Personally I prefer to eat wheat pasta but for those who have Celiac disease or just prefer to eat gluten free there are alternatives you probably haven’t heard of or seen before. A lot of time people also want to avoid carbs so some of these will be alternatives for that as well. Pasta, noodles or any sort of starch is a staple in my diet and I just love trying a variety to see how they might taste. Here is a comprehensive review of 10 gluten-free alternative pastas I have tried.
Black bean pasta from Explore cuisine can be just as satisfying in terms of bite when compared to wheat. Not only is the bite satisfaction there but it also takes less time to cook. It cooks in 4-6 minutes compared to 10 minutes which makes that food get into your belly just that much quicker. You can add your favorite sauce or you can use some garlic, olive oil and diced heirloom tomatoes for a lighter flavor. It has 25 grams of protein and 17 grams of carbs for a 2 oz serving which is a ridiculous amount.
There is also the option of Mung bean and adzuki bean pasta from the same company. Each of them have a slightly different taste and texture. You could try them all on a bundle from Amazon and find out which one you like best (click the title link). I definitely taste the bean flavor in it, however there is a ton of protein in beans and other legumes so to eat it in the comforting pasta form is pretty nice. Again there is a great amount of protein with 25 grams in the mung bean pasta and 21 grams in the adzuki bean pasta per 2 oz serving.
I bought the Lundberg brown rice pasta at Whole foods, which has now been acquired by Amazon. I suppose this is positive since the foods are now all available on the internet. The brown rice pasta is probably one of my favorites, it takes about 9 minutes to cook and has no residual flavor like the bean pastas. I like the taste and the texture, however the amount of protein is slacking at 4 grams per 2 oz serving. I do feel that there is not as much bite and is a bite softer than wheat, but if you are gluten free it is a great alternative with most likely the closest taste to wheat pasta.
This one was a little different, the pasta texture and taste was definitely an adjustment but I believe it has a great deal of protein at 13 grams per 2 oz serving. It’s not quite as much as the beans but certainly more than the more grain-like pastas. Chickpea pasta has almost a meaty flavor to it and the texture is a bit more starchy. The flavor is there but subtle enough that your favorite sauce can mask it if you don’t like the flavor. It takes about 8 minutes to cook al dente and just tastes kind of “ok.” Not great but I might have hyped it up since I was really excited to try it. I love chickpeas and hummus and that flavor is definitely there but the texture is not my favorite.
5. Quinoa Pasta
I tried Ancient Harvest quinoa pasta before and it was not great because of how crumbly the pasta turned out, but then I tried a different brand called Andean Dream and it was amazing. It is on par with the brown rice pasta, but a bit more starchy. The protein content is a bit greater than brown rice pasta as well, at around 6 grams per 2 oz serving. This is probably my go-to pasta alternative for all the great reasons however it does take a bit longer to cook at about 13 minutes.
6. Lentil Pasta
Lentil pasta has a nice chewy texture that is almost like boba (tapioca) and I really enjoy that. It does have a residual bean-like taste but that seems typical of the pastas made from legumes. I actually prefer the texture of the lentil pasta to the black bean since it has a bit more bite. It has 13 grams of protein per 2 oz serving which is about double wheat pasta and quinoa pasta. If you want to go for a happy medium for greater protein intake and better texture I would suggest to try the lentil pasta.
7. Corn Pasta
Corn pasta is mostly for taste, since corn is one of my favorite grains. I would say that the flavor is sort of like eating noodly tortilla. It does not have much protein and is quite starchy at 48 grams of carbohydrates per 2 oz serving but it tastes quite good. It’s also one of the cheaper alternatives at around $2 a box. The other alternatives can run from $4-$8 a box. I recommend corn pasta since it is still somewhat healthy and the noodly tortilla absorbs sauce flavors well.
I really love the brand De Cecco. The pasta they make is just well done and the texture is always a perfect al dente. I am not entirely certain it is gluten free, I believe Miracle Noodle does have a gluten-free spinach pasta <click link to check it out. I tried that one once and I feel that it was a little bit rubbery. I definitely preferred the De Cecco. The additional spinach in the pasta does not change the taste much and it is a great way to add some vegetable vitamins and minerals into your diet.
Zoodles are zucchini noodles or just spiralized zucchini. You could spiralize almost any vegetable and put it with your favorite pasta sauce. This is a low-carb gluten free option and it is completely guilt free as well. You can have as much as you want with barely any calories. You could get a spiralizer here and make them regularly.
10. Potato Pasta
Gnocchi is another way to have gluten free Italian cuisine. I think it is doughier but still delicious nonetheless. It does take while to cook but I think it’s well worth it. Another potato-ish pasta out there that I have not tried is sweet potato pasta. I am not a huge fan of sweet potato so I am probably going to try it when it’s on someone else’s plate but I would assume the texture to be good when eating it. It seems like the potato adds a little bit of the starchy texture and is not grainy. There is a mixed potato and rice pasta from Italy that gets the texture just right by making it a little more bouncy. The brand is bionaturae.
That’s all the pasta’s I have tried so far, I hope you enjoyed my review of the various gluten free pasta alternatives. Definitely check some of these out and if you do use the links I created for each type of pasta. They are Amazon affiliate links. Let me know if you’ve tried some of them before in the comments or just comment on what you’re most excited to try, I’d love to hear from everyone.
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