If you think you’ll have to miss out on cookies and cakes because you’re on a keto diet, think again. Baking on the keto diet is a great way to explore different flavors and enjoy sweet treats while staying on a low carb diet and losing weight.
Events and holiday seasons are the prime suspects for gaining weight so thinking ahead means that you can enjoy sweet keto treats without the side effects.
Here’s our new comprehensive guide for baking on a keto diet. You’ll find all the best low carb baking ingredients, keto baking substitutes and insider tips that will make all the difference.
Ingredients for Low Carb and Keto Baking
The main ingredients that are used in traditional baking are packed with unhealthy carbohydrates. Because of this, we use low carb substitutes when we bake on a keto diet.
The most common low carb substitutes are made for flour and sugar because they are vital for baking. However, instead of using traditional wheat flours, we use low carb flour substitutes.
Fortunately, it’s possible to grind almost any nut to obtain a flour-like consistency. This gives us a lot of options to reduce the carb content in keto recipes.
Walnut meal, for example, can be used in many recipes that call for almond flour. Other nut flours that you can experiment with are hazelnut meal, pecan meal, macadamia nut meal, and pistachio meal. They all have different flavors so choose wisely.
This is perfect for baking on keto because it only consists of ground almonds. It is a gluten free alternative to regular flour and it’s very easy to make at home. All you have to do is toast the almonds and then grind them up.
Alternately, you can purchase almond flour to save time.
IMPORTANT: When using almond flour to bake, be careful not to overdo it. While it is an excellent option for baking, 1 cup of almond flour consists of roughly 90 almonds. Almonds are healthy but too much of them can cause inflammation, which is bad if you have any pre-existing health conditions.
Tips on How To Bake With Almond Flour
- Use less oil and liquid to account for the high-fat content of almond flour
- Add an extra egg to provide more structure for keto bread and muffins
- Using extra raising agent like baking powder or baking soda can be helpful
- Bake at 25° lower for a longer time
- If the product using almond flour begins to brown too quickly, cover it with aluminium foil
- Allow the baked good to sit and cool completely. This allows the products to develop a better flavor and texture
- There is no suggested measurement ratio for almond flour because every brand is different
Almond flour can become rancid quite quickly so it’s best to store it in the fridge after opening it. Ensure that it is stored in an airtight container.
Recommended Almond Flour Products
Coconut flour is probably the healthiest low-carb flour alternative. It is made from drying and grinding coconut meat into a fine powder.
A quarter cup of coconut flour contains 60 calories, 6g of protein, 19g of carbohydrates, 12g of fiber, 2.5g of fat and 7g of net carbs.
It has a delicious coconut flavor and has a lot of fiber. This gives you an advantage when making dough because the fiber binds the liquid together in the dough.
Please note that coconut flour soaks up liquid and moisture like a sponge. (Tips on how to deal with that are below)
Like almond flour, coconut flour is gluten free. The drawback with this is that the dough won’t rise when yeast is added. It also cannot be a direct substitute for regular wheat flour.
Tips on How to Bake With Coconut Flour
- For 1 cup of coconut flour, use 6 eggs and 1 cup of liquid
- You don’t need to adjust the temperature setting
- For 1 cup of regular flour, you can substitute 1/4 – 1/3 cup of coconut flour
- You can allow the batter to thicken to get a sturdier and less crumbly baked good
- The taste of coconut flour can easily be masked with other strong flavors like vanilla and chocolate
You can store coconut flour in an airtight container, preferably in a cool, dark spot in your pantry.
Recommended Coconut Flour
Ground Psyllium Husk Powder
If you want a crumb-like texture when baking on a keto diet, then ground psyllium husk powder is your best bet. It is also very high in fiber and it turns into a gel-like substance when liquid is added.
This product works like gluten in traditional baking and it makes it better for you to manipulate dough. It gives keto breads and cakes a crumb-like texture that makes it hard to differentiate from regular wheat bread.
If you have a sensitive digestive system, be careful when using this because it is also sold as a laxative.
When storing it, keep it in the original container (securely sealed) in a cool and dry place.
Recommended Psyllium Husk Product
Possible Almond Flour Substitution Recipes
It is very common to use coconut and almond flour interchangeably when baking on keto, however, you need the right proportions to get the best results.
- 1 cup almond flour = 1/3 cup coconut flour
- 1/3 coconut flour = 2/3 cup almond flour + 1.5 tbsp ground psyllium husk powder
*Results may vary based on the brands used.
Other Low-Carb Flour Alternatives
There are other lesser known low carb flour substitutes that you can use when baking on keto.
Also known as ground flax or linseed, this nutritious keto flour replacement is great for baking on a keto diet.
2 tablespoons of flaxseed contain 70 calories, 4.5 grams of fat, 5g carbs, 3g protein, and 1g net carbs.
It’s great for making cakes, bread, cookies, and muffins due to its earthy and nutty taste. It can also act as an egg replacement by mixing 1tbsp flaxseed powder with 2 tbsp water and letting it form a gel.
Soy flour is made from ground soybeans. Like coconut flour, it is quite dry and easily absorbs liquid and moisture. It also has more protein than the keto flours we mentioned above and is an excellent source of dietary fiber.
Ensure that you buy organic soy flour so that you can avoid GMO soybeans and the pesticides that are on them.
Sesame seed flour is another low carb flour alternative. By using sesame flour with psyllium powder, you can make your favorite baked goods light and fluffy. However, like coconut flour, sesame flour has high absorption properties.
Low Carb Sugar in Baking
Another important aspect of baking on keto is the type of sweetener used.
There are a couple of low carb sweeteners that are quite common. However, in this post, we will only explore the best keto sweetener for baking.
Erythritol is low carb sweetener that is from commonly used for baking on the keto diet. It is a sugar alchohol that doesn’t have negative effects on blood sugar.
Erythritol also comes in a powdered form and a granular form that’s super versatile.
This brand by So Nourished can be used to replace sugar in keto recipes.
MONK FRUIT SWEETENER
This is an Asian fruit that has recently become popular in the West. It’s also called the longevity fruit, and it originated from China and Thailand.
When trying to find a monk fruit sweetener, look at the labels to see what ingredients it contains. If it has anything other than monk fruit extract and inulin, it’s best to avoid it unless you are comfortable with the other ingredients.
A good monk fruit sweetener is Pure Monk Sugar Free Sweetener.
Optional Low Carb Ingredients For Baking
Because the low carb flours above are missing a crucial component- gluten, protein powder is a great ingredient for a more structured baked good.
Protein powder is useful in low carb baking because it has a similar binding effect as gluten. For this reason, it is able to add the texture that you are looking for in your keto cakes and bread.
One pound can last you six months or more. If you have any dairy allergies, stick with egg white protein powder.
Recommended Protein Powders:
- Jay Robb – Egg White Protein Powder
- Jarrow Formulas Whey Protein
- Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Casein Protein Powder