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Are Macadamia Nuts Keto-Friendly?

Macadamia Nuts on a kitchen counter

Are Macadamia Nuts Keto-Friendly? The short answer is no, due to their high carbohydrate content.

For those following a ketogenic diet, the inclusion of these nuts can pose a real challenge.

The high carb content can push a keto dieter over their daily carb limit and possibly disrupt the state of ketosis, a crucial aspect of the ketogenic diet.


  • Are Macadamia Nuts Keto-friendly? Unfortunately not - their high carbohydrate content can hinder you from staying in ketosis.
  • With a significant 16.53g of carbs per 100g and 4.96g of net carbs in a typical 30g serving, Macadamia Nuts pose a real challenge for keto dieters.
  • Despite their nutritional benefits, such as high levels of healthy fats and essential minerals, the high carb content in Macadamia Nuts is a downside for those on a keto diet.

Are Macadamia Nuts Keto-Friendly?

When questioned, "Are Macadamia Nuts Keto-Friendly?", the straightforward answer is no, they are not. This conclusion is grounded on the nutritional composition of these nuts. Specifically, it's the carbohydrate content that sets the tone for this verdict.

Macadamia Nuts contain a substantial amount of carbohydrates, with as much as 16.53g present in every 100g. This is a significant amount, especially considering the strict carb limits of a ketogenic diet. Typically, people on a ketogenic diet aim to keep their carb intake below 20g to 50g per day, which makes these nuts a hefty contributor to the daily carb quota.

Can You Have Macadamia Nuts On a Strict Keto Diet?

Adhering to a strict ketogenic diet means keeping daily carb intake to less than 20g. Under such limitations, incorporating Macadamia Nuts into the diet plan becomes challenging, primarily due to their high carbohydrate content. Even a 30g serving of Macadamia Nuts contributes approximately 4.96g net carbs, which is a significant portion of the daily carb allowance on a strict keto diet.

There are individuals who follow a more liberal form of the ketogenic diet or a low-carb diet, limiting their daily net carbs to 30-50g. Even in these cases, the inclusion of Macadamia Nuts should be approached with caution, given their substantial carb content.

Carbs In Macadamia Nuts

The carbohydrate content of Macadamia Nuts is something to consider, particularly for individuals following a ketogenic or low-carb diet. A closer look at these nuts reveals that they contain 16.53g of carbohydrates per 100g. This is a notable amount, especially considering the restricted carb allowances characteristic of such diets.

Focusing on a typical serving size, a 30g portion of Macadamia Nuts carries around 4.96g of net carbs. Net carbs refer to the total carbohydrates minus the fiber content, and it is this value that is often monitored in low-carb diets, as these are the carbs that the body can readily use for energy.

Macadamia Nuts Nutrition Facts

Macadamia nuts are a nutrient-dense food, offering a wealth of macro and micronutrients per 100g serving. These nuts are particularly high in total fats, providing 64.93g per portion. Most of these fats are monounsaturated fats, which are known to be heart-healthy.

Carbohydrates are present too, but at a much lower level, with net carbs accounting for 16.53g and total carbohydrates at 24.09g. They also offer a decent amount of dietary fiber, roughly 7.56g, which aids in digestion.

Protein content in macadamia nuts is not to be overlooked, with each 100g serving contributing 7.79g. This makes them a good supplement for protein intake, especially for those following vegetarian or vegan diets.

On the micronutrient front, macadamia nuts offer a range of essential minerals. They are a rich source of Magnesium (106.8mg), critical for muscle and nerve function, and Calcium (52.71mg), necessary for bone health. There's also a noteworthy presence of Potassium (372.6mg), which helps regulate fluid balance and nerve signals.

The elements like Copper (0.45mg), Iron (1.88mg), and Zinc (1.2mg), found in these nuts, play vital roles in multiple body functions, ranging from blood cell production to immune response. Particularly impressive is the Manganese content (11.3mg), which aids in metabolism and bone development.

Other minor but essential nutrients present include Phosphorus (208.4mg), Selenium (32.62ug), and Nitrogen (1.47g), each contributing to different aspects of health. Even the humble water content, around 1.83g, is crucial for hydration and body functions.

Nutrient NameAmount and Unit per 100g
Net Carbs 16.53g
Carbohydrate, by difference 24.09g
Fiber, total dietary 7.56g
Total fats 64.93g
Protein 7.79g
Potassium, K 372.6mg
Magnesium, Mg 106.8mg
Calcium, Ca 52.71mg
Copper, Cu 0.45mg
Iron, Fe 1.88mg
Phosphorus, P 208.4mg
Selenium, Se 32.62ug
Zinc, Zn 1.2mg
Nitrogen 1.47g
Manganese, Mn 11.3mg
Water 1.83g
Nutritional data is sourced from the US Department of Agriculture's FoodData Central system. Please see Cast Iron Keto's editorial and research standards for more information.

Health Implications of Macadamia Nuts on a Keto Diet

Incorporating Macadamia Nuts into a ketogenic diet presents certain challenges, particularly with maintaining a state of ketosis. The high carbohydrate content of these nuts can easily push a person over their daily carb allowance, potentially knocking them out of ketosis.

However, on the positive side, Macadamia Nuts are a rich source of numerous nutrients. They contain high levels of healthy fats, specifically 64.93g per 100g, and are a good source of protein, with 7.79g per 100g. Further, they provide essential minerals such as potassium, magnesium, and calcium, and trace elements like copper, iron, and manganese. These nuts also offer dietary fiber and a range of vitamins, contributing to overall health.

Keto-Compatible Alternatives for Macadamia Nuts

Given that Macadamia Nuts are not keto-friendly, here are a few alternatives that could be considered:

  1. Pecans: With only 1.2g of net carbs per 30g serving, pecans are a fantastic low-carb option. They're also high in healthy fats, making them great for keto recipes. For example, they can be used in baking or as a crunchy salad topping.
  2. Brazil Nuts: These nuts have a similar texture to Macadamia Nuts and contain 1.4g net carbs per 30g serving. Brazil Nuts are a rich source of selenium and can be used in keto-friendly meals like stir-fries or simply as a snack.
  3. Walnuts: Offering 2g net carbs per 30g serving, walnuts are another keto-compatible substitute. High in Omega-3 fatty acids, they can be used in a variety of dishes from keto bread to salads.
  4. Almonds: Almonds have 2.6g net carbs per 30g serving and are packed with nutrients like Vitamin E and magnesium. They're versatile and can be included in keto diet plans through almond butter or almond flour in baking recipes.

Concluding Thoughts on Macadamia Nuts and Keto

When it comes to incorporating Macadamia Nuts into a ketogenic diet, the verdict is clear: their high carb content makes them a challenging fit. With as much as 16.53g of carbs per 100g and around 4.96g net carbs in a typical 30g serving, they can easily push a keto dieter over their daily carb allowance, which can cause disruptions in maintaining a state of ketosis.

That being said, it's important to acknowledge the nutritional attributes of Macadamia Nuts. They are high in healthy fats and provide a good dose of dietary fiber and protein. They also contain essential minerals and vitamins, contributing to a healthy diet outside the realm of keto. However, if you're following a strict ketogenic diet, their high carb content can't be overlooked.

Experimenting with alternatives can lead to delightful discoveries. Pecans, Brazil Nuts, Walnuts, and Almonds are just a few keto-friendly substitutes that align much better with the carb restrictions of a ketogenic diet. They each bring their unique flavors and nutritional benefits to the table, providing variety and keeping meals interesting.

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Cast Iron Keto's Editorial and Research Standards

Certain rare or exotic food items may not have nutritional profiles in the FoodData Central database. If an exact match is not found in the FoodData Central database, then, the Cast Iron Keto team utilizes a three-prong approach to provide readers with the closest relevant nutritional data, where possible.

First, in the event that nutritional profiles for a rare or exotic food item is not available in the FoodData Central database, we investigate alternative names for that particular food item and use that data, when possible. Second, in cases where no alternate names exist, Cast Iron Keto will use nutritional data for a close relative or similar food item. Finally, if no close relatives or similar items exist, we refrain from publishing nutrient data tables.

When making dietary or health decisions based on FoodData Central's data, we suggest readers consult with a nutritionist or other health experts, particularly if the food in question has a significant role in your diet or if you are using the food item to treat any health disorder(s).

Furthermore, it is important to note that even if a close relative or similar item is used to approximate the nutritional data, different food items can have varying levels of nutrients due to factors such as soil quality, farming practices, and regional differences.


The information on this website is only intended to be general summary information for public use, designed for educational purposes only and is not engaged in rendering medical advice or professional services. This information does not replace written law or regulations, nor does it replace professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have questions about a medical condition or are seeking to evaluate the health merits of certain food items for the treatment of any medical condition, you should seek the advice of a doctor or other qualified health professionals.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Due to their high carbohydrate content of 16.53g per 100g, Macadamia Nuts can easily exceed the daily carb limit for someone following a ketogenic diet, disrupting the state of ketosis.