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Is Hummus Keto-Friendly?

Hummus on a kitchen counter

Curious if hummus fits into your keto lifestyle? Hold onto your veggies! In this exploration, we'll uncover whether this beloved Middle Eastern spread aligns with the low-carb, high-fat keto diet, offering insights and alternatives to keep your cravings satisfied while staying in ketosis.

TL;DR

  • Although nutrient-rich, hummus is not the best fit for a keto diet due to its high carbohydrate content.
  • Despite the health benefits of its primary ingredients, hummus can disrupt ketosis, the metabolic state crucial for a ketogenic diet.
  • Don't surrender flavor for health; there are keto-compatible tasty alternatives for hummus.

Is Hummus Keto-Friendly?

Thinking about dipping into hummus on your keto journey? Hold that thought! Hummus, a popular Middle Eastern spread, is not keto because chickpeas are not keto-friendly. But don't worry! In this post, we've got your back with some delicious keto-friendly alternatives to satisfy your cravings without derailing your diet.

Can You Have Hummus on a Strict Keto Diet?

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, a standard serving of hummus (approximately 100g) contains 9.5g net carbs. This makes it very hard to include hummus in a strict keto diet. To put into perspective, most individuals following a standard keto aim to keep their daily carbohydrate intake below 20-50g, depending on personal variance.

And can you have hummus if you're just doing low-carb?

When it comes to hummus on a low-carb diet, moderation is key. While hummus can be a tasty addition to your meal, it's essential to watch your portion size due to its carb content. Opting for a small serving, such as a tablespoon or two, can help you enjoy the flavor without exceeding your daily carb limit.

Think of using it as a topping rather than a main dip, and steer clear of sweeter dessert varieties.

Carbs in Hummus

Typically, a serving of hummus, which clocks in at about 2 tablespoons, packs around 6-8 grams of carbs. This carb content mainly stems from its key ingredient: chickpeas, which are naturally high in carbohydrates. Besides chickpeas, hummus is whipped up with ingredients like tahini (sesame seed paste), olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and spices. While the fat from olive oil can slow down the digestion of carbs, helping to moderate blood sugar spikes, it doesn't magically transform hummus into a keto-friendly option due to its carb load.

Nutritional Snapshot of Hummus

Hummus is a nutritional powerhouse, packed with a diverse range of both macro and micronutrients. A 100g serving offers 7.35g of protein, essential for muscle repair and growth, alongside 17.1g of healthy fats, including a balance of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. These fats are crucial for cell health and can aid in maintaining a healthy cardiovascular system.

Surprisingly, hummus also contains a significant amount of dietary fiber, around 5.4g per 100g serve. This can aid in digestion and assist in maintaining consistent blood sugar levels. Furthermore, it consists of 9.5g of net carbs, contributing to your daily carbohydrate needs.

A glance at the micronutrients is equally impressive. Hummus is high in Magnesium (71.1mg), the mineral known to support muscle and nerve function, and regulate blood sugar levels. There's also a generous amount of Potassium (289.0mg) for heartbeat regulation, and Phosphorus (166.0mg) for bone health.

Its Vitamin profile too is diverse, with Vitamin K1 (17.2ug), involved in blood clotting, and Vitamin E (1.74mg), known for its antioxidant properties. Notably, it also includes some amount of B-vitamins such as B6, Thiamin, Riboflavin, and Niacin, all significant for energy production and overall metabolic function.

In terms of trace minerals, Zinc (1.38mg) for immune health, Iron (2.41mg) for oxygen transportation, and Manganese (1.06mg) for enzyme function are all present. Plus, it has some unsung heroes of nutrition, like Lutein + zeaxanthin (258.0ug), carotenoids known for eye health.

Nutrient NameAmount and Unit per 100g
Net Carbs9.5g
Carbohydrate, by difference14.9g
Fiber, total dietary5.4g
Total fats17.1g
Protein7.35g
Sodium, Na438.0mg
Potassium, K289.0mg
Magnesium, Mg71.1mg
Calcium, Ca41.0mg
Vitamin A1.0ug
Vitamin B-60.14mg
Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol)1.74mg
Vitamin K117.2ug
Copper, Cu0.35mg
Iron, Fe2.41mg
Phosphorus, P166.0mg
Selenium, Se16.2ug
Zinc, Zn1.38mg
Nitrogen1.18g
Beta-carotene12.0ug
Cryptoxanthin, beta3.0ug
Lutein + zeaxanthin258.0ug
Betaine0.2mg
Manganese, Mn1.06mg
Thiamin0.15mg
Riboflavin0.12mg
Niacin0.95mg
Pantothenic acid0.32mg
Folate, total36.0ug
Choline, total46.6mg
Calories229.0kcal
Water58.7g
Fatty acids, total saturated2.22g
Fatty acids, total monounsaturated6.37g
Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated7.48g
This data was provided by the US Department of Agriculture's FoodData Central system.
'Hummus' was not found in FoodData Central, so nutritional data for 'Hummus, commercial' was used instead under Cast Iron Keto's editorial and research standards.

Health Implications of Hummus on a Keto Diet

Hummus isn't just tasty; it also packs a punch in the health department. Rich in plant-based protein and fiber, hummus can help keep you feeling full and satisfied. Plus, it's loaded with essential nutrients like iron, folate, and vitamin B6, which are crucial for overall well-being.

Its primary ingredient, chickpeas, are packed with plant-based protein and fiber. High fiber foods are known to aid in digestive health, while protein is essential for the growth and repair of tissues, among other critical functions.

Another component of hummus, tahini (made from sesame seeds), is an excellent source of essential vitamins and minerals like B vitamins and vitamin E, and important minerals like magnesium and zinc.

Furthermore, the olive oil in hummus adds heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, known for their potential benefits on heart health. Olive oil is also associated with reduced inflammation and boasts antioxidant properties.

But since it's not keto-friendly, we're going to explore some other keto alternatives below!

Keto-Compatible Alternatives for Hummus

Even though hummus does not quite fit the keto mold, this doesn't mean you have to steer clear of delicious low-carb dips. Here are some alternatives that can grace your keto diet with hummus-like satisfaction while keeping your carb intake in check:

  • Guacamole: Guacamole, traditionally made with avocados, lime juice, cilantro, tomatoes, onions, and jalapenos, is naturally low in carbs and high in healthy fats, making it an excellent keto-friendly substitute for hummus. It can serve the same purpose as hummus, becoming a wonderful dip for veggies or a creamy spread on low-carb bread. Plus, at approximately 2g of net carbs per 100g (as per USDA), guacamole carries a fraction of the carbs found in hummus.
  • Cauliflower Hummus: This is a variation of hummus that replaces chickpeas with cooked cauliflower. Blended with tahini, olive oil, and spices, it recreates the flavor profile and texture of traditional hummus with significantly fewer carbs. Per 100g, cauliflower carries only about 3g of net carbs, and cauliflower hummus is an excellent way to enjoy the hummus experience without breaking your carb bank.
  • Baba Ganoush: Ever tried Baba Ganoush? This Mediterranean spread and dip offer a delightful twist, swapping chickpeas for eggplant while keeping the rest of the ingredients in sync. Check out this Cast Iron Keto homemade Baba Ganoush recipe. It has about 5g of net carbs per serving and lots of spices!

Concluding Thoughts on Hummus and Keto

While it's possible to enjoy hummus in small amounts, if you're following a low-carb diet, it's better to stick to keto alternatives. If you're craving variety, explore other low-carb options like baba ganoush, pate, or black soybean hummus. And don't forget to pair your dips with keto-friendly crackers, pita breads, or fresh veggies for a satisfying snack or appetizer.

Explore our Is It Keto Knowledge Hub.

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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.

Disclaimer:

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.

The views expressed at, or through, Cast Iron Keto are for informational purposes only. Cast Iron Keto cannot guarantee the validity of the information found here. While we use reasonable efforts to include accurate and up-to-date information, we make no warranties as to the accuracy of the content and assume no liability or responsibility for any errors or omissions in the content. All liability with respect to actions taken or not taken based on the contents of this website are hereby expressly disclaimed. The content on this posting is provided "as is;" no representations are made that the content is error-free.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, hummus is relatively high in carbohydrates. Approximately 100g of hummus carries about 12.5g of net carbs, which is a significant amount for a strict ketogenic diet that typically allows 20-50g of carbs per day.

Hummus is primarily made of chickpeas, which are high in carbohydrates. Consuming hummus regularly could potentially disrupt the state of ketosis, a metabolic state crucial for the ketogenic diet.

No, edamame hummus is not keto friendly due to its higher carb content from the edamame beans.

No, chocolate hummus is not keto-friendly as it typically contains higher amounts of carbs, averaging around 10-15 grams of net carbs per 2-tablespoon serving.