Glutinous Rice Flour Substitute: Three Gluten-Free Must-Tries

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Glutinous rice in black bowl with text "glutinous rice flour substitute"

So you got yourself in a sticky situation, huh? 

You’re feeling the culinary juices brewing right now, but lo and behold, you’re out of glutinous rice flour. 

There goes a part of your excitement down the drain. There goes the homemade mochi you’ve been craving (dreaming) since last week. 

But hey, cheer up!

It also happens that you’ve been ignoring some glutinous rice substitutes in your cupboard. 

This must be a blessing in disguise, then. 

After all, glutinous rice can be elusive when you least expect it. Exhibit A: You, reading this article to find substitutes.

The Sticky Substitutes 

Glutinous rice flour and tapioca starch in coconut shells with coconut leaves background.

There are a lot of potential glutinous rice flour substitutes out there. Listing them all would be time-consuming. 

So, let’s just stick to the “best” three shall we? 

Tapioca Flour

First up is a cassava root champion hailing all the way from South America. 

Tapioca flour outperforms every other glutinous rice flour substitute when it comes to chewiness. 

Not only does it work wonders in desserts (cookies!), but it’s also incredibly useful in making savory dishes, sauces and soups.  

Don’t believe me? 


  • 1 cup of tapioca flour
  • ½ cup of almond flour
  • ½ cup of packed light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup of unsalted butter
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp of baking soda
  • ¼ tsp of salt
  • ½ cup of chocolate chips


  • Mixing bowls
  • Electric mixer
  • Spatula
  • Baking sheet
  • Parchment paper
  • Measuring cups and spoons


  1. Preheat the oven to 175°C and place parchment paper in a baking sheet.
  2. Whisk tapioca flour, almond flour, banking soda, and salt together in a large bowl.
  3. Mix the butter and brown sugar in another bowl using an electric mixer until everything’s light and fluffy. 
  4. Add the egg and vanilla extract to the resulting mixture. Make sure to beat using medium speed until everything’s well combined. 
  5. Combine the dry ingredients from the first bowl to the wet ones in the second bowl. 
  6. Using a spatula, fold in the chocolate chips. 
  7. Portion the dough onto your baking sheet with enough space to allow expansion during baking. 
  8. Bake for 10-12 minutes or just until the edges turn golden brown and the center slightly gooey. 
  9. Allow the cookies to cool in the baking sheet for a few minutes before serving. 

Almond Flour

Almond nuts and flour.

Almond flour manages to clinch a spot for itself as a glutinous rice substitute because of its nutritious and nutty nature. 

We can’t also forget its lighter and airier texture that makes for delicate pancakes and muffins.


  • ½ cup of almond flour
  • ¼ tsp of baking powder
  • ¼ tsp of salt
  • 1 large egg
  • ⅓ cup of unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 tbsp of maple syrup
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • Extra virgin olive oil


  • Mixing bowls
  • Whisk
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Non-stick pan
  • Spatula


  1. Whisk together the almond flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. 
  2. In another bowl, whisk the egg, almond milk, maple syrup, and vanilla extract together. 
  3. Combine the wet and dry ingredients and whisk away until just combined. 
  4. Heat your non-stick pan over medium fire. Add some olive oil just to coat the pan.
  5. Pour ¼ cup portions of batter. Make sure to leave enough space for spreading. 
  6. Cook for 2-3 minutes per side or just until the surface bubbles.
  7. Serve with toppings like fruits, maple syrup, and whipped cream. 

Brown Rice Flour

Brown rice flour in white bowl placed above the raw brown rice.

But we’re mixing it with tapioca flour. 

Because sometimes, my dear foodies, two is better than one. 

Brown rice flour is made from whole brown rice grains. This type likely came to be as a way to utilize all the parts of a rice kennel. 

Mix it with tapioca flour and you’re sure to achieve the textures of famous Asian cuisine. 


  • ¾ cup of tapioca and brown rice flour blend
  • ½ cup of boiling water
  • 1 tbsp of cold water
  • ½ tsp of salt
  • Your chosen dumpling filling (mine’s either ground pork with veggies or shredded chicken with shiitake mushrooms)


  • Large bowl
  • Fork
  • Rolling pin
  • Dumpling cutter
  • Large pot
  • Steamer basket
  • Spatula


  1. Combine the flour duo with the salt in a large bowl. Add the boiling water and stir with a fork to remove any crumbly forms.
  2. Add 1 tbsp of cold water at a time just until the dough becomes pliable. 
  3. Knead for a few minutes on a floured surface. Cover and let it rest for 10 minutes after. 
  4. Divide the dough into two. Roll out each portion into a ⅛ inch thick sheet. 
  5. Use the dumpling cutter (glass also works) to cut circles. 
  6. Place a spoonful of your filling on the center of each circle. 
  7. Moisten the edges with water and fold the dough until it covers the filling securely in a half moon shape. Pinch the edges to seal and repeat for the remaining doughs.
  8. Fill a steamer basket with water and bring to a boil. Place the dumplings inside with enough space in between them and steam for 10-12 minutes.
  9. Serve with a dipping sauce like soy sauce with vinegar. 

Out of the Sticky Situation

Your kitchen may be out of glutinous rice flour, but that shouldn’t stop you from making these heavenly culinary creations. 

Don’t let any missing ingredient stop you from unleashing the master chef within.

There’s always a glutinous rice flour substitute to turn to. 

Go and make gluten-free dishes!

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