Are you looking for a xanthan gum substitute? Xanthan gum is a very versatile component that can be used in a wide variety of products. Cookies and toothpaste contain xanthan gum. Weird, right? But that is true!
However, have you ever come across a recipe where you need xanthan gum and don’t have it with you? I have, and that’s how I started my hunt and found these incredible xanthan gum substitutes.
Are you considering xanthan gum substitutes? What if I told you they’re in your pantry? Corn starch, egg white, gelatin, arrowroot flour, chia seed, and agar-agar are some of the best for xanthan gum.
Xanthan gum is an ingredient that we use almost every day yet sounds alien to us. Well, if you are someone like that, don’t worry. Before going to its substitute, let’s quickly meet this star ingredient.
Quick Peek: Xanthan Gum
Xanthan gum often remains used in gum. Is that any kind of gum? In this section, we are going to explore this ingredient. We will try to understand its flavor, texture, health benefits, etc.
What Is Xanthan Gum?
Xanthan gum is a stabilizer and thickening agent. It is a common ingredient in most canned foods. It is made from fermented sugar. Sugar is fermented with Xanthomonas campestris bacteria, hence its name, xanthan gum.
Xanthan gum is a common food additive and has multiple purposes. More than an additive, it’s also a binding agent. That’s why you usually find them in toothpaste and sauces.
Describing Xanthan Gum: Flavor And Texture
Xanthan gum has no flavor, and this is why it is so popular. It goes very well with anything and everything. You can just add it to your soups and sauces, and they will just thicken them without altering their taste.
Compared to other natural thickening agents like rice flour or cornstarch, xanthan gum is only needed in a very small amount to stabilize or thicken a huge quantity of food.
Uses Of Xanthan Gum
Xanthan gum is a recent addition to the food industry. Even though it was invented in 1968, it got approval only in the 1990s. In such a short time, it has almost become one of the most used ingredients in the food industry.
Xanthan gum has the ability to keep solid particles in suspension. This is very much needed for products like salad dressings and sauces. It also aids the mouthfeel of a food item by maintaining the good texture of the food.
Even though xanthan gum isn’t a common pantry item, it can be used for home-cooked soups and sauces. It will improve its texture and give it a thick consistency.
If you are someone who is following a gluten-free diet, xanthan gum can be of great help to you. As you know, gluten is something that helps to bind food items. Xanthan gum will do similar work, especially in baking, and will help you produce your favorite gluten-free cake!
Xanthan Gum On The Health Radar | Looking Through The Wellness Telescope
Xanthan gum is found in extremely small amounts in food. As a result, it does not significantly impact our health. Having said that, the health benefits of xanthan gum cannot be overlooked.
Xanthan gum is utilized in a variety of pharmaceuticals. It comes with a lot of health advantages. In people with diabetes, xanthan gum is beneficial in lowering blood sugar levels.
For those with Sjogren’s syndrome, it’s also utilized as a saliva substitute. It’s a disease in which the immune system destroys the body’s own healthy cells that create saliva and tears.
Constipation can also be relieved by xanthan gum. Xanthan gum has a laxative effect. It expands and clears the digestive tract as soon as it reaches the gut. As a result, it is clear to ensure a healthy gut and, as a result, general wellness.
According to studies, humans can consume 15g of xanthan gum per day. More than this, on the other hand, it may induce digestive difficulties such as flatulence and make you bloat.
Why Use A Substitute For Xanthan Gum?
This is a question that many of you have probably asked yourself. Why use something else when you can use xanthan gum? I have a few reasons you might want to use a xanthan gum alternative!
First and foremost, its availability. Even though it has multiple uses, you cannot find xanthan gum in a supermarket. Secondly, we utilize it in a very minimal quantity, so why spend money on it?
In that scenario, one of the suggested alternatives from the list may be useful. Finally, why run to a store when you have its substitute in your kitchen? You can simply use a substitute to save some time!
This is sufficient reason to consider the xanthan gum substitute.
At this point, I believe you should have a good understanding of xanthan gum and why you would want to use an alternative. Let’s get straight into this article. That is the best xanthan gum substitute!
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10 Best Xanthan Gum Substitutes
This section will assist you in finding the best xanthan gum substitutes. Furthermore, you will learn how to employ each alternative. So, here are some of the best xanthan gum substitutes.
1. Cornstarch/Corn Flour
Corn starch works just like xanthan gum. It is a great thickening agent and can be used as a xanthan gum substitute. Moreover, corn starch is something we all have at home. You can simply substitute cornstarch as a xanthan gum substitute in soups, sauces, or gravies to get that perfect thickness.
Corn starch, just like xanthan gum, is gluten-free. It is also safe to use as well. When substituting xanthan gum with cornstarch, follow the 1:1 method.
2. Egg White
Egg white is another great xanthan gum substitute. It thickens and holds the substitute together in a dish just like xanthan gum.
Egg white. I will say it is the most easily available xanthan gum substitute. It also has a lot of nutritional benefits as well. Therefore, adding egg white instead of xanthan gum while cooking will be a great option.
Egg white is also a great option for people following the keto diet or any other diet. Don’t forget to beat the egg white until it becomes extremely fluffy to get the best result. While replacing, substitute one tablespoon of xanthan gum with one egg white.
3. Unflavored Gelatin
If you plan to bake a cake or a cookie, unflavored gelatin is a great xanthan gum substitute. It will give the same effects to your recipe as xanthan gum.
Also, gelatin is something you might have in your pantry. You could use gelatin in baking as well as cooking. If you plan to prepare some jam or jelly at home, the gelatin will be the safest xanthan gum replacement.
As you may know, gelatin, as you may know, is an animal product and might not suit vegetarian or vegan people. However, if you consider using it, try replacing 2 teaspoons of gelatin with 1 teaspoon of xanthan gum for perfect consistency.
4. Arrowroot Powder
The powder is a plant-based flour obtained from the arrowroot plant. It is a great thickening agent and works well as a xanthan gum substitute.
Arrowroot is also gluten-free. It looks like so much corn starch and serves its purpose too. You can mix it with water and add it to soups or sauces. It reproduces almost the same thickening effect as that of xanthan gum.
It can also be used for baking. However, when used for baking, it might make the cake crispier than soft. This might not be something we all want! If you prefer a crisper cookie, add some arrowroot powder next time.
While replacing xanthan gum with arrowroot powder, follow a 1:1 ratio.
5. Psyllium Husk
If you are someone who’s health-conscious and need a healthy xanthan gum substitute, psyllium husk is for you. It does the job of xanthan gum along with amazing health benefits.
Psyllium husk is obtained from Plantago ovata seeds. It has similar health benefits as xanthan gum. It is a soluble fiber and helps in promoting good gut health.
Psyllium gum has a mild earthy taste and works great as a binding agent. It works great for cooking, especially for baking purposes. When replacing xanthan gum with psyllium husk, use 2 teaspoons of psyllium husk for 1 teaspoon of xanthan gum.
6. Chia Seeds
Chia seed, just like xanthan gum, works as a great thickening agent and stabilizer. Therefore, it can be considered a good xanthan gum substitute.
Chia seed, as you may know, has multiple health benefits. It is loaded with nutrients and antioxidants, which are great for our health. Therefore, use chia seeds if you want a much healthier xanthan gum substitute.
Chia seeds can be used as they are or in ground form. If you want to add it to sauces or soups, boil them with water until they attain a gel-like consistency. It works just like xanthan gum.
When replacing xanthan gum in baking, grind the chia seed into flour before adding it to the baking mix. It will help in binding and give a great texture to your cake.
7. Flax Seeds
Flax seeds are another great xanthan gum substitute. It’s just like chia seed, which has multiple health benefits and works great as a thickener as well as a binding agent.
Flax seeds are a great alternative if you are health-conscious. It has multiple nutrients along with some great acids, which are extremely good for skin as well as hair health.
Flax seeds can be boiled with water to make flaxseed gel or ground to make a powder. It can be added as a salad dressing and in sauces and soups.
However, you cannot use flaxseed as it is in food items as it won’t absorb water very well. However, unlike chia seeds, flaxseed will have an intense nutty flavor that could affect your whole dish.
As a result, when replacing, perform a quick test before using it!
8. Agar Agar
Agar-agar is the vegetarian version of gelatin. It is made from red algae and works really well as a xanthan gum substitute.
To prepare agar agar gel, you need to mix one tablespoon of agar with four tablespoons of water. Cook it until it reaches a thick consistency. This mixture works great as a thickening agent in soups and jams.
While replacing xanthan gum with Agar-agar gel, follow the 1:1 ratio. However, refrain from using agar agar in baking, as it may tend to stiffen the baked item.
9. Guar Gum
You need to try Guar gum if you want an exact xanthan gum substitute. It has a white powdery texture and works as a great thickening agent.
It is also called guaran. It is obtained from guar beans. Guar gum has similar health benefits as xanthan gum. It is great for your gut health and lowers high blood pressure.
However, just like xanthan gum, guar gum is hard to find in supermarkets. But you have a chance to have it. Have it. It is undoubtedly one of the best xanthan gum substitutes.
When replacing xanthan gum with guar gum, add 2 teaspoons of guar gum for every one teaspoon of xanthan gum.
10. Konjac Powder
Konjac gum is another plant-based alternative that can be used as a xanthan gum substitute.
Konjac gum is derived from the konjac plant. This is widely used as a thickening agent in Asian cooking. If you are someone who makes Asian cuisine, you might have it in hand, but just like xanthan gum, it is hard to find. While substituting, follow the 1:1 ratio.
A Short Recap Of The Best Xanthan Gum Substitutes
Are you still undecided about which of these substitutes you should choose? Don’t worry; here’s a little clip that may assist you in escaping this difficult predicament.
Most appropriate: Corn starch is the most acceptable xanthan gum substitute since it can practically match the flavor and taste of xanthan gum.
Gelatin is the most accessible option. Even if they don’t have the same flavor as xanthan gum, they can be safely used for baking and cooking sauces and jams.
Best flavor combination: When guar gum is employed, the flavor profile is the best.
How To Use Xanthan Gum Substitutes In Your Recipes
Xanthan Gum Substitutes
- Corn Starch
- Egg White
- Unflavored Gelatin
- Arrowroot Powder
- Psyllium Husk
- Chia Seed
- Flax Seed
- Agar Agar
- Guar Gum
- Konjac Powder
- Go through the substitutes and see which one seems fit for the recipe.
- Collect your ingredients and use your preferred substitute.
- Use the substitute in the required amount and proceed to make the dish according to the recipe.
I hope you found the answers you were seeking now that we’ve reached the end of the post. Xanthan gum is a versatile ingredient that may add a new dimension to various meals.
Although most of the listed ingredients can be used as xanthan gum substitutes, there is no precise match for xanthan gum. However, if you know of any other alternatives to the ones listed above, please share them in the comments area.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What seasoning is similar to chili powder?
Paprika powder mixed with some cayenne powder brings the closest chili powder flavor.
Can I replace chili powder with cayenne pepper?
Yes. cayenne pepper is a good chili powder substitute. However, cayenne pepper is spicier than chili powder and one should use cayenne powder in moderation as a chili powder substitute.
How much cayenne pepper do I substitute for chili powder?
While replacing chili powder with cayenne pepper, add one-fourth of a teaspoon of cayenne pepper for one teaspoon of chili powder.
Which is better chili powder or paprika?
Chilli powder is much spicier when compared to paprika. However, paprika is less spicy and has a smoky undertone to it. Both of them are equally good and can be used as each other’s substitutes.
What can you use instead of chili powder?
Ancho powder, paprika, cayenne powder, red chili flakes, garlic powder, hot sauce, chili sauce, and black pepper are some of the best chili powder substitutes.