Flagels, Chaffles, and Other Curious Bread Substitutes for Low-Carb Diets

Chaffles - Two Ingredients: Egg and Cheese Waffles


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Chaffles - Two Ingredients: Egg and Cheese Waffles

Curious Bread Substitutes for Low-Carb Diets

In food trends, there's a fine line between creative and just plain crazy. The latest trend? Low carb bread substitutes. While many think that eliminating carbs from their diets is the key to weight loss, slapping together a cheesy, mayo-laden filling may still cancel out your efforts. Stacey Krawczyk, MS, RD, and the consulting Registered Dietitian for the Grain Foods Foundation, says, “Regardless of any wraps or bread swaps, and given that nearly half of all adults in the US consume one or more sandwiches on any given day, it’s essential to consider that what you put in your sandwich is just as important as whatever the bread used, in determining overall nutrition.” Still want to eliminate carbs but still eat “bread”? We found some tasty carb alternatives to satisfy your cravings. Many of these on this list are easy to find at the grocery store or have easy to prepare recipes.

Related: 15 Simple, Tasty Sandwiches That Cost $1 or Less to Make

Plant-Based Cauliflower Tacos on Soft Corn Tortillas
Elan Irving/istockphoto

Mexican Breakfast and Cauliflower Wraps

According to Bernardo, cauliflower and Mexican food are a perfect combination. “I've found that cauliflower wraps taste best when used for breakfast tacos or burritos. Mexican chorizo, a couple of scrambled eggs, and a little melted cheese all wrapped up in a cauliflower wrap makes for an amazing breakfast." 

Related: 20 Healthy Foods You’ve Been Preparing All Wrong

Whole Wheat Flat Bagels


We had to visit NYC to taste an authentic flagel, a flat, dense bagel so all the flavor, less fluff and more texture. This is a crusty perch for any favorite protein, and the crisper bite melds well with cream cheese and other cheeses, too. Caveat: They are the same mass as a regular bagel, just smooshed before baking.

Related: The Best Bagel Shops Across the Country

Savory keto two ingredients waffles - chaffles
Grain-free Tortillas

Grain-Free Tortillas

Quesadillas and tacos need a tortilla, but when wheat and corn are off the menu, try newcomer Siete. Siete is a family owned and operated grain-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, and soy-free Mexican-American food company, and their grain-free almond and cassava flour tortilla pairs well with any traditional Mexican dishes. Overall, they score a 4.2 out of 5 from those who purchased on Amazon, citing the flavor and easy swappable texture of the tortilla. 

Related: The Most Popular Items on Amazon, According to Our Readers

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Ezekiel Bread

Ezekiel Bread

Chef Vicky Cano from Mealfan is a recipe developer obsessed with high-quality food that satisfies and energizes the body. “Ezekiel Bread, named for a Bible verse that mentions the ancient process of bread making has organic grains, legumes, wheat, barley, spelt, millet, lentils, and soybeans. Some of the breads contain sorghum and sesame. One slice contains 15 grams of carbohydrate so people can introduce this into their low-carb diet.” But think before you grab a loaf. “This is unsuitable for people with gluten intolerance and celiac disease.”

Related: 25 Best Gluten-Free Finds at Costco

“Oopsie Bread”

“Oopsie Bread”

Oopsie bread contains less than a gram of carbohydrates. Heloise Blause, founder of Home Kitchen Land and a former professional chef, gives it a thumbs-up. “My favorite low-carb bread substitute is ‘Oopsie bread.’ It's fluffy with a similar shape to buns. Beat three eggs in a large bowl until completely liquified. Add a half-cup of Greek yogurt or cream cheese, a pinch of salt, mix until the dough resembles a heavy scrambled egg. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper, spoon the dough out in evenly sized pancake shapes, four inches across. Cook at 150 degrees Fahrenheit for 25 minutes and let them cool.” It works with a variety of fillings.

Related: 18 Best Chain Restaurants for Keto and Other Low-Carb Diets

Diverse Keto Dishes

Almond Quick Bread

Registered dietician Kylie Ivanir owns Within Nutrition and uses this recipe for a bread alternative. “By combining 2 eggs, 1 cup almond flour, 1 tsp baking powder, and ¼ cup Greek yogurt and microwaving for 3 minutes, you can have a quick bread that is high in protein, fiber, and healthy fats but low in carbohydrates.” 

Related: 25 ‘Superfoods’ That Aren’t as Super as You Think

Coconut Wraps

Coconut Wraps

Loaded with fiber and neutral in flavor making them perfect to pair with a variety of traditional fillings, Ivanir adds that coconut wraps are relatively new and also a great swap for bread. “Coconut wraps from NUCO are also a great higher fat, low carb option.”

Related: 50 Delicious Diabetic Dessert Recipes Everyone Will Love

“Yeast Bread” Flavor, No Carbs

“Yeast Bread” Flavor, No Carbs

Food blogger Kristy Bernardo of The Wicked Noodle has done exhaustive taste tests for bread swaps. She says, "For a traditional sandwich, I use Aldi's zero net carb bread with sliced chicken, bacon, crispy lettuce, tomato, and mayo. The bread is soft and has a great texture. It's the one product I've found that's exactly like regular yeast bread."

Related: 40 Low-Carb Snacks From Trader Joe’s You’ll Actually Enjoy

Jicama Wraps
Trader Joe's

Jicama Wraps

Bernardo’s food blog is loaded with keto-friendly ideas, some of which can be picked up on your next grocery run. She says, “Try Trader Joe’s jicama wraps for a lighter lunch. Seared tuna with a little cabbage is the perfect filling for tuna tacos!” Not just for tacos, one Reddit fan raved about egg salad as a perfect protein packed filling for the popular new wrap.

Stuffed mushrooms on a rough wooden surface

Portobello Caps

Perfect for a low-carb meal that satisfies, meaty portobellos make perfect “buns” for savory meat, cheese, or veggie fillings. Bernardo says, “I like to swap out portobello mushrooms and fill those with some rotisserie chicken that's been tossed in buffalo or barbecue sauce, some spinach and shredded cheese.”

Related: 14 Cheap, Meatless Meals for Calorie Counters

Lettuce wraps with chicken, carrot, peanuts and scallion. Stuffed iceberg lettuce leaves with chicken

Lettuce Not Forget the Leaf

Megan Ayala, fitness and health expert at Patricia and Carolyn says, "Lettuce wraps are a great replacement for bread because of their low-calorie count, vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, and more. Flexible lettuce leaves allow you to easily fold and hold them to eat. Butter lettuce is soft and sweet, and Iceberg lettuce has a crunchiness that gives a great taste." Lettuce wraps pair well with flavorful chicken and tuna salads as well as anything savory and spicy like Asian Chicken Lettuce Cups.

Related: 22 Quick and Easy Cold Salads for People Who Hate Lettuce

savoy cabbage rolls stufed with meat and vegetables

Cabbage Leaf

Tiffany McCauley, author and food blogger for The Gracious Pantry, says: "My favorite bread swap: green cabbage leaves. They have a wonderfully mild but appropriate flavor for sandwiches and wraps, they are sturdier than lettuce wraps which tend to fall apart if you stuff too much inside them, and have a very satisfying crunch and chew as well. As a bonus, they really do fill you up like bread." 

Naan Toasties
Cafe Spice

Naan Toasties

Indian and Thai food have a lower carb option for stuffing and mopping up the delicious sauces. Cafe Spice offers Naan Toasties, which are fashioned after the Indian Mumbai Toastie. While each toastie has 38 grams of carbs, they might be a special treat for someone searching for international flavor. They are found at Whole Food Market North Atlantic locations, Gelson's Markets and Fresh Thyme Markets.

Related: 29 Must-Try International Street Foods Under $5

Fried eggplant

Eggplant Discs

Grace Woinicz, CEO at The Brilliant Kitchen, says, "For those looking for low-carb alternatives to bread, try eggplant. Make thick slices or disks of eggplant by cutting the larger end of it. Season the disks and bake to prepare them as the base for your burger or sandwich. Eggplant is the top low-carb food and is high in fiber which makes a wonderful option." Purewow.com has many baked eggplant “swap” recipes too.

Related: 18 Foods That Will Help You Hydrate

Hand holds pan with pancake, cooking at home

Gluten-Free Wraps

The two-ingredient gluten-free wraps you can make yourself have 10 grams of carbs and 11 grams of protein. Amy Roskelley of Healthbeet says, "The gluten-free wrap tastes like a crepe. It's great for lunch, made with ham and cheese. Delicious for dinner, made with shredded chicken. And it's perfect for breakfast, made with scrambled eggs and cheese."

Cheese Taco Shells
Baking Beauty

Cheese Taco Shells

One ingredient and a simple baking technique will have you ditching carb-laden boxed taco shells. Krystle Smith of BakingBeauty offers her easy homemade Cheese Taco Shells recipe. She says, "These are super crunchy taco shells made out of cheese that are keto and gluten free."

Related: 30 Delicious, Cheap Ways to Fill Your Tacos

CaliFlour Flatbread
CaliFlour Flatbread

CaliFlour Flatbread

Mackenzie Burgess, RDN, registered dietitian nutritionist and recipe developer at Cheerful Choices, recommends Cali'flour Foods Flatbread for those cutting carbs. She says, "These flatbreads are made from mozzarella, egg whites, and cauliflower. One flatbread contains 5 grams of protein and just 2 grams of net carbs, and provides important nutrients like vitamin C, fiber, and iron. Try them with turkey, cheese, and lettuce for a protein-packed wrap. These are also a perfect vessel for your morning eggs and avocado slices."

Keto Focaccia
Healthy Recipes Blog

Keto Focaccia

Yes, low-carb options can get an Italian flair. Vered DeLeeuw, founder of Healthy Recipes Blog says, "I make cloud bread, keto bagels, and lettuce wraps. But my real love is keto focaccia. The main ingredients are shredded mozzarella, cream cheese, almond flour, and an egg. I flatten the dough in a square baking dish, use my fingertips to make dimples, and scatter rosemary leaves on top. A light sprinkle of coarse salt and a spray of olive oil, and into the oven it goes.”

Related: 40 Foods That Americans Are Missing Out On

Parmesan Folio Wraps
Parmesan Folios

Parmesan Folio Wraps

Popular Parmesan Folio wraps are a good choice for the Caesar salad or salad as a sandwich fan. The intense saltiness of the Parmesan cheese lends itself best to a fresher filling. The flavor is good enough to also be used as a cracker swap or a chip replacement, and is a convenient microwavable item that is found in most major grocery chains and Costco.