We have had an in-depth discussion of the keto diet and how we need to keep our carb counts low. It has also been mentioned times without a number of the types of foods to consume on low-carb diets to stay within the recommended carb limit. Foods like nuts and seeds, high-quality animal-based proteins, high-fat dairy products, and non-starchy vegetables are what fit into the low-carb lifestyle.
Today, we will focus on a specific veggie that shines in too many of your low-carb recipes. Cabbage is a very versatile ingredient to the extent that it can fit into your financial and net carb budget. What should you expect to know by the end of this read? The number of net carbs in cabbage. You will also get a chance to compare the net carbs in different cabbages. Let’s dive into it!
Net Carbs in Cabbage
Cabbage is from the cruciferous vegetable family, a close sibling to broccoli and Brussels sprouts. Before we look into the carb count numbers, let’s take a look at the types of cabbage in your kitchen. This way you will know which one best fits the type of ketogenic diet you follow.
Types of Cabbage
Here are the varieties of this low-carb veggie you can choose from:
This is the most popular type of low-carb vegetable. The head of cabbage is densely packed with thick leaves, with the outer covers being a medium to light shade of green.
These come in color shades ranging from deep red to deep purple. This can also be purple cabbage. The natural red pigment (anthocyanins) are antioxidants that help prevent cardiovascular diseases like high blood pressure. When you cut the head of cabbage, the tightly packed leaves with white leaves have a marbling effect.
White Cabbage/ Dutch Cabbage
This variety of has pale-colored leaves. Due to exposure to the sun, the outer leaves are usually a pale green, and the inner leaves are white and tightly packed in the center.
Chinese Cabbage/ Napa Cabbage
This classifies as Chinese cabbage and has an oblong shape. They have a thick crunchy stem and pale green and yellow leaves. They are often used in soups, stir-fries, and stews.
This is a type of green cabbage whose leaves are crinkly and bluish-green leaves. It is smaller than regular cabbages, has a milder taste, and is more tender.
Bok Choy is also a Chinese variety but with white and green leaves that are tender. Unlike the Napa cabbage, this variety does not form a head of cabbage. Dark green leaves grow from a white bulb-like base.
The less common types are Portuguese cabbage, January King cabbage, Tuscan cabbage, and Parel cabbage.
Is Cabbage Keto-friendly?
The low-carb or keto diet limits intake to 25-50 grams of net carbs per day. Net carbs are the number of digestible carbs that can be absorbed into your bloodstream and impact blood sugar levels. To get net carbs (non-fiber carbs), you will subtract grams of fiber from the total carb count.
How many carbs does cabbage have and do you stay within your carb allowance after consuming this keto-friendly vegetable? Cabbage is one of the keto-friendly green vegetables. What do the numbers say?
Net Carbs Cabbage
According to the USDA, 100 g of raw cabbage (green) contains:
- Energy: 31 kcals
- Totals carbohydrate: 6.38 grams of carbs
- Dietary fiber: 2.5 grams of carbs
- Net carbs: 3.88 grams of carbs
- Protein: 0.96 grams of protein
- Fat: 0.23 grams of fat
Numbers never lie, right? The net carbs in cabbage are low enough for it to qualify as a keto food. A cup of shredded cabbage contains 8.3 grams carbs, 2.9 grams fiber, and 4.2 grams sugar. They contain 5.4 grams net carbs per cup serving, which still counts as keto.
Is Cooked Cabbage Keto-friendly?
What happens to the carb count of this vegetable when cooked? In 100 g of cooked cabbage (boiled) you will get:
- Energy: 23 kcals
- Total carbohydrates: 5.51 grams of carbs
- Dietary fiber: 1.9 grams of fiber
- Net carbs: 3.61 grams of carbs
- Sugar: 2.79 grams of sugar
- Protein: 1.27 grams of protein
- Fat: 0.06 grams of fat
Taking a look at the grams of carbohydrates in cabbage after boiling, they are lower than those of the raw cabbage. This means, cooked cabbage is keto-friendly
Is Fried Cabbage Keto-friendly?
Cabbage on its own is low in fat. Since the keto diet demands a higher fat intake, frying cabbage in healthy oils may have additional health benefits for the body. However, how many net carbs in cabbage if fried with healthy oils like coconut oil and extra virgin olive oil?
In a 100 g serving of cabbage (fried) you will get:
- Energy: 78 kcals
- Total carbs: 5.6 grams carbs
- Fiber: 1.8 grams fiber
- Net carbs: 3.8 grams net carbs
- Protein: 2 grams protein
- Fat: 5.8 grams fat
Choosing the right fat and oils when cooking is necessary to promote heart health. The fried kind is keto.
Is White Cabbage Keto?
How many grams per cup of carbs does white cabbage contain? One shredded cup of cabbage contains 2 grams of net carbs. This variety has similar calories and carb count as the green variety.
Is Purple Cabbage Keto-friendly?
The red cabbage is keto just like the other varieties. In 100 g of raw red cabbage, you will get:
- Energy: 34 kcals
- Total carbs: 7.4 grams carbs
- Fiber: 2.1 grams fiber
- Net carbs: 5.3 grams net carbs
- Protein: 1.24 grams protein
- Fat: 0.2 grams fat
It contains 10 grams of carbs, 3.9 grams of fiber, and 6.1 grams of net carbs per cup of shredded cabbage. Boiled red cabbage will provide you with 6.94 grams of total carbs, 2.6 grams of fiber, and 4.34 grams of net carbs.
How Much Cabbage to Eat on Keto
A cup serving of cabbage contains around 3 grams of net carbs. The vegetable is low in carbs, and calories and high in fiber so it would be a better pick than other veggies like root veggies with a boatload of carbs. You can consume as much as you want without worrying about your blood glucose and insulin.
Is Cabbage Better for You Cooked or Raw?
Eating it raw is beneficial since it reduces nutrient losses brought about by cooking. A study done to investigate the effects of domestic cooking methods on the nutritional quality of cabbage showed that cooking lowered the anthocyanin and total glucosinolates contents of cabbage.
Steaming led to greater retention of vitamin C and DPPH-radical scavenging activity. Boiling and stir-frying led to losses of total phenolic, vitamin C, and antioxidants. Eating cabbage raw maintains the highest nutrition. Cook for a shorter period and use less water when cooking to maintain the nutritional quality of your veggies.
How Healthy Is Boiled Cabbage?
Although raw cabbage is more nutritious, boiled cabbage has the following impressive health benefits:
Benefits of Cabbage
- It is packed with beneficial nutrients like vitamin A, iron, riboflavin, vitamin B6, folate, fiber, and vitamin C.
- Can help lower chronic inflammation. The vegetable contains antioxidants like sulforaphane and kaempferol that can fight against inflammation. Research has shown that consuming veggies from the cruciferous family has been associated with lower levels of inflammation.
- Rich source of vitamin C, a water-soluble vitamin, involved in collagen formation, and iron absorption. This nutrient has anticancer and anti-inflammatory properties to prevent chronic diseases.
- Good for promoting gut health since it is a good source of fiber, a probiotic that adds bulk to stool and promotes bowel movement.
- Red cabbage contains the antioxidant anthocyanin which promotes heart health.
- Rich source of potassium which plays a role in controlling blood pressure.
- Good source of vitamin K, especially vitamin K1 which is crucial for blood clotting.
How many net carbs in cabbage? Its net carbs range between 2-5 grams depending on the cooking method. No matter the variety or how you cook it, it is keto. Thanks to its versatility, you can have steamed cabbage, roasted cabbage, stir-fried cabbage, whatever floats your boat!
Do you prefer it cooked or raw? Which type of makes the most appearance in your kitchen? We’d love to know!