Unenriched semolina flour is made from coarsely ground durum wheat (Triticum durum). It is extremely high in gluten, which is why pasta made from semolina keeps its shape during cooking. Semolina flour is the preferred flour for pasta, but is also used in recipes for sweet desserts, dumplings, and soups.
Semolina flour is made from coarsely ground, high-gluten durum wheat. The high gluten content means that foods made from semolina flour will have a firmer consistency compared to those made from wheat with less gluten. This quality is the reason why semolina is the preferred flour for pasta.
Semolina adds a nutty, sweet flavor and striking pale yellow color to bread, pizza, and pasta.
Sprinkle it on a baking sheet in place of cornmeal to keep bread from sticking or boil it in milk for warm breakfast porridge.
Create a sweet summery dessert by boiling semolina together with juice from berries and then whipping it until it is light and fluffy.
While shopping for semolina, you may see other products that claim to be semolina. They might be labeled “corn semolina” or “rice semolina.” These grains are not true semolina. They may be labeled as such because they are coarse-grained flours as opposed to finely grained flours. You should avoid these if your recipe calls for semolina.
You can purchase semolina flour online, in many Italian specialty stores, and in regular grocery stores where it is usually located near the all-purpose flour. The main difference you may be able to see is that semolina is a good bit coarser than traditional flour and may be darker and more golden in color (this will depend on the specific variety).
Store semolina in airtight containers in a cool, dry place.
Semolina’s quality is directly dependent upon the quality of the hard durum wheat from which it is made. The nutritional profile varies depending on environmental conditions and cultural practices during "growing". On average, one 3.5 oz serving of semolina contains 360 calories, of which 290 are from carbohydrates. A serving of semolina also contains 12.7 grams of protein, is low in fat with approximately one gram of fat per serving, and is rich in B-complex vitamins, including folate and thiamine.1
Semolina flour has a higher protein and gluten content than regular flour. Semolina has a protein content of around 13% compared to all-purpose flour with 8-11%. The proteinogenic amino acid making up the greatest percentage of amino acids in semolina is glutamic acid, followed by prolin2. Additional nutritional information is listed in the nutrition table for this ingredient.
The main health concern with semolina is that it is extremely high in gluten, which makes it unsuitable for those suffering from celiac disease or gluten sensitivity. Individuals who are allergic to wheat will also be allergic to semolina.
Made from coarsely ground hard durum wheat, semolina flour is pale to dark yellow. It is the main ingredient in pasta as the high gluten content in the flour helps cooked pasta retain its shape. It is also used in puddings, hot cereals, and bread.
In the United States, a coarser meal made from softer types of wheat is known as farina. It has a lower protein and gluten content than semolina and is usually used to make cooked cereal.
Meal or flour may be produced from grains such as rice or corn but is not true semolina. Meal produced from corn is more commonly known as grits in the U.S.1