Alternatives to Bread: 6 Amazing Ideas to Try Now

“Bread can be healthy – it can be a good carb – you don’t have to take it out of our diets.”

Don’t worry, I agree with you. You don’t HAVE to take bread out of the meal rotation. But do you know FOR SURE that your body can tolerate it?

There is a substance in many breads called gluten. Gluten is the name for the proteins found in wheat, that assists various foods in maintaining their shape, like a “glue” that holds food together.

However, many bodies are sensitive to this protein. It causes bloating,  inflammation, and pain in their digestive systems. And many people have absolutely no clue that they might have this sensitivity. (PSA: If you’re hurting and don’t know why, stop reading this and make an appointment for your doctor! Please!)

That is why you’ve got to take a hiatus from eating bread all the time.

Uh-huh. I already hear the collective groan from many of you through this post. “This woman is taking away my bread?! What am I supposed to sop up the extra sauce from the zoodles I made for dinner today?”

Never fear – Clarissa is here to help!

I have found 6 really interesting and surprising tasty bread alternatives that I think you should add to your sandwich, roll, and burger rotation this week. Read on to find out what they are:

  1. Lettuce. This makes excellent sandwiches that have no calories and no fat. Wraps can be created out of all large types – Bibb, endive, Romaine, red leaf, green leaf, and iceberg lettuce.  Even the fast food sub shop Jimmy John’s has hopped on this train. Their “un-wich” is their specialty meats and veggies wrapped in a couple of lettuce leaves.
  2. Portobello mushroom caps. Mushroom caps are perfect “buns” for hearty meats like burgers and chicken. These powerhouses are full of vitamin B,  fiber, potassium,  and protein. Rinse the tops well, pop any stem piece out of the center, and place on an oiled baking pan. Preheat oven to 450 degree. Place portobello caps on a small baking sheet gill side up and drizzle extra-virgin olive oil on them. Roast the caps 12 minutes at 450 degrees. Remove them from the oven and season them with salt and pepper. Put your burger or chicken on one “bun”, add condiments, and top with the other “bun”. Yummy!
  3. Cucumber. Cucumber is the new trend for lighter sandwiches such as tuna salad, chicken salad, and even thinly sliced meats with mustard or mayo. Wash the cucumber thoroughly,  peel the skin off, cut lengthwise into two halves, and hollow out the insides of the seeds. The hollow is a perfect place for your sandwich ingredients. Now, I’ve seen people do both open-faced sandwiches and regular double cuke sandwiches. I’ve only done the open-faced version, myself. Try both and let me know what you think.
  4. Cauliflower crust. You can make your own “bread” with cauliflower. It takes work, but it is so worth the effort for a light bun with just a few calories and the benefits of cauliflower.  The Iron You Blog has all kinds of recipes for cauliflower. This particular recipe is the one I love, but it definitely takes work (Let’s just say I used a whole roll of paper towels and two cheesecloths that day….).
  5. Collard green leaves. This, like lettuce, also makes a delicious wrap. However, unlike lettuce, it is SUPER tough (and bitter) eaten raw. In order to make this green palatable for sandwiches, you have to boil the leaf for about 30 seconds, then dunk into an ice bath to stop the cooking. This link has an excellent recipe for this process: How to Prep Collard Green Leaves
  6. Sweet potato. What?!? Yes, sweet potatoes can make incredible sandwiches and buns. For sandwiches, cut them lengthwise about ¼” thick, place on an oiled baking sheet, and bake for about 25-30 minutes in a preheated 400 degree oven. Or for small buns, cut them widthwise, place on an oiled baking sheet, and bake for 15-20 minutes in a preheated 400 degree oven. (Oh yeah, and you can use these babies to sop up that sauce from your zoodles. You’re welcome.)

 

I really hope that these ideas, once you try them, will be a welcome part of your meal prep in the future.

Looking for more delicious ideas to drop the pounds from your frame? Click here to be a participant in our upcoming sugar detox challenge.

 

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