Food Guide

Tapioca Starch vs Potato Starch: Which is the Superior Gluten-Free Thickener?

There are many types of starches that are used in cooking.

Two popular starches are tapioca starch and potato starch.

They have different properties, which can affect the outcome of your dish.

Below is a comparison of these two starches to help you choose the right one for your recipe.

What is special about tapioca starch?

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When it comes to modifying your diet or exploring new ingredients, tapioca starch is a great place to start.

Although tapioca starch is not as popular as other starches like potato or corn, it has some unique properties that make it a worthwhile addition to any kitchen.

Tapioca starch, also known as cassava flour or manioc flour, is a white flour made from the root of the cassava plant, which is native to South America.

It is a gluten-free starch, so it is perfect for people who are gluten intolerant or have celiac disease.

This versatile starch has a variety of uses, both in savory and sweet dishes.

  • Tapioca starch is odorless and flavorless and has a very mild sweetness, so it will not alter the taste of your dishes.
  • It is used as a thickener or binder in both sweet and savory dishes better than other gluten-free starches.
  • It has a high concentration of amylose, which gives it its thickening power.
  • It is also used as a replacement for wheat flour in baking, including pies, puddings, pastries and gluten-free baking.

What is special about potato starch?

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Potato starch is a type of starch that is derived from potatoes.

It has a number of special features that make it a good choice for use in different applications.

Potato starch is high in amylose and low in amylopectin, making it especially good for thickening and gelling agents.

It also means that potato starch is metabolized more slowly than other starches, which can help you feel fuller longer.

It also has a bland flavor and cooks quickly, making it a versatile ingredient for both savory and sweet recipes.

Potato starch is also gluten-free, making it a good option for people who are gluten intolerant or have Celiac disease.

Also, it’s perfect for recipes like gravies, soups and stews.

Potato starch also has a creamy texture, which makes it a great choice for gluten-free baking.

Additionally, potato starch is also rich in antioxidants, including vitamin C and carotenoids like lutein and zeaxanthin.

These nutrients can help protect your eyesight and support your overall health.

Finally, potato starch also has a very long shelf life, which makes it an ideal ingredient for use in food products.

What are the differences between tapioca starch and potato starch?

Recently, there has been some confusion about the differences between tapioca starch and potato starch.

Both are gluten-free, but they have different properties.

Here is a closer look at the significant things that set them apart.

 Tapioca starchPotato starch
OriginExtracted from the root of the cassava plant.Extracted from potatoes.
FlavorMore neutral in flavor.Stronger potato flavor.
TextureThinner consistency, more soluble in cold water and forms a smooth gel.Less soluble in cold water and forms a thicker gel.   Doesn’t work as well when heated.
Nutrient contentGluten-free starch.Rich in carbohydrates.   High in fiber and potassium.
UsageUsed as a thickener for sauces or soups.     Replacement for wheat flour in baking.Used as a stabilization agent in products like ice cream.   ​​Used as a pan-frying flour to create a crispy coating on food.

What are the similarities between tapioca starch and potato starch?

Both tapioca starch and potato starch are gluten-free starches that offer a number of similarities in terms of flavor, texture, and nutritional benefits.

They are both versatile ingredients.

First, both tapioca starch and potato starch are derived from tubers, are gluten-free and have a neutral flavor.

As a result, they are good choices for people with celiac disease or gluten intolerance.

Additionally, both starches provide a light and airy texture when used in cooking or baking.

They can be used as alternatives to wheat flour in baking recipes or cornstarch in cooking ingredients.

They have similar health benefits.

What is more, both starches are easy to digest and unlikely to cause digestive problems.

Also, they are both carbohydrate-rich, and they both have a high glycemic index.

This means that they can help to regulate blood sugar levels and provide sustained energy.

Ultimately, both tapioca starch and potato starch make good additions to a healthy diet.

Which one is better?

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Both tapioca starch and potato starch are versatile starches that can be used in a variety of recipes.

They have similar properties, but there are some key differences between them.

If you’re looking for a gluten-free thickener, tapioca starch is the better choice, but if you need a stabilizer that won’t overpower your dish’s flavor, go with potato starch.

Which one do you prefer?

Leave a comment below!

Emily W.

Emily Wong is an Asian-American food writer the founder of With nearly 8 years of experience, she has a passion for making cooking accessible to everyone and sharing her personal experiences with food. Emily's vision for is to create a community of food lovers who are passionate about cooking, eating, and sharing their experiences with others. Read my story
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