Saturday, November 19, 2016

Bob's Red Mill vs. Trader Joe's: Blanched Almond Flour Debate

There are two new blanched almond flour products on the market!  Blanched almond flour is ground almonds without the skins, which makes it suitable for baking and is especially great in gluten-free and paleo baking.

Bob's Red Mill already offers blanched almond flour, but it got much criticism for being too coarse for baking.  So, they recently came out with a "super fine" almond flour. Trader Joe's already offers almond meal (i.e.,  has the skins on), which is not good for baking. They recently came out with blanched almond flour that is "extra fine".

I put them to the test using Against All Grain's (gluten-free/paleo) chocolate chip cookies recipe.

Both flours looked identical to the naked eye and had the same batter mixing experience. After baking, cookie texture was the same across both flours. As for the rest...

Trader Joe's
Tasted like the real thing
Did not puff up while baking
Final product had some cracks
Cost $7.99 at my local TJ

Bob's Red Mill:
Nutty flavor, which would help a chocolate walnut / macadamia cookie (can eliminate the extra nuts)
Puffed up while baking but deflated once out of the oven
Final product had fewer cracks
Cost $9.59 at my local grocery store

***WINNER***: Trader Joe's by a landslide!!! TJ dominated the flavor. The cost was a nice bonus. Cracks were not a big deal.

Caveat: My family gobbled down all the cookies and liked both types (albeit TJ a little more) so you can't go wrong with either brand. Both are much better than using a coarser flour (e.g., TJ cashew flour circa 2015) which yields the right flavor but wrong texture.


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