Is Jicama Keto?
Written by Tony Lozzi
on February 02, 2021
Is jicama keto
Yes. Though jicama is a root vegetable, much like radish its carb content is full of fiber. For keto dieters who miss various other non-keto vegetables in their life, jicama offers some unique alternatives, if you're willing to learn how to cook it. Ultimately, it fits very well into your daily macronutrient breakdown, and unlike other root vegetables, it won't tank your daily carb count.
Keto rating: Good
Jicama is full of healthy, prebiotic fiber, low in net carbs and protein, and essentially fat-free. The other reason it's such a healthy choice for keto dieters is that it has vitamin C, magnesium, potassium and other vitamins that are necessary but can be difficult to get while avoiding carbs.
While it's not the nutritional and culinary powerhouse on the level of an avocado, its crunch and versatility make it a good addition to your keto meal plan.
Examining jicama for keto dieters
Jicama - also sometimes called a Mexican turnip - is a root vegetable that is native to Central and South America, where it has been a staple in the diets of indigenous people for hundredsof years. It's highly nutritious and each jicama bulb is enormous - it looks like a giant turnip, providing food for a whole family quite easily. It has a mild, peppery taste and bright, crisp white flesh underneath its brown exterior, like a mild, overgrown radish.
Jicama does a great job of imitating other vegetables on keto; one of the most enduringly popular ways to eat it is in fry form. Sliced sticks of jicama are seasoned and air-fried or baked until crispy. Though they're not a perfect replica of French fries, they'll scratch that itch on keto, and in a healthy way.
The biggest benefit to jicama on keto is the fact that, per 1 cup serving, you get great levels of vitamin C, folate, manganese, iron, potassium and magnesium. Additionally, 1 cup only costs you 5 net carbohydrates, which is a big deal - it's hard to get that few carbs in that volume of vegetables.
What are the health benefits of jicama?
A huge percentage of the fiber in jicama comes in the form of inulin, which is a prebiotic fiber that good gut bacteria love to eat. Inulin is the preferred fiber of Quest bars and other low carb protein snacks, but as always, it's best to get it in whole foods. Jicama is loaded with inulin, and your gut bacteria will thank you for it.
Jicama for the keto diet
While we are not at a point where there are a lot of premade jicama products in most grocery stores, the vegetable itself is becoming more readily available. Learning to cook with it can be a useful skill to have if you're going to continue to stick with keto for the long haul.
Jicama nutritional facts
Per 1 cup serving:
- Calories: 50
- Fat: 0g
- Protein: 1g
- Carbs: 11g
- Sugar: 0g
- Dietary Fiber: 6g
- Sugar alcohols: 0g
Making your own keto jicama recipes
As we stated, jicama fries are probably the most well-known keto food hacks, but there are other delicious ways to utilize jicama in your ketogenic meal plan.
- Gnom-Gnom prefaces this recipe with "these are actually crisp", which is a good point to make. While there are many recipes out there that talk a good game about crispy, fry-like jicama, it's hard to achieve. By cutting them into uniform pieces and roasting a bit longer, you can achieve a crispier jicama fry.
- Bonus: Gnom-Gnom has a keto ketchup recipe that is pretty close to the real deal, so don't be afraid to slather it on your jicama fries and go to town.
- If you're a keto adherent and you haven't made chaffles yet, you're missing out. Basically a chaffle is a cheese-and-egg based tiny waffle made on one of these mini waffle makers. They're a huge part of keto culture right now, because they're delicious on their own but can make for a great bun substitute for sandwiches.
- Regardless, this recipe uses grated jicama and cheese to make a crispy, delicious hashbrown copy that's keto-approved.
- The author of this recipe states "I have a confession to make - I hate cauliflower as a potato substitute". A lot of keto dieters think the same thing; cauliflower is great on its own, but when it's used to sub in for potatoes, it's decidedly lackluster.
- This mock potato salad uses jicama root, and with its neutral flavor, the jicama soaks up all the delicious potato-salad taste without the carbs.
- This one is simple and straightforwardly delicious - spice the jicama, wrap it in bacon, bake it and try to let it cool before you devour it. It's a fun game we like to play with the roof of our mouth.
Jicama is a great addition to your keto diet routine
While the vast majority of jicama recipes online are some form of "jicama replaces potato", there are others out there and you can experiment yourself. At its core, jicama is keto-friendly, and like radishes, you can use it in a lot of places where potato would go. Despite its typical role as a potato-substitute, however, jicama can be eaten raw, in a slaw, or any other way you want to use it.
Author: Tony Lozzi
Tony Lozzi is a keto adherent who lost over 200 pounds cutting carbs and lifting weights. He has researched low carb eating for over 10 years and runs www.fit2father.com, a keto blog dedicated to helping others lose weight with keto. He lives in the US with his wife, kids, and various cats.