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Best Bread Substitute For Sandwiches

9 low carb, paleo and keto bread ideas

On today’s episode of Live Lean TV, I’m sharing 9 low carb, paleo, and keto bread ideas, including the best bread substitute for sandwiches.

This is another post from our #TBT Q&A series.

These are questions from our #LLTV Q&A series, that we filmed for our Live Lean TV YouTube channel back in 2012.

So first, I’m going to share my answer to this question from 2012.

Then I’ll answer the same question again today, with more specific bread substitutes for sandwiches.

Here is today’s viewer question:

Today’s question is from MileyCruz125 on YouTube: Can you make some bread substitute suggestions? For example, I’ve been using plain rice cakes instead of bread to make an open faced turkey avocado sandwich. What would be a good bread substitute for an English muffin egg sandwich?

Great question.

I mentioned in my Food Wars episode on bread, that if you’re going to eat bread, go with the sprouted grain bread.

Sprouted Whole Grain Bread vs Regular Whole Wheat Bread

Most brands of sprouted grain bread use better quality, natural ingredients, rather than artificial ingredients.

You can also make your own bread.

I recently made my own gluten free paleo biscuits on a recent episode of Brad’s Cookbook.

It was coconut based, so it tasted good, it only had 5 ingredients, and it was so easy to make.

So again, another option is to make your own bread.

Now here’s my answer 7 years later

If your goal is to improve your overall health, and reduce calories and carbohydrate consumption, lettuce wraps are the best bread substitute for sandwiches.

Best Bread substitute for sandwiches

Lettuce leaves are a great bread substitute for sandwiches because they are:

  • great wraps to hold the food in place
  • crunchy
  • filled with nutrients
  • won’t affect your blood sugar or fat storing insulin levels
  • low calorie and filled with fiber
  • considered a free food so you can eat as much as you want
The Truth about Your Bread

By swapping out bread for lettuce wraps, you’ll also eliminate gluten and grains, while increasing your vegetable consumption.

Plus, there are many different lettuce wrap options for you to experiment with.

Best lettuce wrap substitute for sandwiches:


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A few of my favorite lettuce wraps are:

  • Iceberg lettuce
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Butter lettuce (bibb and boston)
  • Collard greens
  • Cabbage

In the viewer question, they mentioned they swapped out 2 slices of bread for one rice cake, to make an opened face turkey avocado sandwich.

So first off, great job on making your sandwich open faced.

As you’ll see, eating an open faced sandwich, is a simple hack to cut your bread consumption in half.

Now, with that said, let’s compare this bread vs rice cake food swap from a nutrition standpoint.

Nutrition information: 2 slices of white bread

  • Calories: 144
  • Protein: 5g
  • Carbohydrates: 28g
  • Fat: 2g

Nutrition information: 1 rice cake

  • Calories: 35
  • Protein: 1g
  • Carbohydrates: 7g
  • Fat: 0g

By swapping out 2 slices of bread for 1 rice cake, you save 109 calories and 21g of carbohydrates.

That’s a calorie and carbohydrate reduction of 75%.

So from a calorie and carbohydrate perspective, it’s a great swap.

However, let’s see how a rice cake compares to a lettuce wrap?

Nutrition information: lettuce wrap

  • Calories: 1
  • Protein: 0.1g
  • Carbohydrates: 0.2g
  • Fat: 0g

When compared to lettuce, rice cakes are not only higher calorie and higher carbohydrate, they also have a greater effect on your blood sugar and insulin levels.

Turn Your Body Into A Fat Burning Machine For Life [Improve Insulin Sensitivity]

This means they may actually make you feel hungrier throughout the day.

Plus, lettuce wraps are essentially a free food, since they only contain 1 calorie per wrap.

So eat as many as you like.

Now let’s answer your other question.

What is a good bread substitute for english muffins?

If you’re looking to eliminate grains and gluten, the best english muffins will be made with:

  • Almond flour
  • Coconut flour

But if you’re looking for an english muffin healthy swap, try this gluten free paleo biscuits recipe that I posted on our @LiveLeanTV Instagram page.

Other grain free bread substitutes:

If you’re not necessarily looking to cut calories, but just want a healthier bread substitute for your sandwich, you could also try:

  • Egg wraps
  • Thinly sliced chicken breast
  • Sweet potato
  • Portobello mushroom

All these step-by-step cooking recipe videos can be found on our members platform.

Bottom line: you can still eat bread if…

You love bread, you are already lean, and you don’t have gluten intolerances.

5 sneaky sources of gluten

Then you can still enjoy bread in moderation.

If you don’t want to make your own homemade bread, I recommend you stick to healthier bread options such as:

  • Almond flour based bread
  • Coconut flour based bread
  • Cauliflower based bread
  • 100% sprouted grain bread
  • Stone ground 100% whole grain sourdough bread
  • Stone milled 100% whole grain sourdough bread

Most 100% sprouted grain bread brands are made with natural ingredients, no sugar, and are a complete protein.

You can usually find healthier bread options in the freezer aisle at the grocery store.

This is because these healthier bread options do not contain preservatives or chemicals.

Therefore, most healthier bread options need to stay cold or frozen to keep.


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Questions For You:

  • What is your favorite type of bread and favorite bread substitute?

Be sure to share your answers in the comment section below.

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