December 4th, 2019

A Risotto To Root For


We’ve scoured supermarkets and restaurants to find healthy FFactor® approved food swaps for high-calorie favorites. Now you can satisfy your cravings without sabotaging your waistline.* 


For the carb-conscious, vegetable pasta and rice substitutes are a godsend, and while spiralizing zucchini undoubtedly started the trend, no longer are the options limited to just zucchini noodles (otherwise known as zoodles) sloshed in marinara. Today, all sorts of vegetables are used to make better-for-you carb substitutes. In the pasta category alone, there’s elbows made from chickpeas, rotini from green lentils, and countless brightly colored spaghetti-like spirals of beets, carrots, sweet potatoes and squashes available at your local grocer. Of course, in the proliferation of vegetable-based carb creations, no vegetable has seen a transformation as cauliflower has. The white cruciferous vegetable is now a celebrated ingredient to make pizza crusts, lower-carb tater tots, pretzels and cheese crackers. It can be riced, mashed or smothered in sauces like buffalo, Alfredo and cheddar cheese to mimic the most decadent dishes—and people are eating it up, literally and figuratively.

However, just because something is made with cauliflower does not mean it’s as low cal as the veggie itself. The cauliflower gnocchi that can be found in the frozen food aisle of your supermarket is a 45g carb per 1-cup serving thing after all. Sure, the fat on a product like that is kept minimal, but unfortunately with cauliflower and other vegetable products, that’s not always the case. Perhaps a result of the keto craze, but in attempt to keep carbs low, many of these products end up being higher in fat than one might expect. Take Daily Harvest’s Cauliflower Rice + Pesto Harvest Bowl for example. Via subscription, Daily Harvest delivers “one step, no mess,” single-serve, vegan, gluten free bowls, but with their riff on a risotto, they deliver more than just a light low-carb cauliflower rice bite. In keeping the carb count low, Daily Harvest managed to bring the total fat up to 15g! That’s more fat than what’s in 4 Chick-Fil-A Chick-n-Minis®, or their Grilled Chicken Club, or a 6-piece order of Popeye’s Handcrafted Nuggets®, or an order of their cajun fries. No comment on the Chicken Sandwich wars otherwise, but you get the picture, 15g of fat for a measly bowl of riced cauliflower? Not a good deal, even it does taste like, as their site claims, pesto risotto.

To get your cauli risotto on responsibly, skip the subscription based bowls, and head over to the fresh produce department where you’ll find Urban Roots, a line of packaged veggies and veggie-based side kits that has a cauliflower risotto that’s well, worth rooting for. Urban Roots’ Risotto Style Cauliflower Rice Kit is made with just Brussels sprouts, English peas, mint, parmesan cheese—and riced cauliflower. Not only does this make it fresh flavored, but clean, and in contrast to Daily Harvest’s, low fat too. Serving to serving, Urban Roots’ risotto style cauli rice contains 70% less fat than Daily Harvest’s! As a result, a serving is a full 100 calories less. Yes, one serving is just 120 calories, and those calories aren’t empty either. Those 120 calories pack 5g fiber and 10g protein, making it the perfect addition to any meal. This quick-cooking kit is also nut free, gluten free, vegetarian, and super simple to prepare.

Perhaps the best part is that Urban Roots doesn’t stop with risotto style cauli rice kits. Parm not your thing? Feeling an Asian or Mediterranean flare? Their line of easy-to-make veggie side kits includes veggie noodles, like lo mein made with cabbage and a zucchini pomodoro, and 5 other delicious cauliflower rice kits—everything from Thai curry to tabouli. To find Urban Roots’ Veggie Side Kits, click here.


TO JOURNAL THIS FOOD: Urban Roots Risotto Style Cauliflower Rice – 5g carbohydrate, 5g fiber.

*The reason this product is a Step 2 product is because it contains peas (a Step 2 food). The peas are reflected in the journaling information. If you are on Step 1, journal accordingly, or feel free to leave out peas/ eat around.