But it’s a superfood!
yes, I am aware.
But you are vegan! vegans are supposed to eat quinoa even when they are asleep!
Well, maybe some do- I don’t.
What a hypocrite! I remember you wrote a post about making quinoa and couldn’t stop praising it!
That’s true. and here is the link to the said post:
I am not denying the multiple pros of quinoa.
It is a great source of protein, a whole grain, and as I wrote above- it is a superfood.
I simply don’t find it to be tasty on its own, only when thrown into a vegetable salad, or accompanied by beans or lentils, to hide its taste.
But 8 grams of protein in 1 cooked cup!
Absolutely true- but those grams of protein happen to go along with 222 calories, 4 grams of fat, and only 5.2 grams of fiber, and a quite impressive price tag.
So if you are a fan of quinoa- yey for you- it is great food, enjoy! but- for those of you who think “meh” when they consider quinoa while preparing their food, I did the research for a good alternative.
*The only major issue I think is super important to notice here is that quinoa is gluten-free, ( although I’ve read it is considered high risk because it is frequently grown with wheat grains) and the #1 alternative I’ve found- isn’t.
Go on, I’m listening.
Thank you ever so much.
First- the criteria the alternative had to meet were:
I mean this is what had started the whole thing to begin eith so might as well get it right this time.
#2:a whole grain.
Naturally, you wouldn’t substitute a superfood for white rice , with all due respect for the rice.
#3: easy preparation.
No one has the time or energy to start a 3 layer process to arrange a side dish. unless of course, you happen to be a TV chef, in which case- seriously? what are you doing reading my blog? go post something complicated on Instagram and write “at the last minute decided to whip this cute dessert too! love it! ” so we can all feel incompetent and mediocre.
yes, I am still protein crazed.
#6: has other nutritional values too.
If we’re shopping for an alternative- why not aim high? we can always compromise later.
Why not? frugality will get you closer to early retirement, and that is the end goal.
The options were: brown rice and bulgur.
Buckwheat didn’t make it to the finals because I have a personal problem with its taste (sorry, horrible!) and oat grains and spelt are super expensive here, plus I eat oatmeal porridge every morning so kind of enough of that. those grains are great too- don’t get me wrong- just a bit expensive where I live. if you like them- go for them.
- oh just reminding for the 10,000 time that I am not a registered dietitian or health specialist -simply an early retired lawyer, health enthusiast. there, said it , again.
So who was the winner? right- the winner was the bulgur!
Although brown rice is great- tasty, easy to make (I make it like pasta- cook in boiling water for 40 minutes ), nutritional (put a link here )- in 1 cup of cooked brown rice there are 5 grams of protein, 44 grams of carbs, 1.8 grams of fat, 216 calories and 3.5 grams of fiber, plus its relatively frugal: and yet- bulgur topped it on all categories.
here s a link to he competitors nutritional values, got to be fair.
brown rice nutritional value
Back to our winner- the Bulgur!
#1: tasty: oh yes, this is one yummy grain. has a distinct nutty taste in my opinion.
goes with everything- savory, sweet (fruit and nuts for example), as the main dish, as a side dish, in soups, whatever.
#2: whole grain: check.
#3: easy preparation? you are kidding me. you mean no preparation: bulgur doesn’t even need to be properly cooked. no need to take out a pan. no need to light the stove. perfect for students with no proper stove and lunch making in the office.
Take a big glass container (pyrex or something of the genre-not sponsored so there), put the bulgur, pour boiling water on it to top it and some more, salt and a little bit of olive oil, just for good measure, not necessary though), close the lid and wait 10 minutes. check if its edible, if too crunchy and it absorbed all the water- add more boiling water- maybe a cup.
Don’t get upset if the bulgur seems ready and it hadn’t soaked up all the water. just drain it in a colander, the bulgur is easy going. it won’t mind.
oh wait- it freezes really well, so go ahead and make in bulk for the upcoming weeks.
#4: healthy– sure- whole grain, considered by some to be a superfood too.
(perhaps the term is a bit overused).
#5: protein-packed: well 1 cup cooked bulgur holds 5.6 grams of protein. but only 150 calories, so if you look at it from the caloric point of view, for 220 calories of bulgur, and 220 calories of quinoa, you get the same amount of protein. (!).
#6: has other nutritional values: well 1 cup of cooked bulgur holds no less than 8.2 grams of fiber (!) but only 0.4 grams of fat(!)and as I said 150 calories. I remind you that the quinoa holds 4 grams of fat -10 times more(!) and only 5.2 grams of fiber.
#7: frugal: where I live I buy 1 kilo of bulgur for 1.5 $. that is frugal. very very frugal. quinoa costs me 10 $ a kilo. you get the difference.
All of this is just to say- hey- you don’t like a certain healthy food? it’s too expensive for you? look for an alternative! don’t compromise on the nutritional value, or on the easy preparation demand. if it is too difficult to make- it will sit in your cupboard, and that is neither healthy nor frugal.
Happy new year!
Enjoy- the cooliflower.