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The Healthiest Noodles: The Best Pasta Brands for Your Diet Goals

- Written by on July 31st 2015

Most people would probably say that pasta and dieting do not go hand in hand. Regardless of whether you're trying to lose weight, gain muscle, or simply eat more nutritious meals, many would agree that you're better off eating other foods. This is probably true—pasta still isn't a substitute for vegetables—but there are actually several pasta brands offering noodles with uncommon ingredients that might just change the way we think about pasta and healthy eating.

That said, we've done a bit of investigating and have come across some of the healthiest noodles you can find in stores and online.

High Protein Noodles

One of the problems with noodles is that they typically contain much more carbohydrate than protein and fat and, in some cases, have very little fiber too. Fat, protein, and fiber work together to make you feel full and slow the digestion process (thus slowing the release of sugar into the bloodstream). This explains why you might experience a blood sugar rush and not stay satisfied very long after eating a pasta-heavy meal, especially if you're eating the average kind of pasta. For example, take a look at this Barilla spaghetti:

Barilla Spaghetti - 200 calories per serving

  • 42 grams of carbohydrates
  • 7 grams of protein
  • 2 grams of fiber
  • 1 gram of fat

Now, compare that to Explore Asian's line of noodles made from black beans, adzuki beans, or edamame, instead of flour:

Explore Asian Organic Adzuki Bean Spaghetti - 207 calories per serving

  • 26 grams of carbohydrates
  • 20 grams of protein
  • 15 grams of fiber
  • 2 grams of fat

As you can see, these noodles are much healthier than the Barilla noodles because they contain considerably more protein and fiber. Plus, they are made from just organic adzuki beans, organic soybeans, and water, so they are gluten free and vegan too. Unfortunately, Explore Asian noodles aren't as widely available as Barilla noodles, but they can be ordered on Amazon.

High Fiber Noodles

Though bean noodles may very well be the healthiest noodles, they probably don't taste like traditional noodles and you, or your family, might not be willing to make such a big switch.

Perhaps you think you'll swap regular pasta for whole wheat pasta instead. Whole wheat pasta usually does have a bit more protein and fiber than white pasta, but it should be noted that the differences between whole wheat and white are not that significant. Portion control absolutely matters!

Nonetheless, we did run across one brand of whole wheat noodles that stood out from the rest. Food for Life, the maker of Ezekiel sprouted grain bread and sprouted grain cereal, also makes sprouted grain spaghetti, elbow pasta, fettuccine, and penne. Each 210 calorie serving of sprouted grain spaghetti contains 9 grams of protein and 7 grams of fiber, and these noodles are more likely to pass the "tastes like normal noodles" test.

The ingredients aren't too shabby either:

Organic Sprouted Whole Grain Wheat, Organic Sprouted Whole Grain Barley, Organic Sprouted Whole Grain Millet, Organic Sprouted Whole Lentils, Organic Sprouted Whole Soybeans, Organic Sprouted Whole Grain Spelt.

Food For Life Ezekiel 4:9 Sprouted Grain Pasta

  • made with organic sprouted grains
  • 28% of your daily recommended fiber intake per serving
  • not sold everywhere, try using their store locator

Low Carb and Low Calorie Noodles

Many dieters count calories and carbs, two things pasta dishes are known to be high in. One brand of noodles has taken the diet world by storm, so we'd be crazy to write a post about the healthiest noodles without mentioning them. Shirataki noodles are made from the indigestible root of a Japanese plant, and they are a popular diet food (commonly sold by the brand Miracle Noodle) because they have 0 calories and less than 1 gram of carbs per serving. They unfortunately don't provide any significant amount of protein or fiber either, but they make a great base for a meal rich in veggies and protein.

Miracle Noodle Pasta

  • 0 calories per serving
  • gluten free, soy free, GMO free, and vegan
  • some people find the noodles have a strong smell and unusual texture, you'll have to try them yourself to decide if they are for you!

Veggie Noodles

If you're not convinced by these store bought options or you want the absolutely healthiest noodles you can eat, we would recommend you buy a spiralizer and make your own veggie noodles. Zucchini noodles or "zoodles" are probably the most popular, but you can make noodles with carrots, sweet potatoes, beets, and more. Even without a spiralizer, you can enjoy veggie noodles if you prepare a spaghetti squash, so named because of its spaghetti-like insides! Check out these spaghetti squash "pasta" dishes for inspiration.


Crystal Schlegelmilch

Written by on July 31st 2015

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