> > > >

All-Purpose Flour

All-Purpose Flours vary throughout North America from region to region. Canadian All-Purpose is superior to American as it can be used for bread, whereas American All-Purpose cannot. All-Purpose Flour is intended for general household use. In commercial usage, it's all very well to stock all different kinds of flour, but this isn't very feasible at home.

All-Purpose Flours are generally a blend of hard and soft wheats, though this too may vary according to manufacturer and the tastes of the area they are producing it for.

Canadian All-Purpose Flour12.8 to 13.5 % (db)0.45 to 0.51% (db)
American All-Purpose Flour10 to 11.5%0.45 to 0.51% (db)
British plain flour7 to 10%0.46% (db)

(db) equals dry basis. Europe uses dry basis measuring, while North America tends to measure at 14% humidity. That being said, North American numbers will often give dry basis equivalents, so where possible those are used in order to be comparing apples with apples, as it were.


In American recipes calling for All-Purpose Flour, use plain flour in the UK. You may have to use a tidge more plain flour as plain flour is somewhat weaker than American All-Purpose.

In Canadian recipes calling for All-Purpose Flour, you can substitute American All-Purpose Flour or UK plain flour except when the recipe is a bread recipe. Canadian All-Purpose is a truly All-Purpose Flour, being very high in gluten, and can be used for bread, but American All-Purpose and UK plain flour cannot. In America and the UK, if the recipe is a bread recipe calling for All-Purpose Flour or just white flour, you must use bread flour: Canadians can use All-Purpose.

That being said, in America amongst home hobby bakers, there is a movement against using bread flour and for going back to using lower-protein American All-Purpose Flour for making artisanal breads.

In Germany, substitute type 405 flour when making cakes; type 550 flour when making breads.


1 pound = 3 3/4 cups unsifted = 4 cups sifted or pre-sifted

Language Notes

Though sometimes also referred to commercially as "Enriched All-purpose Flour", that fuller term is now somewhat redundant as both All-purpose and Plain flours are required by law in both the UK and North America to be enriched; you would be hard-pressed to find such flour that isn't.

See also:

Wheat Flour

All-Purpose Flour; Baker's Flour; Bread Flour; Bromated Flour; Cake Flour; Chapati Flour; Durum Flour; Farina; Farine de Froment; Gluten Flour; Graham Flour; Instant Flour; Matzo Meal; Pastry Flour; Plain Flour; Self-Rising Cake Flour; Self-Rising Flour; Semolina; Sooji; Sprouted Wheat Flour; Stone-Ground Whole Wheat Flour; Wheat Flour; Whole Durum Flour; Whole Wheat Flour

Please share this information with your friends. They may love it.

Also called:

Enriched All-purpose Flour; Farine tout-usage (French)


Oulton, Randal. "All-Purpose Flour." CooksInfo.com. Published 07 September 2002; revised 18 February 2011. Web. Accessed 05/20/2018. <http://www.cooksinfo.com/all-purpose-flour>.

© Copyright 2018. All rights reserved and enforced. You are welcome to cite CooksInfo.com as a reference, but no direct copying and republishing is allowed.