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Are Mushrooms Keto? 3 Reasons Why They Are Perfect Plus Easy Recipes

Are Mushrooms Keto? 3 Reasons Why They Are Perfect Plus Easy Recipes cover
Written by Real Mushrooms - Updated: April 26, 2024

For anyone new to keto, the question, “Are mushrooms keto-friendly?” is unavoidable.

And the answer is a resounding yes! Mushrooms are perfect for keto primarily because they’re low on carbohydrates.

That’s not all.

Mushrooms also provide a host of vitamins and micronutrients that help resolve common challenges of the ketogenic diet.

As you may know, keto is a high-fat, low-carb diet that restricts most fruits and vegetables due to their high carb content. This can pose a challenge when it comes to meeting your daily fiber, vitamin, and mineral requirements.

Mushrooms’ fiber and essential nutrient content can play a massive role in helping you stay the keto course.

Moreover, adding functional mushroom supplements to your list of keto foods introduces adaptogens that are beneficial to any dieter.

That’s why today we want to delve deeper into:

  • How mushrooms can ease keto-specific challenges
  • Why low carb content isn’t the only reason to reach for mushrooms
  • 3 Tasty recipes that add mushrooms and functional mushrooms to your keto diet

3 Reasons Why Mushrooms Are Perfect for Keto

various functional mushrooms, perfect for keto
Many dietary mushrooms are a good source of fiber, B vitamins, and key minerals like copper, potassium, and selenium.

Mushrooms are an ace in the hole in achieving the keto trifecta—high fat, moderate protein, and low carb.

To stay true to the keto diet, you need your total daily calories — 2,000 for women and 2,500 for men — to come primarily from fats. We break down keto nutrient distribution in the table below (1).

For context, one banana (∼100 grams) may give you anywhere between 23–27 g of carbs.

This begs the question: how low is the carb content of mushrooms compared to the limits of keto?

Low Carbohydrate Content

man holding a handful of button mushrooms
White button mushrooms, shown above, are a good source of the amino acid ergothioneine.

The carb content of mushrooms ranges between 4 g per 100 grams for white button mushrooms and 8.5 g per 100 grams for king oyster mushrooms.

This is well below the minimum carb threshold you’re aiming for with keto.

For your body to stay in ketosis (burning fat instead of sugar), your daily intake of carbs should be approximately 35 g and no more than 50 g.

While you need to be more cautious with shiitake mushrooms, adding a serving of mushrooms (100 g, or about 4 oz) to one or more meals will give you amazing nutritional benefits without spiking your blood sugar or destabilizing ketosis.

lion’s mane, source of fiber and beta-d-glucan
Lion’s mane mushroom contains 7.6 g of carbohydrates per 100 g, but 4.4 g of that is fiber, meaning the net carbs are only 3.2 g per serving.

Source of Dietary Fiber and Beta-D-Glucan

Despite being low carb, mushrooms have a relatively high fiber content: 1.7–4.4 g of fiber per 100 grams of mushrooms. That’s better than carrots or broccoli!

Fiber is typically found in fruits, veg, and grains, which are all restricted in keto. Therefore, you’ll need all the fiber you can get to aid your digestion while following the keto diet.

Mushrooms contain two types of dietary fiber:

  • Insoluble fiber: Bulks up your stool and eases the passage of food through the intestines
  • Soluble fiber: Stabilize blood sugar levels by slowing down nutrient absorption in the gut

Here’s where it gets interesting.

Mushrooms are an excellent source of a specific type of soluble fiber called beta-d-glucan.

Beta-d-glucan, an immunomodulator, binds to immune receptors, up-regulating or down-regulating immune responses according to your body’s needs.

Benefits of beta-d-glucan include:

  • Decreased levels of bad cholesterol in the blood (LDL), therefore lowering your risk of heart disease (2)
  • Regulation of the body’s immune response and inflammatory triggers, helping you avoid a prolonged state of inflammation (3)
  • Lower blood sugar levels due to increased insulin sensitivity in the body’s tissues, which absorb and use glucose more effectively (4)

Functional mushrooms, such as reishi, turkey tail, and cordyceps, are good sources of beta-glucans, giving you about 25% of your recommended daily intake.

To tie it all together, mushrooms’ fiber content may be the answer to challenges common in the keto diet. These include:

  • Constipation due to low fiber intake
  • Increased inflammatory markers because of the higher intake of saturated fats
  • Struggle to maintain ketosis (fat burning) since blood sugar levels may fluctuate based on food, physical activity, medication, hormones, or sleep

A Powerhouse of Vitamins, Minerals, and Antioxidants

oyster mushrooms high in antioxidants
Oyster mushrooms are high in antioxidants that can fight free radicals and prevent damage to cells, helping to lower inflammation.

Five servings of fruit and vegetables per day give us the vitamins and minerals we need to function healthily.

Unfortunately, keto diet restrictions can severely limit your nutrient options. This is where mushrooms come in, helping you bridge the nutrient gap.

Essential nutrients in mushrooms include:

  • Potassium: Helps regulate your heartbeat, muscle, and nerve function, as well as fluid balance in the body (5)
  • Niacin: Aids in converting food into energy and repairing damaged DNA (6)
  • Pantothenic acid: Helps your metabolism to function properly and aids in the building and breakdown of fats in the body (7)
  • Selenium: Powerful antioxidant that protects your body from damage caused by excess free radicals and supports proper function of the thyroid gland and production of thyroid hormones (8)
  • Ergothioneine: Stable antioxidant that protects red and white blood cells from oxidative damage (9)
  • Glutathione: Antioxidant that’s essential for the proper function of the immune system, building and repair of tissues, and protection of cells from oxidative damage (10)

The ketogenic diet can affect your metabolism, fat breakdown, hormonal balance, kidney function, and energy levels (11).

Boosting the above nutrients with mushrooms will help you remain healthy throughout your keto journey.

Now, let’s look at a few delicious, keto-friendly mushroom recipes.

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Savory Recipe: Keto Stuffed Mushrooms

Our keto stuffed mushrooms contain Lion’s Mane and tons of flavor.

Why we love this recipe: It’s a simple, mostly hands-off recipe that’s packed with flavor, healthy fats and protein, and the mushroom superfood lion’s mane, which supports heart, brain, and gut health.

Serves: 6
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 35 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb medium cremini mushrooms (baby bellas)
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 4 oz shredded mild cheddar cheese
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil
  • 3 freshly chopped garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp Organic Lion’s Mane Mushroom Powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • For serving: 1 sliced avocado and freshly chopped parsley

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.
  2. Chop garlic cloves.
  3. Remove mushroom stems, rinse mushroom caps, and pat them dry. Chop the mushroom stems and set aside for the stuffing.
  4. Heat the avocado oil in a skillet on medium heat and sauté the chopped garlic for a few minutes.
  5. Add chopped mushroom stems to the skillet and sauté.
  6. Cook the ground turkey in the same skillet for about 7 minutes or until it has browned.
  7. Add salt and pepper to taste and the Organic Lion’s Mane Mushroom Powder.
  8. Mix the cheese into the turkey stuffing and cover the skillet for 1–2 minutes. Uncover and stir until all the cheese is melted and combined with the turkey.
  9. Fill the inside of each mushroom cap with the turkey mixture and place them on a lined baking tray.
  10. Bake for 10–12 minutes or until the mushroom edges are slightly browned.
  11. Serve with freshly sliced avocado and a sprinkle of fresh parsley.

Expert Tip: If you want a meatier flavor and texture or more substantial portions, switch out the cremini mushrooms for portobellos.

For a creamier stuffing, our Spinach Artichoke Stuffed Mushrooms are the way to go. Plus, they’re keto-friendly too.

Sweet Recipe: Keto Cinnamon “Sugar” Donut Holes

These keto-friendly donut holes may just become your new favorite dessert snack.

Why we love this recipe: It’ll satisfy your sweet tooth craving while being fully keto-friendly and delivering brain health benefits, thanks to the lion’s mane mushroom.

Serves: 12 donut holes
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:

Keto Donut

  • 1¼ cup almond flour
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Organic Lion’s Mane Mushroom Powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsp ghee or melted coconut oil
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp of your fave sweetener e.g. monk fruit / xylitol

Cinnamon Sugar

  • 3 tbsp of your fave sweetener
  • 2 tbsp melted ghee or coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. In a glass bowl, combine lion’s mane powder, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, almond flour, and sweetener. Mix until well combined.
  3. Thoroughly mix in your wet ingredients—vanilla, egg, and coconut oil/ghee.
  4. Refrigerate the dough for 10–15 minutes to make it more workable.
  5. Roll the dough into 12 balls.
  6. Bake on a parchment-lined baking tray for 15 minutes.
  7. While they bake, make your cinnamon ‘sugar’ coating by mixing the sweetener and cinnamon.
  8. After your keto donuts have cooled, dip each one in the melted coconut oil or ghee and roll in the cinnamon sugar mix.

"I love Lion's Mane in my morning coffee. It gives me energy, clarity, and focus and helps me be on point in my communication. It helps with recall and retention."
- Tammera

Cacao Coconut Mushroom Tonic

person pours a glass cacao coconut mushroom tonic
Support your immune system with our 5 Defender’s Organic Mushroom Complex, plus some added magnesium and potassium from raw organic cacao.

Why we love this recipe: It’s a calming drink that can help stabilize your energy levels throughout the day.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pinch of sea salt
  • 1 heaped tbsp raw, organic cacao
  • 1 tsp coconut butter
  • 1 tsp 5 Defenders Organic Mushroom Complex
  • 500 ml of water, off boil for 2–3 minutes
  • Your favorite keto sweetener

Instructions:

Blend all ingredients together until smooth. Top with black sesame seeds.

Do Keto the Healthy Way With Real Mushrooms

If you’re ready to ramp up your keto journey with the nutritional benefits of mushrooms, try the 100% certified organic range of mushroom supplements from Real Mushrooms.

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Resources:

  1. Diet Review: Ketogenic Diet for Weight Loss. (2019, May 22). The Nutrition Source. https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/healthy-weight/diet-reviews/ketogenic-diet/
  2. Sima, P., Vannucci, L., & Vetvicka, V. (2018). β-glucans and cholesterol (Review). International journal of molecular medicine, 41(4), 1799–1808. https://doi.org/10.3892/ijmm.2018.3411
  3. Hoffman, O. A., Olson, E. J., & Limper, A. H. (1993). Fungal beta-glucans modulate macrophage release of tumor necrosis factor-alpha in response to bacterial lipopolysaccharide. Immunology letters, 37(1), 19–25. https://doi.org/10.1016/0165-2478(93)90127-n
  4. Chen, J., & Raymond, K. (2008). Beta-glucans in the treatment of diabetes and associated cardiovascular risks. Vascular health and risk management, 4(6), 1265–1272. https://doi.org/10.2147/vhrm.s3803
  5. Potassium. (2021, November 19). The Nutrition Source. https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/potassium/
  6. Niacin – Vitamin B3. (2020, July 6). The Nutrition Source. https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/niacin-vitamin-b3/
  7. Pantothenic Acid – Vitamin B5. (2020, August 11). The Nutrition Source. https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/pantothenic-acid-vitamin-b5/
  8. Office of Dietary Supplements - Selenium. (n.d.). https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Selenium-HealthProfessional/
  9. Fu, T. (2022, March 18). Ergothioneine as a Natural Antioxidant Against Oxidative Stress-Related Diseases. Frontiers. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fphar.2022.850813/full
  10. Minich, D. M., & Brown, B. I. (2019). A Review of Dietary (Phyto)Nutrients for Glutathione Support. Nutrients, 11(9), 2073. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11092073
  11. Batch, J. T., Lamsal, S. P., Adkins, M., Sultan, S., & Ramirez, M. N. (2020). Advantages and Disadvantages of the Ketogenic Diet: A Review Article. Cureus, 12(8), e9639. https://doi.org/10.7759/cureus.9639

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Real Mushrooms is the premier provider of organic mushroom extracts, verified for the beneficial medicinal compounds like beta-glucans and free from starchy fillers like grains. With over 40 years of mushroom growing experience, Real Mushrooms prides itself on providing a transparent source of functional mushrooms that you can trust. All the information provided on our blog has been reviewed by our science and medical team.

Disclaimer: The information or products mentioned in this article are provided as information resources only, and are not to be used or relied on to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. This information does not create any patient-doctor relationship, and should not be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment. The information is intended for health care professionals only. The statements made in this article have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Any products mentioned are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The information in this article is intended for educational purposes. The information is not intended to replace medical advice offered by licensed medical physicians. Please consult your doctor or health practitioner for any medical advice.

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