Bread Substitute: 5 Easy Low-Carb Options You Can Make Yourself
Whether you’re just starting your keto journey or you’re already a keto veteran, bread is probably one of the main things you miss most. It’s such a versatile and comforting food. But this high-carb staple isn’t exactly keto-friendly. Could there be a keto bread substitute that you can enjoy?
The answer is yes.
Even though freshly-baked bread might be hard to turn down, there are multiple reasons why you should avoid it on keto.
While the exact macronutrients depend on the type, you can assume most servings of bread (two slices) run anywhere from 30-40 grams of carbohydrates, 8 grams of fat, and absolutely zero protein — not exactly ideal for a low-carb diet or if weight loss is your goal.
On keto, you should keep your daily carb count to roughly 5% of total calories. The daily percent values for protein and fat should be roughly 20% and 75%, respectively.
The high ratio of carbs to fat and protein in bread can cause your blood sugar to spike. This may lead to insulin resistance, which is the root cause of diabetes[*].
While insulin resistance is not fully understood, there is strong evidence showing insulin resistance may promote weight gain[*]. Bread can also be a detriment to those with celiac disease and other autoimmune issues.
Keto-Friendly Bread Alternatives
These gluten-free and keto bread substitutes are good for you and easy enough to make at home. Get ready to indulge your bread cravings while reaping the benefits of keto.
Cloud bread — also known as “oopsie bread” — is an easy, grain-free, and gluten-free bread that’s light and airy in texture. This fluffy bread alternative can be used as a burger bun, sandwich bread, tortilla, or pizza crust.
When it comes to nutrition, cloud bread is one of the most popular keto-friendly options. One serving contains just 35 calories, less than 1 gram of net carbs, 2 grams of fat, and 2 grams of protein.
Its fat content comes from the cream cheese and whole eggs, which are powerhouses of saturated fat and nutrients, such as phosphorus and potassium[*].
Make It Yourself
You don’t need to be a great baker in order to make this cloud bread recipe. It takes less than an hour to prepare and requires just four ingredients — eggs, cream cheese, cream of tartar, and salt.
The trick to give this bread substitute its cloud-light texture is separating the egg yolks from the egg whites. When you whip them at high speed with a hand mixer, the egg whites form stiff peaks which will make the bread fluffy and airy once it’s baked.
Almond flour is an excellent substitute for regular white bread flour, and can easily be found in health stores or online on Amazon. Almond flour is an excellent source of healthy fats, vitamin E, manganese, and magnesium[*].
It might be the best keto bread substitute with just 1.6 grams of carbohydrates and 1.6 grams of dietary fiber, resulting in zero net carbs[*].
Make It Yourself
Almond flour is the key ingredient used in this Perfect Keto almond flour bread recipe.
To make it, you‘ll need almond flour, eggs, baking powder, olive oil, poppy seeds, and a loaf pan. It contains just 4 grams of total carbohydrates, or 2 grams net carbs per serving.
Since the recipe calls for a handful of eggs, this keto-friendly bread is a powerhouse of protein and healthy fats and delivers a serious amount of important nutrients like lutein and zeaxanthin.
These vitamins have been shown to possess natural anti-inflammatory properties while playing a crucial role in eye health[*][*].
Coconut flour is an ideal ingredient for any keto bread substitute because it’s so dense in healthy, saturated fats. Just two tablespoons of coconut flour contains 3.9 grams of fat[*].
In fact, coconut products (such as coconut oil and coconut flour) are excellent sources of MCTs (medium-chain triglycerides), your body’s preferred source of energy when converting fat into ketones.
Make It Yourself
Coconut flour is an incredibly dense flour. To balance out the texture, most recipes will require an abnormally high amount of eggs within the ingredients list. It also turns very flaky and crumbly once it’s baked.
Despite this, it’s the main ingredient in these keto tortillas. Simply top one with your favorite grilled veggies like zucchini, bell peppers, or portobello mushrooms, for a keto-friendly and nutritious wrap.
Pro tip: Coconut flour, because of its density, has a tendency to clump. When combining the dry ingredients, sift the coconut flour through a strainer to ensure an even texture in your recipe.
There’s a reason why cauliflower is the king of keto veggies. Not only is it very low-carb, but it also delivers a great amount of essential nutrients, like vitamin C. Since your body isn’t capable of producing this nutrient on its own, it’s vital to eat vitamin C-rich foods to get all its health benefits and ensure you function at your optimal state[*].
Cauliflower has also shown anti-inflammatory properties thanks to beta-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin, and caffeic acid, all of which help to fight off the damage caused by free radicals.[*]
Make It Yourself
If you haven’t yet realized the versatility of this cruciferous veggie, try this cauliflower pizza crust recipe.
If you’re craving sandwich wraps, use the same recipe but instead:
- Break up the dough into smaller portions, then press into circles on a baking sheet.
- You may need to adjust the cooking time and ensure you take your wraps out of the oven when the edges are golden brown.
Cauliflower contains a lot of water, making it a little tricky to cook with. The best way to use cauliflower in a low-carb bread recipe is to microwave it first. Then, wrap the cooked cauliflower in a cheesecloth and squeeze out excess moisture. Place a piece of parchment paper over a baking sheet to prevent your dough from sticking.
If you don’t own a microwave, boiling the cauliflower will do the trick. Simply drain it, let it cool down, and squeeze it thoroughly using a cheesecloth or clean kitchen cloth.
Lettuce wraps may be the easiest vegan, low-carb bread substitute, and they yield the least amount of calories. Like cauliflower, lettuce is abundant in vitamins C and K. It’s also a rich source of folate, manganese, iron, and potassium. Not only will you be reducing your carb intake, but you’ll also be adding a significant amount of key vitamins and nutrients into your diet at the same time[*].
Make It Yourself
Both iceberg lettuce and romaine lettuce leaves work great as wraps and even as taco shells. Simply open one large leaf, then add in your favorite toppings. Layer together roasted turkey, tomatoes, onions, and keto mayo for a healthy, low-carb, and keto-friendly lunch wrap.
Low-Carb Bread Substitute on a Keto Diet
There’s almost always a keto substitute for your favorite comfort foods. If you’re craving sandwiches, French toast, pita flatbread, or your favorite deli wrap, these five options are a great alternative to regular bread.
Top them with your favorite ingredients like this creamy avocado pesto greens sauce, or dip them in this low-carb cauliflower hummus for a Middle Eastern-flavored snack.
These low-carb bread recipes taste just as good as normal bread, without the stress of abandoning your health goals. They won’t spike your blood sugar, cause insulin resistance, or kick you out of ketosis. Your body will be thankful for the swap.
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