Homemade Oat Flour--Why You Need This In Your Life

Oat flour is a must to have on hand for every frugal gluten-free kitchen, but when you make homemade oat flour yourself, you can save even more money. Once you see how easy it is to make, you'll never think about buying it again, and once you bake with it, you'll always want to have it on hand.

homemade oat flour in a jar with a wooden spoon

Homemade oat flour only takes minutes to blend up a batch, and it adds a rich sweet nutty flavor, moistness, and a fluffy texture that you will love in all of your gluten-free goodies.

I’ve been eating gluten-free and dairy-free for a long time — over 15 years, actually! In that time, I’ve done a lot of experimenting with gluten-free baking, so I know it can get a little frustrating and expensive.

But don’t worry… I’m all about saving money and making things healthy, but doing it the easy way.

That’s why today I'm sharing how to make oat flour right at home! Oat flour is a nutritious whole grain flour that is super simple to make and perfect for all of your gluten-free baking.

Blending up a batch only takes minutes, and the deliciously sweet, nutty (and "oat-ey") flavor plus its fluffy (yet a tad "sticky") texture adds so much to your baked goods -- I highly recommend it!

Why Should You Make This?

Variety

If you use too much of one grain (or any food, for that matter), you run the risk of becoming sensitive to it. So if you aren't using oat flour now, consider adding it to your diet. The more varied your diet, the better in my book.

Second, when you use a variety of grains in gluten-free baked goods, it makes the finished product taste better. The same goes for using low-carb sweeteners like stevia.

Ease of Making

Most gluten-free flours (and pretty much all flours) require a grain grinder or high-speed blender like a Vitamix. But not the humble oat flour!

You can make oat flour in a regular blender or even a food processor. It only takes a minute, so if you run out, you can easily whip up some more.

Taste

Oat flour simply tastes great. It’s a little heavier than most flours, but it’s also sweeter and nuttier. It adds something really special to gluten-free (and even non gluten-free) baked goods.

Cost

Finally, since oats are quite inexpensive compared to other gluten-free grains, it’s super cost-effective to make oat flour. It’s one of my favorite ways to keep my gluten-free baking expenses down.

You'll save almost 50% of the cost by making your own oat flour. That's pretty good in my book!

homemade oat flour in a white bowl

Is Oat Flour Gluten-Free?

Technically, all oats and oat flour should be gluten-free. However, the answer to this question is a little more complicated and it's due to cross-contamination.

There can be cross contamination of wheat and oats (and some other gluten-grains) on farms, on machinery, and in processing plants. So, if you're highly sensitive to gluten, you’ll want to make sure the oats you’re buying are certified gluten-free. 

When my boys were younger, we used to buy oats in bulk from a company that did regular testing for gluten levels so we used non-GF oats due to their test results being consistently below 20 ppm. Sadly, I am not aware of any companies that do this any longer.

Also, know that there have been concerns about some GF oats companies not being as careful as they should. However, one company I know is extremely careful is the GF Harvest Oat Company. They are extremely rigorous about their gluten-free status, so you can shop there with confidence.

One other thing to note is that about 10-15% of people with celiac disease or gluten intolerance are also sensitive to avenin, a protein found in oats. For anyone with this sensitivity, oat flour isn't a suitable option.

I am a big believer in listening to your body and knowing that one size typically does not fit all.

Can You Substitute Oat Flour For Wheat Flour?

Typically, substituting oat flour 1 for 1 for wheat flour is not a good idea. The textures and requirements of the two flours are just too different. 

I recommend looking for baking recipes that specifically call for oat flour. Or, you can use it in smaller amounts with other regular or gluten-free flours as follows.

However, some say that you can use oat flour only in a recipe but that you need to use more oat flour by volume. One figure I saw online was to use 1.42 times the volume of wheat flour in oat flour for the recipe.

How To Use Oat Flour

There are lots of different thoughts about how to use oat flour in your gluten-free baking.

Some say that because oat flour is quite dense, that you should only use up to 25% of the flour in your gluten-free (or non GF) flour blend or your baked goods will be too heavy.

Others say that you can substitute 1 1/3 cups oat flour for all purpose or whole grain or gluten-free flours.

I think it depends on the recipe.

I haven't tried a lot of recipes substituting all oat flour for the flour that's called for, but it has worked for some recipes and sometimes the result is amazing.

These gluten-free cinnamon roll cookies is one of those recipes. The oat flour version so good, you might not want to make them using any other flour, once you try it that way.

I love using oat flour in pancakes, muffins, brownies, and cupcakes. It’s especially perfect for oatmeal cookies, as it gives them a thick and chewy texture. It’s also great for dusting pans to prevent bread dough from sticking.

How To Make

  • Place old-fashioned, steel-cut, or quick-cooking oats in a blender or food processor, filling it up to at most halfway. In a blender, about 1/3 of the way is typically best.
  • Process until the oats turn into a fine flour
  • Pause to scrape down the sides and stir as necessary
  • The final consistency should feel like a powder, not granulated. If you feel grains or the texture feels like sand, continue processing until the resulting product is completely smooth.
  • If you want to make sure that there are no larger particles in your flour, sift with a fine mesh sieve and discard the remainder or put in another container for future grinding.
collage of rolled oats and partially ground oat flour in food processor
Process image of oats in a food processor and sifting oats in a bowl
Processing Oats in Food Processor and Sifting Oat Flour
collage of rolled oats in blender and oat flour in blender
Making Oat Flour in a Vitamix Blender

FAQs

How Much Flour Will Oats Yield When Ground?

When grinding old fashioned or quick oats, you’ll end up with slightly less flour than oats. For example, if you want 1 cup of oat flour, you’ll want to grind about 1¼ or 1½ cups of oats, and 1 cup of oats will yield about 3/4 cup of oat flour.

homemade oat flour in a jar with a wooden spoon

How Should You Store Oat Flour?

Place in an airtight container or resealable freezer bag. Oat flour will last for up to 3 months in a cool pantry, 5-6 months in the refrigerator, or up to a year in the freezer. Whole grain flours can spoil more easily because of the oils in the grains, so I personally recommend storing in the refrigerator or freezer.

What Kind of Oats Can You Use to Make Oat Flour?

You can use old-fashioned (also called whole rolled), steel cut, or quick cooking oats.

What Equipment Do You Need to Make Oat Flour?

While you don't need a high-speed blender for this, you can use one if you like. However, a regular blender or food processor works great!

Just make sure you add at least 2 cups of oats to either to get traction on the blades. If the oats aren’t grinding, you may need to add more. For a high speed or other blender, filling to about 1/3 of the way is typically best, and for a food processor, you can typically fill it to about the halfway point.

homemade oat flour in a zippered plastic bag

Should You Use Only Organic Oats?

While this is a personal choice, I recommend using only organic oats if you can afford it, which is why I linked to them throughout this post. Conventional oats are known to have quite a bit of glyphosate sprayed on them, which I'm not a fan of especially since it is known to cause gut damage. (source)

Organic oats may have some glyphosate residue, but not nearly as much as conventional.

Pinterest collage for How To Make Oat Flour post
homemade oat flour in a jar with a wooden spoon

Homemade Oat Flour

Oat flour is a frugal and delicious addition to all your gluten-free baking. Learn how to make oat flour and how to use it with these simple instructions.
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Course: Dressings, Seasonings, etc.
Cuisine: Gluten-Free, Sugar-Free, Vegan
Keyword: homemade oat flour

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Place oats in a blender or food processor. If using a food processor, add only up to the halfway mark, and for a blender, add to about one-third full at most.
  • Process until the oats turn into a fine flour.
  • Pause to scrape down the sides and stir as necessary.
  • If you want to make sure that there are no larger particles in your flour, sift with a fine mesh sieve and discard the remainder or put in another container for future grinding.

Notes

The final consistency of the oat flour should feel like a powder rather than granulated. If you feel grains or the texture feels like sand, continue processing until it's a smooth powder.

Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is merely an approximation. Optional ingredients are not included and when there is an alternative, the primary ingredient is typically used. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the nutritional information given for any recipe on this site. Erythritol carbs are not included in carb counts since they have been shown not to impact blood sugar. Net carbs are the total carbs minus fiber.

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