Baking with nut flours as opposed to traditional baking flours is quite difficult and takes getting used to. It will be extremely difficult to get nice fluffy bread from the oven with nut flours. But yet on a low carb or ketogenic diet, bread is what people miss the most. So learning to bake with low carb flours to make low carb bread can be extremely rewarding.
For example, if you are trying to bake low-carb bread, almond flour can be very dense and does not like to rise. But it does have a taste preferred over other low-carb flours. It is better to use almond flour combined with another more fluffy flour, or just use it in cracker recipes.
For bread, coconut flour does a much better job for fluffiness, however, coconut flour must be reduced by more than half in a recipe, plus more eggs are usually required. In addition, some people don't like a coconut taste to their bread - it can be overwhelming if you don't like coconut.
I remember my first time years ago baking with coconut flour. I made the assumption that it is normal flour and can be substituted directly for regular baking flour. What a mistake! I kept adding more and more milk to get the normal consistency I needed for the recipe. It was a disaster. I read up and learned later that I needed about 1/6 of the coconut flour that I added!
What is even more frustrating is that not all of these flours are available in stores. And when they are, they can be pretty darn expensive. For example, I can usually find almond flour in almost every grocery store I go to nowadays. However, for a small package it is very expensive. But, I can find it online on Amazon for a much more affordable price. And even more cheaper in bulk. I've found that the Anthony's brand on Amazon is the most affordable for most baking products in bulk.
Some of these products aren't available at all in stores, but I've found the unique baking supplies can make the best low-carb bread (and in some recipes, no carb bread). These keto baking ingredients are the ones like oat fiber. If done correctly, you can make a low-carb, fluffy bread without the egg taste with oat fiber, but you can rarely find it in stores.
If you are new to keto, and even more new to baking with low-carb flours, I've listed what I commonly require. These ingredients should cover most keto, LCHF or paleo diet recipes that you'll find online.
Recommended Grocery List for Low-Carb Baking Recipes
Almond Flour contains the same amount of carbs as almonds, about 2 net carbs per ounce of flour. It is good for baking, pizza crusts or crackers.
At the time of posting this, a 5 lb bulk bag of almond flour was $28.99 per bag, or $5.80 per pound. Compare this to purchasing Bob's Red Mill in stores for up to $12 per pound. If you'd like a finer ground flour for only slightly more in bulk, try this finer Almond Flour.
Coconut Flour contains a higher amount of carbs per volume than almonds (2 net carbs per 2 tablespoons), but substitution in a recipe requires much less coconut flour.
At the time of this post you can purchase coconut flour cheaply, so it may not be necessary to purchase in bulk. Currently this flour is about $10-12 for a 5 lb bag. And remember, coconut flour goes a lot further than other flours in baking.
Flaxseed (ground) is a very good ingredient for crackers. A small amount can add a bit of texture and nutty flavor to breads. Contains about 0.5 grams net carbs in one ounce.
I can find 1 lb bags of ground flaxseed cheaper in stores, except if buying in bulk. Buying in bulk again, is much more economical.
Ground Chia Seeds
Chia seeds (ground) is similar to flaxseed. It can be used as a binder and egg substitute for vegans. Contains about 2 grams net carbs in one ounce.
Ground chia seeds are more expensive. It may be better to use whole chia seeds, or substitute ground flaxseed for baking purposes. Whole chia seeds can also be used in drinks to add Omega-3's and fiber.
Oat Fiber is an awesome zero carb, zero calorie flour! It is only fiber, so does not count toward carbs or calories.
Buy it in bulk because once you try our zero carb bread recipe, you'll be using this flour all the time.
Psyllium Husk (ground)
Psyllium Husk Powder is similar to oat fiber in that it is zero carb, however, it cannot be used alone in baking recipes. Use in addition to add bulk to almond flour recipes.
Did we mention this is hard to find in stores? Whole Foods had only one option for ground psyllium husk powder.
Inulin Fiber Powder
Inulin Powder is a prebiotic fiber that can be used to add sweetness without carbs or calories. Similar to psyllium husk, do not use alone. You'll see it in low-carb ice creams where it is called chicory root fiber.
Another ingredient that will be very difficult to find in stores. You may not need it if you do basic baking, but if you're a specialized baker you may like it to have it in your repertoire.
Xanthan gum is a thickening agent. It is best used for sauces and gravies, but can be used in baking as well. It does create a gooey/gummy consistency. Very little is needed in recipes (teaspoons), so we don't recommend buying in bulk.
Erythritol (granular) is a sugar alcohol that can be used to add sweetness. Can substitute for sugar. High amounts of sugar alcohols are known to cause digestive issues, so mix with stevia or inulin powder.
Stevia is a natural sugar substitute good for baking. It has a bitter after-taste, so for the best taste use with a mix of erythritol and inulin powder. This one is already a mix of stevia and erythritol.
You can usually find affordable stevia in stores. But careful that it is not mixed with maltodextrin, a sneaky cutting agent that has a high glycemic index (aka it raises your blood glucose and insulin higher than sugar would). Most commonly found these days are those that are mixed with erythritol. You can use that or a pure concentrated form.