Rice Cakes on the Keto Diet: Are These “Low-Cal” Snacks Too High in Carbs?


Carb restriction is the foremost rule of the keto diet. Rice is a starchy food, so rice cakes naturally have significant carbs per serving. Thus, are rice cakes keto-friendly? No, they are not.

When on keto, every carb counts, and rice cakes can be a tricky snack to fit into your limited carb quota. Are chocolate rice cakes keto-friendly? No. What about plain rice cakes? Again, no.

If you think about it, nothing made of rice could be a good fit for keto. On the contrary, rice cakes are low in calories and only have traces of fat, which makes them a suitable snack for individuals trying to lose weight. So why can’t we make rice cakes work for keto? 

are rice cakes keto

Rice Cakes

Serving Size: 1 rice cake (9g)

not keto

Net Carbs








Are Rice Cakes Keto?

Ever wondered, “Are rice cakes keto?” The quick answer is no. Rice cakes are higher in carbohydrates than what’s typically allowed on the ketogenic diet. A single rice cake contains 7.2 grams of net carbs. On a strict ketogenic diet, your daily carb intake should be below 20g, so even one small rice cake would take up a significant portion of your carb allowance.

What makes a food item keto-friendly? It’s all about the net carbs – total carbs minus dietary fiber. Foods with fewer than 8g of net carbs per serving are keto-friendly. Unfortunately, neither white nor brown rice cakes fall into this category due to their high carb content.

The main ingredient in most rice cakes is puffed rice or cooked white rice flour – grain-based foods high in carbs and low in healthy fats and protein sources essential for the keto diet. So while caramel rice cakes or plain ones might be tempting, they may hinder your fat-burning and weight-loss efforts if you’re on a low-carb or no-carb diet like keto.

All’s not lost, though! You can still enjoy a crunchy snack on your low-carb journey. Swap out those golden brown rice crackers for almond flour cheese crisps or sour cream dip with vegetables. These have fewer carbs, more fiber, and healthy fats, potentially beneficial for blood sugar control and overall health.

If you’re looking to eat healthier but not follow the keto guidelines strictly, eating a single rice cake as part of a balanced meal might work for you. Remember that sticking to whole grains is better for preventing heart disease and maintaining a healthy weight.

To summarize, Are brown or white rice cakes keto-friendly? No, due to their high net carbohydrate content. But don’t worry! Many delicious alternatives are available that will keep you satisfied while adhering to your keto diet plan.

Pros Of Eating Rice Cakes On The Keto Diet

  • Rice cakes are low in calories, which can aid in weight loss.
  • They are fat-free, which can help maintain a healthy heart.
  • Rice cakes have a low glycemic index, preventing blood sugar spikes.
  • They are sodium-free, which is beneficial for maintaining normal blood pressure levels.
  • Rice cakes are gluten-free and can be consumed by individuals with celiac disease or wheat allergies.

Cons Of Eating Rice Cakes On The Keto Diet

  • Rice cakes contain a high amount of carbohydrates, which can quickly exceed the daily carb limit on the keto diet.
  • They have little fiber content, so their net carb count is high.
  • Rice cakes are typically low in protein and fat, which are crucial macronutrients in a ketogenic diet.
  • They tend to have little nutritional value and do not provide many vitamins or minerals.
  • Consuming rice cakes may spike blood sugar levels due to their high glycemic index, disrupting ketosis.

The Benefits Of Rice Cakes

Rice cakes, including brown rice cakes and white rice cakes, are typically made from puffed rice or rice flour. A single rice cake contains about 7.2 grams of net carbs. This is significant considering that the keto diet involves limiting your daily net carbohydrates to only 20g.

  • Low in Fat: Rice cakes are low in total fat, with only 0.3g per serving.
  • Low Calorie: With only 35 calories per cake, they can aid in weight loss if you’re aiming for a calorie deficit.
  • Dietary Fiber: While the fiber content isn’t massive (<1g), it contributes to overall dietary fiber intake, which may help regulate blood sugar levels and maintain a healthy weight.

Despite these benefits associated with eating rice cakes, they aren’t the best fit for low-carb diets or strict ketogenic diet plans because of the high carb count. They contain fewer carbs than cooked white rice but are still too many for those on no-carb diet sessions aimed at fat-burning and weight loss.

Instead of caramel rice cakes or plain ones, consider keto-friendly alternatives like cheese crisps made from almond flour or veggies with sour cream and cream cheese as toppings. These have essential nutrients and healthy fats without tipping your carbohydrate balance!

In that case, sadly, these also won’t fit into your daily net carb content limit if following a strict ketogenic diet plan.

The key takeaway? While a tasty snack option for fitness enthusiasts aiming for a healthy diet rich in whole grain foods – when it comes to determining if rice cakes are keto friendly – they fall short due to their relatively high carbohydrate content compared to protein sources and healthy fats necessary for maintaining overall health and preventing heart disease.

Alternatives To Rice Cakes On The Keto Diet

1. Almond Flour Flatbread

Almond flour flatbread is a great alternative to rice cakes for those on a keto diet. It’s low in net carbs and high in healthy fats, making it ideal for those trying to keep their carb intake down.

2. Cheese Crisps

Cheese crisps are another fantastic choice; they’re low in carbs yet packed with satisfying flavor. They offer protein, which rice cakes lack, helping you feel fuller longer.

3. Kim’s Magic Pop.

Kim’s Magic Pop is a versatile, low-carb option that can replace rice cakes. Available at grocery stores, it has fewer carbs and provides essential nutrients.

4. Sour Cream with Celery

Sour cream with celery makes for an excellent snack on the keto diet. This combination is low in net carbohydrates while providing dietary fiber and healthy fats.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are rice cakes suitable for a keto diet?

No, rice cakes are not suitable for a keto diet. They are high in carbohydrates and low in fat, which is the opposite of what you should be consuming on a ketogenic diet.

What is the carbohydrate content of rice cakes?

Rice cakes typically contain around 22 grams of carbs per serving. Since keto diets usually limit carb intake to about 20-50 grams daily, eating just one serving can use up nearly all your daily allowance.

How can I replace rice cakes while following a ketogenic diet?

You can substitute rice cakes with snacks that are higher in fat and lower in carbs. These alternatives could include nuts and seeds, cheese, olives, avocados, or low-carb vegetables with high-fat dips.

Why do some people think rice cakes are good for a keto diet?

Many people associate rice cakes with healthy eating because they are low in calories and fat. However, they are not appropriate for a ketogenic diet due to their high carbohydrate content which could interfere with ketosis.

Can I consume rice cakes if I’m doing targeted or cyclical ketogenic diets (TKD/CKD)?

In specific circumstances like TKD or CKD, where you strategically include more carbs at certain times, there might be room for small foods like rice cakes. However, these versions of the ketogenic diet require careful planning and aren’t recommended for beginners.


Apparently, rice cakes are not the crunchy, guilt-free snack option you hoped for on the keto diet. There are no keto rice cakes, nor are quaker rice cakes keto-friendly.

One standard rice cake (weighing approximately 9 grams) contains about 7.2 grams of carbohydrates. This might not seem like much at first glance, but that’s actually quite a hefty portion when you’re only allowed 20 grams of carbs daily.  

Rice cakes are nearly fat-free, low in calories, and void of sodium; these qualities make them a good option for many weight loss programs, but keto isn’t one of them.

If you’re craving a tasteful, light, and crunchy snack during keto, you should try cheese crisps or almond flour flatbread.