If you’re watching your carb intake or following a specific diet plan, you may be wondering, “how many carbs in spinach?”

Spinach is a leafy green vegetable that has been used for centuries in multiple cuisines around the world. It’s low in calories and high in nutrients, making it an excellent choice for health-conscious individuals. 

See also 9 Dangers of Refined Carbs You Shouldn’t Ignore and 10 Low-Carb Fruits for a Diabetes-Friendly Diet.

In this article, we’ll explore the carbohydrate content of spinach and provide some tips on incorporating this delicious vegetable into your meals while staying within your carb requirements.

bunch of spinach leaves with roots

Spinach Nutrition Facts

Available Nutrients

1 cup (30g) of Raw Spinach contains

1 cup (180g) of Boiled Spinach contains

  • Calories
6.9 41.4
  • Total Carbs



  • Protein

0.9 grams, or 2% of the DV

5.3g or 11% of DV

  • Fiber

0.7 grams, or 3% of the DV

4.3 g or 17% of the DV

  • Vitamin K

145mcg, or 181% of the DV

889mcg or 1111% of DV

  • Vitamin A
2813IU, or 56% of the DV 18867IU or 377% of DV
  • Folate

58.2mcg, or 15% of the DV

263mcg, or 66% of the DV

  • Vitamin C

8.4mg, or 14% of the DV

176mg, or 29% of the DV

  • Vitamin E

0.6mg, or 3% of the DV

3.7mg, or 19% of the DV

  • Vitamin B6

0.1mg, or 3% of the DV

0.4mg, or 22% of the DV

  • Riboflavin

0.1mg, or 3% of the DV

0.4mg, or 25% of the DV

  • Niacin

0.2mg, or 1% of the DV

0.9mg, or 4% of the DV

  • Manganese

0.3mg, or 13% of the DV

1.7mg, or 84% of the DV

  • Magnesium

23.7mg, or 6% of the DV

157mg, or 39% of the DV

  • Iron

0.8mg, or 5% of the DV

6.4mg, or 36% of the DV

  • Potassium

167mg, or 5% of the DV

839mg, or 24% of the DV

  • Calcium

29.7mg, or 3% of the DV

245mg, or 24% of the DV

  • Phosphorus

14.7mg, or 1% of the DV

101mg, or 10% of the DV

Spinach is also rich in various antioxidant compounds, including:

  • Kaempferol
  • Lutein
  • Quercetin
  • Zeaxanthin
  • Nitrates

Wet fresh green baby spinach leaves on a wooden background, close up.

How Many Carbs in Spinach?

According to the findings above, one cup (30 grams) of raw spinach contains about 7 grams of calories and only 1 gram of carbohydrates.

This is because spinach primarily consists of water, fiber, and protein with very little fat and carbohydrate content.

On the other hand, a cup (180g) of boiled spinach contains a slightly higher amount with 41 calories and about 8 grams of carbs. This is because cooked spinach has lost most of its water, making it denser in nutrients and volume than raw spinach.

Whether you eat it raw or cooked, spinach can be a great addition to any low-carb diet or keto. So, if you’re following a low-carb diet or trying to watch your carb intake for any other reason, rest assured that spinach won’t sabotage your efforts.

That being said, some spinach preparations can be high in calories.

For example, creamed spinach can have up to twice the calories in boiled spinach per serving due to added ingredients like heavy cream.

Similarly, sautéed or stir-fried spinach might be cooked with unhealthy fats or oils that are high in calories, increasing its overall carb content.

How Many Net Carbs in Spinach vs Total Carbs

The net carbs in spinach would be the carbohydrate content that your body can digest and use for energy. 

To calculate net carbs, subtract the fiber content from the total carbohydrate count. This is because fiber is not digested by your body and does not contribute to your overall carb intake.

For example, the total carbs in a cup of raw spinach is 1.1 grams, while the fiber is 0.7 grams. So your net carbs in a cup of raw spinach will be 1.1 grams – 0.7 grams = 0.4 grams.

On the other hand, total carbs include all types of carbohydrates present in food, including simple sugars and complex carbohydrates like fiber.

Should You Count Net Carbs or Total carbs?

According to experts, counting net carbs can be a misleading, inaccurate, and unnecessary approach to planning your meals. Instead, they recommend counting total carbs with your food coming from unprocessed or minimally processed whole foods.

Spinach and Weight loss

It is no secret that spinach is a nutrient-rich food. It is packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that have been linked to various health benefits. In addition to that, spinach can enhance your weight loss efforts.

Here are some ways in which spinach can help you lose weight:

  • Spinach is low in calories. One cup of cooked spinach contains only 41 calories. This makes it a great food for those trying to lose weight.
  • Spinach is high in fiber. Fiber helps keep you feeling full after eating, which can help you eat less overall, causing you to lose weight.
  • Spinach may boost metabolism. Metabolism is the process by which your body converts food into energy. A high metabolism means that your body can burn more calories, and a low metabolism means that your body burns fewer calories. Iron is an essential nutrient for maintaining a healthy metabolism, and spinach is a good source of iron. So including it in your diet can help boost your metabolism.


Why is Eating Spinach Good for You?

Spinach is very high in vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants, making it a very nutritious and healthy vegetable to add to your diet. Here are some of the health benefits of spinach.

1. Very high in antioxidants

Antioxidants are compounds that fight free radical damage in the body. Free radicals are unstable molecules that can easily pair with other molecules in the body, causing reactions that can end in cell damage. Antioxidants work by pairing with the free radicals, and instead of causing damaging reactions, they actually make them more stable and unable to react. This can help prevent various chronic conditions that can occur as a result.

2. Spinach can boost eye health

Dark leafy greens like kale and spinach are good sources of key antioxidants for eye health, namely lutein and zeaxanthin.

Lutein and zeaxanthin are two antioxidants that are crucial for maintaining the health of your eyes. These powerful nutrients work together to protect the eyes from damage caused by harmful blue light and other environmental factors.

Research has shown that lutein and zeaxanthin may help reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of blindness in older adults. These antioxidants can also help to improve visual acuity, enhance contrast sensitivity, and reduce glare sensitivity.

According to various studies, lutein and zeaxanthin may even help reverse existing damage.

In addition to their eye-protective benefits, lutein and zeaxanthin also have anti-inflammatory properties that can benefit overall health. They may help to lower the risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.

Spinach with roots on the wooden background.

3. Spinach may prevent various forms of cancer

When it comes to cancer-fighting foods, spinach is one of the superstars. This leafy green vegetable is packed with nutrients that can help protect your body against the disease. 

For example, spinach is a good source of antioxidants, which are substances that scavenge harmful compounds from your body. These elements can damage cells and lead to cancer. 

Spinach is also rich in vitamins A and C, two nutrients that have been shown to boost immunity and help prevent cancer.

Additionally, spinach contains glycoglycerolipids MGDG and SQDG that have been shown to offer anti-cancer benefits, including inhibiting cancer cell proliferation and reducing the size of the tumor.

4. Spinach can lower your blood pressure

In high blood pressure, your arteries are often constricted and tense, meaning the heart has to pump blood harder to be able to get it through the narrowed vessels. However, certain nutrients in food, such as spinach, can help reduce pressure and promote normal blood flow.

Spinach is a good source of nitrates, natural compounds that convert to nitric oxide when digested. Nitric oxide can ease the tension within the blood vessel walls causing relaxation and dilatation. This will allow blood to flow more freely and at low pressure.

As a result, consuming spinach can help lower the risk of various heart conditions like heart disease and stroke.

5. Spinach can boost digestive health

Eating spinach can boost your digestive health in a number of ways. 

The high fiber content of spinach helps to keep things moving through your system, while the antioxidants and vitamins present can help reduce inflammation and protect the lining of the digestive tract. 

Spinach is also a good prebiotic source, which feeds the beneficial bacteria in your gut and promotes a healthy balance. 

Finally, spinach contains magnesium, a mineral that plays a role in muscle relaxation. This can help relieve symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), such as abdominal cramping or discomfort.

With all these benefits, adding spinach to your diet is an easy way to improve your gut health and keep things running smoothly.

6. Spinach is a good source of vitamin K

Vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin that plays an important role in blood clotting processes. It does this by making various proteins that bring about coagulation, the process by which the body forms clots to stop bleeding, such as in the case of a cut. This can help prevent too much blood loss and promote faster wound healing.

Vitamin K can also regulate calcium levels, keeping it in your bones and out of the blood vessels, which can help maintain strong bones and teeth.

Additionally, vitamin K can boost bone metabolism or the process of bone formation by increasing bone formation markers and stimulating osteoblast differentiation. Osteoblasts are bone-building cells that often differentiate into osteocytes after forming a new bone. Osteocytes then help maintain bone mass b regulating the accumulation of bone minerals, thus promoting strong and healthy bones.

7.  Spinach can help boost your iron levels

Iron is an essential mineral that the body needs to make hemoglobin, which is a part of red blood cells. Hemoglobin carries oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body. 

Iron can also boost brain function and the production of important brain chemicals, boost muscle function, regulate body temperature, boost immunity, and treat fatigue.

With a cup of cooked spinach providing up to 36% of your daily requirement, spinach can be a healthy and easy way to boost your intake of this important mineral.

8. Spinach is a natural detoxifier

Detoxifying your body is important for maintaining good health and preventing disease. Spinach is a great food to help with detoxification because it is high in chlorophyll.

Chlorophyll is a green pigment found in plants that helps them absorb sunlight and convert it into energy. 

This pigment also has detoxifying properties that can help remove toxins from your body, including heavy metals and chemicals. 

Spinach is also a good fiber source, which helps move toxins through your digestive system and out of your body.

spinach plants in garden close up

How to add spinach to a low-calorie diet

If you’re looking to add more spinach to your diet but are worried about the calories, there are some easy ways to do it without sacrificing taste or nutrition. 

  • Swap out another leafy green vegetable in a recipe for spinach. For example, if a recipe calls for kale, try using spinach instead.
  • Add spinach to smoothies or juices. This is a great way to get the nutrients from spinach without having to eat it plain. Just add a handful of spinach leaves to your favorite smoothie recipe and blend. 
  • Sneak some spinach into sauces and dressings by pureeing it first and then adding it in. 
  • Add spinach to your morning tofu scramble. 
  • Make a simple spinach salad for lunch or as a side dish. Just top some fresh spinach leaves with diced tomatoes, onions, vegan cheese, and your favorite dressing.
  • Sneak spinach into your favorite pasta dish by adding it to the sauce or mixing it into the cooked noodles.

Spinach Recipes to try:

  1. Aloo Palak (Potato and Spinach Curry)

  2. Spinach Artichoke Dip Potato Salad

  3. Tomato Spinach Pasta

  4. Vegan Pumpkin Gnocchi with Spinach Sauce

Final Thoughts

Spinach is a highly nutritious vegetable that is low in calories and rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. It is also a great source of dietary fiber and contains only a small amount of carbohydrates.

So whether you are following a low-carb diet or just trying to eat healthier, adding spinach to your meals can provide numerous health benefits without compromising your carb intake.

You can enjoy this versatile leafy green in salads, smoothies, soups, or sautés – it’s an easy way to boost the nutritional value of any meal!

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