Eliminating FODMAPS from your diet can feel a little restrictive at times, especially when it comes to your favorite foods. A heaping plate of spaghetti is an American favorite, but can you enjoy your favorite sauce when you have irritable bowel syndrome or other digestive issues?
Is Spaghetti Sauce Low FODMAP?
Can you have that plate piled with spaghetti and your favorite marinara? The answer to this is both yes and no. If you’re following the low FODMAP diet, you don’t want to grab just any sauce off the shelf at your local grocery store. Many of them contain ingredients that irritate symptoms of IBS.
Onion and garlic are both in the red zone of high FODMAP foods to avoid, and they are both abundantly common in commercially prepared pasta sauces. It’s also common to find added sugars in the form of high-fructose corn syrup on the list of ingredients. Even in small portions, these types of sauces are a no-go when eating low FODMAP.
Tomatoes are considered acceptable in reasonable portions. The issue with pasta sauces is that they are often made using tomato paste, essentially concentrated tomatoes. Plain tomato sauce is acceptable at a ½ cup portion, but it takes a significantly less amount, about two tablespoons, to reach the FODMAP threshold with tomato paste.
It is possible to enjoy tomato-based sauces with your pasta, as long as you pay attention to two things. The first is portion size. Stick to a generous ½ cup to stay within your FODMAP limits, especially during the elimination phase.
The second is to pay very close attention to what’s in the recipe. Avoid onion or garlic, and stay away from anything that contains high fructose corn syrup. There are many great low FODMAP pasta sauce recipes if you feel inclined to make your own. We’ve also done some digging and taste-testing to come with a list of FODMAP-friendly prepared sauces.
Low FODMAP Sauce Brands
Fody Foods Marina, Arrabiata, or Tomato Basil
As the name implies, Fody Foods offers sauces free of high-FODMAP foods and safe for people with IBS. Their recipes are simple, and customer reviews speak highly of the taste. This brand is a little pricier than others, and due to a lack of local availability, you may have to purchase this brand online.
Rao’s Homemade Sensitive Marinara
Rao’s can’t be beaten for their homemade, fresh flavors. It’s available in many grocery stores, but it is a little costlier than other brands. The ingredient list is simple and tailored for people who have issues with digestive upset. The one downside of this brand is the addition of celery, which isn’t great when eating low FODMAP. If celery is a trigger for you, it’s best to avoid this brand; otherwise, it’s generally well tolerated.
FODMAPPED For You
This brand offers a couple of different varieties of FODMAP-friendly sauces. They have a Red Wine & Italian Herbs option, as well as a delicious Slow Roasted vegetable pasta topping. Their recipe is free of onion, garlic, and other high-FODMAP ingredients. This brand is more challenging to find in stores and usually has to be ordered online.
Preggo Sensitive Recipe
We love this brand because it’s readily available in stores, and the price is definitely more budget-friendly than the other options. This brand does contain a little sugar, but its flavor is excellent, especially at this price point.
Can you enjoy a steaming plate of angel hair and marinara while eating low FODMAP? Absolutely! As with any low FODMAP food, portion size is key. If you’re buying prepared sauces, pay extra close attention to the list of ingredients, and stay away from known trouble makers. Then, sit down and enjoy your favorite classic Italian dish.