Are string beans high in carbs?

String beans, also known as green beans, snap beans or snap peas, are a common vegetable that is consumed around the world. String beans are considered a healthy addition to any diet, but some people wonder if they are high in carbohydrates.

Quick Answer: No, string beans are actually very low in carbs and high in fiber. One cup of raw string beans contains about 7 grams of carbs, 4 grams of which is fiber. So the net carbs are only around 3 grams.

String beans get their name from the fibrous string that runs along the seam of the bean pod. This tough fiber needs to be removed before eating. After removing the string, string beans can be eaten raw or cooked. When cooked, the most popular preparation methods include steaming, boiling, sautéing, roasting and frying. String beans have a crunchy texture and sweet, grassy flavor.

The nutrient content does vary slightly depending on whether the beans are raw or cooked. But in general, string beans are packed with vitamins, minerals and powerful plant compounds that provide many health benefits. Some of the top nutrients in 1 cup (125g) of raw green beans include:

  • Vitamin C: 14% of the Daily Value (DV)
  • Vitamin K: 24% of the DV
  • Folate: 12% of the DV
  • Manganese: 12% of the DV
  • Vitamin A: 11% of the DV
  • Fiber: 4g
  • Potassium: 4% of the DV

In addition to important vitamins and minerals, string beans contain beneficial plant compounds like carotenoids and flavonoids. Research shows these antioxidant compounds provide protection against chronic diseases like heart disease and cancer.

So with their stellar nutrient profile and low calorie count, it’s easy to see why string beans are considered a super healthy vegetable. Keep reading to learn more about the carb content and health benefits of string beans.

Are String Beans Low Carb?

When evaluating the carb content of different foods, it’s important to understand the difference between total carbs, net carbs and fiber.

Total carbs refers to the grams of all carbohydrates in a food, including starch, sugar and fiber.

Net carbs is the amount of digestible carbs that actually impact blood sugar levels. It’s calculated by subtracting the grams of fiber (which is indigestible) from the total carbs.

For example, a food with 15 grams of total carbs and 5 grams of fiber would have 10 grams of net carbs (15 – 5 = 10).

Most green vegetables are very low in net carbs, and string beans are no exception.

Here are the carb stats for 1 cup raw string beans (125g):

Total carbs Fiber Net carbs
7 grams 4 grams 3 grams

As you can see, the total carb count is 7 grams but 4 of those grams come from fiber. So the net carb count is just 3 grams.

Net Carbs in Cooked String Beans

Cooking string beans reduces some of the fiber content, so the net carb counts are slightly higher for cooked beans.

Here is the carb content for 1 cup of cooked string beans prepared by different cooking methods:

Type Total carbs Fiber Net carbs
Boiled 6 grams 2 grams 4 grams
Steamed 5 grams 2 grams 3 grams
Roasted 9 grams 3 grams 6 grams
Fried 8 grams 2 grams 6 grams

As you can see, even when cooked, string beans are still very low in net digestible carbs, ranging from 3–6 grams depending on preparation method.

So a 1/2 cup serving of cooked string beans would provide about 1–3 grams of net carbs. This carb content makes them an excellent choice for low carb and ketogenic diets.

In comparison, here are the net carbs counts for some other common vegetables:

Vegetable Net carbs in 1 cup
Broccoli 4 grams
Asparagus 4 grams
Bell peppers 5 grams
Carrots 7 grams
Corn 19 grams
Potato 26 grams

This comparison shows that string beans are one of the lowest carb vegetables. They are in the same league as asparagus and broccoli, while vegetables like corn and potato contain significantly more net carbs.

So the verdict is clear – string beans are an ultra low carb vegetable. The low carb and high fiber content make them a perfect addition to low carb meals and great for managing blood sugar levels.

Nutritional Benefits of String Beans

In addition to being low carb, string beans are highly nutritious and provide some great health benefits.

Here is more about some of the top nutrients found in string beans.


String beans are an excellent source of dietary fiber, containing both insoluble and soluble fiber.

The indigestible cell walls provide insoluble fiber which helps keep the digestive system healthy by providing bulk and prevents constipation.

String beans also contain pectin, a type of soluble fiber that helps slow down digestion, promote fullness, and stabilize blood sugar levels after eating. Fiber has also been linked to reduced inflammation and lower risk of heart disease and diabetes.

Just 1 cup of string beans provides 14% of the recommended daily intake for fiber.

Vitamin C

With over 10% of the RDI in just 1 cup, string beans are loaded with immune-boosting vitamin C.

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that is needed for the growth, development and repair of tissues throughout the body. It also helps the body absorb iron more efficiently.

A diet high in vitamin-C foods can help prevent damage caused by free radicals and may reduce the risk of heart disease and certain cancers.

Vitamin K

String beans are high in vitamin K, providing over 20% of the RDI per cup. This important nutrient plays a key role in bone metabolism and blood clotting.

Several studies show that a diet high in vitamin-K containing foods like string beans and other green vegetables can improve bone health and reduce risk of bone fractures.


String beans also contain good amounts of the trace mineral manganese, with around 12% of the RDI in 1 cup.

Manganese is necessary for optimal functioning of the brain and nervous system. It’s also crucial for healthy bone structure as it helps build essential enzymes for bone formation.

Some animal studies have found that manganese deficiency can lead to impaired bone formation.


Known as an electrolyte mineral, potassium helps regulate fluid balance, nerve transmission and blood pressure. String beans contain 4% of the RDI for potassium per serving.

Diets high in potassium have been shown to lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of stroke. The adequate intake recommendation for adults is 4700 mg per day.


Green vegetables like string beans contain carotenoid antioxidants including beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin.

Carotenoids provide the yellow, orange or red color pigment in fruits and vegetables. They have powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits that are linked to reduced risk of chronic illnesses.

Some studies suggest carotenoids may help prevent heart disease, cancer, macular degeneration and cataracts.


String beans also contain flavonoid antioxidants like quercetin and kaempferol. More than 6000 flavonoids have been identified in plant foods.

Like carotenoids, flavonoids have strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects in the body and provide protection against oxidative stress and cell damage. Increased intake of flavonoid-rich foods is associated with lower risk of heart disease, cancer and neurodegenerative diseases.


The green pigment in string bean pods and leaves is from chlorophyll. This phytochemical has powerful healing properties.

Some recent studies indicate chlorophyll can help remove toxins from the body, inactivate carcinogens and increase red blood cell production. It also has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antimicrobial effects in the body.

Health Benefits of String Beans

The impressive lineup of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants in string beans can provide some great health benefits. Here is more about some of the top benefits associated with this vegetable.

May Improve Digestive Health

With 4 grams of fiber per cup, string beans can promote regularity and improve gut health. The fiber feeds the healthy bacteria in the digestive system, which helps reduce inflammation and optimize digestion.

The combination of insoluble and soluble fiber in string beans helps prevent constipation, bloating and other digestive issues like diverticulitis and hemorrhoids.

Help Control Blood Sugar

The high fiber content and low net carbs in string beans slow down digestion and prevent spikes in blood sugar levels.

String beans have a very low glycemic index, meaning they do not cause large fluctuations in blood glucose. This makes them especially beneficial for those with diabetes or pre-diabetes.

Fiber also enhances insulin sensitivity, allowing better blood sugar control. Including string beans as part of a healthy diet can help manage diabetes.

Support Heart Health

String beans provide nutrients that are important for a healthy heart. The fiber helps lower cholesterol levels while the potassium supports healthy blood pressure.

Studies suggest getting enough vitamin K, vitamin C and flavonoids from vegetables like string beans is associated with up to a 20% reduced risk of heart disease.

The anti-inflammatory nutrients in string beans may also help prevent atherosclerosis and protect blood vessels.

Promote Bone Strength

The vitamin K, manganese and vitamin C in string beans all support bone health. Vitamin K is especially important for preventing osteoporosis, as low intakes have been linked to increased fracture risk.

One study in over 900 elderly adults found that consuming at least 108 mcg of vitamin K daily reduced hip fracture risk by 65% compared to consuming less than that amount. Just one cup of string beans provides 24% of the recommended vitamin K intake.

May Have Anticancer Effects

The various antioxidants and phytochemicals in string beans, like carotenoids and flavonoids, have been studied for their anticancer abilities.

Research indicates these beneficial plant compounds can inhibit cancer cell growth, restrict tumor angiogenesis, and induce cancer cell death. Population studies link higher intakes of carotenoid and flavonoid antioxidants to reduced risk of certain cancers.

Support Healthy Weight Loss

With just 35 calories per cup, string beans are a great low-calorie food option if you are trying to lose weight.

The fiber adds bulk and promotes fullness, which may curb appetite and reduce calorie intake throughout the day. Including non-starchy vegetables like string beans at meals is linked to healthier body weight.

According to one study, consuming 14 grams of fiber per day can increase weight loss by 10%. With 4 grams of fiber per cup, string beans provide an easy way to boost fiber intake and feel satisfied.

Improve Eye Health

The lutein and zeaxanthin antioxidants found in string beans have been shown to help prevent retinal damage and age-related macular degeneration.

These carotenoids accumulate in the retina of the eye and act as antioxidants, protecting the eyes from harmful blue light and damaging free radicals. Getting enough lutein and zeaxanthin in your diet may lower the risk of eye diseases.

How to Buy and Store String Beans

When purchasing string beans, look for crisp, bright green pods without brown spots or blemishes. Avoid beans that appear limp or shriveled. Also check that the beans snap easily when bent instead of being limp.

Choose organic string beans when possible to reduce exposure to pesticides and maximize nutritional quality.

Store fresh string beans in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. Rinse under cool water right before using to clean.

For longer storage, string beans can be blanched and frozen for 6-8 months. Just be sure to thaw before cooking or consuming.

Canned string beans are widely available but have diminished nutritional value compared to fresh. Go for low sodium options and give them a rinse before eating to remove excess sodium.

When cooking string beans, avoid overcooking them to a mushy consistency. Lightly steam, boil or sauté beans to preserve texture and nutrients.

Simple Ways to Enjoy String Beans

Here are some easy ways to incorporate more string beans into your diet:

– Toss steamed or roasted string beans with olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper.

– Add raw or cooked string beans to pasta dishes, casseroles, soups and stir-fries.

– Dip raw string beans in hummus, guacamole or salad dressing for a snack.

– Mix with other veggies like zucchini, peppers and onions for a veggie sauté or kebabs.

– Blanch string beans then mix into potato, pasta or green salads.

– Top string beans with almonds, feta or parmesan cheese.

– Stir-fry with sesame oil, ginger and garlic.

– Roast at 425°F until tender and browned for 20-25 minutes.

The Bottom Line

String beans are an extremely low-carb vegetable, providing just 2–3 grams of net carbs per cooked cup. They are packed with fiber, vitamins, minerals and beneficial plant compounds that provide many health benefits.

String beans support blood sugar control, gut health, heart health, weight management and more. Their stellar nutrient profile and versatility make them a simple way to add nutrition to any meal.

So if you’re monitoring carbs or just want to increase your vegetable intake, be sure to keep string beans in regular rotation.

Leave a Comment