As much as we love carbs, they can completely derail our fitness goals – and energy. Yet, you might consider yourself an avid pasta lover and find it to be quite the obstacle to skip over this particular ingredient in your meals completely. Luckily, there are amazing substitutes to pasta, including vegetable-based “noodles.” Chopped and prepared to mimic the real deal, veggie noodles are as hearty as they are delicious. If you aren’t sure how to prep them, however, you could run into a whole other issue. So, follow these tips below to get started.
Zucchini and cucumbers are great choices for first-timers. These veggies can be spiralized and then cooked similar to angel hair pasta. Cook until barely tender, 1 to 2 minutes, then drain. Spaghetti squash is another great vegetable noodle option. Once cooked, its flesh is easily separated into strands that look and act almost like spaghetti pasta.
Other starchy vegetables like butternut squash and sweet potatoes also make great subs for spaghetti. Spiralize them and cook them until tender. Try them another way by pulsing them into a mash similar to grits. Simmer with a cheesy sauce, toss with sautéed vegetables, or top with cooked shrimp.
Finally, eggplant makes an excellent substitute for lasagna noodles. Slice them lengthwise, so each slice resembles a thin plank. Pan sear until softened if enjoying immediately. If placed into a casserole or baking dish, like lasagna, salt the slices to eliminate any excess moisture, let dry, and layer them in as usual.
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