Not eating sugar and flour but missing baked goods? Here are my best sugar and flour free baking hacks for making delicious, healthy treats with well formed textures.
Why Sugar & Flour Free?
A few years ago, I stopped eating sugar and flour entirely (I was in a strict weight loss program at the time) and during that time I learned a lot about how those foods impact my body. These days, I’ve moved away from that program toward a more flexible way of eating, and have slowly reintroduced all foods back into my diet. But I did take away some important lessons from my days of sugar and flour free eating.
I learned that sugar and flour doesn’t always sit well with me, and that the time of day seems to play a significant role. Cutting those foods out of my diet for a time taught me that sweet, highly-processed breakfasts never get the day off to the right start. If I start my day with a bunch of sugar and flour, I find myself on a mood and blood sugar roller coaster, chasing my hunger and energy levels all day.
Enter these delicious, nutritious, filling, low-glycemic breakfast concoctions. I still adore them, even though I do eat sugar and flour, because they are just so tasty and make me feel sooo good!
In this post I’ve shared all of my strategies for how to bake without sugar and flour, so that whether you eat those foods or not, you can enjoy flavorful, filling, delicious, nutrition-packed baked goods with hearty, well-formed textures.
I hope these yummy, healthy treats become a mainstay of your breakfast routine too!
These Delightful Treats are Great For
- Staying full until lunch!
- Batch prepping ahead and enjoying throughout the week
- Traveling (I’ve brought these on many red-eye plane rides)
- Camping or hiking
- Diabetics or people who like to eat foods with a low glycemic index
- Using up odds and ends in your pantry
- Using up overripe bananas
The Challenges of Sugar & Flour Free Baking
Flour-free and sweetener-free baking can be tricky. Without flour, it’s hard for moisture to absorb and it’s easy for baked goods to come out mushy. Without sweetener, flavors can be underwhelming, especially since the idea of cookies, muffins, and breads trigger flavor memories and expectations of highly palatable and desirable treats.
Why These Sugar & Flour Free Baking Hacks Work
These decadent yet wholesome breakfast goodies work without flour or sweetener by using whole grains, fresh fruit, ripe bananas, and the healthy fats and oils in nut butter.
The oats are lightly processed in many of these recipes by pulsing them in a food processor, not to the point of flour but just enough to help with absorbency in baking. If you are comfortable processing the oats very finely, go ahead. High protein flours such as quinoa, chickpea, almond, and oat are flours are often tolerated well by those who don’t like to eat a lot of flour products. This is also the reasoning behind legume pasta being acceptable for many following a flour free diet.
As for sweeteners, mashed bananas are plenty sweet for my taste. If I’m baking for others who prefer sweeter foods, I might lightly sweeten these recipes with a teaspoon or two of a minimally processed, low glycemic sweetener such as honey, maple syrup, or agave nectar. For the sweetest baked goods made without processed sweeteners, use overly ripe bananas.
Kitchen Essentials for Sugar & Flour Free Baking
To make these tasty treats, you’ll need a few basics. Here’s what I use on a weekly basis:
- A sheet pan or cookie sheet
Parchmentpaper or a silicone baking mat
- Mini loaf pans
- Silicone cupcake liners
- A good quality ceramic baking dish
- A 9×9 square cake pan (for bars)
My Best Sugar & Flour Free Baking Hacks
Coarsely Processing Oats
While it isn’t strictly necessary, coarsely processing them in a food processor improves absorbency and adds texture to flourless baked goods. To do this, add the oats to a food processor, and process 10-15 seconds, until some oats are coarsely ground and others are still whole. I do this in large batches and store the oats in the pantry in a lidded container, ready for use.
If it’s important to you not to eat flour, don’t process them too finely, or, just skip this step. I have found that even just breaking up the grains a little bit improves the texture of the baked goods. As always, do what works best for you.
Maximize the Surface Area to Avoid Gooey Centers
For breads, don’t use deep loaf pans, without flour your baked goods are likely to come out gooey in the center, even if baked for hours. I recommend using muffin tins with silicone muffin liners or these adorable mini loaf pans. For casserole-style baked oatmeal, spread the batter in a shallow layer in a wider dish rather than a deeper layer in a taller dish.
How To Make a Flax Egg
“Flax eggs” are a popular substitute for regular eggs in vegan baking. Both regular eggs and flax eggs work great in these baking recipes and can be swapped out 1-for-1.
To make a flax egg, mix 1 Tbsp of ground flax seed with 3 Tbsp of warm water in a small bowl and let it sit for 5 minutes to thicken. If you have an issue with flax, you can do the same thing with chia seeds to make a “chia egg.”
Baking Powder vs. Baking Soda
I’ve found that baking powder works best for leavening flourless baked goods. Baking soda is more ideal when acidic ingredients are present such as lemon juice, cocoa powder, vinegar, or sweeteners.
I love seeing your remakes! If you try any of these tasty breakfast treats, I want to see! Leave a comment below, rate it, or tag me in your meal pics on Instagram @katiesconsciouskitchen. Or, join my free private facebook group to share your creations and inspire others!
Gallery of Yummy Sugar & Flour Free Baking Recipes
Happy baking! Which are your favorites?