Eat Pasta Run Fasta: 5 alternatives to pasta
We love their versatility, simplicity, taste and use them for energy; with tomato sauce or pesto, arrabiata, aglio e olio, carbonara... Pasta is one of our staple foods and for some, pasta is love!
However, in order to ensure a balanced diet, you should think outside the box every now and then and add some variety to your diet. You still don't have to give up pasta! Browse through our 5 alternatives - there's sure to be one for you!
1. Zoodles or vegetable noodles
On your mark, zoodle, go!
It's worth investing in a spiral cutter if you want to start making noodles out of zucchini (or other vegetables). With only 19 calories per 100 grams of zucchini, it's a cheap and healthy alternative to pasta. You can eat them with pesto, sauces or as a side dish and even get an extra portion of vitamins! Simply cut them into fine strips with a spiral slicer and cook them in salted water for 2-5 minutes. If you don't like zucchini, you can also use other vegetables such as carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkin or kohlrabi. There are no limits to your imagination!
2. Lentil noodles
They are red and keep you full for a long time: red lentil noodles.
They are made from dried red lentils that have been processed into flour and serve as a vegetarian protein source. You can now find them in almost every supermarket and combine them just like "normal" pasta. Whether with tomato sauce, bolognese or vegetables, this pasta is a low-carb side dish that is quick and easy to prepare.
Tip: You should cook them exactly according to the package instructions, otherwise they will quickly become too soft and fall apart. Foaming on the cooking water is normal due to the saponins contained in pulses and does not affect the taste.
3. Chickpea noodles
Chickpea noodles are also made from protein-rich pulses. They also give you fibre, are low in fat and keep you satiated for a long time thanks to the unsaturated fatty acids. Chickpea noodles, like lentil noodles, are available in well-stocked supermarkets. Most of the time they are even "shelf neighbours". A noodle that provides you with important minerals such as magnesium and iron and is very versatile. Try it with sautéed vegetables and pesto, or with a spinach and mushroom sauce. Again, don't exceed the cooking time stated on the packet or the noodles will easily lose their shape.
4. Konjac noodles
There is no danger of tipsiness here!
The pasta made from durum wheat is not replaced by alcohol, but by an Asian root: the konjac root. While this type of noodle is not a novelty in Asia, it is also slowly arriving as a lower-calorie version here in Europe. At 8 calories per 100 grams, the noodles are not only low in calories, but also gluten-free, fat-free and vegan. They come in a type of packaging that is unusual for us, namely plastic wrapped and floating in a liquid. You should sieve this off and rinse the noodles well before preparing them. Afterwards, they are tasteless and can be used for Asian dishes as well as with savoury sauces. You can find them in well-stocked Asia shops, probably under the name Shirataki Noodles.
5. Soba noodles
These noodles have also been used in Asian cuisine for a long time. You may already know soba noodles from Japanese food without having consciously noticed it. They have a brownish colour and are made of buckwheat. Therefore, they have a subtle nutty note. They go perfectly with wok dishes and creamy coconut or peanut sauces. In addition, for the cold season, you can simply cook them in broth and refine them with spring onions. They are rich in zinc and magnesium and have a high protein content, which is especially beneficial for athletes. You can get soba noodles in well-stocked supermarkets or in the Asian market.
Have fun trying them out and enjoy your meal!
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