Carb-rich foods are a popular fixture in various households. In fact, many of us have grown used to bread, pizza, potato chips, and sodas.
But the good news is, we can always shift to healthier options without totally sacrificing our favorites! Apparently, there are tons of low-carb vegetables that make a great substitute for many of our cherished dishes!
And because we’re eager to help, we’ve made a list of the top 10 low-carb vegetables that’ll satisfy your carb cravings while keeping you healthy! Grab your pen and paper and list down these handy nutritious upgrades!
Cauliflower is a rich source of vital nutrients and unique plant compounds. Because of its amazing nutritional profile, cauliflower helps to reduce various health conditions such as heart diseases and even cancer.
It's also beneficial for your weight loss efforts, and it’s pretty easy to add to your diet, too!
How to add cauliflower to your low-carb diet:
Cauliflower rice is probably not a secret anymore. You can swap your traditional rice with this healthier option. Cauliflower mimics the flavor and texture of the white rice common to all of us.
What's more, this veggie easily absorbs the flavors you season it with! Be it a bowl of Asian fried rice or Spanish paella, cauliflower makes a great rice substitute!
2. Swiss Chard
Chard or Swiss chard is a green leafy veggie whose stalks are often prepared separately from its leaves. It boasts a rich, robust, and complex flavor that is highly prized in French and Italian cuisines.
Also called leaf beet, spinach beet, and seakale beet, chard comes in different varieties with some having pink, red, yellow or white stalks.
How to add swiss chard to your low-carb diet:
Everybody adores tortillas, especially if you’re someone who loves burritos, tacos, and enchiladas. But, most tortillas contain flour, wheat or corn, which is not suitable for certain weight-reduction plans such as the Paleo diet.
Luckily, you no longer need to sacrifice your enchilada cravings as swiss chard is here to the rescue!
This veggie is not only low in carbs but is rich in nutrients too such as vitamins A, C, and K. The happier news is that it’s sturdy enough to wrap your favorite fillings!
Zucchini is a summer squash that is botanically a fruit. But, in a culinary context, zucchinis are treated as a veggie, often cooked as a savory meal or side dish.
It is well-known for its weight loss powers while giving your diet a nutritional boost. Zucchinis are also a great source of vitamins and minerals that help promote eye health and prevent diseases from occurring.
How to add zucchini to your low-carb diet:
Rejoice, pasta lovers! You don’t have to give up your pasta cravings just yet. Zucchini proves to be the better choice for those who want to keep a low-carb diet.
Instead of grabbing the traditional pasta, you can create twisty zucchini noodles with the help of a spiralizer or a vegetable peeler for thick ribbon-style noodles!
Make a healthier pasta meal by drizzling zucchini noodles with tahini bacon sauce or add them to your Greek pasta salad recipe.
4. Portobello Mushroom
Portobello mushrooms are a favorite in the healthy-living community. They are typically added to meals (even pizzas and burgers have them) or used as a substitute for their less nutritious peers.
They have low calorie and high fiber content and contains essential nutrients and phytochemicals that are beneficial for your health.
How to add portobello mushroom to your low-carb diet:
Portobello mushrooms are an excellent choice for people who want to maintain a low-carb diet. They have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that help keep your brain and digestive health in check.
You can stuff your protein-rich burgers and yummy sandwich slices with portobello mushrooms to satiate those cravings!
Your mom was right about carrots being good for you. Carrots are a rich source of nutrients, antioxidants, and fiber, which help lower the risk of cancer and other cardiovascular diseases.
Packed with vitamin A, carrots are also known to promote better eye health.
How to add carrots to your low-carb diet:
Who said you need to say bye-bye to fries completely? You don’t because carrot fries are here! If you’re craving for something that’s starchy and crisp but contains fewer carbs, look no further than carrot fries!
You can bake this healthier pick with avocado olive oil or coconut oil, and then season it with your favorite herbs and spices!
Pumpkins are a part of the Cucurbitaceae or gourd family, native to North America. It is especially known during Halloween and Thanksgiving.
Like zucchinis, pumpkins are botanically fruits as they contain seeds. But, they are commonly treated as a veggie. Aside from its delicious flavor, pumpkins are highly nutritious, too! Its seeds are particularly prized for its generous health benefits.
How to add pumpkin to your low-carb diet:
Pumpkins make a great substitute for sweet potatoes, which are higher in carbs. A cup of pumpkin contains eight grams of carbs as opposed to sweet potatoes’ 27 grams of an equal serving.
You can make a yummy pot of pumpkin soup or power up your baked goods and pasta dishes with this delish squash.
Kale belongs to the cabbage family along with broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, and collards. This leafy green is considered a superfood due to its impressive nutritional content.
Packed with important vitamins and minerals, kale is a yummy and healthy addition to your low-carb diet! Kale is also rich in iron and powerful antioxidants, making it the perfect detox food that can optimize your overall health.
How to add kale to your low-carb diet:
Potato chips are a popular go-to snack for so many people. Aside from its addicting taste, it is highly convenient too as they’re available almost everywhere!
But they are unfortunately rich in unhealthy carbs. The great news is you can still snack on something good in the form of kale chips!
What’s more, these chips are baked and can be flavored just the way you want it. In fact, you can mimic the taste of your favorite chips by adding the same herbs and spices to perk up its flavor.
Making it to the list of the best low-carb veggies is no other than asparagus! This nutrient-dense veggie is prized for its therapeutic properties and other impressive health benefits.
Asparagus can even benefit your weight loss efforts! This superfood is packed with fiber, and other essential nutrients such as vitamins A, C, and K.
Several studies even concluded that asparagus can help prevent the risk of various health problems such as urinary tract infection, diabetes, and cancer, and improve your mood and sex drive.
How to add asparagus to your low-carb diet:
Asparagus can be added to your dishes in so many ways! In fact, you can simply sauté, roast or grill it. You can also enjoy it in your salad and pasta dishes.
Just remember to cook it moderately so you can preserve its nutritional benefits.
Spinach is another leafy green veggie that offers extensive health benefits. This veggie is also packed with essential nutrients that promote heart and eye health among others.
A cup of cooked spinach also boasts 10 times more the recommended daily intake (RDI) for vitamin K. Spinach also has a lower carb content, with only three grams per serving.
How to add spinach to your low-carb diet:
Seriously, who doesn’t love pizza? But the thing is pizzas are high in carbs -- most of it can be found in the crust. Fret no more, though, because you can still enjoy your favorite savory dish without having to worry about the carbs!
Presenting the spinach-based crust, a healthier alternative to your regular pizza crust. The best part is, you don’t need complex ingredients to make it plus it’s super easy!
To make your spinach-based crust, you only need a food processor, baby spinach, an egg, mozzarella cheese, and basil or oregano to taste. Prepare and bake for less than half an hour and your spinach pizza crust is good to go!
Lettuce is one of the lowest-carb veggies you can find around. It is low in carbs and high in essential nutrients such as calcium, folate, potassium, and vitamin C that offer key benefits for your overall health and wellness.
Not only is it healthy, but delicious, too! Lettuce’s refreshing crunch adds that special texture to any dish!
How to add lettuce to your low-carb diet:
Lettuce soup, what? Yep, it’s possible! Stirring lettuce into your soups gives it a layer of texture and sweet taste. It’s also one of the easiest ways to get your green serving! Lettuce also makes a great wrap. Koreans particularly enjoy it in their samgyeopsal.
A low-carb diet doesn’t necessarily mean giving up your favorites altogether! These ten low-carb veggies will still let you enjoy your food cravings – only the healthier way!
You can also search for a low-carb vegetable chart for more nutritious veggies you can add to your meal plans and tasty recipes.
You can list down what appeals best to you and incorporate them into your dishes the next time you invade your kitchen. They’re not only delicious, but they also help improve your health!