Almond Meal Vs. Almond Flour – If you have ever followed a low-carb or a gluten-free diet, the significance of including almond flour in it is known to you. After all, it is one of the famous gluten-free ingredients, which is an integral part of different dishes, right from veggies to cookies.
However, even almond meal is used as a baking ingredient. This results in confusion not only among baking cooks but also among those who are fond of using almond flour. They do think about almond meal vs. almond flour and whether almond meal can replace almond flour or not.
Most of them who are familiar with both casually say they both are same. As a fact, they are generally the same but there is a slight difference that sets them apart. Not knowing this makes them think that both almond meal and almond flour labels in departmental stores mean the same thing.
However, knowing the difference is essential. You might be surprised to know that both of them may not be substitutable in all recipes. Each of the two has its own characteristics due to which the recipe’s texture and color can change.
Almond Meal vs. Almond Flour: The Meaning Difference
Let’s first understood the difference between flour and meal. A flour refers to the finest powder, while a meal is the next finest output that is finer than grits and thicker than flour. By nature, almond flour is coarser than the standard flour of wheat. Grinding almonds much finely results in its butter.
Thus, almond flour is the result of finely ground almonds. Before processed to flour, the almonds are processed a bit but do not affect your health in a negative way. Their skins are removed to obtain the needed fine and fleecy texture. The almonds are blanched in this way to get a crisp white color.
On the other hand, the almond meal is made by implementing a process similar to make a flour. The resultant outcome is somewhat larger or coarser. In simple words, it is just not some finely ground flour.
Almond Meal vs. Almond Flour: The Processing Difference
Almond flour is usually prepared using blanched almonds that have no skins. On the other hand, almonds for almond meal have the skin intact. These skin-on almonds result in a bit grainy texture as well as a bit denser output.
Most people are more inclined towards having an almond meal. This is because the almonds are not blanched. With the skin intact, these almonds have additional nutrients, which are otherwise lost in blanching.
You can make almond meal at home by grinding whole almonds such that you do not reach to the butter consistency. Similarly, you can make almond flour at home by blanching almonds and grinding it.
It is fine to use both of them for a variety of applications, such as breads, nutty cookies, and cakes. Just note that only two ounces of raw almonds give you more than 200 calories, which is also what you get from an almond meal made at home.
You can buy both almond flour and almond meal from grocery stores or make at home. However, do not replace each other if finer or coarser texture is critical.
See also: Gluten-free Flours