Both corn flour and cornmeal are made out of ground corn, although both have different textures, nutrients and color. There are a few disparities between cornmeal and corn flour terms and people sometimes use them interchangeably. However, this is greatly affected by the location.
In the US, cornmeal and corn flour are the same. Generally, corn flour is the finer version of cornmeal, as it has a finer texture. In the UK, corn flour is also called cornstarch. However, in other areas, corn flour is totally different from cornstarch.
Corn Flour Vs. Cornmeal
What Is Corn Flour?
Corn flour is made from the ground corn kernels of white, yellow or blue corn, which produce fine powder. The white color from white corn is usually seen in Africa, while the yellow texture from yellow corn is common in the US, and the blue yellow flour comes from rare blue corn.
Commonly called cornstarch in the UK, it is used for sauce thickening, making bread, or breading items for frying. When you’re baking, you will have heavier bread if you use corn flour instead of wheat. For bread, you can use regular flour instead.
Cornstarch is generally gluten-free and preferred by people who want to have a protein diet. However, as it is entirely carbohydrate, it is considered to have little nutritional value.
What Are Health Benefits That Corn Flour Can Provide You?
- Sodium: Corn flour contains 6 mg of sodium. Having a low amount of sodium can prevent high blood pressure.
- Magnesium and Potassium: A cup of enriched yellow corn flour has 106 mg of magnesium and 300 mg of potassium. Both minerals are good for your blood circulation.
- Selenium: Corn flour contains 16 mg of selenium, which promotes the antioxidant activity of Vitamins C and E.
- Corn flour usually gives you a strong aftertaste when it is used in cooking. So it is not usually recommended that you use it as a thickener ingredient when making your soups or broths.
- The taste can be very strong and so it can destroy the flavor of the food you are preparing.
What Is Cornmeal?
Compared to corn flour, cornmeal has a coarse texture without the corn skin or germ. It is made from corn kernels that are ground into a course powder.
It is used for safe cooking and considered by Colorado State University Research as good for patients with celiac disease or people with a gluten intolerance, since it contains no gluten.
Cornmeal also provides more essential nutrients than corn flour does. It is used for making quick bread and bread with a cake-like texture. It is also used for dusting greased pans since it helps to stop the bread from sticking to the pan. Apart from this, it gives the crust of the bread a crunch and additional flavor. Corn meal is really recommended for these purposes. However, if you don’t have any, you use corn flour or any other regular flours as a substitute.
What Are The Health Benefits Of Cornmeal?
- Carbohydrates: Cornmeal contains a lot of carbohydrates, just like corn flour, since both are made from corn. One cup of cornmeal contains 94 grams of total carbohydrates (76 percent of corn’s caloric content). It also has fiber, a beneficial carbohydrate, which is good for people who are dieting.
- Iron: Cornmeal can boost your iron intake. One cup of cornmeal gives you 4.2 mg of iron.
- Phosphorus: Cornmeal provides your body with phosphorous, which helps to build up your DNA, develop your cell membranes and contributes to your body’s bone mineral tissue.
What To Know When Cooking With Cornmeal?
- You can use cornmeal to replace wheat flour in baking because it is finely ground and gives baked goods a super smooth, cake-like texture and a crunchier texture.
- Corn bread is also healthy and can be used in sandwiches, soup and anything else.
Although both contain health benefits for your body, there are significant differences between the two. Whether they are very good to use or not, depends entirely on your choice and preferences.
Here’s a summary of the similarities of corn meal and corn flour, and the differences between them:
- Corn flour is a more finely ground than cornmeal, but cornmeal is healthier.
- Corn flour gives soup a strong taste and so it’s not recommended that you use it in this way.
- Cornmeal provides more essential nutrients than corn flour.
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