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Feb 5, 2010 02:19 PM

King Arthur flour

I am tempted to try King Arthur flour. Can one REALLY tell the difference from mass market flours?

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  1. My opinion? yes. But here on chowhound everyone has opinions....

    1. Try it. It's not a big investment.

      1. King Arthur bread flour generally has a higher percentage of protein than other commercial brands and that contributes to a higher gluten improved bread dough. I don't use it because I don't believe there's enough benefit to justify the extra cost. I simply check nutritional labels on the sacks of flour and buy the less expensive brands that have a minimum of 12% protein.

        1. i didn't think i'd know t he difference... but it makes WONDERFUL biscuits and pastry.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Kajikit

            I prefer Gold Medal Unbleached for my cakes. KA unbleached is very good for cookies and pie crust.

            1. re: Kajikit

              I much prefer it over Pilsbury and other brands. I don't think it is hype. I think it is good quality. Even if it is a few cents more. I am not going to lose any sleep over spending a few cents more on what I can consider far superior flour. Flour to me is a pretty essential ingredient when it comes to baking...but hey.

            2. Depends on what you're using it for. They have a wider variety of types, such as white whole wheat.
              But don't you dare touch my White Lily!!! There is nothing that equals it for cakes, cookies, tender baked goods, and especially biscuits!!

              5 Replies
              1. re: MakingSense

                Except that White Lily is not being made the same way anymore (apparently, their Knoxville milling operation was closed in 2008, and the new milling operation is not producing flour identically to the closed mill), as a number of threads at Chowhound lament....

                1. re: Karl S

                  It is true that when Smucker's purchased White Lily, they didn't buy the old mill. They transferred operations to another of their own facilities. There was widespread wailing including from Shirley Corriher.
                  We all hate change but sometimes we have to deal with it.
                  White Lily is still the best of them for tender baked goods. Low protein flour, easily available at groceries (depending on where you live,) at a competitive price. King Arthur is substantially more expensive and doesn't hold a candle to White Lily.

                  1. re: MakingSense

                    Oh, I wasn't comparing KA to WL; they are different flours for different uses and there's room for both in American kitchens (WL for biscuit and other recipes that benefit from low protein; KA for breads that benefit from high protein structure). I was merely noting that WL is not quite the same product it was of lore, and that many appear to have switched allegiance to other low protein millers in the South as a result.

                    1. re: Karl S

                      Have you personally noticed a difference in White Lily?

                      1. re: MakingSense

                        No - I haven't had access to it in a few years; I've noticed that a number of people who are regular users reported they have noticed a difference.