Low-Carb Pasta Alternatives
For this post, I decided to experiment with a few of the low-carb pasta substitutes from Pinterest. What I found was that you cannot expect to find anything that has that perfect texture and feel of a real pasta noodle.
It’s also important how it looks and acts when it’s topped with a sauce. To me, a good strand of pasta will easily wrap around a fork and stay together as you twirl it. Then, when you take that bite, you have that perfect, al dente chew that is not too mushy and not too hard.
A good pasta, boiled in salted water, should be able to stand alone or be topped with a protein and sauce, making it such a versatile food. However, with all the focus on carbohydrates these days, I can say that eating a huge bowl (or two) of spaghetti, as I did back in college, is a rare occurrence. So, instead, I try to find substitutes that will trick my mind into feeling like I’m indulging, sending a message to my brain that I got what I wanted. 🙂
One of the quick fixes I came across is Palmini pasta which is actually hearts of palm that can be used straight out of the can. It’s nice to have on hand, and with little preparation required, you can have your “pasta” in seconds.
There is a different texture to it, much like eating a semi-raw vegetable, so some people prefer to boil it for a few minutes. I’ve also heard of it being rinsed with milk to remove the slight bitterness of the palm. I don’t notice it too much, so I simply rinse the strands in water and heat them up in the microwave or on the stovetop in a small pan.
I’ve tried to boil it, but honestly, I could not tell that it was any softer. At about $5 a can, it’s not something I eat regularly, but it is nice because there are variations such as linguini, lasagna, and angel hair. I’ve enjoyed using the sheets as well, and it made quite a good lasagna. I will try the angel hair soon since I see it’s now available here: Amazon.
Keto Egg Noodles
One low-carb pasta substitute I attempted was from an easy recipe for Keto Egg Noodles. Overall, it was visually appealing and it tricked my mind into thinking I was about to eat pasta – I was excited! However, once I took a bite, I could immediately tell it was made of eggs because of the soft feel.
Additionally, it was very fragile and broke easily when trying to twirl it around the fork. If you look closely at the picture of the egg noodles I made, you can see the texture is very light and eggy. On the other hand, it wasn’t a bad version either and it helped to know that it contained protein.
It definitely absorbed the flavors of whatever I put on it, and it was quite simple to make with the help of my Personal Size Rocket Blender. One tip is that if you pour the mixture on the silicone liner and it runs all over, like mine did at first, just pour it back into the blender and add a little more cream cheese. It should stay put so that you can use a knife to spread it out. This would also be great for small toddlers because of the soft texture.
3-Ingredient Keto Pasta
The next pasta recipe I tried was a 3-Ingredient Keto Pasta. I have to say that if you’re looking for a low-carb pasta substitute that has body to it, this is a good one to try. There is no baking required, and essentially, it’s made of cheese!
Now, that being said, I don’t recommend eating large portions of this, and you won’t want to load a bunch of cheese on top of it because then it’s just cheese on top of cheese. However, if you have some sauce as I did, it’s a great way to feel like you’re eating an actual pasta dish.
I even fluffed it a bit and it didn’t stick together or break. It also passed the twirl test! What’s nice is that all it takes to warm up is a little heated sauce. You should never boil or microwave too long. Ultimately, it was very easy to make and came out pretty delicious!
Note: I didn’t have any psyllium husk, so I substituted it with wheat gluten and it still turned out just fine.
So for all of you who are conscious of your carb intake, see what you think about these recipes. Do you have an alternative that you prefer? Let me know what you think about the one here, or tell me about a recipe that you’ve tried and love – I’d be happy to check it out as well!