Are Beans Allowed On The Keto Diet?

We've got news for you.

Isadora Baum & Kelleigh Korevaar |

If you’re on keto, then you know that the high-fat diet requires you to restrict your net carb intake to 50 grams or fewer. It’s pretty clear that pasta, bread, and other delicious baked goods are now off-limits, but other high-carb foods aren’t quite so obvious.

Related: Thinking Of Trying The Ketogenic Diet? Here’s What Keto Beginners Should Know

Even though many high-carb foods are packed with nutrients, they may be a no-go for keto dieters – which can be confusing! Take beans, for example. They’re good for your heart, and they boost brain power.

But Are Beans Keto?

Well, we don’t really have good news for you. If you’re on the keto diet, beans probably aren’t going to fly.

“Although they have a ton of fibre which is great for supporting gut health, the high starch content in just 1 cup of chickpeas [or other beans] exceeds the total amount of carbs a keto dieter can have in an entire day,” says registered dietician and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics,Julie Stefanski.

Related: Paleo vs. Keto Diet: Which Low-Carb Diet Is Right for You?

You can expect a 1/2 cup of beans to have 20-something grams of net carbs. Black beans have 24 grams and chickpeas have 28 grams, for example. Even if you halve it, you’re still eating plenty of carbs from one source of food in a sitting, and that’s excluding whatever else you’re pairing those beans with. So think about it: would you really want to spend about half of your daily net carb amount on a ½ cup of beans? Or might you want to spread those babies out elsewhere?

What Can I Replace Them With?

If you’re unsure of what cupboard-friendly foods are also keto-friendly, we’ve got you covered. Add these 6 stables so you stay in ketosis without starving.

1. Eggs

If you’re on the keto diet you’re bound to eat a lot of eggs. Everyone’s favourite? Boiled. Investing in a good egg rack so you can keep your meal-prepped boiled eggs from your fresh eggs is a must. We’re big fans of the KitchenCraft Natural Elements Acacia Wood Egg Rack (Buy It Here).

2. Low-Carb Veggies

Low-carb diets have given us many things, but the ‘invention’ of zoodles is one we think deserves awards. Between butternut and zucchini zoodles, spiralized noodles can form the basis of some really tasty low-carb meals. Our favourite spiralizer? The Morphy Richards Spiralizer Express (Buy It Here).

3. Oil

You get to choose between both olive oil and coconut oil, luckily. According to a study, coconut oil may help obese people lose weight and belly fat. This may be because coconut oil is rich in MCTs which can increase ketone production. Try to always stick to organic coconut oil (Buy It Here). Add olive oil (Buy It Here) as it’s great for mayonnaise, adding to cooked foods and when making salad dressing.

Related: The 15 Best Keto Breakfast Ideas to Power Up Your Morning

4. Shirataki Noodles

These noodles are a great addition to any keto-dieters pantry. They contain less than 1 gram of carbs per serving, seriously. Plus, the viscous fibre these noodles are made from promotes fullness and stable blood sugar labels. Try these lasagne sheets made out of shirataki noodles (Buy It Here).

6. Dark Chocolate

High in antioxidants and only 3 – 10 grams of carbs per 28 grams, dark chocolate is the perfect sweet treat. CocoaFair’s 85% ultra-smooth, extra-dark chocolate is full of creamy organic cocoa butter, and the chocolate has been ethically sourced and produced, using the finest certified organic and fair traded ingredients (Buy It Here).

7. Coffee And Tea

When unsweetened, coffee and tea have no carbs and they’re known to increase your metabolic rate and physical and mental performance. For organic beans, Baseline’s Organic Single Origin Coffee Beans are a must (Buy It Here). And for tea, try the Mandela Organic Honeybush & Rooibos Tea (Buy It Here).

Related: 6 Reasons Why You Should Be Drinking Rooibos Tea This Winter

The Bottom Line About Beans and Keto?

For guys following sensible diets, there’s nothing wrong with including higher-carb foods in your diet—in fact, it’s a good idea to do so! But if you’re on the keto diet, know that you can’t eat beans and stay in ketosis. You’ve got to pick your priority. If you’re a keto fan and aren’t ready to give it up, then it’s time to part ways with that can of beans until you’ve switched to another eating plan.

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