When starting the keto diet it can be difficult to figure out which vegetables are keto-friendly because some are more carb heavy than others. Eggplant is one which causes some confusion amongst keto diet enthusiasts with many unsure if and how it can be incorporated into a keto diet.
Is eggplant keto? Eggplant is great vegetable to incorporate into your keto diet, because it is lower in natural sugars and higher in fiber, two factors which reduce its carb content. Eggplant is non starchy vegetable, with its composition over 90% water and containing 6 grams of carbs and 3g of fiber per 100g of raw vegetable weight. This makes eggplant a vegetable you can eat in higher volumes to help keep you feeling full and as well as keeping you regular, all without pushing your carb levels too high.
With that said, the amount of eggplant you consume should be considered in the context of your overall carb intake for the day because if you are looking to keep your net carbs (carbs less fiber) around the prescribed keto amount of 25-30 grams, eggplant in high volumes may account for a large chunk. If you’re looking to incorporate more eggplant pair it with another non starchy vegetable like zucchini or leafy greens and round it out with some protein and healthy fats, for a complete keto friendly meal.
How Many Carbs Are In An Eggplant
Eggplant contains roughly 6 grams of carbs per 100g of raw vegetable weight. Of its 6 grams of carbs 3 grams are from fiber. For a strict keto diet, guidelines suggests that net carbs should be around 25-30 grams per day. Net carbs are carbs less fiber. The average eggplant including its skin weighs around 500g, which is about 30 grams of carbs and 15 grams of fiber, making its net carb value 15 grams.
Given, total net carbs of an average eggplant may equate to half of your daily net carbs, it is important to consider how to best fit the eggplant into your diet to ensure it is aligned to your nutritional goals.
How To Eat Eggplant On The Keto Diet
If you wondering how best to eat eggplant when you’re on keto, start with these principles to help guide your food planning.
- Incorporating eggplant along with lower carb vegetable varieties like zucchini, leafy greens, spinach and mushrooms.
- Keeping your total vegetable weight for main meals between 200-300g and half that for snacks or lighter meals.
- Spreading your serves of eggplant out across the day.
- Pairing you eggplant with protein dense and higher fat foods instead of more carbs.
In adopting these principles, it can help you moderate your vegetable intake so it remains in line with the keto net carb goal.
Keto Recipes With Eggplant
With eggplant being both keto friendly and versatile, many people on keto have already let their creativity loose and come up with delicious keto friendly recipes to assist with you incorporating eggplant in your diet. Here are few favorites for you to try:
- This amazing eggplant parmesan recipe from headbangerskitchen.com. The eggplant is paired with many other keto-friendly foods like parmesan cheese.
- This Crispy Fried Eggplant Recipe from lowcarbmaven.com. In this recipe, the eggplant is coated with pork rinds, parmesan cheese, and olive oil.
- This mini eggplant pizza recipe from wholesumyum.com. This is an eggplant pizza with high fat cheese and olives paired with the eggplant as your base.
What makes these eggplant recipes suitable for keto is that eggplant is used to enhance the protein or fat being used in the meal and very few other carb sources are used with it. This helps keep the overall meal balance higher in protein and fat and lower in carb.
Other Healthy Benefits of Eggplant If You’re On Keto
As well as eggplant being a great low carb option to help build out keto friendly meals, you can also expect it to provide you with an array of other benefits to support your nutrition and health:
- It’s low in both calories and carbs, so it is unlikely to be the cause of you over eating on either.
- It’s an excellent source of dietary fiber, which helps you feel fuller longer.
- It’s an excellent source of essential vitamins and minerals, to help with overall body processes and functions.
- It’s high in disease-fighting antioxidants and other anti-inflammatory compounds, aiding in long term good health.
- It can be used in a wide variety of tasty low carb recipes (casserole dishes, stuffed eggplant, oven roasted eggplant, salad etc.) ensuring variety in your diet and meals.
Keto Alternatives for Eggplant
If you’re not quite sold on eggplant, there are a few other vegetable alternatives which are similar in texture and nutrient composition, making them easily substituted in many of the eggplant recipes you might come across. These include:
- Summer Squash; and
- Portobello Mushrooms.
When looking to incorporate eggplant or these alternatives, be sure to consider how they impact your net carb intake across the day to assist in determining how best to consume them and in what quantities.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the net carbs in eggplant?
The carb to fiber ratio for eggplants is 50:50. For example in 200g of raw eggplant, there is 12 grams of carbs and 6 grams of fiber. To determine the net carbs you subtract the fiber from the carbs total. In this example you deduct 6 grams of fiber from 12 grams of carbs, leaving you with 6 grams of net carbs.
Is fried eggplant keto?
Fried eggplant is a great way to make your eggplant keto friendly, because you are incorporating it with a large serving of fat. Many fried eggplant recipes suggest using ground pork rinds and eggs to coat your eggplant and upwards of 2 tablespoons of olive oil to fry it. This keeps the composition of your eggplant more protein and fat dense and lower in carb, may it a workable keto meal solution.
Are eggplants ketogenic?
Eggplants themselves are not ketogenic. Ketogenic refer to a lower carb diet. Eggplants are a non starchy vegetable with containing 6 grams of carb per 100g of raw weight. With eggplants being lower in carb they can be incorporated into your diet plan to assist in building lower carb meals to then maintain a lower carb diet overall.
Are eggplant chips keto?
Eggplant chips are fun way to not only make use of eggplant, but enjoy lower carb twist on chips or wedges, while following a keto diet. Eggplant chips are typically are cut up to look like chips, coated with eggs and almond flour or pork rinds and then deep fried in oil, making them a big source of fat. Eggplant is much lower in carbs than potatoes, containing 6 grams of carbs per 100 grams raw vegetable weight compared to potatoes which have 17 grams of carbs per 100 grams of raw vegetable weight. So if you are going to have chip on keto, make them eggplant.
Is thai eggplant keto friendly?
Thai eggplant is keto-friendly. Thai eggplant is a rarer type of eggplant to find, however, it has a like for like nutritional composition to the eggplant variety you would commonly find in your grocery store. Thai eggplant has 6 grams of carbs per 100g of raw vegetable weight and roughly 3 grams of fiber, just like regular eggplant. It has a different flavor to it though and may not always work as a common eggplant substitute.
On keto, guidelines suggest that 70-75% of your calories come from fat, 20-25% from protein, and 5-10% or fewer from carbs. When on a keto diet it is important to monitor your portions ensuring you eat within your daily carb limits. So, when incorporating eggplant as long as you’re mindful of your meal composition and your carb consumption across the day, this should be a complimentary addition to your diet.