Are Green Apples Keto? All Apple Types & Keto Fruits Reviewed

Keto (Low Carb) | Written by Nathan | Updated on 24 January 2023

Eleven green apples with speckles on it and the stims pitted are resting inside a silver bowl which leads some dieters to question if a green apple is keto or not.

We’ve all heard the saying “an apple a day keeps the Doctor away” and this is because apples are often marketed and glorified as the epitome of a healthy snack, but is a green apple keto approved?

As delicious as green apples are, they may not be the best choice for those working to maintain a state of ketosis due to their high carb count and glycemic index.

But in any case, we’ll review the carbs in every apple type, if any types of apple is keto, and provide a list of keto fruit to choose from for the next time you’re craving something sweet!

How Many Carbs Are in Green Apples?

A small apple is usually at least 100 grams and in just that small serving, granny smith apples have approximately 23 grams of total carbs. Of course each apple’s size will vary slightly, but one can assume that even a small green apple has about 14 net carbs.

As one can imagine, this will scale up quickly for medium and large apples, excluding them from being classified as low-carb.1

Is a Green Apple Keto Friendly? Are Granny Smith Apples Keto?

Anyone following keto must not exceed 20-50 grams of net carbs per day or they risk being kicked out of ketosis (a metabolic state in which the body burns fat instead of sugar to use as energy).

Is a green apple keto? With just one small granny smith apple already weighing in with at least 14 net carbs, even this little snack is rapidly approaching the daily carb limit.

Anyone on weight loss diets–especially keto–should keep an eye on the net carb count of everything they’re eating because even the healthiest foods can have unexpectedly high carbs.

Amount of Carbs in Different Apple Varieties or Types

While granny smiths are likely to break ketosis, there are a wide variety of apples that might have varying nutritional values and carbohydrate counts. Carb restriction is key in the keto diet and its health benefits.2

Amount of Carbs in Gala Apples: 21 carbs and 17 net carbs in 100 grams

Amount of Carbs in Honeycrisp Apples: 22 carbs and 14.2 net carbs in 100 grams

Amount of Carbs in Green Apples (Granny Smith): 22.7 carbs and 13.6 net carbs in 100 grams

Amount of Carbs in Red Delicious Apples: 21.3 carbs and 17 net carbs in 100 grams

Amount of Carbs in Golden Delicious Apples: 22.7 carbs and 13.6 net carbs in 100 grams

Amount of Carbs in Cripps Pink or Pink Lady Apples: 18.5 carbs and 14.9 net carbs in 100 grams

Amount of Carbs in Fuji Apples: 29 carbs and 17.2 net carbs in 100 grams

Amount of Carbs in McIntosh Apples: 22 carbs and 18 net carbs in 100 grams

Amount of Carbs in Braeburn Apples: 22 carbs and 14.9 net carbs in 100 grams

Amount of Carbs in Jonagold Apples: 34 carbs and 28.9 net carbs in 100 grams

Are Other Types of Apples Keto?

According to the list above, green apples tie with the golden delicious variety for lowest net carbs per 100 gram serving. Just one small granny smith can put someone at risk of being bumped out of ketosis, so all other apple varieties with equal and higher carb counts certainly are not keto-approved either.

Thirteen green apples stacked on top of each other and sitting on top of a shiny white surface.

Apples are high in fructose (sugar) and make for a sweet snack–but they’re off the table for anyone on keto. Again, even 100 grams of any type of apple will hit one’s daily carb limit–and even the smallest apples are usually well over 100 grams.

The glycemic index (GI) scale gives values to various foods to measure the impact that food has on blood sugar levels. The higher the GI value, the higher one’s blood sugar will spike after eating that food.

This index ranges from 0 (does not raise blood glucose levels at all) to 100 (drastically elevates blood sugar).

Although each type of apple will vary slightly on the GI due to differing carbohydrate and sugar amounts, apples generally rank at about 36, give or take a couple of points.3 Despite being on the low- to mid-range of the GI, apples are not recommended for those adhering to the ketogenic diet because of their high carbs.4

A Full List of Keto Fruits

There’s countless keto fruits to choose from although apples – green apples includes – are joined by kiwis, pears, pomegranates, mangoes, pineapples, dates, bananas, and some other fruits in being too high carb for keto unless consumed in moderation and very sparingly.

A basket filled with variety of fruits such as apples, banana, plums, oranges, kiwi and grapes.

For one, berries can reduce inflammation, are packed with antioxidants, and tend to be very low-carb.

And on the other hand, avocado tops the list with the least net carbs and is technically a fruit. High in total carbs, coconut meat surprisingly has very few net carbs, making it extremely keto-friendly.

Tomatoes are great on keto as well, followed closely by rhubarb and lemons. These and other fruits on the following chart can quickly raise blood sugar after intense workout routines, provide replenishing fuel for anyone starting a strength routine, and might be helpful for beginners to weight loss diets.

Keto Fruits 

(alphabetical order)

Total Carbs

(per 100g serving)

Net Carbs 

(per 100g serving)

Avocado 8.5g 1.8g
Blackberries 10.2g 5.1g
Blueberries 13g 9g
Cantaloupe 8g 4.8g
Coconut Meat 13g 2g
Cranberries 12.2g 8.4g
Lemons 9g 3.8g
Lime 10.5g 6.2g
Raspberries 11.9g 5.4g
Rhubarb 4.5g 3.1g
Star Fruit 8g 7g
Strawberries 7.7g 6g
Tomato 3.9g 2.9g
Watermelon 8g 7g

Other Keto Approved Foods & Amount of Carbs in Each

Aside from fruits, many other keto low carb options are at your fingertips. Not only can these foods provide nutrients and energy the body needs; they can also aid in immediate and long-lasting weight loss as they fuel the body while allowing one to remain in a state of ketosis.

For example, chicken, turkey, and tuna all provide great protein-packed meal options but have  zero carbohydrates. Meat and fish can help lose belly fat overnight and are perfectly within the parameters of keto’s carb limits.

Five slices of steak on top of a white plate with cilantro, zucchini, and cheese on the side.

There are far more keto-friendly foods than listed, but this can serve as a good jumping-off point for anyone sticking to keto and other low carbohydrate diets.5

Keto Foods 

(alphabetical order)

Total Carbs

(per 100g serving)

Net Carbs 

(per 100g serving)

Almonds 22g 8.6g
Asparagus 3.9g 1.9g
Bacon (pan-fried) 1.4g 0.6g
Beef 0g 0g
Bell Peppers 6.3g 4.3g
Broccoli 7g 4.2g
Brussels Sprouts 7.9g 4.5g
Cabbage 5.5g 3g
Cauliflower 5g 3.2g
Celery 3g 0.9g
Chicken 0g 0g
Cucumbers 3.8g 2.5g
Eggs 1.1g 0.7g
Green Beans 7.9g 4.27g
Ham (extra lean) 1.5g 1.5g
Kale 0.9g 0.1g
Lettuce 3.4g 2g
Pecans 14.8g 4g
Spinach 3.6g 1.6g
Tuna 0g 0g
Walnuts 14.8g 7g
Zucchini 3.1g 2.1g

As shown above, many of these foods are so low carb that they can be combined to form well-rounded keto meals to keep one feeling energized throughout the day. 

Although you’ll have to pass on a green apple, keto is conducive for snacking on nuts, seeds, or berries to stave off cravings throughout the day. Additionally, meats, leafy greens, and certain vegetables can be combined for a protein and energy-packed meal without skyrocketing past one’s carb limit.

That being said, here’s various food types that can be keto approved and a quick guide to ensure they’re actually low carb.

Meat & Fish: Most poultry, meats and fish have no carbohydrates whatsoever and are highly conducive to the keto diet. Unprocessed meats like chicken, pork, fish and beef are best for those striving to keep their bodies in ketosis.

Fish is also very keto-friendly; shrimp, mackerel, lobster, cod, clams, squid, oysters, tilapia, trout, salmon, and other types of fish can all be enjoyed by anyone following keto.

Some shellfish and meats like ham are highly processed and can be high in carbohydrates; be cautious of these.

Dairy: Butter, mayonnaise, heavy cream, full fat sour cream, whipped cream, ricotta, and cottage cheese are approved keto snacks and spreads if eaten in moderation.

Cheeses are a staple of keto for those who don’t follow a dairy free diet. High in fat and low carb, cheese varieties including brie, blue cheese, cheddar, cream cheese, feta, goat cheese, mozzarella, monterey jack, parmesan and swiss are excellent options.

Hit the brakes with American cheese, canned, and spray cheeses as these are highly processed.

Plain greek yogurt is a good option too, and is lower in carbs and more protein-rich than traditional yogurt varieties. These will bring some flavor, fat and protein to the table and promote fullness while staving off pesky cravings.

Cream, half and half, and plant based milks such as soy, coconut and almond should all be suitable for adding flavor to a keto-friendly coffee as well. Anyone experimenting with these milk alternatives should ensure they choose the unsweet option so as not to be ambushed by unexpected sugar and carbs.

Vegetable: Starchy vegetables can be dangerous on keto, but leafy green vegetables are easy on the carbs while full of vitamins and antioxidants. Spinach and lettuce made the chart, but arugula is perfectly keto-safe for salads as well.

Bok choy, kale, and spinach can be used in cooking and many herbs can add some spice to any keto meal.

Other than leafy greens, a few honorable mentions for veggies great for the ketogenic diet include eggplant, okra, mushrooms, spaghetti squash, radishes, turnips, watercress, shallots, sauerkraut, garlic, and rutabagas.

Some vegetables to be wary of and either enjoyed in moderation or avoided altogether include potatoes, corn, and onions, as carbs add up quickly in each of these.

Nuts & Seeds: While nuts can decrease risk of heart disease and cancer, they’re also rich in fiber and can be enjoyed by those on keto.

There are some nuts and seeds that have much higher carbs, but some of the best options for keto and heart health include sesame seeds, peanuts, macadamia nuts, pumpkin seeds, pistachios, flaxseed, chia seeds, almonds, and pecans.

Sunflower seeds are okay in moderation when shelled and unsalted, but should be limited.

Chocolate: Chocolate is allowed on keto but with stipulations: dark chocolate should be the go to option and with the highest percentage of cocoa one can find (ideally over 75%). 

Anyone craving a treat can indulge in a piece of dark chocolate from time to time, as it can reduce risk of heart disease by lowering blood glucose levels; but don’t get carried away, as moderation is key with keto.

Coffee & Tea: Plain black coffee is allowed on keto, and can even be flavored or paired with cream, half and half, or plant based alternative milks. Unsweetened tea is encouraged as well; it’s packed with antioxidants and can provide a less caffeinated alternative to coffee while offering more flavor than water.

Oils: Ghee, grape seed oil, fish oil, hemp seed oil, macadamia oil, olive oil and coconut oil can all fit into a healthy keto diet, but portion sizes and moderation should still be taken into account.

Spices: Someone adhering to keto may want to spice up their foods with seasonings like allspice, cumin, bay leaves, ginger, cilantro, turmeric, chili powder, dill, chives, curry powder, rosemary, paprika, lemon zest, black pepper, oregano, and cinnamon.

Sweeteners: While sugar itself is out of the picture when it comes to keto, some alternative sweeteners can fill its role. Inulin, monk fruit (monk sugar), allulose, erythritol, xylitol, and stevia are among some safe options.

All in all, watch out for anything loaded with sugars: fruit juices, honey, spreads, processed foods and syrups can all sneak up high on the carb count and glycemic index, spiking blood sugar immediately.

So if a fruit or dish tastes abnormally sweet – think bananas, mangos, apples, cereal etc. – then it’s likely not keto approved.

How To Make a Green Apple Keto

Unfortunately, granny smiths are not really conducive to keeping one’s body in ketosis. With just one small green apple, keto daily carb limits are already met, so it’s best to avoid them altogether. That holds true for any variety of apple.

Anyone following trending diets should be carb-conscious but this holds especially true for keto. However, if someone is really craving a granny smith, they could remove the core and seeds, then strictly limit themselves to just a slice or so.

Even this can be risky, so anyone worried about being bumped out of ketosis is better off sticking to foods low on the glycemic index that are also well below the daily net carb limit. One can check out the lists above for some great options of fruits and other foods that might satisfy their craving without the added concern.

Whether intuitive eating for weight loss or strictly following the ketogenic diet, making a habit of checking carbs and nutrition facts can be very helpful. Since granny smiths and other apples are very high in carbs in relation to the daily carb limit on keto, one should be cautious to have extremely little, if any.

While the keto diet does prohibit a green apple, keto does allow many other tasty fruits, vegetables, and other foods.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Types of Food Should I Avoid on a Keto Diet?

Some foods to avoid include chips, crackers, and grains since they are all carb-heavy, have a high glycemic index, and should be avoided by anyone on keto.

Beans and legumes are filling and do carry some health benefits, but are high in carbs and should be consumed only in extremely small portions or, ideally, avoided completely.

Many dressings and condiments can add extra flavor to any dish or salad–but beware, as they’ll add a lot of carbs too. It’s best to stay away from these.

Lastly, alcohol should certainly be excluded from any and all keto diets. Everything from hard cider and wine to rum and whiskey are jam-packed with sugars and carbohydrates.

How Many Carbs Are in a Green Apple if the Skin Is Removed?

A whole medium green apple with its skin removed has approximately 12.6 grams of net carbs; for just a 100 gram serving size, only about 5.8 net carbs.

Is Apple Sauce Keto Approved?

Most applesauce is not suitable for keto, as it is high in carbs and low in fat. This directly opposes keto requirements.

Unless made with many alterations or substitutes to drastically lower the carb count, applesauce is not recommended for those on the keto diet.

Is Apple Juice Keto Friendly?

Apple juice is very high in glucose and fructose, adding a lot of carbohydrates that make it prohibited on the ketogenic diet unless consumed in very small amounts. It’s recommended to stay away from apple juice to ensure ketosis is maintained.

Is Apple Cider Vinegar Keto?

With apples and many apple-based foods and drinks being disallowed on keto, it may come as a surprise that apple cider vinegar is great for keto. Apple cider vinegar (ACV) has many health benefits; it can even help curb cravings and lower blood sugar after carb-heavy meals.

With negligible carbs, ACV can be diluted with water to drink, or used as an ingredient in sauces or salad dressings.


References

1U.S. Department of Agriculture. (2019, April 1). Apples, raw, with skin (Includes foods for USDA’s Food Distribution Program). Food Data Central. Retrieved January 7, 2023, from <https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/171688/nutrients>

2Hoge, B. (2022, February 7). The keto diet and its health benefits. University of Alabama at Birmingham. Retrieved January 8, 2023, from <https://www.uab.edu/news/youcanuse/item/12605-the-keto-diet-and-its-health-benefits>

3LeWine, H. E. (2021, November 16). Glycemic index for 60+ foods. Harvard Health Publishing. Retrieved January 7, 2023, from <https://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/glycemic-index-and-glycemic-load-for-100-foods>

4Harvard School of Public Health. (2023). Diet Review: Ketogenic Diet for Weight Loss. The Nutrition Source. Retrieved January 8, 2023, from <https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/healthy-weight/diet-reviews/ketogenic-diet/>

5Harvard School of Public Health. (2023). Low-Carbohydrate Diets. The Nutrition Source. Retrieved January 8, 2023, from <https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/carbohydrates/low-carbohydrate-diets/>

About the Author

Nathan

Nathan has been a fitness enthusiast for the past 12 years and jumps between several types of training such as bodybuilding, powerlifting, cycling, gymnastics, and backcountry hiking. Due to the varying caloric needs of numerous sports, he has cycled between all types of diets and currently eats a whole food diet. In addition, Nathan lives with several injuries such as hip impingement, spondylolisthesis, and scoliosis, so he underwent self-rehabilitation and no longer lives with debilitating pain.