Mesquite Flour, A Gluten Free Alternative!

Have you heard of mesquite flour?  If not, you’re about to learn about a new gluten free flour alternative!

Mesquite flour is a nutritious, gluten-free substitute to white flour!

Mesquite is a tree that is native to the Americas, especially the desert regions of northern Mexico, western South America, and southern United States. It is sturdy and drought-tolerant, and survives well in arid and semi-arid regions that receive little rainfall. Although it is considered a nuisance by ranchers because its roots often steal moisture from neighboring flora, the mesquite tree does have a saving grace: it produces highly nutritious seed pods which, in turn, make a flavorful flour that provides us with numerous health benefits.

Health Benefits of Mesquite Flour:

Gluten-free – Like buckwheat flour and coconut flour, mesquite flour (also called mesquite powder and mesquite meal) is gluten-free. This is a big plus for everyone, not just for people with Celiac disease or gluten intolerance, because gluten consumption has been linked to brain fog, fatigue, headaches, depression, bloating and gas, and much more. Indeed, in his popular 2011 book, Wheat Belly, Dr. William Davis proves that the gliadin protein contained in gluten polymers is a leading cause of weight gain. Therefore, we should welcome any substitutes to processed white flour, which is high in gluten.

Diabetic-friendly – Mesquite flour has a low glycemic index score of 25, which is in the same league as most fruits and vegetables. This means that it has little or no impact on blood sugar levels, largely because the source of its natural sweetness – fructose – doesn’t require insulin to be broken down. For this reason, mesquite flour is suitable for diabetic and pre-diabetic individuals.

High in protein – Mesquite flour is comprised of between 13 and 17 percent protein (depending on the quality), which is comparable to many famously protein-rich seeds such as sunflower seeds and sesame seeds. Moreover, it is a ‘complete’ protein, since it contains all eight essential amino acids. This makes the flour an excellent choice for bodybuilders, athletes, vegetarians, vegans, and anyone else who is seeking high-quality natural energy but doesn’t want to resort to refined carbohydrates.  

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Weight loss food – You can incorporate mesquite flour into a weight loss plan because, aside from being gluten-free and low in carbohydrates, it is also low in fat (three percent) and high in dietary fiber. Although fiber is best-known for improving regularity and treating constipation, it also encourages weight loss since it absorbs water from the large intestine, which helps us feel fuller for longer and discourages overeating.

Trace mineral content – Mesquite flour contains respectable levels of calcium, which is vital for maintaining healthy bones and teeth, and magnesium, which boosts hormone health and helps us to absorb calcium better. Additionally, it is rich in essential minerals like potassium, zinc, and iron, which keep our bodies functioning optimally.

Mesquite Flour Is Known As A Superfood

Vegans and vegetarians use mesquite flour in all sorts of ways in the kitchen. It’s like a low-glycemic flour that’s rich in protein and micro-nutrients. You can make healthy, low-glycemic breads, pancakes and tortillas out of it.   It bakes and mixes just like wheat flour, but obviously without the wheat allergens.

What Does Mesquite Flour Taste Like?

Mesquite flour has a sweet, nutty taste. It has a texture like wheat flour, but perhaps a bit more grainy. It’s about 17% protein, making it ideal for those who wish to avoid high-carbohydrate foods. It also has a significantly lower glycemic index than regular white flour… or even wheat flour, for that matter.

Incorporating Mesquite Powder in Your Diet:

Mesquite powder (or mesquite meal) is an excellent addition to smoothies, used in cooked or raw desserts, or stirred into food or drinks for extra flavor and nutrition.

1. Smoothies: Just a spoonful of this superfood powder adds a sweet, rich flavor to smoothies and shakes. Check out the smoothie recipes below or make your own combination using our green smoothie guide!

  • Pink Powerhouse Smoothie – packed with protein, fiber, potassium and iron, this pretty pink smoothie is a nutritional powerhouse in disguise!
  • Doesn’t Taste Green Smoothie – mesquite, cacao, spinach, berries and banana are a flavorful and nutritious combination!

2. Cooked Desserts: You can substitute up to half* the flour in a recipe with mesquite powder for added flavor and nutrition. Given mesquite’s naturally sweet flavor, you may also be able to reduce the amount of sugar or other sweetener used in baking.

Mesquite is also delicious used either in place of or alongside raw cacao/cocoa powder. The recipe below pairs these two superfoods for an extremely rich and flavorful frosting.

*Note: You may want to begin by substituting mesquite for ¼ of the flour in a given recipe and experiment with adding more, given that all flours have different properties.

3. Raw Desserts: Mesquite is also great in raw desserts. Although it can be used as a flour in baking, unlike most flours, it does not require cooking to taste great! Mesquite powder once again adds flavor, but also helps raw cookies, balls, and crusts bind together, as in the recipe below.

This raw cookie recipe is a total superfood treat, combining mesquite with raw cacao powder and goji berries – two of the most nutritious foods on the planet!

Where Do You Buy Mesquite Flour?

You can purchase mesquite flour online at a variety of websites.  Here are a few:

Mesquiteflour.com

Desert USA

Amazon

 

 

Sources for this article:

One Green Planet

Wheat Belly

Natural News

 

 

 

 

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