Is Sucralose Keto-Friendly?

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Written by Brenda Peralta, Registered Dietitian and medically reviewed by Abby Courtenay

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One of the most challenging things in keto is finding something sweet that won’t kick you out of ketosis. 

Using artificial sweeteners is one way to get the sweet craving out of your system. However, some people prefer to avoid artificial sweeteners. 

Since it is one of the most common sweeteners on the market, it’s important to know if sucralose is keto-friendly.

What is it used for? How many carbs does it have? Are some brands better than others? Does it impact ketosis?

We will discuss all of these questions and more in this article. 

Let’s get started. 


What is sucralose? 

It is a no-calorie artificial sweetener created in a lab. It has been created to be 400 to 600 times sweeter than regular table sugar. 

It generally doesn’t leave a bitter aftertaste in your mouth like other artificial sweeteners. However, some people still don’t like the taste of it, which is different from regular table sugar. 

The most popular sucralose-based artificial sweetener is Splenda.  

It can be used in drinks, baking, or cooking to enhance the dish’s sweetness without adding calories or sugar. 


Sucralose nutrition facts

Now let’s talk about the nutritional facts of this sweetener. How many carbs does it have? How many calories? 

Since it is most commonly found in Splenda, let’s take a look at this particular brand’s nutritional information. 

Serving size: 1 packet (1g)

  • Calories: 3 kcal
  • Fat: 0 g
  • Net carbs: 0.9 g
  • Total carbs: 0.9 g
  • Fiber: 0 g
  • Protein: 0 g

As you can see, while it does contain some carbs, it is considered calorie-free since it has less than 5 kcal per serving. Having only 3 kcal doesn’t represent a significant amount. 

So how come it has some carbs and calories when it’s supposed to be calorie-free? The molecule of sucralose doesn’t contain any calories. 

However, maltodextrin is added to add some bulk in the packets during the processing. Maltodextrin is a carb that offers some calories. That is why it has 3 kcal per packet. 

Still, it has a very low carb content since it has less than 1 gram per serving. 




Are you allowed to eat sucralose on keto?

Yes, you are allowed to eat it on a keto diet. 

Since it is low in carbs, you can have it without worrying that it will affect your ketosis levels. 

If you want to have something sweet, adding this artificial sweetener can help manage those cravings without affecting your ketone levels. 

However, remember that since it has maltodextrin, it does have some carbs you should be aware of (just less than 1 gram per packet).

Some people might experience gastrointestinal issues like bloating, stomach cramps, or diarrhea when consuming this sweetener. 


How much can you have on a keto diet?

You can technically have however much sucralose you want since it won’t provide you with a considerable amount of calories or carbs. 

However, there are some guidelines on how much you should consume.

According to the FDA, an acceptable daily intake of sucralose is 5 mg per kilogram of body weight

This means you can safely have up to 23 packets of Splenda per day for a person weighing 60 kg (132 pounds), as per FDA recommendations. People who weigh more can have more, but 23 packets is probably more than enough. 


What kind can you have on keto?

You can use it in different forms. All of the following are safe to consume while doing keto. 

  • Powder. It’s easy to add to drinks since it’s powdered, but you can also use it to sprinkle it on top of foods (like a keto parfait). 
  • Liquid. Easy to carry around and dissolve in any liquid that needs a little sweetness. 
  • Granulated. This is the best one to use when cooking or baking. 

While Splenda is the most common brand on the market, there are other types you can use whenever you are on a keto diet. Here is a list of other sucralose alternatives that are not Splenda:

  • SucraDrops
  • Happy Belly
  • EZ Sweetz
  • Purecane
  • Hard Rhino

Make sure to read the nutrition label when buying an artificial sweetener to check how many calories and carbs it contains. 




What can you eat with sucralose?

Since it doesn’t have carbs, you can add it to any food you choose. 

  • Use it to substitute sugar in any recipe or whenever you want to sweeten a food or drink. 
  • For example, if you are making a smoothie, you can add some of this sweetener to change the flavor.
  • You can also add it to lemonade, tea, coffee, or any other drink of your choice. 
  • For a snack, sprinkle some on top of Greek yogurt with berries
  • You can also make baked keto goods or pastries with granulated sucralose. It stays sweet even when heated. You can substitute sugar with granular sucralose without changing the amount (1:1). 


Keto-friendly sucralose alternatives

If you are not a fan, other keto-friendly alternatives can be used in your dishes to help you provide some sweetness to your life. 

Remember that sugar and honey are high in carbs, so they are best to avoid. 

For sugar-free alternatives, you can try:

If you are going to use it for baking, the best option is to use erythritol since it’s the most stable one and won’t change the texture and flavor of your baked goods. 


FAQ about sucralose on a keto diet 

If you still have questions about sucralose and the keto diet, you have come to the right place. Here are the most frequently asked questions. 

Yes, it is a keto-friendly alternative to sugar. 
While it does have some carbs due to having maltodextrin, it has less than 1 gram of carbs per packet, making it an ideal option for those on a keto diet.

You can have any sweetener that is not high in carbs. 
For example, stevia, monk fruit, allulose, and erythritol are all zero-calorie alternatives. They can all be used in baking, cooking, or drinks. 

The scientific community does not have a definitive answer; the research shows mixed results. There have been some studies on animals and humans that suggest it can potentially spike your insulin levels. However, more research must be conducted to determine the link between them since most studies are done in small populations. 

Research shows no link between sucralose and weight gain. This makes sense since sucralose has no calories. 

In fact, since sucralose is calorie-free, when you use it to replace high-calorie foods, you may lose weight due to a caloric deficit. 

However, some studies suggest that sucralose can stimulate appetite, which could potentially cause you to eat more and hence gain weight.

They are both non-caloric alternatives you can use on a keto diet. 
One of the biggest differences is that stevia is natural while sucralose is created in a lab. 
In the end, you can choose whichever you prefer. 

The FDA recommends consuming no more than 5 mg of sucralose per kilogram of bodyweight.

This means that someone who weighs 60 kg (132 pounds) should have no more than 23 packets of sucralose per day. It is unlikely that you will need so much because 1 packet is equal in sweetness to 2 teaspoons of sugar.