Before working at a gluten-free bakery, I didn't know much about the difference between almond and wheat flour. So, obviously, I made it my mission to remedy myself of ignorance and learn a thing or two about “almond flour vs wheat flour.” Here are 9 ways they are definitely not the same. 

1. It's about the nut. 

nut, almond, peanut
Alyssa Cronin

Almond flour is composed of exactly what you probably  guessed: almonds. Unlike wheat flour which consists of grounded wheat kernel, almond flour is a fine mixture of ground blanched almonds.

#SpoonTip: if you're an almond lover, eat gluten-free, or just want to have some fun in the kitchen, here's how to make your own almond flour. 

2. Gluten's the key. 

flour, dough, dairy product
Photo courtesy of Chef Cait

According to the owner of Epiphany Gluten-Free Bakery, one of the main differences between almond flour and wheat flour is gluten: a protein that keeps dough stretchy and baked goods fluffy. For this reason, wheat is often better for bread and pizza dough (although Epiphany's pizza crust will make you question everything) while almond works best for things like cakes and pie crusts. 

3. Count those calories.

flour, dough, bread, wheat, pastry, sweet, cake, cereal
Spoon Csu

In this battle between “almond flour vs. wheat flour,” we come to a crossroads. Although almond flour has fewer carbs than wheat flour, it has a higher dose of fat (mostly healthy) and therefore more calories. However, it's important to know that calories aren't everything when it comes to nutrition, since wheat flour is oftentimes very processed and can lead to spikes in insulin levels. Not great. 

4. Look at the label. 

beer, wine
Jessica Peyton

Almondflour is abundant in fiber and antioxidants like Vitamin E while wheat contains more phytic acid—an anti-nutrient that decreases the absorption of nutrients from foods in the body. So although wheat has its health benefits, almond flour won this round fo' sho. 

5. It's about taste.

chocolate, sweet, cream, cake, pastry, candy, waffle
Aoife Leogue

While almond flour has a nutty taste that pairs well with most baked goods and pastries, wheat flour is more neutral and can work in almost any recipe without altering the taste. So although you might like that nutty taste (and hopefully aren't allergic to gluten), you might tally a point to #teamwheat for versatility reasons. 

6. Check your blood sugar. 

coffee, milk, cream, chocolate, tea, sweet
Caroline Liu

With the fat, fiber and unusually high amount of magnesium in almond flour, you'd be surprised how it can control blood sugar and improve insulin function. Since the higher carb wheat flour spikes sugar levels, you might be less likely to fall asleep in class with an almond flour morning muffin.

8. Know your body.

dough, flour, pastry, cookie
Emma Noyes

The rise of "gluten-free" wasn't an accident. With more people struggling with health issues like celiac disease and wheat intolerance, food experts created meals with flour alternatives like almond flour in an attempt to provide solutions for everyone to enjoy what they eat.

If you're gluten-intolerant, or are cutting back on the gluten, rest assured that you can still make pancakes and eat them too.  

9. It's about you. 

toast, wheat, bread, cereal, rye, flour, sandwich, wheat bread
Christin Urso

In the end, it's really up to you. If you prefer the taste and texture of wheat flour, go for it. If you care that almond flour won this battle, then get ready to reap the benefits. Both have their pros and cons, but ultimately it's best to appreciate the differences.