No onions, no garlic, not too much salt, not too much sugar, not too much fat… The FODMAP diet may seem very restrictive and a very blank taste diet to you. However, following this diet does not mean that you should no longer enjoy eating !
Here are some tips to spice up your dishes:
#1 Use spices!
Ginger, turmeric, cumin, coriander, cardamom… all these spices are low in FODMAP. Curcumin, the anti-inflammatory active ingredient found in turmeric, is not very bioavailable, that is to say it is poorly absorbed by the body. Pepper is known to increase its absorption but it is not recommended because pepper irritates the intestines. Instead, combine turmeric with fenugreek. Fenugreek contains a easy-digeste fiber that increase the curcumin absorption (1).
Chili should be used in moderation and according to your tolerance, as very spicy foods may induce symptoms.
Avoid ready-made spice mixes as they often contain traces of onions or garlic.
#2 Aromatic herbs are your best friend!
Chives, basil, parsley, thyme, oregano, coriander… to keep their flavor, sprinkle them over your dish in your plate. Parsley is rich in vitamin C and increases iron absorption. A good thing thing to know if your iron level is often too low.
#3 Don’t throw away any type of onions!
The green part of spring onions remains low in FODMAPs. Wild garlic is also low-FODMAPs and can also be a good alternative.
#4 A strange powder: asafetida
This odd-named powder will delight onion lovers. It taste similar and is poor in FODMAPs. A little hard to find, I personally buy it from Indian food stores. You will find it under the name of “hing”.
Don’t be afraid by the strong and no-very-good-smell of this powder, it will be much better once cooked! Store it in an airtight container.
#5 Citrus fruit are great!
Lime or yellow juice stay low in FODMAP up to 300g for lime and 187g for lemon. In other word, don”t worry too much this the quantities! Just like parsley, lemon increases iron absorption which is great for vegetarians, or if you iron level is often too low.
Orange is low in FODMAPs and its juice can be used in salad dressing.
#6 Add a crispy topping
Since gentle cooking is best when you have digestive problems, your plates may have a lack of texture. To give your dishes a crunch, sprinkle them with peanuts, poppy or macadamia nuts which are low in FODMAPs. You absolutly can use other seeds if you respect the portions. Remember to soak them first.
#7 For the sour taste
Balsamic vinegar remains low in FODMAPs up to 42g. Beyond that it becomes moderate in fructose. You can also go for apple cider vinegar which is low in FODMAPs. Apple cider vinegar helps to digest in people with a lack of gastric acidity (often the case if you suffer from reflux).
#8 Looking for an Asian-flavored dishes?
Lemongrass, ginger and tamari sauce will make you travel without taking the plane! Unlike soy sauce, tamari sauce is gluten free. Gluten is not 100% eliminated during the FODMAP diet, but it is always better to avoid overconsumption.
#9 Feeling like drinking something?
What’s better than a latte with cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, cloves, turmeric and fenugreek ?! All combined with plant-based milk (I love the hemp & oat mix because it foams soooo well) and here is a perfect drink for rainny days.
#10 Don’t worry, garlic taste is not over!
FODMAPs are water soluble, not fat soluble . This means that they mix with water or any other watery liquid (i.e never use aquafaba, the chickpea juice), but they cannot dissolve in oil.
You can then peacefully infuse cloves of garlic or shallots in your olive oil and sprinkle your dishes with this oil. Infuse oil are far my favorite as it allow us to create so many mixes!