Last week I challenged y’all to guess the secret high-protein ingredient in a new muffin recipe we tried out in the studio.
Most of you guessed almond flour.
While almond flour’s a GREAT source of protein (~6g per ounce), a great source of vitamins and minerals, and is relatively low carb (~5.6g per ounce), most of you were wrong.
Instead, I used cricket protein! 🦗💪
Cricket flour is an excellent choice for anyone who wants to bake using flour that’s high in protein, low in carbs, and incredibly sustainable.
That is, of course, as long as you can get over the idea that you’re eating… you know, bugs.
CRICKETS ARE HIGH IN PROTEIN
Pound for pound, crickets are protein powerhouses. Compared to beef, which is usually 17%-40% protein, a cricket’s body clocks in 65%-70% pure, complete protein. That means it contains all the same essential branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) as other animal proteins, which our bodies use to build muscle.
THEY’RE LOW IN CARBS (AND HIGH IN EVERYTHING ELSE)
Ten grams of cricket flour contains ~50 calories, ~6 grams of protein, ~2.5 grams of fat, and less than 1 gram of carbohydrates. Crickets are also hoppin’ with vitamins and minerals. These include 25% of recommended daily riboflavin, 80% recommended daily vitamin B12, 20% of your biotin, and 15% of your zinc. Therefore cricket flour/powder is a fantastic choice for anyone who follows the keto or paleo diet.
CRICKET PROTEIN IS HIGHLY SUSTAINABLE
We should all be making efforts to go green wherever we can because we only have one shot to take care of the Earth. From a health and wellness perspective, it’s essential that what we do with our diets, nutrition, and fitness doesn’t happen in a vacuum. In 2018, I caught, scaled, gutted, and filleted my very own cod while fishing in Iceland. The experience gave me a whole new appreciation for the food that we’re all blessed to eat and reminded me of my place in the greater ecosystem.
On a micro-level, health and wellness means eating well, exercising, and nurturing our mental and spiritual health. On a macro level, it involves taking a more holistic approach to our lives and understanding how we affect the environment.
Crickets, as a food source, are incredibly sustainable. In fact, some say they’re the world’s most sustainable protein. Traditional farming and farmland growth, in particular, is gobbling up land and devastating wild habitats, leading to population decline and extinction in certain species. As well, livestock farming has a huge carbon footprint. One report says livestock farming accounts for 18% of human-produced greenhouse gasses.
BUT WHAT DOES CRICKET FLOUR TASTE LIKE?
Look, people have been eating crickets (and other bugs) for centuries. And in many parts of the world, they’re a widespread ingredient. Thought you might be squeamish about the idea at first, I guarantee it’s worth pushing yourself out of your comfort zone and getting over whatever hangups you have.
The taste itself is pretty mild. In fact, I was able to completely fool Wilson when he tried my Low Carb Cricket Flour Muffins. If anything, I’d say there’s a bit of an almost malty flavor. However, in any savory dish, I can promise that the cricket flavor can be easily masked.
ADD CRICKETS TO YOUR DIET
You MIGHT have to dig around (😏) to find them, but crickets should absolutely be a part of your diet. Even if you’re just mixing cricket and almond flour in a recipe to give it a protein boost, you’re taking steps to improve your health and wellness. AND you’re taking steps to be a better steward of the planet. If you want some inspiration, I suggest starting with the low carb muffins I mentioned above. But you can also try using cricket protein in some of my other recipes:
- Easy Gluten-Free Almond Crust Pizza
- Quick Gluten-Free Protein Banana Waffles
- Gluten-Free Corn Fritters With Avocado Crema
I hope I convinced you to go out and give this protein source a try. As the global food shortage worsens year-over-year, and the environment calls for our protection, practicing sustainability in our diets while maintaining our health, wellness, and nutrition will become more and more important.
So get out there and hop to it!
Because if you say you care about the planet but don’t actually do anything about it, you’re just a hypocricket.
Want to give it a try, but not sure where to look?