For many people, a healthy diet means avoiding common food allergens such as wheat and dairy, or maybe eliminating artificial foods from your pantry and refrigerator. If your diet has some restrictions, it’s time to get creative with your recipe-planning. With food replacements and substitutions, you can cook for a food allergy or dietary restriction without sacrificing taste and flavor.
If you’re trying to bake your famous banana bread without gluten, you can use almond flour or brown rice flour instead of white flour, or tapioca flour or white rice flour instead of wheat flour. Amaranth grain can be used to be make gluten-free pasta, and quinoa is a complete protein that’s a perfect substitute for rice. To avoid chocolate, try using carob powder instead- it’s sweeter and less rich anyway!
Speaking of a sweet tooth, you can easily eliminate artificial sweeteners from your diet by using sugar substitutes such as fructose, erythritol, xylitol, or brown rice syrup. Agave nectar is a great replacement for honey or maple syrup, and for a quick burst of energy before a sporting event, try dextrose.
To cook your food healthfully, you can replace corn or soybean oil with options like macadamia nut oil, olive oil, rice bran oil, or virgin coconut oils; these oils can also be used in salad dressings or sauces. If you need an allergen-free thickening agent, try agar powder to replace eggs or white flour, or guar gum powder or xantham gum powder instead of wheat.
Finally, for vegetarians and vegans who are concerned with their protein intake, buttermilk and soy milk powders will provide protein, and dry roasted soybeans are a great on-the-go snack that are both delicious and high in protein. Really missing meat? Use textured soy protein to make veggie burgers, veggie chili, soups, casseroles, and more.
When trying to improve your diet, a fear of cooking with new ingredients should be the last thing to stop you. Using this infographic of quick tips, you can easily plan for successful and healthy lifestyle.