Healthy Flour Alternatives

Most recipes you may come across call for good old white flour, also known as all-purpose flour.  What’s so wrong with that? A lot. All-purpose white flour is basically just empty calories – short-term energy that makes our blood sugar spike without any nutritional value. Did you know that white flour is actually wheat stripped of the whole-grain elements (the bran and the germ) so it lacks fiber and nutrients found in other flour alternatives. White flour is also commonly bleached white with chemicals…yuck.


Whether you’re making cookies, muffins, pancakes, scones, or dessert, substituting white flour for one of the following healthier options will upgrade your recipe into a lighter, more nutritious, easier to digest option simply with this one easy switch.

  • Coconut flour is made of the superfood coconut, making it gluten-free, paleo, high in fiber, protein, energy, and low in carbohydrates. It’s dense and yields great pancakes (like these Delightful Banana Pancakes) and baked goods.
  • Almond Flour (almond meal) is made of almonds, also gluten-free, paleo, high in protein, and healthy fats. The difference between the two is simply that almond meal includes the whole nut while almond flour is made from blanched (skinless) almonds, both packed in vitamins and minerals. Try these Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins made with almond flour.
  • Quinoa Flour is made of grinding the seed we all know and love, quinoa! You can buy quinoa flour or you can grind your own uncooked seeds. High in fiber and nutrients, this gluten-free flour is light, a bit nutty, and a complete protein, making the perfect post-workout treats.
  • Spelt Flour is a species of wheat that is light, nutty, and high in protein, carbohydrates, and fiber. It is one of the oldest crops in history and very versatile. Although spelt does contain gluten, it is known to have many health benefits, including numerous minerals necessary for bone health. You can read more about spelt flour here.
  • Chickpea Flour, made of only chickpeas, is high in protein, fiber, and nutrients like folate, iron, magnesium, and zinc, and naturally gluten free.
  • Oat Flour is simply ground oats. You can purchase it at a health food store or just grind up your own raw oats in a blender or coffee grinder. Oats are super high in fiber and other vitamins and minerals, so you can’t go wrong with this healthy option. Just be sure to search for “gluten free” if you’re sensitive to gluten. (Oats don’t actually contain gluten; however, they can be processed in a plant with gluten.)

One Healthy Breakdown: get empowered with healthy flours!

Indulging in Anke of Anke’s Fit Bakery


Within minutes of chatting with Anke of Anke’s Fit Bakery, I could tell this woman not only knows her stuff, but was also going to be someone I just want to know. And, I was right. I could chat with Anke all day! I not only learned a ton about baking, healthy eating, and working out, I was enamored by her wit and humor! Anke is definitely someone I’m glad to know, and I know I’m not the only one around here!

Food that tastes good and is good for you? Baked with love by a personal trainer who practices what she preaches? Who happens to be a fun Hamptons local? Like, like, like, a lot. As an athlete, personal trainer, and people-person, with cooking in her blood, Anke was destined to make life’s deepest pleasures healthy. And that she did.

Anke sells her cookies, muffins, granola, breads, crackers, and energy bars, across Long Island and NYC. Don’t be silly, this is not diet food, Anke told me straight up, her cookies are not going to make us all skinny minnies. A cookie is a cookie is a cookie. (Ah, honesty from the chef, how refreshing!) Anke’s cookies may just be a miracle our bodies need, though. There’s a lot to be said for a personal trainer who started baking to incorporate satisfying, healthy sweets into her client’s diets (and it worked.)

Anke’s baked goods use pure, natural, wholesome ingredients combined by the expert to give your body nutrients while simultaneously satisfying our sweet tooth. Anke explained that the difference between her cookies and the common large-chain packaged cookies we can buy at any grocery store (or gas station for that matter) is simply pure ingredients. Anke’s cookies are made with pure oats or spelt flour, both of which our bodies are familiar with. Our bodies know how to digest these foods, they’re nutritious, high in fiber, and low on the glycemic index. In other words, these healthier ingredients digest slowly in our bodies, aka we get long-term energy and satisfaction that lasts. Those processed sweets have tons and tons of added sugar and salt just to cover the taste of other fake ingredients, which is why most people can never just have one cookie or a few potato chips. Processed food covered in more salt and sugar is addicting.

As Anke says, granola bars should have oats, nuts, and sugar. Read the package of your favorite granola bar, the long list of unfamiliar ingredients is shocking enough to turn you off forever. If not, the feeling in your stomach after eating these foods, your body knows you’re not giving it the good stuff. These processed snacks spike our sugar levels, so we’re wired and then we crash. Wholesome ingredients, on the other hand, give us the long-lasting energy we need for our busy lives. It’s simple, as Anke explained, when using real, nutritious ingredients, you can’t go wrong.

After our meeting, I was more than happy to come home to taste test some of Anke’s Fit Cranberry Almond Oat Cookies and Rosemary & Black Olive Flatbread as I prepped dinner. An hour later, I set a home-cooked meal of salmon, rice, broccoli, and brussel sprouts on the table with the flatbread on the side…the flatbread was the hit of the meal! Afterwards, I had to test out the Chocolate Cake (yum!) and the granola…mmmm the granola! These definitely are not diet foods, I can attest to that! And I can also attest to feeling good about eating good ingredients, knowing you’re feeding your body with nutrients and great taste.

Anke’s go-to ingredient? Spelt flour. While spelt flour has been cultivated for centuries, it’s less common than white and wheat flour because it doesn’t mass-produce like wheat; however, a little bit goes a long way. With slightly less calories and slightly more protein than wheat, spelt flour is as pure as pure can be. Anke said that some of her clients with gluten sensitivities do really well with spelt because it’s far less-processed. Even though spelt actually higher in gluten, our bodies know how to digest it. She uses organic maple syrup (yum!) or sucanat to sweeten, as they’re far less processed than other sugars, and, again, our bodies know how to break them down and maximize the benefits.

The woman doesn’t just know about baked goods, she’s all about weight training, experimenting in the kitchen, and listening to the body. A brilliant Anke quote to wrap up: “the cleaner you eat the more your body will tell you what you need.” Meaning, that the more real food you put into your body, your mindfulness and that mind-body connection will strengthen. Anke’s example was when she went through her vegetarian stage, as lots of women do, thinking they’ll be way healthier and lose tons of weight. She said that every few months or so, she would get this intense, unavoidable craving for a burger. She’d call her friends and say “we ARE going to get burgers tonight, I need one.” She’d eat the burger, loving every bite, satisfy her desire, and the craving for red meat would go away for months. If you feed your body real food, you will become more in-tuned to what you really need. It’s amazing to me that this is true. When your body needs nutrients found in certain foods, your taste buds will crave them.

One Healthy Breakdown: Anke’s Fit Bakery combines her two passions: exercise and baking. The perfect ingredients for a good life…Anke and I have lots in common!