What to Substitute for Corn Flour in Your Pavlova

Pavlova is a delicious meringue-based dessert that is round in shape and is crispy on the outside but soft on the inside. It is normally topped with either fruit or some type of whipped topping, and one of its main ingredients is corn flour.

If you need a substitute for corn flour in pavlova, you can use corn starch, rice starch, or potato starch. There are other replacements for corn flour, but they may not be as good as these three when you’re making pavlova.

Are Corn Flour and Corn Starch the Same Thing?

Bowl of corn starch that can be used as a substitute for corn flour in pavlova
Corn starch.

Many people assume that corn flour and corn starch are the same thing, but they are somewhat different. That is, except in the UK. In the UK, corn starch and corn flour are the same item. The only difference is that when corn flour is spelled as one word (cornflour) it usually refers to something that’s more like fine-ground cornmeal. In the U.S., corn flour and corn starch are two different food items, in part because they come from different parts of the corn.

In the U.S., corn starch is a fine white powder and comes from the starch of the corn kernels. Corn flour, on the other hand, comes from dried corn kernels that are ground very finely.

Wooden bowl of corn flour that can be substituted for in pavlova
Corn flour.

Cornmeal and corn flour are very similar, with the exception being that cornmeal is ground a little coarser than corn flour.

When finding the best substitutes for corn flour in pavlova, these are important facts to keep in mind. You have to consider both the taste and the texture of the replacement food before deciding which one is right for you.

Other Replacements for Corn Flour When Making Pavlova

Pavlova prepared with substitute for corn flour

We mentioned earlier that the best replacements for corn flour when you’re making pavlova are corn starch, rice starch and potato starch, but you might still have luck with other items, including guar gum, arrowroot powder, all-purpose or self-rising flour, and masa harina, which is an ingredient used mostly in Mexico.

While you can use other items in a pinch, such as tapioca flour, sorghum flour, and ground-up flax seeds, these are usually not recommended when you’re making pavlova. This is because they don’t always provide a meringue-like consistency for the dessert.

Corn flour is an important ingredient when you’re making pavlova, but there may be times when this ingredient isn’t available. It’s good to know that you can use rice starch, potato starch, or corn starch instead and still be able to enjoy this delicious dessert.