What are hearts of palm noodles? Here’s everything you need to know about this pasta alternative

Once upon a time, zoodles were all the rage in the world of pasta alternatives. These days, there’s a new kid on the block: hearts of palm noodles.

These pasta-like vegetable strands are making waves in the world of grain-free vegetarian noodles. If they’ve popped up on your radar lately—perhaps you’ve seen them on the grocery store shelves or been shouted at on your favorite food blogger’s Instagram feed—you might be wondering what’s up. okay, and if they’re worth all the fuss.

There are many reasons heart of palm pasta is growing in popularity – as we’ll explore – from its great taste and al dente texture to its ease of preparation and impressive fiber content.

Plus, these unusual noodles cater well to many different dietary needs and preferences. “Hearts of palm can be enjoyed in a variety of diets, from plant-based to low-carb,” Rhyan Geiger, RDN, owner of Phoenix Vegan Dietitian, tells SELF. They are good for people on a vegan diet and people with celiac disease (as well as wheat allergy or non-celiac gluten sensitivity) who want more good gluten-free pasta in their lives. .

This unique ingredient is as well suited to different flavor profiles as it is to different types of food. These babies are versatile, especially compared to some of their predecessors, such as zucchini or sweet potato noodles. (The former can easily become mushy if cooked too long, and the latter cannot be eaten raw, while hearts of palm noodles can.) From low-carb dinners with lots of weight to salads refreshing and crunchy for all your summer barbecues, it’s almost impossible that you can’t cook with this ingredient.

Are you already convinced to try hearts of palm pasta? Read on for everything you need to know about these trendy and tasty noodles.

What are hearts of palm pasta made of?

Hearts of palm noodles are usually made from a single main ingredient: hearts of palm, the heart (or “heart”) of certain varieties of palm.

This vegetable is derived from the inner part of particular varieties of palm trees native to South and Central America, according to the Michelin Guide. It is long and cylindrical, and often sold canned or potted and sometimes cut into rings. More recently, it has been more widely available as pre-cut noodles, from angel hair linguini to lasagna noodles.

In many cases, hearts of palm will be the only ingredient, but sometimes there are also small amounts of other ingredients. “Depending on the brand, hearts of palm noodles may contain added salt, as well as water,” says Geiger. Some brands also add citric acid as a preservative.

If you are trying to reduce your sodium intake, for example if you have high blood pressure and your doctor has recommended that you limit it as part of a heart-healthy diet, Geiger recommends that you seek out select brands who make their noodles only with hearts of palm (like Trader Joe’s). Alternatively, you can rinse the noodles to remove as much salt as possible before cooking to ensure that neither the flavor nor the sodium levels of your final dish are affected, Rachel Naar, RD, CDN, owner of Rachel Naar Nutrition LLC, says SELF.

Are hearts of palm pasta the same as Palmini?

Yes. Palmini is one of the best-known brands of hearts of palm pasta and helped popularize the product early on. So much so that people sometimes say “Palmini noodles” to refer to the generic hearts of palm pasta.

What do hearts of palm noodles taste like?

Hearts of palm noodles have a mostly neutral flavor with citrus notes that resemble those of an artichoke heart, Olivia Roszkowski, health-promoting culinary arts chef-instructor at the Culinary Education Institute , says SELF.

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