Going keto? Wondering what vegetables you can eat on the ketogenic diet? Read on to learn how to enjoy keto vegetables on a low carb diet, without going over your carb limit.
What is the Keto Diet?
A well-designed keto diet is a sustainable eating plan that encourages a diet high in healthy fats with a moderate amount of protein and a low amount of carbohydrates.
Whereas the “Standard American Diet” emphasizes a grain-based diet high in carbs, the keto diet plan emphasizes healthy fats as the predominant source of calories.
How Many Carbs on the Keto Diet
For example, a typical keto diet plan suggests that healthy fats make up 65-75% of total calories, protein makes up 20-25% of total calories, and carbs make up only 5-10% of total calories.
If you are new to keto — or just looking to track your carb intake to stay below the often-recommended 20-30 grams of carbs per day — it’s helpful to know the carb count of your favorite vegetables.
Vegetables on the Keto Diet
Vegetables — especially “above ground” vegetables like leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, onions, and celery, etc. — are a healthy part of a well-rounded keto diet. Vegetables provide important nutrients, antioxidants, and fiber that contribute to a healthy lifestyle.
“Above ground” vegetables are generally lower carb. This group includes vegetables like leafy greens, and cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower.
“Below ground” vegetables usually contain more carbs per serving. This group includes root vegetables like potatoes and carrots. Limit these vegetables to eat fewer carbs.
Another helpful shortcut? In general, green vegetables tend to be lower in carbs than yellow, orange, or red veggies.
Exceptions exist to these rules of thumb — read on to find carb counts for specific vegetables.
Understanding Vegetable Serving Sizes
Carb counts are provided as net carbs per 100 grams (3½ ounces) serving of the raw vegetable. 100g is the general recommended serving size for vegetables.
Remember when looking at the carb count for these veggies:
Net carbs equal the total carbs minus fiber.
The Best Keto Vegetables
- Spinach – 1g
- Celery – 1g
- Zucchini – 2g
- Asparagus – 2g
- Mushrooms – 2g
- Cucumbers – 3g
- Cauliflower – 3g
- Cabbage – 3g
- Tomato – 3g
- Green Bell Pepper – 3g
- Eggplant – 3g
- Olives – 3g
- Broccoli – 4g
- Kale – 4g
- Green Beans – 4g
- Jicama – 4g
- Brussels Sprouts – 5g
- Bonus: Avocado – 2g (technically a fruit!)
Vegetables and Grains to Limit on the Keto Diet
Eat in Moderation
- Pumpkin – 6g
- Rutabaga – 6g
- Celeriac – 7g
- Carrots – 7g
- Onions – 8g
- Leeks – 12g
Foods to (Most Likely) Avoid
- Green Peas – 9g
- Corn – 15g
- Potatoes – 15g
- Sweet Potatoes – 17g
- Yucca – 36g
Keto Vegetable Recipes
If you like cabbage and Asian flavors, try Keto Egg Roll in a Bowl (Crack Slaw)
Keto Chicken Salad with Thai Peanut Dressing is a great keto vegetable recipe with raw cabbage, carrots, and a tasty dressing.
Or, try Low-Carb Broccoli Cheese Soup. It’s one of my favorite combos — broccoli and cheese!
Want to read more about what foods are keto? Here’s a popular article: Is Pumpkin Keto Diet Friendly?