What Fruits are Keto Friendly? A Guide to the Best Low-Carb Fruits
If you're following the ketogenic diet, you might think that all fruits are off-limits due to their high sugar content. That's simply not the case. There are still many delicious and nutritious fruits that you can enjoy while staying in ketosis.
In this guide, we'll provide you with a comprehensive food list of keto-friendly fruits that are low in carbs and tips on incorporating them into your diet. Whether you’re new to the keto diet or a seasoned pro, you'll find helpful information and ideas for enjoying fruits on your keto journey.
What Is the Keto Diet?
The ketogenic diet has become increasingly popular due to its potential health benefits, especially for weight loss. Aside from weight loss, research has shown that the keto diet may have other potential health benefits.
The concept behind the diet is simple yet revolutionary: high fat, moderate protein, land ow carb. The body enters the metabolic state of ketosis when you significantly reduce carbohydrate intake and increase fat consumption. During ketosis, the liver breaks down stored fat into molecules called ketones, which the body then uses for energy instead of glucose from carbs.
Incorporating a ketogenic diet into your lifestyle can be a significant change. Seeking guidance from qualified professionals such as dietitians or nutritionists can be helpful if you're a beginner. These experts can provide personalized recommendations and help you meet your nutrient needs while following a ketogenic diet.
They can also provide guidance on how to properly balance your macronutrients, choose nutrient-dense foods, and monitor your progress. Always consult your healthcare provider before making significant changes to your diet or lifestyle.
Where Do Carbs Come In?
When you're following a keto diet, the amount of carbs you can have is often limited to a certain range, typically around 20 to 50 grams, depending on your specific approach. These are often referred to as "total carbs," including fiber and sugar. Pay attention to the grams of net carbs, the total carbs minus the grams of fiber, as fiber doesn't impact blood sugar levels.
You might be pleasantly surprised to find that you don't have to cut fruit completely from your keto meal plan. With careful planning and portion control, you can still enjoy some fruits while keeping your carb intake in check. Look for low-carb fruits that are high in fiber, as fiber can help offset the impact of carbs on blood sugar levels.
It's all about balance. Consider saving your carb allowance for nutrient-dense veggies and some fruits that provide valuable vitamins, minerals, and fiber. By being mindful of your carb count, you can still enjoy the health benefits and tastes of fruit while staying in ketosis.
What Fruits Are Not Keto-Friendly?
While many fruits offer essential vitamins and minerals, some are not ideal for the keto diet because of their high sugar and carb content. The following fruit list includes relatively high total and net carb content; we recommend consuming them in small portions.
- Bananas: 25g of total carbs and 22g of net carbs per cup (150g)
- Pineapples: 20 to 22g of total carbs and 18 to 20g of net carbs per cup (165g)
- Mangoes: 22 to 24g of total carbs and 20 to 22g of net carbs per cup (165g)
- Papayas: 16g of total carbs and 14g of net carbs per cup (140g)
- Apples: 21g of total carbs and 18g of net carbs per cup (125g)
- Grapes: 26g of total carbs and 23g of net carbs per cup (151g)
- Oranges: 21g of total carbs and 17g of net carbs per cup (180g)
- Plums: 22 to 26g of total carbs and 17 to 20g of net carbs per cup (165g)
There are also some moderate-carb fruits that could fit into your carb total in moderation. These fruits contain beta-carotene, which the body converts into vitamin A.
- Cantaloupe: 11g of total carbs and nine grams of net carbs per cup (160g)
- Watermelon: 11g of total carbs and 10g of net carbs per cup (152g)
Fruit juices and smoothies are commonly high in added sugars, while dried fruits like raisins and dates are naturally high in sugar. For example, one-fourth cup of raisins contains 31g of carbs, and one date has about six grams of carbs.
Eating fruits that are high in carbs and sugar can easily disrupt your macronutrient balance and potentially take you out of ketosis. However, with careful portion control, all fruits can be considered keto-friendly based solely on their total grams of carbohydrates in one serving.
What Fruits Can You Eat on Keto?
Enjoying fruits in moderation is still possible without jeopardizing ketosis. Keto fruits are naturally lower-carb and high-fiber, making them ideal for a low-carb diet. Squashes like zucchini and pumpkin are also naturally lower-carb and high-fiber fruits, but they likely won’t quite hit the fruity craving right unless you're making pumpkin pie or keto zucchini bread.
These keto fruits can be incorporated into your macros without compromising your dietary goals. To satisfy your sweet cravings and stay on track, consider the following list of the best keto-friendly fruits that allow slightly larger portions without exceeding your carb limits.
Avocado is a versatile fruit that is a favorite among many keto dieters. Its creamy texture and rich flavor make it an excellent source of healthy fats and dietary fiber. In addition to being low in carbs, avocados contain nutrients like potassium, vitamin C, and vitamin K. They are also known for their high content of monounsaturated fats.
One of the best things about avocados is their versatility in recipes. They are a great addition to smoothies or baked goods for a creamy, rich texture. They can be mashed and spread on toast or used as a topping for salads and tacos.
Berries are one of the best choices for a low-carb or ketogenic diet, as they generally have the lowest amount of carbohydrates per serving. Some of the most keto-friendly berries include blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries. Blueberries have a higher carb count but can still fit into macros at a smaller serving size.
Blackberries are a fantastic source of vitamin C, vitamin K, and manganese. A half-cup serving contains only 3.5 grams of net carbs.
Raspberries have a high fiber content, providing eight grams of fiber per cup. A half-cup serving of raspberries contains 3.3 grams of net carbs.
Strawberries are another popular berry choice, as they are rich in vitamin C, manganese, and folate. A half-cup serving of strawberries contains 5.5 grams of net carbs.
Select fresh berries over dried or canned options, which may contain added sugars. Enjoy fresh berries with keto whipped cream, or bake them into a berry crisp.
Star fruit, also known as carambola, has a unique tangy-sweet flavor and low carbohydrate content. It contains only three to four grams of net carbs per 100 grams, making it a relatively low-carb fruit option.
You can also use star fruit slices as a topping for keto-friendly salads or as a decorative element in a fruit salad. Its distinctive star shape can make any dish visually appealing while adding a tangy and slightly sweet flavor to your keto meals.
Pomegranates are a delicious fruit with a unique, tangy flavor. They are also an excellent option due to their relatively low carbohydrate content. One-half cup of pomegranate seeds contains about 12 grams of carbs with 3.5 grams of fiber.
Pomegranates are also a great source of vitamins C, K, and flavonoids. Plus, their seeds add a fun crunch to any dish or snack. Add pomegranate seeds to a salad, smoothie, or yogurt for flavor and nutrition.
Cranberries are a tart and tasty fruit typically associated with the holiday season. While not the lowest in carbs, they can still be enjoyed in moderation. One way to enjoy cranberries is to make your own sauce using keto-friendly sweeteners like stevia or erythritol. Add fresh cranberries to your favorite keto smoothie for extra flavor and nutrition.
For a refreshing summer treat, try making a keto-friendly cranberry sorbet. Simply blend fresh or frozen cranberries with coconut milk, lemon juice, and a keto sweetener like monk fruit or stevia.
Freeze the mixture in an ice cream maker or a shallow dish in the freezer, occasionally stirring to prevent it from getting too icy. Serve the sorbet with a whipped cream dollop or fresh berries for a delicious and guilt-free dessert.
Limes can be a versatile and flavorful addition to a ketogenic diet. These tangy citrus fruits are low in carbohydrates, containing just five grams of net carbs per 100 grams. Their zesty flavor can add a burst of acidity to beverages, dressings, and sauces without significantly impacting carb intake.
Enjoy the zesty and refreshing flavor that limes can bring to your keto-friendly meals and drinks! Use freshly squeezed lime juice in homemade dressings, marinades, and beverages for a burst of flavor without added sugars. Don't forget about lime zest for added aroma and taste.
With its sweet flavor and vibrant green color, kiwi can be a delicious and nutritious addition to a ketogenic diet. They are relatively low in carbohydrates, containing around 12 grams of net carbs per 100 grams.
Try making a kiwi smoothie, kiwi salsa, kiwi salad, kiwi dessert, or kiwi skewers for creative and low-carb options. They are packed with essential nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin K, and vitamin E, making them a nutrient-dense fruit choice for a well-rounded keto diet.
What Are Some Other Sweet Keto Snacks?
Following a keto diet doesn't mean you must abandon sweet treats altogether. Plenty of delicious, keto-friendly options exist to satisfy your sweet tooth. Dr. Kellyann's Keto Brownies, made with pumpkin puree and our Chocolate Bone Broth Protein Powder, are a guilt-free indulgence and perfect for satisfying your cravings.
Dr. Kellyann's keto-friendly line of products offers a range of other delicious options for those following a keto diet. For a refreshing summer treat, try making a keto smoothie using ingredients like frozen berries, unsweetened almond milk, and a packet of our chocolate or vanilla Collagen Shake or Smoothie. Not only is this smoothie low in carbs and high in healthy fats, but it's also a great way to cool down on a hot day.
The Bottom Line
The keto diet can be challenging, but with careful planning and attention to nutrition, it is possible to indulge your sweet tooth without compromising your health goals. Remember to stay positive, stay motivated, and enjoy your journey!
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Database
The Ketogenic Diet | National Library of Medicine
Is the Keto Diet Safe? What are the Risks? | UChicago Medicine