When first reading the endless looking list of high FODMAP foods I was convinced I was going to be living a life of tasteless food forever. Previously throwing in as many cloves of garlic, onions and mushrooms into every dish I cooked, and covering with cheese, my foodie life seemed genuinely over!
However, over the years I’ve learnt that being low in FODMAP doesn’t mean low in taste! As well as all the brilliant gluten free stuff in the supermarkets, I have also found some other really good swaps that will keep your food tasting delicious and your tummy feeling happy!
Here’s a list of my top five favourites (there may be about five sequel posts to this as I could go on…)
1. Garlic oil!
Usually garlic is a massive no-no on the low FODMAP diet (especially for me – it’s one of my biggest triggers), however there is a get-around; garlic oil! The reason that garlic infused oil is safe as the FODMAPs in garlic (fructans) are water soluble, but as water doesn’t mix with oil sit means the frunctans do not mix into the oil, so as long as you go for the ones with no bits you should be fine!
I use the one calorie spray in pretty much everything I cook as love garlic! Or for a stronger taste the pouring oil is delicious…
2. Spring onion and leeks
As I mentioned, onions were another one that I found hard to let go. I used it in ever sauce, every salad and pretty much every meal. Luckily – there is an alternative! The green bits of spring onion are low in FODMAP (just avoid the white!) and work brilliantly in salads, salsa, fajita’s and stir fry’s.
The green part of leeks also follow the same rule (in moderate serving sizes) and taste great in tomato sauces, soups and the list goes on…
3. Yoghurt (also used as a sauce)
I don’t think we ever have less than three tubs of alpro dairy free plain or coconut yoghurt in the fridge. Not only do I use it for my overnight oats, I also use it as a healthier alternative to mayo. Although most mayonnaise brands are FODMAP friendly, I am an absolute mayo fiend so cutting it down is definitely a good thing. I usually mix 2 tablespoons of yoghurt with a squirt of light mayo, paprika and half a squirt of garlic oil spray and enjoy!
Technically, cheddar is part of the many cheeses that are low in FODMAPS within a certain serving size (see full list at alittlebityummy.com). Research states that <40g cheddar is safe, however I think lactose is something I’m a little bit more sensitive too (plus I like more than 40g!) so to be safe I stick to lactose free.
Arla mature cheddar is the only one I have found that doesn’t taste like rubber – it really is as good as the real thing! I use it when cooking for family and friends and nobody can ever tell the difference so I would highly recommend!
5. Maple syrup
Honey was something I didn’t realise was high FODMAPs for a good year! I don’t think it is a massive trigger for me in small doses, but when I became obsessed with overnight oats for breakfast it soon took a toll. Alongside honey in the naughty corner sits, agave, fruit sugar and a lot of other sugars and sweeteners – however, luckily we still have a fairly decent list, including maple syrup! I use this not only on my oats, pancakes and other sweet treats, but also add it into marinades, glazes and sticky asian sauces!