The Guide to Not Eating Nightshades: No Nightshades Cheat Sheet

As a chef, I hear about all the dislikes, allergies, and preferences. This one seems to be a growing problem for people- nightshades. 

Nightshades are a group of vegetables that cause someone to feel itchy, not well in the stomach and other uncomfortable things. The main culprits are: white potatoes, peppers, tomatoes, and eggplant. 

I'm not gonna go into the science, but I know a lot of my students and clients need to avoid it. 

So, what are some substitutions?

Use Sweet Potatoes or Squash for White Potatoes: Embrace the orange! However, a lot of people don't like the sweetness that sweet potatoes or squash might bring to the meal. So, in that case, choose corn instead. Corn on the cob or corn tortillas are great. 

Radishes of Black Pepper for Peppers, Cayenne, or Paprika: Use baby radishes or daikon for that spicy flavor in salads, stir fries or soups. They sub readily in fajitas, a plate heavy on peppers. 

Beets, Plums, Peaches, Pineapple, or Mango for Tomatoes: To make bright and citrusy sauces or salsas, add lemon juice or lime juice to these fruits to balance out the sweetness with a little acidity. Also, add cilantro, parsley, or basil to make it more savory. If you're looking to make a tomato sauce, use beets and white beans to make a great ragout.

Cauliflower, Zucchini, or Okra for Eggplant: Like eggplant- cauliflower and zucchini have a pretty neutral taste, so they can be added to any dish easily. I like breading cauliflower or zucchini like I do for eggplant parmesan with a little breadcrumbs and parmesan.  Okra is good too, though it has a slimy texture some people don't like. 

So there it is! The cheat sheet for Nightshade Substitutes. I hope it helped you out. Comment below if you have any more ideas or tips that might be useful!

If you want No-Nightshade Recipes, see the recipes below!