Almond flour or meal is made from whole almonds. Blanched almond meal is where the outer husks are removed and then the almonds are grown into flour. Regular almond meal is ground roasted almonds with the husks so it is not as fine.
Benefits of Almond Flour
Almond flour is high in the fatty acids that are needed in the body. It is also high in protein and low in carbohydrates. It bakes up rather nicely in a variety of baked goods if you need to avoid grains.
Baking with Almond flour
This flour loves eggs and will need them to keep the baked goods together. If you or someone you are baking for cannot have eggs then it will need flax meal and chia seeds to hold this together.
Some of my favorite blogs for recipes made with almond meal are:
- Real Sustenance
- Elena's Pantry
Dangers of Too Much Almond Flour
Be careful with almond flour. Too much will upset the fatty acid balance as almonds and nuts are high in omega 6's. We need a balance of omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids so too much nuts in the form of almonds, almond meal or flour, and almond milk can easily cause an imbalance of omega 6's especially if you are avoiding grains.
Lauren of Empowered Sustenance wrote an article back in April where she expressed some very strong cautions against using almond flour regularly in baking. Her reasons were as follows:
- Using almonds in a flour form affects our sense of how much we are really using and it is very easy to get a much larger amount of almonds that we would eat.
- Almond flour is high in Omega 6 fatty acids and that can slow the metabolism and cause inflammation as well as lead to other causes.
- The fats in almonds and its flour are not heat stable so the fats oxidize and release free radicals, something we don't want.
- If a person has an issue with oxalates, almond flour is very high in them and can cause much more trouble for that person.
Her recommendation and mine: Use almond flour in moderation. It has a place but don't overdo. I recommend coconut flour over almond flour much of the time as these same issues don't exist with coconut flour.