Smart Substitutions: Wheat Germ as a Topping
Topping sweet and savory dishes with the crunch that comes with bread crumbs and nuts takes them up a notch. Unfortunately, it can also take fat and calories up with it. The solution? Try substituting some wheat germ for part or all of your toppings. You’ll still get that added texture, but usually with less fat and more nutrients than other toppings. Below we offer a few suggestions. Check out our Usage and Substitution Guide for more ways to use wheat germ as a tasty and nutritious substitute.
Mac ’n’ cheese is a family favorite, even more so when you add some crunch on top of the gooey goodness beneath. But bread crumbs mixed with butter—a common topping for this dish—adds calories and fat without much nutrition. Our mac ’n’ cheese recipe substitutes Kretschmer Wheat Germ for half the bread crumbs to give you added folic acid, vitamin E and other nutrients. Try this method with other pasta dishes that call for bread crumb toppings.
You can do the same with baked vegetable dishes such as those with broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, spinach and more. Our Crispy Cauliflower with a Twist uses no butter, but instead offers a tasty combination of olive oil, garlic, wheat germ, parmesan and raisins as a topping for this cruciferous veggie.
Finally, for a delicious appetizer that will impress guests while also swapping out all bread crumbs for wheat germ, try our Baked Clams with Wheat Germ.
Crunchy toppings and desserts go hand in hand. Next time you’re putting out a sundae bar complete with all the usual toppers, consider including Kretschmer Honey Crunch Wheat Germ as an option. It adds both a subtle sweetness and crunch and tastes great layered with nuts and chocolate sauce, while also offering a great substitute for anyone with nut allergies.
Next time you’re whipping up a baked fruit dessert, try wheat germ in the topping instead of flour. This Blueberry Crisp from WebMD mixes oats and cinnamon with wheat germ for its crunchy top.
One of the simplest ways to add wheat germ to your diet is as a sprinkled topper for your oatmeal or cereal. You can use it as a substitution for nuts, fruit or brown sugar. Just add it to the mix!
One of our readers’ favorite ways to top breakfast dishes with wheat germ is in a yogurt and granola parfait. Layer your preferred flavor of Greek or regular yogurt, granola (try our homemade version or use store bought), fruit and wheat germ. The whole family will love this morning pick-me-up!
How do you use wheat germ in your toppings? Let us know in the comments below!