What Is Cake Flour Not Self Rising?

When a recipe calls for a sort of flour that you are unfamiliar with or don’t have at home, it might be challenging to know what to do. Having all the ingredients prepared but the flour is the last thing you want to happen.

You might discover that some recipes ask for self-rising/raising flour while others call for cake flour. What’s the issue with it? Some recipes may even call for self-rising cake flour, which further adds to the confusion.

Self-rising flour and cake flour are not the same. Cake flour is finely ground flour with little protein, which makes it possible to have a soft and airy texture. Salt and baking powder are added to self-rising flour to aid in its rise. There aren’t any other components in cake flour.

As they won’t produce the same effects on their own, these two varieties of flour shouldn’t be used interchangeably. Cake flour is typically bleached, has a lower protein content, and is finely ground. On the other hand, self-rising flour is relatively comparable to all-purpose flour but has additional additives to aid in rising.

There are workarounds if a recipe calls for either of these types of flour and you don’t have them. You may produce suitable replacements for both of these types of flour (more on this further down).

Is self-raising flour the same as cake flour?

Even before I even began this website, I used cake flour in my recipes for cakes and cupcakes. You’ve undoubtedly heard me explain why if you’ve been watching my Live recipe demos (11 a.m. EDT on Facebook and Instagram!).

It’s one of the most frequent queries I receive from readers. So I decided it was about time to summarize and explain everything in a post.

This post is the first of a series that won’t include recipes. The series’ working title is “Bake like a Boss: tips & tricks that will advance your baking.” How do you feel?

So cake flour is the subject for today. On this website, I have a ton of cake and cupcake recipes, and the majority of them call for cake flour.


Cake flour is an extremely finely ground flour made from soft winter wheat. It is finer, lighter, and softer than all-purpose flour and has less protein. Additionally, it has been bleached, making the color lighter and the grain less dense.

Cake flour doesn’t produce as much gluten because of the decreased protein level. When baking bread, have you ever noticed how chewy and elastic it becomes? Yummy, isn’t it?

Well, it’s good when you’re talking about soft pretzels, but when you’re talking about cakes, it’s actually not so wonderful.

We prefer our cakes to have a fine, close crumb and to be light, delicate, and tender. And if you use cake flour, you will definitely get that!

I was shocked when I used cake flour for the first time to create a cake. Although it seems absurd, it actually had a significant impact on my life. I was astounded by the transformation that it caused in that cake.

I’ve stood by it ever since! Why wouldn’t you want the best cake possible if you were going to the hassle of making one from scratch? Since baking my very first cake all those (cough! cough!) years ago, I’ve made it a point to always have cake flour on hand.


Here in the US, cake flour is rather simple to locate. I’ve never been to a grocery store where it wasn’t available. It is always located near all-purpose flour in the baking section of the grocery store.

There are several different types of flour, including whole wheat flour, bread flour, pastry flour, and unbleached all-purpose flour. Cake flour is one of those, special in its function and readily available next to all the others.

Softasilk, Swan’s Down, King Arthur Flour, and Bob’s Red Mill are a few of my favorite brands. They are all amazing goods that will produce fantastic outcomes.

It can be a little harder for you if you don’t reside in the US. As far as I’m aware, Europe doesn’t have anything quite like it. Cake flour isn’t “self-raising flour” or “sponge flour,” either. “Plain flour, dusted with a little cornstarch” would be the closest equivalent (see “Cake Flour Substitute below).


Yes, in a pinch. But I’d strongly advise keeping a box of cake flour in your cupboard if you truly want to bake like a champ.

You’ll notice that your cakes and cupcakes will have a more open crumb if you use all-purpose flour. In other words, the cake will have larger air pockets.

They’ll also be a little chewier and denser. Cakes made with cake flour have a lighter, softer texture that I find more appealing.


If you’re still not persuaded or if you reside in a region of the world where cake flour is not readily available, you can make a passable substitute by substituting 2 tablespoons of cornstarch for every cup of all-purpose flour.

Since cornstarch contains relatively little protein, it will aid in making all-purpose flour lighter. It may be referred to as “corn flour” depending on where you are in the world. It is powdery and white. It is NOT corn meal, which is typically grainy and yellow.

Combine the cornstarch and flour, sift them together, and then weigh or lightly pour the mixture into a measuring cup before leveling it out. NEVER fill a measuring cup with flour!

Just keep in mind that the outcomes will be better but not precisely the same since this alternative is still not exactly the same as cake flour.


No, cake flour contains gluten. It continues to be made of wheat. Even though it produces less gluten than all-purpose flour, it is still not advised for those who are intolerant to gluten.

Replace all of the flour in the recipe with a gluten-free flour mix if you want to make a cake or cupcake that is free of gluten. Find one that substitutes 1 for 1 (in other words, 1 cup of gluten-free flour is equivalent to 1 cup of all-purpose flour). Here are a few excellent choices:

What is the same as cake flour?

Low protein, finely ground flour is what is known as “cake flour.” The protein content of all-purpose flour, a tougher flour, ranges from 10-12%, while it has about 7-9%. In what ways does this affect baking? You see, the development of gluten is closely correlated with protein content. Due to the decreased protein content of cake flour, less gluten is generated during the mixing process. A softer, fluffier texture results from less gluten production.

Due to the high protein concentration of bread flour, more gluten is produced during the mixing process. Very simple breakdown:

If my flour isn’t self-rising, what happens?

Cake flour is essentially all-purpose flour that has been lightly thickened with cornstarch. Its low protein content—around 8% as opposed to the 10% to 11% in all-purpose flour—gives it a distinctive flavor. When liquids are added, that protein transforms into gluten. This has advantages and disadvantages since gluten gives baked goods structure, but too much gluten can make baked goods tough.

The decreased protein concentration of cake flour helps generate the soft, light texture with just the right amount of structure that is desired in some delicate cakes, such chiffon or angel food.

All-purpose flour and cornstarch (or a cornstarch alternative) can be used to create a cake flour substitute because the cornstarch aids in preventing part of the gluten in the all-purpose flour from forming. The outcome? A cake that is equally delicate as one made with cake flour from the grocery store.

  • Measure out 1 level cup of all-purpose flour for every cup of cake flour a recipe calls for.
  • Take 2 tablespoons of flour out of the calculation. You don’t need those 2 tablespoons; return them to the bag of flour.

Is cake flour the same as all-purpose flour?

The two main variations between all-purpose flour and cake flour are as follows:

  • 1. Texture: The capacity of milled flour to absorb water depends on the flour’s granularity, or particle size. The rate of absorption increases with particle fineness. Cake flour is extra finely milled, producing a crumb that is extremely moist and soft. Contrarily, the bleaching procedure, which can soften the texture of AP flour, has a significant impact on the texture. While unprocessed AP flour has a rougher and denser texture, bleached AP flour has a finer, softer feel.
  • 2. Protein: Soft wheat is used to make cake flour. This type of flour produces a more delicate treat since it has less protein and gluten than AP flour. The ideal use for all-purpose flour, which is a mixture of soft and hard wheat with 10% protein, is for baked items with heavier textures.

How is cake flour transformed into self-rising flour?

In the UK, Nigella’s recipe for Victoria sponge cake (from Domestic Goddess) calls for self-raising flour; however, self-rising cake flour was specified for the US, and standard US self-rising flour contains additional salt, making it unsuitable for this recipe (US self-rising flour in the US is mostly used for biscuits and sometimes pancakes). Due to its low protein level and ability to produce a light, soft cake, cake flour is a fantastic choice for a sponge cake.

Making the switch from conventional cake flour to self-rising flour is quite simple. 1 3/4 teaspoons of baking powder should be used for every cup of cake flour. Before usage, combine the flour and baking powder by whisking or sieving. If a recipe calls for all-purpose flour, convert it to self-rising by adding 2 teaspoons of baking powder for every cup of flour.

What occurs if all-purpose flour is substituted for cake flour?

While cake flour makes the fluffiest, lightest cakes conceivable, all-purpose flour can be used in any baking recipe with at least some success (thus the name “all-purpose”). The homemade alternative won’t yield precisely the same outcomes as cake flour, but it will get close.

What is the name of cake flour?

Cake flour has a lower protein level than all-purpose flour and is a light, finely ground flour. Cake flour is made from soft wheat and has the least protein, 5 to 8%, when compared to other types of flour. For the purpose of comparison, all-purpose flour typically has 10 to 13% protein, which can work well in practically any recipe. However, cake flour’s high starch and low protein content aid in producing the lightest, tastiest cakes.

Since cakes and other light, airy baked items are our favorite to make, it goes without saying that we love cake flour! If you’ve come across one of the numerous mouthwatering cake flour recipes available, you might be curious about what cake flour is, what it’s best used for, and whether you can make it if you don’t currently have any on hand. We at Bob’s Red Mill have spent many hours studying the components and manufacturing procedures that go into all of our flours, and cake flour is no exception. So fasten your seatbelts because you are about to embark on a wonderful voyage via cake flour!

Which cake flour is best?

An extremely delicate Italian “Wheat flour in grade 00 is prepared especially for making fresh cakes, pastries, and biscuits. The production of fresh pastries, including homemade pastries, uses this product extensively. Type of Granoro “00, which yields better-quality products, is extracted with a low extraction yield from the centre of soft wheat grain.

Is baking powder necessary for cake flour?

Is there baking powder in cake flour? Not at all, no. There aren’t any rising agents in cake flour. Therefore, while using it, your cake will need to be baked with baking soda or powder.

If I don’t have cake flour, what else can I use?

Add two tablespoons of cornstarch or arrowroot powder after removing two tablespoons of the initial one level cup of AP flour. To make sure the components are evenly distributed, sift the mixture together after that.

The addition of cornstarch to all-purpose flour prevents the production of gluten while simultaneously providing your cake structure and “sponginess.” Although arrowroot powder can easily be substituted for cornstarch, it’s crucial to remember that arrowroot will speed up the cooking process and frequently result in moister cakes than those produced with cornstarch.

What is the purpose of cake flour?

The amount of gluten in each type of flour makes a significant effect. High-protein (“hard wheat”) or low-protein wheats can be used to make flour (“soft wheat”). More protein in the flour causes more gluten to form, which increases the final baked good’s strength, volume, and elasticity. For instance, bread flour—the toughest kind of flour—is manufactured from hard wheat, giving bread its desired chewy, dense texture. But you don’t want these characteristics when you’re making delicate pastries or cakes, where you want a sensitive crumb.

On the other end of the scale, soft wheat cake flour has the lowest protein concentration of any type of flour (7–9%). Cake flour is frequently used to make soft, tender baked items like cakes, pastries, or biscuits since its gluten proteins are quite weak. The gluten in cake flour is further broken down by the chlorination process, making the flour even more delicate.

Hard and soft wheat are combined to create all-purpose flour. All-purpose flour maintains its shape while not providing the same density or degree of gluten development as bread flour due to its moderate protein concentration (10-13% protein). Because it’s a good compromise between flours that are higher or lower in gluten, all-purpose flour is so frequently used (and the default when a recipe just calls for flour).