The keto diet is becoming increasingly popular among people looking to lose weight and improve their overall health.
But one of the most commonly asked questions by people who are considering following this diet is: can you eat rice in keto?
The answer is that, unfortunately, the simple carbs found in regular white and brown rice don’t fit within the macros of a ketogenic diet, so it’s off-limits for those wanting to stick to this way of eating.
However, if you miss the taste and texture of your favorite white or brown rice dishes, there are several healthier alternatives to choose from that won’t take away from your overall keto goals.
Options such as cauliflower rice, shirataki noodles, lentils, and wild rice create an excellent substation and can be prepared just as easily – so there’s no need to fret.
Is Any Rice Allowed on Keto?
If you’re following a Keto diet, the answer to whether any rice is allowed depends on the type of rice.
White rice, for example, is high in carbohydrates and should be avoided as it will not fit into the very low-carb parameters of this diet.
However, some varieties, such as riced cauliflower or black rice, are now becoming popular alternatives, especially among those targeting weight loss on a Keto diet.
Not only do these alternative grains offer fewer carbs, but they also provide interesting tastes and textures that add variety to dishes.
For instance, alternative rice can give meals an almost nutty flavor or be used to create flavorful stirfries packed with nutrients.
Black and wild rice are perfect for making risotto or great side dishes to accompany proteins like salmon.
Using alternatives to white rice may help you control your carb intake so that you can enjoy delicious meals while reaching your Keto goals.
The 5 Best Keto Substitutes for Rice
If you’re following a keto diet, you might be missing your favorite carb-heavy foods, such as rice.
Fortunately, there are plenty of delicious and nutritious alternatives that can easily fit into a low-carb meal plan.
Here are five of the best substitutes for rice on a keto diet.
1 – Cauliflower Rice
Cauliflower rice is an incredibly versatile side dish or main course for anyone who is following a low-carb, keto diet.
It is much healthier than regular rice, with fewer carbohydrates and calories, but it still delivers a hefty dose of vitamins and minerals.
Texturally, it can mimic the chewiness of cooked rice grains with the same satisfying “mouthfeel” – just add some butter and salt to bring out the flavor.
When substituting it in dishes like stir-fries and casseroles, use half cauliflower to take the place of all of your carbohydrate rice.
The result will be a delicious meal that’s light on carbs but still packs enough flavor to satisfy even picky eaters.
2 – Shirataki Rice
Shirataki rice is a low-carbohydrate substitute for traditional white rice, perfect for those looking to cut down on sugar.
It is made from the root of a specific type of yam and does not contain any wheat or gluten.
It is thinner than most types of rice, with a slightly chewy texture that some compare to al dente pasta.
Its taste profile is mild and neutral, ideal for soaking up flavors from other ingredients such as protein, vegetables, or sauces.
If you’re looking to find an easy substitute for high-carb white rice while following a ketogenic diet, give shirataki Rice a try.
Its brief boiling process ensures this preparation can be added to a meal in minutes.
Plus, since it has fewer carbs and calories than typical jasmine or basmati rice, it’s a great addition to any low-carb dish.
3 – Mushroom Rice
Mushroom rice is a delicious and healthy substitute for traditional rice.
Made with minced mushrooms blended and mixed with seasonings, it provides a great alternative to white or brown rice and other grain-based forms of carbohydrates.
The preparation is quick and simple; simply blend the mushroom pieces until they resemble coarse grains, then sauté in oil or butter of choice with salt and spices to taste.
When cooked, the texture is pleasantly crunchy yet still soft enough to be eaten as a side dish or main.
A great way to enjoy mushroom rice if you are living a keto lifestyle is to use it as a replacement for regular rice when making Asian stir-fries or risotto.
4 – Lentils
Lentils are a type of legume commonly used in Indian and Middle Eastern dishes.
Their rich yet earthy flavor has been an inspiration for many delicious cuisines around the world.
Lentils are also easy to digest and can be a source of vegetarian protein.
In terms of texture, cooked lentils are a bit soft and squishy yet still hold their shape well when used in stews or curries.
It is even possible to substitute them for rice as part of a ketogenic diet; simply simmer the lentils for about 15 minutes until they are soft, drain off any excess liquid, then cook in ghee or butter until golden brown.
Serve with your favorite seasonings or spices, and enjoy.
5 – Wild Rice
Wild rice is a grain-like seed harvested from wild aquatic grasses.
It’s been consumed by indigenous people of North America for generations and has recently become more popular due to its potential health benefits.
Wild rice retains more of the outer bran layer compared to its white and brown rice counterparts, making it a great source of fiber and antioxidants.
The flavor of wild rice is earthy, with a slightly nutty taste and chewy texture.
For those on the ketogenic diet looking for an alternative to white or brown rice, wild rice makes an ideal substitute as it’s low in net carbohydrates and can be used in many classic rice dishes.
In conclusion, there are many options for substituting traditional rice for a ketogenic diet.
From cauliflower “rice” to shirataki rice and lentils to mushroom and wild rice, you can easily find an alternative that fits your food preferences while still following the guidelines of a low-carbohydrate lifestyle.
With these delicious alternatives in hand, you can enjoy the benefits of a ketogenic diet without having to give up your favorite rice dishes.