Making your own low FODMAP spice mixes and marinades is easy! Get my go-to spice blends for poultry, fish, and meat, plus my favorite simple marinades…all with no onion and garlic.
Ancho-Orange Roast Chicken and Spaghetti Squash (low FODMAP recipe)
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Ancho chile powder is easily the most-used spice in my kitchen, so of course I had to include it in the Low-FODMAP Spices Series.
First let’s clear something up real quick: Ancho chile powder is made from dried and ground ancho chiles, nothing else. The same goes for chipotle chile powder or ground cayenne.
On the other hand, when you see a spice labelled “chili powder” or chili seasoning, it’s usually a blend of many ingredients like cayenne, paprika, pepper, salt, AND ground onion and garlic powders. Since you’re aiming to avoid onion and garlic in the FODMAP elimination phase, chili powders like this are a no-go.
Instead, look for those pure ground chile powders like ancho. The big spice brands like McCormick sell it, so it’s easy to find in large supermarkets these days. If you want to buy it online (along with just about any spice), check out The Spice House.
Catch up on other recipes in the Low-FODMAP Spices Series:
What does ancho chile powder taste like and how do you use it?
Ancho chile powder is mild, so if you don’t like a lot of heat in your food this is the one for you. The flavor is slightly sweet and smoky. When you open a jar of fresh ancho chile powder, you’ll notice the scent of dried fruit.
You can use ancho chile powder in Mexican dishes - It’s great paired with cumin, paprika, or coriander. It’s also great as an all-purpose flavor booster for just about any protein.
But I especially like using it in unexpected ways, like in an Italian meat sauce. It won’t make your bolognese taste like Mexican; instead it adds an extra dimension of flavor with its sweet smokiness.
More Ways To Use Ancho Chile Powder:
- Use it alone to season pork, chicken, salmon or shrimp
- Make it the main ingredient in a rub for roasted or smoked pork (I like to include cumin, thyme, coriander, coffee, and brown sugar)
- Pair it with cumin to season ground meat for tacos or any Latin dish
- Use it to add flavor and depth to Italian meat sauces, meatballs, or any tomato-based sauce
- Use it to season roasted winter acorn squash - the sweetness of the squash is a great match for ancho chile
- Sprinkle it on potatoes when you make baked french fries to add flavor and color
- Pair it with paprika to season grilled chicken
Ancho-Orange Roast Chicken and Spaghetti Squash (low FODMAP)
While the chicken rests, you can use those pan juices! Transfer them to a fat separator or a bowl and remove as much fat as possible - you now have homemade broth. Use the juices as a sauce for the roast chicken or later in another dish. If you have time, allow the chicken to come to room temperature for 30 to 45 minutes before cooking - this reduces the roasting time.
Serves 4 (spaghetti squash yields 38-42 oz. cooked)
1 tbsp ancho chile powder
1 tsp dried thyme
1 navel orange, zested
5 to 6 lb chicken
Cooking spray or oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 ¼ to 2 ½ lb spaghetti squash
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 oz goat cheese, crumbled
Lime wedges for serving
Chopped fresh cilantro for garnish
1. Preheat oven to 425F and arrange oven racks in upper and lower thirds of the oven. In a small bowl, combine ancho chile powder, thyme and the orange zest. Rinse chicken and remove giblets and any excess fat; pat dry with paper towel. Place chicken on a rack inside a large roasting pan. Coat with cooking spray or oil and season generously with salt and pepper, inside and out.
2. Gently lift the skin covering the breasts near the cavity end of the chicken and push a generous amount of the ancho mixture under the skin, seasoning the breast meat. Rub remaining ancho mixture all over the top and sides of the chicken. Place half the orange inside the cavity, and tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken. Add a thin layer of water (about ¼-inch) to the roasting pan and place on the lower rack of the oven.
3. Roast for 1 hour 30 minutes to 2 hours (see note). After about 1 hour, cover the top of the chicken loosely with large piece of foil to prevent over browning. Chicken is done when internal temp reaches 165F on an instant read thermometer, testing chicken in the center of the breast and thickest part of the thigh, not touching the bone. Rest 10 minutes.
4. As soon as you get the chicken in the oven, prep the spaghetti squash: Trim the stem end, then cut in half lengthwise. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil (optional, but minimizes cleanup) and mist with cooking spray or oil and place squash on baking sheet cut-side-down. Roast in upper third of the oven until flesh is very tender when pierced with a fork, 40 to 45 minutes.
5. Transfer squash to a cutting board, cut-side-up to cool. When cool enough to handle, scoop out the layer of seeds and slimy bits of squash. Then with a fork, lightly scrape the squash out of the skin in spaghetti-like strands and transfer to a medium bowl. Add extra virgin olive oil, season with salt and pepper and stir gently to combine. Transfer to serving platter and sprinkle with goat cheese. Serve with chicken and lime wedges, and garnish the whole thing with fresh cilantro.
Easy Coconut-Shrimp Curry with Chickpeas (low FODMAP, dairy free)
This low-FODMAP curry has a satisfying creamy texture thanks to coconut milk. But it’s also packed with flavor from a few carefully chosen spices.
If you think high-FODMAP ingredients like garlic, onion, or store-bought broth are necessary for a tasty curry, you’re going to like this recipe.
This post is part of the Low-FODMAP Spices Series, and I chose to highlight coriander with an easy weeknight curry.
Check out the other posts in the Low-FODMAP Spices Series:
What does coriander taste like and how do you use it?
You’ve likely tasted coriander, but you may not know it - It’s frequently paired and blended with other spices, but sometimes I like making it the star of the show.
It’s a common mate for cumin and chile powder in Mexican cooking. It also makes frequent appearances in Indian recipes, as well as their signature spice blends like garam masala and curry seasoning.
Coriander has a warm, earthy, slightly citrusy flavor with a sour edge in the background (It comes from the same plant as fresh cilantro leaves, but they taste completely different.). Some people taste lemon, but I get a hint of orange, and I love pairing coriander and orange zest.
It’s fun to select your own curry spices rather than buying the standard yellow “curry powder,” because you can highlight your favorite flavors. And you don’t need to fuss with 10 different spices (exhausting!).
Along with the mellow, earthy coriander, I used cumin for smokiness and depth plus turmeric for that bright yellow color and tangy flavor. As with all spices, make sure they’re fresh so you get the full flavor.
Here a few more ways you can use coriander:
- Pair with thyme and orange zest as a rub for roast turkey, chicken or pork
- Pair with cumin and ancho chile powder, and use Mexican dishes
- Season vegetables for roasting - Try potatoes, acorn squash, spaghetti squash, carrots, eggplant, or rutabaga
- Try it in creamy parsnip-potato or carrot soup
- Spice up rice pilaf
The trio of spices in this curry is definitely a major flavor factor, but cooking technique also makes a HUGE difference.
Here’s how I built flavor during the cooking process:
- I sauteed the leek until lightly browned to bring out its sweetness, then added the jalapeno, ginger and some of the spices just until combined. I took this mixture OUT of the pan and added it back at the very end so the flavors stayed fresh and bold.
- I seasoned at every stage of the cooking process.
- I sauteed the potatoes, carrots, tomatoes, and spices BEFORE adding any liquid so the spices would have a chance to toast and the vegetables would develop more flavor. The picture below is exactly what that looks like - YUM right?
You can use these techniques in all sorts of recipes!
Easy Coconut-Shrimp Curry with Chickpeas (low FODMAP, dairy free)
You can omit the shrimp and add an extra potato to make this dish vegan, or substitute chicken for the shrimp. To prep the leek, cut off the white part and discard the tough outer layers. Here’s the best leek washing technique. In a pinch, you can sub scallion tops for the leek, but cook them for 30 seconds at most.
2 tbsp oil or ghee, divided
1 leek top (green part only), chopped (see note)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 jalapeno, chopped (optional, see note)
1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 tbsp ground coriander, divided
2 tsp ground cumin, divided
1 medium Russet potato (about 8 oz), peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks (about 2 cups)
2 medium carrots, sliced (about 1 cup)
1 large tomato (about 8 oz), chopped (about 1 cup)
1 1/2 tsp turmeric
1 1/2 cups water
1 (13.5 oz) can coconut milk, regular or light
1 slightly heaping cup canned and rinsed chickpeas (168 g)
3/4 pound medium shrimp
Chopped fresh cilantro for serving
1. Heat 1 tbsp of the oil in a large sauce pan or Dutch oven on medium heat. Add leek, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add jalapeno, ginger, and ½ tsp EACH of the coriander and cumin. Cook until jalapeno softens, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside.
2. Add remaining oil to pan and raise heat to medium high. Add potato and carrots, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until carrots softens slightly, about 5 minutes. Add tomato, remaining coriander, remaining cumin, and turmeric; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until tomato breaks down and becomes saucy, 5 to 6 minutes.
3. Add water. Raise heat to high and bring to a boil. Add coconut milk and bring to a boil. Add chickpeas. Reduce heat to medium/medium-high and cook, uncovered, at a steady simmer until potatoes and carrots are tender, about 10 minutes.
4. Add shrimp and simmer, stirring occasionally, until opaque in the thickest part, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in reserved leek mixture and remove from heat. Stir in juice of half a lime. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper if desired. Serve over Perfect Basmati Rice (recipe below) and garnish with cilantro.
Perfect Basmati Rice
You can use brown basmati if you prefer; follow cooking instructions on the package.
Serves 4 to 6
1 tbsp unsalted butter
1 cup white basmati rice
2 cups water
½ tsp salt
In a medium saucepan, melt butter on medium heat. Add rice and cook, stirring frequently, until grains become partially opaque, about 2 minutes. Add water and salt. Raise heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to lowest setting, cover, and cook for 17 minutes. With cover still in place, rest 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork and serve.
Maple-Soy Chicken Drumsticks with 5-Spice (Low-FODMAP, dairy free)
The easy sauce for these chicken drumsticks has just THREE ingredients, but a huge flavor payoff. If you’re bored with the same old chicken dishes, this will wake up your taste buds!
The key ingredient here is Chinese 5-Spice.
Like the name suggests, it’s a blend of 5 spices: typically fennel, cinnamon, star anise, Szechuan pepper, and cloves. But this combination isn’t set in stone - sometimes ginger, cardamom, anise (different from fennel and star anise) nutmeg, or orange peel are substituted or added to the mix.
Overall, 5-spice comes off as sweet with slightly bitter undertones and a zip of licorice from the fennel. With so much going on, a little bit goes a long way.
You can find Chinese 5-Spice in most supermarkets or online. Naturally, it’s great in Asian stir frys, braised dishes, and soups. It’s a perfect match for pork, lamb, and duck, as well as dark meat chicken and turkey. But there are plenty of unexpected ways to use it...
How To Use Chinese 5-Spice:
To flavor roasted nuts (toss with butter and 5-spice)
For glazed carrots (like these)
On stir fried green beans
In Vietnamese pho
Add to muffins or quick bread
Spice up oatmeal, sweet grits, or other hot cereal
Add to spice cookies or Chinese almond cookies
In sauce for stir fried rice noodles
Add to ground lamb and rice stir fry
In lamb or beef stew
Season roast or braised duck
On roasted vegetables like parsnips, squash, rutabaga, and celery root
This post is part of a series on low-FODMAP spices. Check out the other posts below:
Maple-Soy Chicken Drumsticks with 5-Spice (Low-FODMAP, dairy free)
You can change up this recipe by using chicken wings or thighs; adjust baking time accordingly. Finishing the chicken under the broiler crisps the skin and helps thicken the sauce. If you prefer, you can remove the skin before baking; bake until temp reaches 165F, do not broil.
3 lbs chicken drumsticks (about 12)
½ cup pure maple syrup
2 tbsp soy sauce or tamari
1 tsp Chinese 5-Spice
Sesame seeds for garnish
Chopped scallion tops for garnish
1. Preheat oven to 375F. Place chicken in a 9 x 13-inch baking dish or similar size that fits chicken in a single layer.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the syrup, soy sauce, and Chinese 5-Spice. Pour over chicken. Bake until chicken is no longer pink in the thickest part or temperature reaches 160F on an instant-read thermometer, 35 to 40 minutes, basting chicken with maple sauce 2 to 3 times during baking.
3. Turn on broiler to high and place an oven rack in the upper third position (8 to 10 inches from broiler). Broil until chicken is lightly browned and internal temp reaches 165F, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a serving dish and pour remaining sauce over chicken. Garnish with sesame seeds and scallions and serve.
Grilled Chicken with Curry-Lime Marinade (Low-FODMAP, Dairy-Free)
Adding curry seasoning to an otherwise simple marinade gives it a whole new twist, and that’s how today’s recipe was born.
Having a few great spices and marinades up your sleeve is essential for tasty low-FODMAP cooking. Since sweet curry powder is a blend of spices typically used in Indian cooking, it packs a lot of flavor into a dish without much effort--this marinade only has 6 ingredients (plus salt)!
You can find sweet curry powder in most supermarkets, and of course online. It has little to no heat and is highly versatile.
Other ways to use sweet curry powder:
Season roast vegetables
Season grilled or baked fish
Add to dips or yogurt sauce
Spice up chicken or tuna salad
Add to rice
I served this chicken with basmati rice seasoned with cumin and allspice. I love to make sauces like this on the fly with whatever I have on hand so that’s what you see here.
I used lactose-free plain yogurt, lemon juice, parsley, chopped tomatoes, and a couple dashes of curry powder.
Want more? Check out the other posts in the Low-FODMAP Spices Series:
And one more great curry recipe: Easy Slow Cooker Indian Butter Chicken and Perfect Basmati Rice
Grilled Chicken with Curry-Lime Marinade (low-FODMAP, dairy-free)
You can substitute any other chicken pieces (boneless or bone-in), but cooking times will vary. Sweet curry powder (also called “yellow” or “mild”) is a blend of spices that typically does not include onion or garlic, but always check the ingredient list to avoid any FODMAPs.
Serves 4 to 6
1 ¼ cup (lightly packed) cilantro (leaves and thin stems), plus additional for garnish
⅔ cup chopped scallions (7 to 8)
7 tbsp lime juice (3 to 4)
7 tbsp oil (olive, grapeseed, or vegetable oil)
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
3 tsp sweet curry powder (see note above)
1/2 tsp salt
2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 8)
1. Add cilantro and scallions to the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Pulsing in 5-second bursts, process until chopped, scraping down bowl as needed. Add lime juice. With processor running, slowly pour in the oil through the feed tube.
2. Add mustard, curry powder, and salt. Process until combined, scraping down bowl as needed.
3. Place chicken thighs in a heavy duty zip top plastic bag. Add marinade and seal. Shake the bag a bit to coat chicken. Refrigerate 4 to 24 hours, turning back once or twice. When ready to grill, transfer chicken to a plate (discard marinade) and bring to room temperature.
4. Prepare a charcoal or gas grill (high for gas) and brush grate with oil. Grill chicken over direct heat, turning once or twice, until internal temperature reaches 165F on an instant-read thermometer or center is no longer pink, 7 to 9 minutes. Rest 5 minutes, garnish with cilantro, and serve.
Grilled Steak with Chimichurri Sauce (low-FODMAP recipe)
Chimichurri is a sauce from Argentina made with fresh herbs and typically served over grilled meat. Since the sauce is uncooked it’s not only a snap to make, but the perfect summer condiment.
Chimichurri should be renamed “magic sauce,” because it’s magically delicious on just about anything. I’ve used it on:
Grilled steak, pork chops, and chicken breasts
Grilled fish and shrimp
If you’ve been to an Argentinian steak house, you’ve likely had chimichurri. The classic recipe includes a good amount of raw garlic, which I never liked (before the FODMAP Diet, I would actually cook the garlic before adding it to the chimichurri).
Luckily, the sauce is just as good sans garlic. In my opinion, it’s better. If you love garlic flavor, substitute garlic infused oil for 1 to 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.
You’ll also find my recipe for roasted potatoes below, which is a typical side for an Argentinian grilled meal. The potatoes couldn’t be simpler, but I like to think I’ve perfected the method over the years to make the perfect roasted spuds. :-)
Looking for more low-FODMAP grilling recipes? Check out Lemon-Caper Fish and Veggies Grilled in Foil Packets and Caprese Salad with Grilled Eggplant!
Grilled Steak with Chimichurri Sauce
If you prefer sirloin or another cut of steak, go for it! The recipe calls for bone-in NY strip because that’s what I used, but boneless is great too. The sauce is also delicious on grilled pork, chicken, and fish. To use as a marinade, add extra olive oil and/or lime juice to thin.
Serves 4 - Makes about ¾ cup sauce, double recipe if needed (1 serving = 3 tbsp)
1 cup (packed) parsley (leaves and thin stems)
1/4 to 1/3 cup mint leaves (about 4 sprigs)
1 tbsp red wine vinegar, plus additional if needed
1 lime, juiced
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional if needed
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp granulated sugar (or your sugar of choice)
1/2 tsp red chile flakes, or to taste (optional)
Sea salt to taste (1/4 to 1/2 tsp)
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 lbs bone-in New York strip (see note above)
1. Add parsley and mint to a food processor and blitz until finely chopped, scraping down bowl as needed. Add vinegar and lime juice. With processor running, slowly pour olive oil through the feed tube.
2. Add mustard, sugar and chile flakes if using. Season with salt and pepper. Pulse until blended. Consistency should be thick but pourable. Add additional oil or red wine vinegar to thin, depending on whether you like more or less acidity. Check seasoning. Can be used as a marinade, or served over grilled meat or fish. May be stored in the refrigerator up to 2 days. Serve at room temp.
3. Prepare a charcoal or gas grill (high for gas) and brush grate with oil. Season steaks with salt and pepper. Grill steaks over direct heat, turning once or twice, until done to your liking, 10 to 12 minutes for medium rare (130F to 135F). Rest at least 5 minutes. Slice and serve family style drizzled with chimichurri sauce.
2 lbs yellow potatoes, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 to 2 tbsp olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 400F. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with foil (optional, to minimize clean up) and coat with cooking spray. Add potatoes and drizzle with oil. Season with salt and pepper and toss to coat.
2. Roast until potatoes are golden brown and very tender with pierced with a fork, tossing 2 times during cooking, 35 to 45 minutes.