If you are diabetic or are on a Keto or Low Carb or Gluten Free diet, you may have thought that you can never eat pasta again.
I’m diabetic and used to do everything I could to resist pasta … then one day I would break down and have a huge plate of spaghetti and meatballs, driving my blood sugar levels through the roof. It would take days to get normalized again.
When I found out about Konjac or Shirtaki Noodles, my life changed.
ZERO net carbs (the noodles DO have some carbs, but they are offset by the fact that the carbs are all fiber, resulting in the net effect of zero carbs)
LOW, LOW calories most brands have 10 or under calories per serving)
NO effect on your blood sugar levels
How perfect can that be!
What are Konjac or Shirataki Noodles?
Konjac noodles are a healthy alternative made from the Konjac plant. The Konjac plant is native to warm, tropical parts of Asia. It’s popular in East Asian cuisine and known for it’s health benefits, which include normalizing blood sugar levels, lowering cholesterol levels and lowering high blood pressure.
In Japan, the Konjac tuber is used to make dozens of food products, including Shirataki noodles which are found in most Asian markets.
This pasta alternative is a godsend to anyone with Diabetes and to anyone on low carb diets. Compare a one cup serving of spaghetti containing a whopping 43 net grams of carbs, to a similar size serving of Konjac noodles with ZERO carbs. NO contest … ONE cup of spaghetti contains more carbs than most Keto diets allow you in a full DAY!
When I first starting eating Konjac noodles, all the brands I tried had a horrible stinky smell. This is due to the brine used to preserve them. All you had to do is take a deep breath, pour off the preserving liquid and rinse the noodles in cold water. The smell goes away and does not affect the taste of the noodles,
The good news is that over the years, several brands have developed NO smell noodles. You still open the container, pour off the preserving liquid and rinse under cold water.
IF you are used to eating various kinds of oriental noodles, then Konjac noodles will be no surprise. A few people who are used to only North American or European pastas find the texture of the noodles to be rubbery and off putting. If you are one of these people, my advice is to try several brands. There are brands that come very close to the texture of spaghetti. ***You will get less of a “rubbery” texture if you heat them on a stove surface instead of in the microwave.
Konjac noodles are easy to cook with. All you have to do is warm them up. They readily absorb liquids and the flavor of any sauce you put them in.
I remember the first time I tried Konjac noodles. I was used to HUGE servings of pasta … we’re talking 3 to 4 cups of spaghetti, or huge slabs of lasagna. I looked at the noodles in my sieve and felt cheated. The package said “two servings.” I thought it looked closer to a quarter of a serving.
I made myself a Chinese stir fry and was very surprised when I had to stop eating three-quarters of the way through my plate. I was FULL and satisfied. Now, a two-serving package makes me two meals … and is a FAR cry from a plate with 4 cups of spaghetti.
Where Can You Get Konjac Noodles?
Some (not all) health food or organic food markets carry them. Look both in the refrigerated units, and in the regular food aisles where the rest of the pasta is shelved. MOST Konjac noodles do not have to be refrigerated, can be stored in a kitchen cupboard and have a shelf life of a year or more.
If there are Chinese or Japanese food markets in your area, check there. Ask for Shirtaki noodles and be sure to read the ingredients (Konjac) and the calorie and carb numbers to make sure you have the right noodles.
Most websites that sell low carb foods will carry both Konjac noodles and Konjac rice. My favorite site is Amazon. I have an Amazon Prime membership so I get free shipping … and I order a couple dozen packs at a time.
Here are two of my favorites. I think both of them taste great. Just to let you know … I am an Amazon affiliate and make a few cents when you make a purchase using my links. This is what keeps this site going.
Try this variety pack, you’ll get 6 Bags: (2) Angel Hair, (2) Rice, (2) Fettuccini I like the Angel Hair best and love the rice! This is a best seller with over 4000 reviews.
My only problem with these noodles is the manufacturer’s claim that they are the only odor free noodle available. Simply NOT true.