Keto Fruit That Won't Put Your Carb Count Over the Edge
The keto diet is a high-fat, moderate-protein, and very low-carb diet. You do have to cut back significantly on carbs (aka glucose, or sugar), which means a lot of foods are either eliminated or severely restricted. While that restriction alone deserves pause, (read more about why you might want to give up restrictive diets once and for all) if you're an avid follower of the keto diet, you should still find ways to keep your favorite, nutrition-rich foods on your plate. (More: Is the Keto Diet Bad for You?)
Typically, one of the first things to go is fruit, thanks to its generally high sugar count, but that certainly doesn't mean you need to cut all fruit out of your diet. There are numerousketo fruits that have a lower carb count and will make sure to keep you in ketosis. (BTW, there are specifically approved keto vegetables as well.)
To achieve ketosis, the recommended macros distribution is 70-75 percent of your daily calories from fats, 20-25 percent from protein, and 5-10 percent from carbs. For example, on a 1,800-calorie diet, that would mean you're consuming 140-150 grams of fats, 90-113 grams of protein, and 23-45 grams of carbs on a daily basis. The exact number of carbs it takes to stay in ketosis varies from person to person, but, on average, it's between 20-30 grams a day.
Some keto diet followers choose to track carbs by looking at net carbs vs. their overall carb count because they feel it gives a more accurate picture of digested carbs because your body doesn't actually digest fiber, which is a form of carbohydrate. Net carbs are calculated by subtracting grams of fiber from the total grams of carbs. People who track their net carbs versus total carbs on the keto diet will want to stay below 35 grams of net carbs per day to stay in ketosis, again, with the caveat that the exact number will be different for everyone. (Related: Study Suggests Carbohydrates That Are High In Fiber Are Key to Healthy Life)
Now that you know how and why to track your carb intake, here is a helpful list of keto fruit that's low carb diet-approved. You'll also find the grams of net carbs for
Here is a list of 10 keto fruits that you can munch on while following the keto diet along with the grams of net carbs per one cup of each. Note that your serving size can and should change depending on your carb intake for the day, but this will serve as a good starting guide to keto fruit you certainly eat.
Keto Fruit List
- 1 lemon = 5.4 grams net carbs
- 1 cup blueberries = 17.8 grams net carbs
- 1 cup raspberries = 6.7 grams net carbs
- 1 lime = 5.2 grams net carbs
- 1 cup strawberries = 8.2 grams net carbs
- 1 cup watermelon = 10.9 grams net carbs
- 1 cup avocado = 3.6 grams net carbs
- 1 cup blackberries = 7.1 grams net carbs
- 1 cup cantaloupe = 12.3 grams net carbs
- 1 cup tomato = 3.3 grams net carbs
Lemons, including lemon juice and lemon zest, are used in many keto recipes to add flavor. One lemon provides 24.4 calories, 7.8 grams of carbs, and 2.4 grams of fiber. This equates to 5.4 grams of net carbs. Lemons are also an excellent source of vitamin C. Many recipes use the juice of one-half to one full lemon, and lemon juice can be used to flavor ice pops, baked goods, marinades, dressings, and sauces. (Related: How to Cook with Citrus for a Vitamin C Boost)
One cup of fresh blueberries provides 84.4 calories, 21.4 grams of carbs, 3.6 grams of fiber, and 17.8 grams of net carbs. These blue-hued berries are also an excellent source of vitamin K and C, and the mineral manganese. They're also brimming with anthocyanins, an antioxidant that is found in blue- and red-colored foods, and some research has shown that they may help protect against aging and certain forms of cancer (such as cervical cancer). Use 1/2 or 1/4 cup to top salads, add to baked goods like keto-friendly pancakes, muffins, and waffles, or serve on full-fat Greek yogurt. (Related: 5 Easy Breakfast Ideas Healthier Than a Blueberry Muffin)
Berries are a great keto fruit option to incorporate on a low-carb diet. One cup of fresh raspberries provides 64 calories, 14.7 grams of carbs, and 8.0 grams of fiber (or 6.7 grams of net carbs which is lower than other berries). Like other berries, raspberries are an excellent source of the antioxidant vitamin C and manganese with one cup providing 54 percent and 41 percent, respectively, of the recommended daily amounts. It also offers 12 percent of the recommended daily amount of vitamin K, which is needed to produce the proteins that help with blood clotting and bone metabolism, and numerous other metabolic functions in the body.
Raspberries also contain several phytochemicals including anthocyanins and quercetin. The anti-inflammatory compound anthocyanins may help reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes and may help improve short-term memory, while quercetin has been linked to slowing cancer growth. Enjoy 1/2 to 1/4 cup raspberries in a smoothie, over full-fat cottage cheese, or blended into marinades, sauces, or dressings. (Related: What Are These Phytonutrients Everyone Keeps Talking About?)
Similar to lemons, both the juice and zest of limes can help flavor keto recipes and provide nutrition. One lime provides 20.1 calories, 5.2 grams of net carbs, and 1.9 grams of fiber. Limes are also an excellent source of vitamin C with one lime contributing 32 percent of the daily recommended amount. Limes can be used together with some of these other keto fruits to make sweet-tart ice pops. You can also grate lime zest and stir it into full-fall Greek yogurt for a dip or sauce.
One cup (or about eight strawberries) provides 46.1 calories, 11.1 grams of carbs, and 2.9 grams of fiber—that's 8.2 grams of net carbs. These red gems are jam-packed with, you guessed it, vitamin C. One serving of strawberries (or roughly one cup) has more vitamin C than an orange, actually. They also contain 6 percent of the daily recommended amount of potassium, which helps with muscle contractions and nerve impulses. Potassium is also an electrolyte that helps maintain proper dehydration. (Related: 7 Incredible Health Benefits of Strawberries)
Serve up strawberries over full-fat ricotta with a sprinkle of nuts, in dark chocolate bark, as an addition to a keto "fat bomb", or in a keto-friendly strawberry cream pie.
Just like its name indicates, watermelon is made up of mostly water (92 percent to be exact). One cup of diced watermelon provides 45.6 calories, 11.5 grams of carbs, and 0.6 grams of fiber (or 10.9 grams net carbs). Watermelon is an excellent source of vitamins A and C, and this delicious melon also includes the powerful antioxidant lycopene, which is associated with a lower risk of heart disease and cancer. Enjoy sliced watermelon as a snack or dessert, skewer, and dip into dark chocolate, or serve with full-fat cheese. To enjoy watermelon all year long, take stock when it's in-season, cut the keto fruit into cubes, and freeze. During even the snowiest winter months you can toss the frozen watermelon in the blender for smoothies or juices. (Related: The Health Benefits of Watermelon Besides Keeping You Hydrated)
Technically a fruit, avocados are the creme de la creme of keto fruits. They do contain some carbs but also a whole lot of fat, which is great if you're on the keto diet. One whole avocado provides 322 calories, 17.1 grams of carbs, 13.5 grams of dietary fiber (or 3.6 grams of net carbs), and 29.5 grams of mostly monounsaturated fat, the good kind of fat that can reduce bad cholesterol levels in your blood, therefore, lowering your risk of heart disease and stroke. It's also an excellent source of vitamins C, E, K, and B6, folate, pantothenic acid, and potassium, and a good source of riboflavin, niacin, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, and manganese. Vitamin B6 helps your body produce many hormones such as serotonin, norepinephrine, and melatonin, and copper plays a role in making red blood cells, maintaining nerve cells, and the immune system. The latter also helps form collagen and plays a role in energy production. (Related: Why B Vitamins Are the Secret to More Energy)
This keto fruit also contains the antioxidant lutein, which can help keep eyes healthy, and beta-sitosterol, which studies have linked to lowering blood cholesterol. There are so many ways you can eat avocado (that have nothing to do with gauc), so slice it over a salad, blend it into a smoothie, use as a fat replacement in baking, or slice one in half and fill its center with a cracked egg, then bake. (Related: 10 Delicious Avocado Desserts)
These heavily seeded berries make for a great keto fruit choice. One cup of fresh blackberries provides 61.9 calories, 14.7 grams of carbs, and 7.6 grams of fiber (or 7.1 net carbs). They are also an excellent source of vitamins C and K, as well as manganese. They're also bursting with phytochemicals, which have been shown to help fight or prevent some cancers and may help reduce the risk of heart disease. Top over full-fat Greek yogurt or cottage cheese or combine with lemon to add flavor to sorbets or ice pops. (Related: 10 Protein-Packed Yogurt Bowls That Will Jumpstart Your Morning)
One cup of diced cantaloupe is 53 calories, 12.3 grams of carbs, and 1.4 grams of fiber. It's also an excellent source of vitamins A and C, and a good source of potassium, and the phytochemicals lutein and zeaxanthin, both of which may help promote healthy eyes and also help prevent certain forms of cancer (including breast and lung). Blend cantaloupe into smoothies, wrap slices of it with prosciutto or make chop it to use in homemade salsa.
Tomatoes, also technically a fruit, are a good choice if you're on the keto diet. One medium tomato provides 22.1 calories, 4.8 grams of carbs, and 1.5 grams of fiber (which equals 3.3 grams of net carbs). This red keto fruit is also an excellent source of A and C, and a good source of vitamin K. Cooked tomatoes and tomato products have the phytonutrient lycopene, but raw tomatoes do not provide much of it because lycopene is much more active (aka bioavailable) when processed (like in ketchup or tomato paste) compared to simply eating a slice of tomato off the vine. Use fresh tomatoes in salads or cooked on keto-friendly pizza made with a cauliflower crust (to make it low-carb and keto-friendly), roasted, or baked and stuffed with ground beef.