If you’re a low carb eater, or someone just trying to keep an eye on the kinds of starches you eat, or diabetic, then this is for you – Read On!
What is resistant starch?
Well, resistant starch is a lot like fiber, in that the molecules which make up resistant starch resist digestion. So, not all starches get digested. Instead, these rebels make their way into your colon where they feed your friendly gut bacteria. This is critical for health because your gut flora outnumbers your body cells 10 – 1!
By consuming resistant starch you get some powerful health benefits such as improved insulin sensitivity, lower blood sugar levels, reduced appetite, and various benefits for digestion. Simply put your body does not digest all the starch, so it’s not all being absorbed, which leads to some great benefits.
There are a few types of resistant starch:
- Grains, seeds, legumes, raw starchy foods including
- raw potatoes and unripe greenish bananas
- And resistant starch is formed when starchy foods such as potatoes, rice, oatmeal, and pasta are cooked and cooled. The cooling transforms digestible starch into resistant starch
When I stumbled upon resistant starch, it was great news!
I love pasta and all things starchy but I’m a low-carb eater. When I discovered resistant starch, I decided to do a little experiment. I started by eating potato salad every day, then I switched over to pasta salad every day for a week.
Now, I didn’t eat the whole pound of pasta in one sitting… but I did eat it every day for a week (yea, a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do!) someone had to do it 🙂
Actually, I lost the most weight that particular week than any other and I was not working out at the time. I kept a very good track of my eating and was happy with the results. I eat low carb, if you’d like to see what I actually eat check out my Low Carb Guide, it’s 7 pages full of low carb info…
…and I have my whole plan of low carb eating with recipes, tips, and so much more in my Low Carb Ebook it’s 30 pages, and full of info on my journey to lose 35 pounds.
Which I was successful at and have kept the weight off for four years now. Eating low carb really works for me and with the addition of some resistant starch, I don’t feel like I deprive myself of items I was previously avoiding.
Eating resistant carbs didn’t seem to put me in the place of craving carbs and other items I try to avoid while losing weight. Often when I’d eat the sugar, carb-loaded foods, and such, it would put me in a constant state of craving more, and I’d yo-yo back and forth struggling to eat something but still wanting more “carbs”. I now feel satisfied with what I was eating, so the yo-yo of blood sugar increase didn’t seem to have me in a lull, later on, craving more carbs you could say. Great news all around!
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Okay so let’s get down to the brass tacks here. You may be thinking, “But I don’t want my pasta cooled all the time.” I hear you! You can reheat it if that’s more palatable for you, as reheating is different than cooking.
Leftover for the WIN!
But plan things out, cook some pasta (rice or beans) ahead of time and have them at the ready… I typically cook a pound or two of pasta and place it in the fridge to have to make quick meals. Since I’m reheating it, it falls under the resistant starch category which is good news for time-saving recipes. And if you don’t overcook the pasta to being with, no one will know you didn’t just make it and heat it, or simply make it into a pasta salad and serve cold if you prefer.
Reheating doesn’t decrease the resistant starches in your pasta, beans, or whatever you’ve made. In truth, I don’t mind my foods cold – which is why I prefer cold coffee, like my Dalgona Coffee (You’ll thank me!) And there are some things that are just good cold! Try one of these amazing recipes:
- Macaroni Salad – One of my comforts, it’s simple to make and packed full of flavor. Plus it’s a great base recipe for you to use and transform into your own! Add shrimp or even chicken to get your protein in. Or play around with veggies to switch up the texture, flavor, and color!
- Potato Salad – This is a dish everyone is familiar with, and it’s another versatile dish that you can play with and make your own. However, this recipe hits all the flavor buttons and is fantastic just as it is. It’s great as a side, or as a lunch.
- Overnight Oats – If you’re not a fan of oatmeal, you will be after this recipe. There’s no cooking involved, it’s all assembly. All you need is patience to wait until morning! It’s super delicious and packed with nutrition. It’s a breakfast (or snack) you won’t feel guilty about!
- Instant Pot Pinto Beans – Beans are such an amazing food, and I think they are underappreciated. Pinto beans are simple, but such a staple. I’m always making a batch to serve as refried beans, just stir in a cup of cheddar cheese and a dash of taco seasoning and you’re all set. They can be served up with a bit of pork and pepperoncini or left simple with just a bit of salt and black pepper.
……and the list goes on but these are my top 4 favorites. I have so much more however to share with you. Since we left off on the subject of beans, let’s explore this simple food with a few more recipes I’m sure you’ll love!
- Instant Pot Baked Beans – Perfect for your next grill out.
- Beans and Brussel Sprouts – A great way to dress up your Brussels!
- Sausage Rice and Beans – This dish reminds me of southern cooking, it’s a comfort dish and reheats wonderfully.
- Black Bean Soup – Another comfort dish in soup form! Serve with your favorite accompaniments like avocado and cilantro.
And then I have a blog dedicated to this wonderful legume – You can get all your Bean recipes in one place by clicking HERE.
Next, let’s take a gander at Potatoes! Yes you know you can make potato salad – but potato salad goes beyond just mayo! I have a few favorites that I switch out to keep my taste buds singing:
- German Potato Salad – A little salty, a little sweet – a whole lot of good! Bacon, celery, and onion combine for a savory and sweet treat. You can chill it and reheat it.
- Avocado Potato Salad – Avocado creates a delightfully dreamy and creamy texture in this version of potato salad.
- No Mayo Potato Salad – No mayo? No problem! This is a healthier take on potato salad, and it’s so delicious, you won’t miss the mayo, perfect for those who aren’t big mayo fans. If you do like mayo maybe try making it homemade.
- Lemon Dill Potato Salad – Tangy and delicious, perfect for a summer’s day!
- Rosemary and Garlic Potato Salad – Earthy and savory, this is one of my favorites to serve with roasted meats!
But if you love potatoes and just want a baked one – I have you covered there as well!
My Instant Pot Baked Potato couldn’t be easier. And the best part is you can bake several of them at a time and reheat them throughout the week! And sweet potato lovers, I haven’t left you out either! I love a good sweet potato dish, it’s like dessert and dinner all in one. Here are a couple of my tried and true recipes I make a lot:
- Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes – Sweet and so good – one of my favorite ways to serve leftover sweet potatoes.
- Thai Peanut Sweet Potato Noodle Salad – A creative low-carb way to serve this root veggie with all the exotic flavors of Thailand.
And then there’s rice. I love rice dishes – and I find rice dishes reheat amazingly. In fact, after they’ve sat overnight in the fridge, their flavors develop a little more. The end result is a more flavor packed dish for you! Here are my go to’s:
- Mexican Rice Recipe – Warm and subtly spicy, but packed with flavor.
- Chicken and Sausage Fried Rice – Perfect as a dish on its own, or serve it with your favorite main dish.
- Rice Pudding – oh so good! It’s simple to make and you’ll quickly add this one to your rotation of desserts. so yes a dessert so there is added sugar, but there is no flour and since you chill it, I included it 🙂 and here is my Instant Pot Rice Pudding
- Leftover Ham and Fried Rice – Leftovers made easy and reimagined!
- Shrimp Fried Rice – Classic Chinese food for when you want take-out but want to try your hand at some of your favorite dishes!
And just like the beans, I have a post dedicated just to rice dishes.
You can find out everything you need to know – from how to cook it, to how to fry it up – click here for Recipes with Rice!
I saved the best for last – Pasta! It’s my personal favorite, and I think a lot of you reading this would agree. This Italian food made its way to America and into the hearts and stomachs of its people and now we are all hooked! And who knew cooking pasta and letting it cool would allow us all the freedom to partake in it more frequently with amazing health benefits?! Thank you, resistant starch! Here are some of my top pasta dishes:
having cooked cooled pasta at the ready makes it simple and easy to whip up meals fast!
- Creamy Lemon Pasta Salad – This is a great summer’s day dish. Fresh and slightly tangy.
- Caprese Pasta Salad – It’s a Caprese salad with pasta! Simple, but when something is as delicious as this is, it doesn’t have to be complicated!
- Pesto Zucchini Pasta – Have some zucchini that needs to get used? This is a great way to use it and enjoy it
- Lemon Dill Tuna Pasta Salad – Protein-packed with the fresh flavors of lemon and dill – it’s super good!
- Pasta Fagioli in 30 Minutes – Once again, comfort wins the day! Delicious and quick. You can make it ahead of time and just reheat it, that goes for any soup you’d like to add pasta too, just cook the pasta and chill it, then add it to the soup as you reheat it.
- Strawberry Lime and Jalapeno Pasta Salad – If you’re looking for something unique that’s a real crowd-pleaser, this is it. It ticks all the sweet and spicy boxes.
- Homemade Pasta – And of course, it’s always fun to try your hand at making your own pasta! It’s not as difficult as you might think! Wow everyone with this recipe.
Understanding resistant starch may have you rethinking how you make meals, specifically cooking ahead of time, like preparing the oatmeal, pasta, or rice ahead of time or meal prepping meals to reheat. In the long run, it’ll make eating easier and faster since you don’t have to make food each day.
There is no better time to plan ahead, so prep out the starch for the week at the beginning of the week and cut the time it’ll take you to make meals almost in half and with a lot less effort.
And I have so much more in my blog, including one that’s just about different sauces you can make for your pasta. Get playful with my Pasta Sauce Recipe Combinations and see what you can create – after all, good cooking comes from getting creative in the kitchen!
I hope you’ve enjoyed this informative blog on resistant starch, I’m always researching new ways to cook healthier – so keep your eyes peeled! And if you aren’t already, subscribe to my emails. You’ll then have plenty of great recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and drinks, and let’s not forget dessert for those times you need a sweet treat!
As always this post is informational and not to be taken as expert or medical advise.
the more ive dug into this resistant starch thing since i became diabetic and found out about resistant starch creation,, i have found even more ways to use it….even bread if baked and chilled can create the starch along with french fries..you know frozen fries are usually precooked partially anyway so thats a plus! the deeper i dig the more carb foods can be cooked chilled and cold or reheated and dont raise blood sugars ….win/win
so awesome, for anyone wanting to eat low carb, help with diabetes, great news all around 🙂
I’m so excited to learn about this, as I am on a keto journey. My question to you is, how would you track resistant starches (cooled potatoes/rice) in a carb tracker? Or do you not track it at all?
I don’t track them honestly. I try to keep things simple, when I’m looking to lose weight, I track calories but that all 🙂 I can easily obsessed and it can be time consuming/overwhelming 🙂 sorry I couldn’t be more help!