Pasta Alternatives

Check out these ideas to cut down on carbs.


By Linzy Ziegelbaum


While pasta is a great addition to any meal, there are so many delicious pastas to try. From vegetable noodles to bean noodles, there are many noodle substitutions to use to add variety to your meals. These substitutions are also great for people who have to avoid wheat due to food allergies and intolerances. Keep reading to learn about the nutrition benefits for some of my favorites.

Zucchini Noodles: While these noodles definitely don’t taste like spaghetti, they are a great way to add more vegetables into your diet, and work well as a replacement for spaghetti in recipes. Zucchini noodles are low in calories, and high in vitamin C. To prepare them, try sautéing them in olive oil and topping them with parmesan cheese. Enjoy them as a side dish, or top them with your favorite protein.

Chickpea Pasta: Even if you are not a fan of chickpeas, you may find that you like chickpea pasta. Chickpea pastas are similar in consistency to regular wheat pastas, but because they are made out of chickpeas, they are higher in fiber and protein. Prepare them according to the instructions on their package, and serve them with your favorite sauce.

Black Bean spaghetti: While the color of this spaghetti is deceiving, black bean pasta tastes great and is high in protein and fiber. Use this in place of other spaghettis when making your favorite recipes, or use it as a salad topping instead of beans since beans are the only ingredient for this spaghetti.

Spaghetti Squash: It is low in carbohydrates and a good source of fiber, potassium, and vitamin C. Similarly to zucchini noodles, using spaghetti squash in recipes is a great way to add more vegetables into your diet.

A Simple Spaghetti Squash Recipe to try: Spaghetti Squash Parmesan Boats.


1 Spaghetti Squash

1 Jar of your favorite tomato sauce

Mozzarella cheese


1. Preheat the oven to 400 F

2. Cut Spaghetti squash in half and scrape out the inside seeds

3. Once the squash is cleaned out, cover the top portion of the squash in olive oil and place it face down on a greased baking sheet

4. Bake in the oven for ~1 hour

5. Remove the squash from the oven and once it is cool enough to touch, use a fork to scrape the squash while you watch it turn into “spaghetti”

6. While leaving the “spaghetti” strands inside the shell, add sauce on top and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese

7. Place back in the oven for a few minutes until the cheese has melted and enjoy

Linzy Ziegelbaum, MS, RD, CDN is a registered dietitian and owner of the private practice LNZnutrition LLC. She provides nutrition counseling and education to clients of all ages with many nutrition needs. Linzy enjoys sharing her love and nutrition expertise with others through counseling, her LNZnutrition blog and social media pages, including Facebook and Instagram.

Main Photo Credit & Second Photo Credit: Elena Veselova/; Third Photo Credit: DarZel/