Cornstarch is a go-to ingredient when it comes to thickening sauces, gravies, and soups. Its neutral flavor and powerful thickening capability make it a kitchen staple. However, if you find yourself without cornstarch in the middle of cooking, fret not! You can use several alternatives to achieve the desired consistency in your dishes. Explore various ways to craft a cornstarch substitute to keep your culinary creation on track.
Flour as a Cornstarch Substitute
All-purpose flour can serve as a reliable substitute for cornstarch, though it requires a bit more quantity to achieve the same thickening effect.
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- For every 1 tablespoon of cornstarch needed, use 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour.
- Mix the flour with a little cold water to make a slurry before adding it to your recipe to avoid lumps.
Arrowroot Powder as a Cornstarch Substitute
Arrowroot powder is a natural thickener that provides a clear, glossy finish to the dishes, making it a perfect alternative to cornstarch.
- 1 tablespoon arrowroot powder
- Use arrowroot powder as a 1:1 substitute for cornstarch.
- Like cornstarch, mix arrowroot with cold water to create a slurry before incorporating it into your hot liquid.
Tapioca Starch as a Cornstarch Substitute
Tapioca starch, extracted from the cassava root, is another excellent thickening agent.
- 1 tablespoon tapioca starch
- Use tapioca starch as a 1:1 substitute for cornstarch.
- Create a slurry with cold water before adding it to your recipe to prevent lumps.
Potato Starch as a Cornstarch Substitute
Potato starch can be used as a substitute for cornstarch, providing a similar texture.
- 1 tablespoon potato starch
- Use potato starch as a 1:1 substitute for cornstarch.
- Mix with cold water to make a slurry before incorporating it into your recipe.
Rice Flour as a Cornstarch Substitute
Rice flour can also serve as a cornstarch substitute, especially in Asian cuisine.
- 2 tablespoons rice flour
- For every 1 tablespoon of cornstarch needed, use 2 tablespoons of rice flour.
- Mix the rice flour with cold water to create a slurry before adding it to your dish.
Frequently Asked Questions about Cornstarch
What is cornstarch?
Cornstarch is a fine, powdery flour derived from corn, used as a thickening agent in cooking and baking.
Why is cornstarch used in recipes?
Cornstarch is used to thicken sauces, gravies, and soups. It’s favored for its ability to thicken without altering the flavor and for creating a clear, glossy finish in dishes.
Can I use flour instead of cornstarch?
Yes, all-purpose flour can be used instead of cornstarch, but you’ll need to use twice as much flour to achieve the same thickening effect.
How should I store cornstarch to ensure its freshness?
Store cornstarch in a cool, dry place in an airtight container to prevent it from absorbing moisture and odors. Keeping it away from heat and light will also help maintain its thickening power.