Best fruits and vegetables to substitute carbs in your diet

Best fruits and vegetables to substitute carbs in your diet

Smart swaps

Text: Corinne Cheah

Food Network

Don't get us wrong, we love our carbs. Rice, pasta, anything with starch — we're game. Unfortunately, it's not entirely the best choice for our waistlines. Hence, some changes need to be enforced — with these delicious fruits and greens that do a solid job of subbing the carb role in your diet. Besides packing a swathe of nutritional benefits, these troopers are hearty, filling and won't leave you craving for anything more. 


The cauliflower is often overlooked and not given enough credit due to its white pasty appearance and rather tasteless flesh. But it's time to give the cauliflower its long-overdued acknowledgment for its simplicity and versatility. Try making a cauliflower crust pizza and top it off with your favorite ingredients. For those who love their daily fill of rice, give cauliflower rice a go. Given that they have similar textures, you might not even notice the difference. 

Nutritional benefits: Good source of choline that boosts cognitive function, improves learning and memory. High in antioxidant and phytonutrients such as vitamin C and beta-carotene.

Cauliflower rice


The deep purple-colored fruit is popular because of its adaptability in dishes. Like a sponge, aubergines soak up the moisture and flavor of the dish, converting the previously bland fruit into one bursting with flavor. All of us love a rich, layered lasagna but with pasta sheets alternating every layer, that can be worrying for those watching their weight. We love the idea of substituting pasta sheets with aubergines, making the dish waistline friendly.

Nutritional benefits: High in fiber and low in calories, aiding in weight loss. Phenolic compounds help improve bone health, along with significant amounts of iron and calcium.

Aubergine Lasagne

Portobello mushroom

The portobello mushroom isn't just a fab choice to replace carbs, but also ideal for those on a meat-free diet. Large and flat, they make ideal burger buns substitutions. Additionally, their flavor profile makes portobello mushrooms a superb alternative to meat and other burger ingredients. Moreish, yet guilt-free. 

Nutritional benefits: A great source of B vitamins, especially in niacin (vitamin B3) and riboflavin (vitamin B2) which aids in the maintaining of high energy levels cognitive health and helps the body recover from stress.

Portobello mushroom


We are sure you have heard the term "zoodles" — a word play comprising of zucchini and noodles. Invest in a good spiraliser and you'll be able to fix up this beautiful spiraled pasta alternative. It packs a slew of nutritional benefits that are great not just for the weight watchers but for the young ones as well. Another alternative to try? The courgetti, which essentially combines courgettes (other term for zucchini) and spaghetti. 

Nutritional benefits: A good source of health-protecting antioxidants, which improves eye health and reduces the risk of developing age-related eye conditions. Rich source of B vitamins especially folate, riboflavin, and B6 which boost energy production in the body.


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