When first starting a ketogenic diet, some of the articles about keto-friendly vegetables may scare you away. Since most keto meal plans call for low net carbs, you may wonder – can you eat broccoli on keto?
The good news is you can eat plenty of low-carb vegetables on keto, including broccoli. In fact, you should eat more keto recipes that include this keto superfood.
Keep reading to learn more about broccoli’s numerous health benefits, how much broccoli you can eat on keto, and which other low-carb veggies fit perfectly into your high fat diet. Plus, you’ll also learn my favorite way to cook broccoli, and I’ll link to my favorite low-carb diet approved broccoli recipes.
Health Benefits of Broccoli
Broccoli makes a great side dish on a keto diet since it’s a nutrient dense food that’s low in both calories and carbs. Raw broccoli is made up of nearly 90% water, 7% carbs, 3% protein, and close to 0% fat.
The high percentage of water content helps make broccoli more filling since it’s a bulky food that’s packed with nutrients. A great way to lose more weight on a low carb diet is to fill your diet with nutrient dense foods. That way you feel fuller longer, while eating less food overall.
Many health experts agree you should include plenty of green cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli, since they help reduce inflammation, improve blood sugar control, boost immunity, and promote heart health.
Broccoli also improves overall health since it’s rich in the following vitamins and minerals:
- Vitamin A
- B Vitamins like Vitamin B6 and B12
- Vitamin D
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin K
How Many Carbs in Broccoli?
Since you may be here with weight loss as your ultimate goal, I’m sure you want to know all about the total carbs. So does broccoli have carbs?
While the answer is yes, that doesn’t mean broccoli isn’t the perfect choice for a keto diet. Let’s talk about the macronutrient breakdown in a cup of broccoli to clarify why broccoli is keto friendly.
It’s important to note that the carb intake is different in a cup of raw broccoli vs. a cup of cooked broccoli. This is because you might cook off some of the excess water, depending on how you prepare keto vegetables.
How many carbs in raw broccoli?
A full cup serving of raw broccoli that’s chopped contains 6 total grams of carbs, which is 3.6 grams of net carbs when you remove the grams of fiber.
How many carbs in cooked broccoli?
A one cup serving of cooked broccoli has 9.8 total grams of carbs, which changes to only 4.3 grams of net carbs after subtracting the soluble fiber. This makes it a great addition to your low carb diet.
Is Broccoli a Carb?
If you were led to believe that you should remove this cruciferous superfood from your keto-friendly foods list because it has a high carb count, you were fed bad information.
While it’s true there are carbs in broccoli, keto dieters can rejoice since broccoli itself is not considered a carb.
As a keto rule of thumb, most vegetables grown above ground are generally low in carbs. The best vegetables with a low carb count includes:
- bell peppers
- brussels sprouts
- green beans
- iceberg lettuce
- leafy greens
- spaghetti squash
On the other hand – most vegetables grown below ground, also called root vegetables, often contain more carbs. This makes higher-carb vegetables, that also typically have a high starch content, less ideal for keto.
A few examples of vegetables with a higher carb content include:
- sweet potatoes
- white potatoes
The great thing about broccoli is it makes a great swap for higher-carb count veggies in recipes, like potatoes. Many keto dieters also swap a few cups of broccoli in place of rice or pasta.
Broccoli is extremely versatile since it can be steamed, fried in butter, drizzled in olive oil, covered in cheese sauce, roasted with bacon, and more.
Is Broccoli Keto Friendly?
Now it’s time for the big reveal! Can you eat broccoli on keto?
Broccoli is a great low-carb vegetable that fits well into a keto diet. This is especially true when you add healthy fats to your serving of broccoli. In fact, healthy fats are an essential component since they help bring out the essential nutrients in broccoli, including the fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K.
While broccoli’s carb content starts to add up when you eat larger quantities, the average person fills up on nutritious foods, like broccoli, well before the carbs start to matter. This is mostly due to the high water content, plus all of those nutrients we talked about in non-starchy vegetables.
Plus, broccoli is packed with fiber and micronutrients. Eating more whole foods like broccoli helps you feel amazing on a keto diet.
How Much Broccoli Can You Have on Keto?
Just because broccoli has a lower carb count, that doesn’t mean you can keep eating it – even after you feel stuffed. The amount of broccoli you can have on keto depends on how many other carbs you plan to eat in any given day.
Since a 1-cup serving of broccoli contains around 4.3g net carbs, most people can fit at least a serving size or two of broccoli into their day. If you really love broccoli, you can eat more – just lay low on non-veggie carbs since processed carbs add up much more quickly.
Learn how to track the keto macros that are right for you in a tracking app, like Cronometer. This will help you learn the amount of broccoli that’s right for you.
In order to get more of this good stuff in your keto diet, let’s talk about some frequently asked questions surrounding broccoli:
The best place to store broccoli is in the vegetable crisper. If there’s no room, you can also store it on a shelf in the back of your fridge.
In order to keep broccoli fresher for longer – mist unwashed heads of broccoli, and then wrap loosely with paper towels.
How long does broccoli last in the fridge? If stored properly, fresh broccoli can last up to a week or more in the fridge. However, if you don’t plan to use broccoli within 2-3 days, it’s best to cut broccoli into small pieces, blanch it, and store it in the freezer.
How long does cooked broccoli last in the fridge? Cooked broccoli lasts 3-5 days when properly stored. You can freeze it in an airtight container to extend the shelf life of cooked broccoli.
How long does frozen broccoli last? Frozen broccoli should taste fresh and be free of freezer burn up to 6-8 months. Store frozen broccoli in a resealable freezer bag or other freezer-safe container.
Fresh broccoli florets should remain a bright, uniform green. When you notice brown or yellow spots, that’s a sign your broccoli is starting to spoil and should be used ASAP.
Next time you see fuzzy white or black spots on your broccoli, throw it out as these are signs of mold.
The temperature at which you choose to roast broccoli may depend on the main dish that’s also in the oven. Of course, it also depends on your oven, since cooking times vary with different cooking equipment.
While you can roast broccoli at higher temperatures, keep an eye on it as it can burn quickly. Here’s an approximate guideline on how long to roast broccoli at different temperatures:
How long to roast broccoli at 350 degrees F: 25-30 minutes
How long to roast broccoli at 400 degrees F: 20-25 minutes
How long to roast broccoli at 425 degrees F: 15-18 minutes
To season, add frozen broccoli to a large bowl. Drizzle with olive, avocado or coconut oil, and then top with your favorite spices. Toss until well combined. Some great spices to season broccoli include salt, black pepper, garlic powder, paprika, and cumin.
There are plenty of ways to enjoy broccoli on a keto diet.
If you’re in search of a broccoli steak recipe, this garlic steak stir fry is perfect. You can also easily replace high carb noodles with chicken Alfredo with broccoli recipes. If you’re looking for a broccoli slaw recipe keto approved, chicken egg roll in a bowl is your dish!
My absolute favorite is this broccoli cheddar chicken recipe with bacon.
Yes! And they have so many uses. Check out this article so you quit throwing out leftover broccoli stems.
Is Broccoli Keto? The Wrap Up:
In case you skipped to the end, the grand conclusion is – YES, you can and should include broccoli in a keto diet.
And if you made it to the end by chance, scroll back up to learn all of the keto friendly broccoli facts you need to know so that you’re inspired to add more of this keto powerhouse to your plan.
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Can You Eat Broccoli on Keto?