umami vegetables

Umami vegetables can be a satisfying meat replacement.

In elementary school we learned about the four tastes: sweet, salty, bitter and sour. But did you know there’s a fifth?

The Fifth Taste

Umami is a Japanese word meaning “pleasant and savory taste” and is responsible for the feeling of satisfaction we feel when we eat certain foods like steak. If you are a struggling vegetarian (or just someone who is struggling to get excited over eating healthier), understanding your body’s relationship with umami may be just what your taste buds need.

If you are trying to get your family to eat healthier, replace the meat part of your dish with a umami vegetable. Mushrooms are an easy go-to for meat substitute because they share the same earthy quality as meat, with none of the fat or cholesterol. Establishing certain nights of the week for ‘meatless’ dishes is a good way to build healthy eating into your schedule.

Umami vegetables include:

  • Mushrooms
  • Beets
  • Onions
  • Carrots
  • Potatoes
  • Tomatoes
  • Seaweed
  • Beans

Check out this awesome recipe that packs a triple-umami punch.

By India Stone

Image from LowSodiumGourmet.com.