If you are getting bored or frustrated with the ketogenic diet, it might just be about the types of food you are eating. Eating the exact same thing every day can get old very quickly, so it might be time to find some other good options that are still keto-friendly.
Are There Flour Alternatives for Baking?
If you want to do some baking while on keto, you still can! Many people think all baked goods and breaded fried foods are out, but that isn’t the case. While you won’t be making them the same way as you used to, there are still some flour alternatives that you can use if you are on a low-carb, high-fat diet like keto.
The first type of flour that is a good low-carb alternative to traditional flour is coconut flour. This is often preferred by people to almond flour, but you should really try both varieties until you find one you like the best. As you know, coconut is often used for keto recipes, from coconut oil to coconut milk, so why not the flour? This flour is made from dried coconut flesh that is then milled and ground extremely fine into a flour. A little goes a long way, so keep that in mind if you are cooking or baking with it. About ¼ cup of coconut flour is 6 grams of carbs, but it also has 10 grams of fiber, so it is a great choice.
If you have ever purchased a low-carb baked good, there is a good chance it was made with almond flour. This flour is finely ground, processed from blanched almonds. This is done by removing the skins first, then getting it into the finely-ground flour you want for your baked goods. Almond flour has more protein and fiber than white and wheat flour, so it is a healthy option. There is also the added benefit of important nutrients like potassium and magnesium. However, some people have problems digesting the flour, so that is something to keep in mind. You get about half the amount of net carbs of almond flour than with coconut flour.
Both almond flour and coconut flour need to be refrigerated, since it can go bad much more quickly than regular flour. This is due to the processing it goes through. If neither of these work for you, there is also the option of using ground seeds as your flour option, such as sunflower seeds. Some of the newer packaged low-carb baked goods are using sunflower seeds instead of one of these flowers, as it changes the nutrients and works better with some people’s digestion systems. Sometimes it is just a matter of experimenting.
What is Nutritional Yeast?
Nutritional yeast may sound like something you bake with, but it is actually used as a flavoring component for many ketogenic meals and snacks. It tastes like a nutty type of cheese, so you can do everything from top salads to add it to your soups. Here are some things to know about this unique ingredient.
About Nutritional Yeast
So, what is nutritional yeast exactly? It isn’t actually the type of yeast you bake bread with, in order to get it to rise. This is actually a type of yeast that grows on molasses. It is then deactivated so that it loses its leavening ability, similar to regular yeast. With a silly name, it might seem like a silly ingredient, but it has many excellent benefits. It is only recently when people on the ketogenic diet have discovered how and why it is useful to them in particular.
Why it is Beneficial
Nutritional yeast gets its name from all the health benefits it contains. Before talking about how you can use it for keto, let’s look at the basic health benefits of this ingredient. Nutritional yeast contains a high amount of B vitamins, including B1, 2, 3, and 6, or thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, and pyridoxine, respectively. It also has a good amount of fiber, protein, B12, and folic acid. This is all in just a tablespoon of the yeast.
How to Use it for Keto
For keto, the reason nutritional yeast is a good ingredient is because it provides a lot of fiber, protein, and a cheese-like ingredient without actually using dairy. You might be lactose-intolerant or you may not want to use dairy quite as much, making this perfect. It is in powder form, so it is the perfect way to replace parmesan cheese in recipes. You can top soups or salads, or cook and bake with it. A single serving of nutritional yeast is just 1 grams of net carbs since it has 4 grams of fiber. It is also low-calorie, yet moderate protein amount at 8 grams of protein per serving.
Health food stores are the best places to get nutritional yeast, since you can get it in its purest form. As with all ingredients you use, check to make sure it hasn’t gone through processing where it might have added ingredients. You want it to be the most natural possible. Many health food stores also offer nutritional yeast in bulk.