When it comes to eating a low-carb diet, you need to pay attention to your carb intake. Popular foods that most people consume on the regular 2,000-calorie diet may not fit into your carb-restricted diet. Today, we will look at one of the usuals in your daily diet and how many carbs are in different rice dishes.
If you are a fan of Chinese or Asian dishes, you probably have seen fried rice one too many times on the menu. But have you ever stopped and asked yourself the nutritional value of this rice? No? Well, I wondered and prepared today’s read on all things cooked rice.
From this article, I’ll discuss how many carbs in fried rice. We will also look at the different recipes and their carbohydrate content. Finally, I will give you a low-carb option you can add to your keto diet to keep your carbohydrate intake low.
How Many Carbs in Fried Rice?
White rice is generally known to have a high carbohydrate content. Brown rice, on the other hand, has fewer calories and a lower carbohydrate content. What stands out in fried rice over brown rice and white rice?
Fried rice is cooked rice that has been stir-fried and contains extra ingredients like vegetables, seafood, eggs, or meat. These additions increase fried rice’s nutritional value by increasing the nutritional content of its dishes. But what is their impact on the rice’s carb content?
Having mentioned Asian restaurants and how fried rice is the star of the show in these places, I must differentiate between Chinese-style fried rice and Japanese-style fried rice.
- Chinese rice: This style uses the long grain type of rice like Basmati rice and Jasmine. These grains are fluffy and dry and less sticky when cooked. The Chinese long-grain variety is often used as a side.
- Japanese rice: Of the two types of rice, this is the sticky variety. It is cooked using short-grain rice. It is stickier and starchier than Chinese rice. These types of rice are used to make risotto and pudding.
Before we look at how many carbs in fried rice, let’s mention the different fried recipes available and what they contain.
Vegetable Fried Rice
This is a popular add to the balanced diet of plant-based eaters. This type is made by incorporating a mix of vegetables that can elevate the nutritional value of your food. There’s a variety of vegetables you can choose from including green onions, carrots, bell peppers, and green peas with vegetable oil.
The colorful vegetables are just meant for you to feast your eyes on. Food is meant to stimulate all your senses, and fresh vegetables do the trick to your sight.
This is the type of rice that incorporates beef into your cooked rice. Your choice of protein can make your meal healthier. Animal protein sources are considered the best healthy proteins since they contain all essential amino acids that your body can’t make and has to get from the diet. The bonus point is, beef is low carb.
For those looking to put leftover rice to good use, egg-fried rice is their way to go! And the best part is you will be increasing the protein content of your food, without increasing the carb count of food. All you need is eggs, rice, cooking oil, and soy sauce!
On a low-calorie diet, it is a great idea to opt for lean proteins over red meats or processed meats. One of the best lean protein sources is seafood. You can add squid, lobsters, prawns, shrimp, and crab balls as your lean proteins. The dish also has fish sauce as an ingredient.
If you are not a big fan of seafood, there are other lean protein sources you can choose from. One perfect example is adding extra-lean ground chicken to your cooked cereals. Chicken is top of the chart as the best source of protein you can add to your diet.
Are there other varieties of this grain I may have missed?
Carbs in Fried Rice 1 Cup
When you compare the grams of carbohydrates in white rice or brown rice to that of fried rice, the fried kind has more carbs compared to the rice cooked without meat or vegetable. The extra ingredients will not only add fat, protein, fiber, and other nutrients to your meal but also added carbohydrates. Moreover, more ingredients mean a higher calorie content which is not a good choice for a low-calorie diet.
Let’s start at the basics, how many carbs in a cup of cooked white rice?
Calorie and Carb Count in White Rice
A cup serving of cooked rice (medium-grain) provides you with:
- Energy: 242 kcals
- Total carbs: 53.2 grams of carbs
- Dietary fiber: 0.6 grams of fiber
- Net carbs: 52.6 grams of carbs
- Protein: 4.43 grams of protein
- Fat: 0.391 grams of fat
Considering low-carb diets like keto restricts carbohydrate intake to 20-50 grams per day, adding grains would have you exceeding these limits.
Calories and Carb Count in Brown Rice
Brown rice without meat or vegetables is still considered healthier than its white counterpart. One cup serving will give you:
- Energy: 218 kcals
- Total carbs: 45.8 g of carbs
- Dietary fiber: 3.51 g of fiber
- Net carbs: 42.29 g of carbs
- Protein: 4.52 g of protein
- Fat: 1.62 g of fat
Despite this variety having a higher fat, protein, fiber, and nutrition content and lower carb and calorie count, it is still considered a high-carb food.
1 Cup Vegetable Fried Rice Calories
How many carbs in fried rice without meat but with extra vegetables? How many more calories do frozen vegetables add to your rice? One cup of rice fried meatless gives you 289 kcals, 54 g of carbs, 1.83 g of fiber, and 1.03 grams of sugar.
In terms of protein and fat content, you will get 6.37 g of protein and 5.3 g of fat. Adding green peas with vegetable oil may boost protein and fat intake, but it increases carb intake as well.
How Many Calories in Fried Rice with Eggs
A popular dish in Chinese cuisine, let’s see how incorporating eggs into your rice will affect the calorie content of this food. How many carbs in fried rice with eggs? According to the USDA, one cup serving of rice fried with eggs provides:
- Energy: 290 kcals
- Total carbs: 47 g
- Dietary fiber: 1.96 g
- Net carbs: 45.04 g
- Protein: 6.01 g
- Fat: 9 g
Eggs are a low-carb food. Adding them to your cereal recipe also increases fat, protein, fiber, and essential nutrients in food. Although the amounts of fiber have increased lowering the net carbs compared to other recipes, the carb content is still too high and can spike blood sugars.
Chicken Fried Rice Calories 100g
Chicken, like eggs, is low in carbs. What effects does incorporating chicken into cereal dishes have on net carbs (non-fiber carbs)? Will chicken increase the amount of fiber per cup?
A 100 g portion size of fried rice with chicken contains:
- Energy: 173 kcals
- Total carbohydrates: 27.6 g
- Fiber: 0.9 g
- Net carbs: 26.7 g
- Protein: 7.28 g
- Fat: 3.66 g
The numbers may look smaller in this portion size, but they translate to 343 kcals and 58.82 g of net carbs per cup serving. Chicken may be an excellent source of proteins and a nutritious low-carb food but frying it with this grain does not make the entire dish low-carb.
Is Fried Rice Good for Diabetics?
People struggling with regulating their blood glucose are normally advised to avoid rice. However, does incorporating high-fiber vegetables or low-carb meats to it make it okay for diabetics? Whether it is beef, veggies, or chicken, the carb content of fried rice is still high.
White rice has a glycemic index of 89 while brown rice’s is 50-55. However, the brown variety has a glycemic load of 36.5 which means it can spike insulin and glucose levels. The glycemic load of white rice is 56. Fried rice has a lower glycemic index compared to boiled rice due to its higher fat content. Its glycemic index is 80.
Diabetics should consider cauliflower rice as a low-carb substitute for regular rice. Cauliflower rice has a glycemic index of 0-15. You can incorporate your lean protein and non-starchy veggies with it to keep your carb intake and blood glucose in check.
How many carbs in fried rice? Too high to incorporate on keto or weight-loss diets. The takeaway point is adding low-carb foods to starchy ones does not make the entire dish low in carbohydrates. Fried rice, whether cooked with white or brown rice has a high carb count and should be avoided when trying to lose weight or regulate blood sugar. Cauliflower rice is the best replacement for it.
Have you made fried cauliflower rice? If yes, please share the recipe and reviews in the comments!