Is Cantaloupe Keto-Friendly? (& Substitutes)

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Fruits typically do not mix well with ketogenic diets. Find out whether cantaloupe is a keto-friendly exception and what other options there are.

Raw cantaloupe contains around 7.4 grams of net carbs aka total carbohydrates minus fiber per 100 grams.

It is fair to say that cantaloupe is generally not that keto-friendly. However, it is still one of the more keto-friendly fruits.

That means you can likely eat small amounts of cantaloupe while staying in ketosis but you may need to keep your portions small and pay some extra attention to the other things you eat too.

You can also consider eating some of the lower-carb substitutes instead of cantaloupe.

Carbs in cantaloupe

To figure out whether a food like cantaloupe is keto-friendly in your situation and in what amounts, you want to know how many carbs it contains.

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

  • Total carbs: 8.2 grams
  • Of which fiber: 0.8 grams
  • Net carbs: 7.4 grams

There are definitely many foods that contain more than 7.4 grams of net carbohydrates per 100 grams. At the same time, this amount will still often be enough to kick you out of ketosis.

In turn, you can say that cantaloupe is generally not that keto-friendly.

One cup of cantaloupe is about 155 grams and contains the following amounts of carbs:

  • Total carbs: 12.6 grams
  • Of which fiber: 1.2 grams
  • Net carbs: 11.4 grams

As you can expect, consuming more cantaloupe will also mean eating more carbohydrates. These amounts are even more likely to kick you out of ketosis.

How many grams of cantaloupe you eat will influence the number of carbs you eat a lot. That also means smaller amounts could be low enough in carbs to consider on a ketogenic diet.

Other nutrition information cantaloupe

The number of carbs in cantaloupe is important when following a ketogenic diet but sometimes it can be helpful to look at the other nutrition information too.

Nutrients like fat, protein, vitamins, and minerals still influence whether you stay in ketosis and how good cantaloupe is for your health.

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

  • Calories: 38
  • Protein: 0.8 grams
  • Carbs: 8.2 grams
  • Part of the carbs that is fiber: 0.8 grams
  • Fat: 0.2 grams
  • Vitamin C: 18% of the DV (Daily Value)
  • Potassium: 4% of the DV
  • Folate: 4% of the DV
  • Niacin: 3% of the DV
  • Thiamin: 3% of the DV

And some other vitamins and minerals in smaller amounts.

On top of being somewhat higher in carbs, cantaloupe does not contain that many nutrients in large amounts.

From a nutrition standpoint, it is likely not worth implementing small amounts of cantaloupe in your ketogenic diet.

Why cantaloupe will not always knock you out of ketosis

While it is typically not recommended, you could still be able to eat small amounts of cantaloupe on keto. For example, because you like its taste.

Quickly going over the keto basics can help you understand why this is and how to avoid overdoing it with your cantaloup portions.

Ketogenic diets are ways of eating where you keep your carb intake below a certain level to get into ketosis. This is a state where your body mainly uses fat as fuel (2).

Below what level your carbohydrate intake has to be to stay in ketosis depends on many details. Some of these include your weight, body composition, and workout habits.

This makes the reality of ketogenic diets somewhat more confusing. At the same time, there are still imperfect general recommendations to steer you in the right direction.

One typical recommendation for getting into ketosis is consuming 55%-60% of your calories in fat, 30%-35% in protein, and 5%-10% in carbohydrates.

Most people will conclude that they can eat about 20 to 50 grams of carbs a day after applying these percentages.

Something to note is that you typically don’t include fiber from cantaloup and other foods in these guidelines. Fiber is a category of carbs but your body deals with it in different ways.

How to avoid eating too much cantaloupe on keto

By now you should understand that your portions of cantaloupe will have to be small to stay in ketosis.

Slicing up a few melons and hoping that your carb intake won’t be too high is typically not a successful strategy.

Instead, try following some of these tips to keep your cantaloupe consumption under control:

  • Plan in advance how many grams of cantaloupe align with your keto goals
  • Weigh out this many grams of cantaloup and put the rest somewhere out of sight
  • Don’t eat uncontrolled amounts of cantaloup while doing other things like reading a book
  • Consider buying smaller or no portions of cantaloupe if you really crave it too much

It is possible that you still get kicked out of ketosis while following these tips.

In a situation like that, you want to reconsider how many grams of cantaloupe fit into your keto diet.

Substitutes for cantaloupe on keto

Cantaloupe is not the only food out there with a somewhat sweeter taste.

This fruit is one of the lower-carb ones but there are a few even more keto-friendly options too. These could make it easier to stay in ketosis while still giving your taste buds what they want.

You can find the amounts of net carbohydrates per 100 grams next to the cantaloup substitutes (3, 4, 5, 6):

  • 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

You do want to keep in mind that these other fruits still contain decent amounts of carbohydrates. Similar to cantaloupe, you may still need to implement portion control to keep your diet keto-friendly.

Why do you follow a keto diet?

There are many situations where cantaloupe can raise your carbohydrate consumption too much to be considered keto-friendly.

How much of an issue this is depends on why you want to follow a keto diet.

For example, cantaloupe can be good for weight loss and decent for general health even if it kicks you out of ketosis.

Ketogenic diets are typically not the only ways to achieve these health goals.

On the flip side, it is also possible that you have/want to stay in strict ketosis every minute of the day. In that case, it is likely smarter to stay away from cantaloupe.


Is cantaloupe low in carbs?

100 grams of cantaloupe contain around 8.2 grams of carbohydrates (including 0.8 grams of fiber). Compared to other fruits, cantaloup is somewhat low in carbs. Compared to many other foods, this is not that low-carb.

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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.