• 10 Best Rice Substitutes in the Philippines 2021 - Buying Guide Reviewed By Nutritionist-Dietitian 1
  • 10 Best Rice Substitutes in the Philippines 2021 - Buying Guide Reviewed By Nutritionist-Dietitian 2
  • 10 Best Rice Substitutes in the Philippines 2021 - Buying Guide Reviewed By Nutritionist-Dietitian 3
  • 10 Best Rice Substitutes in the Philippines 2021 - Buying Guide Reviewed By Nutritionist-Dietitian 4
  • 10 Best Rice Substitutes in the Philippines 2021 - Buying Guide Reviewed By Nutritionist-Dietitian 5

10 Best Rice Substitutes in the Philippines 2021 - Buying Guide Reviewed By Nutritionist-Dietitian

A meal isn't a meal without rice, is what the saying goes for us Filipinos. Our love of rice is given that even restaurants offer unli-rice options. However, you can always eat healthier, especially for those who need to change their diet for health reasons, especially diabetes, insulin resistance, and polycystic ovary syndrome or PCOS. We know it is not easy - and we don't always have to - completely let go of rice, but every journey starts with the first step. Introducing rice substitutes!


Rice substitutes can be composed of different foods, from grains to bread. There are many options in the market that will make you feel as if you were eating rice. It's a great way to eat healthy while satisfying our cravings and add variety. We have rounded up the top 10 rice substitutes to help you get started to a healthier you. Make choosing easier by reading our buying guide with some comments and tips from nutritionist-dietitian Jo Sebastian!

Experts featured in this article

Jo Sebastian
  • Last updated: 07-26-2021
  • 1,269 views
Table of Contents

In Collaboration With Nutritionist-Dietitian Jo Sebastian

In Collaboration With Nutritionist-Dietitian Jo Sebastian

Jo Sebastian is a Registered Nutritionist-Dietitian who graduated BS Community Nutrition from the University of the Philippines, Diliman. Throughout the past year, she has worked with Uniqlo, Adidas, Rebel Fitness app, and more to make nutrition fun, easy and accessible. She believes that life is not about restricting food but through simple lifestyle and dietary changes to attain our optimal health, we can reach our full potential.


To know more about Jo Sebastian, like and follow her on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and don't forget to subscribe to her YouTube channel!

How to Choose a Rice Substitute - Buying Guide

If you are thinking of replacing rice in your diet, rice substitutes make neat alternatives if you can't let go of rice just yet. This way, mealtimes can still feel complete while making sure you feel satisfied. Not all substitutes are exact carbohydrate substitutes to rice, but they do give that ulam -and-rice feel.

Select According to the Source

There are a lot of available options in the market, you don’t have to stick to one variety. This way you are not as umay on one product.

Make Your Gains via Whole Grains

Make Your Gains via Whole Grains

When we say whole grain this is comprised of all three parts, which are bran, endosperm, and germ; these are mostly unrefined and have no added sugar. Eating whole grains is beneficial for the body as it is packed with many important nutrients such as minerals, fibers, and vitamins. 


This is highly recommended for people who want to eat healthier or those who have dietary restrictions or health concerns. It can lower the risk of heart disease and diabetes.


Notable whole grains include oats, barley, bulgur, couscous, freekeh, and faro. Whole grains have the closest resemblance to rice as regards texture, which makes it easier for those who are beginning to transition their diet. 

Jo Sebastian
Nutritionist-Dietitian
Jo Sebastian

Most of the vitamins and minerals in grains are found in the germ, while most of the fiber is in the bran. Whole grains have more fiber, which allows for better blood sugar control and satiety to help you feel full for longer.


Refined grains are ones that usually have their germ and bran removed and are lower in fiber and some nutrients.

Get Healthier With Super Seeds

Get Healthier With Super Seeds

Seeds are commonly associated as grains, but it is classified as a pseudocereal or pseudo-grain, which means it does not have all 3 components to be considered as a whole grain. Most seeds have higher fiber and protein content compared to whole grains, which can aid in weight loss.


This is great for regulating blood sugar and lowering cholesterol levels. Quinoa is a perfect example of seeds as well as amaranth. Its texture is similar to oat and brown rice, which makes it palate-friendly.

Jo Sebastian
Nutritionist-Dietitian
Jo Sebastian

Because seeds are higher in protein and fiber, they increase satiety which can help aid weight loss.

Freshness on Focus: Befriend Your Vegetables

Freshness on Focus: Befriend Your Vegetables

Everyone is no stranger to vegetables, so it is not as intimidating to incorporate into your diet. It is one of the food groups you could eat in bulk given its high nutritious content. Vegetables like cauliflower are low in calories and high in vitamins and antioxidants


It makes for a healthier diet without adding too much to your calorie intake. Cauliflower rice and broccoli rice are the best examples of vegetables as substitutes for rice. They are commonly eaten if you want to lose weight since they are comprised mostly of water and have low-calorie content.

Jo Sebastian
Nutritionist-Dietitian
Jo Sebastian

Although vegetables are not exactly carbohydrate equivalent to grains as a replacement, they can add bulk to your grains and allow one to feel more satisfied even when they are trying to lose weight.


More often than not, we don’t meet our recommended vegetable servings, so adding these can help us get more nutrients in as well!

Underground Vitamins: Root Crops Are the Way to Go

Underground Vitamins: Root Crops Are the Way to Go

Root crops are native to the Philippines. Therefore, they are an inexpensive option if you want to swap out rice. As they are deeply integrated into Philippine cuisine, it is readily available in markets and is not new to us. They are an excellent source of dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals, which can aid in digestion. 


However, it has a relatively high amount of carbohydrates – this can be a deal-breaker for those who want to regulate blood sugar carbohydrate intake. Potatoes and sweet potatoes are prime examples of root crops. Shirataki rice made from the konjac yam is another option if you want your food to resemble rice

Jo Sebastian
Nutritionist-Dietitian
Jo Sebastian

Because root crops are complex carbohydrates they often increase satiety in meals. Potatoes are actually found to be one of the most satiating food items out there! However, carbohydrate-wise, they are on par with rice, so pairing them with protein, and fats should help in reducing their impact on your blood sugar.

Let’s Get BREAD-y: Nutritious and Delicious Bread of Your Choice

Let’s Get BREAD-y: Nutritious and Delicious Bread of Your Choice

Another familiar substitute for rice is bread. It is readily available in bakeries and supermarkets as much as it is affordable. It can be eaten with ulam or as a meal in itself. When adding palaman, avoid choosing those with lots of preservatives and added sugars.  


One of the latest buzzes on the Internet is sourdough bread. It uses wild yeast and lactic acid, which is naturally present in the flour as a result of fermentation instead of using packaged yeast. It is easier to digest and has a high fiber content, which is great for those who struggle with their blood sugar levels.


As the name suggests, it is noted for its tangy and rustic taste. It can take some getting used to, so another option is darker bread such as rye or whole wheat instead of the usual white ones.

Jo Sebastian
Nutritionist-Dietitian
Jo Sebastian

Sourdough is also a lower gluten option than regular bread so it is easier on the stomach for those with IBS or gluten intolerances!


When choosing bread, opt for whole-grain over multigrain! And watch out for the ingredient lists, make sure whole grains or any grains are listed as the first ingredient. It is also a good idea to pair your bread with a protein, fat, and fiber source for more satisfaction!

Purchase in Small Quantities if You're Still Trying Out the Product

Purchase in Small Quantities if You're Still Trying Out the Product

If you are just beginning to remove rice from your diet, we recommend you try out the product first to see if the taste is agreeable to you. There is no harm in starting small if it means reducing your potential waste!


This means purchasing them in small quantities to avoid having a lot of leftovers in case you don’t like the taste. You would also avoid having your products reach their expiration date before you are able to consume them.

Jo Sebastian
Nutritionist-Dietitian
Jo Sebastian

Remember that you don’t necessarily have to remove rice from your diet! Especially if it is something you enjoy or it brings satiety to your meals. But it is always great to have more variety for your carbohydrate sources!

10 Best Rice Substitutes to Buy Online

Who says eating healthy has to taste bland? These top 10 rice substitutes are crunchy, nutty, and tasty. They certainly dispel the notion that healthy foods taste boring. 


Disclaimer: These products are recommendations made by our team at mybest Philippines. Our expert, Jo Sebastian, is not affiliated with, nor is she endorsing any of the brands we mention below.

**Prices may vary depending on the website and their campaign period**

1
SourceWhole Grain
Calories85.5 per 1/4 Cup, Dry
Fiber2.7 g
Protein7.6 g
Carbohydrates16.7 g
Sugar0.9 g
2

Caulibabe.Riced Cauliflower

From ₱900

SourceVegetable
Calories20 per 1 Cup
Fiber2 g
Protein2 g
Carbohydrates4 g
Sugar2 g
3
SourceWhole Grain
Calories147 per 40 g
Fiber4 g
Protein4. 9 g
Carbohydrates25.2 g
Sugar0.4 g
4
SourceRoot Crop
Calories5 per 100 g
Fiber3 g
Protein0 g
Carbohydrates3 g
Sugar0 g
5

WildflourSourdough Bread

From ₱311

SourceBread
Calories90 per Slice
Fiber0 g
Protein3 g
Carbohydrates17 g
Sugar0 g
6

ZorziCouscous (Medium Grain)

From ₱280.3

SourceWhole Grain
Calories226 per 1/3 Cup
Fiber2 g
Protein7 g
Carbohydrates45 g
Sugar1 g
7

Kitchen & LoveFarro With Quinoa With Grilled Vegetables and Herbs

From ₱189

SourceWhole Grain
Calories300 per Package
Fiber8 g
Protein9 g
Carbohydrates50 g
Sugar4 g
8
SourceRoot Crop
Calories87 per 100 g
Fiber2.2 g
Protein2 g
Carbohydrates17 g
Sugar0.8 g
9
SourceSeeds
Calories170 per 1/4 Cup
Fiber3 g
Protein6 g
Carbohydrates32 g
Sugar1 g
10

The Daily KneadSourdough Multigrain Loaf

From ₱345

SourceBread
Calories92.5 per Slice
Fiber0.8 g
Protein3.8 g
Carbohydrates18.1 g
Sugar0.8 g

Compare the Best Rice Substitutes

Image
1
The Green Tummy Organic White Quinoa 1

The Green Tummy

2
Caulibabe. Riced Cauliflower 1

Caulibabe.

3
Quaker Rolled Oats 1

Quaker

4
Nutrifinds Shirataki Rice 1

Nutrifinds

5
Wildflour Sourdough Bread 1

Wildflour

6
Zorzi Couscous (Medium Grain) 1

Zorzi

7
Kitchen & Love Farro With Quinoa With Grilled Vegetables and Herbs 1

Kitchen & Love

8
Large Potato 1

9
UrbanGreens Market Organic Amaranth Seeds 1

UrbanGreens Market

10
The Daily Knead Sourdough Multigrain Loaf 1

The Daily Knead

Name

Organic White Quinoa

Riced Cauliflower

Rolled Oats

Shirataki Rice

Sourdough Bread

Couscous (Medium Grain)

Farro With Quinoa With Grilled Vegetables and Herbs

Large Potato

Organic Amaranth Seeds

Sourdough Multigrain Loaf

Features

Highly Nutritious and Delicious

Eat More for Less With Cauliflower

Heart-Healthy Companion From Breakfast to Dinner

Subtle and Chewy - Great for Sauces and Stir Fry

Taste and Substance in a Wholesome Bread

Dinner and Dessert Combo in One

A Quick and Healthy Meal Enriched With Vitamins and Minerals

Root Crop Gold and All-Around Meal Staple

Aid Digestion With Fiber-Rich Amaranth

Start the Day Right With Multigrain Bread

Price Starts at₱709₱900₱189₱440₱311₱280.3₱189₱130₱375₱345
SourceWhole GrainVegetableWhole GrainRoot CropBreadWhole GrainWhole GrainRoot CropSeedsBread
Calories85.5 per 1/4 Cup, Dry20 per 1 Cup147 per 40 g5 per 100 g90 per Slice226 per 1/3 Cup300 per Package87 per 100 g170 per 1/4 Cup92.5 per Slice
Fiber2.7 g2 g4 g3 g0 g2 g 8 g2.2 g3 g0.8 g
Protein7.6 g2 g4. 9 g0 g3 g7 g9 g2 g6 g3.8 g
Carbohydrates16.7 g4 g25.2 g3 g17 g45 g50 g17 g32 g18.1 g
Sugar0.9 g2 g0.4 g0 g0 g1 g4 g0.8 g1 g0.8 g
Link

Low-Carb Cauliflower Fried Rice

Fried rice is easy to cook and it saves you money as you can use whatever leftover meats you have. Here is a low-carb option if you miss eating fried rice. It's also a tasty way to incorporate your veggies. 


Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 3 slices of bacon
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 sliced scallions
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large eggs, beaten

Procedure:

1. Cut cauliflower into chunks, removing the large stem in the center, and blitz in a food processor. Alternatively, you could use a box grater.

2. Pat the cauliflower dry with paper towels to remove excess moisture. Set aside. 

3. Cook bacon in a pan and remove once done. In the same pan, saute the cauliflower and add the soy sauce, fish sauce, and sesame oil. Stir it well and add the scallions.

4. Move the cauliflower to the side and add the minced garlic and ginger, mix well. Crack some black pepper over the rice. 

5. Cook the scrambled egg and incorporate it into the rice. Add the bacon. Your cauliflower rice is done. Enjoy!

Frequently Asked Questions Answered by Jo Sebastian

Frequently Asked Questions Answered by Jo Sebastian

Here are some of the most asked questions on the web regarding rice substitutes answered by Jo Sebastian. Keep on reading to learn more!

Can You Live Without Rice?

Can You Live Without Rice?

You can live without rice - if you want to. Because rice is such a big part of Filipino life, it is more than just food - it is tradition, culture, and connection. If you are opting to remove rice, remember to make sure you are still getting enough carbohydrates in your diet. The brain needs a minimum of 120g a day!

What Do Rice Substitutes Have That Rice Doesn't?

What Do Rice Substitutes Have That Rice Doesn't?

Depending on the substitute you choose it could have more protein, more fat, or more different types of vitamins and minerals. In the different types of rice alone you can get different nutrients. 


Brown rice has more fiber than white rice, but white rice has more iron. Black and red rice have more antioxidants than the other rice options. Overall, the best thing to consider is your enjoyment and how it fits into your budget!

WIll Rice Substitutes Help With Weight Loss?

WIll Rice Substitutes Help With Weight Loss?

Yes and no. Weight loss is less about one specific food item and more about your overall intake over time. Yes if it decreases your overall intake, but no if you consume more or the same in caloric value throughout the day.

More Tips From Jo Sebastian

More Tips From Jo Sebastian

Rice is not evil! And if you enjoy it, then you don’t necessarily have to remove it. Adding some of the rice substitutes can add variety to your dishes and meals! But you can also add more protein, vegetables, and fiber to your meals and still enjoy your rice.

You Can Always Be Healthier! Add Variety to Your Diet

You Can Always Be Healthier! Add Variety to Your Diet

The road to a healthier you is just starting. Here are some products that might help you with your journey. 

Summary

As people are becoming more conscious of what they eat, either for heath or dietary reasons, these rice substitutes will surely help you. Watching what you eat does not have to be such a hassle – there are many available options to help make your diet easier on the palate. Take a gander at these options and make the right choice!


Author: J. Cuizon


Like and follow our Instagram and Facebook page for updates! 

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