Baking with OLIPOP

4 min read

Cooking with Cassava Root: Cassava Root Sugar Cookies Recipe

Move over kale, there's a new popular ingredient hitting the health food shelves, and it's not you! Today, the hot ingredient is cassava root! For those of you who read your ingredient labels, you might have noticed the ingredient popping up in your food items, from protein bars to cookies.


With this recent rise in cassava's popularity, you might be wondering what you need to know about the ingredient and if you should start taking the matter into your own hands and cooking with the novel ingredient. Here is everything you should know about cooking with cassava root (hint: you should be) and a delicious Cassava Root Sugar Cookie recipe you need to try!

Cooking with Cassava Root: What is Cassava Root

A little background, cassava is a root loaded with fiber and prebiotics. For developing countries and half a billion people, cassava is a major source of their diet and is regarded as a staple food. In fact, after wheat, rice, and maize, cassava is one of the most cultivated plants. More than just a staple food, cassava is also used in various industrial applications, such as biofuels, textiles, paper, adhesives, sweeteners, glues, plywoods, and many more. Part of its popularity comes from being an extremely drought-tolerant crops and its ability to withstand the most challenging growing conditions.


Cassava comprises fiber, B vitamins, and vitamin C—however, it is best known for its prebiotic effects. A resistant starch, cassava is not digested in the small intestine and goes into the large intestine where it ferments. As they ferment, the fiber functions as a prebiotic and, doing so, feeds the good bacteria in the gut. As a bonus of the resistant starch, cassava does not raise glucose levels.

In OLIPOP, Cassava is one of three prebiotic fibers we use to support digestive health and make sure your "good" bacteria are happy and healthy. Plus, it has no fructose and contains beneficial complex carbohydrates.

Cooking with Cassava Root: How to Use Cassava Root

The root of the cassava is the most commonly consumed portion of the plant. As a significant carbohydrate source, cassava root can be transformed into flour, also known as gari, garri kpokpo, flour, foofo, or miondo, in various parts of the world. As a flour ingredient, cassava is beneficial to those who suffer from food allergies because it is gluten-free, grain-free, and nut-free.


Today, adding cassava root into your diet is very easy. There is an abundance of products with cassava as an ingredient, including, Siete Family Foods Cassava Flour Tortillas, Partake Cookies, Otto's Cassava Flour, and Jovial Grain Free Cassava Pasta.

Cooking with Cassava Root

Finally, the days of only having white and whole wheat flour options at the grocery store are gone. Today, we have various flour options lending themselves to multiple textures, flavors, and nutrients and allowing us to enjoy many of our favorite flavors and foods. Cassava flour happens to be one of them!


One of the most common uses of cassava flour is to create baked goods like bread, cakes, and pastries. As a replacement for white and wheat flour, cassava flour can be utilized in thickeners, dehydrated soups, noodles, extruded products, seasonings, breaded, baby food, sweets, and processed meat[1].


Cassava flour is created from fresh cassava, and the process includes cleaning, separating inner and outer epidermis, detoxifying, steaming, slicing, drying, and ultra-fine grinding. After it is created, cassava flour is rich in various nutrients; namely, fibers, vitamins, and minerals, and consequently, it is used in the feed, food, and chemical industries[2].


The nutritional benefits of cassava are just some of the many benefits of cooking with cassava root. Cassava flours is also gluten-free, grain-free, and nut-free and, therefore, a beneficial ingredient for those following Paleo, Whole30, and gluten-free diets. Additionally, in comparison to other gluten-free flours, cassava flour has a low fat content and a high water content. Moreover, it contains a lower calorie density than flours such as corn, plantain, rice, coconut, sorghum, and wheat[3].


To encourage you to start incorporating this incredible root in your diet more often, we snagged a sugar cookie recipe from Tender Bakery. These soft, chewy sugar cookies also happen to also be grain-free and gluten-free. So now that we're hungry just thinking about cookies, let's get to cooking, shall we?

Cassava Root Sugar Cookies Recipe

THE COOKIES


Ingredients:

    • 1 cup blanched almond flour
    • 1 cup Otto's Cassava Flour
    • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
    • ½ tsp baking powder
    • 1 flax egg (3T flaxseed meal + 2.5T water)
    • ½ tsp salt • ¼ cup solid coconut oil
    • 1 tbsp water
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Method:

  • Whisk dry ingredients together in a bowl. Combine sugar and coconut oil in another bowl with a mixer at medium speed. Beat until thick paste forms. (Pro-tip: for large lumps of coconut oil, use your hands!). Add in the flax egg and combine. Add dry ingredients, vanilla, water, and mix once more until a dough forms. *Be careful not to overmix!
  • Spread the dough onto plastic wrap, form it into a ball and press down to create a flat disc. Chill in the fridge for 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 325°F and line your baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Let the dough warm up on the counter for 5-10 minutes before cutting it in half. Sprinkle some Cassava Flour onto your counter and your rolling pin. Roll out the dough to 1/4" thickness and cut your shapes.
  • Place about 2" apart on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes, until cookies are golden brown and firm.
  • Let cool on the pan for a few minutes before transferring to the rack. Let cool completely before icing.


THE ICING

 

Ingredients:

  • 2/3c organic powdered sugar
  • 3-4 tsp water


Method:


Combine powdered sugar and water. Mix until smooth!

 

Sources

  1.  Johanna Alejandra Aristizabal Galvis, José Alberto García Agredo, and Bernardo Ospina Patiño, “Refined Cassava Flour in Bread Making: A Review,” Ingeniería e Investigación 37, no. 1 (January 1, 2017): 25, https://doi.org/10.15446/ing.investig.v37n1.57306.
  2. Haiqin Lu et al., “Study on Quality Characteristics of Cassava Flour and Cassava Flour Short Biscuits,” Food Science & Nutrition 8, no. 1 (December 13, 2019): 521–33, https://doi.org/10.1002/fsn3.1334.
  3. “Health Benefits of Cassava Flour,” WebMD, April 14, 2021, https://www.webmd.com/diet/health-benefits-of-cassava-flour.
Cheat Sheet
  • Cassava is a root loaded with fiber and prebiotics that is turned into flour
  • As a flour ingredient, cassava is beneficial to those who suffer from food allergies because it is gluten-free, grain-free, and nut-free.
  • Adding cassava root into your diet is very easy as there are an abundance of products with cassava as an ingredient
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