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Chestnut vs almond vs tapioca vs coconut flours

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 11, 2012 at 1:11 PM

I recently made a pancake/ flatbread thing for my 18 month old daughter using ground roasted chestnuts ( not water chestnuts) and egg yolks, which she loved. I don't know anything about chestnuts. Are they paleo? Ok to give to a baby on fairly regular basis? It is a kinda bread substitute for her that I can add veggies to as well. Also, I notice loads of paleo people make baked goods from almond flour for the kiddies. Isnt this too much phytic acid for children to have regularly? So I guess what I am trying to ask is, what is the best flour to use for a child - coconut, tapioca, almond or chestnut?Thanks.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on July 12, 2012
at 05:17 PM

Sally, the flour is completely edible and is a far better alternative to grain flours or corn starch (which is most likely from GMO corn). It is no less Paleo than the artichoke that must be steamed to make it edible.

58c33847c5b7ecbf6572075df2cdd002

(866)

on July 12, 2012
at 02:49 PM

Sally - yes, flour would be properly prepared Mazer - my understanding was that one of the ways to define "Paleo diet" is limiting yourself to foods that can safely be eaten in its raw, unprocessed state. Under that definition, cassava root is not Paleo.

59536c2e6df721b050e10b7a87143481

(58)

on July 12, 2012
at 10:41 AM

How can it be prepared properly? Is it prepared properly as a flour?

98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

(24286)

on July 12, 2012
at 02:48 AM

I don't think so Sally. Unless there are some issues you feel you need to address with carb restriction I wouldn't. I think the risk in doing all of this baking is that the child doesn't understand that whole foods are really the basis of the diet not bakery stuff even if healthy. As long as the child is getting plenty of fresh produce and the other basics I think your plan sound great.

Ee70ee808f748374744404a00e1c22ed

(1163)

on July 11, 2012
at 06:23 PM

Why does the need for proper preparation disqualify cassava? As far as I'm concerned, it's a clean source of starchy carbs. Besides- one of the reasons cassava is such a staple food is that historically, humans have been the only creatures able to process the root enough to make it edible.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on July 11, 2012
at 02:47 PM

Sally, I don't restrict the carbs for my almost 8-year-old. He eats muffins made with coconut flour, a Brazilian cheese bread made with tapioca flour, almonds and pistachios on occasion, organic sprouted corn tortillas, kefir, etc. He doesn't eat any frankenfood, eats lots of fresh fruits and veggies, and noshes on meat. He's healthier than he ever was on SAD.

59536c2e6df721b050e10b7a87143481

(58)

on July 11, 2012
at 01:56 PM

thanks, looks like a great recipe!

59536c2e6df721b050e10b7a87143481

(58)

on July 11, 2012
at 01:51 PM

If they are supposedly good starches/carbs like sweet potato, plantain, tapioca, chestnut etc can a child have as much as they like or not? Sorry, but I am fairly new to this :)

59536c2e6df721b050e10b7a87143481

(58)

on July 11, 2012
at 01:48 PM

Thanks for reply. Do I need to worry about carbs for children?

59536c2e6df721b050e10b7a87143481

(58)

on July 11, 2012
at 01:22 PM

Also, what about macadamia nut flour?

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4 Answers

1
D8612a7c536e74f9855b70d8e97919b5

(1042)

on July 11, 2012
at 02:30 PM

Chestnut flour is definitely Paleo. It is higher in carbs, but I do not see that as a negative, especially for a child. Tapioca is also good (made from cassava, a tuber) and starchy.

I would limit almond flour to occasional indulgences due to fact that you're cooking a ground-up high omega-6 food. Fine in moderation, but definitely not a suitable staple.

I think coconut flour is great too. It is lower in carbs, most of which are from fiber.

1
707342e3cb97e0fc088917919a154b8a

on July 11, 2012
at 01:41 PM

Not a direct answer to your question-- but rather than using any kind of flour at all, you can use overly ripe bananas and eggs to make pancakes-- or use just cream cheese and eggs to make a pancake like bread (recipe found here: www.livefabuLESS.com/quickbread (I've also made them in muffin tins to be more like a biscuit)

59536c2e6df721b050e10b7a87143481

(58)

on July 11, 2012
at 01:56 PM

thanks, looks like a great recipe!

0
98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

on July 11, 2012
at 01:41 PM

I'm not sure any of these are necessarily better or worse than the others. First it depends on the individual and their dietary needs as to which might be a better choice. But different applications call for different flours too so it's definitely a "dish dependent" choice as well. I keep several different flours on hand and use them as needed.

I use chestnut flour for polenta but haven't experimented with it beyond that. It's particularly high in carbs so may not be well-suited for some.

If you are concerned about too much phytic acid you can get sprouted nut flours online pretty easily.

59536c2e6df721b050e10b7a87143481

(58)

on July 11, 2012
at 01:48 PM

Thanks for reply. Do I need to worry about carbs for children?

59536c2e6df721b050e10b7a87143481

(58)

on July 11, 2012
at 01:51 PM

If they are supposedly good starches/carbs like sweet potato, plantain, tapioca, chestnut etc can a child have as much as they like or not? Sorry, but I am fairly new to this :)

98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

(24286)

on July 12, 2012
at 02:48 AM

I don't think so Sally. Unless there are some issues you feel you need to address with carb restriction I wouldn't. I think the risk in doing all of this baking is that the child doesn't understand that whole foods are really the basis of the diet not bakery stuff even if healthy. As long as the child is getting plenty of fresh produce and the other basics I think your plan sound great.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on July 11, 2012
at 02:47 PM

Sally, I don't restrict the carbs for my almost 8-year-old. He eats muffins made with coconut flour, a Brazilian cheese bread made with tapioca flour, almonds and pistachios on occasion, organic sprouted corn tortillas, kefir, etc. He doesn't eat any frankenfood, eats lots of fresh fruits and veggies, and noshes on meat. He's healthier than he ever was on SAD.

-1
58c33847c5b7ecbf6572075df2cdd002

on July 11, 2012
at 05:08 PM

Tapioca flour is made from cassava root. Cassava root is toxic if not prepared properly (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cassava). So I would say it is not Paleo. That being said, I do use it occasionally when I "cheat" by having my burger on a gluten-free bun or make cassava bread.

Coconut, almond, chestnut and macadamia flours would all be considered Paleo and could be used occasionally for treats and breading, etc.

Ee70ee808f748374744404a00e1c22ed

(1163)

on July 11, 2012
at 06:23 PM

Why does the need for proper preparation disqualify cassava? As far as I'm concerned, it's a clean source of starchy carbs. Besides- one of the reasons cassava is such a staple food is that historically, humans have been the only creatures able to process the root enough to make it edible.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on July 12, 2012
at 05:17 PM

Sally, the flour is completely edible and is a far better alternative to grain flours or corn starch (which is most likely from GMO corn). It is no less Paleo than the artichoke that must be steamed to make it edible.

58c33847c5b7ecbf6572075df2cdd002

(866)

on July 12, 2012
at 02:49 PM

Sally - yes, flour would be properly prepared Mazer - my understanding was that one of the ways to define "Paleo diet" is limiting yourself to foods that can safely be eaten in its raw, unprocessed state. Under that definition, cassava root is not Paleo.

59536c2e6df721b050e10b7a87143481

(58)

on July 12, 2012
at 10:41 AM

How can it be prepared properly? Is it prepared properly as a flour?

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