Is Broccoli Keto-Friendly? (& Substitutes)

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Vegetables are often keto-friendly but there are exceptions. Find out whether broccoli is a good choice for ketogenic diets.

100 grams of raw broccoli contain around 4 grams of net carbohydrates (total carbs minus fiber).

Since this is still relatively low, you can say that broccoli tends to be keto-friendly.

On the other hand, it is worth noting that even small amounts of carbohydrates can sometimes kick you out of ketosis.

You may want to keep an eye on your broccoli portions and the other foods you eat anyway.

Additionally, there are also substitutes that are lower in carbs. Choosing these can make it easier to stay in ketosis.

Carbs in broccoli

How many carbs there are in broccoli plays a big role in whether this vegetable is keto-friendly for you and how many grams you can eat while staying in ketosis.

100 grams of raw broccoli contain the following amounts of carbs (1):

  • Total carbs: 6.6 grams
  • Of which fiber: 2.6 grams
  • Net carbs: 4 grams

Because 4 grams of net carbs per 100 grams is relatively low, it is fair to say that broccoli is often keto-friendly.

On the other hand, you need to know that even this amount can be enough to kick you out of ketosis in certain situations.

1/2 cup of chopped raw broccoli is about 44 grams, and has the following amounts of carbs:

  • Total carbs: 2.9 grams
  • Of which fiber: 1.1 grams
  • Net carbs: 1.8 grams

As you can expect, eating smaller amounts of broccoli will also reduce how many grams of carbohydrates you consume.

In turn, this makes it easier to stay in ketosis while eating a diet that includes broccoli.

Other nutrition information broccoli

The number of carbs in broccoli is definitely important on a ketogenic diet but you want to remember that there are other nutrients too.

Fats, proteins, vitamins, and minerals still influence whether you stay in ketosis and how good broccoli is for purposes like losing weight and getting healthier.

100 grams of raw broccoli contain the following nutrients (1):

  • Calories: 34
  • Protein: 2.8 grams
  • Carbs: 6.6 grams
  • Part of the carbs that is fiber: 2.6 grams
  • Fat: 0.4 grams
  • Vitamin C: 149% of the DV (Daily Value)
  • Vitamin K: 127% of the DV
  • Folate: 16% of the DV
  • Vitamin A: 12% of the DV
  • Manganese: 10% of the DV

And some other vitamins and minerals in smaller amounts.

Besides being low in net carbohydrates, broccoli contains a few valuable nutrients in nice amounts. This can make this vegetable a nice addition to a healthy ketogenic diet.

Something to note is that broccoli contains a high amount of vitamin K. This vitamin can interfere with certain blood-thinning medications (2).

People who take these likely want to talk to their doctor before eating a lot more broccoli.

Why broccoli is not always keto-friendly

It is important to understand that relatively keto-friendly foods like broccoli can sometimes kick you out of ketosis. To avoid this it can be helpful to go over the keto basics.

Ketogenic diets are ways of eating where you put your body into ketosis. This is a state where you mainly burn fat as fuel (3).

To get into ketosis you need to lower your carbohydrate consumption below a certain level. Where this level is depends on details like your weight, muscle mass, genes, and exercise habits.

So in reality, how many grams of broccoli and carbs you can eat while staying in ketosis is not that straightforward.

Luckily, there are still general keto recommendations. These are not perfect but do give some idea of how many grams of carbs you can eat on this diet.

A typical guideline is consuming 55%-60% of your macronutrients from fat, 30%-35% from protein, and 5%-10% from carbohydrates.

If you apply these ratios to the calories you eat, you will likely conclude you can eat something around 20 to 50 grams of carbs a day.

Something important to note is that you don’t include the fiber in broccoli and other foods in these amounts. Fiber is a category of carbohydrates but your body processes it in more keto-friendly ways.

Substitutes for broccoli on keto

Broccoli is a relatively low-carb way to implement more nutrients in your ketogenic diet. At the same time, there are even lower-carb vegetables that could fulfill a similar purpose.

You may prefer these broccoli substitutes in terms of taste anyway. Additionally, switching up the vegetables you eat can make your ketogenic diet more enjoyable and easier to stick to.

The numbers next to these vegetables are the amounts of net carbs per 100 grams (4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9):

  • Chicory: 0.9 grams of net carbs
  • Spinach: 1.4 grams of net carbs
  • Green leaf lettuce: 1.5 grams of net carbs
  • Celery: 1.8 grams of net carbs
  • Radishes: 1.9 grams of net carbs
  • Asparagus: 2.1 grams of net carbs

As you can see, there are still some amounts of carbs in these substitutes. Similar to broccoli, there are limits to how many grams of these are keto-friendly.

Is cauliflower or broccoli better for keto?

Besides in color, cauliflower and broccoli are somewhat similar vegetables. For this reason and others, many people wonder which option is better for keto.

As mentioned, raw broccoli contains around 4 grams of net carbs per 100 grams.

On the other side, raw cauliflower contains around 3 grams of net carbohydrates per 100 grams (5 grams in total including 2 grams of fiber).

In terms of net carbs, it is fair to say that cauliflower is often more keto-friendly than broccoli.

It would be interesting to see whether the slightly higher amount of fiber in broccoli changes this in any way.

What is your goal with staying in ketosis?

While broccoli is often keto-friendly, it is possible that even small amounts raise your carbohydrate too much in certain situations.

Whether this is a problem depends on your goal with staying in ketosis.

For example, there are people who need/want to stay in ketosis 24/7. These individuals can likely still consider broccoli but may need to be careful about their portion sizes.

On the flip side, broccoli is typically good for weight loss and health. Even if it raises your carb intake to a level where you get out of ketosis.

A ketogenic diet can be helpful but it is generally not the only way to achieve the health goals above.

Related posts:


Is broccoli good for low-carb diets?

100 grams of raw broccoli contain around 4 grams of net carbohydrates. Because this is relatively low, broccoli is typically considered to be good for low-carb diets.

Are there any carbs in broccoli?

Yes, there are carbs in broccoli. More specifically, raw broccoli contains around 6.6 grams of carbs (including 2.6 grams of fiber).

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Matt Claes founded Weight Loss Made Practical to help people get in shape and stay there after losing 37 pounds and learning the best of the best about weight loss, health, and longevity for over 4 years. Over these years he has become an expert in nutrition, exercise, and other physical health aspects.