When you start to eat healthier, you usually end up switching some foods out for better substitutes: brown rice for white rice, butter for margarine, whole wheat for all purpose flour.
One ingredient you might not think of replacing is cornstarch. Granted I doubt you use cornstarch all that often, it’s not like it’s an essential ingredient. Cornstarch is really just used for thickening soups or gravies most of the time.
However, just because you rarely use an item doesn’t mean you shouldn’t buy the best version of it.
There are a few reasons I no longer buy cornstarch. Some might not seem like a big deal to you, some might not even apply to you but here they are nonetheless.
Reasons to Ditch the Cornstarch
Most corn in the USA is genetically modified. As in it’s a GMO. I will not be the US’s guinea pig for GMO testing. No thank you.
Some cornstarch companies have added ingredients, which may make cornstarch unacceptable with gluten issues.
Those allergic to corn obviously can’t handle cornstarch. Corn allergies aren’t as common as say peanuts but it’s beginning to increase.
Cornstarch is highly processed and not nutritious.
What do I use instead of cornstarch? I now use arrowroot
. Arrowroot powder or sometimes called arrowroot starch or even arrowroot flour is made from the root stock of a tropical American plant.
Benefits of Arrowroot
Gluten free with no gluten contaminants.
Only starch product with calcium ash, which is important for proper acid/alkali balance.
Arrowroot is nutritious. It contains more calcium, fiber, folate, and potassium then cornstarch with less sodium and carbs. Now granted, you only use a small amount of either of these ingredients but regardless, more nutrition is still more nutrition. For a side by side comparison check out this site
Arrowroot works better then cornstarch for frozen foods and acidic foods.
The most neutral tasting of starch thickeners.
When you buy arrowroot it is simply the plant ground up. As far as I know, it is not processed.
Arrowroot can be used just like cornstarch. Simply mix a bit of arrowroot with a little bit of cold water and add to whatever you are making. Use the same amount of arrowroot as you would cornstarch. I have also heard that you can use arrowroot to replace flour when you need a gluten free substitute but I have yet to try it out.
Arrowroot is also good for personal products such as homemade deodorant.
When buying arrowroot do not buy it in the spice section of your grocery store. If you do you will pay $5.00 for an itty bitty jar of it. Instead go to your local natural store or buy online through somewhere like amazon
. At any of those places, you can buy about 1 pound of arrowroot for $9.00. Hmmm $5.00 for 4 oz or $9 for a whole pound?
The next time you run out of cornstarch, think about buying arrowroot instead. It might seem like a little thing but it’s one less GMO, one less processed item.
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