Gluten-free dieters, rejoice! This list is for you as well as others looking for a healthier alternative to white flour, a relatively nutritionally-devoid and uninspired ingredient. Almond meal or almond flour is a common ingredient in Paleo and gluten-free diets, but it actually makes for a wonderful addition to everyone’s diet. It is dense with nutrition and carries a deep nutty and slightly sweet overtone that does wonders to many a sweet and savory dish. Here are 10 almond meal recipes that you don't want to miss this season.
Before we get into the almond meal recipes, let’s consider why almond meal is so fabulous to begin with. About one-quarter cup of almond flour/meal contains 160 calories, 3 grams of dietary fiber, 6 grams of protein, and 6 percent of the RDA of both calcium and iron. While it is relatively high in fat – 12 grams per one-fourth cup serving – it is very low in carbohydrates, with only 6 grams per a one-quarter cup serving. Its protein levels are quite high, especially compared to traditional flour.
10 Almond Meal Recipes
1. Vegan Gingersnap Cookies
Gingersnap cookies are light and generally go down quick and easy – who ever stops at just one? With this vegan and gluten-free gingersnaps cookie recipe, you embrace coconut oil, maple syrup, and almond meal in place of butter, sugar, and white flour. Win, win, and win.
2. Pizza Margherita
Could this recipe be any more doable? Pizza Margherita just got a lot less indulgent and a lot more interesting! This recipe for pizza margherita combines almond flour with a ton of spices and eggs, resulting in a crispy crust dreams are made of.
3. Olive Oil and Polenta Cake
I love that this olive oil and polenta cake recipe involves olive oil – it subdues the sweetness usually inherent in cake and makes the resulting dessert something that interests just about every palate. It’s citrus and almond overtones offer a complexity that ultimately satisfies all of your taste buds – not just the sweet tooth.
4. Hanukkah Chocolate Olive Gelt Cookies
If you are celebrating Hanukkah, these chocolate olive Gelt cookies are a must on your menu. This recipe had me at chocolate.
5. Dessert Pastry
Considering the amount of pies that will be produced over the next few months, it is a good idea to consider healthier options, especially when it comes to the pastry crust. The crust is just a vessel for the pie itself, and as long as it stays buttery and crisp, you can’t go wrong. This gluten-free dessert pastry is made with corn, oat, and almond flours and should be your go-to pastry for the rest of the holiday season.
6. Orange Apricot Scones
This recipe sells itself. If you’ve never made scones before, now is the time to start. Generally, they are quite heavy, with white flour and butter to their credit. However, this recipe for orange apricot scones takes out the butter and white flour elements and hones in on almond flour and grapeseed oil. A touch of orange keeps things light and interesting, making these scones the perfect brunch side nosh.
7. Apple Cake
Would a holiday recipe list be complete without apple cake? This Swedish-inspired apple cake recipe is deliciously simple and a delight for all your senses. Make sure to use almond meal and almond extract when the recipe suggests so.
8. Almond Flour Meatloaf
Trust me on this one. What could make meatloaf heartier than it already is? The answer is almond meal. In this meatloaf recipe, almond flour shows its versatility, helping to hold together the loaf and give it that iconic moist, dense texture it deserves.
9. Raw Vegan Linzer Cookies Recipe
Almond flour acts as the base of these linzer cookies. Without a touch of white flour, sugar, or dairy in sight, these cookies fuel your body with energy and don’t even require baking!
10. Silver Dollar Pancakes
Pancakes no longer have to be part of an overindulgent weekend breakfast meal. With almond flour at its center, this recipe for silver dollar pancakes keeps it vegan, gluten-free, and paleo-friendly! Other star ingredients include agave nectar and coconut oil. You can always replace the agave nectar with maple syrup if you are avoiding agave.
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Meatloaf with Barbecue Sauce Image from Shutterstock