Flaxseed is a tiny brown oblong seed that’s incredibly nutrient-dense and has several unique physical properties.
Flaxseeds are generally consumed in a ground form to keep things easy on digestion. One unique property of flaxseeds comes from their fantastic source of fiber, mainly soluble fiber, that acts like a sponge when in contact with a liquid. This super absorbent property makes flaxseed ideal for vegan baking and cooking without the use of eggs. If you’ve ever seen “flaxseed egg” in a recipe, this is what it is referring to!
Health Benefits of Flaxseeds:
Flaxseeds have recently gained popularity for their healthy fat and fiber content. Because of this nutrient content they’ve been shown to benefit the cardiovascular system, lower cholesterol, as well as provide anti-inflammatory benefits and digestive health.
Flaxseeds may also benefit women dealing with menopause. Certain compounds within flaxseeds have been shown to promote estrogen production and reduce hot flashes when taken on a regular basis.
Nutrient Breakdown of Flaxseeds:
*Per 1 tbsp
- Protein | 1g
- Fiber | 2g
- Carbohydrates | 2g
- Healthy fats | 3g (The fat source found in flaxseed is mainly from ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), a type of omega-3 fatty acid.)
- Thiamin | 8% DV
- B6 | 2% DV
- Folate | 2% DV
- Calcium | 2% Dv
- Iron | 2% DV
- Magnesium | 7% DV
- Phosphorus | 4% DV
- Potassium | 2% DV
- Zinc | 2% DV
- Copper | 4% DV
- Manganese | 9% DV
- Selenium | 3% DV
- Phytonutrients | lignans, which are fiber polyphenols that have antioxidant benefits and act as natural phytoestrogens in the diet.
How To Use:
Flaxseed is generally found ground or in the form of meal. Both variations use the whole seed.
When using flaxseed as an egg replacement, it’s best to use flaxseed meal. When using flaxseed in muffin, bread or granola recipes for added nutrition or texture, ground flaxseed works great. Flaxseeds can also be incorporated into yogurts, cereals, desserts, snacks, casseroles, soups, stews, salads, and skillet meals!
Store ground flaxseed in the freezer to keep fresh. Due to the presence of sensitive omega 3 fatty acids, flaxseeds are particularly at risk from rancidity in warm temperatures.
When using flaxseed as an egg replacement, use the following ratio: 1 egg = 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed + 3 tablespoons of water. Soak for at least 5 minutes or until “gelled”.