Are Bean Sprouts Keto Friendly? You may be Surprised!

  • Author: Katie
  • Date: October 9, 2022
  • Time to Read: 5 min.

Bean sprouts, also known as mung beans or mung bean sprouts are popular in Asian cooking, but are these bean sprouts keto friendly? SPOILER ALERT: Yes, they are! Read on to find out about some of the amazing health benefits of this humble bean, the nutritional value, and some of our favorite serving suggestions.

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A Refresh on the Principles of Keto

If you have been eating keto for any time you will know the whole focus of a keto diet is to keep your macros to 70% Fat, 25% Protein, and 5% Carbohydrates (Carbs).

This 5% of carbs should not exceed 20 grams for a traditional keto diet. Depending on whether you are doing lazy, dirty, or strict (aka clean) keto, will depend on how and whether you track these macros.

In order to keep your carb content under 20 grams, you need to be conscious of what you are eating and stick to low carbs foods. Whether you are eating lazy, dirty, or strict keto will depend on whether you are concerned with the quality of the foods that you are eating.

These low-carb foods also need to be low on the glycemic index (GI). If they are not low on the GI they may spike your blood sugar and knock you out of ketosis.

If keto is new to you, why not check out our Keto Starters Guide which should take you through everything you need to know.

Also, if you’re new to the keto community, why not check out our keto terms and keto abbreviations guides, they will make your life easier.

Now, let’s get into the detail and answer the question, Are Bean Sprouts Keto?

Nutritional Value of Bean Sprouts

There are a number of different types of bean sprouts;

  • Kidney bean sprouts
  • Lentil sprouts
  • Pea sprouts
  • Chickpea sprouts
  • Soybean sprouts
  • Adzuki bean sprouts

All of these barring kidney bean sprouts and soybean sprouts are very high in carbs and should be avoided for a keto WOE.

Please do not get these confused, especially if you are ordering in a restaurant. For the purpose of this article, we are only discussing mung bean sprouts aka bean sprouts.

The nutritional values of bean sprouts per 100 grams are; 

  • Carbs:  6 grams.
  • Protein:  3 grams.
  • Fat:  0 grams.
  • Fiber:  2 grams.
  • Sugar:  4 grams.
  • Calories:  31 cal

As you can see, bean sprouts are low fat, protein, and relatively low carb count.

Can You Eat Bean Sprouts On Keto

Net Carbs In Bean Sprouts?

Net carbs are calculated by deducting the amount of fiber from the total number of carbs.

There are 4 grams of net carbs in bean sprouts; (6 grams of carbs – 2 grams of fiber = 4 grams of net carbs).

As discussed above, if you are eating a traditional keto diet, your aim is to stay below 20 grams of carbs in a day.

An average serving is around 50-60 grams, which would be around 2 net carbs per serving, this should be easy to fit within your daily carb limit.

Where Do Bean Sprouts Sit On The Glycemic Index (GI)?

No testing has been done on bean sprouts to give an indication as to where they site on the glycemic index, however, it is believed to be quite low due to how few carbohydrates are in them.

From a keto perspective, this is a good thing as they are unlikely to spike blood sugar levels.

Health Benefits Of Bean Sprouts

For such a humble vegetable, bean sprouts have no end of health benefits.

We have listed some of these for you below;

  • High in antioxidants– may help reduce the risk of numerous diseases including caner
  • High in vitamin C – repair of tissue
  • Great source of insoluble dietary fiber – aids digestion.
  • Proteins and peptides– may help reduce the risk of cancer.
  • Balancing Cholesterol – heps heart health

There are plenty of health benefits to bean sprouts, now let’s see if they can fit within your diet?

So, Are Bean Sprouts Keto Friendly?

Bean sprouts are not zero carbs, but they are relatively low in carbs and are full of health benefits, so yes, bean sprouts are keto-friendly!

The only negative side to bean sprouts for a keto diet is that they are low in fat. Normally we would advocate eating low-carb, high-fat foods.

However, if you are using these to add flavor and crunch to your favorite Asian cuisine or salad, go ahead.

Check out our guide to eating Chinese on keto if you are looking for some Asian keto inspiration.

Is It Ok To Eat Bean Sprouts On A Low Carb diet?

Yes! Bean sprouts are perfect for a low-carb diet.

As a low-carb diet does not focus on the number of grams of protein or fat that you are eating, bean sprouts are great as you get a lot of food for your carb count!

Keto Bean Sprout Recipes

This is a difficult one as there are so many amazing dishes out there that bean sporuts can become part of. Why not so a stir fry using our cauliflower rice recipe? Or as a side to this sweet & spicy pork belly?

Do you have a bean sprout keto dish? Share it with us all in the comments below. ???

Growing Your Own Bean Sprouts

If you are looking for ways to keep costs down on a keto or low-carb diet, why not try to grow your own bean sprouts?

They are really easy to do and you do not need any specialist equipment.

The best bit?

They grow really quickly, so if you’re impatient (like me!), or have children, they can be great as you can quickly see their progress.

Keto Vegetables

Now we have established that you can eat bean sprouts on keto, why not check out some of these more, keto-friendly vegetables?

  • Asparagus: 2.5 grams of net carbs per 100 grams
  • Broccoli: contains 4 grams of net carbs per cup per 100 grams
  • Brussels Sprouts: 5 grams of net carbs per 100 grams
  • Cabbage: 4 grams of net carbs per 100 grams
  • Carrots: 7 grams of net carbs per 100 grams
  • Cauliflower: contains 3 grams of net carbs per cup 100 grams
  • Celery: contains 1.5 grams of net carbs per 100 grams
  • Courgette: 3.5 grams of net carbs per 100 grams
  • Green Beans: 5 grams of net carbs per 100 grams

Surprising ‘Healthy’ Foods That You Cannot Eat On The Keto Diet 

Before I ‘went keto’, I had what I thought was a very healthy diet, eating a lot of low fat, low calorie, ‘healthy’ foods. Looking back, these were all low-fat, low-calorie, but they are all surprisingly high in carbs.

I was constantly hungry, had very little energy and struggled to sleep and concentrate. Now I don’t worry about any of these! Check out the Top 10 Benefits of Keto here.

Looking back, there was no wonder that I exercised constantly, ate relatively little, and never lost weight!

Foods You Should Not Eat On Keto

  • Low-fat Yoghurt
  • Oranges
  • Apples
  • Quinoa
  • Granola (check out our keto-friendly version!)
  • Black Beans
  • Polenta
  • Chickpeas
  • Wholegrain Rice
  • Sweet Potato

For years, I had been eating all of the above, thinking that I was being healthy and feeding my body all of the ‘good’ stuff, all whole foods, how wrong was I?

For other keto facts and keto myths busted, check out this article!

Conclusion: Are Bean Sprouts Keto Friendly?

Yes, these amazing, understated vegetables are very much keto-friendly. Toss them into your stir fry or get creative with them Just remember that they are not going to help you get towards your fat goals, so try and pair them with a nice, fat-rich meal!

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