Carbs and Calories in Tomato Paste: Is Tomato Paste Keto Friendly?


tomato paste keto

Tomato paste has a reasonably moderate carb count per serving and can be factored into a low carb diet, like Keto.  Adding a few tablespoons into your recipes or even a small can is fine because this amount would be used in a whole pot of soup, stew, chili, or sauce.  Each serving would only contain a fraction of the carbs.

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For instance, a whole can of tomato paste containing 32 grams of carbs might be used to make a whole pot of soup that makes 8 servings.  Once the carbs are spread out, each bowl would only yield a little over 4 grams of carbs, which is completely reasonable on the Keto diet.  (The fiber contained in tomato paste also lowers the total net carbs.)   

How Many Carbs are in Tomato Paste?

  • One tablespoon of tomato paste contains 3 grams of carbs.
  • A 100 gram serving of tomato paste contains 19 grams of carbs.
  • One 6-ounce can of tomato paste contains 32 grams of carbs.

How Many Calories are in Tomato Paste?

  • One tablespoon of tomato paste contains 18 calories.
  • A 100 gram serving of tomato paste contains 82 calories.
  • One 6-ounce can of tomato paste contains 139 calories.

What is Tomato Paste?

Tomato paste is a thick condensed paste made by stewing tomatoes for hours to reduce the water in the tomatoes.  Seeds and skins are strained out and then the tomatoes are cooked again to reduce further until you’re left with a thick concentrated paste.  Tomato paste enhances a number of dishes and when caramelized, it adds a delicious robust flavor.

Nutrition Facts

Based on 1 can of Tomato Paste, 6 ounces (170 g)
Calories 139
Total Fat 0.8 grams 1%
Saturated fat 0.2 grams 1%
Polyunsaturated fat 0.3 grams
Monounsaturated fat 0.1 grams
Cholesterol 0 milligrams 0%
Sodium 100.3 milligrams 4%
Potassium 1723.8 milligrams 49%
Total Carbohydrate 32 grams 10%
Dietary fiber 7 grams 28%
Sugar 21 grams
Protein 7 grams 14%
Vitamin A 51% Vitamin C 62%
Calcium 6% Iron 28%
Vitamin D 0% Vitamin B-6 20%
Cobalamin 0% Magnesium 17%

Ingredients

A 6-ounce can of Hunt’s Natural Tomato Paste contains only 20 mg of natural sodium per serving. Ingredients: Tomato Paste, Less than 2% of: Spices, Natural Flavors, Citric Acid. 

Other brands may include olive oil, salt, lemon juice and preservatives.

Popular Brands

  • Hunts
  • Amore 
  • Cento 
  • Redpack 
  • Contadina 
  • Rienzi 
  • Leggo’s
  • Gino

Health Benefits

tomato paste calories

Overview

Tomato paste offers a number of nutritional benefits, containing a wide range of minerals, vitamins and lipids.   Studies show that cooked tomato products like tomato paste has higher levels of lycopene, one important antioxidant that is known for its protective effect against various types of cancer.  Lycopene also promotes skin health by protecting against UV damage.  Tomato paste is also rich in carotenoids, which protect the heart and also promoting skin health. 

High in Antioxidants:

The stewing of tomato paste helps your body better absorb its important antioxidant compounds and increases the lycopene content.  Lycopene fights inflammatory diseases and reduces the risk of cancer, especially prostate cancer.

Benefits for Skin:

Another advantage of regularly consuming tomato paste is its amazing ability of preventing sunburn by more than 40% due to the carotenoids contained in tomato paste, including lycopene. 

High Cholesterol:

The carotenoids that are abundant in tomato paste help support heart health by decreasing the levels of LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) in the body.  Carotenoids also prevent the oxidation cholesterol that leads to plaque formation and hardening of the arteries. Consuming tomato paste regularly improves blood pressure.  This helps in proper blood flow and decreases the risk of heart attack and stroke.

Minerals in 100 grams of Tomato Paste:

  • Calcium 36 milligrams
  • Iron 2.98 milligrams
  • Magnesium 42 milligrams
  • Phosphorus 83 milligrams
  • Potassium 1014 milligrams
  • Sodium 59 milligrams
  • Zinc 0.63 milligrams

Vitamins in 100 grams of Tomato Paste:

  • Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid 21.9 milligrams
  • Thiamin 0.06 milligrams
  • Riboflavin 0.153 milligrams
  • Niacin 3.076 milligrams
  • Vitamin B-6 0.216 milligrams
  • Folate, DFE 12 µg
  • Vitamin A, RAE 76 µg
  • Vitamin A, IU 1525 IU
  • Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol) 4.3 milligrams
  • Vitamin K (phylloquinone) 11.4 micrograms

Lipids in 100 grams of Tomato Paste:

  • Fatty acids, total saturated 0.1 grams
  • Fatty acids, total monounsaturated 0.067 grams
  • Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated 0.16 grams

Uses in Cooking

For best results, simmer your tomato paste on the stovetop it so that it can caramelize, which greatly enhances its flavor.  Add it to your recipes after you’ve sautéed the aromatics, like garlic, onion, and herbs. The tomato paste only needs a couple minutes to caramelize and develop a darker color and richer flavor. Adding your tomato paste too early could cause it to burn, so make sure you keep an eye on it as it browns. 

Tomato paste can be used to prepare a number of the dishes, including:

  • Use tomato paste to make homemade low-sugar ketchup
  • Use it is soups and stews.
  • Add it to thicken tomato sauces for pasta.
  • Add body to casseroles and meatloaf.
  • Use it to marinate for meat.
  • Combine tomato paste, olive oil, and oregano for a low sugar pizza sauce.

Side Effects

tomato paste carbs

Tomatoes are safe to eat, however the tomato leaf is unsafe for human consumption. In large quantities, tomato leaves can cause poisoning. Symptoms of tomato leaf poisoning may include severe mouth and throat irritation, vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness, headache, mild spasms, and in serious cases, even death.  Never consume tomato leaves. 

Tomatoes are safe for pregnant women and nursing mothers in regular food amounts.

Fiber in Tomato Paste

There are 4 grams of dietary fiber in 100 grams of tomato paste.

Sugar in Tomato Paste

100 grams of tomato paste contains 12 grams of sugar.

Tomato Paste Alternatives

If you don’t have a can tomato paste in your pantry, you can use any of the following alternatives instead to enhance the flavor of your dishes:

  • Tomato sauce or puree
  • Tomato juice
  • Tomato soup
  • Canned tomatoes
  • Fresh tomatoes
  • Ketchup
  • Red pepper paste
  • Tomato salsa
  • Red wine

Keto Butternut Squash & Zucchini Chili

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound lean ground beef, ground chicken or ground turkey
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, pressed
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon pink Himalayan sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • ¼ cup of black beans, pinto beans
  • 1 handful of kidney beans, rinsed drained
  • 1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes
  • ½ can tomato puree
  • ¼ cup spicy tomato salsa
  • 1 cup butternut squash, peeled and cubes in ½ inch pieces
  • 1 cup zucchini, peeled and cubes in ½ inch pieces
  • A splash of red wine vinegar (optional).

Instructions:

  1. In a large saucepan oven over medium heat, brown the meat together with the onion, until meat is fully cooked and onion is translucent, about 7 minutes.
  2. Add garlic, tomato paste, and spices.  Continue to cook another few minutes.  Slowly pour in water, beans, diced tomatoes and tomato puree. Bring to a rolling boil and then reduce heat. Add in squash and zucchini continue to simmer while covered for about 20 minutes until squash and zucchini is tender and then stir in vinegar and salsa.
  3. Top with your cheddar, Parmesan or mozzarella cheese and enjoy!

Related Questions:

Is Tomato Paste Gluten-Free?

The popular brand, Hunts assures that all of their processed tomato products, including tomato paste, pasta sauces and pizza sauces, are considered gluten-free at less than 20 parts per million.  Some brands may add wheat flour as a thickener, so always check the label first to make sure there is no wheat or flour added.

Is Tomato Paste Vegan?

Yes, tomato paste is cruelty-free and does not contain any animal products. However, as with most foods, there may be variations by brand. Always scan the label before purchasing tomato paste or sauce to ensure there are no animal products added to the product.

Melissa Marshall

A litigation paralegal and writer. Her first novel debuts this fall. She lives with her kitten, Zoey overlooking the waterfront in beautiful Dartmouth, Nova Scotia - also known as the “City of Lakes”.

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