancakesFrying on the griddle

cooked pancakeBrowns nicely!

judah eatingJudah loved them!

Momma’s Verdict:

The pancakes turned out very nicely. They were quite crumbly, so I will be sure to add additional liquid next time–I’m thinking plain yogurt would be a good thing to add. I also may try to add a thickener such as cornstarch or arrowroot. My two girls didn’t notice the difference between these and their regular pancakes…and that’s saying something! I froze the leftovers so I am curious to see how they will thaw and reheat for another quick breakfast.





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  1. My mama has a severe wheat/gluten allergy. I’ve got some awesome tricks up my sleeve.

    Bob’s Red Mill Wheat Free Pancake Flour: Best wheatless pancakes period, but I bet the brown rice flour has more nutrients. We made up our own easy recipe, let me know if you want it.

    Okay…supper yummy chicken nuggets. Pan fry. Rather than rolling chicken breasts in wheat free flour use corn tostito chips. Throw a bag of chips in the food processor for perfect bread crumb like texture. I promise you’re kids will LOVE IT! Delicious…

    Okay that’s all I got for now. Enjoy…

    • Thanks for the chicken tip! That sounds so yummy. And I would love any wheatless baking recipes you may have! I’m new to the gluten-free world and I’m SUCH a wheat lover. It’s really bad, actually. But I’m hoping that if I can find good recipes I’ll be able to say goodbye to wheat forever. *tear*

  2. Very yummy! Let me know if you try it! You are on the right track. It’s really a process of trial and error. Substitution work but sacrifice is inevitable. Good luck!

  3. You might try many of the gluten-free mixes that are out there, using several of the many GF flours that are now available. Or you could mix your own, using a mix of sorghum, tapioca, buckwheat, quinoa, amaranth, garbanzo, potato starch, teff, corn starch, etc., which would probably give you overall a better texture than just white or brown rice or sweet rice (“glutinous”, but gluten-free) flour. Try searching for a LOT of recipes in this vein. GF recipes often add xanthan gum, guar gum, gelatin, agar agar, methylcellulose, extra eff white, or Expandex tapioca starch or sweet rice flour to give a more spongy consistency to the final product.

    Another option is to add some applesauce to the pancakes, possibly instead of the honey, as the pectin in apples also helps hold the moisture in GF baked goods.

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