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Are Grapes Keto-Friendly? (& Better Substitutes)

On the ketogenic diet the goal is to keep your carbohydrate intake low enough. What about grapes, are they keto-friendly?

Grapes are a type of berry that is grown in warmer climates. You might have visited or seen a vineyard before. This is a collection of grape-bearing vines.

This fruit is extremely popular, partly because it is used to make wine. However, grapes also make for a great snack or addition to other recipes.

The net amount of carbs, which comes down to total carbs minus carbs from fiber, in raw grapes is around 17.2 grams per 100 grams.

While it depends on the rest of your diet, for most people grapes are not very keto-friendly. There are many substitutes for grapes that are better for staying in ketosis.

When is a food keto-friendly

The goal of the ketogenic diet is to put your body into ketosis, a state where it starts mainly burning fat as a fuel (1). This comes down to more or less getting 55%-60% of your macronutrients from fat, 30%-35% from protein, and 5%-10% from carbohydrates.

For most people this comes down to eating around 20g – 50g of carbohydrates a day.

In reality, this number is different depending on a lot of factors. For example, people who exercise a lot may be able to consume more carbohydrates before getting kicked out of ketosis.

That being said that daily amount can be a good general guideline.

It is also common to exclude fiber from this amount since it doesn’t get absorbed into your body the same way as regular carbohydrates.

Carbs in grapes

100 grams of grapes, red or green contains the following amounts of carbs (2):

  • Total carbs: 18.1 grams
  • Of which fiber: 0.9 grams
  • Net carbs: 17.2 grams

Combined with the other foods in your diet the 17.2 grams of net carbs in 100 grams of grapes is likely enough to kick you out of ketosis.

One grape is about 4.9 grams, so 10 grapes contain the following amounts of carbs:

  • Total carbs: 8.9 grams
  • Of which fiber: 0.4 grams
  • Net carbs: 8.5 grams

Even the number of net carbs in 10 grapes, 8.5 grams, may be a challenge to fit into a keto diet.

Carbs in dried grapes

The above amounts of net carbs in grapes are with raw grapes. You can also eat grapes in their dried form, called raisins, but this will impact how keto-friendly they are.

Here is the comparison between raw grapes and raisins as an example (2, 3).

Values Per 100gRaw GrapesRaisins
Total Carbohydrates8.9 g78.5 g
Of Which Fiber0.4 g6.8 g
Net Carbs8.5 g71.7 g
Chart of carbs in raw grapes vs raisins

As you can see, if you decide to eat grapes on the ketogenic diet, you preferably want to eat them raw, not dried.

Other nutrients in grapes

Other nutrients like fat, protein, vitamins, and minerals also still matter on the ketogenic diet.

100 grams of raw grapes contains the following nutrients (2):

  • Calories: 69
  • Protein: 0.7 grams
  • Carbs: 18.1 grams
  • Part of the carbs that is fiber: 0.9 grams
  • Fat: 0.2 grams
  • Vitamin C: 18% of the DV (Daily Value)
  • Vitamin K: 18% of the DV
  • Copper: 6% of the DV
  • Thiamin: 5% of the DV
  • Potassium: 5% of the DV

And some other vitamins and minerals in smaller amounts.

On top of being slightly higher in net carbs grapes do not contain that many valuable nutrients per 100 grams compared to many other foods.

How to avoid eating too many grapes

By now it is clear that to be able to fit grapes in your keto diet, you will have to exercise some portion control. Having a big bowl of grapes near you and hoping that you don’t eat too many is not the ideal way to do this.

You can avoid eating too many grapes with some of the following tips:

  • Plan ahead, how many grapes will you eat?
  • Put the planned amount in a small bowl and leave the other grapes out of sight
  • Don’t eat during other activities like watching TV
  • Consider not buying them if you can’t control yourself

If you notice you get out of ketosis you may need to reduce the number of grapes you eat.

Substitutes for grapes on keto

Grapes are not the only option when you want to eat fruit on the ketogenic diet. In fact, grapes are relatively high in net carbs compared to other fruits and berries.

Some of the following substitutes may be better on the keto diet. These are the net carb values per 100 grams (4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9):

  • Blackberries: 4.9 grams of net carbs
  • Raspberries: 5.4 grams of net carbs
  • Strawberries: 5.7 grams of net carbs
  • Watermelon: 7.1 grams of net carbs
  • Cranberries: 7.6 grams of net carbs
  • Cantaloupe: 7.9 grams of net carbs

If you have trouble staying in ketosis but still craving a lot for fruit it may be smart to choose some of these substitutes over grapes.

What is your goal with keto?

Even a small number of grapes added to certain daily diets can potentially put you just over the net carbs border, out of ketosis. Depending on the goal you have with keto this may or may not be a problem.

If your goal is to stay strictly in ketosis 24/7 you want to be careful about your carbohydrate intake.

If your goal is to lose weight and become healthier, grapes can be a good food option even if they potentially put you at a carbohydrate level slightly above your ketosis level.

There is a slight difference in calories between red and green grapes but these tiny differences are not that relevant.