Know Your Bug: Cricket Flour and Other Insects

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As adventurous eaters that are avid believers in nutrition and sustainability, we enjoy recreating our favorite junk foods. However, these foods all have one star ingredient in common: insect flour. To help you become an expert, we’re breaking down the nuances between cricket flour, mealworm flour, and buffalo worm flour.

Cricket Flour

The fastest growing entomophagy trend and most notably called “The Gateway Bug.” What is it? Simply whole roasted crickets ground into a fine powder. There are many ways manufacturers process cricket flour; roasting and freeze-drying are popular methods. Pro-tip: in the ento-world, “powder” and “flour” are used interchangeably.

Flavor: Crickets have a meaty, shrimp-like flavor. They can be great wheat flour substitutes or roasted and seasoned for a crunchy snack.

Nutrition: Crickets are a whopping 69% of protein! Additionally, they are high in minerals like iron and calcium, as well as healthy omega-3 fats.

Uses: We first tested cricket flour at the Bugatarian Inc. test kitchen in the form of pizza. After sampling it with friends, the results were conclusive: delicious, and reminiscent of a whole-grain pizza! However, large volumes of cricket flour can be overpowering, so we recommend using it in a flavorful recipe such as pesto or these delicious cheddar biscuits.

Mealworm Flour

Did you know that beetles are the most commonly eaten insect around the world? Mealworms are one of the most popular species of beetles for eating. It’s easy to see why – this is one of our favorites!

Nutrition: Mealworms are 45% protein by weight and low in fat. Compared to their ento cousins, mealworms are especially high in amino acids that help regulate liver function, wound healing, and general well-being.

Flavor: These delicacies are mild in flavor that may remind you of oats or almond flour.

Uses: We’ve made lower-carb, higher protein pancakes using mealworm. The oat flavor was a perfect match! Our pancakes still maintained their light and fluffy texture, and our taste testers adored them. With less gluten and more protein, you won’t feel bloated after having this stack.

Buffalo Worm Flour

Buffalo worms are yummy snacks commonly enjoyed with beer, or even most recently made into burgers. We love buffalo and mealworms equally – don’t make us choose!

Nutrition: Buffalo worms boast an even higher protein count than mealworms at 56%, while containing fewer calories.

Flavor: Buffalo worm flour has a nutty taste and is a slightly lighter, golden color.

Uses: We use buffalo flour in many of our recipes. Some of our favorites include crackers and crab fritters!

As you can see, insects are widely versatile in flavor and utilization. Whether eaten whole or powdered, you’ll gain nutritional benefits without sacrificing flavor or satiety. Fellow health and fitness junkies rejoice!

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