How To Eat Low Carb As Vegan
I have been posting more plant based meals on my Instagram lately and received a lot of messages asking me to share some tips on how to maintain a low carb diet while eating vegan meals. People often assume that a vegan diet is high in carbohydrates because the first few things that comes to their mind are fries, pasta and beans. This is definitely not the case so I put together a few useful tips to help you maintain a low carb diet while eating a plant based diet. Make sure to check out my articles on my favorite dairy free products and the best dairy free “milks”.
Add Complex Carbs – carbs are one of your body’s primary sources of energy and they aren’t the enemy when eaten right. Complex carbs like quinoa, lentils, buckwheat or apples contain fiber and are more filling. They take longer to digest and are good for people with type 2 diabetes because they don’t spike up blood sugars. Try my baby bella stuffed with pesto and vegan mozzarella and stuffed portobello mushrooms with quinoa, pine nuts and pomegranate.
Avoid Simple Carbs – simple carbs are typically found in processed foods. An example is simple syrup, dairy milk, fruit juice, packaged crackers, cookies and some cereals.
Make Smart Choices – if your planning on having lentil bolognese serve them with spiralized vegetables instead of regular pasta. The lentils and pasta will quickly add up calories and carbs. The spiralized veggies are 6-10 times lower in carbs than pasta and they are also great sources of fiber, vitamins and minerals.
Non Starchy Vegetables – non starchy veggies are low in carb and high in fiber. The following are some of my favorite: artichokes, asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, green beans, zucchini, cucumbers, eggplant, bell peppers and brussel sprouts. Try my cauliflower couscous salad with arugula and asparagus.
Low Sugar Fruit – the following fruits are low in sugar and high in fiber: pears, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and kiwis. Avocados are also a great option as they are low carb, high fiber and packed with healthy fats which will keep you full for longer. Try my beautiful berry muesli.
Nuts & Seeds – they are low in carbs but high if fats and proteins. For example, chia or basil seeds. Most of their carbs are fiber, so almost all of the usable calories in them come from protein and fat. Try my overnight chia seed pudding with berries.
Soy Products – Foods like tofu & tempeh are high in protein and fat, but low in carbs. Soy crops are heavy sprayed with pesticides so always choose organic soy products. I love this organic soybean fettuccini and often use it for a high fiber, low carb (only 5g net carbs) substitute to pasta.
Pizza – cauliflower crust
French Fries – baked sweet potato fries
Rice & Beans – cauliflower rice & beans
Tacos – lettuce tacos
Pasta – zucchini noodles
Ravioli – zucchini ravioli
Lasagna – palmini lasagna
Chocolate – dark chocolate
Chips – seaweed snacks