Is Arrowroot Keto-friendly: Finding A Low-Carb Cornstarch Substitute For People On A Ketogenic Diet
A ketogenic diet means a low amount of carbohydrate, a moderate quantity of protein and a large amount of fat. There is a growing number of people who have to go on this diet. Hence, they are on the lookout for healthy substitutions of the high-carb foods. For those who want baked food, they need low-carb flours since regular wheat and flours have a truckload of carbs in them. It then makes sense that people are considering options with relatively fewer carbs as healthy substitutions. Some of these people also have corn allergies, and they need a cornstarch substitute. This article takes a closer look at arrowroots, and the endpoint is determining if it’s a keto-friendly substitute.
What is Arrowroot?
Arrowroot is a tuber vegetable similar to yam and cassava that’s usually refined into a powdery form. The fully processed form is generally called Arrowroot flour and is used to thicken sauces, soups, and other foods. It can also be used to give baked snacks a fluffy texture. However, because of it’s high thickening power, just a small amount of it is used in baking recipes.
Nutritional Make-up of Arrowroot
Arrowroot is nutrient-dense i.e., it contains a lot of nutrients, including potassium, phosphorus, iron, and folate. It also contains carbohydrates and fiber, and all of these nutrients combine to nourish the body and improve one’s health.
Macronutrients Breakdown Of Arrowroot
It’s always important to have a full breakdown of the macronutrients of flour to determine how much of it you consume. Here’s a breakdown of the macronutrients in 100 grams worth of Arrowroot flour as affirmed by Left Coast Performance.
- Calories- 357
- Protein- 0.3
- Carbohydrate- 88.2
- Fiber- 3.4
- Fat- 0.1
So, if you are adding one teaspoon of arrowroot flour to a soup or a baking recipe, below is a breakdown of the nutritional value you get.
- Carbohydrate- 7.1g
- Calories- 29
- Protein- 0g
- Fat- 0g
Arrowroot Vs. Corn starch
If you check out the nutritional breakdown of corn starch, you’ll find out that the amount of calories and carbohydrates in it is pretty similar to what we have in arrowroot. However, one monumental difference between arrowroot and corn starch is the mode of extracting starch. The methods of extracting starch from arrowroot are quite safe and uncomplicated, given that it doesn’t involve the use of toxic chemicals and heat. On the other hand, the extraction model of cornstarch is quite complicated as it involves chemical extraction, making it a less safe option compared to its counterpart.
The arrowroot powder has a more neutral taste than cornstarch does, and as a result, its flavor is largely overwhelming, and you might want to think long and hard before adding it to a recipe.
Arrowroot powder can serve as a better option for people who have corn allergies. It’s also gluten-free and great for a Paleo diet. Interestingly, it can also be vegan. You can use it in place of eggs in some recipes as long as all the other ingredients are used rightly.
Also, the fact that arrowroot is not a grain makes digestion smooth and easy. It has a considerable amount of fiber. Hence, it ensures regular bowel movements and greatly strengthens the immune system.
Is Arrowroot Powder Low-carb?
It is a very important question considering the breakdown of the macronutrients and the fact that it’s being considered as a low-carb substitute. One thing you must have noticed when you were reading the macronutrient breakdown was that the arrowroot contains carbs. The concentration of carbs is similar to what we have in cornstarch. At this point, it then makes sense that you want to just conclude that the arrowroot powder cannot be a low-carb substitute.
Arrowroot powder obviously cannot be compared to other low-carb products like almond. Still, it can be a low-carb substitute, and we are going to explain why. You can make the arrowroot powder a substitute as long as you use a very minimal amount, which will then lower the carb count. The truth is, you do not need a large amount of arrowroot powder in your recipe before you can have what you want. A limited amount will not only give you your desired outcome, but it’ll also ensure you stay within the required carbohydrate limit.
Benefits Of Arrowroot
Arrowroot Is Nutrient Dense
When you say an area is densely populated, you’re saying that we have a large number of people living there. That illustration helps put things in perspective, especially as regards the fact that arrowroot is nutrient-dense. It means that it has a very high concentration of nutrients compared to cornstarch. One hundred grams of arrowroot contains 9.2% of your daily value of potassium, 14% of your DV of phosphorus, 12.5% of your DV of iron, and 85% of your DV of folate. These are essential nutrients that an arrowroot powder can serve you daily.
Arrowroot is Gluten-free
It is some good news, especially for people with celiac disease. It is because gluten causes damage to their small intestines and potentially tampers with the absorption of nutrients, which can lead to other health problems. Arrowroot is gluten-free. It is perfect for people with celiac disease and people who have to be on a paleo diet because of their health.
Arrowroot Has A Low-Glycemic Index
If you are wondering what a glycemic index is, it’s a list that ranks carbs in foods according to their impact on the blood glucose levels. Low-glycemic foods include oatmeal, pasta, sweet potato, and arrowroot. Low glycemic carb helps to maintain some consistency in your blood sugar level
Arrowroot May Be Prebiotic
According to research, the fiber in arrowroot may be prebiotic. Prebiotics refers to some compounds in foods that stimulate the activity of microorganisms that are beneficial to the body system like bacteria and fungi. It will aid the much-needed improvement of your immune system, and you can get all of that from an arrowroot powder.
Arrowroot Boosts Metabolic Rate
Arrowroot contains B-complex vitamins that help to regulate metabolism. The folate in arrowroot also helps to regulate hormonal activity.
Arrowroot Promotes Healthy Sleep
For people who have difficulty sleeping or, in other words, insomnia, arrowroot powder helps you to meet the required magnesium level to correct the disorder. One hundred grams of arrowroot contains about 25mg magnesium. And the good news is magnesium helps to improve the duration and serenity of sleep.
Arrowroot Improves Kidney Health
Arrowroot contains a substantial amount of potassium, which helps to remove toxins from the kidney, ensure smooth circulation, and regulate blood pressure. Elimination of the toxins will also improve the performance of the urinary system.
Drawbacks Of Arrowroot
Arrowroot Is Carb Dense
One of the benefits of arrowroot is the high density of nutrients; however, it also has a high density of one particular nutrient, carbohydrate. So, if you plan on adding it to your recipe, you might want to regulate it with almond flour.
Too Much May Take You Out Of Ketosis
Being on a ketogenic diet, as defined earlier, refers to consuming foods with a low amount of carbohydrate. That specifically means less than 50 grams of carbohydrate daily. Arrowroot contains a considerable amount of carbohydrate, and high intake may take you out of ketosis.
Arrowroot Keto-Friendly Recipes
The carb content of arrowroot does not necessarily mean it cannot be keto-friendly as long as you add a relatively small amount. Lots of people have problems maintaining their ketosis because they just don’t know how to cook without sugar. Well, the solution to this conundrum is learning how to bake and cook with the right amount of arrowroot. Below are three recipes you can make. They contain arrowroot and other keto-friendly flours and will put to rest the recurring question “is arrowroot flour keto-friendly?”.
Keto Brownie Recipe
A ketogenic diet is not a sentence to a life devoid of your favorite desserts. There are recipes for delicious keto brownies, and we are going to fill you in. Firstly, you need some seven ingredients to make the brownies. That includes baking chocolate, one artificial sweetener, eggs, arrowroot powder, coconut oil, chocolate chips, and cocoa powder. There are several options for your artificial sweeteners. Since they need to be keto-friendly, you should limit your options to products like Stevia or monk fruit sweeteners. To make it even more delicious, you can use chocolate chips. All of that will give you delicious brownies that will keep you within your carb limit.
Keto Bread Recipe
Regular wheat bread is not keto-friendly. However, you can have a keto-friendly bread, and you just need some ingredients. They include arrowroot, almond flour, and coconut flour. After you’ve gotten those ready, you may add one tablespoon of honey, which adds about two grams of carbs per slice. This recipe is your go-to whenever you need a low-carb bread. It’s important to note that you should not get too comfortable and use a jam for your bread. That will likely kick you off your ketosis, and we do not want that. You should consider keto-friendly options like avocado or melted coconut oil. Below are some brief directions that should be helpful.
Low-carb and Gluten-free Keto Blueberry Muffins
It’s common knowledge that regular muffins contain a lot of sugar such that even people who aren’t on a ketogenic diet limit their consumption. The interesting thing is they are not going to tell you it isn’t keto-friendly in a grocery store. So, you are going to have to look out for yourself and that involves making keto-friendly blueberry muffins by yourself. Blueberries have relatively low carbohydrate content compared to many other fruits, and that’s why we consider it a safe ingredient. You’ll need two-third of a cup of blueberries at the most, which gives you about 14 grams of carbohydrate.
Keto And Vegan Chocolate Pudding
Making a regular chocolate pudding involves a lot of sugar, which you cannot afford if you are on a ketogenic diet. We very much believe that you can make a low-carb, keto-friendly chocolate pudding that is nothing short of delicious. It’s quite easy, and we’ll give you the necessary ingredients that’ll ensure you can always have your scrumptious chocolate pudding without violating your ketosis. The ingredients include Heavy cream, cocoa powder, sea salt, vanilla, and arrowroot powder. Just pour about ¼ cup of heavy cream into a bowl and add some arrowroot powder. Cook the chocolate pudding ingredient and add some vanilla after. Put it in a fridge for a few hours and stir afterward. There you have it, a low-carb chocolate pudding as corroborated by Keto Concern.
The Verdict: Arrowroot Is Keto-friendly in moderation
There are a lot of low-carb substitutes that can replace corn starch and help people maintain a ketogenic diet. In a bid to find one, it’s very important not to use ingredients that will throw you off your ketosis. Arrowroot is not exactly a low-carb flour considering its carbohydrate content. However, it can be keto-friendly when used moderately. One of the best things about arrowroot powders is that you only need a small quantity of it to achieve your desired results. So if you are using it to thicken your sauce or soup, just add a small amount, and not only will you get results. You’ll stay happily and safely within your ketogenic diet. Also do not forget that arrowroot is gluten-free and it contains prebiotic fiber which will help strengthen your immune system. So to answer the puzzling question, “Is Arrowroot powder Keto-friendly,” we say arrowroot powder is keto-friendly. It can be used in place of cornstarch as long as it is used moderately.