The Facts About Coconut Aminos
Coconut aminos is a savory seasoning sauce that has become a popular substitute for soy sauce in gluten-free, paleo, and Whole30 diets. This condiment is made from aging coconut tree sap and has an umami quality with a slight sweetness.
What is Coconut Aminos?
If you’re on the Whole30 or Paleo diet, you might have noticed that coconut aminos are on the “yes” list. Coconut aminos is a sauce made from the nectar of the coconut blossom, commonly referred to as the sap. The sauce is made from tapping the unopened flowers of a coconut tree, then fermenting the resulting nectar with a little bit of salt added.
It’s dark, thick, salty and slightly sweet–you can think of it as a syrup with high umami qualities, thanks to the fermentation process breaking down the proteins into flavorful amino acids, like glutamate. I’ve found the savory notes to be less intense, but still flavorful.
Since it comes from a coconut tree, it’s soy-free and gluten-free, with a taste profile that makes it an ideal substitute for soy sauce.
Health benefits of coconut aminos
The health benefits of coconut aminos are wide-ranging. It’s ideal for those with gluten allergies or intolerances, soy allergies or intolerances or those looking to complete Whole30 or live by a Paleo diet. It also comes with a reduced risk for heart disease, diabetes, and colon cancer when compared with soy sauce, thanks to the lack of MSG, GMOs and phytoestrogen and phytic acid.
Coconut aminos is also jam-packed with 17 amino acids, potassium, vitamin C and vitamin B and scores low on the glycemic index. It’s low calorie–just five calories per teaspoon.
Cooking with coconut aminos
Cooking with coconut aminos is easy, especially when you have soy sauce in mind.
Marinade: It works well as a marinade for any meat or fish, especially tougher textures and flavors like beef, pork, and shrimp.
Sauce: Mix it with ginger, garlic, and cornstarch or arrowroot powder to make a stir-fry sauce and cook it in a wok with protein and vegetables.
Seasoning: Combine it with sushi for a different kind of dipping sauce, or use it in place of salt when cooking up soups.
Dressings: Combine it with lemon, vinegar and olive oil for salad dressings.
As you can imagine, the possibilities are endless, mainly when thinking up Asian-inspired dishes.
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