What is self-rising flour?

What is Self-Rising Flour? Self Rising Flour Brands
Self-rising flour has an almost magical sound to it. And if you look at recipes that call for it, you’ll see that they do not call for the addition of salt or leavening agents, though biscuits, cakes and breads made with seem to rise up just fine. The reason for this is that self-rising flour is actually nothing of the sort. It is flour that has a leavening agent – baking powder – and salt added to it during packaging. Since the ingredients are evenly distributed throughout the flour, you will get the same nice lift to your baked goods every time you use it.

If you don’t have self-rising flour and you have a recipe that calls for it, you can make your own by combining 1 cup all purpose flour with 1 tsp baking powder and 1/4 tsp salt. Similarly, if you only have self-rising flour, you can reduce the baking powder and salt called for in a recipe that uses standard all purpose flour.

Now that being said, it is also worth noting that there are several brands of self-rising flour that have a lower protein content than all purpose flour (11% protein). They are effectively cake flours (8% protein). Wheat protein, or gluten, is what gives baked goods much of their structure, but it can also cause a bread to be too dense or tough. White Lily and Presto are two examples of self-rising brands that use a low-protein cake flour as their base, and if a recipe calls for one of them, you should use cake flour in place of all purpose in the conversion given above.

37 comments

  1. Is self-raising flour not common over there? Here in Australia we have two main flours that are easily bought and used in recipes – Plain Flour and Self-Raising Flour. Very odd…maybe they are different, albeit similar, things?

  2. As katie said, the two main flours sold here in Australia is SRF and Plain Flour. Which is great for cakes and biscuits but in most of the supermarkets I’ve been in I can’t seem to find bakers flours for breads.

  3. I was searching for information as to the first use of
    self rising flour. As a small boy I can remember hearing some
    of the ladies sneering at self rising flour and those who
    used it. I am 80 years old so this must have been many years
    ago. Oh! Yes! I am a biscuit maker and use White Lily flour
    and Crisco. I have had many compliments of my biscuits. My
    wife passed away and before she died she inducted me into the
    biscuit making realm as well help me with other items.
    I still have not learned when self rising flour first
    was used. Have a good day! lazybones

  4. I was looking on here and you done have naything about protein or nutrious facts would be4 nice thanks :)

  5. hey wats the difference between self raising flour and yeast

  6. Which are the brands of flour that are non self rising?

    Thanks!

  7. When you mixed self-rising flour with water only and made to a dough, will the dough rise up after some time?

  8. I had one question to be answered, found it here quickly. Thanks for the information! :)

  9. I now live in Norway, and like many, many other countries S.R.flour is not found. I wanted to make scones and my English recipe called for S.R. flour – so I googled you and hey presto I find my answer. Thank you. However reading some of the comments of the obviously younger researchers fills me with despair. :(

  10. Is self rising flour the same as bread flour. I went to Culinary school and that is something I do not know.

  11. I was geting ready to make a peach cobbler and had a question aout the flour – and I found the answer right away here! Thanks! I wish some of the other readers would behave appropriately!!

  12. ppppppppppppppppp

    what is the purpose of flour

  13. what difference to the cake does it make to use self-raising flour instead of plain flour, salt and baking powder?

  14. Making salt map dough and it calls for not self-rising flour. Is that the same as all purpose flour? Help!

  15. uhm.. what is the definition of self rising flour,…??
    uhm.. pretty cool stuff :)

  16. what is self risinf flour used for…???…:)

  17. Self-rising flour is rarely found in grocery stores in Sweden, which is annoying, because many English recipees calls for it.

    Just like Bil in Norway I find that many comments and questions here fills me with despair :(

  18. OMG i am from england and we hace got no or all flour in the shops this year we have had pratically NONE ! :’(

  19. can you substitute all purpose flour for whole wheat in making self rising flour?

  20. For those in Europe: self-rising flour is just fluor that has had the baking soda and salt pre-added. It’s no different than taking regular flour and adding them. Some recipes use self-rising flour as its easier (you don’t have to have other ingredients on hand).

    If your recipe rises through other means (like a pound cake that uses the eggs to rise) then accidentally switching them is a disaster. But if your recipe calls for baking soda and salt, you can skip them and use the self-rising instead. I personally have grabbed the wrong pack at the grocer, so I really hate self-rising flour, but some love it.

  21. Unlabelled flours. Is there a quick test to identify if flour is SR (self raising)?

  22. Self Raising flour and yeast are completely different. Self raising flour is normal flour mixed with baking powder and salt. Yeast is a living organism used as a rising agent in the making of bread. Don’t use self raising flour to make bread.

  23. Can we use the self-rising flower in making Pizza ?

  24. Thank for the recipe and the opportunity to nitpick: Self-rising flour is three-ingredients-in-one (flour, baking powder and salt). So I’ve got a one-ingredient biscuit recipe: pre-made dough.

  25. Thank you! This was so helpful making a recipe today that called for it!!!!

  26. I’ve been baking for almost 50 years and didn’t realize there was a difference. I don’t think any of my recipe had ever called for SRF but this particular one does. Thanks for a simple and easy to understand explanation!

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