What Does Cake Flour Do To Cookies

What Does Cake Flour Do to Cookies? Unlock Baking Secrets

Last Updated on April 23, 2024 by Lori Walker

If you’ve ever baked cookies, you’ll know just how important the choice of flour is in creating a tender, soft texture. You may find it unexpected, but cake flour can revolutionize your cookie dough.

I recently baked a batch of cookies using cake flour instead of the usual all-purpose flour, which made a big difference. 

With its finer texture, cake flour gives cookies a softer and more delicate crumb. 

But if you’re still wondering, “What does cake flour do to cookies?” I’ll share how this special flour works magic on your favorite treats. 

What Effect Does Cake Flour Have On Cookies?

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Cake flour, with its lower protein content of about 7% to 9%, significantly impacts the texture of cookies. Using cake flour in your cookie, less gluten forms during dough mixing. 

This reduced gluten development leads to cookies that are notably delicate, soft, and fluffy. 

“Knowledge is flour, but wisdom is bread.”

Austin O’Malley, Author

They take on a more cake-like consistency, separating them from the chewier texture of higher-protein flours. 

So, if you’re aiming for cookies that practically melt in your mouth, opting for cake flour is the way to go, offering a delightful twist to the classic cookie experience.

Is It Better To Use Cake Flour For Baking Cookies?

Yes, cake flour, characterized by its weak gluten proteins [1], is better to use if you prefer delicate, melt-in-your-mouth cookies with a cake-like softness; using cake flour can be a superb option. 

But it still depends on your desired texture; since other people like a chewier or denser cookie, a flour blend with varying protein content might be a better choice. 

Ultimately, the decision varies on the desired cookie texture, offering a range of delightful options for every palate.

But how can you make pancakes with cake flour?

What’s The Ratio Of Cake Flour To All-Purpose Flour Used For Making Cookies?

When adjusting your cookie recipe to incorporate cake flour, a common ratio is combining 75% cake flour and 25% all-purpose flour. 

For example, if your cookie recipe calls for 2 cups of flour, you can replace it with 1½ cups of cake flour and ½ cups of all-purpose flour. 

This adjustment reduces gluten formation in the dough, resulting in softer, fluffier cookies. 

Experimenting with this ratio allows you to fine-tune the texture to your liking, offering a delightful twist to your favorite cookie recipes.

What Can You Use Instead Of Cake Flour?

Flour on a Plastic Container

If you find yourself without cake flour for your cookie recipe, you can easily create a substitute using all-purpose flour and either cornstarch or arrowroot powder. 

To adjust, measure out one cup of all-purpose flour, remove two teaspoons, and then substitute two tablespoons of cornstarch [2] or arrowroot powder for those missing tablespoons. 

This blend follows the lower protein content of cake flour, resulting in a softer, more delicate texture in your cookies. 

With this simple swap, you can still achieve the desired tenderness and lightness in your baked goods when cake flour isn’t readily available.

Check out the best cake flours you can use here.

What Will Happen If You Don’t Put Enough Flour In The Cookies?

If you add enough flour when making cookies, things can go well. Cookies might end up flat, greasy, and super crunchy. 

Flour is like the cookie’s backbone, helping it keep its shape and soak extra moisture during baking. 

“Cake flour in cookies is the secret ingredient that makes them so soft, you’ll think you’re eating a cloud.”

Leonelli Bakery

With enough flour, cookies can spread out too thin on the baking sheet, which makes them retain their desired texture and look. 

As such, it’s crucial to measure your flour correctly to ensure your cookies turn out just how you want them – deliciously chewy and satisfying.

But how can you get flour lumps out of gravy?

What Kind Of Flour Works Best For Cookies?

When choosing the ideal flour for baking cookies, pastry flour emerges as a top choice. 

Made from soft wheat, it falls between cake flour and all-purpose flour in terms of protein content, typically around 8 to 9 percent.

This sweet spot strikes a perfect balance between flakiness and tenderness, making pastry flour an ideal choice for cookie recipes.

Also Read: What Will Happen If You Forgot To Put Baking Soda In Cookies?


Is cake flour the same thing as cookie flour?

No, cake flour is not the same as cookie flour. While both flours contribute to tenderness, cake flour takes it to the next level. 

It’s specifically designed for delicate, soft baked goods like cakes, whereas cookie flour, typically all-purpose or pastry flour, caters to the unique texture and structure needed for perfect cookies.

What effect does bread flour have on cookies?

Cookies won’t taste any different if you use bread flour instead of all-purpose flour, but the texture will be very different. 

It will have a chewier consistency compared to those made with all-purpose flour.

Which flour works best for chocolate chip cookies?

For chocolate chip cookies, using unbleached, all-purpose flour is the recommended choice. 

It strikes the perfect balance of texture and flavor, making deliciously classic cookies to please your taste buds.

But what do you make using cake flour?

How do cookies stay soft and chewy?

To maintain that desirable softness and chewiness, it’s crucial to store your cookies in an airtight container, not a cookie jar. 

This simple step preserves their moisture and texture, ensuring they stay irresistibly delicious over time.

Find out how you can make cookies without vanilla extract here.

Final Thoughts

In baking cookies, choosing the right flour can be a game-changer. As I’ve experimented with various flours, I’ve discovered that cake flour, with its lower protein content, can work wonders. 

Mixing 75% cake flour with 25% all-purpose flour results in cookies that are not just soft and tender but also boast a unique cake-like texture. 

Meanwhile, if cake flour isn’t in your pantry, a blend of all-purpose flour and cornstarch or arrowroot powder can come to the rescue. 

So, whether you opt for cake flour or its substitute, you’re in control of creating cookies that will delight your taste buds.


Lori Walker

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