The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Carbalose Flour Bread Suggestions?


Carbalose Flour Bread Suggestions?

Hi there,

I'm new to this forum and I know that the bulk of postings will deal with "traditional flour".  However, I have been on a Low Carb lifestyle for well over a year now, and have lost significant weight.  The only thing that I really miss from time to time is BREAD!  I've tried buying "low carb" or "keto" breads online only to find that they taste HORRIBLE!

I recently discovered Carbalose Flour (NOT Carbquick) which is a wheat flour that has had 90% of the carbohydrates removed.  Unfortunately, there are very few recipes on the Internet on baking with this product.  I found a "bread machine" recipe that seems to work OK, but I really want to be able to bake traditional loaves with my own two hands.  

I tried the "bread machine" recipe which rendered a very dense loaf that didn't rise sufficiently enough to make a sandwich-type loaf.  From what I understand (and I am definitely a NOVICE bread baker) the problem is that Carbalose has a 31% protein count which is about double of even strong bread flour.  The loaf that I experimented with tasted great, but I wish I could refine the recipe and/or techniques.  Here's the recipe and what I did with it:

3 cups Carbalose flour (I prefer using grams, but the recipe didn't come that way), 1/2 tsp. salt, 2 tsp. dry active yeast, 2 Tblsp. sugar, 1 cup warm water, 1/4 cup oil (I used avocado), 3 tsp. vital wheat gluten, 1/2 tsp. guar gum, 1 packet Splenda (offsets a characteristic taste of Carbalose flour). I proofed the yeast in the water/sugar mix.  I then added the dry ingredients first, and added the oil last.  I used my KitchenAid stand mixer to knead the dough for about 5 minutes on slow speed until the dough was fairly smooth.  I covered it and allowed a 90 minute rise which resulted in double the size.  I punched down the dough, shaped it into a loaf pan and allowed to rise for another 60 minutes.  I then baked it at 350° F (convection) with a small bowl of hot water in the oven for about 45 minutes.

From what I've researched (and I could be completely wrong about this), the crust on Carbalose bread is quite hard which affects the "rise" in the oven???  When I proofed the dough, it seemed to rise okay, just like traditional flour.  It's just the bake that seemed to lose the rise that you get in traditional flours.  I searched the Internet on how to bake with high protein flours, but it seems that even bread flour only gets to about 15% protein.

I hope there are some professional bakers out there who can give me some tips on how to deal with this.  Please understand, I LOVE traditional flour and I often bake things to give away to friends and neighbors.  But I'm committed to my dietary lifestyle and simple carbohydrates are deadly to my particular health issues.

Any suggestions for "tweaking" the ingredients and/or bread making process would be greatly appreciated.  Admittedly, although I love to bake, I have never had good luck with bread making even with traditional flour, so this is a major challenge for me.

Thank you in advance for any tips :)


clevins's picture

My initial thoughts are 1) did you score the loaf? Doing so might allow some expansion and 2) Did you use steam in the oven or no?


Also, don't judge rises by time, but by how the dough rises. Too many recipes give a time but don't remind us that they're usually proofing at 75F+ and if your kitchen is at, say, 68F the proofing time will be much longer. 

Another thought is to try subbing out some of the Carbolose for a low protein flour, something like a pastry flour to try to bring the protein content down. I get that you want to go low carb, but it might be something to experiment with... say move from 3 cups to 2 and 1 cup of pastry flour. 

giralua's picture

I added MUCH more gluten.  My recipe (today's experiment, anyway) used 3 cups Carbalose, ⅔ cup gluten, no guar, ½ tbsp salt, 1 tbsp baking powder, no sweetener, and 2 cups of sourdough sponge.  I've been feeding my sourdough culture for a couple of weeks, and last night I added enough Carbalose and boiled water to it to make a couple of cups of goo.  I let it stand overnight and in the morning it was lively enough to go ahead with.  I kneaded it with the repeated-fold-and-pound method.  Just one rise (no punching it down).  I like the results.  The taste become much less odd after cooling.  Still not as good as all-flour recipes, but I'll keep tweaking.

Boxerbabe's picture

I am just getting into using carbalose and like you am doing it to reduce carbs.  Over at the Netrition website where it is sold I read all the reviews to get an idea of how it works.  Lots of comments from users about doubling leaveners: yeast, baking soda and baking powder.  Some also recommended the addition of 1tsp of vital wheat gluten for each cup of carbalose flour in bread reci[es.  Most have to watch the amount of liquids, it seems to need more that what might be called for in a traditional recipe.  Folks seem to go for a certain consistency.  Lots of experimentation going on. Hope this helps, I'm right behind you on the learning curve!