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Summer squash and winter squash are tricky vegetables on keto because their carb counts vary so much. When it comes to carbs in acorn squash, is acorn squash keto approved? Let’s take a closer look at whether this veggie works for a low carb lifestyle, and ways to cut carbs more while keeping all the flavor.
Is Acorn Squash Keto Friendly?
Sorry, acorn squash is not very keto friendly. Unlike squash varieties like zucchini, you won’t be able to enjoy acorn squash in average serving sizes on keto.
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How Many Carbs In Acorn Squash?
Are there carbs in acorn squash? Absolutely. One cup of raw cubed acorn squash contains 14.6 grams total carbohydrates [*].
Are net carbs in acorn squash any lower? Yes — since it contains a few grams of fiber, a cup of raw acorn squash has 12.5 grams net carbs.
How many carbs in cooked acorn squash?
Are acorn squash carbs keto when you cook it? Not really. Carbs in acorn squash (baked) add up to 29.9 grams total carbs and 20.9 grams net carbs for a 1-cup cubed serving [*].
In a cup of mashed acorn squash, you’ll find 21.5 grams total carbs and 15.1 grams net carbs [*].
The chart below summarizes carb counts for all serving sizes of this squash:
|Serving Size||Total Carbs||Net Carbs|
|1 cup, cubed, raw||14.6g||12.5g|
|1 cup, cubed, cooked||29.9g||20.9g|
|1 cup, mashed||21.5g||15.1g|
Acorn Squash Nutrition
If you follow a low calorie diet and your macros allow it, acorn squash is a healthy vegetable choice. Here are the full nutritional facts for a serving of acorn squash (cubed and cooked), according to the USDA:
- 115 calories
- 0.29 grams of fat
- 0 mg cholesterol
- 2.3 grams of protein
- 29.9 grams of carbohydrates
For those monitoring carbohydrates, acorn squash is a solid source of minerals like magnesium and potassium (over 20 percent daily value, or DV) — both of which can help fight keto flu. A slice of acorn squash is also rich in vitamins, including vitamin A, vitamin B6, and folate.
The bright orange flesh in acorn squash is rich in carotenoids, which serve as potent antioxidants in the body and may support eye and brain health [*, *]. This squash is also rich in vitamin C — another powerful antioxidant that supports a strong immune system [*].
Keto Acorn Squash Substitutes
If carbs in this squash are too high for you, don’t worry — there are several lower-carb substitutes you can use in its place!
- Butternut Squash – Slightly lower in carbs, and tastes very similar.
- Pumpkin – Contains even fewer carbohydrates per serving, and works well for oven roasted recipes in place of acorn squash. (Pairs well with olive oil, butter, or cinnamon, too!)
- Spaghetti Squash – It doesn’t have the same nutty flavor, but you can use it as a bulking agent for dishes that require a large amount of acorn squash.
- Cauliflower – When mashed, you can mix it with acorn squash to “stretch” the carbs.
- Small Amounts Of Acorn Squash – While not as practical, you might still be able to enjoy a piece or two of this squash without exceeding your macros.
Conclusion: Is Acorn Squash Good For Keto?
With more carbohydrates than many squash varieties, acorn squash is not the best choice for keto. Try lower carb squash substitutes instead to keep its nutty taste and fit your macros.
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