All purpose flour, bread flour, cake flour and coconut flour are some different types of flour. All purpose, bread and cake flours are most commonly made from wheat.
All-purpose flour is the most commonly used type of flour in the United States. This flour is made from soft and hard varieties of wheat and usually has a protein or gluten content of between 8 and 11 percent. All-purpose flour is available in bleached and unbleached varieties. Bleached all purpose flour is chemically treated and contains slightly less protein than unbleached.
Bread flour is made from hard wheat and is higher in protein than all purpose flour. This flour has around 14 percent wheat gluten, and lends baked goods a strong, chewy texture. This flour is ideal for use with yeast.
Cake flour is a soft wheat flour with a lower gluten content and a higher starch content than all purpose or bread flour. This type of flour is chemically processed to make it more acidic. This added acidity improves the texture of cakes and other baked goods with a high proportion of sugar and fat.
Coconut flour is a type of flour that is made from ground dried coconut meat. This flour contains no gluten, and is lower in digestible carbohydrates than wheat flour. Coconut flour absorbs a significant amount of liquid, therefore bakers using coconut flour may need to add more liquid to a recipe to compensate.