10 Pasta Substitutions
Last updated: June 2023
Pasta is often a favorite food and household staple, but many people with diabetes tend to avoid it due to its effect on blood sugars. Whether it’s the extra large portions, sauce, or side of garlic bread, it may be difficult to include in your meal plan. Luckily, there are many pasta substitutions available to try that still allow you to enjoy pasta without sabotaging your sugars. If you own a spiralizer, you can turn many of your favorite vegetables into low carb noodles that are a great swap or fun side dish.
Below are ten substitutions to traditional pasta including some favorite brands that are not only healthy, but yummy too!
1. Butternut squash
Tastes great spiralized, chopped up and roasted with olive oil and sage. It is also an excellent source of vitamin A, C and Potassium. (One cup of cubed squash contains 82 calories, 22 g/carbs, and 2 g/fiber).
2. Spaghetti squash
Can be prepared in your oven, microwave or crock-pot. Once it is cooked you can shred with a fork to get your spaghetti like strands! Substitute for your favorite spaghetti suppers. (One cup of cooked spaghetti squash contains 42 calories, and only 10g/carbs)
3. Carrot noodles
Can be made at home using a spiralizer or can found in frozen food section. (Green Giant Carrot Veggie Spirals 1 cup 7g/carbs, 3g/fiber)
4. "Zoodles" or zucchini noodles
Toss with some olive oil and garlic and pair with additional vegetables and protein (1 cup contains 4g/carbs, 0g/fiber, and 1g/protein)
5. Cauliflower Gnocci
I have only seen this available at Trader Joe’s, so if you live near one, I strongly suggest trying this! It tastes great with some marinara or pesto (1 cup of cauliflower gnocchi contains 22g/carb, 6g/fiber)
6. Shirataki noodlesThey may not have much of a taste, but are certainly filling for zero calories! These can be a great substitution in stir fry, or with olive oil and some seasonings. They can often be found in the refrigerator section in most grocery stores (Miracle Noodles- 3 oz. contain <1g/carb, 0g/fiber, 0g/protein) 7. Black bean spaghettiIn addition to the high protein and fiber content, it is an excellent source of potassium! (Explore Cuisine Black Bean spaghetti 2 oz. contains19g/carb, 11g/fiber, 25g/protein)8. Chickpea pastaAlthough it is made from chickpeas, it tastes very similar to traditional pasta and is also loaded with fiber and protein (Banza pasta, 2 oz. serving contains 32g/carb, 8g/fiber, 14g/protein9. Lentil pastaBoth red and green lentil pastas are available and taste great tossed with a marinara sauce and vegetables! (Tolerant Red Lentil Penne contains 3 oz. 53g/carbohydrates, 11g/fiber and 21g/protein)10. Sprouted PastaThis sprouted grain pasta is also a good source of fiber and protein. (Food for Life Ezekial 4:9, 2 oz. contains 39g/carbs, 7g/fiber and 9g/protein)Have you tried any of these or other substitutions for traditional pasta? Share with the type 2 community!
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