Cauliflower Could Be a New Grain
Bread and grains are dietary staples, yet many people stress out because they are concerned about gluten, calories, or glycemic index associated with these foods. What if cauliflower could be a new grain?
It’s not such a far-fetched idea, and in fact one company has already introduced two cauliflower grain products to the market. This article isn’t about that company but rather the feasibility of such an idea which, if it catches on, could mean more cauliflower “grain” items on store shelves or more opportunities to use the vegetable in everyday recipes.
Why is cauliflower a good grain substitute?
First of all, this cruciferous vegetable is a great source of fiber, potassium, folate, and vitamins C, K, and B6. It’s also provides sulforaphane, a phytonutrient with antioxidant and cancer-fighting capabilities.
Then of course there’s the no-gluten factor and the lower calories, but that depends on how you prepare it. For example, if you make cauliflower rice (made by grating or pulsing the veggie in a food processor), the number of calories compared with regular rice is significant.
One cup of cauliflower contains a mere 25 calories while 1 cup of brown rice provides 218 and barley has 193. If you are counting carbs, compare the 5 grams in one cup of raw or cooked cauliflower with the 46 in the same amount of brown rice and 45 grams in barley.
If, however, you smother the vegetable with butter or cheese or deep fry it, then you also pile on the calories and fat.
Cauliflower as a bread or grain substitute
A company called Outer Aisle makes cauliflower sandwich thins, which can be used to make sandwiches and as a tortilla; and cauliflower pizza crust. Both of these products are made with fresh cauliflower, parmesan cheese, eggs, clean label cottage cheese, and sunflower lecithin, while the pizza crust has added herbs.
In addition to the benefits already mentioned regarding choosing cauliflower as a grain substitute, there’s also the child factor. Each serving of these products provides one to two servings of vegetables, which is great if you are trying to get your kids to eat more veggies.
You don’t need to turn to these commercial products, however, if you want to enjoy the taste and health benefits of cauliflower as a bread or grain substitute…or more! There are dozens of recipes showing you how to use cauliflower in creative ways that will satisfy from breakfast to dinner.
For example, you might start your day with a cauliflower breakfast “cereal” that is basically the veggie, almond milk, and a few natural sweeteners. The simple recipe for this cauliflower breakfast treat is here.
Or you could try cauliflower steak (recipe here). You can enjoy the steaks on their own or use them as the base of an open sandwich, topping them with your favorite sandwich fixings. If you love mashed potatoes but not the calories, then whip up cooked cauliflower instead.
Cauliflower is a super substitute for grains and a versatile veggie that can be used in a wide variety of ways. Are you ready to make cauliflower a part of your daily menu?
Image courtesy of Pixabay