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Low Carb Substitutes for Potatoes

Looking for low carb substitutes for potatoes that actually taste good? 

Potatoes are a classic comfort food, but due to their high carb content, they’re sadly off limits for those on a low-carb or keto diet. Luckily, there are plenty of low carb alternatives to potatoes that can satisfy your cravings for spuds without derailing your macro goals. 

A bowl of radish potato salad.
Radish Potato Salad

As someone who has been on a low-carb diet for many years now, I’ve narrowed down my top-five favorite low carb substitutes for potatoes in this list. These alternatives not only have a similar texture and taste to potatoes, but they also offer more nutritional value and a lower carb count.

I’ll not only share these delicious low-carb alternatives but I’m also sharing some of my favorite dishes that you can make with them. Plus, some tips on how to potato-fy them!

Why Look for Low-Carb Potato Alternatives?

Although traditional potatoes are darn delicious, they are a starchy vegetable that can quickly spike your blood sugar due to their high glycemic index. They are also relatively low in fiber, protein, and other essential nutrients, which means they’re not a great choice for diabetics, those seeking weight loss, or people who follow a low carb diet.

A large potato (skin-on) contains about 56 grams of net carbs, which is way more than what most people on a low-carb or ketogenic diet can consume in one day. By swapping out potatoes for delicious low-carb alternatives, you can reduce your carb intake while still enjoying similar flavors and textures in your meals.

A bowl of air fryer Mediterranean vegetables with toppings over a gray marble surface.
Air Fryer Mediterranean Vegetables

My Top 5 Low Carb Potato Substitutes

These keto-friendly vegetables may not 100% take the place of potatoes, but they come pretty close when we’re considering taste, texture and versatility. There’s also a variety of dishes you can make with them, from mashed faux-tatoes to crispy fries. Let’s check them out!

1. Cauliflower

A plate of whole roasted cauliflower on a gray marble surface.
Whole Roasted Cauliflower

Probably the most well-known low-carb substitute for potatoes, cauliflower is a versatile and nutritious vegetable that can be easily transformed into various potato-like dishes. Its mild flavor makes it awesome for dishes like cauliflower mash and cauliflower rice. 

Your food processor is your friend when making cauliflower mash, as it helps to create a smooth and creamy texture. I like to use my Cuisinart 8-cup food processor to get that perfect creamy texture. Of course, I recommend adding some melted butter, heavy cream, and cheese to make it over-the-top delicious.

It’s also amazing how delicious cauliflower is in its natural form. This Whole Roasted Cauliflower (Middle Eastern) doesn’t quite taste like roasted potatoes, but it is a statement piece that’s perfect for sharing. Plus, it’s keto-friendly and plant-based!

2. Radishes

Radish potato salad in a bowl.
Radish Potato Salad

Believe it or not, this sweet root vegetable is a great replacement for potatoes in dishes like roasted radishes and hash browns. When cooked, the sharp peppery taste mellows out and becomes sweeter, almost resembling potatoes. 

There are two types of radishes to consider: red radishes and daikon radishes. Both boast incredible health benefits but serve different purposes as a potato replacement. Red radishes are great for roasting and have a texture similar to potatoes when cooked, while daikon radishes work best in dishes like cauliflower mash where they can be mashed and seasoned just like potatoes.

I use red radishes in my tasty Radish Potato Salad recipe. I boil them just like I would potatoes and add in some hard-boiled eggs, celery, mayo, Dijon, etc. for a delicious and low-carb side dish!

3. Turnips

Turnips have a slightly bitter taste but a wonderful texture when cooked, and they’re another low-carb potato substitute that won’t disappoint. When cooked and mashed, they lose their crunchy texture and are similar to cauliflower mash, but with a unique flavor profile. 

You can bake them, boil them, or steam them. I like to prepare them au gratin style, with some heavy cream, cheese, and spices for a tasty side. 

If this is your first time making turnips, I recommend trying this low-carb vegetable mashed first. Peel and cut the vegetables into chunks, then boil them until they become tender and easily mashable. Add butter, salt, pepper, and garlic and you’re golden.

4. Zucchini

Zucchini fritters in a mustard colored dish with dip.
Low Carb Zucchini Fritters

While zucchini can’t be mashed like the other alternatives, it can mimic the taste of potatoes when sliced into thin strips or roasted into zucchini fries. Zucchini is also a great source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, making it a healthier option than potatoes. 

The key to getting zucchini crispy is getting rid of the excess moisture. After slicing or chopping it, let it sit on a paper towel for a few minutes to absorb any water. You can then bake or air-fry them until they become golden brown and crispy.

You could even take it a step further and make these delicious Low Carb Zucchini Fritters, which are similar to hashbrowns or tater tots. If you’re as big of a fan of hatchback potatoes as I am, this Thomas Keller Zucchini recipe could scratch that itch!

5. Butternut Squash

A bowl of roasted butternut squash soup with feta.
Roasted Feta Soup with Butternut Squash

Butternut squash is a great substitute for potatoes as it has a similar texture and can be used in a variety of dishes. You can roast it, mash it, make fries out of it, and even use it in soups and stews. 

To cook butternut squash as a potato alternative, peel and dice the squash into small cubes. Then boil or steam them until they become tender. From there, you can season and mash them as you would potatoes. For fries, simply cut the squash into thin strips, toss them in olive oil and seasonings of your choice, and bake them in the oven until crispy.

Their sweet and nutty flavor pairs well with savory dishes, and they are packed with nutrients. If you love potato soups, you’d love it in my Roasted Feta Soup with Butternut Squash recipe. 

What are some other substitutes for starches?

It’s important to have go-to low-carb alternatives to starches like rice, pasta, and potatoes. I’ve tried so many brands that lack in taste, texture, and nutrition. 

I was tired of settling for mediocre substitutes, so I created my own brand, Kaizen. It offers low-carb rice and pasta with a whopping 20 grams of protein and only 6 grams of net carbs! Made from lupini beans, Kaizen products are gluten-free, vegan, and non-GMO. 

While Kaizen is my favorite (biases aside), there are plenty of other starch substitutes out on the market. Check out my guides, The Best Low Carb Pasta: A Review of the Options and Best Low Carb Rice Alternatives, for more options and reviews.

Kaizen Lowcarb Protein Pasta

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