Have you ever seen a wheat grinder and wondered if it’s worth it? Well, here are some reasons you should give grinding your own wheat a go!
Shelf-life. Whole grain flour (or meal) that you buy at the store goes bad relatively rapidly. Plus, you never know how long flour in the store has been on the shelf. The Whole Grains Council suggests that whole wheat flour can turn rancid in as little as 1-3 months on a cool pantry shelf, and 2-6 months in a freezer! If stored correctly, wheat berries can last 30 years or more in your food storage.
Options. Once you have a grinder, you can grind whatever you want! There are many different kinds of wheat and many different kinds of wheat grinders. You can even grind other things like beans, quinoa, corn, rice, oats, etc.
Texture. When you grind your own flour, you get to control the fineness of the grain. There are typically settings that allow you to grind fine or coarse wheat on each grinder. This means that you can experiment with the texture of the final product and find the perfect flour for you.
Flavor. Although unscientific, many prefer the flavor of freshly-ground flour to that of flour that has been sitting on a shelf.
Cost. This is a tricky one. The initial cost of a grinder is often somewhat off-putting as well as the additional cost of the wheat or other ingredients you’re grinding. The good news is that this is a preparedness item that can be used all the time; so instead of just spending money on an item to have for emergencies, you can incorporate it and use it in your life right now. Depending on the type of flour you normally buy, grinding your own wheat may save you money in the long run and will give you a higher-end flour you may not find at the grocery store. There are also other great benefits to consider.
Nutrition. The Whole Grains Council lists many great benefits (and supporting studies) that come from eating whole grains (grinding your own means you’ve got a fresher product.)), instead of refined grains, some of which include:
- Decreased risk of chronic disease including: stroke, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, asthma, various inflammatory diseases, colorectal cancer, and more
- Better weight maintenance
- Healthier carotid arteries
- Healthier blood pressure levels
- Less gum disease and tooth loss
Of course, benefits are most pronounced in the context of an overall healthy diet, and whole grain foods vary in their level of nutrition. But since whole grains are a big step up from refined, commercially-processed flours and cereals, you really can’t go wrong with whole grains and your own grinder.
Do you have any experience grinding your own wheat? Tell us about it in the comments!