Have you felt that some of the plant-based recipes have uncommon ingredients? The main reason to have these ingredients is that they are necessary for ensuring the right nutrition. Many of these are substitutes for the missing protein that we usually get from dairy and meat products. Some of these are often used for flavor and some others are added for ensuring health. Shared below are the details of some of the uncommon ingredients used in plant-based recipes. Read along to know more about these uncommon ingredients in plant-based food items and their nutrient profiles.
These are obtained from the juices of the coconut tree and can be a great replacement for soy sauce. It has a rich antioxidant profile and has all the requisite amino acids needed by our body. Coconut aminos also contains many vitamins, minerals and is also low on the glycemic index. It is rich in vitamins like vitamin C and B vitamins and can be a very good option for those who are allergic to soy and soy-based products.
Jackfruit is the largest fruit in the world and is a great replacement for meat as it is shreddable. It is most often available in canned form and the best option is to buy the type that is young and green. It can be easily bought from Asian grocery stores. Ripe jackfruit can be very sweet and it might not be a good idea to buy them if you are looking to reduce sugar consumption. Like pineapple, jackfruit has a core, and the seeds of the fruit need to be removed before cooking.
Chia seeds are reliable sources of proteins, fiber, and minerals. These seeds can be eaten as a whole to get nutrition from them, unlike flax seeds that need to be ground to ensure the availability of nutrition from them. To use chia seeds as an egg substitute, add one tablespoon of the seeds to 3 tablespoons of water and allow it to sit for 5 to 10 minutes. The resulting solution can be used as a substitute for egg white.
These are the seeds of the common flax plants and are a rich source of fatty acids. Flax seeds are to be eaten ground to ensure nutrition from them. These seeds can also be used as an egg substitute when mixed with water and are used in many plant-based recipes as a replacement for eggs.
These seeds are packed with omega 3 fatty acids. Hemp seeds have a great balance of fatty acids from omega 3 to 6. They are a great source of B vitamins, vitamin A, vitamin D, calcium, iron, vitamin E, potassium, magnesium, zinc, and many other minerals that are required for the proper functioning of our body.
This is a flaky substance obtained as a by-product from the process used to manufacture beer. Brewers yeast is much similar to nutritional yeast and is mainly added as a supplement to a plant-based meal. The type of yeast usually contains B vitamins that might not be present in a vegan or vegetarian diet. Besides, it also contains micronutrients like selenium, magnesium, and chromium that are required by our body.
Miso is in the form of a puree and it is made by fermenting barley, soybeans, or rice malt. Miso is traditionally used in Japanese cooking and is also added to vegan or vegetarian meals to improve flavor. It can be usually found in the refrigerator section of Japanese stores or health food stores.
It is a flaky substance that tastes like cheese and is grown on molasses. Just like brewers yeast, nutritional yeast is also added to plant-based recipes as a supplement. Nutritional yeast contains magnesium and B vitamins. Unlike brewers yeast, it is not a good source of chromium or selenium. Nutritional yeast is also called nooch.
Soy curls can be used as a meat substitute and are a gluten-free option that is made from whole soybean. These are dried and completely organic, together with being free from any form of preservatives. When rehydrated, they resemble chicken and can be easily found in whole food markets.
Tempeh is made from slightly fermented and cooked soybeans and is made into a patty and is very much similar to a veggie burger. Many of the commercially available brands have other added grains like barley and extra spices and flavors.
It is also a great meat alternative that is rich in protein. It holds all the necessitous amino acids except for lysine. You can season it with liquid aminos or mix it with something like bean sprouts to make it a complete source of protein. Seitan is also low in calories and high in vitamin C, B vitamins, and iron.