All About Sprouted Grains: Cereals & Breads

Recently, I have become a frequent cereal eater again thanks to a company called; One Degree Organics. I stumbled upon their products in Whole Foods Market and immediately loved their mission and most importantly their ingredients.

One Degree Organics is a great company that prides itself on its’ organic and sustainable line of products. I have recently fallen in love with their cereals. Each cereal is composed of a handful of ingredients that you can read and completely understand what they are. The cereals are made with sprouted ancient whole grains that are both vegan and organic. There are GMO free and contain no other additives or added sugars. The cereals are high in fiber and very low in fat and sugar contrary to many cereals on the market these days. They are a great source of grains and pair amazing with some almond milk and a sliced banana or handful of berries. My favorite flavor is the Honey O’s (yes, just like Honey Nut Cheerios, but much healthier). One Degree Organics also makes lots of other products including breads, flours, and seeds.

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What is Sprouted Grain?
Sprouted grain differs from whole grain in three fundamental aspects:
1) sprouting activates food enzymes
2) sprouting increases vitamin content
3) sprouting neutralizes antinutrients like phytic acid which bind up minerals preventing your ability to fully absorb them

What are the Benefits?
Increased Digestibility – Sprouting breaks down starches in grains into simple sugars so your body can digest them easily.
Increased Absorption of Minerals – Sprouting breaks down enzyme inhibitors, so your body can more easily adsorb calcium, magnesium, iron, copper and zinc.
Increased Antioxidants – Sprouting releases more antioxidants that are naturally stored in the grains and seeds.
Increased Vitamin C – Sprouting produces vitamin C
Increased Vitamin B – Sprouting increases the vitamin B2, B5 & B6

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Another great company to consider when looking to buy sprouted grain products is Food for Life. They have extensive lines of breads, tortillas, waffles, buns, and cereals. I love their line of sprouted grain breads, which are a perfect way to have toast or a sandwich without all the added chemicals and processed flours found in other bread brands! It is important to feed your body carbohydrates often even though many “diets” like to rule them out. Carbohydrates are our main source of energy and provide the ideal fuel for our body to function, as well as many essential vitamins and minerals. Complex carbohydrates provide long-term energy and help jump-start your metabolism. I recommend scanning both websites to take a closer look at all their products as well as their nutritional facts, they are a great swap to introduce to your diet instead of processed grains!

https://www.onedegreeorganics.com/product_categories
http://www.foodforlife.com/product/breads/7-sprouted-grains-bread

Pasta Cravings? Here is a Healthy New Solution…

I am so excited to tell you all about the newest product I found (yes, at Whole Foods Market). Every time I go into that place I end up going up and down each aisle to see if there is anything new and intriguing on sale. This past weekend I stumbled upon “bean pasta”. This company, Explore Asian, has come out with “pasta,” but it is only made up of two ingredients: different types of beans and filtered water. I immediately got excited to try it and grabbed two different flavors; edamame fettuccini and adzuki bean spaghetti. These pastas are loaded with protein and fiber, low in carbs, high in iron content, and sodium free. You cook them as you would normal pasta, except, it only needs about 4-8 minutes depending on the type; just follow the packages instructions. Then, it is up to your imagination to dress them up how you would like!

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I created a fall vegetable pasta dish by adding roasted butternut squash, mushrooms, caramelized onions, and garlic then topped it with parmesan cheese and olive oil. The “pastas” themselves have a great deal of flavor so depending on the bean type you can pair vegetables and meats accordingly. These are an awesome way to reduce your carb intake and still get the feeling you are indulging in a great pasta dish!

Recipe:

Ingredients:
1/2 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 medium onion cut into wedges
1/2 package of sliced mushrooms
1 head garlic, separated into cloves and peeled
3 tablespoons olive oil plus more for serving
Garlic powder, Salt & Pepper to taste
1 packages Explore Asian Organic Adzuki Bean Spaghetti
1/4 cup rosemary
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese plus more for serving

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Divide the squash, mushrooms, onions, and garlic onto a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with garlic powder, salt and black pepper, toss to coat. Roast for 25 – 30 minutes or until the vegetables are tender and starting to brown, flipping the vegetables once with a spatula. I like to broil for the last 5 minutes or so to get the squash crispy.

While the vegetables are roasting, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Reserve a half a cup of the pasta cooking water, drain the pasta and rinse with cold or hot water (depends on the bean type). Return the pasta to the hot pot. Add the roasted vegetables to the pot along with the reserved pasta water, and lastly sprinkle in the rosemary and Parmesan cheese. Toss well to coat. Season to taste with more salt and pepper if desired.

Serve the pasta with a drizzle of olive oil and more Parmesan cheese if desired.

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Check out their website http://www.explore-asian.com/bean-pasta/ and head over to your closest Whole Foods Market and pick some up to try!