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Is Cabbage Keto-Friendly?

Cabbage on a kitchen counter

Is Cabbage Keto-Friendly? The resounding answer is yes! We'll delve deeper into the low-carb profile of cabbage, a versatile and nutrient-packed vegetable that fits seamlessly into a ketogenic lifestyle.

From understanding its net carbs to exploring various delicious ways to include cabbage in your keto meal plan, we'll also shed light on its nutritional benefits.

By the end of this article, you'll have all the insights you need to maximize the potential of this humble yet powerful vegetable in your everyday keto meals.

So, let's 'leaf' through it together!


  • Yes, cabbage is indeed keto-friendly due to its low net carb content.
  • It's not just a low-carb option, but also a powerhouse of vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber.
  • Inclusive in a variety of keto recipes, cabbage brings versatility to your meal plan.

Is Cabbage Keto-Friendly?

Yes, cabbage is keto-friendly. Its nutritional profile indicates that it contains a mere 3.3g net carbs per 100g, making it a suitable food for those following a ketogenic diet.

The primary reason cabbage is considered keto-friendly is due to its low net carbohydrate content. Net carbs are calculated by subtracting fiber from total carbs, which in the case of cabbage, results in a meager 3.3g per 100g serving. This value is significantly low, allowing individuals on a ketogenic diet to include cabbage in their meal plans without exceeding their daily carbohydrate limit.

Can You Have Cabbage on a Strict Keto Diet?

Indeed, cabbage can be included in a strict ketogenic diet. As previously mentioned, cabbage has a low net carbohydrate content of 3.3g per 100g serving, making it a suitable choice even for the most stringent keto follower.

A strict ketogenic diet typically involves limiting your daily net carbohydrate intake to less than 20g. Given the low net carb content of cabbage, it fits comfortably into this dietary restriction. Even for those individuals who adopt a slightly less strict approach, limiting their net carbs to somewhere between 30-50g per day, cabbage still fits well within this range.

Carbs In Cabbage

Cabbage contains 3.3g of net carbs per 100g serving. Furthermore, it's worth noting that cabbage has a low glycemic index of 10 [source]. This means that it has minimal impact on blood sugar levels, making it an excellent choice for individuals seeking to manage their carbohydrate intake. Foods with a lower GI digest slowly, leading to a steady rise in blood sugar levels, whereas foods with a high GI are quickly digested, causing a rapid spike.

Cabbage Nutrition Facts

Cabbage, for a portion size of 100 g, offers a rich array of nutrients. It brings forth a trifecta of macronutrients: minimal fat (0.1 g), minor amounts of protein (1.3 g), and a low carbohydrate content (5.8 g), ideal for those on a low-carb diet.

Bringing it to micronutrients, cabbage is packed with multiple vitamins and minerals. It's a remarkable source of Vitamin C (36.6 mg), exceeding the daily recommendation in a small serving. It also provides a good amount of Vitamin K (76 mcg) and Vitamin B6 (0.124 mg), along with traces of other B-vitamins.

In terms of minerals, cabbage offers a modest amount of Potassium (170 mg), Calcium (40 mg), and Magnesium (12 mg). It also contains traces of Iron, Zinc, and Selenium.

Nutrient NameAmount and Unit per 100 g
Net Carbs3.3g
Total lipid (fat)0.1g
Carbohydrate, by difference5.8g
Sugars, total including NLEA3.2g
Fiber, total dietary2.5g
Calcium, Ca40.0mg
Iron, Fe0.47mg
Magnesium, Mg12.0mg
Phosphorus, P26.0mg
Potassium, K170mg
Sodium, Na18.0mg
Zinc, Zn0.18mg
Copper, Cu0.019mg
Selenium, Se0.3µg
Vitamin A, RAE5.0µg
Carotene, beta42.0µg
Carotene, alpha33.0µg
Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol)0.15mg
Lutein + zeaxanthin30.0µg
Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid36.6mg
Vitamin B-60.124mg
Folate, total43.0µg
Choline, total10.7mg
Vitamin K (phylloquinone)76.0µg
Folate, food43.0µg
Folate, DFE43.0µg
Fatty acids, total saturated0.034g
SFA 16:00.034g
MUFA 18:10.017g
PUFA 18:20.017g
Fatty acids, total monounsaturated0.017g
Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated0.017g
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 Cabbage on a Keto Diet

Cabbage is a nutrient-dense food, offering a variety of vitamins and minerals beneficial to health. It is a good source of Vitamin C, Vitamin K, and dietary fiber. It also contains beneficial trace minerals such as potassium, magnesium, and calcium. However, while cabbage is generally considered healthy, it is important to consume it as part of a balanced diet, as it does not contain high levels of certain nutrients like protein or healthy fats.

Incorporating Cabbage into Your Keto Meal Plan

  1. Cabbage is versatile and can be added to a variety of dishes. You could incorporate it into a hearty keto soup, use it as a low-carb substitute for noodles in a stir-fry, or add it to a salad for a crisp, refreshing crunch.
  2. Try out keto-specific recipes featuring cabbage. For instance, a cabbage roll filled with ground meat and spices, or a cabbage slaw with a tangy, sugar-free dressing can be great additions to your keto meal plan.

Keto-Compatible Alternatives for Cabbage

  1. Broccoli is a great keto-friendly alternative to cabbage. Much like cabbage, it can be used in a variety of recipes such as stir-fries or soups. It also has a similar nutritional profile to cabbage, with approximately 4g of net carbs per 100g serving.
  2. Spinach is another excellent substitute. It can be used in salads, sautéed as a side dish, or blended into smoothies. With only about 1g of net carbs per 100g, it's even lower in carbs than cabbage.
  3. Cauliflower, with approximately 3g of net carbs per 100g, is also a good alternative. Its mild flavor and versatility make it a popular choice in many keto recipes, from cauliflower rice to pizza crust. Like cabbage, it's also high in vitamin C and other beneficial nutrients.

Concluding Thoughts on Cabbage and Keto

Cabbage is a versatile and nutrient-rich vegetable that fits comfortably within a ketogenic diet. Its low net carbohydrate content, along with its abundance of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, make it a strong choice. In addition, the diverse ways in which cabbage can be incorporated into meals—from stir-fries to soups—provides ample opportunity for variety in your keto meal plan. This could introduce a new texture and flavor to your meals, while still aligning with your dietary goals. Remember, the goal is not just to adhere to the diet, but to enjoy food and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

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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

Absolutely, raw cabbage is a refreshing and keto-friendly addition to salads or as a crunchy topping for other dishes.

Yes, all types, including green, red, savoy, and napa cabbage fit well within the keto diet due to their similar nutritional profiles.

Of course! You can use cabbage leaves as a wrap for a quick snack, or make a simple, tangy cabbage slaw.