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[Is Fried Rice Paleo??] Using Rice Alternatives, it Can Be!

By : | 0 Comments | On : June 5, 2020 | Category : Rice

Is Fried Rice Paleo

There are lots of different popular diets out there, and it can be difficult to keep them all straight. In addition to coving fried rice, I’m also going to review and simplify the basic principles of the Paleo Diet.

Is Fried Rice Paleo?

While traditional fried rice doesn’t adhere to the Paleo Diet, there are a couple tricks and substitutes that can be used to create a Paleo dish that rivals the original. Riced vegetables such as cauliflower and broccoli are a great substitute for regular rice and can be prepared much in the same way as fried rice for a similar texture and flavor profile.

What Exactly Does Paleo Mean?

The Paleo Diet is based upon the way humans ate more than a million years ago, hunting and gathering, before the invention of agriculture. It focuses on eating fruits and vegetables, lean meat and fish, and prohibits the consumption of processed foods, dairy, and cereal grains, including rice.

Paleo is short for Paleolithic, referring to the period of time that lasted from roughly 12,000 years ago to 2.5 million years ago, also referred to as the Old Stone Age. The idea of the Paleo Diet is to eat the only the foods that the human species has genetically adapted to over millions of years. However, since many of the foods consumed during the Paleolithic Era no longer exist, the Paleo Diet intends to replicate the foods that would have been consumed to the best of our ability in the modern era. This inevitably leads to some disagreement within the Paleo community concerning which foods should be and shouldn’t be allowed to consume on the diet.

What Do You Eat on the Paleo Diet?

If you’re still wondering what specifically you can and can’t eat on a Paleo Diet, check out this helpful table:

Paleo-Approved Foods  Foods to Avoid
Meat – while any meat is allowed, the Paleo diet focuses on eating lean, grass-fed meat whenever possibleCereal Grains– includes wheat, rice, corn, and pseudo-grains like millet, buckwheat, and quinoa. Although some argue that gluten-free grains are better for you, all grains contain anti-nutrients which prevent the body from absorbing nutrients
Fish – especially fish high in protein and Omega-3 fatty acids like salmon, and preferably wild-caughtLegumes – includes beans, peanuts, soy-based products, and vegetables that grow in a pod like peas, fava beans and snow peas. They all contain compounds that slow the absorption of nutrients
Eggs – eggs are not considered dairy and offer a lot of health benefitsDairy – milk and other dairy is an inflammatory food group
Nuts and Seeds – except peanuts (technically peanuts are legumes, not nuts)Processed Foods – includes refined sugar and table salt
Fresh Fruit and Vegetables– berries, oranges, apples, bananas, avocados, broccoli, carrots, peppers, onions, sweet potatoes, and more!Potatoes – this one is up for some debate in the Paleo community, but most try to avoid them because they are very high in carbohydrates. Sweet potatoes, however, are Paleo-approved because they have a much lower glycemic index
Healthy Oils – such as olive, walnut, flaxseed, macadamia, avocado, and coconut oil. Unrefined oils typically offer more health benefits than their refined counterpartsRefined Vegetable Oils  – such as canola, sunflower, safflower, and palm oil. Refined oils are heavily processed and typically contain a lot of preservatives
Paleo-Approved FoodsFoods to Avoid
Meat – while any meat is allowed, the Paleo diet focuses on eating lean, grass-fed meat whenever possibleCereal Grains– includes wheat, rice, corn, and pseudo-grains like millet, buckwheat, and quinoa. Although some argue that gluten-free grains are better for you, all grains contain anti-nutrients which prevent the body from absorbing nutrients
Fish – especially fish high in protein and Omega-3 fatty acids like salmon, and preferably wild-caughtLegumes – includes beans, peanuts, soy-based products, and vegetables that grow in a pod like peas, fava beans and snow peas. They all contain compounds that slow the absorption of nutrients
Eggs – eggs are not considered dairy and offer a lot of health benefitsDairy – milk and other dairy is an inflammatory food group
Nuts and Seeds – except peanuts (technically peanuts are legumes, not nuts)Processed Foods – includes refined sugar and table salt
Fresh Fruit and Vegetables– berries, oranges, apples, bananas, avocados, broccoli, carrots, peppers, onions, sweet potatoes, and more!Potatoes – this one is up for some debate in the Paleo community, but most try to avoid them because they are very high in carbohydrates. Sweet potatoes, however, are Paleo-approved because they have a much lower glycemic index
Healthy Oils – such as olive, walnut, flaxseed, macadamia, avocado, and coconut oil. Unrefined oils typically offer more health benefits than their refined counterpartsRefined Vegetable Oils  – such as canola, sunflower, safflower, and palm oil. Refined oils are heavily processed and typically contain a lot of preservatives

It’s important to note that these are guidelines and not hard rules. Always use your best judgment and read nutrition labels. If a label includes additives or artificial ingredients, that food would not be considered Paleo. And when in doubt, stick to natural, unprocessed foods like fresh fruit and vegetables.

How to Make Paleo Fried Rice

Traditional Chinese fried rice starts with oil, garlic, ginger, and white scallions in a hot wok, or skillet, over high heat. Add day-old cooked rice, eggs, soy sauce and voilà—you have fried rice. It’s also common to add accompaniments like meat and additional sautéed vegetables. 

To make a Paleo version of fried rice, you simply substitute two ingredients— the most important being rice. Rice can easily be swapped for riced cauliflower or broccoli. Riced vegetables are now sold in the prepared foods section of many grocery stores, or in the freezer section. You can also easily make your own riced vegetables by using a box grater or food processor to finely chop.  


Check Out Our Other Articles on Recipe Recon:


The second ingredient to replace is soy sauce. Since soy sauce is derived from soybeans and wheat, it’s not considered Paleo either. However, coconut aminos is an excellent substitution for soy sauce. Made from fermented coconut palm sap, coconut aminos is extremely comparable to soy sauce in terms of color and consistency, and adds a similar savory-salty taste. If you’re unfamiliar with this product, I’d recommend Braggs Coconut Liquid Aminos—it’s my personal favorite. With these two quick swaps, you’ll be on your way to making a delicious paleo fried rice in no time!

The last thing to consider is whether or not your additional garnishes are Paleo. For example, peas are a common addition to fried rice, but because they are legumes, they are not considered Paleo. Other legumes and legume-based foods that you want to avoid on a Paleo diet include tofu, beans, and peanuts. Potatoes and corn, although technically vegetables, are also not allowed on a strict Paleo diet. Most other vegetables and meat that you might want to add should be ok— carrots, onion and bean sprouts are all Paleo-approved. Double check the Paleo principles outlined in the table above to make sure your meal adheres to the guidelines.


Sources:

https://thepaleodiet.com/

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/coconut-aminos#what-is-it?

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/paleo-diet-meal-plan-and-menu#section2

https://www.britannica.com/event/Paleolithic-Period

https://www.menshealth.com/nutrition/a29891203/are-potatoes-paleo/#:~:text=%E2%80%9CSweet%20potatoes%20are%20the%20only,a%20goal%20of%20eating%20paleo.%E2%80%9D

https://ultimatepaleoguide.com/refined-oils-paleo/#Why_Aren%E2%80%99t_Refined_Oils_Paleo

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