Are Cranberries Keto-Friendly? (& Alternatives)

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You typically want to stay away from fruits on ketogenic diets. Find out if cranberries are an exception to this guideline.

Raw cranberries contain around 8.4 grams of net carbohydrates (total carbs minus fiber) per 100 grams.

Since this is often enough to kick you out of ketosis, it is fair to say that raw cranberries are generally not keto-friendly. At least not in the amount above.

In theory, you could eat small amounts of raw cranberries without getting out of ketosis. Whether you want to use this many of your daily carbs on that is a different question.

That aside, you typically want to avoid cranberry juice, dried cranberries, and cranberry jam on keto. These preparation methods tend to contain more carbs per 100 grams.

Additionally, there are fruits that are lower in carbs. If you prefer these over cranberries in terms of taste anyway, they could make it easier for you to stay in ketosis.

Carbs in cranberries

The number of carbs in cranberries is an important detail for figuring out whether this food is keto-friendly for you and in what amounts.

100 grams or about one cup of cranberries contain the following amounts of carbs (1):

  • Total carbs: 12 grams
  • Of which fiber: 3.6 grams
  • Net carbs: 8.4 grams

If you take the carbs in the other foods you eat into account, the 8.4 grams of net carbohydrates in 100 grams of cranberries is likely too much for a ketogenic diet.

One ounce of cranberries is about 28 grams and contains the following amounts of carbs:

  • Total carbs: 3.4 grams
  • Of which fiber: 1 gram
  • Net carbs: 2.4 grams

At the same time, you can see that how many grams of cranberries you decide to eat will influence your carb intake a lot.

If you make your portions small enough and pay enough attention to the other foods you eat, you may be able to fit cranberries into a keto-friendly diet.

Other nutritional details about cranberries

How many carbohydrates cranberries contain is definitely important on keto but other nutrients still matter too.

Fats, proteins, vitamins, and minerals can not only influence whether you stay in ketosis but also play a role in how good this fruit will be for your health.

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

  • Calories: 46
  • Protein: 0.5 grams
  • Carbs: 12 grams
  • Part of the carbs that is fiber: 3.6 grams
  • Fat: 0.1 grams
  • Vitamin C: 23% of the DV (Daily Value)
  • Vitamin E: 7% of the DV
  • Vitamin K: 6% of the DV
  • Vitamin B6: 3% of the DV
  • Copper: 3% of the DV

And some other vitamins and minerals in smaller amounts.

Besides their above-average fiber content, cranberries are not that impressive when it comes to nutrients.

If you don’t consider any personal preferences for their taste, it is likely not worth making the effort to fit cranberries into y our ketogenic diet.

Carbs in dried cranberries

You can eat cranberries in many forms. One of these is dried.

However, by removing a lot of the water content, you also influence the carb content per 100 grams and how keto-friendly the cranberries are a lot.

More precisely, you can find the amounts of carbs in raw and dried cranberries in the table below (1, 2).

One thing to note first is that the nutritional values are for “sweetened dried cranberries”.

Since dried cranberries generally have a more bitter taste you will mainly find dried cranberries with added sugar or sweeteners.

If you do have the choice between dried cranberries with or without added sugar, the ones with no added sugar are more keto-friendly.

Values Per 100gRaw CranberriesDried Cranberries
Total Carbohydrates12 g82.8 g
Of Which Fiber3.6 g5.3 g
Net Carbs8.4 g77.5 g
Chart of carbs in raw cranberries vs sweetened dried cranberries

It should be clear that dried cranberries are not that keto-friendly. Especially compared to its regular raw form.

Why cranberries can be keto in small amounts

As briefly mentioned, you could eat even foods like cranberries that are not that keto-friendly in small amounts while staying in ketosis.

The keto guidelines below can help you understand why and help you avoid overdoing it with cranberries.

You can consider any diet where you keep your carbohydrate intake low enough to get into ketosis to be a ketogenic diet. Ketosis is a state where your body mainly burns fat for energy (3).

How low your carbohydrate intake has to be for this depends on details like your weight, muscle mass, genes, movement habits, etc.

This keto fact needs to be mentioned but there are still general guidelines. These are not perfect for everyone but help you get an idea of how many grams of cranberries could be keto-friendly in your situation.

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

In practice, this typically means consuming around 20 to 50 grams of carbs a day.

You generally don’t include the fiber in cranberries and other foods in these amounts. While fiber is a category of carbs, your body deals with it in different ways.

Are dried cranberries keto-friendly?

As mentioned above, dried cranberries contain around 82.8 grams of total carbs including 5.3 grams of fiber (2).

The resulting 77.5 grams of net carbohydrates in 100 grams of dried cranberries is definitely not keto-friendly. Even in small amounts, they will likely kick you out of ketosis.

How to avoid eating too many cranberries on keto

If you decide to eat cranberries on keto, you will have to keep an eye on your portion sizes.

Just munching on a big bowl of cranberries while watching an interesting movie will typically result in you getting out of ketosis.

Following these portion control tips will typically offer better results:

  • Estimate how many grams of cranberries would align with your keto goals before you start eating
  • Weigh out this many cranberries and put the rest somewhere else
  • Don’t eat unlimited amounts of cranberries while doing other activities like watching a movie
  • If you like cranberries and crave the too much you may want to consider buying smaller or no portions

Depending on your keto goals, you may want to play it safe with your cranberry estimations.

Cranberry alternatives on keto

Why you are considering cranberries on a ketogenic diet influences what alternative options you will enjoy the most.

The low-carb fruits below do not offer the same bitter taste but they do offer similar nutrients and amounts of fiber.

You can find the amounts of net carbohydrates next to the cranberry alternatives (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
  • Lime: 7.7 grams of net carbs
  • Cantaloupe: 7.9 grams of net carbs

If you do decide that these cranberry alternatives are worth implementing on keto, keep in mind that they still contain good amounts of carbs.

Similar to cranberries, there will be a good amount of situations where these alternatives will increase your carb intake too much to stay in ketosis.

What is your goal with cranberries and keto?

By now it should be clear that cranberries can often get you out of ketosis due to their somewhat higher carb content.

What your goal is with cranberries and keto diets will influence how much of an issue this is.

As an example, you could be trying to lose weight and get healthier and consider cranberries because you like their taste.

For these health goals, cranberries can be good even if they kick you out of ketosis. A ketogenic diet is typically not the only way to lose weight and get healthier.

A quick note is that dried cranberries are still often not that good for weight loss and health.

On the other hand, there are individuals who need/want to stay in strict ketosis every minute of the day. If this applies to you, you likely want to stay away from cranberries.

Especially in their higher-carb preparation methods.


Can you have dried cranberries on keto?

Sweetened dried cranberries contain around 77.5 grams of net carbohydrates per 100 grams. In turn, you can generally not have them on keto.

Is cranberry high in carbs?

Cranberries contain around 12 grams of carbohydrates (including 3.6 grams of fiber) per 100 grams. While this is not low either, cranberries are not that high in carbs.

Are cranberries high in sugar?

100 grams of raw cranberries contain around 4.3 grams of sugar. There are definitely foods with less but cranberries are not that high in sugar compared to many food options.

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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.