Due to the increase in demand for wheat, rye, and gluten-free products, alternative flours have become a popular option in order to replace wheat and its by-products in baking products such as bread, muffins, and cake.
Almond flour is one of the most popular alternatives to wheat flour. It is obviously not a viable alternative for those with nut allergies, and can also be expensive, but can also be made at home by grinding almonds (without skins). Ground almonds with the skin on create almond meal, a much courser flour, which is still a viable alternative, depending on what the recipe requires.
In addition to being a wheat flour alternative, almond flour is also a highly nutritious ingredient, containing magnesium and vitamin E.
Coconut flour is made by grounding dried coconut. It is the most similar to traditional flour in color and texture. Like almond flour, coconut flour contains numerous vitamins and minerals not always contained in traditional flours. It is also popular amongst long carb, high-fat dieters, due to its low carbohydrate content and high healthy fat content.
Tapioca is derived from the cassava root and has been used as a starch product in various tropical countries for many years. Tapioca flour lacks significant nutritional value other than carbohydrate, and in this regard, is not near as rich in vitamins and minerals as almond or coconut flour, but it does contain less fat than these options. However, due to its starchy nature, it is very useful as a thickening agent in wheat and gluten-free cooking and baking. For example, it can be used as an alternative to corn-starch in gravies and sauces.