5 Easy Ways to Eat More Whole Grains

Dried Rice and BeansWhat are whole grains and what’s all the hubbub anyway? The “whole grain” is the seed or kernel of a plant in its complete form. Grains have three parts, the endosperm which contains starch and protein, the bran – rich in fiber, minerals, and phytonutrients, and the germ – full of B vitamins, vitamin E and other antioxidants and minerals. “White” or refined grains like white flours and white rice are stripped of their most nutritious parts when they take away the bran and sometimes the germ.

How can you get more whole grains into your diet? It’s easier than ever before even if you don’t cook. It’s all about choice – and there are so many new, deliciously healthy whole grain products out there. So start swapping out the white stuff and get a whole lot healthier with whole grains!

1. Breakfast

Most people enjoy bread or grains as part of their breakfast routine. So just opt for whole grain choices like:

  • Oatmeal
  • Whole grain cold cereals, some of my favorites come from Nature’s Path.
  • Whole grain bagels, English muffins, and waffles
  • Whole grain pancakes, including buckwheat, whole wheat, and whole grain with buttermilk
  • Granola and breakfast bars mixed with whole grains

2. Lunch

Sandwiches are a lunch-time staple! It’s easy, have it on whole wheat next time. There are so many whole grain breads to choose from. If you are watching your carb intake, try whole wheat pita or low-carb whole grain pre-sliced breads. Going out for Japanese? Order the soba or udon noodles that are made from 100% buckwheat.

3. Dinner

I’m a huge pasta fan, but I try to make it whole grain whenever possible. My two favorite brands are Barilla Plus and Farro Pasta by Rustichella d’Abruzzo because they are as soft and tender as white pasta. Skip the take-out pizza and make your own with a store-bought whole wheat pizza shell that you can store in your freezer. Love your sweets? Bake your favorite cakes, cookies, and brownies with whole grain flours, like wheat and oat flour. Try my zucchini brownies with oat flour.

4. Snacktime

Get the munchies at work? Whole grains fill you up since they are high in fiber so reach for a bag of whole grain crackers, home-made popcorn, or whole wheat pretzels to curb your crave.

5. Eating out

Can’t help getting Chinese take-out tonight? Opt for steamed brown rice that’s chewy, satisfying, and full of fiber. Can’t avoid the breadbasket? Reach for the whole wheat roll. Having an upscale dining experience? Ask your waiter – I bet they have some whole grain choices on the menu like farro, quinoa, or black rice.

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  1. In regard to breakfast… Bob’s Red Mill makes some great 100% whole grain pancake mix that isn’t too heavy. Also, the King Arthur Flour Whole Grain Baking Book has lots of great recipes for incorporating whole grains into your baking repertoire. Just some ideas for your readers!

    I got sick this last weekend, but I still plan on making your zucchini brownies soon. I even bought oat groats to mill my own oat flour. (I have a Nutrimill and love it. If people are really serious about whole grains, there really is nothing quite like freshly milled flour!)

  2. Yes- excellent recommendations Jill, many thanks. I love King Arthur flour and Bob’s Red Mill. There really are so many high quality, whole wheat produces to choose from.

    Hope you feel better and let me know how the brownies turn out!

  3. Refining whole grains remove some vitamins & minerals,so it’s always better to take whole grain.But this article informing us on how to take more & more whole grain is good one.Thanks.
    Oat Roller

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