Coconut is a delicious food that can be used in a variety of ways. Coconut oil can be used for cooking, baking, and in beauty products. Shredded coconut and fresh coconut can be used in smoothies, baked goods, or dried for a healthy alternative to sugary and salty snacks. Also, coconut milk-based yogurt is a nutritious, dairy-free alternative to cow’s milk yogurt. However, you may not have heard of another coconut product, called coconut aminos, that could add a unique flavor to your meals while helping you to stay on track with your low FODMAP lifestyle. Let’s learn a bit about coconut aminos and how you can add it to your low FODMAP lifestyle.
What is coconut aminos?
Coconut aminos is a soy-free alternative to soy sauce made from the coconut-blossom nectar from coconut palms. This “sap” is then fermented and blended with sea salt to give it its sweet and salty flavor. Coconut aminos is a condiment that resembles soy sauce and tastes great on just about any dish.
And as far as nutrition goes, coconut aminos is not only a soy-free version of soy sauce, but is also much less sodium. In fact, coconuts aminos contains about ¾ less sodium than your typical soy sauce product. Per 5 gram serving, coconut aminos contains only 5 calories, 1 gram of carbohydrate, and about 113 milligrams of sodium. Not to mention that it’s a gluten-free product safe for those with gluten allergies or intolerances.
Coconut aminos and FODMAPs
When it comes to FODMAPs, coconut aminos have not been confirmed by any expert source to be a low FODMAP certified food. However, since many related coconut products are low FODMAP in small to moderate amounts, then coconut aminos can be considered a low FODMAP food. And you only need a small amount of this delicious condiment to enjoy its savory-sweet flavor in your favorite dishes.
How to use coconut aminos
Although coconut aminos is typically used in place of soy sauce by those with certain food allergies or intolerances, it may not be a perfect replacement for soy sauce. It does contain a sweet flavor that is not found in soy sauce. However, it comes close as a soy sauce alternative and can be used in many ways.
- Salad dressing: You can use coconut aminos as a part of your next salad dressing recipe with a bit of olive or sesame oil. This dressing can be drizzled on raw or stir-fried vegetables for a touch of unique flavor.
- Dipping sauce: Coconut aminos can be used alone or mixed with ingredients like ginger or garlic as dipping sauces for various proteins like sashimi, tofu, or stir-fried meats.
- Marinade: If you want to really incorporate the flavor of coconut aminos in your dishes, then consider using it as a marinade. Just mix coconut aminos with a bit of oil, and then place this mixture in a bag or bowl with your favorite protein. Let the protein sit in the mixture in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight, depending on the depth of flavor you are looking for, and then cook as usual. Tofu is an especially good protein for this method since it tends to soak of flavor like a sponge.
- Veggie or rice topper: This condiment is also great for simply drizzling over vegetables or rice to add a bit of savory-sweet flavor. Be sure to watch how much you put on your dish though since a little goes a long way.
Take home message
The low FODMAP regimen can be a flavorful experience when you are creative and use all the low FODMAP resources at your dispense such as coconut aminos. Just a dash of this delicious condiment on your vegetables, protein dishes, and/or rice can help inject a sweet, but savory flavor to your daily meals. For other low FODMAP sauce choices, be sure to visit the Casa de Sante website to stock up on pantry essentials to keep your low FOMAP diet exciting.
-written by Staci Gulbin, MS, MEd, RD of LighttrackNutrition.com