There are several different types of flour in the grocery store, and they all have different uses. Here is your ultimate guide on what is 00 flour, what is 00 flour used for, and what to do if you've run out.
- 💡 How is flour classified?
- 💡 What is 00 Flour?
- 💡 Why use 00 Flour?
- 💡 Is 00 flour the same as all-purpose flour?
- 💡 The difference between 00 flour and all-purpose flour
- 💡 Is 00 flour the same as bread flour?
- 💡 The difference between 00 flour and bread flour
- 👩🍳 Where to buy 00 flour
- ✨ How to substitute 00 flour
- ❓00 Flour FAQs
- 🧁 More baking basics articles
💡 How is flour classified?
Different countries employ different classification methods for flour, leading to a lack of global standardization. In the United States, flours are designated with specific names such as all-purpose flour, pastry flour, and bread flour.
Conversely, certain European nations like France, Germany, and Italy utilize numerical systems. These numbers convey information about protein levels, ash content, and the fineness of milling.
Germany and France classify flour based on its ash content. Whereas Italy categorizes flour according to its fineness level, ranging from 00 (the finest) to 2 (the coarsest).
💡 What is 00 Flour?
00 flour, also known as "doppio zero" flour in Italian, is a finely milled high-protein wheat flour that is commonly used in Italian cooking and baking. It is very fine and powdery, which gives it a soft, silky feel. This fine texture is a result of the milling process, where the flour is ground down to a fine powder. In terms of texture, it can be likened to corn starch or baby powder.
Finer flour results in smoother and silkier dough, leading to a softer baked product.
Traditionally, double zero flour is used in Italian cuisine in iconic dishes such as pasta, pizza dough, and specific types of Italian bread. With a higher protein content than other flours (typically around 12-13%), double flour offers the necessary structure and strength to the dough whilst its exceptionally fine texture lends itself to creating smooth and elastic dough.
💡 Why use 00 Flour?
You can choose from two types of 00 flour based on your needs: 00 pizza flour and 00 pasta flour. Pizza flour, made from hard wheat varieties, has a slightly higher protein content of the two. And, this results in more gluten formation, which is ideal for creating pizza crusts that are crispy on the outside and soft and chewy inside.
In contrast, pasta flour, derived from soft wheat varieties, is specially formulated for making fresh pasta. Look for clearly labeled packets to ensure you purchase the appropriate type of Doppio Zero flour for your needs in the kitchen.
💡 Is 00 flour the same as all-purpose flour?
No, 00 flour is not the same as all-purpose flour (AP flour). All-purpose flour is a versatile wheat flour suitable for a wide range of recipes, including cookies, brownies, and cupcakes. While double flour is specialized for Italian dishes, all-purpose flour serves as a general-purpose option, making it popular in various culinary applications across different cuisines.
💡 The difference between 00 flour and all-purpose flour
The main difference between double zero flour and all-purpose flour lies in their texture and protein content. Doppio zero flour, finely milled and powdery, contains a moderate to high protein content (around 12-13%). In contrast, all-purpose flour has a slightly coarser texture and typically contains a moderate protein content, around 9-11%.
Read my detailed flour guide and learn more about all purpose flour and its uses in baking. Because baking is all about precision, and it's important to use the right flour for the right baked goods.
💡 Is 00 flour the same as bread flour?
No, 00 flour is not the same as bread flour. While both flours have relatively high protein content, the key difference lies in their texture and intended use. Doppio zero flour is best for specific Italian dishes like pasta and pizza dough, and bread flour is less specific and designed for making various types of bread. If a recipe calls for one specifically, it's important to use the correct type of flour to achieve the desired results.
💡 The difference between 00 flour and bread flour
Bread flour has slightly more protein and a coarser texture than 00 flour. Double zero flour, finely milled and possessing a silky texture, is widely used in Italian cuisine for making pasta and pizza dough. Its moderate to high protein content, approximately 12-13%, provides the necessary elasticity for creating dough that is easy to manipulate. This results in tender pasta and crispy yet chewy pizza crusts.
On the other hand, bread flour, which has a coarser texture, contains an even higher protein content, typically around 12-14%, which facilitates the development of gluten. Gluten is essential for giving bread its structure, allowing it to rise properly during baking, and making bread light and airy rather than dense.
👩🍳 Where to buy 00 flour
Double zero flour is much easier to get hold of in larger grocery stores than it used to be. Check the baking aisle or the Italian foods section, and you should find it. Alternatively, buy it in Italian specialty food stores or delis or purchase online.
Keep a stock of different types of flour in your pantry if you bake a lot, but make sure to store flour correctly so that you prolong its shelf life as much as possible.
✨ How to substitute 00 flour
Whilst double zero flour is commonly used in Italian cuisine, it might not be readily available near you. Simply use the same amount of all-purpose flour instead of double zero flour in the recipe as a substitute for double zero flour. The result will be slightly chewier, but just as delicious. So, in conclusion, 00 flour vs all-purpose is the closest match.
Do not use pastry flour or cake flour as an alternative in 00 flour recipes. The protein content is not similar enough, and the result will be too soft.
❓00 Flour FAQs
Antimo Caputo is a brand whose finely ground Italian flour is loved all over the world by professionals and home cooks alike in making thin crust pizza and delicious pasta.
It depends on the desired outcome. Double zero flour contains more protein than all purpose flour, leading to increased gluten content formation and a firmer texture. Choose double-zero flour when baking loaves of bread, but refrain from using it in cookies, brownies, or cakes.
Use double zero flour for Neapolitan pizza doughs and make fresh pasta shapes like tagliatelle and filled ravioli.
Producers make double-zero flour from refined durum wheat grains by removing their rough-textured bran and germ. They pass the refined grains through the mill multiple times until they attain an extra fine consistency resembling baby powder.
Use all purpose flour as a substitute for 00 flour.