Konnyaku or other low-glycemic pasta NYC

Now that I’m cooking again and making things more ambitious than scrambled eggs with a few types of vegetables, I’m thinking more of the home-cooked foods I loved while growing up. One of those was pasta with tomato sauce. However, in addition to going off salt, I also need to lose wait and should limit carb intake. I’m interested in trying to work with konnyaku pasta. Have you had any experience with it, and do you know where in Manhattan I could get some?

I would assume Sunrise would have it (they carry Shirataki which is similar.)

I’ve never heard of this pasta. But via a quick Googling around, you should be able to find it in Asian markets and possibly health food stores.

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Thanks, martini. I’ll have a look there first, then check M2M and similar stores which serve at least a partly Japanese clientele. RGR, I also appreciate the suggestion of health food stores, if my initial attempts fail.

Konnyaku is made from the root of a plant called Devils Tongue. It is very gelatinous. You can buy it in a cake, or if it’s shredded in noodle form it’s called either ita konnyaku or shirataki. You can get it in Japanese grocery stores.

There’s another thing called tofu shirataki but that’s totally different.

I like konnyaku but I don’t think it’s a very good Italian pasta substitute. I think tofu shirataki is better for that. Ita konnyaku is better in a stir fry or sukiyaki.

When you cook with it, make sure to boil it for a few minutes before using.

What kind of tofu does tofu shirataki taste most similar to (for example, soft tofu, harder tofu, yuba)?

I’ve seen it at Katagiri on 59th Street. A fun store to visit in any case.

I’ve purchased shirataki noodles in Shop-Rite Supermarkets in Brooklyn & in NJ. I use it in this recipe.

I think tofu shirataki tastes different from soft tofu or hard tofu because the texture is different. It’s definitely nothing like soft tofu. The texture is noodle-like and, like tofu, doesn’t retain much taste and can instead take on other flavors (e.g. sauce)

Thanks. Seems worth trying.

One last note on the shirataki - don’t expect al dente.

One of the best pastas if you’re on a healthy diet is the sweet potato noodles the Koreans use
in Japchae. I make that dish very often, and it’s good. Just Google or go to Pinterest for a recipe. It’s very
simple and tastes great.

I don’t think sweet potato noodles are low-carb.

Bummer. But that’s the way it is. For changes in diet, some compromises have to be made.

If you Google about sweet potato noodles, you’ll find that they have a much lower
glycemic index than wheat or other noodles, that’s why dieticians advise people
to use them. There are countless links to articles stating this, but I’m not going to
list them here. Heck, it’s New Year’s!

Sweet potatoes in general have a low glycemic index but it varies widely on the way it is prepared. For example a baked sweet potato has a higher glycemic index than a boiled one.

When it’s in noodle form as dangmyeon using the starch, it looks like the glycemic index is about the same as regular pasta.


Interesting article…thanks. I know more than I did before.

I eat a lot of shirataki noodles. Make sure to rinse well and they are best “dry fried” or tossed in to soups. Another option you might look in to that some prefer is kelp noodles as well as zucchini noodles

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I like kelp noodles but–they are very high in sodium which Pan is trying to avoid.

The brand I buy (Sea Tangle) is 1% sodium so not high in sodium at all

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