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Substitutes for Minute Tapioca

Suppose you want to avoid the “fish-eye” appearance of some pearl tapioca in the end product of your recipe. Instead, the tapioca called for is Minute Tapioca, an instant form that can be purchased at the grocery among baking products or puddings, among other things.

It is quite simple to make Minute Tapioca yourself. You can crush instant tapioca products in a food processor or mortar and pestle before adding them to your recipe for the same results. Notably, it is great thickening for pies.

Yes, minute tapioca is pretty awesome in the required recipes. Still, sometimes you might want to opt for something a little different, or maybe your neighborhood store is out of stock.

This article will be very interesting and helpful in the kitchen since it will be an eye-opener to some good alternatives to minute tapioca.

What is Minute Tapioca

Minute Tapioca is known as the brand name for Kraft’s instant tapioca. It is granulated instant tapioca that is well utilized to thicken pie fillings, stews, gravies, and soups.

Instant tapioca is produced from cassava. It is crushed into fine granules that easily dissolve in pie filling. It is well appreciated for its thickening characteristics.

Moreover, you won’t get the little soft, chewy pearls associated with tapioca pudding and bubble tea since it’s so finely powdered, which is a good thing if you’re preparing a pie.

Tapioca Nutrition Facts

tapioca nutrition facts

Minute Tapioca Uses in Recipes

Notably, unlike regular tapioca, which has huge, pearl-like beads, minute tapioca has little grains. It can be frozen and cooked for longer periods.

Minute tapioca is commonly used to thicken puddings, gravies, stews, soups, and sauces. The popularity of the minute tapioca as a thickening emanates from the fact that it adds no fat to the recipes in which it is used – making it a healthy option.

Furthermore, because minute tapioca has a mild flavor, it can thicken meals such as soups and sauces without overpowering the flavors of those dishes.

Check out several varieties of recipes you can use minute tapioca in:

Minute Tapioca Substitutes

Now that we have dug deep into what Minute tapioca is all about, plus how we can well utilize it in our cooking and recipes. However, we need to consider scenarios whereby we may not have Minute Tapioca.

This is why I have highlighted, in detail, some brilliant substitutes of Instant Tapioca you can use in your recipes instead.

Wheat Flour

Wheat Flour


Wheat flour can be used in place of instant tapioca. Notably, when subjected to boiling temperatures for many minutes, it thickens. Therefore it works well with warmed fillings.

However, since the flour adds its flavor to the recipe, expect some minor changes in flavor. In addition, wheat flour might have a little disadvantage – it makes the filling murky. This might not be a good option if this is a consideration.

Also, suppose you are trying to make a gluten-free pie or any other gluten-free recipe requiring a substitute for minute tapioca. In that case, wheat flour isn’t an acceptable option because it contains gluten.



You can mix the Cornstarch with the sugar that will go into the pie filling to avoid lumps. Then add this mixture to your filling after that. Notably, high temperatures are the best for thickening cornstarch.

However, this isn’t a viable option if you plan to freeze your pie because cornstarch-based pie filling tends to become spongy when frozen.

Two tablespoons of minute tapioca can be replaced with one tablespoon of Cornstarch. Before adding Cornstarch to the liquids in the recipe, form a paste with the cornstarch and a little water. Your pie filling won’t be as thick and shiny as it would be if you used tapioca, but it will still be delicious.

Notably, Cornstarch works better with dairy-based recipes; tapioca, on the other hand, works better in frozen meals than Cornstarch.

All-Purpose Flour

All-purpose Flour


In most recipes, all-purpose flour can be used in place of minute tapioca in a 1:1 ratio. However, the texture may alter depending on what you’re preparing. For example, to avoid lumps, combine the flour with the sugar or salt before stirring it into the wet ingredients.

Minute tapioca produces a bright, glossy finish when used as a thickener for gravies, soups, and sauces. Meanwhile, when thickened with all-purpose flour, these dishes will have a rough surface and a duller color.

Maybe, you’ll most likely need to change your cooking time as well to fit. Minute tapioca has no flavor and mixes fast. Still, all-purpose flour requires more cooking time to remove its powdery texture when fresh.

However, you have to keep in mind that all-purpose flour contains gluten. As a result, if you’re attempting to make your dish gluten-free, it’s not a good substitute for minute tapioca.

Potato Starch

Potato Starch


Minute tapioca can be replaced with potato starch, which is gluten-free. However, it will result in a thicker consistency. Depending on what you’re cooking in your recipe, it may also result in a denser product.

Nonetheless, you can switch it in a 1:1 ratio if you’re using a tiny amount to thicken a sauce or stew. However, a little more guesswork is required when using a greater quantity for something like a baking mix.

When substituting, you should reduce “the required amount of tapioca flour” in your recipe by roughly 25–50 percent. Then, to make up the gap in overall volume, substitute the tapioca with “this amount of potato starch” and add a little more of any other flour-like ingredients.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can you substitute Cornstarch for minute tapioca?

Minute tapioca and Cornstarch can be substituted in equal amounts. Half the Cornstarch or two teaspoons of minute tapioca can be substituted for one tablespoon of flour in a recipe.

Are tapioca and Cornstarch the same?

The basic distinction between tapioca flour and Cornstarch is the method of production. As you might expect, Cornstarch originates from corn, but tapioca flour comes from the cassava plant’s root.

Can coconut flour substitute tapioca?

Yes, coconut flour can be used in place of tapioca flour in a recipe. This is because tapioca flour and coconut flour are relatively similar. Therefore they may be swapped for one another.


Tapioca is a starch derived from the cassava plant’s roots. Sauces, pies, and puddings are thickened with it. It is usually available in little pearls. However, minute tapioca is a finer form of tapioca.

Minute tapioca achieves better results when used in puddings and pies or tapioca starch, which is used to coat fried meals or thicken sauces.

If you don’t have any minute tapioca on hand when you need it, you can use a few different substitutes instead. Although, changing the thickener you’re using can affect your food’s texture, appearance, and flavor – losing the essential consistency.

Moreover, these minute tapioca substitutes are used in pie fillings and other similar recipes. However, they may not be the best substitute for minute tapioca in some recipes, such as tapioca pudding or bubble tea, that specifically requires it.