Baking cookies is something that many people like to do as a treat on the weekends. If you’re someone who likes to bake a lot, then you might be considering making them again sometime soon.
There are many different cookie recipes out there that you can try. Pretty much all of them are going to call for you to use standard flour to get things to turn out right.
What if you don’t have any normal flour around that you can utilize, though? What if all you have in the kitchen is bread flour?
Read on to get information about whether or not you can use bread flour for cookies and get good results. This will help you to know whether using it’s a good idea or whether it’s something that you should avoid when baking cookies.
Bread Flour Can Indeed Be Used for Cookies
Yes, bread flour is going to be able to be used for cookies so long as you like your cookies to turn out a specific way. When you make cookies using bread flour instead of using standard all-purpose flour, they’re going to turn out differently.
Your cookies will come out of the oven looking really nice when you bake them with bread flour. They turn out kind of chewy and will be just a bit crispy if you baked them to perfection.
Many people feel that chocolate chip cookies made using bread flour turn out amazingly well. Some like bread flour chocolate chip cookies better than cookies made using all-purpose flour.
Being able to enjoy the nice chewiness of the cookie can make it better than usual for some. Depending on your sensibilities, you might prefer cookies that are made using all-purpose flour, but it’s up to you to decide after having tasted both versions.
Why Do the Cookies Turn Out So Chewy?
The cookies turn out so chewy when they’re made using bread flour because of the composition of the bread flour. Out of all of the types of flour that you can use to bake things, bread flour contains the most protein.
It is said that bread four contains between 12% and 14% protein, and it will make it so that the cookies have more volume than usual. This protein content will also work with the eggs and butter in the recipe to form a powerful gluten network.
If that doesn’t make any sense to you, then it’s okay. It’s just a fancy way of saying that all of the moisture from the butter and eggs combine with the increased protein content to make the cookies very chewy.
This could be great if you really like your chocolate chip cookies to turn out chewy. However, if you’re someone who finds chewy cookies to be a bit of an annoyance, you’re going to want to stay far away from bread flour when baking cookies.
The taste of bread flour cookies will be very appealing to some and less appealing to others. Generally, they’re going to be the same as cookies made using all-purpose flour except that they’re way chewier and more voluminous.
Can You Substitute Bread Flour for All-Purpose Flour Cup for Cup?
When you’re planning to use bread flour instead of all-purpose bread flour, it’s important to make sure that you’re doing things right. You might be worried that due to bread flour being different from all-purpose flour, you’ll need to use less of it to make your cookies.
This simply isn’t the case, and you can actually substitute bread flour for all-purpose flour cup for cup. You just have to understand that the cookies are going to turn out differently than they would if you had used all-purpose flour.
Using the same amount of bread flour that you would all-purpose flour is the right move to make. Follow the recipe that you’re using and just use the bread flour that you have in your kitchen instead.
The only thing that you should know is that bread flour will generally cause baked goods to turn out a bit dry when compared to all-purpose flour. This is due to the high protein content in the flour, but you can offset this by adding a bit of water if you want to.
When you’re baking cookies, it shouldn’t be necessary because you have so many other ingredients providing moisture. As noted earlier, the bread flour works with ingredients such as butter and eggs when creating the significant gluten network that makes the cookies chewy.
Try a Recipe for Cookies That Uses Bread Flour
If all you have to use in your kitchen is bread flour, then you could use a different recipe. Sometimes you’ll get even better results when you choose to go with something that is meant to use bread flour than you would if you substitute it for all-purpose flour in a standard cookie recipe.
Recipes that call for bread flour are more likely to take into account the fact that the cookies will be denser than usual. They understand that you’ll be using bread flour and that the cookies should turn out a bit denser and chewier than they typically would in other cookie recipes.
It’s easy enough to find bread flour cookie recipes online that you can utilize. If you haven’t started baking yet, then looking up a new recipe might very well be worth your time.
When you want to enjoy the best cookies possible, it’s going to make sense to seek out an ideal recipe. Find a recipe that suits the ingredients that you have available to use and you should have a good experience with baking the cookies.
What Are Other Types of Flour That You Could Use?
Of course, bread flour and all-purpose flour aren’t the only flour types out there. If you’re looking for a substitute for all-purpose flour, then you might be able to use some other type of flour that you have sitting around in your kitchen.
If you don’t find the idea of making very chewy cookies to be that appealing, then you might like how some other flour types would turn out better. Keep reading to get more information about other types of flour that you can use in cookies instead of all-purpose flour.
Spelt flour is a type of flour that comes very close to replicating all-purpose flour in certain ways. It has almost the same protein content as all-purpose flour, and this means that it will perform closer to the same as all-purpose flour when baking cookies.
You can substitute spelt flour for all-purpose flour cup for cup without it being an issue. The only issue to keep an eye out for is whether or not the batter will turn out too dry.
Sometimes the batter can be a bit drier than usual when you’re using spelt flour. This might require you to add a bit more moisture than usual.
If you’re using enough ingredients such as butter and eggs, then everything is likely going to be fine. Overall, if you have spelt flour, it might be a closer substitute than using bread flour.
There are even recipes for cookies that use spelt flour specifically. People like how cookies turn out when using spelt flour as an ingredient, and this is well worth trying.
Whole Wheat Flour
Whole wheat flour is likely going to be a much worse substitute for all-purpose flour than bread flour. You see, whole wheat flour has an even higher protein content than bread flour does.
If you do decide to use whole wheat flour for your cookies, then it might be best to mix it with all-purpose flour. If your issue is that you don’t have enough all-purpose flour for your cookie recipe, maybe using half whole wheat flour will be enough to get the job done.
When you use entirely whole wheat flour to bake cookies, it makes them turn out dry. You can attempt to counteract this by adding a lot more moisture, but things will likely still turn out far too dense.
If all you have is whole wheat flour, then it’s recommended to try to find a specific recipe that utilizes whole wheat flour. Things might turn out better that way and you can have a good time with it.
Pastry flour is another type of flour that you might have in your kitchen. It works fine as a substitute for all-purpose flour, but it’s generally better for cakes and other types of pastries.
This is a type of flour that does a good job when you’re trying to make a tender pastry dessert. It’s a softer flour that might not be ideal for certain types of cookies.
Recipes for cookies using pastry flour do exist, though, and they can turn out pretty tasty. If you’re in a pinch, then you can use pastry flour to make good cookies if you want to.
It’s also worth noting that when you’re baking things such as cakes and breads, it’s possible to substitute all-purpose flour for pastry flour. It works out fine because they’re fairly close to one another.
Cake flour has a very low protein content, and this means that it’s best used for things such as cakes. If you’re going to try to use cake flour as a substitute for all-purpose flour in your cookies, you’ll need to make some modifications to the recipe.
For every cup of all-purpose flour that a recipe calls for, you should use one cup and two tablespoons of cake flour. This should allow you to get results that will come close enough to replicating what all-purpose flour would do.
You can use this to make cookies using cake flour if you want and it shouldn’t be a big deal. All you need to do is use a bit more cake flour than you would if you were using all-purpose flour.
Overall, cake flour is going to be a good substitute for all-purpose flour so long as you’re doing things right. Many people keep cake flour around if they bake a lot of cakes as well, and that means there’s a decent chance that you might have some in your kitchen.
You Can Always Go Buy More All-Purpose Flour
Of course, if you don’t like the idea of substituting all-purpose flour in your recipe, then you can just make a trip to the store. All-purpose flour isn’t generally an ingredient that will be hard to find since it’s sold at any grocery store and most department stores that sell grocery items.
If you just want to ensure that your recipe turns out exactly how you remember it turning out, using all-purpose flour is your best bet. Other types of flour can approximate all-purpose flour nicely, but there’s nothing wrong with just sticking with what you know.
If you only have bread flour that you can use, then it’s going to be just fine to use it to bake your cookies. Bread flour can easily be used as a substitute for all-purpose flour, but that doesn’t mean that things will turn out exactly like normal.
Whenever you use a different type of flour than a recipe calls for, it’s going to make it so that things turn out differently. Bread flour is well known for making cookies that turn out to be very chewy and kind of dense.
You might find that your cookies will be a bit heavy and harder to eat if you choose to make them using bread flour. However, many people prefer cookies made using bread flour because they enjoy the overall chewiness.
Whether or not you’ll love bread flour cookies depends on your own sensibilities. It’s just important to know that you won’t be getting the exact same type of cookie when you choose to bake using bread flour instead of all-purpose flour.
It might even be best to look up a recipe that is specifically calling for bread flour if you want to get predictable results. If you don’t like chewy cookies, then it might be better to go to the store and find some all-purpose flour instead of improvising with what you have around the house.
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.