We Tried It: Pasta with 20 Grams of Fiber!


By: , SparkPeople Blogger

In honor of National Noodle Day, we're bringing you a review of some noodles you might not have seen on your supermarket shelves.

Let me first reveal three personal facts about myself: I'm incredibly skeptical, I'm mildly obsessed with fiber intake, and I haven't eaten regular pasta in at least two years. It's whole wheat or nothing in my house.

So when I heard about the company Fiber Gourmet and its high-fiber, low-calorie pasta, I didn't believe it. The pasta has 130 calories per 2-ounce serving, and a whopping 20 g of fiber (in the fettuccine). That's some serious fiber!

Considering that regular pasta would have about 210 calories and just a couple of grams of fiber at best, I was perplexed. How does Fiber Gourmet boost fiber without adding calories? Surely it must some strange unpronounceable ingredients.

I decided to serve a box of the 18 grams-of-fiber-a-serving macaroni and cheese to my boyfriend. As we rarely have macaroni and cheese of any kind--and certainly not the boxed kind--he was suspicious.

"What is this?" he asked, a puzzled look on his face. I think he expected the sauce to be vegan or made from squash or something (not such an unlikely possibility for me).

"It's macaroni and cheese," I replied. "Eat it. I made it for you."

He hesitantly took a bite. Then another bite.

"This is good," he said, still suspicious. I studied his face closely, wondering whether he could discern between this pasta and regular pasta.

He kept eating--and went back for another bowl.

Then I spilled the beans: "Guess how much fiber that pasta has," I began.

He put down his fork and rolled his eyes. "I knew there was a catch."

"Eighteen grams!" I exclaimed. "That's almost a day's worth of fiber in one serving."

"Then you eat it," he said.

So I did. I ate one bite, then another, then another. I, too, devoured an entire serving of the pasta as he ate his second bowl. It was just like the blue box variety I loved as a child, but I felt better knowing I was getting a dose of fiber along with my cheesy sauce.

I must say, I'm a believer. This stuff tastes just like white pasta (which to me tastes strange because I like the nutty taste of whole wheat pasta).

The ingredient list isn't scary: Durum semolina flour, modified wheat starch, wheat gluten, niacin, iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin and folic acid. OK, just like regular pasta, plus some starch and added nutrients.

So how does Fiber Gourmet deliver 20 grams of fiber per serving? (I know what you're thinking. Won't all that fiber wreak havoc on your digestive system if you eat so much at one serving? I was fine the next day, but I eat a high-fiber diet. However, Fiber Gourmet says this kind of fiber won't hurt your stomach!)

Back to how Fiber Gourmet gets 20 grams of fiber in one serving of pasta. (Seriously, that's like drinking eight glasses of prune juice or eating a cup and a half of beans!)

According to the company's website, the pasta replaces flour with zero calorie fiber in the form of resistant starch, which though technically a starch is indigestible by the small intestines and is therefore classified as fiber.

Resistant starch is sometimes called the "third fiber" because it delivers some of the benefits of insoluble fiber (the kind that can't be digested, absorbs water and helps bulk up your stools) and some of the benefits of soluble fiber (the kind that's digestible, coats your intestines and helps reduce cholesterol absorption).

"Resistant starch has a taste and texture similar to standard starch, except that your enzymes aren’t able to break it down and digest it. This causes resistant starch to show up as a fiber under laboratory analysis, and is why the FDA classifies it as fiber. It’s the best of both worlds: it tastes like starch, but works like fiber.
"Your body is also able to tolerate resistant starch much better than other fibers. While most cellulose-based fibers produce gas and bloating, resistant starch is much more benign. If whole-grain foods hurt your stomach, you'll be surprised how painless the fiber in Fiber Gourmet products is."

Where can I get it?
For now, the pastas are mostly available online, though some retailers do carry it. (Contact the company for more information.) The prices are a bit higher than regular pasta but aren't astronomical.

The mac and cheese comes out to about $2.75 a box if you get the $16.49 six-pack; the short-cut fettuccine is about $2.49 a box if you get the 10-pack for $24.99.

Have you tried Fiber Gourmet pastas? Would you? How do you ensure you get the recommended 25-35 grams of fiber a day?

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  • 101
    I absolutely love the Fiber Gourmet rotini and spaghetti pastas. The taste is a bit more "toothsome" than semolina pasta. Add spaghetti sauce and a heaping helping of fresh saute'd vegetables and you have a very satisfying dish. I have never tried the mac and cheese though. - 9/1/2016   7:30:03 PM
  • 100
    Not for me. Sounds like a marketing gimmick. I limit myself to two cups of whole wheat angel hair pasta every two weeks.....and then I really enjoy it. I need everything in moderation. Pasta and peanut butter are my trigger foods. - 9/25/2012   11:46:31 PM
  • 99
    Think I'll stick with whole wheat pasta or beans or food I can identify. Maybe I'm too sceptical of eating something created in a lab, but read the Spark blog on spotting "fake" fiber in the diet. That's the "resistant starch". - 10/19/2010   6:30:10 AM
  • 98
    I have tried it. The texture is like regular white pasta but the cheese sauce is bland. Overall not very tasty. I've got at least 5 boxes left if anyone in the Alexandria, VA area wants to try it out.

    By eating whole grains, beans and fruit fiber intake is usually not a problem. - 9/2/2010   4:31:04 PM
  • 97
    I wouldn't eat it. I like getting my fiber from fruits, vegetables, nuts, beans, and whole grains. Mac and cheese is great comfort food but it's too processed. I don't trust processed foods that say they are very high in fiber for the most part. - 9/2/2010   3:37:41 PM
  • 96
    My kid love Mac and Cheese and want it a lot i have got to try and find this ..thanks so much - 8/16/2009   3:03:28 PM
  • 95
    Here's another food I crave when I diet - the amalgam of cheese and pasta! I am looking forward to trying this, but I will have to run it down first. I usually get my fiber from beans, mainly, and other vegetables. - 8/15/2009   11:02:17 PM
  • 94
    I can't find this pasta! I'll have to do some more digging. - 8/14/2009   4:59:51 PM
  • 93
    Just got my box delivered to my house last night. It's a pasta night tonight:) Will let you know what I thought of it. - 5/5/2009   12:54:23 PM
  • 92
    I only eat Fiber Gourmet Pasta! I found out about it from hungry-girl.com and have been eating it for a year. I buy it on line and they ship it to my home. My whole family eats it and doesn't even know it's healthy for them! Thanks for reviewing this item! - 4/28/2009   9:06:44 AM
  • 91
    Has anyone looked at their comparisson to other popular brands? WOW!
    I couldn't wait for my local store to stock it so I ordered a sampler pack. I love pasta but don't really like the taste of whole wheat one. This should do the trick.
    Thanks so much for the link. - 4/27/2009   3:25:37 PM
  • 90
    I love whole wheat and whole grain pastas. I will have to check this product out. - 3/6/2009   1:28:06 PM
    After I leave this comment, I am going on line and order both. I am a pastaholic. When my DH was alive and I made him pasta,. I always made more and ate a large bowl drowned in butter before dinner and again had my serving of pasta. I would eat leftover pasta fried the next morning. I am so happy to have this pasta, now I won't feel so guilty eating pasta. - 10/14/2008   12:08:23 PM
  • 88
    I am definitely going to order this. I am also a bit obsessed by fiber but even I would have been scared to eat this before reading your blog. Thanks for the review and info on a product I probably would not have found otherwise. - 10/10/2008   7:20:23 PM
  • 87
    Loved it. Great alternative to regular pasta. - 10/9/2008   11:46:50 PM
  • 86
    Wooo hoooo
    it is sold at a nearby retail store! I'll give it a try sometime this month. - 10/9/2008   10:58:54 PM
  • 85
    I must have it! - 10/9/2008   9:19:52 PM
  • 84
    Looooove the Fiber Gourmet -- but the mail order thing is killing me. I asked my local HFS to carry it, but no dice thus far -- do NOT -- I repeat DO NOT overcook the Spinach nested pasta -- I liked the short cut rather than the nested because it would cook up firmer (which I like). - 10/8/2008   8:42:31 PM
  • 83
    Sounds interesting! How was the cheesy sauce? - 10/8/2008   7:51:13 PM
  • 82
    I think this is a great idea, especially for those of us that don't get enough fibre. I am looking forward to trying it. - 10/8/2008   2:07:57 PM
  • 81
    Hat's off to Piglet1979 for acknowledging that it isn't normal to eat 20 g. or more in fiber at one sitting!
    I totally agree with her. It's better to spread this out throughout the day; key word: "naturally". - 10/8/2008   9:45:28 AM
  • 80
    mmmmmm.... fiber..... - 10/8/2008   7:55:39 AM
  • 79
    Wow! A third fiber...how cool is that? This'll really help me get to my fiber goal each day. Thanks to your information, I went to their site and got a sampling. I'm really looking forward to its delivery! - 10/8/2008   12:31:31 AM
  • 78
    we've been sticking to whole wheat pasta as much as possible. We actually enjoy it more.
    I'm pumped to try this pasta...hopefully it will be great! - 10/7/2008   10:59:00 PM
  • DAINS859
    This sounds like it could be likeable! I too love the Barilla Plus. I have been buying that for about 1 year now, and that's all I make. My kids don't even know the difference. I will look into the website to see if it is available in my area. Thanks for the tip. - 10/7/2008   8:39:34 PM
  • 76
    That amazing! - 10/7/2008   6:21:20 PM
  • 75
    That amazing! - 10/7/2008   6:21:10 PM
  • 74
    The comment "How about comparing foods that grow on trees? " had me chuckling, that is exactly where Cellulose does grow....Trees, not on trees, but IN trees. - 10/7/2008   6:08:09 PM
    As an Italian-American I'll always be loyal to real pasta, not that whole wheat stuff that ruins the taste of any sauce you use to adorn the noodles. Furthermore if it wasn't imported from Italy then you won't find it on my table. After all pasta is but a way to feature the sauce.

    But as far as high fibre pasta goes I like Barilla Pasta Plus. It's higher in fibre and I have no idea about calories, but I will say it's real pasta. It's Italian made and just like regular old pasta that mom used to make. It's also readily available in U.S. grocery stores. Sadly I can't get it anymore now that I don't live in the U.S.

    Here's a web link if anyone is interested: http://www.barillaus.com/Home/Pages
    - 10/7/2008   5:11:43 PM
  • 72
    I'm picturing chemists in their lab coats as they turn boring old pasta into "Fiber Gourmet." - 10/7/2008   5:02:10 PM
    Wow, can you tell me which stores they carry it in and also, if they have pasta that is not mac and cheese. My son is allergic to dairy so we are trying out all sources of diffrent foods. - 10/7/2008   4:06:55 PM
    Seeing that I'm not the only one concerned about food "technology" and Frankenfoods, I'm going to mention the best tasting whole wheat pasta I've ever tried: De Cecco. It is one of the more expensive brands in grocery stores but it is a lot cheaper than Fiber Gourmet. Whole wheat pasta are sometimes gritty or bitter but De Cecco has a wonderful flavor and texture.

    I'll reserve judgement on Fibre Gourmet until I know more about the technology they use. - 10/7/2008   3:48:43 PM
  • 69
    will definately try this, how is all that fiber for young kids I have (2) grandkids that loves mac&cheese so i may to make sure it ok for them to eat also. - 10/7/2008   1:45:09 PM
  • 68
    It's a little pricey, but possibly worth it to get some nutritious comfort food. If the ingredient used to give this product the necessary fibre was available separately, then I'd certainly use it as a healthy additive to stuff I make from scratch - we don't eat boxed foods so often. - 10/7/2008   11:33:18 AM
  • 67
    I ordered it! Will keep you posted. thanks, Pat - 10/7/2008   11:22:33 AM
    Why does sparkpeople insist on comparing foods that aren't really foods. How about comparing foods that grow on trees? - 10/7/2008   10:50:11 AM
    Thanks for the info! I probably won't try it- I try to get alot of fiber but wouldn't pay that much for Mac n cheese or any other type of noodle. I enjoyed the article tho! - 10/7/2008   9:58:11 AM
  • 64
    I would definately try it if I could find it and it wasn't so expensive. - 10/7/2008   9:57:14 AM
  • 63
    Wow this sounds too good to me, I have to have fiber as I have diverticulitis disease and fiber makes all the difference in my health. So I would love to try Fiber Gourmet - 10/7/2008   9:36:06 AM
  • 62
    Wow this sounds too good to me, I have to have fiber as I have diverticulitis disease and fiber makes all the difference in my health. So I would love to try Fiber Gourmet - 10/7/2008   9:36:05 AM
  • 61
    I too quit buying regular pasta in favor of whole grain/wheat and love it.....may have to make the investment to try some of this, it sounds great :) - 10/7/2008   8:54:36 AM
  • 60
    I love fiber gourmet pasta. I have eaten all the different flavors. I am unhappy that they cannot be found at a local health store. It is costly and then you have to payu for shipping as well. I would love to try the mac and cheese pasta as we all know how many calories the real deal has! - 10/7/2008   4:48:13 AM
  • 59
    A teaspoon of psyillium husks has 7 grams of fiber and 15 calories. I doubt this is as low calorie as it is making it out to be. - 10/7/2008   3:54:28 AM
  • 58
    Never heard of it but would like to try it. I love pasta and cheese - 10/7/2008   3:41:57 AM
  • 57
    Where did you get this? I want some.
    Babyface thanks for the info on Barilla Plus, I didn't know that was loaded with fiber too!! - 10/7/2008   12:12:52 AM
  • 56
    I buy a Whole grain mixed pasta called "Barilla Plus" with flax seed in it, and an amazing nutty taste..and 17 gr. of fiber. Its unbelievably good! I get Angelhair pasta, but the regular spaghetti is good too. ..a new product.

    Ellen - 10/6/2008   11:38:40 PM
  • 55
    Looks like a "must try" item for me. I find in trying to keep my calories lower, sometimes the fiber is sacrificed. - 10/6/2008   11:12:25 PM
  • 54
    I'll definately check to see if it's available in my area b/c I'd like to try the Mac n cheese. My only question is where this would fit in a diabetic diet -- I use the Dreamfield pasta which tastes great (like regular pasta, I don't like ww) and it's very low in carbs. Judging by the nutritional info listed above, I don't think this would work as well for diabetics as Dreamfield does. However, definately better than regular pasta. - 10/6/2008   11:10:11 PM
  • 53
    Wow is all I can say. Never thought Mac n Cheese could be good for you. - 10/6/2008   11:07:52 PM
    Wow a mac and cheese that's actually good for you. Hope it comes to supermarkets soon.
    - 10/6/2008   10:51:47 PM

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