Keto vegetables: what vegetables can you eat on a ketogenic diet?

5 min readMay 16, 2022


Keto vegetables: what vegetables can you eat on a ketogenic diet?

Keto vegetables: what vegetables can you eat on a ketogenic diet?

It seems that vegetables on the keto diet are a relatively simple topic. After all, most of them contain a small amount of carbohydrates, so they can successfully become part of a ketogenic diet. However, it is good to know their secrets, so that through oversight or lack of knowledge you do not disturb the state of ketosis in the body. See which vegetables you need to give up, what keto vegetables are and when you can bend your dietary rules a bit to eat more carbohydrates.

Why are vegetables so important on the keto diet?

If you’ve already learned the tenets of the ketogenic diet, you’ve probably noticed that keto menus can seem monotonous, to say the least. People who are new to this diet may feel lost at first and wonder what to eat on keto so as not to break the state of ketosis. A low-carbohydrate diet is an elimination diet, so many foods that we are used to eating every day disappear from our daily menus.

One of them is fruit, which, because it is rich in carbohydrates, must be eaten under strict control. Vegetables rich in carbohydrates, i.e. in starch, also fall off the menu, but their list is so short that their absence can be easily compensated by reaching for other fresh products. So it is easy to see that vegetables in the ketogenic diet — largely replacing fruit — are almost the only source of essential vitamins and trace elements.

Vegetables on keto adaptation

Keto adaptation is the first stage of a low-carbohydrate diet that allows the body to enter a state of ketosis. It usually lasts from 2 to 4 weeks and is a big challenge for the body to switch to a different energy source than sugars. Gradually getting the body accustomed to deriving energy from fats has its challenges.

The first is to control the carbohydrate intake. In order for the body to “unlearn” the use of sugars, it must receive less of them. Therefore, in addition to eliminating high carbohydrate foods from your diet, on keto adaptation you must also carefully choose the foods you eat. So what vegetables on keto adaptation are safe? At this stage, it is best to only go for keto vegetables, which are low carbohydrate vegetables.

The second challenge is getting all the essential vitamins and micronutrients into the body, which are most easily obtained from fresh vegetables. Therefore, vegetables on keto should be a constant component of all meals. It is worth remembering that the metabolic changes that occur during keto adaptation affect not only your overall well-being, but also your gut microflora, body water levels, and most importantly, your levels of B vitamins and micronutrients like sodium, potassium, and magnesium. Ketogenic vegetables can compensate for this deficiency.

Supplementing their deficiency is a priority because it protects against the occurrence of the so-called keto flu, characterized by irritability, lack of concentration, sleep problems, headaches and constipation and diarrhea.

Vegetables allowed on a ketogenic diet

Vegetables on keto are the most diverse group of foods on a ketogenic diet. Thanks to them, the keto menu can be really varied and the meals tasty and well-balanced. Those with the lowest carbohydrate content are also the best vegetables in the first weeks of the diet. The rule of selection is simple — choose those with the lowest carbohydrate ratio and containing a lot of water.

Keto vegetables are primarily in leafy vegetables, a rich group of foods that include:

lettuce (100 g contains 2.9 g of carbohydrates),

Arugula (100 g contains 3.7 g of carbohydrates),

spinach (100 g contains 3 g of carbohydrates),

Lamb’s lettuce (100 g contains 3.6 g carbohydrate),

kale (100 g contain 6.1 g carbohydrate),

Vegetables allowed on the ketogenic diet also include:

mushrooms (100 g contains 2.6 g of carbohydrates),

cucumbers (100 g contain 2.9 g carbohydrates),

cauliflower (100 g contains 5 g of carbohydrates),

broccoli (100 g contain 5.2 g carbohydrate),

white cabbage (100 g contain 7.4 g carbohydrates),

red cabbage (100 g contain 6.7 g carbohydrate),

Chinese cabbage (100 g contain 3.2 g carbohydrate),

radicchio (100 g contain 4.1 g carbohydrate),

zucchini (100 g contain 3.2 g carbohydrate),

green bell bell pepper (100 g contain 4.6 g carbohydrate),

radishes (100 g contain 4.4 g carbohydrates),

What else is worth remembering? In order to diversify the menu it is good to reach for keto vegetables, which can be eaten in different forms. A good choice is the keto tomato (100 g of raw tomatoes contain 3.6 g of carbohydrates), which can also be taken in the form of juice (100 g contain 2.6 g of carbohydrates).

Pickles — homemade vegetables for keto

When creating a keto menu it’s worth to pay attention to the typical Polish keto vegetables, namely pickles. If you’re on such a demanding diet it’s a good idea to reach for pickled cucumbers (100 g contain 1.9 g of carbohydrates), sauerkraut (100 g contain 3.4 g of carbohydrates) or drink pickle juice alone (100 g contain 7.9 g of carbohydrates). They’re safe ketogenic vegetables, a great source of B vitamins, and thanks to their lactic acid bacteria content, also a great natural probiotic.

Vegetables on keto that you should give up

You already know what vegetables you can eat on keto. And which ones are better to avoid? Vegetables rich in starch, a complex plant sugar, are obviously a threat to ketosis. What vegetables on keto need to be almost completely eliminated? Unfortunately, mainly those that often appear in our daily diet.

Here are the most undesirable vegetables in the ketogenic diet:

late potatoes (100 g contain 20.5 g of carbohydrates),

new potatoes (100 g contain 16.3 g of carbohydrates),

yams (100 g contain 20 g of carbohydrates),

maize (100 g contain 23.5 g of carbohydrates),

broad beans (100 g contain 18 g of carbohydrates).

It is also worth noting that in dried vegetables, as in fruits, the level of carbohydrates increases significantly. For example, 100 green peas contain 17 g of carbohydrates, but dry peas — already 60 g. The same is true for beans — 100 g of dry beans are as high as 63 g of carbohydrates, while raw beans contain only 13 g. Therefore, the vegetables on the keto diet used in preparing meals should be fresh or frozen.




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