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8 low-carb substitutes you didn’t know you needed

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We’re always looking for healthier alternatives in the kitchen, especially if it means getting more veggies into our tummies. That’s probably why cauliflower everything has become such a rage these days—if we can trick ourselves into thinking we’re eating a healthier version of our favourite comfort food, we’re usually all in.

But let’s be honest: we’re kind of looking to move on from cauliflower rice, zoodles (zucchini noodles) and spaghetti squash pasta right about now. While there’s certainly a place for these veggies in our hearts, it’s time we started exploring some more creative veggie substitutions, don’t you think?

In that vein, here are some of our favourite, full-flavour ways to make classic comfort foods with fewer carbs and more veggies.

Jicama taco shells

Taco night just wouldn’t be the same without… well, tortillas. So while it’s all fine and well to just throw your taco toppings into a big old salad, we’re even bigger fans of this brilliant taco shell alternative that uses thinly sliced jicama pieces instead. Now that’s a delicious, low-carb win.

 

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Turnip fries

We’ve heard of sweet potato fries, parsnip fries and regular old French fries. But when it comes to healthy veggie alternatives that are low-calorie and low-carb? Well in that case it’s baked turnip fries FTW.

 

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Broccoli tater tots

Everyone loves the spud-tastic childhood side dish, but it isn’t exactly the healthiest dinner plate option. Enter broccoli tots, which combine cheese and broccoli in a kid-approved way, making them the perfect offering for the whole family. Gives yours a little more oomph by adding them to a bona fide skillet pie.

 

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Spiralized carrot pasta

You don’t even really need a spiralizer in order to create carrot “pasta,” not when you’ve got a good kitchen knife. Either way we’re fans of this idea, because carrots have a much lower water content than zucchini, giving your veggie pasta that al dente bite you know and crave.

 

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Beet crust pizza

Are you tired of cauliflower everything—including cauliflower pizza crust? Luckily it’s equally easy to fire up the oven with some beet pizza crust instead, adding a heartier flavour and 100 per cent more colour to your next homemade ‘za concoction.

 

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Portobello mushroom buns

Ditch the burger bun the next time you grill up a meaty patty, and wedge it between two grilled Portobello mushrooms instead. Be warned that the ‘shrooms can be a touch watery, so best to scrape off the gills and salt them before cooking. This hack is also plenty filling, so you may want to just do an open-faced mushroom-burger instead.

 

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Eggplant lasagna

Cheese, meat, veg… they all taste just as good in eggplant “noodle” lasagna as they do in the traditional kind. Be sure to thinly slice your eggplants in advance, salt them and let them sit for 20 minutes or so in order to absorb some of that moisture. Then layer them as you would traditional no-cook lasagna noodles for pasta perfection.

 

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Bell pepper nachos

If it were up to us we’d eat nachos at least once a week—there’s no beating that awesome combo of melty cheese and salsa on a crunchy vessel. Fortunately, that vessel doesn’t necessarily need to be a tortilla chip in order to be delicious. As savvy vegetable users have proved, bell peppers are the perfect low-cal, nacho chip alternative.

 

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