Food & Drink Magazine

Yummy Veggie Subs for Refined White Foods

By Becca @glowgetterbecca
A few weeks ago I posted about foods that can have a negative effect on your skin (and general) health. The list included white flour-based foods, including pasta, white potatoes and bread. Since then, I've discovered lots of innovative alternatives to these simple carbs. Being a meat eater, one of my biggest challenges is making sure I get the right meat/vegetable/starch ratio in my meals. The substitutes listed below not only help you to cut down on simple carbs, but also to get more vegetables and nutrients into your diet.

1. SWAP: Spaghetti or Noodles for Zucchini/Courgette (Zoodles!)Yummy Veggie Subs for Refined White Foodsphoto: Love & LemonsZucchini/courgettes can be a great substitute for spaghetti or noodles. This is ideal, because it's an easy way to get a massive serving of veggies. You can make zoodles with a spiraliser or a julienne peeler, like this one. I found a great step by step guide to making zoodles, here. I can't wait to try out these two recipes: Zucchini Coconut Noodles and Spaghetti with Beef Sauce. For a really quick dinner, I think these would be delicious tossed with garlic and chillies in olive oil.

2. SWAP: Rice for Cauliflower Yummy Veggie Subs for Refined White Foodsphoto: The Londoner

This is a completely new (and delicious) discovery for me. I’ve never been a big fan of cauliflower, but when I saw this recipe on The Londoner’s blog, I had to give it a try. It is so delicious – totally recommended as a healthy and filling dinner option. To make cauliflower rice, all you have to do is grate it. I used a very non-fancy hand grater with no difficulty, but if you have a food processor with grater attachment then the process will be even quicker. Everyday Maven also gives a great step by step for making (and storing) cauliflower rice, here. One tip I would add is to dry fry your "rice" first as it is quite moist when you first grate it. I grated it all up then fried it, stirring for a few minutes in a pan to evaporate some of the excess water.

3. SWAP: Fluffy White Potatoes for Waxy Varieties
Yummy Veggie Subs for Refined White Foods
photo: iVillage

White potatoes, in their roasted, chip, mashed or basked forms, have a high GI, which means they cause a glucose spike (bad for skin). The best way to eat white potatoes is to boil a waxy variety, like new potatoes. Waxy potatoes have a lower GI (it's basically the fluffiness you want to watch out for). I love to serve skins-on boiled baby new potatoes tossed in a little olive oil and garlic with salmon fillets or lamb chops.

4. SWAP: White Potatoes for Sweet Potato
Yummy Veggie Subs for Refined White Foods
photo: BBC Good Food

These are great mashed or cut up and roasted. When I make mashed sweet potato, I like to add a little coconut oil and coconut milk instead of butter and cow's milk. This recipe goes down very well at my house. You can even bake them like you would a normal baking potato (see this link for recipe ideas, but ignore the recipes using white potatoes). If you’re cooking a roast, you could roast a load of mixed vegetables, like sweet potatoes, carrots and onions, instead of your usual white roast pots.

5. SWAP: Mashed Potatoes for Cauliflower
Yummy Veggie Subs for Refined White Foods
photo: Wanna Bite

As well as being a great rice alternative cauliflower can also be a substitute for mashed potatoes. I haven’t tried this one yet, but after my success with the rice I’m definitely up for it! Get the recipe for the above photo, here.

BONUS... if you can find it! Spaghetti Squash
Yummy Veggie Subs for Refined White Foods
photo: The First Mess

I can’t find this one in the UK anywhere, which is SO annoying because I really want to try it! When cooked, the flesh of the spaghetti squash shreds into long strands that look like thin spaghetti or vermicelli noodles (hence the name). Here are some instructions on how to prepare it. It looks like spaghetti squash can be used as a direct replacement for pasta with any sauce. These two recipes look amazing: Spaghetti Squash with Sausage and Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl + Lime Peanut Sauce. Let's hope I get to try them sometime soon.


I'm getting very hungry writing this post! Have you tried any of these? And do you have any other great swaps that I've missed off my list?

xxDisclaimer: These photos are not mine. Check out the links below each photo for the credit and recipe.

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