Perhaps the best-known and most easily accessible thickening agent is cornstarch. Derived from the endosperm of corn and then fermented, cornstarch is highly processed and not particularly nutritious. Arrowroot, agar agar or kanten , and kuzu are all more natural thickening agents that you can substitute for cornstarch. Arrowroot is a perennial herb found in rain forest habitats. It also freezes well, so you can use it in dishes that you plan to reheat later. Relatively flavorless, and low in fiber and calories, arrowroot is known for being easy on the stomach. Once considered to be powerfully medicinal, arrowroot is now thought to have few nutritional properties, although there is some evidence that it may help to lower cholesterol. You can buy arrowroot starch here. Agar agar known in Japanese as Kanten is derived from red algae, and is most commonly used as a thickener in Asian desserts it sets like jello , as well as a clarifying agent in brewing beer. It has been part of a fad diet in Asia and has recently received some press coverage in the U.
Low-carb Cornstarch Substitutes
Substitute For Kudzu (Kuzu) Starch
Kudzu starch is a thickener made from the root of the kuzu plant. The plant root is dried and flaked. To use the starch, mix the flakes with water until they dissolve, then add the liquid to the ingredients to be thickened. Kuzu is tropical vine native to Japan and China and is a major "pest plant" that overtakes everything in its path including trees and buildings. Look for kudzu in Asian markets or you can purchase it online at Amazon. Popular Features: Cooking Videos. Join now! Sign In. View Cart. Kudzu starch.
Strategies, Tips, and Tricks for Using These Cooking Agents
Questions frequently arise. What can I use instead of gelatin? Are arrowroot and cornstarch really interchangeable? How do I thicken a gravy if my guests can't eat wheat? And how does arrowroot, tapioca flour, or potato starch function in a muffin recipe? Each thickening ingredient has unique qualities, and each performs differently. Over the years, I've used these thickening options in a variety of ways, but I wanted to experiment with all of them at the same time to answer my own questions. How was each different in a gravy, sauce, or fruit dessert? Devra asked, "Are you going to use rice flour?
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