If you don’t know the difference, potato flour and potato starch can both look and seem quite similar.
But when you start to look at the differences and consider potato flour vs potato starch, you start to realize that they actually are completely different. Here’s the lowdown.
Is potato starch the same as potato flour?
No. Absolutely not. Potato starch is completely different from potato flour. The differences are below:
Potato flour is a flour made from whole potatoes, sometimes even including the peel. Cooked or raw potatoes are left to dry out, then ground into flour, resulting in a dense cream colored flour that has a defined potato flavoring.
Because potato flour is so dense and holds and absorbs fluids incredibly well, it’s generally recommended to be used in small amounts. Using too much potato flour results in heavy, solid food, which might be too dense to cook right through.
Generally, potato flour is good for use in savory rolls and other bread, as well as filling, hearty, even stodgy baked goods. Potato flour is also great for keeping recipes together, acting like gums or fats. Just be careful not to overuse it.
Unlike potato flour, potato starch is much lighter, white, with a fluffy texture. You might hear it called potato starch flour, but this is a misnomer. Potato flour is completely different, as we just demonstrated.
Made from the starch of peeled potatoes, potato starch has no potato flavor, which makes it a much better option for baked goods that have a specific taste, as well as most other recipes. Because it gelatinizes at a lower temperature than corn starch, potato starch is also an excellent bulking agent in gluten-free baking powder.
Potato starch is also regularly used as a gluten-free thickener for gravies or sauces. Just be sure not to boil anything after you add potato starch because that will prevent it from thickening anymore.
Followers of the paleo diet also favor potato starch because it acts like fiber in the body, which promotes good gut health.
Potato starch vs potato flour
- Potato flour is thick, yellowed and dense.
- Potato starch is light, fluffy and white.
- Potato flour tastes heavily of potatoes
- Potato starch has no flavor
- Potato flour is generally used for heavy, dense baking, like Italian bread, sourdough bread, and loaf cakes. It can also be used in thick soups and other baked goods.
- Potato starch can be used in any standard types of baking. It is also regularly used as a gluten-free alternative to cornstarch as a thickening agent.
- Potato starch: Yes
- Potato flour: Yes
Which one should you choose?
In general, potato starch is far more useful in the kitchen than potato flour. Potato starch can be used for almost anything that you would use cornflour or other flours for in your gluten-free recipes, and the fact that it has no flavor means that you never have to worry about adding it in existing recipes.
Potato flour, on the other hand, lends itself to more specific uses. It’s a helpful thing to have, but I would never call it an essential part of any kitchen.
If you’re going gluten-free and you’re only grabbing the one, make sure you get potato starch first. It’s far more versatile and you’ll see a lot more use from it.
Now you know the difference between potato flour vs potato starch, choose which one is best for the dish that you want to prepare.