Hazelnut Flour: 5 Health Benefits And A Guide To Make It At Home
Image Credit: Unsplash

Hazelnut flour, often hailed as a hidden gem in the world of baking and cooking, offers a multitude of benefits that extend beyond its delectable taste. Made by finely grinding roasted hazelnuts, this versatile flour brings a delightful nutty flavour and a host of nutritional advantages to your culinary creations. Whether you're following a gluten-free diet, seeking to enhance the flavours in your recipes, or simply exploring new ingredients, hazelnut flour is a game-changer. In this article, we'll dive into the realm of hazelnut flour, uncovering its health benefits and sharing a simple method to make it at home. 

Hazelnut flour is a type of flour made from finely ground hazelnuts. It is produced by grinding roasted hazelnuts into a fine powder, resulting in a flour-like consistency. Hazelnut flour is a popular alternative to traditional wheat flour for those following a gluten-free diet or looking for a nutty flavour profile in their recipes. It is known for its rich, slightly sweet taste and can add a unique depth of flavour to various dishes. Hazelnut flour is not only prized for its culinary uses but also valued for its nutritional content, as it is a good source of healthy fats, fibre, and various vitamins and minerals.

Hazelnut Flour Vs. Other Common Flours

Hazelnut flour, also known as hazelnut meal or ground hazelnuts, has a unique texture compared to all-purpose, cake, or bread flour. It is made by finely grinding hazelnuts into a powder, but it still retains small pieces of ground hazelnuts. As a result, hazelnut flour has a slightly grainy consistency and may add a bit of crunch to baked goods. This texture can provide an interesting contrast and flavour profile in recipes.

One significant difference between hazelnut flour and other flours is its gluten content. Hazelnut flour is gluten-free, while all-purpose, cake, and bread flours contain varying amounts of gluten. Gluten is a protein that gives dough its elasticity and structure. It is responsible for the rise and chewiness of bread and contributes to the structure of cakes. However, some people have gluten sensitivities or allergies and need to avoid it in their diet. In such cases, hazelnut flour can be an excellent alternative for baking gluten-free recipes.

Another aspect to consider is the protein content. Hazelnut flour has a higher protein content compared to all-purpose or cake flour, but it is lower than bread flour. This higher protein content in hazelnut flour can contribute to a richer and nuttier flavour in baked goods. The protein also helps with browning and contributes to the structure of the final product. It is important to note that the lack of gluten in hazelnut flour affects its ability to bind and trap air like traditional flours, so additional ingredients or techniques may be required to achieve the desired texture.

Given these characteristics, hazelnut flour is particularly suitable for certain types of recipes. It works well in cookies, brownies, cakes, muffins, and other baked goods where a nutty flavour and texture are desired. Hazelnut flour can be used as a partial substitute for all-purpose or cake flour in these recipes, but it's generally recommended to combine it with other gluten-free flours or starches to improve texture and binding.

When it comes to Indian cooking, hazelnut flour is not a commonly used ingredient in traditional Indian recipes. Indian cuisine relies heavily on flours like wheat flour, rice flour, chickpea flour (besan), and various other lentil flours. These flours have their own distinct flavours, textures, and properties that are important for achieving the authentic taste and texture of Indian dishes. While hazelnut flour could be experimented with in certain Indian-inspired recipes or fusion dishes, it may not be a suitable replacement for the flours traditionally used in Indian cooking due to its distinctive flavour and texture.

Benefits Of Hazelnut Flour

Hazelnut flour offers several health benefits due to its nutrient profile. Here are some of the key health benefits of hazelnut flour:


Hazelnut flour is packed with essential nutrients, including vitamin E, magnesium, calcium, potassium, and B vitamins. These nutrients play vital roles in supporting overall health, including promoting heart health, maintaining strong bones, and supporting proper nerve function.

Healthy Fats

Hazelnut flour is a great source of healthy fats, particularly monounsaturated fats, which have been linked to various health benefits. Monounsaturated fats can help lower bad cholesterol levels, reduce inflammation, and support a healthy cardiovascular system.

Dietary Fibre

Hazelnut flour is high in dietary fibre, which aids in digestion and helps regulate blood sugar levels. Fibre promotes satiety, making you feel fuller for longer and potentially aiding in weight management.

Antioxidant Powerhouse

Hazelnuts, the main ingredient in hazelnut flour, are rich in antioxidants like vitamin E and phytochemicals. Antioxidants help protect the body against oxidative stress, which is associated with various chronic diseases and ageing.

Gluten-Free Alternative

For individuals following a gluten-free diet, hazelnut flour serves as an excellent substitute for traditional wheat flour. It allows those with gluten intolerance or celiac disease to enjoy a wide range of baked goods while adding a delicious nutty flavour.

Best Ways To Use Hazelnut Flour

Hazelnut flour is a versatile ingredient that can be used in various culinary creations. Here are some of the best ways to use hazelnut flour:


Hazelnut flour can be used as a substitute for traditional wheat flour in baking recipes. It adds a nutty flavour and a moist texture to cakes, cookies, muffins, and bread. You can use it as a partial replacement for wheat flour or explore recipes that are specifically designed for gluten-free baking.


Hazelnut flour can be used as a coating for meats, poultry, fish, or even vegetables. Dip the item in a beaten egg or another binding agent, then coat it with hazelnut flour before frying, baking, or sautéing. It adds a delicious nutty crust and helps seal in moisture.


Hazelnut flour can act as a thickening agent in sauces, soups, or stews. It adds a subtle nutty flavour while helping to create a rich and creamy texture.

Energy Balls or Bars

Mix hazelnut flour with other ingredients like dates, nut butter, and dried fruits to create homemade energy balls or bars. They make for a nutritious and satisfying snack.

Nutty Topping

Use hazelnut flour as a topping for fruit crisps, crumbles, or even savoury casseroles. It adds a delightful crunch and enhances the overall flavour.

How To Make Hazelnut Flour At Home?

Making hazelnut flour at home is a straightforward process. Here's a simple method to make hazelnut flour:


 Raw or roasted hazelnuts


 Start by preheating your oven to 350°F (175°C) if using raw hazelnuts. If you already have roasted hazelnuts, you can skip this step.

 Spread the hazelnuts in a single layer on a baking sheet. If the hazelnuts still have their skins, it's recommended to roast them in the oven for about 10–12 minutes until the skins darken and crack.

 Once roasted, let the hazelnuts cool slightly. If the skins are intact, you can place the roasted hazelnuts on a clean kitchen towel and rub them together to remove the loose skins.

 Transfer the cooled and peeled hazelnuts to a food processor or blender.

 Process the hazelnuts in short pulses until they become a fine powder. Be careful not to overprocess, as hazelnuts can release their natural oils and turn into hazelnut butter.

 Pause occasionally to scrape down the sides of the processor or blender to ensure even grinding.

 Once the hazelnuts have reached a flour-like consistency, stop processing and check the texture. If any larger pieces remain, pulse a few more times until you achieve a uniform powder.

 Carefully transfer the hazelnut flour to an airtight container or jar for storage.