Is Okra Keto-Friendly? (& Substitutes)

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You have to be mindful of plant-based foods to stay in ketosis. Find out whether okra is keto-friendly and in what recipes and portions.

100 grams of raw okra contain around 4.3 grams of net carbohydrates (total carbs minus fiber). The same quantity of boiled okra only 2 grams of net carbs.

That means it is fair to say that okra is relatively keto-friendly.

You do want to keep in mind that even low-carb foods like this can sometimes kick you out of ketosis. What other foods you combine okra with and in what amounts still matters if you want to stay in ketosis.

Something else to note is that pickled and especially fried okra are not that keto-friendly. Even in small amounts, you likely don’t want to use so many of your daily carbs on such small amounts of food.

Carbs in okra

How many carbs there are in okra is important to figure out whether this food is keto-friendly and in what amounts.

100 grams or about 1 cup of raw okra contains the following amounts of carbs (1):

  • Total carbs: 7.5 grams
  • Of which fiber: 3.2 grams
  • Net carbs: 4.3 grams

There are foods with fewer carbohydrates but the 4.3 grams of net carbs in 100 grams of raw okra is still reasonably low.

Even though you may still need to keep an eye on your portions, it is fair to say that okra is relatively keto-friendly.

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

  • Total carbs: 2.1 grams
  • Of which fiber: 0.9 grams
  • Net carbs: 1.2 grams

By eating smaller portions of okra you also consume fewer carbs. This makes it easier to stay in ketosis while eating this food.

In the end, whether okra is keto-friendly for you or not depends a lot on the other foods you eat, your body, and what portions you are considering.

Other nutrition facts about okra

The number of carbs in okra and other foods is definitely important on a ketogenic diet but other nutrients matter too.

Fats, proteins, vitamins, and minerals still influence whether or not you stay in ketosis and how good your general health will be.

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

  • Calories: 33
  • Protein: 1.9 grams
  • Carbs: 7.5 grams
  • Part of the carbs that is fiber: 3.2 grams
  • Fat: 0.2 grams
  • Vitamin K: 39% of the DV (Daily Value)
  • Manganese: 39% of the DV
  • Vitamin C: 38% of the DV
  • Folate: 15% of the DV
  • Magnesium: 14% of the DV

And some other vitamins and minerals in smaller amounts.

On top of being reasonably low in carbs, okra also contains nice amounts of certain valuable nutrients.

This can make it a great food option for people who want to follow a healthy ketogenic diet.

Why okra is sometimes not keto-friendly

Okra is not just always or never keto-friendly. Quickly going over the keto fundamentals can help you understand why this is and help you avoid getting kicked out of ketosis.

Ketogenic diets are ways of eating where you get and stay in ketosis. This is a state where you mainly use fat as fuel (2). You get into ketosis by lowering your carbohydrate intake enough.

To what extent you have to reduce your carb consumption depends on details like your body weight, muscle mass, workout habits, etc.

This fact of ketogenic diets makes things more challenging but there are some general guidelines that can steer you in the right direction. These are not perfect but can be helpful.

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

If you do the calculation, you will likely conclude that you can eat around 20 grams to 50 grams of carbs a day.

Keep in mind that you don’t include the fiber in okra or other foods in this number. It is true that fiber is a category of carbs but your body deals with it in more keto-friendly ways

How much okra can you eat on keto?

With the fundamentals above you can start to figure out how much of what types of okra you can eat on keto.

The first step is estimating (or measuring) how many carbs from what types of food sources you can eat before getting kicked out of ketosis.

Next, you want to see how much of your daily limit you already consume in other foods.

Lastly, you can take another look at the carbs in okra and estimate how many grams you would be able to eat.

For example, you may conclude that you can eat around 20 grams of net carbs a day on keto and count that you already ate 18 grams.

In that situation, you could conclude that you can eat about 46 grams of raw okra on your keto diet.

Is boiled okra keto-friendly?

While you can eat okra raw, many people choose to prepare it in a variety of ways. This can influence its carb content per 100 grams and in turn, how keto-friendly it is.

100 grams of boiled okra contain the following amounts of carbs (3):

  • Total carbs: 4.5 grams
  • Of which fiber: 2.5 grams
  • Net carbs: 2 grams

This nutrition data implies that boiled okra is even more keto-friendly than the raw version.

Can you have pickled okra on keto?

Another popular way to prepare okra is to pickle it. 100 grams of this contains the following amounts of carbs (4):

  • Total carbs: 11 grams
  • Of which fiber: 2.7 grams
  • Net carbs: 8.3 grams

Pickled okra is actually somewhat higher in carbs per 100 grams.

You can likely have small amounts of pickled okra on keto but it is generally not that good for this diet.

Is fried okra keto-friendly?

You can also bread okra and fry it. If you are somewhat experienced with keto diets you will likely know that this will shoot its carb count up.

100 grams of one example of fried okra contains the following amounts of carbs (5):

  • Total carbs: 22.4 grams
  • Of which fiber: 1.6 grams
  • Net carbs: 20.8 grams

As you can see, fried okra is often very high in carbs and in turn, not keto-friendly.

That being said, it is worth noting that there will also be more keto-friendly fried okra recipes that replace the breadcrumbs with low-carb alternatives.

You could take a look at these if you absolutely want to eat fried okra.

Substitutes for okra on keto

Okra is actually botanically a fruit but in the kitchen, you use it similarly to most vegetables. There are a variety of other vegetables and vegetable-like food options that are low in carbs.

You may prefer these low-carb vegetables over okra in terms of taste and/or nutrients and/or simply want to switch up the foods in your ketogenic diet.

The numbers next to these okra substitutes are the amounts of net carbs per 100 grams (6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11):

  • 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

Keep in mind that these okra substitutes still contain some amounts of carbs. To keep your diet keto you may still need to keep an eye on the amounts you eat.

Why do you want to stay in ketosis?

From the keto fundamentals, it should be clear that even small amounts of okra could increase your carb intake too much to stay in ketosis.

Whether or not this is a problem and to what extent depends on why you want to stay in ketosis.

There are people who need/want to stay in this state every minute of the day. These individuals want to pay a lot of attention to how much okra and other foods they eat.

On the other hand, okra can generally help you lose weight and get healthier even if it increases your carb intake too much to be keto.

Ketogenic diets can be helpful but they are likely not the only way you can achieve these health goals.


Is okra high in carbs?

Raw okra contains around 7.5 grams of carbohydrates (including 3.2 grams of fiber) per 100 grams. In turn, you can say that okra is relatively low in carbs.

How many net carbs are there in fried okra?

One example recipe of fried okra contains around 20.8 grams of net carbs per 100 grams.

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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.