Low Carb and Keto Alternatives to Mashed Potatoes

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low carb keto alternatives to mashed potatoes in bowlsMashed potatoes are almost expected as part of a holiday spread. In fact, I would argue that mashed potatoes appear on more holiday tables than a turkey or roast, because even vegans will serve them. But, if you’ve been living more ancestrally and you’ve been keeping your carbs low, you may be looking for a low-carb alternative to mashed potatoes.

Whether you’re trying to lower your carb intake or just switch things up, why not try a different vegetable mash this season? Not to worry, each of these options makes a great vehicle for gravy, and we’re all in it for the gravy anyway, aren’t we?

Carbs in Mashed Potatoes

One cup of mashed potatoes contains 36.9 g of carbohydrates. After you subtract the fiber, you’re left with 33.6 g net carbs in mashed potatoes.

If you’re limiting carbs, just one serving of traditional mashed potatoes doesn’t leave room for much else.

Low-carb and Keto Alternatives to Traditional Mashed Potatoes

  • Cauliflower: 3.2g net carbs per cup
  • Broccoli: 3.6g net carbs per cup
  • Spaghetti squash: 5.5g net carbs per cup
  • Turnips: 6.1g net carbs per cup
  • Pumpkin: 6.9g net carbs per cup
  • Carrots: 8.7g net carbs per cup
  • Rutabaga: 8.9g net carbs per cup
  • Celery Root: 11.6g net carbs per cup
  • Butternut squash: 13.6g net carbs per cup
  • Parsnip: 17.4g net carbs per cup
  • Acorn squash: 21g net carbs per cup
  • Sweet potato: 22.8g net carbs per cup

low carb keto alternatives to mashed potatoes vegetable options

How to Prep Your Mash or Purée

chooped cauliflower and turnips for low carb keto alternatives to mashed potatoes

Boiling or Steaming

This option will work for any of the above veggies. Simply peel, slice, or chop your vegetable into uniform 1-inch pieces and fill a pot with water and bring to a boil on the stovetop. Carefully place the veggies in the water if boiling them or lower them into a steamer basket if steaming. The total time will vary depending upon the vegetable and how large you cut them, but once they are fork-tender, strain out the water and place the soft veggie pieces back into the pot.

boiled cauliflower for low carb keto alternatives to mashed potatoes


Roasting will work best for winter squash and sweet potato. Cut your squash in half or cubes and drizzle with avocado oil. Place on a sheet pan and roast in a 375-degree oven until tender. Scoop out the flesh.

roasted squash and sweet potatoes for low carb keto alternatives to mashed potatoes

To Mash

Place your veggies back in the pot you boiled them in or in a large bowl if you roasted them. Use a potato masher to begin to mash the veggies.

mashing cauliflower for low carb keto alternatives to mashed potatoes

Add a few tablespoons of butter and a little milk or dairy-free milk as needed to mash into a smooth texture. Some vegetables will mash more smoothly than others so the amount of time this takes will vary. Season with salt and pepper and you’re ready to eat!

mashing cauliflower in a pot for low carb keto alternatives to mashed potatoes

To Mash Your Veggies in a Food Processor

Place the boiled or roasted veggies in a food processor. Add butter and pulse or turn the processor on and begin processing the vegetables. Add a little milk or dairy-free milk if needed to achieve the proper consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

food processor squash for low carb keto alternatives to mashed potatoes

Flavorful Additions to Add to Your Mash

  • Roasted garlic
  • Crisp-fried sage
  • Fresh herbs of any kind, but especially rosemary, thyme, sage, or parsley
  • Coconut milk
  • Tahini paste
  • Cinnamon
  • Maple syrup

low carb keto alternatives to mashed potatoes

Are Potatoes Keto?

Because potatoes contain over 30 g of carbs per cup, potatoes are not considered keto. You would have to eat an extremely small, unsatisfying amount of potatoes to stay in ketosis.

low carb keto alternatives to mashed potatoes in bowls



About the Author

A food blogger, recipe developer, and personal chef based in Missouri, Priscilla specializes in low-carb, Paleo, gluten-free, keto, vegetarian, and low FODMAP cooking. See what she’s cooking on Priscilla Cooks, and follow her food adventures on Instagram and Pinterest.

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