A by-product in the process of making soy milk and tofu, okara is a soy-based Japanese food for good health that has hogged the spotlight in the West for its ability to support diet and weight loss.
Worldwide, it has become known for its abilities to thwart cancer and cardiovascular illnesses as well as promote good bowel movement.
Nutritional Information of Okara
The highlights of the nutritional benefits of okara are its high fiber, calcium, potassium, and protein contents.
Okara contains dietary fiber that is based in cellulose, which means this form of fiber does not dissolve in water.
Because okara’s dietary fiber does not dissolve in water, it goes through the intestines and sweep off toxins along its tract.
Thus, it helps prevent constipation and even cancer of the intestines.
It also prevents the build-up of unwanted fats in the body.
About 11 grams of fiber is packed in every 100 grams of okara, twice more than what is contained in the burdock root, a root vegetable that is widely used for its abilities to relieve indigestion and a host of other ailments.
Okara is not just high in fiber, it is also low in calories, making it ideal for dieters and people who would want to either shed pounds or keep their shapes.
Because it is low in calories, okara has been widely used in making yummy and sinful foods forgiving to the health.
It is a common ingredient in burger patties, cakes, cookies, donuts, muffins, porridge, sauces, seasonings, soups, spreads, stews, and even weaning foods.
Calcium, Potassium, Carbohydrate, and Protein
Okara is also an excellent source of calcium, potassium, carbohydrate, and protein.
Each 100 grams of okara is loaded with 81 milligrams of calcium, 350 milligrams of potassium, about 14 grams of carbohydrate, and around six grams of protein.
The protein in okara is entirely plant-based, making it perfect for vegetarians.
Also, the carbohydrate in okara is soybean-based.
This carbohydrate is good for the intestines as it puts in healthy bacteria in the gut.
Other Important Nutrients
Okara also has trace amounts of essential nutrients, including Vitamin E, K, B1, and B2.
It has folic acid.
It also has zinc, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, copper, and sodium.
To add to all the nutrients listed above, okara has zero cholesterol.
Being a zero-cholesterol food, okara would be great for people watching their blood pressure, bad cholesterol levels, and total cardiovascular health.
Recipes Using Okara
Now it is time to share recipes that fold in the healthful okara.
Ingredients for Cooking Okara-Miso Soup
- carrot – ¼ cup; sliced into thin strips
- Japanese seven-spice chili powder – 1 teaspoon
- miso – 1 tablespoon
- okara – 1 cup
- onion – 1 piece; halved; chopped
- parsnips – ¼ cup; sliced into thin strips
- sesame oil – 2 tablespoons
- soy milk or water – 3 cups
Steps for Cooking Okara Miso Soup
- In a pot set over medium heat, pour in sesame oil. Allow oil to heat up.
- Sauté onions.
- Add in carrots and parsnips. Cook for about two minutes.
- Pour in soy milk or water and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer to make the vegetables a little soft.
- Add in okara.
- Place in miso and dissolve completely in soup.
- Simmer for about two more minutes.
- Sprinkle with Japanese seven-spice chili powder.
Enjoy your okara-miso soup for breakfast!
Ingredients for Cooking Okara Scramble
- chives – ¼ cup
- cooking oil – 2 tablespoons; low-fat
- cornmeal – 1 teaspoon
- garlic powder – 1 teaspoon
- mushrooms – ¼ cup
- okara – 1 cup
- onion powder – 1 teaspoon
- pepper – 1 teaspoon
- salt – 1 teaspoon
- soy milk – 1 tablespoon
- tomato – 1 medium-sized piece
- turmeric – ½ teaspoon
Steps for Cooking Okara Scramble
- In a large bowl, mix okara with corn meal, garlic powder, onion powder, soy milk and turmeric.
- In a pan set over medium heat, pour in cooking oil. Allow to heat.
- Place the okara mixture in the pan.
- Add in chives, tomatoes, and mushrooms.
- Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Fry one side before flipping over to fry the other side.
- Serve with a cup of rice or toast.
Enjoy your okara scramble!
Copyright © 2012 Kerlyn Bautista
All Rights Reserved
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Japan on the Map
Lee G on April 03, 2012:
Hello and thank you for this recipe. I've been looking for okara for a while now. I have several asian markets in my area including japanese and korean but I can't seem to find it. Can you tell me what section in the grocery it should be in?