Italian grandmothers might disagree, but often the noodle is not always the most important part of a pasta dish. Many times the role of noodles are nothing more than conduits for a good sauce, so why not pick the healthiest option? There are endless benefits to incorporating low-carb noodles into your diet, they can be a great and tasty way to increase your overall fiber and veggie intake, two things many Americans are lacking in their diet.
“If you’re diabetic or watching your carbohydrate intake, low-carb pasta alternatives can be a great mealtime option that gives a similar taste and texture as the real thing without excessively spiking blood sugar levels,” according to Deputy Director of the Good Housekeeping Institute Nutrition Lab, Stefani Sassos, MS, RDN, CDN. “They can also be a convenient way to incorporate more veggies, vegetables, fiber and protein into your diet.”
Registered dietitians in the Good Housekeeping Institute Nutrition Lab tested dozens of pasta and pasta alternatives, analyzing nutrition facts, ingredient lists, taste, texture, cooking times and more. Our top picks for the best low-carb noodles all have about 30 grams of net carbs or less. We prioritized high-fiber and high-protein picks as well. Our experts looked for minimal ingredient lists and picks with better texture and taste profiles.
Our top picks:
Below you’ll find the best low-carb noodles and pasta alternatives according to our taste tests. Keep reading for more information on how we selected the best low-carb noodles, plus what to look out for while shopping for them.
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Best Prebiotic Pasta
Yellow Pea Pasta
|Ingredients||Whole yellow peas (with skin)|
|Nutrition info (2-ounce serving)||200 calories, 1.5 g fat, 0 g sat fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 0 mg sodium, 36 g total carbs, 7 g dietary fiber, 1 g total sugar, 12 g protein|
Best High-Protein Pasta
Organic Edamame & Mung Bean Fettuccine
|Ingredients||Organic edamame flour (green soybeans), organic mung bean flour|
|Nutrition info (2-ounce serving)||180 calories, 4 g fat, 0.5 g sat fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 0 mg sodium, 20 g total carbs, 14 g dietary fiber, 3 g total sugar, 0 gm added sugar, 24 g protein|
Best Chickpea Pasta
|Nutrition info (2-ounce serving)||190 calories, 3.5 g fat, 0.5 g sat fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 0 mg sodium, 34 g total carbs, 8 g dietary fiber (including 4 g soluble fiber, 4 g insoluble fiber), 2 g total sugar, 11 g protein )|
Best Wheat Pasta
Single Ingredient Wheat Pasta
|Ingredients||High fiber durum wheat semolina|
|Nutrition info (1/2-cup serving)||180 calories, 1g fat, 0 g sat fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 0 mg sodium, 39 g total carbs, 8 g fiber, 1 g total sugar, 9 g protein|
Best High-Fiber Pasta
Light Rotini Pasta
|Ingredients||Enriched durum wheat semolina, modified wheat starch and wheat gluten|
|Nutrition info (1/2-cup serving)||110 calories, 1g fat, 0 g sat fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 100 mg sodium, 41 g total carbs, 17 g net carbs, 24 g dietary fiber (including 2 g soluble fiber, 22 g insoluble fiber), 1 g total sugar , 7 g protein.|
Best Butternut Squash Pasta
Butternut Squash Veggie Spirals
|Nutrition info (3/4 cup frozen, 1/2 cup prepared)||50 calories, 0 g fat, 0 g sat fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 0 mg sodium, 12 g total carbs, 1 g dietary fiber, 2 g total sugar, 1 g protein|
Best Shirataki Noodles
Low-Carb Konjac Pasta
|Ingredients||Konjac powder, oat powder, water, calcium hydroxide|
|Nutrition info (3.5-ounce serving)||4.5 calories, 0g fat, 0 g sat fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 10 mg sodium, 0g total carbs, 0 net carbs, 2 g fiber, 0g total sugar, 0g protein|
Best Hearts of Palm Pasta
Hearts of Palm Linguine
|Ingredients||Sliced hearts of palm, water, natural sea salt, citric acid|
|Nutrition info (per 75 g serving)||20 calories, 0 g fat, 0 g sat fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 60 mg sodium, 4 g total carbs, 2 g fiber, 0 g total sugar, 1 g protein|
Best Spaghetti Squash Pasta
Organic Dried Spaghetti Squash
|Ingredients||Organic spaghetti squash|
|Nutrition info (1/2-cup serving)||30 calories, 0 gm total fat, 0 mg sodium, 6 g total carbs, 2 g fiber, 4g total sugar, 0 gm added sugar, 2 g protein|
Best Edamame Pasta
|Ingredients||Organic edamame bean flour (green soybeans)|
|Nutrition info (2-ounce serving)||180 calories, 3.5 gm total fat, 0.5 gm saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 0 mg sodium, 20g total carbs, 13 g fiber, 3 g total sugar, 24 g protein|
Best Zucchini Pasta
Zucchini Veggie Spirals
|Nutrition info (3/4 cup frozen, 1/2 cup prepared)||15 calories, 0 gm total fat, 0 gm saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 0 mg sodium, 2 g total carbs, 1 g fiber, 1 g total sugar, 1 g protein|
How we selected the best low carb pastas
At the Good Housekeeping Institute, we are continuously testing all types of foods, food products and nutrition-related services in every category, from healthy snacks and supplements to food subscription boxes and meal delivery services. Our experts are committed to bringing you the best of the best when it comes to quality, performance, flavor, nutrition and more.
Our registered dietitians evaluated dozens of pastas and pasta alternatives, focusing on ingredient lists, fiber counts and protein content. We also took into account cooking times, texture, taste and overall food quality. Our top picks take into account a wide variety of dietary preferences, from high-fiber and high-protein options to gluten-free and soy-free offerings.
How to choose the best low carb pasta for you
When choosing a low-carb or alternative pasta, start by considering what you want to achieve. If your goal is primarily about reducing your carbohydrate intake, you might want to consider some of the veggie or shirataki noodle options on this list. If your goal is to increase your fiber intake, vegetable-based pasta could be a great place to start. If you are looking for a mouth-feel similar to traditional pasta or are dealing with picky eaters, we recommend wheat pasta which provides a more familiar experience.
Why trust Good Housekeeping?
As a dietitian and low carb pasta enthusiast and coming from an Italian background, Amy Fischer is well positioned as an expert in the field of healthy pasta alternatives. She is always looking for ways to get more fiber, veggies and vegetables in her diet and she can’t pass up a healthy vehicle for a good sauce. She has worked as a recipe developer for several food companies, and she also has extensive experience in the commercial side of the food business.
As Deputy Director of the Good Housekeeping Institute Nutrition Lab, Stefani Sassos, MS, RDN, CSO, CDN, NASM-CPT, handles all nutrition content, product testing and evaluation. Growing up with a family in the restaurant business, Sassos was able to combine her nutrition expertise with culinary skills taught to her by her mother and grandmother. She is an avid home cook and a meal prep expert, and she is passionate about incorporating unique flavors from different cuisines into her dishes. Stefani relies on low-carb, high-protein pasta alternatives several times a week to help create convenient and nutrient-dense dinners for her and her family.
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