We don’t have to tell you that there is a lot of buzz around gluten free pastas right now. Whether you’re gluten intolerant or just seeking out a more nutrient dense option than your run-of-the-mill white pasta, there are many alternatives on the market. Outlined below are three great options along with benefits, drawbacks and best uses.

Zucchini “Pasta”

Zucchini “pasta” is simply raw zucchini sliced very thin or cut with a specific kitchen tool that makes it similar in size to spaghetti noodles. Though the device makes a perfect noodle every time, cutting the zucchini without it is still easy and will only cost you a little bit more time.

Benefit: Using zucchini as pasta increases the veggie content of any meal.

Drawback: The texture isn’t comparable to pasta.

Best use: Any time you have a heartier sauce (avocado based or tomato) and want a low-carb option.


Photo by Kelly Logan

Brown Rice Pasta

The brand Tinkyáda makes an entire line of different shaped pastas that are made completely out of brown rice. It is full of the whole grains and the nutrients of brown rice without sacrificing the pasta texture.

Benefit: Especially for people with sensitivities to wheat and gluten, brown rice pasta delivers a pasta with an excellent texture and nutrient content.

Drawback: For every 2/3 cup, this option carries about 230 calories.

Best use: They are the most similar to traditional pastas and can be substituted easily.


Photo by Kelly Logan

Mung Bean Noodles

This pasta alternative is made by a company called Explore Asian. They take the mung beans and process them into a pasta form. This pasta has a whopping 20 grams of protein for each 1.75-ounce serving. In addition, these noodles are lower in carbohydrates than typical wheat pastas. This is an excellent alternative for people who crave pasta but want a more filling meal.

Benefit: High in fiber and protein.

Drawback: They have a distinct flavor of their own; however, sauce helps to disguise it.

Best use: Because of their strong flavor, these noodles are served best with a bolder sauce. When paired with a good marinara with meatballs or vodka sauce with chicken, these noodles are delicious.


Check out these articles for more ideas and information about these options: