You may choose to avoid wheat pasta or carbs if you’re on a low-carb pasta diet, don’t tolerate gluten, or simply want to avoid bloating and uncomfortable after eating. As we are also familiar with the fact that pasta is a versatile food eaten across many cultures. However, it’s also notoriously high in carbs, which most people might prefer to limit.
But if you choose not to completely abandon the delicious pasta and sauces that come with it, you may be interested in low-carb substitutes.
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The deal with traditional pasta
Although pasta is one of the most important types of low-carb diets and plans to eliminate cereals, including paleo and Whole 30, eating pasta can be complicated if you don’t have gluten, diabetes, or pre-diabetes.
The good news for noodle lovers? It is not necessary to give up spaghetti and meatballs entirely. Moderation is the solution. You can always reduce pasta in low-carb by observing portions.
How can I choose a low-carb pasta alternative?
Instead of completely avoiding foods rich in the carb that provide basic energy, I advise you choose smarter options that contain fewer pure carbs and contain nutrients like fiber and protein. Taking an instance, nutrient-dense alternatives that contain low-carb pasta such as legumes-based pasta are the best alternative to traditional white noodles as said by Kirkpatrick.
Just make sure you read the nutritional information on the back of the package. Most times, “counterfeit foods” may be less healthy if packed with processed or loaded with extra sodium and sugar, as warned by Isabelle Smith, RD. The best option is to choose pasta that contains only one or two ingredients.
Here are 15 awesome low-carb alternatives to pasta and noodles.
1. Cauliflower Couscous
You might have heard people talking about using cauliflower as a replacement for rice. But you can easily replace couscous.
Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable with a lot of potential health benefits, having a lower risk of certain cancers. It’s rich in fiber and low in carbs. It is also rich in folate, and vitamins C, E, and K.
Cauliflower contains 4 grams of carbs per 3.5 ounces (100 grams), 13% more than pasta. To use as a couscous substitute, break the cauliflower and place the florets through a food processor until they are grated in rice-sized pieces.
The pulse function works better, as you don’t want to mix too much. Sprinkle some oil in a large pan and reduce couscous for 1-2 minutes. Then cover with a lid and prepare it for an additional 5-8 minutes, or until cooked.
The finished product can be used as couscous in recipes. This is one of the best low-carb pasta.
Tips: Cauliflower is a low-carb alternative to couscous. It is nutritious and may offer more health benefits.
2. Cabbage Noodles
Not all consider using cabbage as a noodle replacement, But it’s a deceptively simple alternative.
With about 6 grams of carbs per 3.5 ounces (100 grams), they are particularly low in carbs. Incredibly, this amount of cabbage provides 54% of daily reference intake (RDI) for vitamin C and 85% of RDI for vitamin K.
Cabbage is also a good source of folate acid and contains a variety of other vitamins and minerals.
You can always use whole cabbage leaves as a substitute for lasagna leaves. Instead, cut the head of the cabbage into thin noodles to use on a Thai or lo mein. Have it in mind that the leaves closest to the core are very difficult and can be bitter.
Once cut, put the cabbage into boiling water for about two minutes. If the lasagna is used, the cabbage leaves will be ready when they can be folded easily without breaking. They will cook more in the oven, so do not boil for a long time.
If you are using pasta noodles for something other than a baking dish, remove them from the water when they are soft enough to hold them with a fork. This is one of the best keto pasta for healthy living.
TIPS: Eggplant is a popular low-carb, nutritious substitute for pasta in lasagna recipes.
3. Eggplant Lasagna
The eggplant comes from India. Although it is considered a berry vegetable, it is consumed more like a vegetable. An eggplant portion of 3.5 ounces (100 grams) contains about 9 grams of carbs, which are about 3.5 times less than carbs for the same amount of pasta (2, 14).
It is also a good source of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, especially vitamin K, thiamine, and manganese. To prepare eggplant lasagna, start cutting the delicious nightshade into thin slices.
Then put the sides with oil and grill the slices until soft and golden, then spin once. Use these slices of roasted eggplant instead of pasta slices when making lasagna. You can also skip the roasting step and use raw slices directly if you prefer a more moist dish.
TIPS: Eggplant is a known low-carb, nutritious replacement for pasta in lasagna recipes.
4. Spiralized Vegetables
In recent years, spiral vegetables have invaded the world of cooking, and rightly so, it provides an easy and attractive way to add more vegetables to your diet.
Spiral vegetables are those that are cut with a spiral apparatus, a kitchen appliance used to cut vegetables into long capillary-like noodles. Many vegetables can be helical, but the most common are zucchini, carrot, turnip, beet, and cucumber. In addition to being less than 3-10 times the carbs of pasta, this vegetable noodle is also an excellent source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
Adding extra vegetables to your diet can be very beneficial and can reduce your risk of many diseases, including heart disease, diabetes, and even certain types of cancer. Eating more vegetables can also help you lose weight.
To make spiral vegetables you will need a spiral, although you can use the vegetable peeler alternately. Do not peel the vegetables, because the peel is where the vegetables store most nutrients.
Spiralized vegetables can be eaten cold or warm. If you’d like to warm them, toss the vegetable noodles in boiling water for 3–5 minutes until cooked but still firm — known as al dente. Overcooking will make them lose their crunch.
Spiral vegetables can be eaten cold or hot. If you want to heat it, mix the pasta with vegetables in boiling water for about 3 to 5 minutes until they are soft but still firm, popularly known as al dente. Too much cooking will cause them to shrink. This is also one of the best low-carb pasta sauces for healthy living.
TIPS: Spiral vegetables provide a nutrient-rich option and can be eaten hot or cold.
5. Spaghetti Squash
Spaghetti is an excellent alternative to pasta. These starchy vegetables have originated in North and Central America and have yellow-orange flesh.
Once cooked, its body can be separated with a fork in strings that looks like spaghetti pasta, hence the name.
With 6.5 grams of carbs per 3.5 ounces (100 grams), spaghetti squash contains only about 20% of the carbs you expect with the same amount of pasta.
It is richer in vitamins A, C, E, and K, and majorly B vitamins.
To prepare it, prick the spaghetti squash in several places with a fork, then bake for 30-45 minutes at 350 ℉ (180 ℃).
Spaghetti can also be boiled for 20 minutes, or cut into slices and a half of a microwave oven at a height of 6-8 minutes.
Once ready, make use of a fork to separate the body into spaghetti strings and make a sauce.
TIPS: The spaghetti can be boiled, cooked in the microwave, or baked, and provides a great, nutrient-rich solution to the spaghetti noodles.
6. Tofu Noodles
Tofu noodles are different from traditional Shirataki noodles. They are made from a combination of tofu and glucomannan fiber and provide just a few calories and carbs.
Buy this noodle and package it the same way you will do it with shirataki noodles.
Tofu is very rich in protein and beneficial plant compounds and can protect against health diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes, and some types of cancer.
Tips: The tofu noodles are made from a well-known soy-based meat best option and pack plenty of protein into your dish.
7. Shirataki Noodles
Shirataki noodles are long white noodles, also known as konjac or pasta noodles.
It is a popular low-carb substitute for pasta because it is really filling yet has few calories. It is made of a type of fiber known as glucomannan, which originates from the konjac plant.
Glucomannan is a soluble fiber, which means it can absorb water and form a sticky gel in the intestine. This slows the digestion process, which can help you feel full for a longer period.
Soluble fibers provide food for intestinal bacteria, which produce short-chain fatty acids (AGCC). SCFAs are believed to help reduce inflammation and increase immunity.
Shirataki noodles are very easy to prepare. It simply loosens and rinses thoroughly with hot running water to remove the liquid and heat it. Then add the sauce of your choice.
Alternatively, you can heat the pasta in a pan. This will remove some of the excess water and convert the natural noodle tissue into macaroni-type tissue. This is also among the best keto past for healthy living.
TIPS: Shirataki noodles are a very low-carb and low-calorie pasta substitute. It is also rich in soluble fiber, which can help you feel full for a longer period.
8. Onion Noodles
Onions are a delicious but uncommon alternative to pasta.
It contains 1/3 of regular pasta carbs rich in fiber, vitamin C, B6, folate, potassium, and phosphorus.
Onions are also a great source of flavonoids, which provide health benefits, such as low blood pressure and better heart health.
Glue the onions, peel them, and cut them into slices of 1/4 inch (0.5 cm), then separate each ring and place them on a large roasting pan. Moisten with oil, salt, pepper, and grill for 30 minutes, or until the onions begin to brown. Stir in the middle of the roast.
Finally, put your favorite sauce and decorate it.
TIPS: Onion is a delicious low-carb substitute for pasta. It is rich in nutrients and beneficial plant compounds that can improve your health.
Sprouts are seeds that have grown and become very young plants.
Many kinds of seeds can germinate. For example, sprouts can be made with grains, peas, vegetable seeds, beans, nuts, and other seeds.
The nutritional content of the sprouts varies according to the type of seed. However, the buds are generally low in carbs and rich in protein, magnesium, phosphorus, folate, manganese, and vitamins C and K.
They vary from 7% for alfalfa sprouts to 70% for lentil sprouts of pasta carb content
The propagation process also tends to lower the number of natural antioxidants in the seeds. This makes body buds easier to digest
To replace the pasta with sprouts, first, boil gently for a few seconds, then remove them almost immediately. Then, turn the cold water over your sprouts to quench the cooking process. Dish with your favorite sauce.
It should be noted that outbreaks are often associated with an increased risk of food poisoning. Be sure to buy fresh and properly refrigerated sprouts to help reduce the risk of foodborne illness. This is also among the best low-carb pasta sauce.
TIPS: The buds are a very fast pasta alternative: low carb, rich in nutrients, and easy to digest. Buy fresh and refrigerated buds to reduce the risk of food poisoning.
10. Celeriac Couscous
Celeriac originates in the Mediterranean and is associated with celery. They are tubers with a spicy celery flavor.
Celeriac is rich in phosphorus, vitamin C, manganese, vitamin B6 n C and vitamin B6. Carbs contain slightly more carbs than 6 grams per 3.5 ounces (100 grams). However, it is still a healthy alternative to pasta.
To prepare celeriac, cut the vegetables into tiny pieces. Then, follow the same process for cauliflower, then cut it into the food processor and stir until tender.
TIPS: Celeriac is another low-carb substitute for couscous, which is savored with celery strength and provides abundant phosphorus and other nutrients.
11. Seaweed Pasta
Seaweed pasta is a low-carb noodle substitute.
It simply consists of harvested, rinsed, and dried seaweed. Therefore, it will add a sea-like flavor to your dish.
While algae are naturally low in calories and carbs, they are full of minerals. It is a particularly rich source of vitamin K, magnesium, folate, calcium, and iron. It also provides a good dose of iodine according to the group. Algae average about 30% of the carbs content of pasta wheat.
The varieties of algae used to replace pasta are naturally similar to spaghetti or fettuccine. For cooking, put it in boiling water for 5-15 minutes or until the algae have the desired stability.
Instead, try steaming pasta with seaweed for 20 to 35 minutes. This allows them to maintain a firmer consistency.
TIPS: Seaweed is a colorful replacement for pasta. Have it at heart that it will surely add a sea-like flavor to your dishes.
1/2 cup cooked quinoa = 20 grams carbohydrate.
Quinoa is one of the grains with the biggest fanfare, all thanks to its protein content (8 grams per cup) and fiber (5 grams per cup). But remember, just because it’s a higher-protein grain doesn’t mean it’s super low in carbs. 1/2 cup of cooked quinoa has 20 grams of carbohydrate, so make sure to plan that into your day and stick to a 1/2 cup serving. This is among the best low-carb pasta.
13. Collard greens
Cup: 4 grams of carbs, 4 grams of fiber.
Very low in calories and very high in fiber (in addition to folate, which is an essential nutrient for prenatal women!), Pink vegetables are underestimated but rich in nutrients and very satisfying.
To add some drilling, fry them in a pan with onion and garlic, suggests Dana Hunnes, MR, Ph.D., principal dietitian at the Ronald Reagan Center – University of California. Or, under green vegetables, instead of wrapping wheat in your turkey sandwich for a low-calorie alternative, Scarlata suggests.
14. Bolognese Zoodle Bake
Bolognese is a deliciously savory mixture of meat and pasta sauce that makes the perfect meal in keto. However, eating it without pasta does not work. Fortunately, this sauce works well with zucchini hair.
At first, you might think that zucchini is the last thing you want with Bolognese sauce, but when you shape it and bake it, you’ll never need wheat-based pasta again.
15. Eggplant and Bacon Alfredo
Still not a fan of zucchini noodles after trying the recipe from the past? Try the eggplant noodles instead. Its spongy texture is ideal for absorbing sauce and fat without becoming too watery or too greasy.
In this Keto recipe, eggplant noodles will absorb all the delicacies, giving you every taste of Alfredo in every bite. In addition, it will nourish your body with the benefits of eggplant as well. This is also one of the best keto pasta for healthy living.