How to Bake with Cake Flour, Bread Flour, and More

Different kinds of flour are used for different things!

All you have to do is walk through the baking aisle to know that there are plenty of different flours to bake with: some are for bread, some are for cakes, and some are for delicate pastries. How do you know which ones to use and how to use them? Here’s our quick guide to knowing the different types of flours and how to bake with them.


More from
Let these tips guide you through your first baking adventure!



1 All-Purpose Flour


Use for: anything!


All-purpose flour is the most common and most versatile type of flour. Also called white flour, this fine-textured variety is packed with B vitamins and iron. It’s made of a combination of high-gluten hard wheat and low-gluten soft wheat, making it ideal for most baked goods.



2 Cake Flour


Use for: delicate cakes, bars, fruit loaves


Fine and silky cake flour is made of low-gluten soft wheat. This means it is high in starch and has a lower protein content, making it the most suitable type of flour for soft, tender, and delicate products. Use it if you’re going for an extra moist cake, bar, or fruit loaf.


More from
Every bite of mamon is soft and fluffy!


3 Bread Flour


Use for: yeast breads, chewy cookies


Bread flour, on the other hand, is high in gluten. It is a blend of hard-wheat flour and barley flour, and is rich in vitamin C. It’s the strongest type of flour, which means it can provide support to sturdier products like yeast breads. If you want chewier crumbs and a browner crust (especially with cookies!), make sure to use this variety.


More from
We sat down with the one of the country's busiest bakers and got a few tips on how to start making our best bread yet.


4 Whole Wheat Flour


Use for: bread, dense cakes and cookies


Choose whole wheat flour if you want to make your baked goods healthier. This dark brown flour contains wheat germ, making it relatively higher in fiber, nutrients, and fat. It is full-flavored, and products using this type of flour are usually denser than those made with white flour.


More from
Take a closer look at these labels.


5 Corn Flour


Use for: corn bread, sourdough, pastries, breading


Aside from wheat, other grains can also be used to make flour.  Corn flour, for example, is milled from whole corn kernels. It is different from cornstarch, which only uses parts of the kernel. Finely ground corn flour can be used for breading or, when combined with other flours, for baking breads and other pastries.


These mini corn muffins are great as a snack or as a side dish!


6 Self-rising Flour


Use for: muffins, cupcakes, pancakes


Self-rising flour is all-purpose flour combined with salt and a leavening agent such as baking powder. You can use it in place of all-purpose flour, but make sure to lessen the amount of salt and baking powder in the recipe. Use it when making muffins, cupcakes, and pancakes.




7 Rice Flour


Use for: kakanin, mochi, bibingka


Widely popular in Asian cooking, rice flour is the fine powder made out of ground white rice. It can be used in baking flat breads and cakes, or as a thickener for sauces. When made from high-starch short-grain rice, it becomes glutinous, and can be used to make Asian sweet treats like mochi and bibingka.


More from
You can make fluffy bibingka in a regular oven.



More from
Everything you wanted to know-from equipment, baking essentials, and recipes-to get you started in the kitchen!

More from
Our readers gave us some awesome baking tips!


Article originally published in the October 2016 issue of Yummy magazine. Minor edits have been made by editors.

Comments. Join the discussion below!

What Exactly Is an Espresso and How Can You Drink It?

Espresso shots are the base of many coffee drinks.

Pandesal French Toast Recipe

Turn pandesal into crisp, buttery French toast.

Can You "KonMari" Your Kitchen? We Have 6 Tips to Help You Declutter

Overwhelmed by a cluttered countertop, an overstuffed fridge, and a cabinet full of plastic containers?

Champorado Oatmeal Recipe

Have you ever had champorado oatmeal?
Load More