Who doesn’t love carbs? We mean LOVE carbs? From cakes to pizza to pastas to sandwiches… we pretty much want it all. Sadly, they aren’t great in abundance if we want to have a beach bod this summer. Why? Our bodies naturally turn to carbs for a source of fuel before heading over to our fat to collect. So while we need some, science says it makes sense to cut back if we’re trying to improve muscle tone and strength.
Luckily, there are plenty of genius carb substitutions out there that may just trick our bodies into thinking we’re having the real thing, all the while providing us with other nutrients. We’ve rounded up 17 of our fave recipes, here:
17 genius carb substitutions that still taste totally amazing
Avocado Bacon and EggsWho needs toast when you can bake eggs and bacon inside creamy, good-for-you avocado instead?
GET THE RECIPE'Lil Luna
Cauliflower Grilled CheeseThis carb-free grilled cheese sandwich might take a little longer to make than the traditional kind, but it's also the best thing since sliced bread.
GET THE RECIPEThe Iron You
Eggplant PizzaMost of us know that eggplant can be an excellent pasta substitution in lasagnas, but it also doubles as the perfect pizza crust. If you're avoiding carbs, that is.
GET THE RECIPEEat Good 4 Life
Pepper TacosTake your next Taco Tuesday to the next level by stuffing peppers instead of tortilla shells. Not only are they less mess, but red peppers are high in vitamin C. Plus you can stuff more meat in 'em.
GET THE RECIPEThe Girl Who Ate Everything
Spaghetti Squash FrittersWanna be bad but really, really good? Get your fritter on by subbing out carb-heavy potatoes for spaghetti squash, which is rich in omega 3 and 6.
GET THE RECIPEJulia's Album
Cauliflower "Mac" and CheeseSure, you don't actually get any pasta in this dish, but with cheese and creamy cauliflower you might not miss it. Added bonus? It can all be done in the slow cooker.
GET THE RECIPESpicy Southern Kitchen
Cloud BreadSometimes you just really need some bread. Luckily, you can have a carb-free version anytime with a little protein-rich egg and cream cheese. Try this standard version, or throw in some herbs and seasoning for a more savoury batch.
GET THE RECIPECinnamon and Toast
Meat BagelsMeat lovers can rejoice with this genius bagel that looks like the standard variety, but is actually comprised of meat. Add some veggies in between the "bun" and you've got a complete meal.
GET THE RECIPEDitch the Wheat
Pepperoni Cauliflower Pizza CasseroleCauliflower pizza crust is fine, but boy does it take a lot of work. Cut that down with this delicious, cheesy pizza casserole, which looks way too sinful to be a veggie.
GET THE RECIPEI Breathe I'm Hungry
Quinoa MeatballsFor those times you're craving all the meatballs, but don't want to carb up on all those breadcrumbs, opt for protein-packed quinoa instead. Wrap the final product in lettuce wraps for a bonus carb-free win.
GET THE RECIPECookin' Canuck
Zucchini EnchiladasTex-Mex just got a serious healthy makeover thanks to this recipe, which swaps out tortillas for zucchini "boats." We guarantee you're gonna want seconds.
GET THE RECIPESkinny Taste
Oatmeal PancakesIf you can't skip carbs all together, oatmeal is a great alternative. With only 12 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams (and lots of filling fibre), it's a genius addition to these wheat-free, fluffy pancakes.
GET THE RECIPEAmbitious Kitchen
Squash FriesWe all love French fries, but we don't love the fat, calories and CARBS they come with. Feeling a craving coming on? Try these saliva-inducing squash fries instead.
GET THE RECIPEMy Fussy Eater
Sweet Potato Crust QuicheEggs? Good. Delicious, delicious crust? Not so much. That's what makes this sweet potato crust so awesome. Now we can enjoy all the quiche goodness, but with zero guilt.
GET THE RECIPEFarmgirl Gourmet
Tomato ToastsWe eat tomatoes all the time; in pastas, salads and even ketchup. So why not use the vitamin-packed fruit as a sub for toast the next time you make bruschetta? These bakes, with asiago and parmesan cheese, are sure to satisfy any craving.
GET THE RECIPECooking Classy
Portobello BurgersYou may have heard of a portobello mushroom replacing the meat in a burger, but it can also replace the bun. Then, stuff it with whatever burger goodness you'd like. Or even more veggies, like in this rendition.
GET THE RECIPEThe Mushroom Channel
Zucchini LasagnaSometimes we just really want lasagna. But aside from those carb-heavy noodles, it can also be a pain to make. Cut down the time and the carbs by subbing zucchini (or eggplant!) for the noodles instead.
GET THE RECIPESkinny Taste