Low Carb Potato Substitutes: The 13 Best Alternatives


Potatoes are delicious, healthy root vegetables you can enjoy in many ways. They are carbohydrate heavy which is why some people may want to use an alternative. Therefore, let’s find out the best low carb potato substitutes.

The following are the best low carb potato substitutes:

  1. Cauliflower
  2. Turnips
  3. Rutabaga
  4. Daikon radish
  5. Celeriac
  6. Butternut squash
  7. Acorn squash
  8. Broccoli
  9. Kohlrabi
  10. Brussels sprouts
  11. Pumpkin
  12. Kabocha
  13. Zucchini

In this article I will compare their carbohydrates and nutrients side-by-side. In addition, I’ll examine their tastes, textures and how you may want to use them in your dishes.

Low Carb Potato Substitutes

1. Cauliflower

As a cruciferous vegetable, cauliflower has a low number of carbohydrates at only 4.9 grams per 100 grams, a little more than one cup. Potatoes contain 15.7 grams.

Cauliflower has 10.9 grams fewer carbohydrates than potatoes per 100 grams.

Let’s take a look at their carbohydrates and nutrients.

  Potato, raw (100 g) Cauliflower, raw (100 g)
Calories 69 25
Protein 1.68 g 1.92 g
Carbohydrates 15.7 g 4.9 g
Fiber 2.4 g 2 g
Fat 0.10 g 0.28 g
Sugar 1.15 g 1.91 g

Nutrient Resources 1 2

In addition to the carbs, cauliflower has a bit more than a third less calories per 100 grams than potatoes. Therefore, if you’re looking for a low-calorie substitute, this is a really good option.

It’s also higher in:

  • Choline
  • Folate
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin K

Beyond being a low-carb vegetable, cauliflower is one of the most versatile foods out there. You can prepare it in many ways including: 

  • Mashing it 
  • Roasting it
  • Baking it
  • Frying it 

You can even find cauliflower rice, pizza crust, bread, tortillas at many health grocery stores. Kraft even makes a cauliflower Mac and cheese, making it a great low-carb substitute for many foods.

mashed cauliflower
Low Carb Potato Substitutes – Mashed cauliflower

2. Turnips

Turnips have 6.4 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams. Turnips have 9.3 grams fewer carbohydrates per 100 grams than potatoes.

  Potato, raw (100 g) Turnips, raw (100 g)
Calories 69 28
Protein 1.68 g 0.90 g
Carbohydrates 15.7 g 6.4 g
Fiber 2.4 g 1.8 g
Fat 0.10 g 0.10 g
Sugar 1.15 g 3.80 g

Nutrient Resources 3

In addition, turnips are a great option if you’re looking for a low-calorie alternative. Per 100 grams, they have less than half the calories. It also carries significantly more of the following: 

  • Calcium
  • Vitamin C

You might be thinking of the slightly sweet, crunchy and almost watery taste of raw turnips, but their consistency can be similar to potatoes when cooked.

You can use a turnip to do almost anything a cooked potato can do including the following:

  • Bake them
  • Mash them
  • Fry them
  • Blend them into soups
  • Tots
  • Fries 

Just make sure to boil the turnips beforehand, so they get that potato consistency.

mashed turnips
Low Carb Potato Substitutes – Mashed Turnips

3. Rutabaga

Rutabaga has 8.6 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams. Rutabaga has 7.1 grams fewer carbohydrates than potatoes per 100 grams.

Let’s take a look at their carbohydrates and nutrients.

  Potato, raw (100 g) Rutabaga, raw (100 g)
Calories 69 37
Protein 1.68 g 1.08 g
Carbohydrates 15.7 g 8.6 g
Fiber 2.4 g 2.3 g
Fat 0.10 g 0.16 g
Sugar 1.15 g 4.46 g

Nutrient Resources 4

In addition, rutabagas have considerable less calories than potatoes. They have slightly less protein and almost the same fiber.

Rutabagas have more of the following: 

  • Calcium
  • Vitamin C
  • Folate

Rutabaga is basically a combination between a cabbage and a turnip. Although it sounds like an unlikely match, rutabagas can be delicious. They’re very popular in Sweden, which is where they get their nickname (swede) from. 

They work great in:

  • Soups
  • Stews
  • Any recipe calling for mashed or blended potatoes.

Try peeling and dicing a rutabaga next time you make a vegetable soup. You won’t even miss the potatoes.

4. Daikon Radish

Daikon radish has 3.3 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams, 18.3 grams fewer than potatoes.

Let’s examine the carbohydrates and nutrients side-by-side:

  Potato, baked (100 g) Daikon radish, cooked (100 g)
Calories 93 38
Protein 1.96 g 0.67 g
Carbohydrates 21.6 g 3.3 g
Fiber 1.5 g 1.5 g
Fat 0.10 g 2.63 g
Sugar 1.70 g 1.80 g

Nutrient Resources 5 6

If you’re counting calories or carbs, daikon radishes contain less and is a good potato substitute.

In addition, daikon radish has more of the following: 

  • Calcium
  • Folate
  • Vitamin A

Daikon is a type of radish very common in Japanese cuisine and other East Asian cultures. At only 3.3 grams of carbs, daikons are fantastic potato substitutes.

It’s usually consumed raw or pickled in Japan but tastes surprisingly similar to potatoes when baked or boiled.

Try peeling the daikon and baking it with a little bit of salt and olive oil. This will help find the salty satisfaction of a baked potato at a fraction of the carbs. 

daikon radishes raw
Low Carb Potato Substitutes – Daikon Radishes

5. Celeriac (Celery Root)

Celery root has 9.2 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams, 6.5 grams fewer than potatoes.

Let’s examine the carbohydrates and nutrients side-by-side:

  Potato, raw (100 g) Celeriac, raw (100 g)
Calories 69 42
Protein 1.68 g 1.50 g
Carbohydrates 15.7 g 9.2 g
Fiber 2.4 g 1.8 g
Fat 0.10 g 0.30 g
Sugar 1.15 g 1.60 g

Nutrient Resources 7

If you’re counting calories or carbs, celeriac contains less and is a good potato substitute.

In addition, celeriac has more of the following: 

  • Calcium
  • Iron
  • Zinc

Celeriac is literally the root of celery. At 9.2 grams of carbs, celery root is a great way to substitute potatoes from your plate. 

While it may not look pretty on the outside, once peeled it looks similar to a potato. Celeriac tastes great when baked in bite-sized pieces. It also makes a great mash and you can do the following:

  • Bake
  • Use in soups
  • Roast
celery root or celeriac
Low Carb Potato Substitutes – Celeriac (Celery root)

6. Butternut Squash

Butternut squash has 11.7 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams. Butternut squash has 4.0 grams fewer carbohydrates than potatoes per 100 grams.

Let’s take a look at their carbohydrates and nutrients.

  Potato, raw (100 g) Butternut squash, raw (100 g)
Calories 69 45
Protein 1.68 g 1.00 g
Carbohydrates 15.7 g 11.7 g
Fiber 2.4 g 2.0 g
Fat 0.10 g 0.10 g
Sugar 1.15 g 2.20 g

Nutrient Resources 8

Butternut squash is lower in calories and full of good things the body needs to function properly.

It contains more:

  • Calcium
  • Magnesium
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin A
  • Folate

When substituting it can be used for the following:

  • Mash
  • Roast
  • Air fry
  • Soups
  • Fries
  • Tots

In the stores, butternut squash can be found pre-cut for noodles, cubes and zig zags.

mashed butternut squash
Low Carb Potato Substitutes – Mashed butternut squash

7. Acorn Squash

Acorn squash has 10.4 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams, 5.3 grams fewer than potatoes.

Let’s examine the carbohydrates and nutrients side-by-side:

  Potato, raw (100 g) Acorn squash, raw (100 g)
Calories 69 40
Protein 1.68 g 0.80 g
Carbohydrates 15.7 g 10.4 g
Fiber 2.4 g 1.5 g
Fat 0.10 g 0.10 g
Sugar 1.15 g 2.46 g

Nutrient Resources 9

In addition, acorn squash has less calories than potatoes.

Acorn squash has more of the following: 

  • Calcium
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin A

Acorn squash can be substituted for potatoes for the following:

  • Mash
  • Roast
  • Bake
  • Air fryer
  • Fries
  • Tots

8. Broccoli

Broccoli has 6.2 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams, 9.5 grams fewer than potatoes.

Let’s examine the carbohydrates and nutrients side-by-side:

  Potato, raw (100 g) Broccoli, raw (100 g)
Calories 69 32
Protein 1.68 g 2.57 g
Carbohydrates 15.7 g 6.2 g
Fiber 2.4 g 2.4 g
Fat 0.10 g 0.34 g
Sugar 1.15 g 1.40 g

Nutrient Resources 10

Broccoli is another great option if you’re looking for a low-calorie alternative to potatoes. For 100 grams of both, broccoli has less than half the calories. It also carries significantly more of the following: 

  • Folate
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin K
  • Calcium

Broccoli also boasts a bit more protein than potatoes, so that’s a plus.

Broccoli makes a great mashed potato substitute. As a mash, picky kids even like it better than eating regular broccoli. 

Broccoli can also be roasted. Some people will remove half the number of potatoes and add in broccoli as a combination side dish.

mashed broccoli
Low Carb Potato Substitutes – Mashed broccoli

9. Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi has 6.2 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams, 9.5 grams fewer than potatoes.

Let’s examine the carbohydrates and nutrients side-by-side:

  Potato, raw (100 g) Kohlrabi, raw (100 g)
Calories 69 27
Protein 1.68 g 1.70 g
Carbohydrates 15.7 g 6.2 g
Fiber 2.4 g 3.6 g
Fat 0.10 g 0.10 g
Sugar 1.15 g 2.60 g

Nutrient Resources 11

In addition, kohlrabi has fewer calories than potatoes. They have similar protein and 50% more fiber.

Kohlrabi has more of the following: 

  • Calcium
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin A

Kohlrabi is a bulb-like root looking like an oversized spaceship. It tastes almost like a broccoli stem but better. Kohlrabi can be eaten raw.

Kohlrabi can be substituted for potatoes for the following:

  • Mash
  • Roast
  • Bake
  • Air fryer
  • Fries
  • Tots

10. Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts have 8.9 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams, 6.8 grams fewer than potatoes.

Let’s examine the carbohydrates and nutrients side-by-side:

  Potato, raw (100 g) Brussels sprouts, raw (100 g)
Calories 69 43
Protein 1.68 g 3.38 g
Carbohydrates 15.7 g 8.9 g
Fiber 2.4 g 3.8 g
Fat 0.10 g 0.30 g
Sugar 1.15 g 2.20 g

Nutrient Resources 12

Brussels sprouts are one of the few substitutes which contain fewer calories and carbohydrates but more protein and fiber.

In addition, brussels sprouts have more of the following: 

  • Calcium
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin A
  • Iron
  • Zinc
  • Folate

Brussels sprouts used to be a vegetable kids and many adults disliked eating. Now, it’s one of the most popular appetizers in many restaurants.

These little cabbages managed to turn around their reputation and become a hot topic in the food scene. A restaurant I frequently visit offers a Brussels sprouts salad that’s amazing.

Brussels sprouts can do many things potatoes can. You can bake them, boil them, fry them and roast them. You can even make mashed Brussels sprouts to replace your mashed potatoes.

11. Pumpkin

Pumpkin has 6.5 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams, 9.2 grams fewer than potatoes.

Let’s examine the carbohydrates and nutrients side-by-side:

  Potato, raw (100 g) Pumpkin, raw (100 g)
Calories 69 26
Protein 1.68 g 1.00 g
Carbohydrates 15.7 g 6.5 g
Fiber 2.4 g 0.5 g
Fat 0.10 g 0.10 g
Sugar 1.15 g 2.76 g

Nutrient Resources 13

If you’re counting calories or carbs, pumpkin is a good choice because it contains about half the amount of each.

Pumpkins are 90% water but have more of the following: 

  • Calcium
  • Vitamin A
  • Iron
  • Zinc

Pumpkins are typically used for soups, pies or bread but taste great mashed also. Many people think it’s a vegetable but its actually a fruit.

Fun fact: The largest pumpkin ever grown weighed 1,140 pounds.

Mashed pumpkins will taste sweeter than mashed potatoes. They are more like sweet potatoes for taste and texture. For better results use small sugar pumpkins instead of the large ones.

In addition to mashed, they can be cooked for the following:

  • Fries
  • Tots
  • Roasting
  • Baking

Find out the best russet potato substitutes in my article, Russet Potatoes Substitute: 13 Healthy Alternatives.

12. Kabocha

Kabocha has 8.2 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams, 7.5 grams fewer than potatoes.

Let’s examine the carbohydrates and nutrients side-by-side:

  Potato, raw (100 g) Kabocha, raw (100 g)
Calories 69 35
Protein 1.68 g 1.18 g
Carbohydrates 15.7 g 8.2 g
Fiber 2.4 g 1.2 g
Fat 0.10 g 0 g
Sugar 1.15 g 0 g

Nutrient Resources 14

If you’re counting calories or carbs, kabocha contains less and is a good potato substitute.

In addition, kabocha has more of the following: 

  • Calcium
  • Vitamin C
  • Potassium

The flesh is a dark yellow. It tastes like carrot and sweet potato mixed together. It’s slightly sweet but not as sweet as a sweet potato.

Favorite additions include the following:

  • Salt
  • Coconut oil
  • Cinnamon
  • Nondairy milk
  • Honey

Many people enjoy making small chunks called bites.They may also be mashed, roasted and baked.

Many low carb substitutes for sweet potatoes are different due to flavor. Check those out in my article, Keto Substitute for Sweet Potatoes: 8 Healthy Substitutes.

13. Zucchini

Zucchini has 3.1 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams, 12.6 grams fewer than potatoes.

Let’s examine the carbohydrates and nutrients side-by-side:

  Potato, raw (100 g) Zucchini, raw (100 g)
Calories 69 17
Protein 1.68 g 1.21 g
Carbohydrates 15.7 g 3.1 g
Fiber 2.4 g 1.0 g
Fat 0.10 g 0.32 g
Sugar 1.15 g 2.50 g

Nutrient Resources 15

If you’re counting calories or carbs, zucchini contains much less and is a good potato substitute.

In addition, zucchini has more of the following: 

  • Calcium
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Folate

With so many fewer carbs and calories you may be wondering why they aren’t discussed much as a potato substitute. It’s because you won’t be able to make anything tasting like mashed or baked potatoes.

Although you can definitely use zucchinis to make fantastic fries or tots. If you eat fries often, you can swap out the potato for zucchini to get that same satisfaction with far fewer carbs and calories. 

You can bake, deep-fry or air-fry the zucchini getting nice crispy zucchini fries. 

Some substitutes are different for Yukon Gold potatoes. Find out how in my article, Yukon Gold Potatoes Substitute: The 13 Best Alternatives.

Additional Resources 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27

Read Next – More Food Alternatives Articles!

Potato Flakes Substitutes: The 17 Best Alternatives

Mashed Potato Substitutes: 15 Healthy Alternatives

8 Healthy Sweet Potato Flour Substitutes

Alternatives To Sweet Potatoes: 16 Unbeatable Substitutes

Is It Permissible To Substitute Fruit For Vegetables?

 

Article Resources: Foods For Anti-Aging follows strict guidelines to ensure our content is the highest journalistic standard. It's our mission to provide the reader with accurate, honest and unbiased guidance. Our content relies on medical associations, research institutions, government agencies and study resources. Learn more by reading our editorial policy.
  1. USDA: Cauliflower, raw[]
  2. USDA: Potatoes, white, flesh and skin, raw[]
  3. USDA: Turnips, raw[]
  4. USDA: Rutabagas, raw[]
  5. USDA: Daikon radish, cooked[]
  6. USDA: Potatoes, baked, flesh, with salt[]
  7. USDA: Celeriac, raw[]
  8. USDA: Squash, winter, butternut, raw[]
  9. USDA: Squash, winter, acorn, raw[]
  10. USDA: Broccoli, raw[]
  11. USDA: Kohlrabi, raw[]
  12. USDA: Brussels sprouts, raw[]
  13. USDA: Pumpkin, raw[]
  14. USDA: Kabocha Squash[]
  15. USDA: Squash, summer, zucchini, includes skin, raw[]
  16. Wikipedia: Celeriac[]
  17. University of Illinois Extension: Pumpkins and More[]
  18. University of Illinois Extension: Winter Squash[]
  19. Wikipedia: Kabocha[]
  20. National Center for Biotechnology Information: White Vegetables: A Forgotten Source of Nutrients: Purdue Roundtable Executive Summary[]
  21. National Center for Biotechnology Information: Nutritional quality of organic, conventional, and seasonally grown broccoli using vitamin C as a marker[]
  22. Purdue University: Cauliflower[]
  23. Wikipedia: Rutabaga[]
  24. Harvard Health Publishing: The pros and cons of root vegetables[]
  25. Wikipedia: Daikon[]
  26. Cornell Cooperative Extension: Kohlrabi[]
  27. University of Maryland Extension: Summer Squash (Zucchini) []

Kevin Garce

Kevin Garce is a Certified Health Coach who encourages people by informing them on nutrition and food topics important to them. His years of research and knowledge inspire people to achieve their goals. Read more here About Me

Recent Posts