10 foods to try if you want to cut down on carbs

Zucchini noodles are a popular carb-free pasta alternative. iStock

Low-carb diets have definitely gained a lot of attention as of late, especially with the rise of the keto diet. Fortunately, there are plenty of tasty foods that are also low in carbs.

Here are some low-carb alternatives for higher-carb foods, according to registered dietitians.

Add cheese crisps to your shopping list.

You can also bake your own version. iStock

“Cheese crisps can be a low-carb alternative to crackers made with grains,” said registered dietitian Summer Yule, MS, RDN.

Whisps crisps and Moon Cheese are two of many brands that are worth trying, she told INSIDER.

Give cauliflower rice a try.

It can be made using a food processor. Nataliya Arzamasova/Shutterstock

“Cauliflower rice is a great low-carb, nutrient-dense substitute for rice when you are looking to save some calories,” registered dietitian Sara De Luca, RD, CPT told INSIDER.

You can find it pre-made in the frozen aisle at the grocery store or you can make your own with a food processor, she added.

Swap pasta for zucchini noodles.

They’re a popular substitute for pasta noodles. Flickr/diversey

“For the feeling of a pasta dinner without the refined carbohydrates, I definitely recommend zucchini noodles,” registered dietitian Kelsey Peoples, MS, RDN, told INSIDER. Zucchini, in particular, is incredibly low-carb and is high in minerals like potassium.

Read More: 6 pasta alternatives to try if you want to cut down on carbs

Get creative with cocoa powder.

It’s easy to sprinkle on top of almonds. Flickr/Jackie Sobon

“If you are craving chocolate, sometimes a little cocoa powder can hit the spot,” Peoples told INSIDER. She suggests misting walnuts or almonds with olive oil and then coating them with unsweetened cocoa powder for a sweet treat.

Try jicama or parsnip fries.

Parsnip fries can be cooked until crispy. Flickr/mealmakeovermoms

“Roast jicama or parsnips to replace fries,” registered dietitian Alicia Galvin Smith, MEd, RD, LD, CLT, IFNCP told INSIDER.

She suggests slicing jicama or parsnips into strips, tossing them with oil, seasoning them with salt, cayenne, pepper, and cumin, and then roasting them until crispy.

Zucchini chips are a great snack.

They will help satisfy your salty cravings. Flickr/ultrakml

“Instead of snacking on high-carb potato chips, try making zucchini chips instead,” said registered dietitian Jenn Fillenworth, MS, RD. They crisp up without being fried, which means they typically have fewer calories and saturated fat than fried potato chips.

Whip up hash browns with yellow summer squash.

Shredded squash can be a great substitute for shredded potato. Flickr/watashiwani

“Try substituting grated yellow summer squash for your usual shredded potato,” said Fillenworth. Plus, it’s fairly low-carb at less than five grams of net carb per squash.

You can mix shredded squash with egg and form the mixture into crispy hash brown-like patties.

Use pistachios as croutons.

They’re a flavorful salad topping. Casey Fleser/Flickr

“Nearly 90% of the fats found in pistachios are the better-for-you mono and polyunsaturated type,”nutritionist Rania Batayneh, MPH told INSIDER.

Pistachios are a great substitute for higher carb croutons on a salad, she added, as they provide a good source of plant protein and fibre that can help keep you fuller longer.

Stick with high-fibre carbohydrates.

Beans have quite a bit of fibre. Shutterstock

“Oftentimes, people consume large portions of pasta, rice, or cereal because these types of carbohydrates are easily overeaten,” said registered dietitian Jillian Kubala, MS, RD.

High-fibre carbohydrate sources like veggies and beans fill you up more quickly, reducing the chances of overeating, she suggested.

Add low-carb vegetables to your diet.

Cauliflower is fairly low in carbs. AnemoneProjectors – Peter O’Connor/Wikimedia Commons

“For those who want to try reducing the overall amount of carbohydrates in their diet, try filling up on fibre-rich, low-carbohydrate veggies,” Kubala told INSIDER.

Kubala suggests vegetables such as brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, and leafy greens.

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