Swap in these 5 healthy dinner alternatives when your comfort food cravings kick in
While a certain amount of carbohydrate is an important part of a healthy, well-rounded diet, a nightly bowl of spaghetti carbonara probably isn’t a good idea - tasty yes, but unless you’re doing an adequate amount of exercise to offset the glycogen levels your body will store, it will eventually convert into adipose tissue - or as we like to call it, fat.
The problem is however, when you’ve had a hard day at work and it’s a little chilly outside or you’re just simply starving, there’s often nothing better than a steaming bowl of perfect pasta to soothe the soul.
All is not lost though, as here at GTG HQ we like to ensure that the taste and health of our food gets equal attention. So, we’ve been scouring the supermarket shelves to provide you with some healthier alternatives for when the comfort cravings kick in. Here are our top fives pasta-esque picks that pack in the flavour but a little more guilt-free. Now that’s amore.
1. Doves Farm Organic Brown Rice Pasta, £2.49
The perfect option for gluten-free phobes, this Doves Farm pasta is ideal for those who are wary of anything but the real deal.
Award winning and uber popular, it’s created using carefully selected organic grain which is milled and mixed with just the right amount of water to make an authentic pasta dough. Tasty, simple to make and without wheat, gluten, dairy and peanuts, this rice based dish is genuinely as nutritious as it is delicious.
2. Dell’Ugo Chickpea Fusilli, £1.79
Having been making gluten-free pastas since the 1960s and coming first place in the ‘FreeFrom Foods awards Innovation’ category last year, it’s no wonder that this chickpea creation has made our cut.
Positively brimming with health benefits this Dell’Ugo Fusilli is a brilliant source of soluble fibre, a high quality protein, and has a low glycaemic load, which means it’s great for weight-loss as part of a calorie-controlled diet. If that wasn’t enough, their subtle nutty taste and super soft texture means when warmed through with pesto they also make a devilishly delicious dish.
3. King Soba Organic 100% Buckwheat Noodles, £2.09
For a more asian twist why not opt for a scrumptious bowl of steaming soba noodles. Made with 100% buckwheat they are high in manganese and magnesium, which is particularly good because it relaxes blood vessels, improves blood flow and nutrient delivery, all while lowering blood pressure - the perfect food to help maintain a healthy cardiovascular system. Not to mention, they’re also 100% gluten free, which means they’re great for those who are wheat-sensitive.
We love these served in a Japanese style soup, or lightly stir fried with meat and vegetables for a heartier, more wholesome dish.
4. Courgetti Spaghetti, £1.75
A household favourite here at GTG, courgetti spaghetti is the hip and healthy pasta alternative that’s championed by every blogger, nutritionist and celebrity out there - and it’s easy to understand why.
Super cheap and easy to make, all this dish takes is a couple of courgettes and our favourite kitchen tool, a spiralizer. Simply whizz up a courgette, mix in some pasta sauce - a voila, a green veggie alternative that’s packed with vitamin C, potassium and is super low calorie. Did we mention it also tastes incredible?!
5. Bionita Gluten-free Spinach Gnocchi, £1.55
With a squishy potato filling, these little dumplings of deliciousness are a slightly more indulgent treat - however, their rice and corn flour ingredients mean they do come with a friendly gluten-free tag.
Lovingly crafted in the sun soaked region of southern Italy, the added touch of spinach also means you get your daily dose of good greens. Combined with a fresh tomato sauce and a sprinkling of parmesan, this is one of our favourite stodgy saturday night meals.